My family loves Chick-fil-A. There’s really something on the menu for everyone. Even when I first started my weight loss journey last summer I was able to enjoy eating there guilt-free (I loved getting the grilled nuggets with a fruit cup and diet lemonade!)
Now I’m a lifetime Weight Watchers member, but I still pay close attention to the choices I make when I go out to eat. I was very excited to hear that last month, Chick-fil-A came out with three new salads and a wrap. I’ve learned through my journey that sometimes restaurants offer salads that aren’t really healthy (at some places, you’re almost better off choosing something fried from the menu!) or if they are low in calories and fat, they don’t taste good. So I was really happy when Chick-fil-A invited me and my friends to come to the restaurant to learn more about the new items and their restaurant so we could see how they measured up.
The three new Chick-Fil-A salads include the Cobb Salad, Asian Salad and Grilled Market Salad. We learned that produce is delivered each morning to Chick-fil-A and that they make their salads several times a day from scratch in their kitchen. Chick-fil-A did away with the iceberg lettuce bed they once used to build their salads and now use an organic romaine sweet mix lettuce for all the salads. (YUM!)
Since they were introduced, the Cobb Salad has been the leader in sales so far with the Market Salad closely following in second place. Here is the break down of what is in each salad, nutritional information and what we thought!
1. Cobb Salad: 430 calories, 22 grams fat, 21 grams carbs, 5 grams fiber, 39 grams protein (Weight Watchers 11 PP)
Contains fried chicken nuggets, romaine lettuce mix, shredded red cabbage and carrots, roasted corn kernels, shredded blend of Monterrey jack and cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon, diced egg and grape tomatoes.
You can top the salad with a packet of charred tomato crispy red bell peppers (add 80 calories, 6 grams of fat, 6 grams carbs, 1 gram fiber and 1 gram protein which is 2 Weight Watcher PP).
They suggest using the Avocado Lime Ranch dressing which packs on a whopping 310 calories, 32 grams of fat, 3 grams of carbs, 0 grams fiber and 1 gram of protein for just a 2 ounce packet (9 Weight Watcher PP)! The Buttermilk Ranch dressing (another popular Cobb salad dressing) isn’t much better with 280 calories, 30 grams fat, 2 grams carb, 0 gram fiber, 1 gram protein (8 Weight Watcher PP). Neither is the Spicy Dressing containing 270 calories, 27 grams fat, 4 grams carb, 0 gram fiber and 1 gram protein (7 Weight Watcher PP).
The verdict: Moms who selected this salad loved the taste. We suggest using the Fat Free Honey Mustard dressing which is a better option with only 100 calories, 0 grams fat, 23 grams carb, 1 gram fiber and 0 gram protein (2 Weight Watcher PP). Karen did this and said it was delicious!
Note: We really like that Chick-Fil-A uses 100 percent refined peanut oil and a pressure cooker instead of an open fryer for their fried food. They also clean out the oil after every three batches and hand bread each nugget.
2. Asian Salad: 330 calories, 13 grams fat, 24 gram carb, 5 grams fiber, 29 gram protein (8 Weight Watcher PP)
Contains fried chicken nuggets, shredded red and green cabbage, carrots and mandarin orange segments.
You can top the salad with Chinese garlic and ginger wontons (70 calories, 4 grams fat, 8 grams carb, 0 grams fiber, 2 grams protein which is 2 Weight Watchers PP) and honey Thai almonds (40 calories, 3 grams fat, 3 grams carb, 1 gram fiber and 1 gram protein (1 Weight Watchers PP). They also suggest the Honey Sesame dressing 170 calories, 12 grams fat, 16 grams carb, 0 gram fiber, 1 gram protein (5 Weight Watcher PP).
The verdict: This salad is delicious! The dressing really makes the salad great so we don’t recommend using an alternative…if you want to cut down calories/fat try using only half the Sesame dressing packet…a little goes a long way! The wontons and almonds are great, too (Patti said she loved eating the almonds right out of the bag…they have a great little kick to them!)
3. Market Salad: 180 calories, 4 grams fat, 24 grams carbs, 5 grams fiber, 29 grams protein (6 Weight Watchers PP)
Contains grilled chicken strips, shredded red cabbage and carrots, crumbled blue cheese, red and green apple bits, strawberries and blueberries.
You can add harvest nut granola (60 calories, 3 grams fat, 8 grams carbs, 1 gram fiber and 1 gram protein which is 2 Weight Watchers PP) and roasted nut blend (80 calories, 8 grams fat, 3 grams carbs, 1 gram fiber, 2 grams protein which is 2 Weight Watcher PP). They suggest the Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette dressing (230 calories, 19 fat grams, 16 grams carbs, 0 grams fiber and 0 grams protein which is 7 Weight Watchers PP).
The verdict: This is the healthiest option of the three and also very delicious. They use the normal chicken filets (not the chargrilled chicken) without breading. We especially loved the organic blueberries and strawberries. Angie liked the salad without the toppings. I wanted a little more flavor and crunch but not as much calories/fat, so I added half a packet of the nut blend and granola. You could also just pick one of the two and add the whole packet.
The Zesty Apple Cider Vinaigrette was a little high in fat and calories/carbs so I used the Reduced Fat Berry Balsamic Vinaigrette instead (110 calories, 3.5 grams fat, 20 grams carbs, o grams fiber and o grams fiber which – only 3 Weight Watchers points) and it complimented the fruity taste of the salad perfectly. In fact, I only used half the packet of dressing!
Susan loved it with the Fat Free Honey Mustard dressing but said she was excited to try it again with one of their lower fat dipping sauces.
Another dressing option for any of the salads is the light Italian dressing with only 25 calories, 1.5 fat grams, 3 grams carbs, 0 gram fiber and 0 gram protein, only 1 Weight Watchers PP….BUT – in our opinion, what it lacks in fat/calories it also lacks in taste!
Wrap It Up….
We were impressed with the new line-up and love all the choices we can make to tailor it to our own taste and nutritional needs. Chick-fil-A is very accommodating and often make changes to menu items at their customers request. Angie said she would love the market salad chicken served hot instead of cold…which they said they would absolutely do. Love this about Chick-fil-A!
While we didn’t get to sample the new wrap…we did learn some interesting information. They once had three wraps but now just offer one. They use flaxseed oil in their tortillas instead of seeds offering health benefits but also giving the wrap more flexibility so it will roll without breaking. Nice touch! They also got rid of the tomatoes which made the wrap soggy (but I bet if you wanted them added, they would!)
What do you think about the new salads at Chick-fil-A? Have you tried the new wrap? Are you happy about the changes they are making? Let me know!
I was invited to attend a lunch to try out the new salads at Chick-fil-A. I did not receive any compensation and all thoughts and opinions are my own.