Top 10 Healthiest Fast Food Breakfasts
Written by: Catalogs.com Editorial Staff
October 25, 2011
Filed Under Food
Contributed by Tim Brugger, Catalogs.com Top 10 Guru
Finding a healthy fast food meal isn’t quite looking for a needle in a haystack, it just feels like it sometimes.
Though it seems restaurants are at least trying to provide alternatives, there’s still a ways to go.
With that said, it’s not impossible to find a decent fast food breakfast. So, what to look for? Something with fiber and protein, but low in the sugar and fat department; you can see why it takes some doing. But I’ve committed massive resources to the project and, in an effort to keep America healthy, found these top ten healthiest fast food breakfasts.
10. Carl’s Jr. – French Toast Dips
Not the ideal fast food breakfast item to be sure, but compared to other Carl’s Jr options, this is a veritable smorgasbord of health. Oh, but you’ll need to leave the syrup container unopened. The additional sugar and fat hole up in that little plastic doohickey may as well be a Snickers bar for all the good it will do you.
9. Jack in the Box – Breakfast Jack
Jack in the Box has always been a source of angst for me; I think it’s the Oprah Syndrome from all those commercials. You know, the need to be on every cover, or in this case advertisement? Anyway, one thing they do have going for them is a relatively low fat, low calorie breakfast item; the Breakfast Jack (see, there it is again!). A bit high on the sodium at 760 mg, but better than most.
8. McDonald’s – Hotcakes
Surprisingly, at least to me, McDonald’s has a fairly healthy fast food breakfast alternative. The old-school flapjacks, sans the syrup of course, are decent in the fiber department at 3 g and only 350 calories. Egg McMuffins nearly made the list until I checked on the cholesterol; Oyvay! The McDeathMuffin has 260mg of cholesterol compared to just 20 mg for the hotcakes. Decision made.
7. Cosi – Spinach Florentine Breakfast Wrap
This is an absolutely delicious and amazingly healthy fast food breakfast. The biggest problem is finding a Cosi’s near you, as the advertisers say. If these were more prevalent, guaranteed they’d be higher on the list. These are likely the healthiest of the Top 10 items; 24 g’s of protein and 11 g’s of fiber. That’s nearly the protein equivalent of a lean burger. That’ll jump start your day.
6. Dunkin Donuts – Wheat Bagel
In terms of healthy breakfast alternatives, the wheat bagel is actually better for you than several of the Top 10 items on our list. But c’mon, a wheat bagel instead of item #3 if you’re heck bent for a bagel? I don’t think so. Anyway, this is a great source of fiber with no cholesterol and very manageable sodium content.
5. Starbucks – Low Fat Bran Muffins
One of the healthiest of all the fast food breakfast items, particularly in terms of fiber content, is at the local Starbucks. Sold out, or the line too long? No worries, the one across the street will probably have one. Why, you may ask, if it’s so healthy is not number one on our list; a legitimate question. Two reasons; one, it’s a bran muffin and two, Starbucks is usually a bit more spendy than most and I’m cheap like that. Though, to my tightwad credit, they do occupy a spot at #2 on the list.
4. Jamba Juice – Mango Peach Topper
A little different than your traditional healthy fast food breakfast alternatives, this is pseudo-combination of smoothie and yogurt parfait; a Smogurtfait if you will. In addition to a whopping 6 g’s of fiber, the fruit and yogurt add a smidgen of Vitamin’s A and C too. Plus, it’s got to be one of the tastiest breakfast items on the list, hands down.
3. Dunkin Donuts – Blueberry Bagel
As odd as this sounds, make sure to avoid the low fat blueberry bagel. It’s actually higher in both fat content and calories; huh? I don’t know either; but I do love a blueberry bagel. Not only are they a quick, tasty breakfast alternative but easy to eat on the go and relatively inexpensive.
2. Starbucks – Protein Plate
Now, this is a tasty looking little fast food breakfast loaded with protein and fiber. That little squeeze packet you see? That’s not filled with the usual high fat, high cholesterol cream cheese. Nope, that’s peanut butter to help crank up the protein; and a little extra fiber too. Only downside to this breakfast option is cost. Prices will vary of course, but I can only assume it’s a small fortune compared to some of the other items on the list. But for your health? Tough to beat.
1. Subway – Western Egg White & Cheese Muffin Melt
Compared to other fast food options, I suppose it’s not surprising that Subway would top our list. And like most of their sandwiches, just because you can’t feel your arteries hardening as you eat it doesn’t mean it lacks in taste. They don’t have a drive-thru, at least not around here, but you’re in and out in minutes either way. It’s also a healthy portion, big enough to whet most appetites unlike some other fast food breakfast options.