1. Smoothie King The Hulk Strawberry
Nutrition Facts: A large (40 oz) contains 1,928 calories, 64 g fat (26 g saturated fat), 250 g sugar and 50 g protein.
Consider yourself warned: This gargantuan smoothie packs as many calories, fat and sugar as most adults require in an entire day. (It probably doesn’t help that the second ingredient listed in this “Fitness” smoothie is butter pecan ice cream.) And while the shake’s “Weight Gain Blend” might be a good idea for some customers — namely those looking to put on pounds — most people should do without. Don’t be fooled by the “make it skinny” option on this menu, either: It only cuts 200 calories and 44 (of 250!) grams of sugar, while the fat content remains the same.
Make It Healthier: Take a load off with this skinnier Strawberry Protein Shake made with almond milk, frozen strawberries, Greek yogurt and protein powder for an extra boost of energy. The finished product: a more reasonable 308 calories, 33 grams of sugar and a whopping 37 grams of protein.
2. Dunkin’ Donuts Frozen Mocha Coffee Coolatta
Nutrition Facts: A large (32 oz) contains 990 calories, 47 g fat (29 g saturated fat), 125 g sugar and 8 g protein.
Say it with us, folks: A coffee drink should never contain upwards of 900 calories! The killer in this drink is the added sugar, and the fact that it contains about as much fat as the average adult should consume in an entire day. The modest eight grams of protein is respectable, but you can do better — without all the extra artificial stabilizers and preservatives.
Make It Healthier: A small version of this Dunkin’ Donuts treat made with skim milk instead of cream isn’t the worst indulgence, coming in at 300 calories, 0 grams of fat and 68 grams of sugar. But this homemade Mocha Protein Shake is a much more nutritious choice thanks to the addition of a dairy-free protein powder, clocking in at 254 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 17 grams of sugar and 28 grams of protein.
3. Jamba Juice Peanut Butter Moo’d Shake
Nutrition Facts: A large (28 oz) contains 980 calories, 29 g fat (6 g saturated fat), 131 g sugar and 26 g protein.
Peanut butter is basically a health food, right? Not quite. While a small half-cup serving of this PB, chocolate and banana shake might be an acceptable dessert, it doesn’t qualify as a healthy breakfast or snack in any size. (Even the smallest option has 72 grams of sugar and almost 500 calories!) The use of nonfat frozen yogurt might help keep the fat content a bit lower, but that can often mean additional sugar is needed to enhance flavor — not always a fair trade.
Make It Healthier: Add some protein powder, cut out the fro-yo, and we’re on our way to a much healthier alternative with this Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shake. For 20 ounces, you’re looking at 485 calories, 2.5 grams of fat, 33 grams of sugar (nearly 100 grams less than the Jamba Juice shake!) and 32 grams of protein. While the calorie count may still be a bit high, consider this vegan and gluten-free alternative a nutritious breakfast replacement that will power you though the morning.
4. Sonic Grape Slushie with NERDS Candy
Nutrition Facts: A “Route 44” size (44 oz) contains 970 calories, 0 g fat, 247 g sugar and 0 g protein.
The only beverage anyone should be enjoying in a 44-ounce cup is water — certainly not a bright purple drink that should probably be called “liquid sugar.” This gigantic slushie contains enough sugar to satisfy most adults’ recommended daily intake. And considering the World Health Organization suggests we cut sugar intake to less than five percent of total daily calories (11 percentage points less than Americans consume on average), maybe it’s best we avoid what Sonic calls “the added awesomeness of NERDS Candy.”
Make It Healthier: Forego the artificial coloring and added sugar in favor of this Easy Grape Slushie made from actual grapes. (Shocking — we know!) Sixteen ounces only sets you back about 123 calories and 29.9 grams of sugar that come solely from the fruit — this all-natural makeover has no added sugar.