Leaderboard ad

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Fast Food Wars: Little Caesers

Little Caesers is the 2nd pizza restaurant to be subjected to analysis in the Fast Food Wars. According to the Little Caesers Wikipedia entry, Little Caeser’s is the third largest carry-out pizza restaurant chain in the U.S. Currently, there are around 2,000 locations, down from a peak of around 5,000 in the 1990s.

As a reminder, the analyses conducted below are based on a formula I created called the UHI (UnHealthy Index). The UHI is calculated by taking the six most common nutritional concerns that people have (total calories, saturated fat, trans fats, cholesterol, sodium, and carbohydrates), adding them together, and dividing by six. Higher UHI scores reflect unhealthier foods and scores closer to zero (i.e., water) reflect healthier foods.

Only the items advertised on the Little Caeser’s website were analyzed. All pizza analyses below were performed based on a serving size being equal to one slice.

UNHEALTHIEST FOODS OVERALL:


First, let’s start with the five foods on the Little Caeser’s menu with the highest UHI  scores. By far, the absolute unhealthiest food you can purchase at Little Caesers is the…

1. Three Meat Treat Pizza. It contains pepperoni, Italian sausage, and bacon. One slice of this bad boy has 350 calories, 8 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 40 mg of cholesterol, 730 mg of salt, and 30 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI score: 193.

2. Buffalo Dipping Sauce, one container. Total calories: = 140, saturated fat = 2 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 0 grams, sodium = 940 mg, carbohydrates = 4 grams. Total UHI = 181.

3. Baby Pan! Pan!, Pepperoni, one pan. Total calories: = 360, saturated fat = 7 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 35 grams, sodium = 610 mg, carbohydrates = 33 grams. Total UHI = 174.167.

4. Deep Dish Pizza, Pepperoni, one slice.Total calories = 360, saturated fat = 6 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 30 grams, sodium = 610 mg, carbohydrates = 38 grams. Total UHI = 174.

5. Ultimate Supreme Pizza, one slice: It contains pepperoni, onion, Italian sausage, mushroom, and green pepper. Total calories = 310, saturated fat = 6 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 30 grams, sodium = 640 mg, carbohydrates = 31 grams. Total UHI = 169.5.

UNHEALTHIEST ITEMS BY NUTRITIONAL CATEGORY:


Highest calories: 380 (Buttery garlic dip, 1 container).

Highest saturated fat: 9 grams (Buttery garlic dip, 1 container)

Highest trans fat: NONE. Little Caeser’s reports using no trans fats in any of their food products. Good job!

Highest cholesterol: 40 g (Three Meat Treat Pizza). Serving size: one slice

Highest sodium: 840 mg (Buffalo dip, 1 container)

Highest carbohydrates: 38 grams (Deep Dish Pizza, pepperoni and Deep Dish Pizza, just cheese). Serving size: one slice.

UNHEALTHIEST APPETIZERS AND SIDE ITEMS:


Keep in mind that Little Caesers only has 8 appetizers and side items, so the items listed towards the bottom can also be seen as some of their healthier items as well.

The unhealthiest appetizer or side item you can purchase at Little Caeser’s are the

1. Caeser’s wings (hot). Each wing contains 60 calories, 1 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 20 mg of cholesterol, 430 mg of salt, and 1 gram of carbohydrates. Total UHI score: 85.3.

2. Pepperoni cheese bread, 16-piece order. : Total calories = 160, saturated fat = 3 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 15 grams, sodium = 280 mg, carbohydrates = 16 grams. Total UHI = 79. Serving size: one piece.

2. Pepperoni cheese bread, 10-piece order. : Total calories = 150, saturated fat = 3 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 15 grams, sodium = 280 mg, carbohydrates = 13 grams. Total UHI = 76.83. Serving size: one piece.

4. Italian cheese bread: Total calories = 130, saturated fat = 2.5 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 10 grams, sodium = 230 mg, carbohydrates = 13 grams. Total UHI = 64.25. Serving size: one piece.
   
5. Caeser’s wings, mild: Total calories = 60, saturated fat = 1 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 20 grams, sodium = 290 mg, carbohydrates = 1 gram. Total UHI = 62. Serving size: one wing.

DIPPING SAUCES:

Little Caeser’s has 6 dips to choose from and one sauce (Crazy Sauce). By far the most unhealthiest dipping sauce is the Buffalo sauce, with a UHI of 181. This is because it has 940 mg of sodium in each small container! The 2nd highest UHI in this category comes from the buttery garlic dip (134.83). The healthiest dip sauce is the ranch, with a UHI of 108.67. However, if you want something much healthier to dip in, go with the Crazy Sauce, which has a UHI of only 52.5.

HEALTHIEST FOODS OVERALL:

1. The healthiest item you can purchase at Little Caesers (excluding beverages, dips, and sauces), is the Caeser’s wings, oven roasted. Each wing has only 50 calories, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 20 mg of cholesterol, 150 mg of salt, and 10 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI: 36.83.

2. Crazy bread. Each piece has only 100 calories, 0.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 15 mg of cholesterol, 380 mg of salt, and 3 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI: 44.25. My personal favorite.

3. Caeser’s wings barbecue. Every wing has 70 calories, 1 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 20 mg of cholesterol, 220 mg of salt, and 3 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI: 52.33.

4. Caeser’s wings, mild, one wing. Total calories = 60, saturated fat = 1 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 20 grams, sodium = 290 mg, carbohydrates = 1 gram. Total UHI = 62.

5. Italian cheese bread, one piece. Total calories = 130, saturated fat = 2.5 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 10 grams, sodium = 230 mg, carbohydrates = 13 grams. Total UHI = 64.25.

HEALTHIEST PIZZA OVERALL:


1. The healthiest pizza you can purchase at Little Caesers is the

14" Round HOT-N-READY Pizza, Just Cheese. Each slice has only 240 calories, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 20 mg of cholesterol, 410 mg of salt, and 30 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI: 117.42.

2. Vegetarian pizza. This pizza contains mushroom, black olives, tomatoes, onion, and green pepper. Each slice has 270 calories, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 20 mg of cholesterol, 530 mg of salt, and 32 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI: 142.75.

3. 14" Round HOT-N-READY Pizza, Pepperoni. Every slice has 280 calories, 5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 25 mg of cholesterol, 520 mg of salt, and 30 grams of carbohydrates. Total UHI: 143.33.

4. Deep dish, pizza, just cheese, one slice. Total calories = 320, saturated fat = 5 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 25 grams, sodium = 490 mg, carbohydrates = 38 gram. Total UHI = 146.33.

5. Hula Hawaiin, pineapple and ham, one slice. Total calories = 270, saturated fat = 4.5 grams, trans fat = 0 grams, cholesterol = 25 grams, sodium = 600 mg, carbohydrates = 33 grams. Total UHI = 155.42.

Note: Soft drinks were not subject to analysis. From the Little Caesers website:

Nutritional and ingredient information is based on Little Caesars standard U.S. product formulation. While the ingredient information is based on standard product formulations, variations may occur depending on the particular supplier, product assembly per restaurant, regional, and other factors. Further, product formulations may change periodically. Calculations were performed on Genesis® R&D SQL Software, by ESHA Research, PO Box 13028, Salem, OR 97309 USA.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comments are welcome.