Bagels often get a bad rap for being high in calories and carbohydrates. However, it’s possible to include bagels in a well-balanced diet by paying attention to the toppings and opting for bagel thins over the regular kind. Here, four healthy ways to order at the popular bagel chain that all clock in under 430 calories.
Why it made the cut: This breakfast provides a good balance of carbs, fat and protein. Choosing whole-wheat adds more nutrients compared to a plain white bagel, and the thin option satisfies the bagel craving with fewer calories. Plus, topping it with an egg adds protein and nutrients for just 80 calories.
RD tip: Order avocado instead of cream cheese for a dose of healthy unsaturated fat, fiber, vitamins and minerals.
Why it made the cut: This sandwich provides a whopping 22 grams of protein for just 300 calories. It’s also much more interesting than a plain egg sandwich thanks to the kick from the tomatillo salsa and pepper jack cheese.
RD tip: With so many other flavors happening on this sandwich (tomatillo salsa, pepper jack cheese and sausage) the cream cheese isn’t necessary. Skipping it saves 100 calories and 6 grams of saturated fat.
Why it made the cut: Along with protein-rich hummus and a whole-grain roll, you’ll get a healthy dose of vegetables — something you can’t always count on in a quick grab-and-go lunch.
RD tip: Choosing hummus instead of cream cheese shaves off unnecessary saturated fat and adds more protein. You can also order this sandwich on a bagel thin to lower the calorie and carb counts.
Why it made the cut: Most people think of chicken salad as a no-no because of all the mayo, but it can actually be one of the lighter options on a menu when lined up next to sandwiches loaded with cheese, cream cheese, bacon and other condiments. Plus, it’s high protein content helps you feel fuller longer.
RD tip: Ordering a chicken salad sandwich on a bagel thin instead of a roll or regular bagel saves about 100 calories, so you end up with a filling lunch for just over 400 calories.
Why it made the cut: This breakfast saves about 200 calories compared to a regular bagel and cream cheese, but still hits the spot with a bagel and coffee all for under 400 calories.
RD tip: Order an unsweetened coffee drink with milk for a protein boost without tacking on unnecessary sugar. Pairing that with a bagel thin, which saves more than 100 calories compared to an original bagel, makes for a balanced breakfast.