This Is the Healthiest Meal to Order at Nando’s, According to a Top Nutritionist

You'll even get 36g of muscle-boosting protein. What's not to like?

Edward Cooper |

With over 300 Nando’s restaurants across SA, it’s hardly surprising that the peri-peri behemoth has become one of the most popular spots to eat in the country. Innovative, cheerful and seriously tasty, it’s even won the love of fitness fanatics too, as the menu offers numerous healthy sides, starters and mains.

Related: The Top 6 Healthy Takeaways And Cafés In South Africa

When it comes to building muscle through your diet, a plate of grilled chicken takes some beating. But what should you order with it? Plain rice? Grilled veg? For those looking after their body and paying close attention to nutrition, navigating a restaurant menu can often be difficult, with more hidden calories and sore spots than you can shake a chicken drumstick at. But your food choices shouldn’t be a stress, especially when it comes to ordering from a Nando’s menu.

To help you digest it all, Men’s Health spoke to George Hamlyn-Williams, principal dietitian at The Hospital Group, to get his steer on the hidden heroes of the Nando’s menu.

“We know that eating out can be a challenge for people watching their weight, often looking straight to the salad section of the menu – but it really doesn’t need to be that way,” said Hamlyn-Williams. “Many menus now offer a wide variety of meals, from low calorie to high protein, you just need to know what to look out for.”

Related: These 4 Asian Takeaway Favourites Have Been Given A Healthy Revamp, Here’s How You Can DIY And Enjoy Them Guilt Free

When it came to assembling his MVPeri-Peri menu choice, he looked for several key factors:

  • Has a lower energy density (400-600kcal for a full portion)
  • Contains low amounts of saturated fat (<1.5g)
  • Contains one portion of lean protein
  • Contains at least one to two portions of vegetables and is relatively high in fibre
  • Is prepared by grilling/steaming rather than frying

His recommendation?

Nando’s grilled chicken breast in a pita (get it here), served with chargrilled vegetables and a mixed leaf salad. At just 401kcal, it won’t derail your fitness goals or send you into a food-shame spiral, but instead, feed your muscles and satiate your appetite. The dish packs a welcome 36g of muscle-building protein, with a measly 1.5g of saturated fat.

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“Chargrilled vegetables and the mixed leaf salad add 115kcal to your meal, instead of the 745kcal added by peri-peri chips and coleslaw,” the dietician explained. “It also adds a valuable source of fibre which helps maintain a healthy digestive system and a range of vitamins and minerals for optimum health.”

Sounds good to us. We’ll let you decide how hot to go.

*This article was originally published on Men’s Health UK

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