Cheese fries may be your secret indulgent snack, but you may be getting more calories than you realize. A small, 3-ounce portion with an ounce of shredded cheese has more than 360 calories. If you prepare the cheese fries at home though, you can make some variations to lighten up your grub.
A 3-ounce portion of French fries contains around 245 to 275 calories. Pile on an ounce of shredded cheddar cheese and you’ll get another 115 calories. Also keep in mind that more than half the calories in cheese fries come from fat. Only around 10 percent of the calories are from protein, while the remaining 40 percent come from carbohydrates.
A Lighter Alternative
By baking fries instead of frying them, your 3-ounce serving will cost you less than 140 calories. Top them off with 1 ounce of shredded reduced-fat cheddar for another 90 calories. By making these two small changes, you shave off more than 130 calories. Plus, you cut the percentage of fat down to 40 percent, while protein goes up to 15 percent of the calories with carbs making up approximately 45 percent in this baked alternative.
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- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: McDonald's, French Fries
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Restaurant, Family Style, French Fries
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Cheese, Cheddar
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Potatoes, French Fried, All Types, Salt Added in Processing, Frozen, Home-Prepared, Oven Heated
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Cheese, Cheddar, Reduced Fat
Melodie Anne Coffman specializes in overall wellness, with particular interests in women's health and personal defense. She holds a master's degree in food science and human nutrition and is a certified instructor through the NRA. Coffman is pursuing her personal trainer certification in 2015.