Healthy Fast Food? That’s a thing?
We all try our best to ensure that our children eat healthy and from all food groups.
Sometimes though, fast food it is!
It doesn’t need to guilt us though.
We’ve compiled some healthy choices from the experts and our personal healthy fast food go to’s!
These are our top ten picks (in no particular order. I know, I know, I said top-ten…) of kid-friendly, healthy choices!
McDonald’s has come a long way over the years.
Pop is no longer an option for Happy Meals so gone are those empty sugary calories.
A 4 piece chicken nugget kid’s meal paired with apples, go-gurt, and milk is a decently healthy choice!
Winner winner Wendy’s Chicken Tender dinner!
The two-piece chicken tender meal with a side of apple slices and milk is comparable to McDonald’s and you can feel good about the protein from the chicken and fiber content from the apple slices.
#3 Taco Bell
You may be surprised to hear that Taco Bell isn’t all that terrible.
Okay, yes you can do better at home, but a chicken taco is a pretty good meal on its own.
There are less fat and sodium in a chicken taco than in their quesadilla.
Want to cut down on the carb content?
Order a crunchy shell.
Subway has had its ups and downs, but their Turkey sub with vegetables is practically a salad.
Just steer clear of extra sauces.
While I personally love their sweet onion sauce - it’s a lot of sugar.
Pair a kid’s size sub with turkey, ham, or roast beef loaded up with veg and milk!
#5 Boston Market
You can get a kids meal here, but it’s better to skip that altogether.
Instead, try a quarter white skinless rotisserie chicken paired with green beans or steamed vegetables.
That’s pretty well-rounded and breaks up the mac n cheese routine.
Did someone say grilled chicken?
You bet we did!
Chick-fil-a offers grilled chicken nuggets which significantly reduce fat and calories.
Bonus that they have a fruit cup so you’re not limited to apple slices.
Again, sauces are where the downfalls lie. T
hey’re loaded with empty calories.
#7 Dunkin Donuts
We’ve hit a lot of dinner and lunch fast food trips, but let’s be real.
A lot of the time we’re rushing to work or some other errand and it’s during breakfast time.
Rather than deprive ourselves of our morning coffee stop in and caffeinate and feed your littles!
My kids love wraps and anything else that resembles a taco so the wake-up wrap is perfect.
Skip the bacon if you want to avoid extra fat and calories.
But hey, if you’ve managed to deter them from the donuts I’d call that a win.
#8 Burger King
Baby Yoda loves “chicken nuggies” and so do our kiddos.
Thankfully, this is a relatively healthy fast food component and the nuggets at Burger King are no different.
Just keep in mind the many of the sauces are where the nutritionally empty calories lie.
A Jr. Chicken nuggets kids meal with applesauce and milk is perf!
KFC actually has a few healthy options! And some of them are-you guessed it, grilled!
Grab a grilled drumstick, green beans, applesauce, and a Capri Sun.
KFC is nearly the only chain offering a green vegetable side.
Don’t skip this one!
I don’t know about you, but if someone says Panera I’m not about to say no.
All but one of my kiddos will straight up refuse a salad and if that sounds like your child all is not lost.
While you should skip the grilled cheese or mac n cheese I’d go with one of their kids’ turkey chili, turkey sandwich.
Just keep your kids away from the pastry case and I’d call it a win.
Conclusion - Healthy Fast Food
Sometimes fast food is a necessity, creature comfort, or just an addition to our weekly schedule.
Finding the right fast food for your kid is extremely important.
The easiest way to do this is to check the calories and options on your phone and always try to stick to the kids meal as the portions are much smaller - although sometimes I eat a Happy Meal for a meal ;)
If you’re not convinced that fast food is in fact a healthy option or you have food restrictions, Planet Wise makes it easy and convenient to pack up food on the go.
Your child will love the fun prints and colors that sandwich bags come in and you’ll love that they’re completely washable and reusable.
I'm serious - these things are the bees knees. They fill my fridge and freezer and look so much better than old Tupperware.