Fast Food With Breakfast

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It’s no secret that fast food is not the healthiest choice for breakfast, but it can be healthy if you know how to order. When you’re on the go, these foods are easy to grab, but they often contain too much salt and fat, which can lead to weight gain and other health problems.

You don’t have to give up your fast food breakfast routine altogether though—there are ways to eat healthier while still maintaining convenience. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best options at popular chains like McDonald’s and Burger King.

Fast Food With Breakfast

best fast food breakfast

Image by Maitane Romagosa and Chineme Elobuike for Thrillist

Welcome to The Fasties, Thrillist’s third-annual fast food awards! The awards feature more than a dozen categories celebrating all the best foods that came out of drive-thru windows over the past year—from the Best Coffee Nuggets to the Best Spicy Chicken Sandwich, and many more. Check out the full list of categories and winners.

Maple bacon chicken croissants, hash brown steak burritos, donut bites, mocha iced coffee… okay, we’ll stop before you get too hungry reading about breakfast at fast food chains. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. 

Breakfast is now available at many fast food restaurants, and they’re flooding the market with super-creative takes on the morning meal. We visited more than a dozen major chains to determine the best breakfast in the fast food arena—based on availability, innovation, and their flagship items. The next time you’re craving a breakfast sandwich, we’ll tell you where to go. This is the best breakfast in fast food.

14. Subway

It feels like Lunchables Brunchables were the inspiration for Subway’s breakfast, which is a combo of an egg, cheese, and assorted lunch meat on a flatbread or whatever other bread you’d like. The Bacon, Egg and Cheese is limp and tasteless. These flatbreads tend to evoke edible cardboard, so maybe opt for those Brunchables instead.

13. Krystal

Breakfast at Krystal is available until 11 am. It’s pretty clear that breakfast isn’t this snack-sized burger chain’s forte, but if you have to go here for breakfast, here’s what you need to know. The signature item is the Sunriser, so stick to that. It’s similar to Krystal’s signature little burgers, only instead of a burger patty you have a choice of sausage or bacon along with egg and cheese.

Other options include the Original Scrambler Bowl—grits topped with scrambled eggs, cheese, and a sausage patty—though it’s not particularly flavorful and not worth ordering. On the other hand, the Bacon, Egg & Cheese Biscuit is a pleasant surprise. The egg is advertised as “fresh cracked” and actually tastes like it. The biscuit is dense but with enough butter that you’ll forgive it. The Chik Biscuit is unbearably dry and only salvageable if you add your own sauce.

12. White Castle

Look, you just ate a whole bagful of steaming sliders in the wee hours of the morning, so you’re probably not going to White Castle for breakfast. But if for some reason you choose the petite patty palace over the many other chains serving better breakfast options, there’s one way to make the most of it: order everything. The one good thing about this breakfast menu is the variety of items paired with the chain’s characteristically small portions. That means you can order several things—say, a basic Breakfast Slider with bacon, another Breakfast Slider with sausage, a Belgian Waffle Slider, a Chicken & Waffles Slider, and a heaping sack of Hash Brown Nibblers—and take care of your every breakfast craving, savory or sweet.

11. Burger King

That eternally happy Burger King always has a smile plastered on his face, but he won’t be happy with what we’re about to say.

The good news is that the egg and cheese-based Croissan’Wich (with bacon, ham, or sausage) is still as solid of a breakfast item as it was when it debuted in ‘83. Almost everything else is a bit of a mess, including overstuffed and overly salty offerings like the Fully Loaded Buttermilk Biscuit (ham, sausage, bacon, cheese) and the Egg-Normous Burrito (sausage, bacon, eggs, hash browns, cheese). French Toast Sticks—another holdover from the ‘80s—remain a crowdpleaser, but that isn’t enough to stand out in a breakfast landscape rife with innovation.

10. Bojangles

When it comes to breakfast offerings, the menu at Bojangles is unsurprisingly limited to biscuits (it’s just what this regional chain does). That means you’re in luck if you’re into biscuits. The Pimento Cheese Biscuit is hearty and quintessentially southern, while the basic Egg & Cheese Biscuit is only okay. Avoid the bacon and chicken biscuits—they’re dry and boring. The standout here is the Bo-Berry Biscuit, a heart-shaped biscuit studded with blueberries and topped with a drizzle of icing. They’re served warm (so be patient) and will satisfy a sweet tooth. One upside to Bojangles’ breakfast menu is that it’s available all day.

9. Carl’s Jr

Breakfast burgers should taste like breakfast. If you can’t taste the breakfast parts of this Breakfast Burger (like eggs and hash browns) because the beef patty overwhelms every other flavor in the sandwich, it ain’t worth ordering.

Overall, the breakfast program is limited to a handful of sandwiches and burritos, a few biscuits, and French Toast Dips for anyone with a sweet tooth. One highlight is the generous portion of folded egg found in the solid Bacon, Egg & Cheese Biscuit, but the real winner is the Big Country Breakfast Burrito. A hot, fresh tortilla wraps up scrambled eggs, cheese, bacon, sausage, ham, and hash browns that are covered in a warm sausage gravy that improves every ingredient it touches. It coats the burrito. It will coat your mouth. You will want more.

8. Del Taco

Let’s play a Jeopardy-like game! Here’s the clue: This meat is rarely seen on any other fast food chain’s breakfast menu. The answer: What is carne asada?

Not only can you find that tasty protein option at this Tex-Mex-style joint, but it’s the best part of the breakfast menu, which offers a smorgasbord of tortilla-based entrees. Take the overflowing Breakfast Toasted Wrap with carne asada, which smells heavenly and tastes even better, as it’s combined with eggs, hash browns, cheddar, pico, and salsa casera. A simpler—yet equally satisfying—selection is the Breakfast Burrito, which we used to order with the chain’s spicy chorizo (it was sadly discontinued), but now comes with your choice of carne asada or bacon inside.

Add the ultra-sugary (and ultra-delicious) iced coffee for a buck along with Donut Bites, and enjoy a solid ending to the meal.

7. Sonic Drive-In

The drive-in chain doesn’t care if you show up at 11:01 am and want breakfast food, even though most fast food joints stopped serving it a half-hour ago. It’ll let you order Texas toast, burritos, and French toast sticks all darn day and night. But don’t order just anything off its breakfast menu. Skip the SuperSONIC Breakfast Burrito, a jumble of ingredients (egg, sausage, jalapeño, onion, tots, tomato, cheddar) that don’t work well enough together to form a cohesive meal. The Bacon BREAKFAST TOASTER (their caps, not ours) fares better, as it’ll remind you of a grilled cheese sandwich with an egg that you’d make in your kitchen if you weren’t so lazy, or tired.

On the sweeter side of things, its Cinnabon Cinnasnacks are sugary dessert egg rolls best dipped into its refrigerated cream cheese frosting. Eat more than one and your dentist will find out and schedule a cavity filling. And if you leave a Sonic without getting an iced coffee poured over its famed nugget ice, you’re making a huge mistake. It’s a creamy, caffeinated java that’s worth pairing with any breakfast item.

6. Whataburger

It’s a rite of passage for anyone in a Whataburger town to feast on a late-night breakfast of taquitos sometime after 2 am, but even at a more civilized hour, breakfast at Whataburger wows. The variety’s impressive, too. In addition to its signature Taquitos with fluffy scrambled eggs, American cheese, and choice of bacon, crumbled sausage, Hash Brown Sticks, or chorizo when available, you’ll find sandwiches on biscuits (jalapeño-cheddar or regular) with a hard-fried disc of egg, cheese, and choice of meat (including a nice, kinda-spicy sausage patty that tastes way better than the pizza topping crumbles in the taquitos), as well as breakfast sandwiches with the same fillings on burger buns instead.

The Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit has become a greatest hit in recent years with a fried chicken tender and a gooey honey butter sauce that only gets better the more you add on. Even the fluffy, crispy-around-the-edges pancakes taste like they’re from a diner instead of a drive-thru. In all honesty, there’s not a single breakfast item here we wouldn’t order on the regular.

Illustration by Maggie Rossetti for Thrillist

5. Jack in the Box

Right off the bat, Jack in the Box earns points for having 16 wildly different breakfast items. Mini pancakes! Burritos! Biscuits! Croissants! And you can order ‘em all day and night. Not all of it is worth your money—a mostly generic breakfast sandwich line’s sole highlight is the crisp, hickory-smoked bacon. The stacked Loaded Breakfast Sandwich (eggs, bacon, ham, sausage, and cheese) looks perfect for Instagram, but even though copious amounts of egg and bacon look cool, it feels more like a dare than a well thought-out breakfast item.

Contrast that with the simple Breakfast Jack, and you might be surprised to learn that it’s the best breakfast meal on the menu. It’s not a sexy item, but it’s the tastiest thing they’ve got—a supremely thin fried egg, sliced ham, and American cheese on a bun so pillowy you could sleep on it during a cross-country flight. Order it with a Mocha Sweet Cream Iced Coffee that tastes exactly like chocolate milk and you’ve got a great start to your morning. Or night.

Illustration by Maggie Rossetti for Thrillist

4. Taco Bell

The fast food restaurant that invented Fourthmeal in 2007 somehow does not serve breakfast all day. This feels like a missed opportunity for a chain that prides itself on being innovative, especially at breakfast. The Waffle Taco was the talk of the internet in 2013 when it launched in select cities, before being unleashed nationwide in 2014. The Waffle Taco is no more, but there’s still plenty worth talking about.

These days, Taco Bell’s breakfast menu is mostly composed of toasted breakfast burritos, which you can order with various breakfast meats (or no meat!) and with or without a hash brown inside. The Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito‘s rubbery sausage is a miss, but the Hash Brown Toasted Breakfast Burrito is a lovely, eggy, cheesy, potato-filled bundle of breakfast joy that doesn’t even need meat to be satisfying (pro tip: order it vegetarian).

Same goes for the Breakfast Crunchwrap, which is required ordering thanks to its warm, inviting Creamy Jalapeño Sauce and a crispy hash brown wedged inside to provide the crunch in the name. Don’t forget a side of buttery Cinnabon Delights—you might as well while you’re here, right? And if you really want to go all in on the Taco Bell breakfast theme and take the experience to the extreme, throw in a soda for breakfast. Really. You can sip a Mountain Dew Kickstart Orange Citrus soda, which packs about as much caffeine as a cup of coffee (92mg). If soda for breakfast isn’t your thing (we wouldn’t blame you), then you can always opt for T-Bell’s new Cinnabon Delights hot coffee or Cinnabon Delights iced coffee.

Illustration by Maggie Rossetti for Thrillist

3. McDonald’s

There’s something to be said for a chain that does the little things right. If you haven’t been to a McDonald’s drive-thru lately, you’re in for a treat. Pre-order your meal via the McD’s mobile app and when you select the option to pick it up in the drive-thru, you’ll get a code to give the employee. That’ll save Erin from getting the mobile order for Aaron. And the bag of food they hand you might also have your drink inside it, thanks to a clever cardboard insert that holds it upright.

Mickey D’s has been serving eggs and hotcakes since the ‘70s, and despite shelving All-Day Breakfast, there’s still plenty worth waking up early for. Many chains cram sweet and savory in one sandwich, but they end up looking like overstuffed suitcases and tasting like a mid-tier hotel breakfast buffet thrown in a blender. The McGriddle, however, is perfectly engineered—a buttery, meaty, cheesy sandwich you can eat while driving. The Egg McMuffin remains a top fast food breakfast sandwich, with a perfect ratio of egg, cheese and meat on a flawlessly toasted English muffin. And McDonald’s is an old dog with new tricks, as the Hot and Spicy McChicken Biscuit capitalizes on the chicken biscuit craze with a legitimately hot offering. McCafe provides all the lattes, iced coffees, and Frappuccino ripoffs you want at a fraction of the price. It all adds up to a fantastic breakfast.

Illustration by Maggie Rossetti for Thrillist

2. Chick-fil-A

If you know anything about Chick-fil-A it’s that it’s closed on Sunday, it’s made controversial donations in the past and, oh right, it has some of the best chicken and biscuits in fast food (no slight to Popeyes, which is also excellent… but it’s not open for breakfast). Strangely, Chick-fil-A’s breakfast has not garnered breathless praise like the rest of its menu. You might think that having limited menu options, serving breakfast until 10:30 am, and only being open six days a week would hurt its chances of ranking high on our list. But nope. The food is so good that we can safely say it’s among the best you can get.

The Hash Brown Scramble Burrito is a great place to start. Scrambled eggs, hash browns, chopped up chicken nuggets and cheese combine for a confusingly delicious start to the day. This burrito doesn’t need eggs at all—you can hardly taste them. But there’s so much satisfying, fried goodness to enjoy that it’s tough to complain.

The Chicken Biscuit is a special thing. Does it help that every location continually bakes biscuits all morning long, ensuring that you get one that emerged hot and fresh from the oven that morning? Yes. The Chick-fil-A Chicken Biscuit is adorned with nothing. It doesn’t have to be when all you need is perfectly fried chicken and a buttery biscuit for a couple bucks. Sometimes a chain doesn’t need a breakfast item with bells and whistles when the breakfast item is one giant bell and whistle.

Because every breakfast needs coffee, Chick-fil-A pours a solid hot java (we think it’s the second best in fast food), and some of the best iced coffee in the game, as well. It’s not quite the quality level of a third wave cup, but it’s certainly competitive with Starbucks cold brew or McDonald’s McCafe.

Let’s skip over the english muffins and biscuits with bacon/sausage, egg and cheese, the chicken, egg and cheese bagel or the Greek yogurt parfait. They’re all fine and dandy if you’re looking for something simple. But the most standout, unique item is the Chick-n-Minis. The mini yeast rolls that feature a honey butter spread are airy, sweet morsels that should go in the fast food hall of fame. Tiny, perfect chicken nuggets get placed in each roll, and the result is a breakfast food we didn’t know we needed every morning. 

Image by Maitane Romagosa and Chineme Elobuike for Thrillist

1. Wendy’s

Wendy’s huge, national breakfast menu launched at the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, and because that was the worst possible timing of a new product launch (and generally the worst possible time), it failed miserably. Just kidding. You would have thought, right? Instead, the geniuses at Wendy’s developed an incredible breakfast lineup that’s so damn creative and delicious, it actually gained the chain a ton of new customers. With options like classic sandwiches, biscuits sandwiches, croissant sandwiches, savory sides, sweet sides, coffee, and more, Wendy’s breakfast menu has something for just about any vibe—and we’re happy to say its the best breakfast in fast food right now. Let’s dive in.

The headliner menu item is the Breakfast Baconator, a big, breakfast-y twist on the regular menu staple. It’s like a burger crossed with brunch crossed with your friend daring you to try to finish it before 8 am. Wendy’s stacks them with sausage, two layers of bacon and cheese, a fried egg, and some hollandaise-Swiss cheese sauce for good measure. It’s… a lot. It might be a tad too hefty to eat with one hand in the car, but its size is by no means a con here. You’re gonna be full. And depending on what you did the night before, you might feel less hungover afterward.

Yes, the Breakfast Baconator is as great as it sounds, but it’s the breakfast chicken lineup where Wendy’s leaves other chains in the dust. The Maple Bacon Chicken Croissant is an absolute triumph: crispy fried chicken nestled in a soft, easy-to-eat croissant, and coated in a mind-blowing maple butter spread that every competitor should rip off immediately. The Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit also nails the sweet and savory duo by combining that delicious bird with a hint of sweetness on a buttery biscuit. Then there’s the Hot Honey Chicken Biscuit, which packs a level of heat that’s appropriate for an early morning meal with its eye-opening habanero hot honey sauce. 

Now let’s talk about the sides. While you can’t go wrong with a simple hash brown, Wendy’s has opted for Seasoned Potatoes—thick, natural-cut wedges seasoned with salt, black pepper, and garlic powder. They’re a hearty, satisfying choice for the hungriest of breakfast eaters, especially paired withe Breakfast Baconator. And on the opposite end of the sides spectrum, you’ll find the Oatmeal Bar and Apple Slices for grease-free options to round out your meal.

No matter what you get, you should wash it down with a genius Chocolate Frosty-ccino (cold brew coffee plus Frosty flavoring) that’s better tasting than 75% of Starbucks’ Frappuccinos. And way cheaper. Speaking of cheaper, Wendy’s routinely offers breakfast discounts and deals via its mobile app, which means there’s a good chance you can score the best fast food breakfast for less.

Fast Food Breakfast FAQ

What are the healthiest fast food breakfast options?
Sometimes, you have to grab breakfast on the run. That doesn’t mean you are ready to abandon your healthy eating goals, though. Here are the five healthiest fast food breakfast options according to a nutritionist with Eat This, Not That!

  • Starbucks’ Hearty Blueberry Oatmeal
  • McDonald’s Fruit and Maple Oatmeal
  • Dunkin’s Veggie Egg White Omelet

What time does McDonald’s stop serving breakfast?
At McDonald’s, breakfast is served between 5 am and 11 am, except on Fridays when it’s served until 11:30 am. As for other fast food chains, breakfast is typically served at Taco Bell between 7 am and 11 am. Wendy’s serves breakfast between 6 am and 10:30 am. Breakfast at Burger King is served until 10:30 am.

Do any fast food chains serve breakfast all day?
Only a few fast food chains serve breakfast all day, and as a breakfast enthusiast, that’s a bummer. Luckily, Jack in the Box, Bojangles, and Sonic Drive-In do offer all-day breakfast.

What’s the cheapest fast food breakfast?
Getting a cheap fast food breakfast isn’t too hard, especially if you’re trying to get a sandwich on the go. You can get a McDonald’s Sausage McMuffin from the breakfast value menu for $1.19, and an Egg & Cheese Biscuit for $1.39. At Wendy’s you can get a Sausage, Egg, & Cheese breakfast sandwich for 99 cents. The Burger King Sausage Biscuit comes in at under $2, but these prices tend to vary depending on location.

Which fast food chains have the best coffee?
You can’t go wrong with a cup from major coffee chains like Starbucks and Dunkin’, but it’s harder to find good coffee from, say, the burger chains. To help, we created a whole separate ranking of the best fast food coffees—check it out for the winner.

healthy fast food breakfast

Making time for a healthy breakfast when you have a busy schedule isn’t always possible. Sometimes, you may therefore find yourself at the closest drive-through, grabbing something on your way to work.

Fast food is often thought of as unhealthy, and for good reason — most options will cost you lots of calories, saturated fat, added sugar, and sodium. Fortunately, healthier choices are available.

We researched popular fast-food restaurants to find you 11 healthier fast-food breakfast options.

Starbucks spinach feta egg wrap
Photo Courtesy of Starbucks

1–2. Best low calorie

If you’re looking to monitor your calorie intake, there are several options out there.

These two breakfasts are both under 300 calories. Keep in mind, though, that they may not be as filling as a higher calorie meal. If you’d like, add a fruit cup for a few extra calories, nutrients, and filling fiber.

You’ll also notice a few other breakfasts on this list that fall under 300 calories.

1. Dunkin’ Donuts Veggie Egg White Omelet

The veggie egg white omelet is filled with healthy veggies and assembled with cheddar cheese on a multigrain thin. One serving contains (1):

  • Calories: 290
  • Fat: 13 grams
    • Saturated fat: 5 grams
  • Carbs: 27 grams
    • Fiber: 5 grams
    • Sugar: 4 grams
  • Protein: 17 grams
  • Sodium: 550 mg

2. McDonald’s Egg McMuffin with no butter

The Egg McMuffin is a popular breakfast choice, and if you order it without butter, it’s less than 300 calories. With butter, the calorie count of the sandwich is just a little higher at 310 calories. One Egg McMuffin without butter contains (2):

  • Calories: 280
  • Fat: 11 grams
    • Saturated fat: 4.5 grams
  • Carbs: 30 grams
    • Fiber: 2 grams
    • Sugar: 3 grams
  • Protein: 17 grams
  • Sodium: 750 mg

3–4. Best vegetarian

Avoiding meat can sometimes make ordering out more difficult, especially when also trying to get enough protein. These vegetarian meals include healthy veggies and plenty of protein from egg whites.

3. Panera Bread Avocado, Egg White, and Spinach Sandwich

This sandwich has a serving of spinach, as well as avocado, which has healthy fats and fiber that can help keep you feeling full for longer. One sandwich contains (3Trusted Source, 4):

  • Calories: 360
  • Fat: 14 grams
    • Saturated fat: 6 grams
  • Carbs: 39 grams
    • Fiber: 5 grams
    • Sugar: 5 grams
  • Protein: 19 grams
  • Sodium: 700 mg

4. Starbucks Spinach, Feta, and Egg White Wrap

This wrap is a little lower in calories, but still packs 20 grams of protein, another nutrient that can help keep you feeling full. The sodium is pretty high, though, so try to balance it out with lower sodium meals throughout the day (3Trusted Source).

Additionally, consider grabbing some fresh fruit along with your wrap to make it a more filling, balanced meal. One wrap contains (5):

  • Calories: 290
  • Fat: 8 grams
    • Saturated fat: 3.5 grams
  • Carbs: 34 grams
    • Fiber: 3 grams
    • Sugar: 5 grams
  • Protein: 20 grams
  • Sodium: 840 mg

5–6. Best oatmeal

Oatmeal is a great breakfast option because it’s packed with nutrients like filling fiber and other vitamins and minerals. The suggestions below are also appropriate for individuals looking for low sodium meals (6Trusted Source).

5. Panera Bread Steel Cut Oatmeal with Strawberries and Pecans

Steel cut oats are the least processed kind of oats. They contain slightly more protein and fiber than rolled oats.

Panera Bread’s steel cut oatmeal is topped with pecans and strawberries, which may help reduce your risk of heart disease and other conditions (7Trusted Source, 8Trusted Source).

One serving of Panera Bread’s steel cut oatmeal contains (9):

  • Calories: 360
  • Fat: 15 grams
    • Saturated fat: 2 grams
  • Carbs: 52 grams
    • Fiber: 9 grams
    • Sugar: 17 grams
  • Protein: 8 grams
  • Sodium: 150 mg

6. Starbucks Classic Oatmeal

This plain oatmeal is a perfect healthy base that you can jazz up however you’d like.

The oatmeal on its own is low in calories, so we recommend adding some fresh or dried fruit and nuts for added fiber and healthy fats to round out the meal. Without toppings, one serving of the oatmeal contains (10):

  • Calories: 160
  • Fat: 2.5 grams
    • Saturated fat: 0.5 grams
  • Carbs: 28 grams
    • Fiber: 4 grams
    • Sugar: 0 grams
  • Protein: 5 grams
  • Sodium: 125 mg

7–8. Best smoothie

Smoothies are super convenient for busy mornings, but they’re often loaded with sugar and empty calories. These fast-food smoothie orders include a good amount of protein without the added sugar, making for a filling, drinkable breakfast on the run.

7. Smoothie King Lean1 Vanilla

This smoothie gets its sweetness from bananas and includes both almonds and protein to make it a complete meal filled with healthy fats, fruit, and protein. It has just 22 grams of carbs, so if you’re limiting carbs, this can be a great choice.

If you’re not a fan of vanilla, the chocolate and strawberry versions of this smoothie have similar nutritional contents. Try adding spinach or kale for an extra boost of greens that you’re unlikely to even taste.

One 20-ounce (591-mL) vanilla smoothie contains (11):

  • Calories: 240
  • Fat: 10 grams
    • Saturated fat: 3 grams
  • Carbs: 22 grams
    • Fiber: 4 grams
    • Sugar: 8 grams
  • Protein: 21 grams
  • Sodium: 320 mg

8. Jamba Juice Protein Berry Workout Smoothie

Packed with berries and bananas, this smoothie comprises mostly natural sugars. It’s also low in fat and sodium.

As a bonus, this smoothie can be ordered with either whey or pea protein and is blended with soy milk, making it appropriate for plant-based diets. One 16-ounce (473-mL) smoothie contains (12):

  • Calories: 300
  • Fat: 1 gram
    • Saturated fat: 0 grams
  • Carbs: 52 grams
    • Fiber: 3 grams
    • Sugar: 41 grams
  • Protein: 19 grams
  • Sodium: 115 mg

Best high protein

9. Chick-Fil-A Egg White Grill

This sandwich not only includes egg whites but also chicken, bringing its protein content up to 26 grams. It’s also low in calories, so a fruit cup would be a great addition to round out this breakfast.

While calories are low and protein is high, the sodium content on this meal is high as well. Thus, try to balance it out with lower sodium meals throughout the rest of your day. One sandwich contains (13):

  • Calories: 290
  • Fat: 8 grams
    • Saturated fat: 3.5 grams
  • Carbs: 30 grams
    • Fiber: 1 gram
    • Sugar: 2 grams
  • Protein: 26 grams
  • Sodium: 980 mg

Best low fat

10. Starbucks Turkey Bacon, Cheddar, and Egg White Sandwich

Finding low fat options at fast-food restaurants can be a challenge, but conveniently, this breakfast sandwich matches the criteria. It’s even low in calories.

Also, Starbucks typically offers fresh fruit and yogurt items if you’d like to bulk this meal up while keeping it low fat. One sandwich contains (14):

  • Calories: 230
  • Fat: 5 grams
    • Saturated fat: 2.5 grams
  • Carbs: 28 grams
    • Fiber: 3 grams
    • Sugar: 2 grams
  • Protein: 17 grams
  • Sodium: 550 mg

Best low sodium

11. Chick-Fil-A Greek Yogurt Parfait

If you’re watching your sodium intake, this yogurt parfait might be a good choice, as it contains just 80 mg of sodium. While it’s the lowest sodium option on this list, a few others — like the Starbucks oatmeal and Jamba Juice smoothie — are also low in sodium.

This meal is higher in sugar content than some of the others, but note that natural sugars from the berries contribute to the total. One parfait contains (15):

  • Calories: 270
  • Fat: 9 grams
    • Saturated fat: 3.5 grams
  • Carbs: 36 grams
    • Fiber: 1 gram
    • Sugar: 26 grams
  • Protein: 13 grams
  • Sodium: 80 mg

How to order healthier fast food

Fast food is typically seen as unhealthy, but in today’s fast-paced world, it’s a convenient way to get a meal when you’re on the go. Here are some tips for ordering healthier.

Order fresh fruit

Most fast-food restaurants offer fresh fruit as a side, which is a more nutritious and filling option than sides like french fries or hash browns.

By enjoying fresh fruit with your fast-food breakfast meal, you add nutrients and fiber to your meal. The fiber can help you feel full for longer, especially if you choose one of the lower calorie options on this list.

Opt for protein and fiber

Because fiber and protein can be filling, it’s a good idea to choose meals that offer a good amount of both.

When ordering breakfast, high protein options can include eggs or egg whites, cheese, or yogurt. Fruits and nuts are good examples of high fiber breakfast ingredients.

Avoid sugary drinks

Some drinks on fast food menus can add a lot of sugar and empty calories to your order.

A simple way to save calories is to stick with water or unsweetened beverages, such as black coffee or tea, instead of milkshakes, sodas, sugar-sweetened iced coffees, or iced teas.

Prepare before you visit

Fast-food restaurants are required to provide nutritional information for their menu items, so if you have the time, try to identify some options before you hit the drive-through. This way, you can make an informed, healthy decision.

The bottom line

Whether you’re looking for oatmeal, sandwiches, smoothies, or something else, several fast-food breakfast options are available — and they aren’t all that unhealthy for you.

As a general rule, opt for foods that are high in protein, veggies, fiber, and fruit, and avoid those with lots of sodium, saturated fats, added sugar, and calories.

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