So.. I love me some Olive Garden. And its safe to say that its one of my fav’s and I almost ALWAYS get a gift card to that place from a family member for Christmas or my birthday. So needless to say its a known fact that I LOVE OLIVE GARDEN! haha
But not everything there is healthy either. Just like other restaurants, they have good healthy options, and … eh, lets just go with the fact that they have poor decisions as well…So.. which do you choose? How do you know what’s a “healthy” option without bombarding the waitress about all the nutritional information and looking like a crazed, obsessed dieter.
And that my dear friends, is why I’m here!
AMANDA to the RESCUE!!!
So being the salad and breadstick lover I am, I’m sad to say that one serving of their delicious salad (that’s drenched in awesome dressing I might add) and one breadstick is a whopping 500 calories alone. Sad, but true. And don’t go and try to blame the breadstick either! ok. One breadstick is around 150 calories, so most of the issue is actually coming from the drenched salad… ironically. So, quick fix, as for the dressing on the side! YAY! (don’t drench it when you get it on the side either- that’s defeating the purpose) Instead, dip the prongs of your fork into the dressing and, then, get a fork full of salad. Tastes the same, saves some un-needed calories.
Next .. say you want an Appetizer.
Stuffed mushrooms is probably your best option – 280 cal.
Mussels de Napoli which is 180 calories but extremely high in sodium so … only have a few.
Unlike the Lasagna Fritta that’s around 1,030…HOLY SMOKES!
Next, the main meal!
Soups and salads are always a better choice (usually) depending on where you go….
Now I know I just bashed the famous Olive Garden salad, bit its not that bad, if its your main course, just go light on the dressing.
Best Soup option – Pasta e fagioli (it has the lowest amount of sodium)
Other options include
- Cheese ravioli with marinara sause
- Linguine alla Marinara
- Parmesan Crusted tilapia
- Plain ol’ Spaghetti and Meatballs
- Herbed Grilled Salmon
- Apricot Chicken
- Ravioli Portobello
- Chicken marsalla (kind of high in sodium , so if you cut in half, that would be ideal)
And as good as that Tour of Italy dish looks , its almost your entire days worth of calories along in that one dish! oh my.. – 1.450 calories and 3,800mg of sodium. WOW
To make your dish even healthier .. you can always ask for Whole grain or Gluten free noodles. Regular linguini and penne are the other two better options.
And choose marinara over any white cream sauce.
Also – here is the link to Olive Gardens Menu and Nutritional Information if you want to look for yourself. https://www.olivegarden.com/Menu/Nutrition/