"Fast food" and "healthy" are words that are rarely used in the same sentence.
When most folks decide to order from quick-service chains, convenience is often the primary concern. Sure, going to establishments like McDonald’s might mean we have to consume a few more calories than we'd like, but it’s the price that has to be paid for getting our order in a timely manner–or is it?
Believe it or not, despite the stigma associated with fast food, there are actually a surprising number of items that don’t require diners to consume a day’s worth of calories in a single sitting. Of course, foods like triple bacon cheeseburgers are every bit as bad as their reputation. That being said, for those willing to look hard enough, there are plenty of burgers and other sandwiches that are available on the go and that are aren’t awful–as far as calorie count goes at least.
In fact, at many restaurants that specialize in quick-service food, one can usually find a tasty sandwich that has 350 calories or less–and we aren’t talking about plain hamburgers either. Whatever one’s favorite fast-food restaurant is, more than likely, there's at least one solid option that'll keep diners comfortably below the 500-calorie mark.
With that in mind, we're going to take a look at 20 fast-food sandwiches that have 350 calories or less. This list proves that eating on the go doesn’t mean you have to eat sandwiches with 1,000 calories.
20 McDonald's: BBQ Ranch Burger (350)
When one hears the word “fast food,” McDonald’s is likely one of the first restaurants that come to mind. After all, Mickey D’s in one of the most recognized brands in the world. Moreover, they also have several sandwiches that are 350 calories or less.
Given the ingredients in the name of the sandwich, some folks may be surprised to learn that the Barbeque Ranch Burger has only 350 calories. That right—one can get a burger that features melted cheddar cheese, BBQ sauce, and tortilla strips without having to worry about consuming an absurd number or calories—not a bad find.
19 Burger King: Whopper Jr. (310)
The sandwich most often associated with the fast-food chain Burger King is the flame-broiled Whopper. Those who enjoy a hearty chunk of beef can likely appreciate BK’s signature menu item. While the Whopper is defiantly a fan favorite, with around 677 calories a serving, it doesn’t qualify for our list.
Fortunately, for calorie-conscious Whopper lovers, we have the Whopper Jr. As the name implies, the Whopper Jr. is basically just a smaller version of the original. Moreover, it also has far fewer calories. A Whopper Jr. sandwich has about half the number of calories as its famous parent—310 to be exact.
18 Wendy’s: Crispy Chicken Sandwich (330)
Like their biggest competitors, McDonald’s and Burger King, fast food giant Wendy’s has a few items that fall below the 350-calorie mark. They have the Jr. Cheeseburger (280) and the Jr. Cheeseburger Deluxe (340), which are both viable options for those looking to cut down on calories. However, for those looking beyond basic hamburgers and cheeseburgers, they also have the Crispy Chicken Sandwich.
It’s important not to confuse the Crispy Chicken Sandwich with the Spicy Chicken Sandwich, as the latter has around 510 calories. However, the lightly breaded crispy version has only 330 calories, making it one of the rare items that feature fried chicken and that’s also able to qualify for our list.
17 Hardee’s: Hot Ham ‘N’ Cheese (280)
Though they're known primarily as a burger joint, Hardee’s has several options for those who are craving lunch meat. Best of all, these burger alternatives have surprisingly low calorie counts. Outside of their signature roast beef sandwiches, Hardee’s also offer their popular Hot Ham ‘N’ Cheese Sandwich.
Despite being primarily made of ham and cheese, two ingredients that aren’t known to be particularly healthy, this sandwich is only 280 calories per serving (1 sandwich). That being said, if you order them as part of the meal deal, which features fries and sometimes multiple sandwiches, expect the calorie count to go up very quickly.
16 McDonald's: Grilled Onion Cheddar Burger (310)
McDonald’s is known for many things, but being a restaurant with low-calorie menu items isn’t one of them. That being said, there are some solid sandwiches that fall below the 350-calorie mark—for those who are willing to look beyond the Big Mac.
Folks looking to enjoy some Mickey D’s and also keep their calorie count in check may want to take a look at the Grilled Onion Cheddar Burger. Those who enjoy melted cheddar cheese and caramelized onion with their all-beef patty will be pleased to learn that the Grilled Onion Cheddar Burger only has 310 calories per single sandwich serving.
15 Subway: 6-inch Rotisserie-Style Chicken (350)
As anyone who's seen their commercials over the years knows, Subway offers a variety of low-calorie menu items. While there are plenty of less-than-healthy menu items at Subway, they also have several low-calorie options, as advertised. Of course, the sandwich maker encourages customers to customize their orders, so don’t add too many ingredients like mayonnaise and cheese if you're looking to keep the calorie count low.
The Rotisserie-Style Chicken sandwich is an option for those looking to avoid going over the 350-calorie mark. The sandwich features hand-pulled chicken and crispy veggies for a total of 350 calories.
14 Burger King: Bacon Cheeseburger (320)
Burger King is one of the most popular quick-service restaurants in the game. However, one doesn’t have to consume a king’s ransom worth of calories in order to enjoy a tasty sandwich at this fine establishment. Moreover, a person can even get a sandwich with bacon and stay under 350 calories.
That’s right—Burger King’s Bacon Cheeseburger is an item with fewer than 350 calories—320 to be exact. Those looking to keep it light don’t have to skip out on tasty ingredients like smoked bacon and American cheese. As burgers go, this is one of the heartier-looking options on our list.
13 White Castle: Fish Slider (340)
White Castle is a great option for folks who want to enjoy a smaller version of some of their fast-food favorites. This makes it an ideal place to find mini versions of sandwiches that otherwise wouldn’t be under the 350-calorie mark. For example, White Castle is one of the few (perhaps the only) places where one can get a fried fish sandwich that’s less than 350 calories.
Sure, a single White Castle Fish Slider, which is 340 calories, probably won’t be enough to fill anyone up. That being said, it’s an option for those who just want a taste of fried fish without consuming 500 calories or more.
12 Subway: 6-inch Roast Beef (320)
Usually, when folks are looking for low-calorie lunch meat, turkey gets most of the attention. However, as those who frequent Subway know, there are several different relatively healthy sandwiches that don’t feature the popular Thanksgiving meat. In fact, some might even be surprised to discover that their 6-inch roast beef sandwich has less than 350 calories.
Those who enjoy a good roast beef sandwich may be pleased to discover that Subway's 6-inch version only comes with 320 calories. Calorie counters who are getting a little burnt out on turkey may find some interesting options on the fast-food giant’s menu, such as the sandwich shown here.
11 Burger King: Double Hamburger (350)
For fast-food fans who are worried about calories, the plain hamburger is usually a safe bet. The problem is that a regular hamburger isn’t very filling, and who wants to leave a quick service (or any other kind of) restaurant hungry? Fortunately, Burger King has a heartier option for folks who are looking to keep their calorie counts in check and avoid going home hungry.
What’s better than one all-beef patty? The answer is two all-beef patties, which is exactly what folks who order BK’s Double Hamburger are in store for. They're also in store for around 350 calories per single sandwich serving.
10 Chick-fil-A: Grilled Chicken Sandwich (310)
Of all the fast-food chains out there, one would be hard-pressed to find an establishment with a more fanatical following than Chick-fil-A. People who like Chick-fil-A swear by it and can’t ever seem to get enough. Unfortunately, for low-calorie enthusiasts, Chick-fil-A doesn’t have a ton of options that are less than 350. After all, their specialty is fried chicken, which, despite being delicious, isn’t a low-calorie food. However, those who enjoy their chicken grilled can still go to Chick-fil-A and avoid going over the 350 calorie threshold.
Chick-fil-A’s Grilled Chicken Sandwich is a healthy (or at least a healthier) alternative to its fried counterpart. A single sandwich is only 310 calories.
9 Hardee’s: Charbroiled BBQ Chicken Sandwich (350)
Hardee’s is a restaurant that’s known for their giant burgers, many of which are over 1,000 calories each. However, despite their reputation, the fast-food chain has several sandwiches with fewer than 350 calories. Those who aren’t looking for a burger can find plenty of relatively healthy options at Hardee’s–like the Charbroiled BBQ Chicken Sandwich.
The Charbroiled BBQ Chicken Sandwich barley makes the cut at 350 calories per sandwich. However, it also happens to be one of the largest items on our list–so it can actually be eaten as a meal–as opposed to a snack or some type of appetizer.
8 Subway: 6-inch Subway Club (310)
Trying to create a low-calorie sandwich often means the person who's making it has to stick with one type of meat. After all, there aren’t a lot of lean lunch meats out there these days–especially ones that taste halfway decent. While Subway may not be the sexiest dining experience, they've come up with several different items that are well below the 350-calorie mark and even have a solid option for folks who want more than a single type of cold cut on their sandwich.
The 6-inch Subway Club features turkey, roast beef, and Black Forest ham—all for a total of 310 calories.
7 Subway: Veggie Delight (230)
In most cases, sandwiches that feature a variety of vegetables tend to have fewer calories than items that are loaded with meat. That being said, it’s never safe to simply judge a book by its cover. For example, despite being a “veggie sub,” Jimmy John’s Veggie Club, 8-inch Original comes loaded with 1,020 calories. Fortunately, for health-conscious vegetarians out there, Subway has an option with far fewer calories than Jimmy John’s version of the veggie sub.
Subway’s Veggie Delight has only 230 calories total. The Veggie Delight is basically just a pile of all the vegetables they offer between two slices of bread, but it’s definitely a low-calorie option.
6 Panera Bread: Heritage Ham & Swiss Sandwich on Country Rustic (300)
Panera Bread is another excellent example of a quick service chain that offers several relatively low-calorie menu option. Those looking to enjoy a sandwich for under 350 calories have some interesting options to choose from when visiting Panera Bread. One such option is their Heritage Ham and Swiss Sandwich on Country Rustic Bread.
For Panera fans out there, this sandwich is a great way to enjoy ham and swiss cheese without having to worry about expanding the waistline too much. Panera Bread offers a calorie range for their items, and on the low end, this sandwich has around 300.
5 White Castle: Plain Veggie Slider (150)
White Castle’s sliders are often very tasty, but if you consume too many in a single sitting, the calorie count can add up pretty quickly. That being said, especially given the size of their sandwiches, White Castle has plenty of menu items that are under 350 calories. To be fair, a single slider isn’t enough food for most people. However, those who like White Castle’s Plain Veggie Slider can enjoy 3 of them and still not go over the 350-calorie line.
That’s right—and a single Plain Veggie Slider is only 150 calories, so eating more than one is a great deal for all you calorie counters out there.
4 Panera Bread: Turkey Sandwich (270)
Sometimes, when it comes to living a low-calorie lifestyle, being creative can be overrated. The Turkey sandwich is hardly a new and/or innovative menu item. However, more often than not, these sandwiches are usually pretty light on calories and can be pretty tasty, depending on how they're made (and by whom).
One place that offers folks a low-calorie turkey sandwich is Panera Bread. The Panera Bread Turkey Sandwich only has 270 calories per single sandwich serving. The Turkey Sandwich is just one of the many menu items that the popular chain offers and that's under the 350-calorie line.
3 Hardee’s: Regular Roast Beef Sandwich (300)
Sub shops aren’t the only place one can expect to find a roast beef sandwich for under 350 calories. Believe it or not, of all places, Hardee’s version of the roast beef sandwich doesn’t have very many calories at all–especially compared to some of the other items on their menu.
Hardee’s Regular Roast Beef Sandwich is a 300-calorie item. However, those concerned with their caloric intake should make sure they're ordering the “Regular” Roast Beef Sandwich as opposed to the "Big" Roast Beef Sandwich. The Big Roast Beef Sandwich will set you back around 500 calories–so there's quite a difference.
2 White Castle: Bacon Jalapeno Cheese Slider (210)
Who would've thought one could eat a bacon jalapeno cheeseburger and consume fewer than 350 calories? Well, those who frequent White Castle can do just that. Sure, it’s technically a slider and is significantly smaller than a stander fast-food hamburger. Still, it offers a way for dieters to satisfy their fast-food craving without seeing their daily calorie totals skyrocket.
The name "Bacon Jalapeno Cheese Slider" sums up all the ingredients in this tasty little burger quite well. Surprisingly, despite the fact that it has both bacon and cheese in it, the Bacon Jalapeno Cheese Sliders are only 210 calories each.
1 Panera Bread: Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich on Tomato Basil (220)
It seems like there's no shortage of fast-food restaurants that serve at least some type of veggie sandwich. After all, there are plenty of vegetarians out there who obviously don’t care for hearty burgers or lunch meat. Fortunately for vegetarians, these days, the veggie sandwich is no longer a throwaway menu item geared toward folks who are being reluctantly dragged to a quick service establishment.
Panera’s Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich on Tomato Basil is a unique take on the popular staple. Perhaps best of all, at least for folks who are counting calories, this sandwich only has 220 of them.