We've waxed on about the healthiest burgers and breakfasts to order when you're chowing down on some fast food. We've even covered the healthiest salads, because those things can be silent killers. But we know what you're really interested in hearing: That it's OK to have a little dessert. And it is … if you choose wisely. As luck would have it, every restaurant's most popular treats are usually their most indulgent (we're looking at you McFlurry), but we found a handful of sweets that won't have you nursing a wicked food baby later in the day.
This probably won't be the tastiest slice of cheesecake you've ever had (we've got you covered on that front), but it also won't completely derail your diet. It has just 290 calories and only 21 grams of sugar - a relative win for fast food sweets. If you focus on the strawberry swirl on top, you can almost convince yourself you're just eating fruit for dessert.
It's near impossible to visit Wendy's without indulging in a Frosty (what would you dip your fries in?!), so keep this in mind when you do: Simple is best. We're talking vanilla instead of chocolate, which has more calories, and Jr.-sized. Yes, that's off the kids menu, and you can thank us later for saving you 500 calories and 10 grams of fat. The mini-me version has only 190 calories and 5 grams of fat.
Wish all you will, but a McFlurry isn't scoring a spot on this list. The machines are always broken, anyway. What you can comfortably indulge in after a Big Mac is an oatmeal raisin cookie. Mickey D's treat has 140 calories and only 12 grams of sugar. Looks like everyone's mom's favorite cookie actually is worth eating.
The teeny, tiny Cinnabon Delights look a lot more glutinous than they actually are. They're like donut holes filled with icing, and a two-pack shockingly has only 160 calories, 10 grams of sugar, and 9 grams of fat. Taco Bell's Cinnamon Twists are a close second with 170 calories, 12 grams of sugar, and 6 grams of fat.
Every single dessert at Arby's is packed with sugar, but the vanilla shake might be one of the least offensive. The snack size has 37 grams (compared to the chocolate and jamocha, which each have 50 grams). And with just 250 calories, it won't completely deplete you allotment for the day.
Pret A Manger
The ingredients list of Pret's Harvest Cookie sounds like something your grandma would be thrilled to feed you: cranberries, walnuts, raisins, and rolled oats. It's essentially a loaded oatmeal raisin cookie, but with 5 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber, it's not a total waste of calories. (There are 280 in the cookie, by the way.)
Popeye himself would probably tell you to go for that second serving of spinach if you're still hungry after a meal, but we'll tell you it's alright to have a slice of the his namesake chain's Hot Cinnamon Apple Pie. With 320 calories, it's not the least caloric (that title goes to the Mississippi Mud Pie, with 280), but it has only 12 grams of sugar - less than half of what the mud pie has. It's also got less than a third of the fat (6 grams) that Popeyes' pecan and sweet potato pies do.
A dipped cone is to DQ what pancakes are to IHOP: a must-order. Same goes for a Blizzard. But the two aren't exactly waistline-friendly. If you're okay with bucking tradition, try the no sugar added DQ Fudge Bar, which has just 50 calories and is fat-free. If you absolutely must have a Blizzard, opt for the banana split flavor - mini-sized, obvi. The 280 calorie treat has less grams of fat and sugar that any other variety: 8 and 39 grams, respectively.
We credit the coffee giant for making scones seem worthwhile again. (They weren't always the hottest pastry on the block.) Their petite vanilla bean scone has just 120 calories, 8 grams of sugar, and 4.5 grams of fat. Two, please!
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