With its crazy appetizers and skillet-slingin' servers, Chili's Bar & Grill can be a pretty tempting place. But before you get sucked in by the glitz, the glamour, the grease, and the grill, READ UP!
All-Star Starters & App Mishaps
Some appetizers are impressive, but the stats on others are less than appetizing...
Chicken & Green Chile Soup PER SERVING (1 cup, without crackers): 100 calories, 3g fat, 530mg sodium, 11g carbs, 1g fiber, 7g protein -- PointsPlus® value 3*
YAY! This new soup is a great option if you're super hungry and need something to hold you over until your entrée arrives. It's full of chiles, chicken, rice, and tomatoes, plus it's served with cilantro, avocado, and a wedge o' lime. PERFECT.
More Stellar Soups! A cup of the Black Bean or Southwestern Vegetable will only set you back 110 - 150 calories and 4 - 5g fat. Slightly higher in fat (but still reasonable) are the Loaded Baked Potato and Broccoli Cheese soups, with 120 - 140 calories and 7 - 8g fat per cup. BTW, the bowls are about twice the size, so adjust stats accordingly.
Loaded Nachos, Chicken (Small Order) PER SERVING (1 order, 8 loaded chips): 1,060 calories, 66g fat, 2,680mg sodium, 44g carbs, 5g fiber, 82g protein -- PointsPlus® value 29*
BOO! At first glance, this may seem like appetizer economy. You're not getting a bazillion chips; you're just getting eight protein-topped chips. Hold that thought. Each of those cheesy chicken crunchers has more than 130 calories and 8 fat grams. For ONE NACHO! That's crazy. PASS! (Although "Cheesy Chicken Crunchers" is a pretty cool name for a snack food... We'll get right on it.)
More Starter Mistakes! The following apps each contain over 1,000 calories an order (including their fatty dipping sauces): Boneless Buffalo Wings, Crispy Onion String & Jalapeno Stack, Fried Cheese, Hot Spinach & Artichoke Dip w/ Chips, all Loaded Nachos varieties, all Triple Dipper combos, Texas Cheese Fries, and Wings Over Buffalo. Eeeks!
Guiltless Grill House Salad PER SERVING (1 order): 140 calories, 6g fat, 570mg sodium, 22g carbs, 3g fiber, 5g protein -- PointsPlus® value 4*
YAY! True, this is just the regular house salad with low-fat ranch dressing. But it's got fire-roasted corn, red onions, tomatoes, and cucumbers on it. COOL!
Appetizer Advisory! That ubiquitous basket of chips and salsa can get you in trouble! (Okay, the CHIPS can.) One round has 480 calories and 39g fat, and they'll keep refilling it as long as you keep eating from it. ACK!
The To-Eat List
Entrées that won't give you the chills...
Margarita Grilled Chicken PER SERVING (1 entrée): 530 calories, 8g fat, 1,640mg sodium, 67g carbs, 11g fiber, 48g protein -- PointsPlus® value 13*
We love chicken and margaritas, so we were very excited to see the numbers on this item. Your citrusy grilled chicken comes with black beans, rice, pico de gallo, and tortilla strips. To slash the sodium content (and the calories), request veggies (sans butter) in place of those black beans and that rice.
Guiltless Grill Asian Salad PER SERVING (1 salad): 360 calories, 22g fat, 930mg sodium, 22g carbs, 7g fiber, 26g protein -- PointsPlus® value 10*
The GG-ification of this dish means that you get the small salad (still a nice size) topped with grilled chicken (not salmon or steak) and minus the crispy wontons and creamy peanut drizzle that usually come with it. But you still get cabbage, edamame, cilantro, green onions, sesame seeds, and an Asian vinaigrette dressing. Totally respectable. Save calories and fat by ordering the low-fat ranch dressing instead of that vinaigrette.
Guiltless Grill Grilled Chicken Sandwich PER SERVING (1 entrée): 610 calories, 12g fat, 1,310mg sodium, 78g carbs, 8g fiber, 44g protein -- PointsPlus® value 15*
Your fat-'n-calorie-slashed sandwich will consist of grilled chicken, the standard lettuce and tomato, and the GG honey-mustard dressing on a wheat bun. AND it comes with steamed veggies instead of fries. Not bad, since this version has less than half the calories of the regular one and 50 fewer fat grams. (Skip the honey mustard to slash the sodium count.) WOW. Way to go!
Honorable Mentions! The Guiltless Grill Classic Sirloin has a supposed 240 calories and 8g fat, which is GREAT. Except we can't figure out how an 8-oz. steak has just 240 calories. (Hmmmm.) All of the other Guiltless Grill meals and salads (those not mentioned in this email) have 520 - 610 calories and 19 - 24g fat.
The Dirty Dozen! Here are the 12 highest-calorie choices on the Chili's list of entrées, ranging from 1,470 - 2,160 calories and 81 - 138g fat (PointsPlus® value 39 - 58*)! Starting with the worst: Jalapeno Smokehouse Burger, Southern Smokehouse Burger, Big Mouth Bites, Chicken Crispers, Crispy Honey-Chipotle Chicken Crispers, Buffalo Chicken Ranch Sandwich, Bacon Ranch Chicken Quesadilla, Jalapeno Steak Quesadilla, Ground Peppercorn Burger, Classic Bacon Burger, Shiner Bock BBQ Burger, and Mushroom-Swiss Burger. Ouch.
To Top It All Off
The dish on desserts...
Brownie Sundae PER SERVING (1 dessert): 1,340 calories, 68g fat, 320mg sodium, 188g carbs, 7g fiber, 16g protein -- PointsPlus® value 39*
Guys, this doesn't even sound all that interesting, yet it's the highest-calorie dessert on the menu. Worse than the crazy-sounding Chocolate Chip Paradise Pie and those wacky "molten" cakes. AVOID.
Key Lime Pie, Red Velvet Cake, and Warm Cinnamon Roll Sweet Shots PER SERVING (1 "shot"): 240 - 280 calories, 9 - 13g fat, 75 - 200mg sodium, 30 - 39g carbs, 0 - 1g fiber, 3 - 4g protein -- PointsPlus® value 6 - 8*
These mini desserts are pretty great if you need a little something sweet. WARNING! We excluded one variety -- the Warm Double Chocolate Fudge Brownie -- for a reason. We think 420 calories and 24g fat is too much for a shot-glass portion of dessert. Just saying...
HG Heads Up! Searching for sugars? So were we; Chili's doesn't provide 'em.
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*The PointsPlus® values for these products and/or recipes were calculated by Hungry Girl and are not an endorsement or approval of the product, recipe or its manufacturer or developer by Weight Watchers International, Inc., the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark.
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