Eatin' goood in the neighborhood doesn't have to put your diet in danger. We're happy to be your guilt-free GPS, steering you away from calorie catastrophes and in the direction of HG-friendly finds at Applebee's!
Starters and Soups
Fight It! We rounded up the 12 most fattening appetizers, a.k.a. The Dirty Dozen, ranging from 1,290 - 2,590 calories and 56 - 173g fat per order (PointsPlus® value 35 - 72*)! Here they are, from worst to... less worse:
Appetizer Sampler * Chili Cheese Nachos * Spinach & Artichoke Dip * Queso Blanco with Chili * Chicken Quesadilla Grande * Potato Skins * Queso Blanco * Cheeseburger Sliders with Applewood Smoked Bacon * Cheese Quesadilla Grande * Cheeseburger Sliders * Honey BBQ Boneless Buffalo Wings * Crunchy Onion Rings
PHEW! Or should we say EWWW!
Slurp It! Skip the appetizer menu altogether and opt for soup! Starting a meal with broth-based soup helps you fill up quicker, so you'll likely eat less once the entrée arrives. A bowl of the Chicken Tortilla Soup has only 180 calories and 8g fat (PointsPlus® value 5*), and the Chicken Noodle has a mere 160 calories and 4g fat per bowl (PointsPlus® value 4*). But with 250 - 540 calories and 14 - 32g fat per bowl, the other soups on the menu aren't really worth it.
Fight It! Grilled Shrimp 'N Spinach Salad PER SERVING (1 order): 1,050 calories, 72g fat, 2,530mg sodium, 68g carbs, 13g fiber, 50g protein -- PointsPlus® value 29*
This is one of those sneaky salads that sounds relatively healthy but has super-scary stats. Be VERY afraid.
Bite It! Paradise Chicken Salad PER SERVING (1 order): 340 calories, 4.5g fat, 2,060mg sodium, 35g carbs, 6g fiber, 45g protein -- PointsPlus® value 9*
Wowowow. This is no ordinary chicken salad. It has blackened grilled chicken, pineapple, mandarin oranges, apple chunks, pico de gallo, and balsamic vinaigrette! And lettuce. Yay!
Honorable Mention! The Asian Crunch Salad is also a great salad selection, with 490 calories and 9g fat. Just don't mistake it for the 1,310-calorie Oriental Chicken Salad -- eeeks!
"Riblets" sounds so cute and innocent... like a mini version of ribs, right? But compared with the regular ribs, this entrée actually has about 300 more calories and at least 12 extra grams of fat. Obviously, neither is a good option!
Bite It! Steak & Portobellos PER SERVING (1 order): 330 calories, 10g fat, 1,610mg sodium, 38g carbs, 8g fiber, 31g protein -- PointsPlus® value 9*
There's really no excuse to order Riblets when you can chow down on a meal of steak, portobellos, potatoes, and veggies for about a FIFTH of the calories. Get your Riblet fix at home with the Morningstar Farms version.
Honorable Mentions! The Asiago Peppercorn Steak with sides has 390 calories and 14g fat (PointsPlus® value 10*). The 7-oz. House Sirloin without sides has only 250 calories and 12g fat (PointsPlus® value 6*). Pssst... For sides, we suggest the Fresh Fruit and Seasonal Veggies.
Pop-Up Topper Tip! Before you order your steak topped off with simple Sautéed Garlic Mushrooms, consider this: That topper has more fat than the 9-oz. steak... 14 grams! Stick with the Grilled Onions topper, which has a completely reasonable 45 calories and 2.5g fat (PointsPlus® value 1*).
Fight It! Fiesta Lime Chicken PER SERVING (1 order): 1,230 calories, 67g fat, 4,390mg sodium, 97g carbs, 9g fiber, 60g protein -- PointsPlus® value 33*
This sounds simple enough -- grilled chicken with citrus sauce -- but it's a doozy. Avoid!!!
Bite It! Italian Chicken & Portobello Sandwich PER SERVING (1 order): 320 calories, 4.5g fat, 730mg sodium, 47g carbs, 8g fiber, 29g protein -- PointsPlus® value 8*
Oooh... a fancy sandwich find? Yup! Featuring a wheat bun and a side of fresh fruit.
Honorable Mentions! Kudos go out to the Grilled Dijon Chicken & Portobellos, with 450 calories and 16g fat (PointsPlus® value 12*).
Fight It! Sizzling Skillet Shrimp Fajitas PER SERVING (1 order): 1,340 calories, 65g fat, 6,060mg sodium, 138g carbs, 12g fiber, 51g protein -- PointsPlus® value 35*
Ummm... It would appear that this is merely shrimp on a hot plate, accompanied by lettuce, sour cream, pico de gallo, veggies, and cheese. What do they DO to those poor shrimp and vegetables?
Bite It!Cajun Lime Tilapia PER SERVING (1 order): 310 calories, 6g fat, 2,160mg sodium, 39g carbs, 9g fiber, 36g protein -- PointsPlus® value 8*
We love tilapia. It's mild and awesome. This one's nicely seasoned, topped with black bean & corn salsa, and served with rice pilaf and veggies. Score!
Honorable Mention! Dig shrimp? The Grilled Shrimp & Island Rice has just 380 calories and 4.5g fat (PointsPlus® value 9*). Waaaay better than the fajitas!
Fight It! We'll make this easy for you: With the exception of the Dessert Shooters and the elusive Blue Ribbon Brownie Bite, each of Applebee's desserts has 810 - 1,660 calories and 34 - 82g fat. Calorically speaking, the least awful is the Triple Chocolate Meltdown, and the most horrific is the Chocolate Chip Cookie Sundae. Moving on...
Bite It?Hot Fudge Sundae Shooter PER SERVING (1 shooter): 340 calories, 18g fat, 150mg sodium, 45g carbs, 0g fiber, 3g protein -- PointsPlus® value 10*
This is the safest Shooter on the dessert menu. It's not super low in stats, but it's definitely A LOT better than the average restaurant dessert. Still, think twice before you order it...
HG Heads-Up! We didn't include sugar stats because Applebee's doesn't provide them. And yes, we know the sodium counts are pretty high across the board here. If avoiding excess sodium is important to you, you may want to avoid dining out at chain restaurants as much as possible.
CHEW ON THIS: Did you know that August is Brownies at Brunch Month? Weird. But if you must celebrate this one, do so with a batch of Yum Yum Brownie Muffins!
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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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