Order This, Not That: Fast-Food Mexican

There are many healthy choices you can make when ordering Mexican fare. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of unhealthy choices you could potentially make as well. Here are top picks for popular Mexican hot spots, and also those options you should skip.

There are many healthy choices you can make when ordering Mexican fare. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of unhealthy choices you could potentially make too. Here are top picks for popular Mexican hot spots, as well as those options you should skip.

Order This:

Choose a burrito bowl with 1 serving of protein (chicken and steak have the least sodium), brown rice and tomato salsa, and opt for the healthy fat of guacamole.

Nutrition Info: 630 calories; 36 grams fat; 6.5 grams saturated fat; 38.5 grams protein; 45 grams carbohydrates; 1,060 milligrams sodium

Not This:

Be wary of what you put into your burrito. Adding all three high-fat toppers — guacamole, sour cream and cheese — can add a whopping 345 calories to your base items (flour tortilla, rice, beans, 1 protein choice). This can make the calorie count skyrocket to over 1,200 per burrito.

Nutrition Info (burrito with all add-ons): 1,275 calories; 65.5 grams fat; 19 grams saturated fat; 53.5 grams protein; 120 grams carbohydrates; 2,910 milligrams sodium

Order This:

How about a couple of soft tacos? One Fresco Chicken Soft Taco and one Beef Soft Taco is enough food for a meal. Pair it with a no- or low-calorie drink, like water or unsweetened iced tea, and you’ve got a sensible choice.

Nutrition Info: 330 calories; 12.5 grams fat; 5 grams saturated fat; 19 grams protein; 33 grams carbohydrates; 970 milligrams sodium

Not This:

The XXL Grilled Stuffed Beef Burrito may have the word “grilled” in the title, but that doesn’t mean the dish is low in calories, fat and sodium! This bad boy has the entire recommended daily amount of sodium packed into one item.

Nutrition Info: 830 calories; 34 grams fat; 11 grams saturated fat; 32 grams protein; 91 grams carbohydrates; 2,200 milligrams sodium

Del Taco
Order This:

Sometimes a burrito is calling your name. At Del Taco, you can opt for the Jacked Up Value Bean, Rice and Cheese Burrito, which has the fewest calories and the least sodium of the bunch. Don’t worry; it has a good amount of fiber (6 grams per burrito) and protein to keep you satisfied.

Nutrition Info: 280 calories; 8 grams fat; 3.5 grams saturated fat; 12 grams protein; 40 grams carbohydrates; 670 milligrams sodium

Not This:

With boatloads of calories, unhealthy carbs, sodium and fat, the Beef Macho Nachos are just not worth it. If you’re really craving them, split them with three (or four!) friends.

Nutrition Info: 960 calories; 49 grams fat; 14 grams saturated fat; 33 grams protein; 98 grams carbohydrates; 2,020 milligrams sodium

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. She is the author of The Greek Yogurt Kitchen: More Than 130 Delicious, Healthy Recipes for Every Meal of the Day.

Next Up

Fast-Food Salad Roundup

A roundup of the best fast-food salad choices.

Healthiest Fast Food Breakfasts

Check out these healthy breakfast options from your favorite chains.

Order This, Not That: Mall Foods

‘Tis the season for holiday shopping but don’t let a hectic trip to the mall lead to a Santa-like physique. Use our tips for more figure-friendly shopping snacks.

Taste Test: Fast Food Oatmeal

Oatmeal is the latest healthy food to hit fast food joints around the nation. We tested the most popular offerings see how your favorite stacked up. Is choosing oatmeal as a quick and easy breakfast really your best bet?

Healthiest Fast-Food Menu Items

Believe it or not, there ARE healthier options available at popular fast food joints.

Food Network Staffers Share Their Favorite Mail-Order Foods

These are the desserts, dinners and specialty groceries we can't get enough of.

Food News: Chains Offering Vegan Fast-Food Options

Convenience store 7-Eleven is now offering vegan meals, and there are vegan options at Johnny Rockets, PF Changs Pizza Hut and Dairy Queen, too.

Homemade Fast-Food Alternatives for Kids

Healthy alternatives to fast food that the kids will love.

Low-Calorie Fast-Food Menu Items

What should you order when you find yourself at a fast-food chain? We've identified meal and snack options with less than 500 calories each.