10 Low-Calorie Fast-Food Breakfasts for Weight Loss
This statement may shock you, but you can eat fast food with a weight loss goal in mind. Drive-thrus are incredibly convenient and can allow you to eat a decent meal without any food prep. Even though it's best to prepare your own food more often than not, fast food can be incorporated into a healthy diet. If you find yourself looking for healthy breakfast options at your favorite drive-thru, here are a few tips to keep in mind when choosing just the right low-calorie fast-food breakfasts for weight loss.
- Skip the combos. These meals can be appealing and may seem like a good value, but they can pack excessive calories, grams of fat, and sodium. Instead of a meal, just get an entrée. If you need to add more food to the meal to make it more satiating, consider bringing fruit from home, or look at the individual side items offered at the restaurant.
- Avoid anything that's fried. This goes for side items, like hash browns and proteins. Fried chicken on a breakfast sandwich or fried side items will add significant grams of fat and calories to your meal without making it more filling. Look for options prepared with less oil to save calories.
- Limit sauces. Syrup, honey, and ketchup are examples of condiments you may incorporate into your breakfast that add little nutritional benefit. Many sauces are high in sugar and fat, which could slow down your weight loss progress. Look for light options when available, and enjoy the flavors of the food without loading up on sauces.
Now, without delay, let's get into 10 of the best low-calorie fast-food breakfasts for weight loss. Keep reading to learn all about them, and when you're done, be sure to check out the 10 Best Trader Joe's Frozen Foods for Weight Loss.
McDonald's Egg McMuffin®
NUTRITION: 310 calories, 13 g fat (6 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 770 mg sodium, 30 g carbs (2 g dietary fiber, 3 g total sugars), 17 g protein
Our list of the best low-calorie fast-food breakfasts for weight loss kicks off with a classic. One of the most well-known breakfast options at McDonald's is the Egg McMuffin®. This breakfast sandwich is made with an English muffin, egg, Canadian bacon, and American cheese. Even with butter used in the preparation, this option comes in just over 300 calories. This weight loss-friendly sandwich also packs 17 grams of protein to create a filling meal. If you are looking to increase your fullness level, pack some fruit from home to have on the side. This will add a few grams of fiber for a few calories.
McDonald's Sausage Burrito
NUTRITION: 310 calories, 17 g fat (7 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 800 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (1 g dietary fiber, 2 g total sugars), 13 g protein
If you are looking for an option with a little spice, McDonald's Sausage Burrito made with eggs, sausage, a vegetable mix, and cheese loaded into a flour tortilla could be right up your alley. At 310 calories, this is a low-calorie option that also only provides 25 grams of carbs. While this can help with weight loss, this meal is unfortunately low in fiber. Add fruit or veggies from home to boost your fiber intake for a much more filling meal. This meal is also on the low end for protein, so consider a small portion of plain, non-fat Greek yogurt on the side for a boost.
Starbucks Egg White & Roasted Red Pepper Egg Bites
NUTRITION: 170 calories, 8 g fat (5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 470 mg sodium, 11 g carbs (0 g dietary fiber, 3 g total sugars), 12 g protein
Egg whites provide great protein with little fat, helping to create a lower-calorie meal. At only 170 calories, these Egg White & Roasted Red Pepper Egg Bites from Starbucks are amongst the lowest-calorie breakfast offerings at any fast-food restaurant. For those who want to limit their carb intake, these are a great option. With only 11 grams of carbs, these bites could be beneficial for weight loss. However, they don't provide any fiber, making it an incomplete meal. To boost this nutrient while keeping carbs low, pick up the avocado spread for an additional 90 calories and a whopping 4 grams of fiber. This still makes for a meal under 300 calories that provides a better balance of essential nutrients.
Starbucks Turkey Bacon, Cheddar & Egg White Sandwich
NUTRITION: 230 calories, 5 g fat (2.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 560 mg sodium, 28 g carbs (3 g dietary fiber, 2 g total sugars), 17 g protein
For only 230 calories, this Turkey Bacon, Cheddar & Egg White Sandwich still provides an impressive 17 grams of protein. Combined with 3 grams of fiber, this could make for a pretty filling meal. Using egg whites and turkey bacon helps keep the fat count on this meal low, so if you want more of this satiating nutrient, try adding the avocado spread to your sandwich. If that doesn't do it for you, pick up an individual pack of nuts (or bring it from home) to add more healthy fats to your meal.
Starbucks Spinach, Feta & Egg White Wrap
NUTRITION: 290 calories, 8 g fat (3.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 840 mg sodium, 34 g carbs (3 g dietary fiber, 5 g total sugars), 20 g protein
Next up on this list of the best low-calorie fast-food breakfasts for weight loss is the Spinach, Feta & Egg White Wrap from Starbucks. A common theme for the low-calorie options at Starbucks is egg whites. If you are looking for low-calorie options at other fast-food restaurants, choosing a meal made with egg whites is a sure way to eliminate many of the higher-calorie options on the menu.
This breakfast sandwich combines feta cheese, egg whites, spinach, a tomato blend, and sun-dried tomato cream cheese in a whole-wheat wrap to create a balanced breakfast. This option is one of the higher sodium choices on this list, so to balance it out, stay mindful of your salt intake for the rest of the day. Enjoy your wrap on its own, or pair it with fruit from home for a heartier meal.
Dunkin' Wake-Up Wrap® with Turkey Sausage
NUTRITION: 240 calories, 15 g fat (6 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 680 mg sodium, 15 g carbs (0 g dietary fiber, 1 g total sugars), 11 g protein
Another wrap option, the Dunkin' Wake-Up Wrap® with Turkey Sausage comes in under 250 calories while still providing 11 grams protein. If counting calories is your priority, this is a good option. However, this wrap is missing fiber and is relatively low in protein to be a full meal. Instead of adding one of the higher fat sides from Dunkin', like the hash browns or snackin' bacon, bring fruit from home to enjoy on the side. Similar to the McDonald's burrito option, you could add a portion of Greek yogurt on the side for a protein boost, and top with berries for a high-fiber fruit option.
Chick-fil-A Egg White Grill
NUTRITION: 300 calories, 8 g fat (4 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 1020 mg sodium, 31 g carbs (2 g fiber, 2 g sugar), 28 g protein
At 28 grams of protein, the Chick-fil-A Egg White Grill packs the most protein on this list. And, at only 300 calories, this sandwich can still be considered a low-calorie option. You have the option to add sliced tomato to your sandwich which adds nutrients, flavor, and volume to your meal for a few calories. Just skip the sauces on the side, some of which provide 140 calories per packet! If you want a little protein boost, you can add an extra egg white for 30 calories, keeping this meal low in calories while packing even more satiating protein. Unfortunately, this sandwich does provide over 1,000 mg of sodium, so be sure to limit your sodium the rest of the day to balance out this concentrated amount.
Chick-fil-A Greek Yogurt Parfait
NUTRITION: 240 calories, 8 g fat (3.5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 85 mg sodium, 31 g carbs (1 g fiber, 25 g sugar), 12 g protein
This Greek Yogurt Parfait from Chick-fil-A comes with the option for cookie crumble topping or granola. Surprisingly, the cookie crumble variety is lower in calories, fat, and carbohydrates, making it a better option for weight loss. Unfortunately, this meal is quite high in sugar with over 25 grams. To account for this, limit your sugar for the rest of the day and avoid adding any more to this meal. Instead, if you are looking to create a heartier parfait, add some nuts or seeds from home to incorporate healthy fats, fiber, and a little protein.
Taco Bell Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito Bacon
NUTRITION: 350 calories, 16 g fat (5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 880 mg sodium, 38 g carbs (2 g dietary fiber, 3 g sugar), 13 g protein
At 350 calories, the Taco Bell Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito Bacon is the highest-calorie option on this list. However, this calorie number can still suit low-calorie needs for weight loss. To make this option work even better for your needs, skip the nacho cheese sauce to bring calories down to 320. This modification won't impact protein much, which keeps this meal a filling option. You'll actually be saving a few grams of fat and saturated fat, making for a healthier breakfast. If you are looking for a flavor boost, add salsa to your burrito for a few calories.
Panera Bread Avocado, Egg White, Spinach & Cheese on Multigrain Bagel Flat
NUTRITION: 350 calories, 14 g fat (5 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 680 mg sodium, 39 g carbs (5 g dietary fiber, 5 g total sugars), 19 g protein
This Panera Bread Avocado, Egg White, Spinach & Cheese on Multigrain Bagel Flat wraps up our list of the best low-calorie fast-food breakfasts for weight loss. This sandwich has the highest fiber content of all the sandwiches and wraps on this list. Paired with 19 grams of protein, this sandwich should be satiating and beneficial for your weight loss goals. The nutrient balance of this breakfast is good, but if you want to reduce calories without impacting fiber, you could skip the cheddar cheese. Just keep in mind that this modification will reduce protein by a few grams. As is, this option may be one of the healthier low-calorie options on this list. You can thank the multigrain bread, avocado, spinach, and lean egg whites for this!