Eating good in the neighborhood has never felt worse.
According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Applebee’s boasts one of the unhealthiest menu items in America. Unfortunately, this food bomb lands on your table before you even order an entree.
Applebee’s build-your-sampler offers a combo platter of two to five appetizers. If you order the combination of cheeseburger egg rolls, pretzels and beer cheese dip, chicken quesadillas, boneless buffalo wings and spinach and artichoke dip, you’re staring down a whopping 3,390 calories, 11,650 milligrams of sodium and 65 grams of fat.
Even if you and your friends split that platter four ways, each diner would still consume about 850 calories ― and that’s before the entrees arrive. One chicken tenders basket at Applebee’s can add another 1,160 calories and 2,540 milligrams of sodium to your meal. Throw in a blue ribbon brownie bite for dessert and you basically ate for two.
“At Applebee’s we offer our guests a wide variety of items to tailor each visit to their specific dining needs,” Applebee’s executive director of communications Steve Coe wrote in a statement to The Huffington Post. He pointed out that the appetizer combo plates in question are designed to share ― and that calorie-conscious customers can choose from a menu of low-calorie options.
To be fair, Applebee’s isn’t the only restaurant chain making food gnarly again this year. CSPI’s Xtreme Eating Awards honor ― or rather, shame ― the unhealthiest menu items at popular chain restaurants, and other “winners” include The Cheesecake Factory’s fried chicken and waffles benedict, Dave & Buster’s short rib and cheesy mac stack and Uno Pizzeria & Grill’s whole hog burger. That last menu option contains hamburger, sausage, bacon, prosciutto and pepperoni, in case you were wondering. And if you feel like getting extra wild on cheat day, you can swing by Buffalo Wild Wings for their dessert nachos.
Feast your eyes upon what chain restaurants hath wrought, America. May the gods of fast casual dining have mercy on our souls.
This post has been updated to include additional quotes.