Nutritionist reveals healthiest KFC menu items in Australia

If your fast-food preference is for some special herbs and spices, it’s safe to say KFC has you covered.

With a huge number of menu items, if chicken is your thing, you will certainly have your cravings satisfied but is any of it classed as remotely healthy?

With the nutritional profile of all menu items available online, you can make informed menu choices, although tracking down anything nutritionally satisfying can be challenging.

First off, let’s look at the better nutritional options at KFC.

Healthier KFC options:

Original Supercharged Slider

1067kJ / 254cal

11.9g fat

489mg sodium

With a touch of salad, this mini slider offers some protein for less than 300 calories, although you may need a couple to feel remotely satisfied.

Snack Popcorn Chicken

1135kJ / 270cal

15g fat

612mg sodium

There’s no salad, or vegetables, nor is it healthy but if you need a quick protein rich snack on the go, this is one of the lowest calorie menu options.

Original Tenders Crunch Bowl

1794kJ / 427cal

26g fat

871mg sodium

Not overly low in fat, calories or sodium, from a calorie perspective this meal is relatively low compared to most other menu options, and you will get a little fresh salad, which is something.

Stay away from these KFC items:

Zinger Stacker Burger Box

5584kJ / 1330cal

64g fat

3412mg sodium

A quick glance at this meal could suggest it was to feed two people, with a double fried chicken burger along with fried chicken, potato and fries, this is another meal option that offers little other than fat, refined carbs and salt. So much salt, in fact, it comes in close to twice the upper daily recommended intake of the white stuff – not great for our hearts.

Zinger Crunch Twister Box

5020kJ / 1195cal

55g fat

2362mg sodium

Don’t let a wrap with a little salad fool you – that wrap is packed full of fried chicken and mayo and when it’s teamed with mash, fries and fried chicken pieces, you have enough calories and salt for a day. This is minus the other nutritional requirements like vegetables, lean protein and good quality carbs that are required to actually nourish the body.

3 Piece Box

4909kJ / 1170cal

57g fat

1993mg sodium

With a mix of deep-fried chicken and three processed varieties of carbohydrate via fries, mash and a white bread roll, you could go as far as to say there is nothing remotely nutritious in the meal box.

Zinger Burger Box

4362kJ / 1038cal

46g fat

2436 mg sodium

It should not come as a surprise to hear that an order that includes deep fried chicken, fries, mashed potato as well as a burger contains almost as many calories as a small female needs for an entire day. If you then add a regular soft drink to your order, you will also add another 30 plus grams of sugar to this high fat meal option.

Original Tenders Box

4425kJ / 1054cal

58g fat


Do not be fooled and think that crumbed chicken tenders are any healthier than fried chicken, especially when teamed with some extra deep fried chicken bites, mash and a serve of fries. Rather, you will eat more fat than many of us will need in an entire day, a truckload of sodium and the equivalent of two meals worth of calories.

Maxi Popcorn Chicken Combo

4225kJ / 1006cal

53g fat

1766mg sodium

What may look like a simple meal of chicken bites and chips is actually almost a day’s worth of calories and fat and that is not taking in to account the extra 30g of added sugar you will get if you add in a can of soft drink.

Susie Burrell is a dietitian and nutritionist and holds a Master’s degree in coaching psychology.

Originally published as Healthiest KFC menu items that nutritionist would buy

Cristeen Gonzama

Cristeen Gonzales writes about health and medicine. She tends toward stories that reveal the on-the-ground impact of health policy, with a particular focus on the opioid epidemic, Covid-19 and abortion.

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