We all know that a juicy burger is probably not the healthiest food choice when you’re on a diet — but let’s face it, everyone needs their fast food fix every once in a while. So we decided to look into the lesser evils of some of America’s favorite fast food chains to find five tasty burgers that don’t break the calorie bank.
1. Burger King
- Our Pick: Hamburger, 260 Calories, 10 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, 27 grams of carbohydrates, 13 grams of protein
Ringing in at under 300 calories, this flame-broiled patty on a sesame-seed bun includes pickles, ketchup and mustard. Add some lettuce, tomato and onion for only 10 calories more and you’ve got yourself a delicious burger. But make sure to pass on the mayo — adding this topping puts on an extra 160 calories.
- Our Pick: Cheesy Cheddarburger, 300 Calories, 15 grams of fat, 7 grams of saturated fat, 24 grams of carbohydrates, 18 grams of protein
Based on its abundance of cheese, you wouldn’t think a Cheesy Cheddarburger from Wendy's would be one of the healthier burger options on the menu, but it’s only 300 calories. Topped with one slice of American cheese and a delicious cheddar cheese sauce, it’s pretty tasty. Add on some lettuce, tomatoes and pickles for only 10 more calories.
3. White Castle
- Our Pick: Double Jalapeño Cheeseburger, 280 Calories, 17 grams of fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 21 grams of carbohydrates, 15 grams of protein
Famous for their square sliders, White Castle has a ton of low-calorie burger options. But a single slider usually isn’t enough to satisfy the average consumer, which is why we picked the Double Jalapeño Cheeseburger. It’s got a spicy kick without breaking the calorie bank. Skip on adding bacon; one strip equals 60 calories. Yikes!
4. Jack in the Box
- Our Pick: Hamburger Deluxe with no mayo-onion sauce, 281 Calories, 10 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, 33 grams of carbohydrates, 13 grams of protein
Although Jack in the Box's mayo-onion sauce is delicious, subtracting this 44-calorie topping puts their Hamburger Deluxe on our list. Low in saturated fat compared to other fast food options, this burger choice is one of the healthier sandwich options on their menu.
- Our Pick: Hamburger, 250 Calories, 9 grams of fat, 3.5 grams of saturated fat, 31 grams of carbohydrates, 12 grams of protein
No fast food list is complete without McDonald's! Their plain hamburger with a regular bun, ketchup, mustard, pickles and onions totals out to only 250 calories. This is quite low compared to their 540-calorie Big Mac. Although it's higher in carbohydrates than Burger King's counterpart, it does have one fewer gram of fat.