14.Salads - 2004 update
After spotting the ads claiming "even the salads are better at Hungry Jack's" we thought we should check them out.
We found that, without dressing, the garden and chicken salads from Hungry Jack's and McDonald's are pretty good choices. What makes the difference are the dressings.
While both chains dressings add a fair bit of salt, none of the dressings at McDonald's pumps up the fat as much as most of Hungry Jack's offerings. Hungry Jack's French dressing is a good low-fat choice, but its 1000 Island and Caesar dressings contain at least two teaspoons (10 grams) per serve.
If you want a chicken Caesar salad, McDonald's offers a low-fat Caesar dressing that keeps the fat down in it Chicken Caesar salad, and it compares well to even the undressed Hungry Jack's version.
Less fat, but still fattening
McDonald's is now offering some low-fat options. It claims its new Salads Plus menu offers "Food that is light yet high in taste - to leave you feeling good." But while definitely a step in the right direction with at least 60% less fat than a Big Mac, the new menu options can still load on the kilojoules.
The Roast Chicken Salad (with 872kJ) isn't a bad bet, but a Chicken Foldover packs 1836kJ, which is 33kJ more than a McChicken, and a Vege Burger has 1707 kJ, only about 340kJ less than a Big Mac.
And watch out for the extras. If you round off your Chicken Foldover with an orange poppy seed Muffin Lite (1634kJ) and wash it down with a medium Diet Coke (6 kJ) you're up for a total of 3476 kJ - which is already more than 60% of the daily 5600 kJ provided by the CSIRO'S Total Wellbeing Diet that's designed to help you lose weight.