If you’re like most people, you probably have a pretty good idea of how many calories are in a chicken taco. But what if you’re not sure? If a burrito contains over 900 calories – and that’s before any appetizers, sides or drinks – it may seem like the calorie count is on the nose.
Misconceptions about nutrition often get perpetuated by certain media outlets, which often speak about calorie counts without presenting actual data. We want to make sure your meal isn’t just stuffed with “naturally occurring calories,” but also doesn’t include an emphasis on sugar and fat. That’s why we use real-world examples that are easy to interpret and understand.
We hope you find this infographic helpful!
The key to eating well at a Mexican restaurant is to focus on fresh ingredients and healthy toppings.
– 1 pound ground chicken (any kind of meat will do)
– 1/4 cup refried beans
– 1 cup salsa
– 1/2 tsp. cumin powder
– Pinch of cayenne pepper
– Pinch of chili powder
– 2 cups cooked taco rice (rice should be cooked but not mushy)
– 3 cups shredded lettuce (or any other greens)
– 2 to 3 limes, juiced (a lot of lime juice can be counterproductive) – Lime wedges are optional but recommended to enhance fresh flavor and brightness. The juice from one lime is more than enough for 4 tacos. However, depending on the preferences of your taste buds, you may want to add a little extra lime juice to your tacos. Some people like it sweeter while others prefer a bit more tartness. If you are an adventurous eater, feel free to add a little hot sauce or liquid smoke too! Next time you go out for Mexican food, make sure that it includes some fresh ingredients! Can’t find this recipe? Try one of our other taco recipes: Grilled Corn Tacos with Jalapeños and Onions grilled Chicken Tacos with Green Chile Sauce grilled Black Bean Tacos with Cilantro Lime Slaw grilled Sausage and Avocado Tacos grilled Chicken Tacos
Start with a base of veggies, like a side salad or black bean soup, and add meat or another protein source.
It’s a simple thing to do, but it’s actually very hard to do well. One of the most common mistakes is underestimating the calories in a taco. The average person gobbles down a full taco with just about five minutes left in their lunch break, which means they probably don’t realize half the calories are in things like sour cream and guacamole.
Let’s look at one example: The USDA recommends that adults should consume no more than 1,500 calories per day, meaning a single chicken burrito (a 500 calorie meal) should not be overburdened with calories. But here are some of the worst offenders from that study:
• The average Taco Bell taco packs in as many as 3,300 calories (but only 30 grams of protein and 185 grams of carbs)
• A single meaty taco from Chipotle packs in nearly 4,000 calories (but only 30 grams of protein and less than 225 grams of carbs)
• A turkey taco from the local fast food chain packs in almost 6,000 calories (but only 35 grams of protein and 230 grams of carbs)
If you want to avoid other types of foods with too much fat or sugar – like candy bars and fried foods – you can choose healthier alternatives. Many restaurants have nutrition info on their menus so you can pick something that fits into your diet instead of adding yet more meat into your body weight.
Choose salsa over guacamole, which is made with high
I recently stumbled upon an article called “how many calories in a chicken taco” and it made me think about the nutritional content of many foods. While this may not seem like a big deal to most people, I’ll tell you why it is worth some thought:
If we look at just one item (usually called a ‘taco’) the numbers are staggering. A few tacos can easily push 100-300 calories each, for 400-600 mg sodium and more than 1,500 mg of potassium. That’s not counting any toppings or sauces! If you’re trying to eat healthier there are simple ways to achieve that while still being able to have a satisfying meal. Here are some of our favorites…
1.) The Ultimate Taco: Our family loves the classic meat taco with mayo and salsa on top. We usually add (or don’t) guacamole, sour cream and jalapeño peppers. See what we do? We combine flavors that aren’t necessarily spicy but work well together…
2.) Chicken Enchilada: Another favorite at our house is an enchilada with chicken and tomatoes on top. You can use either ground or grilled chicken if steamed first, or even leftover rotisserie chicken from your local deli or grocery store. If you want to go super health-conscious, skip the cheese but choose cheddar instead for added calcium and protein.
3.) Bean Burrito: Beans are high in fiber and protein so make sure you use whole beans from a local source (we love Trader Joe’s!) when cooking this burrito (and feel free to add any other ingredients). For extra fiber, you could go with cooked quinoa instead of regular rice which is high in fiber too!
4.) Chorizo Quesadilla: This one is fairly easy since most people can cook their own chorizo. However, if you want a less-spicy way to get your iron in you can use canned beans; by simmering them with plenty of water they lose their spiciness while adding tons of fiber as well as iron and protein… Then dunk your tortilla in guacamole instead of bringing it directly onto your mouth…