How to Follow Your Restrictive Diet while at Chick-fil-A
You might be worried if you’re following a strict diet with special rules if you visit Chick-fil-A. But the truth is, you really don’t have to. You just have to order the right items, and you can still enjoy your visit while following your dietary restrictions.
It all depends on what type of diet you’re following.
This is perhaps the most common type of diet, as most people want to lose weight. The basic premise is that you then should lower your calorie intake and increase your workouts, as to create a calorie deficit. That will cause your body to compensate by burning fat deposits, leading to weight loss.
As a rule, fast-food joints offer lots of high-calorie items. But you can visit your local Chick-fil-A and find food items that don’t go over 400 calories. That way, you can still maintain a daily calorie allowance of 2,000 calories a day.
Here are some of your under-400 calories options:
- 12-count Nuggets (380 calories)
- Chick-n-Minis (360 calories)
- Cool Wrap (350 calories)
- Grilled Chicken Sandwich (320 calories)
- 3-count Chick-n-Strips (310 calories)
- Egg White Grill (290 calories)
- Bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup (255 calories)
- 8-count Nuggets or (250 calories)
- 12-count Grilled Nuggets (200 calories)
- 8-count Grilled Nuggets (130 calories)
Each one of these options count as a meal in itself. Pair them with a drink (or better yet, just plain water), and you’re good.
If you wish for some sauce, go with the Zesty Buffalo Sauce. That option comes only with an extra 25 calories.
You might be wondering why the list doesn’t contain any salads. Sadly, all the entrée salads come with more than 400 calories. That’s true even if you opt for grilled chicken. If you insist on having salad, then the lowest-calorie choice is the Lemon Kale Caesar Salad. With the dressing, you get 470 calories.
This is a common diet for those with heart or blood pressure issues, which are common for older adults. It’s also difficult to stick to a low-salt diet if you visit fast-food joints regularly. It’s quite well-known that many main food options in these places come with high levels of sodium. In fact, they’re generally regarded as “sodium bombs”.
Most Chick-fil-A food items contain more than 600mg of sodium, unfortunately. However, there are some exceptions that should be relatively healthy for you:
- 8-piece Grilled Nuggets (440 mg)
- Waffle Potato Chips (250 mg)
- Medium Waffle Fries (240 mg)
- Kale Crunch Side (140 mg)
- Greek Yogurt Parfait (80 mg)
- Buddy Fruits Apple Sauce (0 mg)
- Fruit Cup (0 mg)
Actually, the items on the Treats section of the menu (like the ice cream and milkshakes) do come with lower sodium levels. But these items also contain very high levels of calories, sugar, and fat.
If you’re sticking to a low-salt diet and you insist on getting a sauce, then go with the Honey Roasted BBQ Sauce. At least that option comes with 75mg of sodium. All the other dressings and sauces come with a minimum of 100mg of sodium per serving. In fact, many of them contain more than 400mg per serving!
More and more people these days are trying to go vegetarian. If that’s the case with you, then perhaps you should rethink your choice to visit a fast-food restaurant that’s famous for its chicken sandwiches!
Still, it is possible for you to enjoy your visit to Chick-fil-A and follow basic vegetarian premises, if you modify certain items on the menu. It will be a lot more difficult if you’re a vegan, however. But if your diet doesn’t restrict eggs, cheese, and other dairy items, then it’s doable.
Here are your best options:
- Cool Wrap. Just tell them to hold the chicken, and you’re good to go.
- Cobb Salad. Actually, you can pick any salad as long as you take out the chicken. But the Cobb Salad is a good choice because you also get some protein from the cheese and the eggs.
- Southwest Salad. This time, you get some protein from the cheese and black beans.
Consuming enough protein is one of the main issues with a vegetarian diet, as most people get their proteins from meat. This is why some vegetarians take protein supplements just to make sure they get enough protein each day.
There are plenty of low-carb diets these days, with keto among the most popular. The good news is that it’s actually not so difficult to adhere to a low-carb diet if you visit Chick-fil-A.
Many of the items here don’t contain plenty of carbs at all. Order a 12-count Nugget, and that’s only 2g of carbs. An 8-count Nugget only has 1g of carbs. That gives you more leeway for other side orders.
Go with the Side Salad with Avocado Lime Ranch Dressing, and you only get 16g of carbs. With the Kale Crunch Side, you only get 8g of carbs.
The dressings and sauces do have high levels of sugar, which may not conform with low-carb restrictions. You should especially avoid the following:
- Barbecue Sauce
- Chick-fil-A Sauce
- Fat Free Honey Mustard Dressing
- Honey Mustard Sauce
- Light Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
- Polynesian Sauce
- Sweet and Spicy Sriracha Sauce
- Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette Dressing
As you can see, you don’t have to disregard your particular dietary rules if you visit Chick-fil-A. Regardless of the diet you follow, you still have available options here.