With so many people these days overweight or worried about their cardio health, it’s imperative that they ought to worry about what they eat. That means we can no longer ignore the nutritional information when deciding what to eat.
That’s especially true when you get to Popeyes. Yes, the taste of the chicken is out of this world wonderful. Yes, the biscuit is just about perfect, at least when it comes to how delicious each one is.
But Popeyes is in fact among the fast-brands that won’t even pay lip service to the notion of healthy menu items. Even some of their relatively “healthy” options are bad compared to what you can get elsewhere.
But if some of the menu items are bad for you, some are just downright terrible. So, to at least minimize the damage, here are the items that you should just avoid if you don’t want to mess with your health:
12-Piece Tenders Meal
You can actually order just 3 or even 5 pieces of chicken tenders for your solo tender dinner. But the Popeyes chicken is just so darn yummy that it’s easy to just eat, and eat, and eat.
That’s why we put in the 12-Piece Tenders Meal. Ideally, this should be enough for an entire family. But it’s common enough for a single person to gobble the entire thing. The meal includes 4 sauces, 2 large order of sides, and 6 hot buttermilk biscuits.
And with this meal, you get 2,847 calories with 738g of fat, along with 51g of saturated fat and 6g of trans fat. Then there’s the sodium level, with an almost inhuman (and inhumane) level of 9,480mg. That’s just too much, especially for just one or two diners.
Even if you go with the relatively more reasonable 5-piece tender dinner, you still end up with more than a thousand calories (1,186 calories). And you have a humungous 3,035mg of sodium to deal with. When you factor in the fries that’s part of the meal, you also add another 587mg of sodium.
If you do insist on having 12 pieces of chicken tenders, then divvy up the meal between perhaps 4 people. That should limit the calorie intake, although the 2,370mg of sodium is still too much.
Fish ‘n Chicks Sandwich Bundle
This was released in 2021, and it’s meant for 2 people. After all, the bundle came with 2 small drinks. And you also have the Cajun Flounder Sandwich, paired with either the Classic or Spicy Chicken sandwich. You also get 2 regular sides.
It’s a tasty choice to be sure. The Cajun Flounder sandwich gives you a brioche bun, and in between you get the crispy flounder fish fillet coated in a Cajun-spiced crispy panko breading. That’s topped with the tartar sauce and two pickles.
The chicken sandwich features the battered and fried chicken in the brioche bun, with sliced pickles and mayo.
The grand total comes to 1,728 calories, 26g of saturated fat, and 4,272mg of sodium. And if that’s not bad enough, you also get the 62g of sugar.
Even if you divide these numbers by 2, you still end up with 864 calories, 13g of saturated fat, 2,136mg of sodium, and 31g of sugar. There’s no way that this is healthy.
You want to get a healthy side order? Stick to coleslaw. What you don’t want to do is to go with the Cajun Fries, regardless of how delicious those fries are.
That’s because a regular order of these fries saddles you with 268 calories and 5g saturated fat. Factor in the 587mg of sodium, and it’s perhaps the worst side order in the entire Popeyes menu.
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy
The calorie level isn’t actually all that bad, at 110 calories. As sides go, that’s not really terrible. But you still get 590mg of sodium, and the 2g of saturated fat. When you add this to your chicken order, everything’s just not healthy.
Large Combo Boxes
Speaking of everything’s just not healthy, we have the large combo boxes. A quick look at the Popeyes menu here will show you that plenty of the options here aren’t exactly meant to make your doctor smile. But you can minimize the damage to your health with some sensible moderation.
With the large combo boxes, moderation goes out the window. Instead of just having one unhealthy item as part of the meal, often you get an All-Star cast of all the unhealthiest items in one single order. You get the chicken tenders, Cajun fries, and biscuit as well.
Consider that you’re also getting the large combo boxes, and the quantity along with the quality really makes these options just bad choices all around. You get too many calories along with too much sodium, saturated fat, and even sugar to make this anything but just bad for your health.