Unhealthiest Thing You Can Order At Your Favorite Fast Food Chain

We all know that fast food isn't really healthy, right? Fast food doesn't exactly have a great reputation as being nutritious and some items have way more calories than you might expect. Beyond the general social knowledge that fast food, regardless of how fast and convenient it is, is not the wisest nutritional choice for our bodies, there are plenty of scholarly articles out there that say the same. Fast food comes with its fair share of danger.

But, take heart — some fast food is worse than others. That means the next time you go through the drive-thru at Burger King or McDonald's, you can rest easy knowing that your choice to go with the Big Mac or Whopper is actually much better than some of the alternatives. In fact, you might even say you're making a healthier choice.

Ready to discover the unhealthiest things you can order at your favorite fast-food chains, so you can avoid them (or maybe relish in them, if you're looking for a guilty pleasure) the next time you need a quick bite to eat? Here are the worst of the worst from some of the nation's most popular fast-food spots.

McDonald's starts your day out on an unhealthy note, with the Big Breakfast Platter

If you were going to pick the unhealthiest item off the McDonald's menu, what would you choose? Probably one of the chain's burgers, right? But, actually, for the unhealthiest McDonald's menu item, you'll want to look to the breakfast options, specifically the Big Breakfast Platter. Order this heaping plate of breakfast-y goodness and you get a warm biscuit, sausage patty, multiple hash browns, three pancakes with syrup and butter, and a mountain of scrambled eggs. It all adds up to 1,340 calories and 63 grams of fat — that's almost your entire allotment of fat per day, according to the FDA's recommended daily intake of less than 78 grams of fat per day, for the average adult on a 2,000-calorie diet. Not to mention, that's more than half of your caloric allotment for the day.

If you really want to stick to healthy options on the McDonald's breakfast menu, you'd be best going with the fruit and maple oatmeal, which clocks in at 320 calories, or the classic Egg McMuffin, which clocks in at 310.

Chipotle's burritos pack in enough calories, sodium, and fat to keep you covered for more than a day

When you think Chipotle, maybe you think the chain is a little on the healthier side when compared to burger-centric fast-food places like McDonald's and Wendy's. After all, you don't think of Chipotle as offering a lot of greasy, fried items. Everything seems a bit on the fresh side. But don't let that fool you, because if you order the right thing off the Chipotle menu, you could end up eating more calories, sodium, and fat than you need in an entire day, all in one meal.

The worst thing you can order? A carnitas burrito in a flour tortilla, with rice (either type), beans (either type), guac, cheese, queso, and sour cream, along with a side of tortilla chips and queso. This combination results in a total 2,220 calories; 117.5 grams of fat; and 3,330 mg of sodium. At least you get 75 grams of protein out of it? The totals are far above what any adult needs for their daily intake. The FDA recommends obviously the maximum of 2,000 calories per day, but also the maximum of 78 grams of fat per day and 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day.

KFC's Famous Bowl is a taste of home and unhealthy living

KFC is a restaurant that you probably expect to be relatively unhealthy. It's fried chicken, after all. But you might think your unhealthiest option on the menu would be a piece of that fried chicken ... right?

Wrong. The most calorie-laden item on the KFC menu isn't any of the brand's original fried chicken. Instead, it's the KFC Famous Bowl, which doesn't even really feature traditional fried chicken. Rather, it includes a kids-sized serving of popcorn chicken nuggets, alongside mashed potatoes, gravy, shredded cheese, and corn, all in one dish. If you don't like your food to touch, this is absolutely not the dish for you. This bowl comes with 740 calories, 35 grams of fat, 45 grams of cholesterol, and 2,530 milligrams of sodium.

A close contender is the KFC chicken pot pie, which is a bit of a sleeper item. Who would think something so wholesome would be so bad? But it is, with 720 calories, 41 grams of fat, and 1,750 grams of sodium. So, maybe the next time you're trying to eat healthier at KFC, just go with the fried chicken?

Burger King makes the Whopper even unhealthier, with its Texas Double Whopper

Oh, you think the Triple Whopper with cheese is the unhealthiest menu item on the Burger King menu? Think again. While that's an easy assumption to make, what with those three patties, per serving, the Triple Whopper with cheese isn't the unhealthiest item on the menu (though, if you customized it enough, upsized it, and added a few sides, you could probably make it thus). 

No, just looking at single menu items, the winner for unhealthiest item on the Burger King menu is the Texas Double Whopper, at 1,876 calories, 136 grams of fat, and 3,079 milligrams of sodium. Make it a large with a drink and a side, and you could potentially make your meal somewhere around 3,500 calories. There's even a warning for the burger on the Burger King online menu that states, the "sodium (salt) content of this item is higher than the total daily recommended limit (2,300mg). High sodium intake can increase blood pressure and risk of heart disease and stroke."

Taco Bell's Nachos Bell Grande takes top spot for unhealthiest fast-food side dish

First things first — no one's going to Taco Bell and only ordering one item or even one combo. You go to Taco Bell and you order something along the lines of two burritos, three tacos, one serving of nachos, and some mini churros. It's Taco Bell. But who knew that the unhealthiest item in your sagging bag of sloppy Mexican fast food was actually one of the sides? Taco Bell takes the top spot for unhealthiest fast food side dish with its Nachos Bell Grande, aka the larger tray of nachos covered in taco meat, cheese sauce, and sour cream that you probably order intending to share and then end up absolutely not sharing because it's just that good.

So, what can you expect from the Nachos Bell Grande? You'll get 740 calories, 38 grams of fat, and 1,050 milligrams of sodium. While that's not all bad compared to some of the other menu items on this list, it is still pretty high for a side dish, so unless you're planning on enjoying only your nachos from Taco Bell and nothing else, you might do best to go with another side/appetizer item to go alongside your quesadilla or tacos.

Wendy's really just crams all of the unhealthy onto its specialty Pretzel Bacon Pub Triple burger

All things considered, Wendy's specialty Pretzel Bacon Pub Triple burger looks pretty good. Nearly a pound of beef is fried up and topped with warm beer cheese, bacon, honey mustard, fried onions, three slices of muenster cheese, and pickles, and then tucked onto a pretzel bun. What's not to love? Unfortunately, when it comes to the nutritional info, there's actually quite a lot not to love. With 1,520 calories, 106 grams of fat, and 1,940 milligrams of sodium, this burger nearly accounts for all of your calories and sodium for the day and goes well above and beyond your recommended 78 grams of fat for a day. 

So if you want to experience the pub-inspired flavors of this specialty burger on Wendy's menu, maybe lose a few of the beef patties and go with a single burger and a single piece of muenster cheese, versus a triple. You'll lose out a little on the decadent meaty, cheesy goodness scale, but you'll possibly save your arteries some stress.

Yes, even Subway offers up some unhealthy options, with its turkey and bacon guac wrap

"Subway?!" you ask. "But Subway is supposed to be healthy! That Jared guy lost so much weight! I saw it on a commercial!" Yes, while Subway has done its part to form a reputation as one of the healthier fast-food options, that doesn't mean you can walk into your favorite sub shop and order anything off the menu, then expect it to be chockfull of health. In fact, you can find one item in particular on the menu that's going to leave you swimming in salt: the turkey and bacon guacamole wrap.

It's innocent-looking, sure. You have a tomato-basil wrap filled with a heaping serving of turkey, bacon, cheese, guacamole, some veggies, and then some ranch dressing. Maybe the ranch dressing and guacamole are a little fattening, but overall, this looks like a safe bet — until you see how much sodium it contains. Somehow, this deceiving wrap contains a whopping 2,570 milligrams of sodium, just over your daily recommended intake.

Chick-fil-A's favorited summertime treat, the peach milkshake, is loaded with sugar

The summer-only, much-awaited Chick-fil-A peach milkshake is a cult favorite, so it's probably good that you can only order it during certain months of the year. That's because this delightful summer treat at the wholesomely-branded Chick-fil-A is filled with sugar — but that's not all. It includes 630 calories and 21 grams of fat and that's on top of the 94 grams of sugar, which is equal to about 22 teaspoons of table sugar. Yummy, right? That's nearly double the FDA-recommended daily 50 grams of added sugar or less. According to Menu with Price, if you wanted to burn off all the calories and sugar from downing one of these milkshakes, you'd need to walk for 169 minutes, run for 59 minutes, or cycle for 108 minutes. So, before you order the peach milkshake this year, maybe consider how far you'd be willing to run for it?

Pizza Hut's worse offender is a personal pan pizza

If you grew up in the 1990s, chances are, you remember getting a personal pan pizza at Pizza Hut in exchange for reading a few books. Nothing tasted as good as that cheesy, pepperoni-topped, cute lil' personal pan pizza earned via your own hard work. But did you know that Pizza Hut makes personal pan pizzas for adults, too? You can relive the nostalgia of your childhood by ordering your favorite pie in a personal pizza pan size, so long as you don't mind the calories. Just because a personal pizza is smaller, that doesn't make it healthier than a serving of Pizza Hut's normal-sized pies. If you go with a Meat Lover's personal pan pizza, you'll be treated to 830 calories, a surprising number for something so small, especially when you consider that, if you purchased a Meat Lover's medium pizza, you could eat nearly eight pieces all on your own before you reached 830 calories.

Dairy Queen's unhealthiest blizzard is a storm of calories and sugar

No one goes out for ice cream thinking they'll be having a healthful dessert to end their day. However, in most cases, you could do worse — you could order the unhealthiest Blizzard at Dairy Queen. The fast-food restaurant's unhealthiest item is a decadent disaster of calories and sugar. The Royal Rocky Road Trip Blizzard is vanilla ice cream mixed with brownie pieces, peanuts, and chocolate fudge, and then it features a marshmallow core on the inside. A large comes with 1,510 calories, 70 grams of fat, and a wild 151 grams of sugar. That, folks, is the equivalent of just under 36 teaspoons of sugar, or, to paint a better picture, about three-fourths of a cup of sugar. It's a pretty sobering thought, especially when you consider that Dairy Queen's even taken the effort to use reduced-fat ice cream in the Blizzard; at that point, why even bother?

Arby's has the meat — and the calories

Whether you love or hate Arby's, if you find yourself dining at this fast-food chain sometime soon, go ahead and skip over the spicy Greek gyro meal. You might not normally think of gyros as particularly unhealthy, but when it comes to Arby's, the gyro meal is the most unhealthy option on the menu. A pita is stuffed with gyro meat (piled high, Arby's-style), tomatoes, lettuce, onion, tzatziki sauce, some spices, and a spicy chili sauce — which all sounds pretty tame at first glance. 

However, this meal, if you include a small drink and small serving of fries, comes out to 1,640 calories and more than 75 grams of fat. That puts you nearly at your daily fat threshold for the day, according to the FDA. If you're wanting to save on the calories the next time you go to Arby's, you'd do well to stick with a classic roast beef meal, chicken tenders meal, or select chicken sandwich meal, all of which are under 1,000 calories.

Hardee's pulls out all the stops with The Really Big Hardee

Whereas fast-food restaurants like Subway have attempted to create a reputation of healthfulness, other restaurants like Hardee's have fully leaned into the unhealthy lifestyle. If you've seen any advertisement or marketing from Hardee's, it's pretty easy to see that the brand is all about the big, the messy, and the unhealthy. And the unhealthiest of all the brand's menu items? The Really Big Hardee. An offering that the menu calls an "all new bigger, bolder option," it includes three patties, three slices of American cheese, lettuce, and sauce on a bun. It all amounts to 1,170 calories for the burger only. Add on onion rings at 670 calories and one of those tasty Hardee's, hand-scooped milkshakes at 700 calories, and you can see how quickly things add up for one meal.

Healthy options at Hardee's are slim pickings, though, so if you do want to watch your caloric intake during a visit to your nearest location, opt for the hand-breaded chicken tenders, which are only 260 calories for a three-piece serving.

Sonic bests Dairy Queen for unhealthiest dessert item, with its Oreo Peanut Butter Shake

If you thought Dairy Queen's unhealthiest dessert was bad, just wait until you see what's at Sonic. Sonic's shakes come in some truly tasty flavors, but there's one item in particular that you may want to avoid — if you value not ending up with a mouthful of cavities, that is. The Oreo Peanut Butter Shake doesn't necessarily sound lavishly sweet and sugary (and the ingredients list is pretty tame, too, only including vanilla ice cream, peanut butter, Oreos, whipped topping, and a cherry), but it is. At 1,720 calories for a large, it outranks the Dairy Queen large Royal Rocky Road Trip Blizzard by a few hundred calories. In terms of sugar, it comes with 107 grams of the good stuff, alongside 106 grams of fat and 1,130 milligrams of sodium. So, while the Blizzard still reigns supreme for overall sugar content, it just can't stand up to Sonic in terms of overall calories and certainly not fat content.

Dunkin Donuts proves that even your coffee can be the unhealthiest thing you eat all day

If you thought you were safe from the unhealthy evils of fast food because you mostly only get coffee in the drive-thru, think again. Dunkin Donuts will absolutely make your coffee the unhealthiest thing you have all day, especially if you order the chain's butter pecan swirl frozen coffee with cream. At 1,160 calories, it's the unhealthiest item on the Dunkin menu. You could eat multiple donuts for that same amount of calories. It makes sense, though. This is one coffee drink that tastes far more like a dessert item than actual coffee. In addition to the calories, you also get 22 grams of saturated fat (10% over the daily value) and 168 grams of added sugar, or 236% over the daily value. On top of all this, the drink also contains 393 milligrams of caffeine and, according to the Mayo Clinic, it's recommended most adults not exceed 400 milligrams of caffeine per day. In other words, don't think you can have a second cup of coffee after downing this drink.

Checkers rounds out our list with the unhealthiest serving of fast-food chicken wings

Like Hardee's, Checkers isn't really known for its healthy options. It specializes in big, messy burgers dripping with cheese and bacon — which is perfectly fine according to its fanbase. But if you want to eat the unhealthiest item on the Checkers menu, you'll want to look past the burgers, to the boneless wings. According to the Checkers menu, the chain's 20-piece boneless garlic parmesan wings are just about as unhealthy as it gets, at 1,870 calories for the lot. The sodium, at 3,100 milligrams, is pretty impressive, too, though there are other items on the Checkers menu with a higher salt content overall.

Just looking at Checkers' nutrition content makes one wonder if it's even possible at all to order something slightly healthy on the menu. Your best bet? Go as plain as possible, with either a grilled hot dog or All American Cheeseburger, two options that are below 400 calories.