Olive Garden

Deceptive little place isn't it? Common sense tells you to avoid the pasta, the cream soups and sauces....

Nothing rings a bell in your head when they bring out that nice salad for you.

Until you get home and realize that since you ate two plates of salad your lunch was over 700 calories!!!!! :noway: :noway: :noway: :grumble: :grumble: :grumble: :grumble: :explode: :explode: :explode: :explode:

I don't like going to olive garden anyway because I LOVE alfredo sauce and their breadsticks so it's temptation galore there.

But I got roped into going (no one told me we were headed there until we were on the way already or I would have not gone period) today for lunch with my grandmother and her friends because they like the soup and salad deal.

So I was frustrated and upset and I figured, I'll just have some salad and get one of their garden fare things. I ate a 4 ounce breast of chicken and two plates of salad.

For a WHOPPING 896 CALORIES.

I'm not even full!
«1

Replies

  • astridfeline
    astridfeline Posts: 1,200 Member
    What in the world was in the salad?
  • jacmiley
    jacmiley Posts: 202 Member
    I used to work at an Olive Garden - It is a calorie trap. Like you, I LOVE their alfredo.
  • What in the world was in the salad?

    Dressing and croutons. I only ate two croutons but they don't exactly have a "No croutons" option. -_-
  • Shanta1983
    Shanta1983 Posts: 1,228 Member
    Ok dats what I want to know what was in that salad...my gosh ....:noway: :noway: :bigsmile: :huh:
  • kvcarden
    kvcarden Posts: 175
    When I go I ask for the fat free italian dressing...it tastes the same just a little thinner (not as thick) but it will help reduce some of the fat and calories significantly!
  • Next time ask for fat-free dressing. They will bring it to you on the side rather than already on the salad. I'm sure that would save a lot of calories.
  • sincereme
    sincereme Posts: 276
    Deceptive little place isn't it? Common sense tells you to avoid the pasta, the cream soups and sauces....

    Nothing rings a bell in your head when they bring out that nice salad for you.

    Until you get home and realize that since you ate two plates of salad your lunch was over 700 calories!!!!! :noway: :noway: :noway: :grumble: :grumble: :grumble: :grumble: :explode: :explode: :explode: :explode:

    I don't like going to olive garden anyway because I LOVE alfredo sauce and their breadsticks so it's temptation galore there.

    But I got roped into going (no one told me we were headed there until we were on the way already or I would have not gone period) today for lunch with my grandmother and her friends because they like the soup and salad deal.

    So I was frustrated and upset and I figured, I'll just have some salad and get one of their garden fare things. I ate a 4 ounce breast of chicken and two plates of salad.

    For a WHOPPING 896 CALORIES.

    I'm not even full!


    I think most of the calories were in the dressing. I looked it up and their Garden-Fresh Salad (One serving with dressing) has 350 calories...OMG that is crazy. Garden-Fresh Salad (One serving without dressing) 120 = Big difference.

    here is their nutrition info if anyone wants to take a look:
    http://www.olivegarden.com/menus/garden_fare/nutrition_information.asp
  • RedHotRunner
    RedHotRunner Posts: 850 Member
    Next time ask for fat-free dressing. They will bring it to you on the side rather than already on the salad. I'm sure that would save a lot of calories.

    That's how I order all of my salads now. Dressing on the side. And always ask for low-fat options.
  • sarabear
    sarabear Posts: 864
    On the side and I dip my fork, you'd be surprised with the amount you can be satisfied with when dipping :wink:
  • the salad dressing is 80 cal for 2 tab spoons. they always put two ramekins per salad. each ramekin is 1.5 oz, therefore 3 tbl per ramikin. That is an extra 240 calories just in dressing. My husband and i go and get the toscano soup. 189 cal a serving. ask for only half the dressing and no croutons.

    But I think the hardest is the bread by far. so I only take and inch or two off and dip in my soup. then i try to walk or run for 30 45 min. It helps me feel better. At least i burned off the small pieces of bread. Good luck.

    oh BTW, your friends sound like they tricked you by not telling you where they were going. Take that as a hint to prepare yourself and start phyching yourself out next time you don't know where you are going.
  • maurierose
    maurierose Posts: 575 Member
    Yikes! I'll remember that - I've learned that some places you can't even ask for "Low Fat" dressings and get a decent meal... I had a honey-mustard salad dressing at a deli that had 0 grams of fat and more calories than I've ever seen in a "low fat" dressing! I've learned to ask for a "low calorie" dressing - I don't care if it has a little bit of healthy fat (olive oil, avocado base, sesame seed oil, etc) as long as the CALORIES are low.
  • mrd232
    mrd232 Posts: 331
    The "low fat" dressing business is sketchy all the same. If it's not filled with funky vegetable oil, it's filled with emulsifiers, sugar, corn syrup, preservatives, sweeteners and other garbage. Same for a lot of vinaigrettes. Instead of leaving a natural tartness of vinegar, they're subdued with mass quantities of sugar / sweetener. Blech. No thanks.

    The best bet, hands down, is to get out the standard bottles of olive oil (and HOPE that they're actually EVOO and not a cheap vegetable knockoff) and red wine vinegar. They're at nearly every salad bar and OG has them, too...sometimes right at the table. If you're looking for flavor, a lot of Italian places can bring out some gorgonzola crumbles, crushed red pepper, or dried oregano.

    A reasonable pre-made dressing is usually a lite dijon or mustard vinaigrette. They're usually not sugary and don't contain too many (if any) funky ingredients.
  • 1Corinthians13
    1Corinthians13 Posts: 5,296 Member
    Yes, I ask for the low fat dressing on the side, I TRY to avoid the breadsticks and alfredo, and I love the apricot chicken. It's plenty and I think within the 300 calorie range.
  • mnichol
    mnichol Posts: 642
    We're planning on going there for dinner tonight, I couldn't believe the calorie count for the salad!! :noway: Usually italian dressing isn't that bad!! maybe i'll have soup instead!! :grumble:
  • 1Corinthians13
    1Corinthians13 Posts: 5,296 Member
    I've even started not using any dressing on salads b/c of the calorie count. Just salt and pepper works. For me anyway. And really - try the apricot chicken! With veggies instead of pasta. If it even comes with pasta, I forget. So good!
  • nolachick
    nolachick Posts: 3,278 Member
    I am trying to figure out what to have for dinner tonight! I only have 900 calories left for dinner but their menu is so high calorie! I love their salads but the calorie count is crazy.

    any healthy suggestions?
  • ali258
    ali258 Posts: 403
    When I go to Olive Garden, I either go for my free meal, or I get minestrone soup with salad (dressing on the side, no croutons), or whole wheat pasta with marinara sauce. You still have to watch portions, and if you're going with nice people, they can either not order bread, or put it out of your reach.
  • nolachick
    nolachick Posts: 3,278 Member
    They do have an apricot chicken for the low price of 380 cals but its with veggies and I gotta have my pasta if I'm going to OG. lol
    we'll see, this might be my free meal cuz I don't wanna hold back too much and spend money on a dinner I could have made at home.
  • DrBorkBork
    DrBorkBork Posts: 4,099 Member
    Live & learn. I knew the salad was death, especially with all that dressing! And the cheese they put on? My gosh!

    Next time, avoid the salad, eat 1 bread stick, and order the parmesan crusted tilapia. Ask the waiter to bring you a to-go box with your meal. Place all of the pasta & 1/2 the fish in the box. Enjoy the remainder of your meal (fish & veggies). It's AMAZING. You can even ask to replace the pasta with extra veggies. Also ask for no salt on them.

    That's how you survive OG.
  • Oompa_Loompa
    Oompa_Loompa Posts: 1,099 Member
    Deceptive little place isn't it? Common sense tells you to avoid the pasta, the cream soups and sauces....

    Nothing rings a bell in your head when they bring out that nice salad for you.

    Until you get home and realize that since you ate two plates of salad your lunch was over 700 calories!!!!! :noway: :noway: :noway: :grumble: :grumble: :grumble: :grumble: :explode: :explode: :explode: :explode:

    I don't like going to olive garden anyway because I LOVE alfredo sauce and their breadsticks so it's temptation galore there.

    But I got roped into going (no one told me we were headed there until we were on the way already or I would have not gone period) today for lunch with my grandmother and her friends because they like the soup and salad deal.

    So I was frustrated and upset and I figured, I'll just have some salad and get one of their garden fare things. I ate a 4 ounce breast of chicken and two plates of salad.

    For a WHOPPING 896 CALORIES.

    I'm not even full!

    OMG!!! I looooooooooooooooove olive garden. The breadsticks dipped in the alfredo sauce..oo my mouth is watering! So good and I can put like at least 5 or 5 of those breadsticks down. But I looked into their nutritional values last week just out of curiosity and there is NOTHING on there menu that is a healthier choice. NOTHING! I was surprised but the "healthiest" meal I put together was like 800 calories..ughh no more olive garden for me :sad: :sad: :sad: