There’s a lot of good burgers in Australia, but if you want a ‘healthy’ burger, you take yourself off to Grill’d. They pride themselves on their natural ingredients – there’s no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives in any of their own brand burgers. and they, have all sorts of healthy additions in their range – low carb buns, sweet potato fries, burgers made from mushrooms and Impossible patties.
But, what if, among all that health, you’re interested in the lowest calorie options in Grill’d. and can’t face trying to work out the calories from the kilojoules while standing in a queue. Our guide to Grill’d calories does the hard work for you…
This piece was first written Sept 2020. You’re reading the update as of August 4th 2022.
The Lowest Calorie Grill’d Burger
There’s a lot of burgers to choose from on the Grill’d menu but, overall, the absolute lowest-calorie burger in Grill’d is the chicken-based Hot Bird at 428 calories (1800kj).
Now, this might surprise you if you were simply reading the menu as it has sour cream in it – and that’s not normally associated with low-calorie anything – that’s why I love doing this posts, there’s always something that surprises me.
Now, what if you don’t want a chicken burger – then what’s the lowest calorie option for you in Grill’d?
Let’s Start With the Beef Burgers…
The lowest calorie beef burger at Grill’d is the Mustard & Pickled which has 526 calories (2210kj).
This has all pretty much all the basics you want in a burger – grass-fed beef pattie, cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles and mustard.
As you’d expect the chicken burgers score a bit better on the Grill’d calories scale and, as we said, for the absolute lowest you’re looking at the HotBird at 428 calories (1800kj) – a drop of 72 calories from when we first wrote this post.
Another good contender would be the new HFC Bonfire BBQ at 490 calories (2060kj)
To be fair though, there’s not a huge amount of difference in calories between the HotBird and the Sweet Chilli Chicken, the Zen Hen and the Simon Says which all contain fewer than 521 calories.
Healthy Fried Chicken
Yes, I’m aware that might sound like a contradiction in terms, but Grill’d have a range of chicken fried in extra virgin olive oil which means it’s lower in saturated fat than chicken fried in traditional oils. The HFC Classic has just 2.7g of saturated fat which is less than the grilled chicken Brie and Bird burger.
But, what about the calories you ask.
The lowest calorie Healthy Fried Chicken burger is the HFC Smokey which mixes fried chicken with chipotle mayonnaise, dill pickles, slaw and Spanish onion.
It has 476 calories (2000kj)
Frying in Olive Oil?
And before you think ‘I didn’t think it was healthy to fry in olive oil’ – it’s actually fine.
As dietician Angela Dowden explained when we wrote the book The Macro Method together, ‘oil that is good for cooking has few double bonds and few fatty acids – and olive oil ticks both of those boxes.’ Admittedly, extra virgin oil has a lower smoke point than non-virgin which would be better to fry with, but, the basic point still stands.
The whole point of Wagyu beef is that it’s fatty and juicy so not surprisingly, the Wagyu burgers contain more calories than most of the other offerings at Grill’d, but if you are picking one the Sir Truffle has the ‘lowest’ calories – at 647 per burger (2720kj).
Lamb is not the lowest calorie meat, but of the two Lamb Burgers on the Grill’d menu, the Mary’s Little Lamb is the lowest calorie choice at 540 calories (2270kj).
When I first wrote this piece, the Plant-Based part of the Grill’d menu actually racked up some of the highest calories – but, things have changed since then and not only have the plant-based options exploded in number, they’re now all pretty low in calories.
The lowest calorie plant-based burger is the Impossible Simply Grill’d at 492 calories (2070kj) – this combines an Impossible pattie with lettuce, tomato, onion, relish and mayo.
The lowest ‘veggie’ option is the Garden Goodness which includes cheese, avocado, beetroot, lettuce, tomato and onion alongside a veg-based patty is 490 calories (2060kj)
If you’re vegan, go for the Vegan Garden Goodness at 528 calories (2220kj) -it’s the same formula as the Garden Goodness but uses vegan cheese and mayonnaise.
Your Other Grill’d Questions Answered…
So there you have it – the round-up of burger-based Grill’d calories – but what if you want a side dish or a salad? Or decide to swap your bun – what’s the deal there. Your questions are answered…
The Lowest Calorie Fries in Grill’d
It’s the Sweet Potato Chips at 236 calories a serving for one (992kj).
There’s a fairly hefty saving between these and the normal fries. even a snack portion of the normal chips is 330 calories (1390kj).
Oh and those Zucchini chips might sound saintly being a veggie and all, but they have 273 calories (1150kj) in a single serve.
If like me, chips of any kind do not come without dip, your best choice is the Tomato Relish Chip Dip at 35 calories (150kj).
What’s the Deal with the Grill’d Low Carb SuperBun?
All of Grill’d’s buns aim to be low sugar, but their special Low Carb Superbun takes things to another level and the company claim that most of their burgers ordered on a low-carb bun will contain fewer carbs than the average sushi roll.
It’s made from almond meal, eggs, coconut cream, honey, tapioca flour and psyllium husk, and it contains fewer than 9g of carbs per 100g of bun.
When I first wrote this post I couldn’t find an exact number for the low carb bun calories or how many calories you save (or gain) when swapping to a Low Carb bun from a traditional bun on their website.
But now, that option comes in the menu itself (well done guys) – and it seems that a Grill’d Low Carb Bun contains 199 calories (840kj)
You can now see exactly what difference changing your bun makes and how a traditional bun vs a panini affects things – and as a rule it’s this…
The traditional bun is the lowest calories – 159 calories (670kj)
Upgrading to a panini adds just 2.5 calories (10kj)
The Low Carb Superbun adds 40 calories (170kj)
A Gluten-Free Bun adds 114 calories (480kj)
That means you’re not going to save calories by ordering a low-carb bun – but, if you’re on a low-carb diet, or avoiding wheat for some reason, it is a good choice.
The Grill’d team also told me ‘our nutrition reports also confirm it to be a good source of magnesium, calcium, phosphorus and iron while also providing 100% of your daily needs for vitamin E!’
How Many Carbs are in the Grill’d Low Carb Bun?
This information isn’t clearly available on the website, you have to do a little bit of maths to guesstimate it.
Basically, a ‘naked’ Simply Grill’d burger has 9g of carbs in it. If you add a Low-Carb Bun this goes up to 11.4g – which, logic would dictate, means that the Low-Carb Super Bun has 2.4g of carbs in it.
Compare that to the 36g of carbs that’s in the burger with a traditional bun and it’s a pretty hefty saving.
Can You Go Keto at Grill’d?
Yes… in fact, they give you a how-to guide suggesting that ordering either a Chicken or Wagyu burger with the low carb bun fits into a keto diet – or, you can ask for any of the burgers without any bun at all which obviously fits the bill.
Also watch out for higher sugar add ons like carrot or beetroot in which ever ready-made burger you choose. You might want to build your own burger and choose the less carby/sugary add ons.
What About Gluten-Free?
The offer specific gluten-free buns and the Low-Carb Bun also doesn’t contain gluten.
Most of the burgers are gluten free – the exception is the vegan ‘beef’ pattie which does contain gluten.
Is Grill’d Fodmap-Friendly?
They cover this in their menu suggestions – they recommend a gluten-free bun with a Chicken or Waguy patty – also remember to check the other ingredients. You can ask for things like onions to be left off if they’re in your no-go list.
Are Grill’d Salads Low Calorie?
One of the reasons I do this kind of post is to stop people ordering salads that actually contain more calories than the thing they really wanted to eat in the first place. It’s surprisingly common.
Grill’d offer three salads and the lowest calorie one, the Chicken Pom Salad has just 361 calories (1520kj) however, this doesn’t mean all of them are… the next lowest in calories, the Superpower Salad has 588 calories (2470kj) – that’s roughly the same as the Simply Grill’d and more than both the Field Day and the HotBird.
The Chicken Caesar has 704 calories (2960kj) – far higher than lots of burgers on the menu.
I’m not saying the salad is an unhealthy choice – the Superpower Salad particularly contains heaps more veggies than you’ll get in a burger for starters, but if you’re ordering it purely because you’re trying to cut calories, you can find lower calorie options on the menu (if you skip the sides).
So there you have it. Our guide to Grill’d calories and the lowest calorie choices you can make. Did we miss anything? Make a note in the comments if we did and we’ll try and find out the answer for you.
What to Read Next
If you liked this, you might also like our guide to what to order in some other Australian chains.
If Mad Mex is your favourite then our guide to calories in Mad Mex is where you’ll find the best choices to order there.
If you’re more of a Guzman y Gomez fan, that’s okay, we’re a big fan of them to and so we decided to check out the choices there too. Find the Guzman y Gomez calorie guide here.
Lastly, we couldn’t forget the other Mexican chain – Zambrero. Can you tell we like Mexican around these parts. Find the quick guide to what to order in Zambrero if you’re watching your calories here.
Who is The Wellness Nerd?
My name is Helen Foster and I’m a health journalist and wellness author. Publications I’ve written for include Women’s Health, Reader’s Digest, Body and Soul, Good Health at the Daily Mail and more. I have also written 16 books on health and nutrition.