Skip To Content

    23 Fast-Food Breakfasts That Are Actually Healthy

    Because life happens, and the drive-through can definitely be better than nothing.

    In an ideal world, you'd eat nutrient-dense, unprocessed food that you prepare yourself for every meal. But this isn't an ideal world. It's the real world.

    Sometimes you're in a damn rush, and you don't have any food in the house, and you have a million things to do, and you basically have only two choices: Starve until lunch, or hit up a fast-food restaurant. And if you're hungry, you should eat.

    Here's the thing to remember: Eating fast-food on occasion isn't going to destroy your health or ruin everything. Especially if you aim to eat the healthiest things on the menu.

    But what does it mean to eat a "healthy" fast-food breakfast, anyway?

    1. Starbucks

    Starbucks has a good selection of healthy breakfast options outside of their bakery. Look toward the egg-based meals, or even expand out into the bistro boxes (which are usually thought of as snacks or lunches, but can definitely also work for breakfast). There's also a line of yogurt parfaits, but those come with over 20 grams of sugar each – so if you're trying to cut back on your sugar intake, you probably want to skip them.

    Spinach & Feta Breakfast Wrap (vegetarian) (pictured above left)

    290 calories

    19 g protein

    10 g fat (3.5 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    830 mg sodium

    33 g carbohydrates (6 g fiber, 4 g sugar)

    Protein Bistro Box (vegetarian) (pictured above right)

    380 calories

    13 g protein

    19 g fat (6 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    470 mg sodium

    37 g carbohydrates (5 g fiber, 19 g sugar)

    See all nutrition info for Starbucks here.

    2. Subway

    3. Panera Bread

    Panera has a number of solid choices on their breakfast menu; and if you don't like eggs or oatmeal, a whole grain or sprouted grain bagel with cream cheese would also roughly fit into the guidelines above (it would come in above 400 calories, but not by much).

    Steel Cut Oatmeal with Strawberries and Pecans (vegetarian) (pictured above left)

    340 calories

    6 g protein

    14 g fat (2 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    160 mg sodium

    51 g carbohydrates (9 g fiber, 16 g sugar)

    Avocado, Egg White & Spinach Breakfast Power Sandwich (vegetarian) (pictured above right)

    400 calories

    12 g protein

    13 g fat (6 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    650 mg sodium

    52 g carbohydrates (5 g fiber, 5 g sugar)

    See Panera Bread's full nutrition info here.

    4. McDonald's

    5. Taco Bell

    There's not much on the breakfast menu that comes in under 1,000 milligrams of sodium, unfortunately. The Biscuit Tacos are all in the right range, though (choose from the sausage egg and cheese, the sausage and cheese, and the egg and cheese). Grilled Breakfast Burritos and a few of the A.M. Grilled Tacos also generally fit our parameters.

    Sausage and Cheese Biscuit Taco (pictured above left)

    370 calories

    14 g protein

    23 g fat (10 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    640 mg sodium

    29 g carbohydrates (1 g fiber, 7 g sugar)

    Grilled Breakfast Burrito - Fiesta Potato (vegetarian) (pictured above right)

    340 calories

    10 g protein

    15 g fat (3.5 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    790 mg sodium

    43 g carbohydrates (3 g fiber, 3 g sugar)

    See Taco Bell's breakfast menu nutrition info here.

    6. Dunkin' Donuts

    7. Burger King

    8. Hardee's

    9. Caribou Coffee

    Stick with the oatmeal options and breakfast sandwiches and you'll have an easier time staying within the limits we outlined above. In fact, some of the mini breakfast sandwiches are so mini that you can order two and still come in under 400 calories.

    Blueberry Almond Oatmeal (vegetarian) (pictured above left)

    340 calories

    16 g protein

    8 g fat (0.5 g saturated, 0 g trans)

    210 mg sodium

    54 g carbohydrates (9 g fiber, 13 g sugar)

    TWO Spinach, Egg, and Swiss Minis (vegetarian) (pictured above right)

    380 calories

    16 g protein

    20 g fat (7 g saturated)

    520 mg sodium

    32 g carbohydrates (2 g fiber, 2 g sugar)

    See all nutrition info for Caribou Coffee here.

    10. Pret A Manger

    11. Quiznos

    12. Au Bon Pain