The first Sonic Drive-In was founded in 1953 and has become a fast-food staple across the country over the years. It’s best known for having servers bring you food on rollerskates. But, Sonic is far from a gimmick.
They’ve become widely known for their burgers, fries, and especially their delicious milkshakes.
Most people assume that the food served at Sonic is not healthy. The menu indeed has its fair share of caloric items. But, that doesn’t mean every dish is going to derail your health goals.
There are many ways to make any burger or sandwich on the menu healthier. From downsizing to choosing an alternative to french fries, you can find a meal that fits your healthy lifestyle at Sonic.
I know that I don’t want to give up fast food just because I’m trying to stay healthy, and at Sonic, I don’t have to.
Let’s take a look at some of the best healthy food at Sonic, so you can make the best choices for your dietary needs and goals without having to sacrifice going to your favorite fast-food joint.
Grilled Chicken Sandwich
The Classic Grilled Chicken Sandwich is one of the healthiest choices at Sonic because it’s made with 100 percent grilled chicken breast.
The sandwich has 490 calories and comes on a brioche bun. It features lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise. This is a healthier food choice at Sonic because it’s not fried and contains a serving of vegetables.
Swap the mayonnaise for mustard if you want to make it even healthier while giving it a tangier flavor. I usually add other vegetables to the entree, such as onions and pickles.
Since the sandwich has clean protein, it’s very filling and won’t leave you hungry for something else a few hours later.
The Jr. Burger at Sonic is a much better alternative to the classic hamburger.
It’s much smaller but tastes just as good, and is perfectly filling. The burger includes American cheese, mayonnaise, mustard, ketchup, pickles, and red onions.
It’s made with 100% beef and contains about 340 calories. It also has 15 grams of protein and 34 grams of carbohydrates.
The Jr. Burger has a lot of flavor and still fits into your healthy lifestyle because of the number of vegetables it contains. If you want to make the burger even more nourishing, ask for a whole wheat bun.
Removing the cheese is also an option to lower fat consumption. If you’re craving a burger but don’t want to load up on fat and calories, the Jr. Burger will scratch that itch!
Grilled Chicken Wrap
The Grilled Chicken Wrap comes with romaine, tomato, and shredded cheddar cheese.
It has 460 calories and features grilled chicken smothered in ranch dressing. The best part is that it has 31 grams of protein. The wrap will help you to feel full throughout your day.
Keep in mind that it is low in added sugar, which is often hard to find in fast-food dishes. It only contains one gram!
If you want to make the wrap even healthier, ask for light ranch dressing instead of regular, or forego ranch dressing altogether for mustard.
I’ve tried it with all three dressings and though I prefer the ranch, it’s still good with mustard.
While Crispy Chicken Tenders might not sound healthy at first, they’re better for you than you might think, and one of the best ways to enjoy a fast-food classic while maintaining your goals.
The tenders contain 35 grams of protein and offer 570 calories per order. They are fried to perfection.
The good thing is that if you have a hankering for chicken tenders and don’t want to overeat, you can opt to get their three-piece tenders instead.
This not only helps you cut a little over 200 calories, but it allows you to fulfill your cravings. Opt for mustard or honey mustard as a dipping sauce to lower the number of carbs you consume from added sugar.
Everyone looks at french fries as the enemy of a healthy diet.
But, some places offer more nutritious options when it comes to their fries. Sonic offers Small Fries, which contain about 290 calories.
Their fries are made from whole Russet Potatoes without any processed ingredients. You can taste the difference between their freshly-fried potatoes and fries with artificial additives.
The only ingredients in Sonic’s fries are potatoes, oil, and salt. If you’re looking to make your fries healthier and reduce sodium levels, ask for their unsalted option.
If french fries are one of your favorite foods, a small portion can fulfill your craving without causing you to overdo it. That way, you still get to enjoy your favorite food in moderation.
Mini Popcorn Chicken
The Mini Jumbo Popcorn Chicken at Sonic is an excellent option if you’re looking for a healthy and filling snack.
The 100% white meat chicken nuggets only have 245 calories. It’s a great option as an entree alone, a snack, or even a replacement for fries.
I order these as a side to the chicken wrap all the time when I need more protein.
When you order the popcorn chicken, make sure to ask for the sauce on the side. This way, you can either eat them plain or add spice and flavor as needed instead of consuming empty calories.
Opt for the mustard sauce instead of ranch, ketchup, or barbeque sauce if you’re looking to cut calories.
An order of Sonic’s Small Tots is just 250 calories.
One thing that makes the tots a healthier option is that they are made from whole Russet potatoes without any processed ingredients.
Sonic is one of the few places that offer real potato tots instead of frozen tater tots or out of a box. Their tots are delicious!
You’ll also get 2 grams of protein and 30 grams of carbohydrates. The seasoned tots are very filling and a fun alternative to traditional French fries. They are tasty with or without added sauces.
Add the grilled chicken sandwich or the mini jumbo popcorn chicken to your order for a complete meal with lean protein and a healthy amount of fats.
Chicken Strip Sandwich
The Chicken Strip Sandwich is on the snack menu at Sonic, but it’s very filling and will satisfy your craving for fried chicken without allowing you to overindulge.
It comes with two chicken strips, whole grain bread, lettuce, tomato, and low-fat mayo.
The Chicken Strip Sandwich, for me, was a simple but delicious entree that I could order again and again while trying to watch my caloric intake.
The whole grain bread helps make it healthier because it contains 6 grams of protein, making the entire sandwich only 440 calories. You’ll also get 12 grams of protein in the chicken strips alone for a total of 18 grams.
This is an excellent option if you’re looking for something to hold you over until dinner time.
Sonic is a fun place to experience when looking for a quick meal. They’re one of the most popular fast-food chains in America, and they have no shortage of healthy options.
Whether you choose a small fry to go with your meal, a grilled chicken sandwich for protein, or small tots for a more whimsical side, knowing what to order from Sonic will help you stay on track with your healthy lifestyle.
Some of Sonic’s breakfast menu is fairly healthy too – check it out to start your day off right!