- All of the dietitians said it’s possible to make mindful, tasty choices at The Cheesecake Factory.
- The Cheesecake Factory’s small plates and SkinnyLicious menus are popular among the dietitians’ recommendations.
- Most of the dietitians recommended splitting an entree or ordering from the SkinnyLicious or small plates menus.
Popular restaurant chain The Cheesecake Factory is known for many things, including their rich, delicious cheesecakes that most diners make sure to save room for.
Even if you’re on a health kick or are trying to be mindful about your meal, some dietitians suggest you can still dine at the chain while making smart choices and saving room to enjoy a slice of the delicious cheesecake (even if you split it with a friend).
INSIDER spoke with six dietitians to find out what they order when they dine at The Cheesecake Factory.
One dietitian said she shares a pasta meal or orders a burger without mayonnaise
Shana Spence, MS, RDN, CDN, said she prefers sharing meals at The Cheesecake Factory since the portions are typically big enough for two people. She told INSIDER that pasta is one of her favourite things to order, but she suggested sticking to the tomato-based sauces. Spence said the Tomato Basil Pasta with grilled chicken and mozzarella is a smart choice.
“Try to avoid the Fettuccine Alfredo and the Pasta Carbonara which are heavy cream-based and are also full of unwanted fat and unnecessary calories,” she added. If she’s in the mood for something else, Spence said she orders the Old Fashioned Burger with a side of fries and no mayonnaise.
This weight-management dietitian said she likes to order from the chain’s SkinnyLicious menu
Summer Yule, MS, RDN, told INSIDER that the SkinnyLicious menu is a great choice if you want to order a nutrient-rich meal that contains a reasonable amount of calories. Yule said she likes to order the Grilled Steak Medallions in wine sauce. It comes with an asparagus and tomato mix and is served on a small bed of mashed potatoes.
She also said the Shrimp Soft Tacos are a tasty and filling meal that comes with a side salad. “This meal is substantial for a low-calorie menu item because it is packed with a lot of non-starchy vegetables as well as lean shrimp,” she explained. Yule said this dish is a great choice if you’re feeling extra hungry. “The protein and high volume from veggies filled with fibre and water will leave you feeling satisfied,” she added.
One dietitian and certified personal trainer suggested choosing a meal that leaves you feeling full, preferably one with protein
Lauren Cadillac, RD and certified personal trainer, said the best thing to order at The Cheesecake Factory is a meal that leaves you feeling pleasantly full. For Cadillac, that means ordering the Farm Fresh Eggs with Grilled Ham for breakfast or brunch and for lunch or dinner, she said she would choose the Seared Tuna Tataki Salad with either the SkinnyLicious Caesar Dressing or SkinnyLicious Mustard Vinaigrette.
She also added that she satisfies her sweet tooth by splitting an apple crisp with someone or enjoying a slice of a low-carb cheesecake.
This dietitian and nutritionist said she opts for a hearty salad
Nancy Robinson, an RDN and osteoporosis specialist who follows the Mediterranean diet, told INSIDER that her go-to Cheesecake Factory order is the Wellness Salad with the addition of either the Edamame or the Ahi Tartare.
“I get a good dose of protein from the Ahi or Edamame and then plenty of fruits and vegetables from the Wellness Salad,” explained Robinson. She said this dish also makes it easy for her to fulfil her daily servings of fruits and vegetables.
Additionally, she said the spinach, kale, and almonds in the salad provide a nice dose of calcium and the avocado is a good source of boron, which Robinson noted is an essential nutrient for your bones.
A sports-nutrition and eating-disorder specialist said she orders one of her favourite meals from the appetizer menu
She said she also enjoys the Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps, especially when she’s looking for something low-carb. Although the wraps may be an appetizer, Smith said when the plate comes out it’s loaded with tons of veggies and protein. But she said to be mindful of how much sauce you use when eating the wraps, as their fat content is what can drive up the number of calories in this dish.
This dietitian recommended sticking with the small plates and snack sections of the menu
Tina Bauermeister, MS, RDN, LD, told INSIDER that one way to try a few different dishes without going overboard is to order multiple dishes from the small plates and snack section of the menu. A few of her favourite small plates include the Greek Salad, Little House Salad, Dynamite Shrimp, and Crispy Crab Bites.
She said a night at The Cheesecake Factory for her would typically involve a Skinny Cosmo (or glass of wine) and the Little House Salad. Then, she would order Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps and Chicken Pot Stickers from the small plate menu and share them with someone. She also said she might finish off her meal with a bite or two of cheesecake.
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