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WHATCHA GOT COOKIN’ THAT’S HEALTHY & TASTY?

Melanie is regularly posting new and tasty recipes with the healthiest foods on earth. Check back often for ideas on making yummy meals and delightful treats that have health benefits.

WHAT’S THE HEALTHIEST FOOD TO BUY?

Going to the grocery store or farmer’s market and not sure what to buy to achieve your best health or how to purchase good, quality food on a budget? Melanie’s food buying guide for healthy meals and snacks is here to help!

Least Bad Fast Food Choices – If You Must

Let me be absolutely clear up front…  I don’t eat fast food and prefer that you don’t either.  Even if you think, ‘well I got a salad’, please realize those veggies have been chemically grown and may also be GMO.  And what about that soybean oil dressing you are covering the salad with, the soybean oil from GMO soybeans that can inhibit your thyroid function and promote bad estrogen?  But I digress.  Yes, the salad MAY be a better choice than some of the other stuff at fast food places.  Definitely better than the milkshake.  Which leads me to what this blog post is actually about.  Making less bad choices at fast food places.  Again, I strongly recommend that you don’t eat any fast food at all, but if you find it a necessity for whatever reason, then I want to help you make what I deem as the least bad choices at the most popular fast food places.

Given that several of these suggestions are indeed salads as the least bad choices, I strongly recommend that you get in the habit of carrying a small bottle of olive oil with you like I do when I have to travel.  It’s rare to meet a dressing at a fast food place that isn’t primarily soybean oil (even if it does have some olive oil in it).

And please, please always order the water!  *Unsweetened iced tea or regular coffee can be ordered if you feel the need.

Without further ado…     Lunch

Arby’s

  • Roast Turkey Farmhouse Salad *If you don’t have any of your own olive oil or homemade olive oil based dressing with you, and can’t eat the salad without a condiment, the Tangy Barbecue Sauce is less horrible than most of the other condiments
  • Go-Go Squeeze Applesauce
  • Side Salad

Burger King

  • Chicken, Apple, and Cranberry Salad – Please specify the grilled chicken
  • Apple Slices
  • Side Salad
  • French Fries – Value Size only
  • Egg Patty – If you are there at breakfast, the only sane option would be to just get some egg patties, then you can add apple slices or fries if need be. *They should sell you just egg patties, or at least, McDonald’s does

Chik-Fil-A

KFC – Nothing.  Gluten in everything.

Krystal

  • Side Salad
  • Small Fries
  • Grits
  • Original Scrambler w/Bacon
  • Kryspers

McDonald’s

  • Premium Southwest Salad (w/o tortilla strips or Southwest Dressing)
  • Salsa Packets
  • Premium Bacon Ranch Salad (w/o Ranch Dressing)
  • Side Salad
  • Apple Slices
  • Cuties
  • French Fries – Small only
  • Vanilla Soft Serve Ice Cream (in a cup w/o toppings) *If you feel the dessert need
  • Fruit & Yogurt Parfait – Avoid the granola if you are really gluten or grain sensitive like me
  • Egg Patty – If you are there at breakfast, the only sane option would be to just get some egg patties *They should sell you just egg patties.  I was at an airport once and desperate for breakfast and they sold me egg patties.

Panera

  • If you don’t know about Panera’s “Power Menu”, just google it. You can order anything from the Power Menu.
  • Fruit Cup
  • Salads – Chicken Cobb, Fuji Apple Chicken Salad, Asian Sesame Chicken Salad (no won-ton noodles), BBQ Chicken Salad, Chicken Caesar, Greek w/Chicken, Classic w/Chicken – Be sure to order no croutons – Most of the dressings are going to be bad oils – Ask for a packet of olive oil (they give you these for the power menu salads)
  • Creamy Tomato Soup – No croutons
  • Stay away from the mochas and lattes and smoothies and frozen drinks and most of the iced drinks! Choose herbal teas!

 Pizza

  • I can’t in good conscience advocate pizza. But… if you must, go with the gluten free crust, PLEASE!  I do eat meat, but when it comes to the meat used on fast food pizzas, you’re better off going vegetarian.  Choose beef or chicken over pork if you do choose meat.
  • Domino’s is the only fast food pizza place doing a gluten free crust, but others are planning on offering the same soon. Technically not really fast food, but Mellow Mushroom has gluten free crust.

Sonic

  • Can’t really get a meal here, but if you really like their fries and tots/sweet potato tots, you can get those, but be sure to get mini or small. No family size!

 Starbucks

  • Okay, I know you’re probably at Starbucks for the coffee, but just get plain old coffee. Most of the beverages will have ridiculous amounts of sugar.  There were too many beverages for me to sort through, but you can look at your faves for carb count and avoid anything over like 10 carbs since it is a beverage (you get more carbs for actual food).  Also, many of the beverages are not gluten free, so keep that in mind as well.
  • Chicken & Greens Caesar Salad Bowl
  • Hearty Veggies & Brown Rice Bowl
  • Flourless Chewy Chocolate Cookie – Treat only, not to be a regular choice (and don’t get multiples)
  • Seasonal Fruit Bowl

Subway

  • Subway has a rep for being healthy because they promote themselves that way, but I don’t consider it so because the big wads of gluten laden, carb loaded bread ain’t so good for you. But they do offer salads.
  • Roast Beef or Turkey Salad best choices, but most of the salads would be acceptable except the Meatball Marinara

Taco Bell

  • Hashbrowns
  • Side of Eggs
  • Cantina Power Bowls

Wendy’s

  • Apple Pecan Chicken Salad (pecans are questionable)
  • Asian Cashew Chicken Salad
  • BBQ Ranch Chicken Salad
  • Light Honey French Dressing least bad or could use sour cream on salad
  • Garden Side or Caesar Side (no croutons)
  • Chili (no crackers)
  • Apple Slices
  • Any of the Baked Potatoes (avoid “butter” spread – not butter!!) – Sour Cream okay
  • Natural Cut Fries, Value or Small only

 Zaxby’s

  • Traditional Wings – Least bad sauces = Wimpy, Nuclear, Tongue Torch, Insane
  • Cole Slaw
  • Crinkle Fries – regular only
  • Celery
  • Side Salad

If you want to know my choices at any fast food restaurant not listed here, just let me know and I’ll add to the list.

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