Alright, the chain has “Donuts” in the name — is it possible to eat healthy there? Absolutely. While the fast-food joint does have a wall of sprinkled and stuffed doughnuts behind the cash register and offers greasy breakfast sandwiches galore, there are more nutritious options if you know where to look.
Dunkin’ Donuts puts forward the menu items they deem the healthiest on their DDSmart menu, which was curated alongside nutritionists and other experts. Many of these items also made it onto our list.
To decide what’s healthy and what’s not, we looked to more than just calories. This list takes other factors into account, as well, including sodium levels, nutrients like fat and protein, and the level of processing used in certain foods.
That being said, it’s important to read this information with a grain of salt. What’s healthiest for one person may not be what’s healthiest for another. What’s healthiest to choose for breakfast probably won’t be the same as what’s healthiest to choose for a small snack to order with your drink. You can find all of Dunkin’ Donuts’ nutrition information on their website; but here are our top 10 picks for the healthiest items and the 10 unhealthiest items on their menu.
If you want to splurge for a doughnut but don’t want to overdo it on the sugar and fat, this one’s for you. The French Cruller is Dunkin’ Donuts’ lowest-calorie doughnut on the menu, with just 220 calories for the whole thing. It has 10 grams of sugar and 13 grams of fat, which is less than some snack bars. Of course, that’s not to say this doughnut is a more nutritious choice — though, if you’re craving a doughnut, ordering one might be the healthiest option!
If you’re opting for a bagel, your healthiest bet is to choose the Multigrain Bagel at Dunkin’ Donuts. While it has 350 calories and definitely contains some carbs, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Plus, it has 8 grams of fiber from whole grains — over 30 percent of your daily recommended amount! Spreading your bagel with cream cheese will add approximately 100 more calories and some dietary fat to keep you satisfied for longer.
Whole grain oats can be a healthy, satisfying way to start the morning. Oats provide fiber, folate, and other nutrients. Of course, it’s healthier to sweeten your oatmeal at home with fruit and other natural ingredients, so Dunkin’s version isn’t quite perfect. A cup of oatmeal from Dunkin’ contains 310 calories and 35 grams of sugar, so be aware of that when you start dumping sugar into your coffee, as well. Eating too much sugar early in the morning can give you a nasty sugar crash.
Yelp / Chris G.
There are healthier things to put on a breakfast sandwich than processed meat — deli meats, like these other salty foods, tend to be heavy in sodium. This sandwich has 900 milligrams of sodium total, which is a lot to get from breakfast. However, the sandwich has just 360 calories and 15 grams of fat.
While the yolk of the egg is perfectly healthy — it’s the most nutritious part of the egg! — Dunkin’ Donuts does offer the option for a breakfast sandwich on an English muffin with just the egg white and cheese. This plain sandwich won’t feel anywhere near as decadent as a breakfast sandwich stuffed with other good things, but it’ll be low-calorie if that’s what you’re looking for! This menu option contains 270 calories and 6 grams of fat.
This option is similar to the Egg White and Cheese on an English Muffin, except it sneaks in some extra vegetables by using an egg white omelette instead of just the egg. The sandwich is 310 calories and 10 grams of fat. Its only drawback is the sodium, probably from the processed slice of American cheese. There are 730 milligrams of sodium in this breakfast.
Ordering a Wake-Up Wrap is a good idea for when you want a light bite instead of a massive breakfast. However, since this wrap is just 210 calories, it likely won’t keep you full for long. Some Wake-Up Wraps are even skimpier than this one and can’t even pretend to pass for a meal. But this one has bacon, egg, and cheese, so if you paired it with some fruit or a smoothie, it could do the trick for breakfast. This option also contains 9 grams of protein and 13 grams of fat.
Since it’s made with sausage as well as egg and cheese, this Wake-Up Wrap provides more in terms of nutrition than some others on the menu. The Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Wake-Up Wrap has 290 calories, 11 grams of protein, and 20 grams of dietary fat. But eating fat isn’t always a bad thing — here are some reasons you should actually be adding more fat to your diet.
Turkey sausage is a leaner source of protein than regular pork sausage since it has less saturated fat. This Wake-Up Wrap contains 240 calories, 14 grams of fat, and 13 grams of protein. Pair it with some fruit or yogurt for a breakfast that will keep you satisfied.
Yelp / Meriam T.
Rather than ordering a breakfast sandwich on a croissant or a bagel, you can opt for an English muffin to keep your calorie count down while still indulging your craving. This simple and classic breakfast sandwich contains 340 calories and 15 grams of fat. You also get to eat the egg yolk, which is where most of the nutritional benefit of eggs actually comes from!
A Kolache from Dunkin’ Donuts is pretty much an oversized pig in the blanket. They take a cheesy sausage and wrap it in flaky, white dough. However, these sausages are super processed, molded together from a blend of beef, pork, mechanically separated turkey, mechanically separated chicken, and a laundry list of other chemicals and ingredients. Though it has only 370 calories — far less than some other restaurant hot dogs — it also has 500 milligrams of sodium and 12 grams of sugar. That’s more sugar than some doughnuts on the menu!
It shouldn’t come as a shock that a doughnut isn’t the healthiest thing on the menu — you’re probably not looking for something healthy if you’re ordering one. But some doughnuts are more decadent than others. The Chocolate Crème Stick is one of the sweetest, densest ones, with 480 calories and 33 grams of sugar.
Even more sugary than the Chocolate Crème Stick is the Maple Crème Stick — with the same number of calories, 480, this doughnut has 35 grams of sugar. But again, a doughnut is a doughnut. There’s no denying that the best doughnuts were made to be sweet.
Yelp / Emmalouise B.
Next up on the list is the Glazed Jelly Stick. The jelly this doughnut is stuffed with more corn syrup and sugar than actual fruit. The entire pastry is 490 calories and 39 grams of sugar. If you’re a diabetic, be wary of this dessert; if you aren’t, don’t freak out if you eat too much sugar. The worst that could happen is that you experience one of these symptoms that you’ve overdone it and take some time away from sweets for a while.
A muffin — especially a muffin from a fast-food chain — is far from a healthy breakfast. Instead of getting the protein, healthy fat, and carbs that you need, you’re only fueling yourself with a large load of sugar. The Chocolate Chip Muffin has 550 calories and 50 grams of sugar. If you want to eat a pastry for breakfast but avoid the sugar crash, try prepping your own whole-grain breakfast muffins at home.
Even more caloric than the Chocolate Chip Muffin is the Coffee Cake Muffin. One of these has 590 calories and 51 grams of sugar. If you’re pairing that with a sugary Dunkin’ Donuts coffee drink as well, you’re in dangerous territory for your blood sugar.
This item is regional, so you won’t find it at every Dunkin’. But at some, you can order chicken salad in a croissant — a combination that could be tasty from a proper bakery or deli, but might not be the most satisfying from a fast-food chain. It’s also pretty fatty (thanks to what’s probably too much mayonnaise) and has 690 calories.
A breakfast sandwich is usually a pretty balanced meal. You get protein from eggs, carbs from the bread, and more nutritional value from whatever else you choose to add. However, the Sausage, Egg & Cheese on a Croissant is a little much. It has nearly half your recommended limit of sodium for the day — 1,120 milligrams. Additionally, you’ll be eating 710 calories and 51 grams of fat. Order this sandwich on an English muffin or bagel to cut back on the grease from the buttery, flaky croissant.
Twice the sausage gets you nearly twice the sodium and fat. This hefty breakfast sandwich contains 890 calories and 53 grams of fat. But that’s not even the most shocking consequence of opting for the extra processed patty of meat — this sandwich has 1,970 milligrams of sodium. Too many of these could send your blood pressure even higher than these other sodium-packed foods.
There are some super-sweet items on Dunkin’ Donuts’ menu, but this is by far the sweetest. The Chocolate flavor of the Extra Thick Shake, when ordered with M&M’s mixed in, has 1,280 calories and 167 grams of sugar. If you want to treat yourself, go ahead. Just know that if you finish the whole thing, you might feel pretty nauseous — or experience these other unexpected side effects of eating too many sweets.
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