Low Sodium Fast Food Options: Taco Bells, Subway, McDonald’s

Low-Sodium Fast-food Options

A list of low sodium fast food options is presented here. The aim is to help people with heart disease, hypertension, and kidney diseases choose the meal that has the lowest amounts of salt and enjoy it at the same time.

However, apart from salt, fast foods also contain lots of calories and are mostly fried, so their use should be minimized.

What should be your daily sodium limit?

People who want to stay fit or have some chronic health conditions like high blood pressure often shift to a low-sodium diet.

Lowering salt intake greatly reduces blood pressure and is very beneficial for other conditions such as edema.

If you want to cut on sodium, unfortunately, the fast-food menus are not a very good option. Even the smallest meals from a fast-food restaurant can easily exceed the daily limit of sodium.


What are low-sodium foods?

A food product is called a low-sodium food when it contains only 140mg of sodium (5%) or even less in one serving.

But as far as fast food is concerned, it cannot go that low in sodium.

For healthy people, the FDA recommends going for foods that provide less than 20% daily value of sodium.

The recommended amount of sodium on a 2000-calorie diet is 2300mg, which makes 460mg its 20%.

How much salt can we consume on a low-sodium diet?

Low sodium diets vary from mild, to moderate to extreme sodium restriction. But in general, a low-sodium diet means a daily consumption of less than 1500mg of sodium.

Foods that provide 5% of DV (140 mg) can be consumed on a low-sodium diet.

While available reduced-sodium fast food options may not always fulfill the FDA’s recommendation, some tips to reduce your salt intake from fast foods include:

  • Avoid super-sized or jumbo meals, these are red flags because they contain double amounts of salt and fat.
  • Stick to water, drinks like mint margaritas, lemonades, fresh limes, and even soft drinks contain sodium.
  • Opt for oatmeal and Greek yogurt options for breakfast, these are low in sodium
  • Avoid heavy cream and mayo sauce, these are loaded with sodium.
  • Go for grilled or steamed foods instead of fried ones.

The recommended sodium intake in various conditions is given in the table below:

Health Condition

Recommended Sodium Intake (per day)

Normal Person2,300 milligrams (mg) or less
Hypertension1,500 mg or less
Heart Disease1,500 mg or less
Diabetes2,300 mg or less
Kidney DiseaseTypically restricted to 1,000-2,000 mg or less
Liver Disease2,000 mg or less
Pregnant Women2,300 mg or less
Children (4-18 years)1,500-2,300 mg or less



Why is an excess of sodium bad?

Salt, also known as sodium chloride, is a mixture of 40 % sodium and 60 % chloride. Salt is a condiment that we use in our meals to enhance the flavor of foods.

It’s also utilized in the food industry as a preservative. While salt is necessary for our diets for our bodies and organs to operate properly, too much salt can cause water retention and high blood pressure, putting you at risk for heart disease.

Low Sodium Fast Food Options:

Here are some of the low-sodium foods that are available at various restaurants.

Although these contain fewer amounts of salt, they still aren’t suitable for daily consumption while you are on a low-sodium diet.

Subway’s veggie delight sandwich:

Although there aren’t many low-sodium options at Subway, this one 6-inch sandwich contains 12 percent of your sodium DV for 190 when ordered with Subway’s 9-grain Wheat bread.

This sandwich has one of the lowest sodium counts on the Subway menu, making it a good choice for sodium-restricted diets.

Macdonald’s Fruit Oatmeal:

McDonald’s menu is quite the opposite of a low-sodium diet. But surprisingly this breakfast option contains only 140mg of salt. It is absolutely a healthy option on a restricted diet.

Here are some other low sodium fast food options at McDonald’s:

Low sodium fast food options at McDonald’s

Salt Content

Side Salad without Dressing10 mg
Small French Fry130 mg
Fruit and Maple Oatmeal160 mg
Hot apple pie170 mg
Bacon Ranch Salad without chicken or dressing320 mg
Hamburger480 mg

Dunkin Donut’s Multigrain Oatmeal:

Dunkin’ Donuts’ Multigrain Oatmeal low sodium fast foods
Dunkin’ Donuts’ Multigrain Oatmeal

Dunkin Donuts’ oatmeal bowl topped with nuts and dried fruits is nutritious and low in sodium. It contains only 250 mg of sodium with 7 grams of fiber.

It has some sugar in it, but not quite as much as those Munchkins glaring at you from the counter

Burger King’s Chicken Nuggets:

Burger King’s chicken nuggets are a much healthier option than burgers and sandwiches if you’re limiting your sodium intake.

In reality, a 4-piece meal of chicken nuggets has 495 mg of sodium which is less than half of the sodium in a Whopper and a fourth of the sodium in a Big King.

When you crave nuggets on a sodium-restricted diet, you can go for these. And you can also reduce the sodium by eating half of the serving (2 nuggets).

KFC – Low Sodium Meal Options:

A low-sodium meal is possible at KFC. Some of the low-sodium foods from KFC’s menu are:

  • Grilled chicken wings: 180 mg
  • Chocolate chip cookies: 70 mg
  • Hot wings: 140 mg

Taco Bell – Low Sodium Options:

Some of the low-sodium options at Taco Bell include:

  • Hash brown (contains 270 mg sodium)
  • Beef crunchy taco (310 mg sodium)
  • Cinnamon delights (80 mg sodium in a pack of 2)

Low-sodium food options at home:

home made mix vegetable burger low sodium fast food options best fast food options for diabetics
Homemade mix vegetable burger: low sodium fast food options

It’s easier to make a low-sodium supper at home. You can make a variety of salads and low-sodium vegetarian sandwiches with minimum effort.

Homemade foods are beneficial because you can manage the quantity of salt, sugar, and fat in your meals.

Small changes that you must make in your daily cooking habits include:

  • Avoid or reduce the use of processed, cured, smoked, and ready-to-cook meats because they are high in sodium
  • Substitute meats with fresh poultry and fish
  • Avoid using canned fruits and vegetables because they have a high salt content. Use canned fruits labeled as “low-sodium” or “sodium-free”
  • Use less amount of salt while cooking.
  • Avoid adding salt to flour unless necessary.

How to find sodium on food labels?

Food labels often do not use the words salt or sodium in the ingredients list. To select foods that are low in sodium, you must know other names that are used on the food labels.

These include:

  • Sodium ascorbate
  • Sodium caseinate
  • Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)
  • Sodium benzoate
  • Sodium Alginate
  • Sodium chloride
  • Sodium citrate
  • Sodium hydroxide
  • Sodium saccharin
  • Disodium phosphate
  • Monosodium glutamate (MSG)
  • Trisodium phosphate


Salt is an important component of our meals and cannot entirely be eliminated from our diets.

However, it’s important to keep a check on your daily salt intake to avoid harmful consequences, especially for people with certain chronic health conditions.

Reading food labels and inquiring about the salt content of foods at restaurants, or making special instructions for your meals can also be helpful.

However, you can’t indulge in a fast-food meal now and then. For certain situations, they are simple, inexpensive, and time-saving.

But having fast food daily is not a good idea when you are on restrictive diets.

Here is a table summarizing low sodium fast food options at renowned restaurants:

Fast Food Restaurants Near Me

Low-Sodium Option

Sodium Content

SubwayVeggie Delight Sandwich190 mg
McDonald’sFruit Oatmeal140 mg
Dunkin DonutsOatmeal Bowl with Nuts and Dried Fruits250 mg
Burger KingChicken Nuggets (4-piece)495 mg
KFCGrilled Chicken Wings180 mg
KFCChocolate Chip Cookies70 mg
KFCHot Wings140 mg
Taco BellHash Brown270 mg
Taco BellBeef Crunchy Taco310 mg
Taco BellCinnamon Delights (2-pack)80 mg

What do you think?

Written by Dr. Ahmed

I am Dr. Ahmed (MBBS; FCPS Medicine), an Internist and a practicing physician. I am in the medical field for over fifteen years working in one of the busiest hospitals and writing medical posts for over 5 years.

I love my family, my profession, my blog, nature, hiking, and simple life. Read more about me, my family, and my qualifications

Here is a link to My Facebook Page. You can also contact me by email at or at My Twitter Account
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