Going to Bella Italia and don’t want to blow your diet – here’s the lowest calorie options on the menu.
When I first wrote this piece back in 2015 Bella Italia’s calories were still a bit of a secret. The team there gave me a few examples of what you could order without completely blowing your diet, but at that point, they hadn’t released nutritional information for everything on their menu – the good news is, as I rework this piece in June 2019, now they have.
The full Bella Italia nutritional information for everything they serve is now fully listed on their website in a three-page document. Good on you Bella Italia.
Now as I’m guessing you don’t want to be scrolling through three pages of calories and fat counts on your night out, I’ve done the digging for you and found not only the absolute lowest calorie option in Bella Italia but also the best choice for each of the different categories on their menu. So here we go – the ultimate guide to Bella Italia calories, starting with…
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The Lowest Calorie Option in Bella Italia
The lowest calorie main course you can order in Bella Italia is, not surprisingly, the Gamberoni Spirali which contains just 259 calories a serving.
I say not surprisingly because the Spirali range was launched by Bella Italia a few years ago to be their healthy offering and the big difference is that it uses spiralised vegetables rather than pasta.
I tried this when it first came out and while I think they’ve probably changed things since then as the calories have increased, it was all absolutely delicious.
The Gamberoni is made with prawns and chillis in a spicy tomato sauce and it’s served over spiralised carrot, beetroot and courgette.
So, that’s what you have if you truly want to be virtuous (and if you liked it, then here’s 32 other ways to swap carbs for fruit or veg options you might want to check out) – but what if you want actual pasta, or, heaven forbid a pizza while counting calories – what should you order then. Here’s the breakdown…
While you Wait and Starters
If you’re looking for a very light starter or just nibbling while you wait for friends to arrive, your order of choice should be the Sicilian Olives which only contain 195 calories a bowl.
Moving up to starters, the lowest calorie choice here might surprise you as it’s actually the calamari at 282 calories – mind you most of the starters on the menu are fried and lots of them have cheese, so a bit of squid would probably be the healthiest option.
Pastas: The absolute lowest calorie pasta dish on the menu is the Gluten-Free Pomodoro Pasta which is just 422 calories. However, I’m not always a fan of gluten-free pasta so personally, I’d rather order a dish containing normal pasta which means picking the Pomodoro Rustii which is just 573 calories.
Interestingly, the one that might sound healthiest as it’s vegan – the Vegan Pollo Pesto – is the worst for calories containing a whopping 1318 per serving.
Pizza: Simple is best here it seems with the Margherita offering the lowest number of calories at 763. Both normal and Roma base have the same. If cheese and tomato seems a bit dull for a night out, try the Cotto with smoked ham, garlic and mushrooms which has 801 calories (or see below for the pizza options in their lighter range).
Salads: The Insalata Giardiniera is not surprisingly your best best – but, it might surprise you to find the lowest calorie topping to add if you want to eat something more than just a plate of veggies – it’s the Goat’s Cheese which adds just 120 calories per serving, the chicken is 167, and the salmon adds 342.
Risotto: So, you’re off pasta for some reason, then Risotto Verdura is your friend at 559 calories.
Calzone: Sorry guys, everything in this section is over 1000 calories a serving – but the Carne is lowest at 1101.
Al Forno: Pick the Traditional Lasagne at 835 calories- the other two are over 1000 each.
The lighter range: I’ve already talked about the Spirali range – interestingly, they really undersell this on the menu as all they say is that the dishes are under 600 calories, but all three of the ‘pasta’ dishes come in at under 300 calories and the Pollo Lentichhie, a dish of chicken and lentils is only 335 – the only ones coming near to 600 are the two half-sized pizza.
Personally, if I’m going to Bella Italia I’m going to pick something that represents the Italia part of the name, but the menu does now offer a selection of grilled dishes as well – so if you don’t fancy Italian, head toward the Meat and Fish section where you can order the Pollo Funghi for 681 calories, or a steak and salad for 525.
The most calorific item on the menu is also in this section – the Rack of Sweet and Sour Ribs which contains 3028 calories! Ouch.
To the best bit and there’s a nice surprise in store – you can finish off your meal with a serve of the Bella Italia Raspberry Ice Cream for just 117 calories – or have a chocolate browning for 396. Not bad.
So there you have it – a guide to the Bella Italia calories – and the dishes that have the fewest of them. If your personal favourite isn’t listed above, and you want to know how many calories it contains, here’s the full list of Bella Italia Menu Calories on their nutritional information sheet.. Have a nice evening.
Low-Calorie Italian Cookbooks to Try
Looking for more low-calorie Italian Choices – here’s a couple of cookbooks that might help.
You can save calories and cash with TV favourite Gino D’Campo’s healthy budget cookbook Gino’s Healthy Italian for Less: 100 feelgood family recipes for under £5.
A few more calories than the above, but a quick walk around the block after your meal will sort that our, you could also try Skinny Pasta: 80 Flavour-packed recipes of under 500 calories by Julia Azzarello. Click to buy this one 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.