The lowest calorie menu item at Chick-fil-A isn't a salad

Oh Chick-fil-A, how we love your delicious chicken sandwich! Its pillowy bun, its slight crunch, and its chickeny goodness, all perfectly offset by a few slices of pickle... There's only one thing we don't love, and that's the calorie count. Each sandwich has 440 calories, whew! Or 460 for a spicy one, which is kind of weird since aren't hot peppers supposed to burn calories, not add them? 

That chicken sandwich is a favorite cheat day meal, for sure, but what can we do on days when we feel we really ought to be exercising a little restraint instead? Skip the trip to Chick-fil-A altogether? Sacrilege! Well, there's always the lower-calorie Chick-fil-A menu items that will allow you to dine at this restaurant and still have a relatively diet-friendly day.

While you might think that your best bet for a low-calorie Chick-fil-A meal would be a salad, you'd be thinking wrong. Among the entree salads, the Market Salad is a relatively low 250 calories. If you sprinkle in the included granola (70 calories) and almonds (60 calories) and drizzle on the apple cider vinaigrette dressing (230 calories), though, your meal now totals 610 calories, which is even more than the 550 calorie Spicy Deluxe.

So what is the lowest-calorie Chick-fil-A entree?

There is one menu item listed as an entree that comes in at just 130 calories, and that is the grilled nuggets. You get eight of these bite-sized morsels, tasty enough you can even eat them naked. The nuggets, not you, since clothing-optional Chick-fil-As are still not a thing, not even in its drive-thrus. If you want to add a sauce, your naked nuggets will be skinny dipping in the 25 calorie buffalo sauce, although the barbeque, honey mustard, and Sriracha sauces only come in at 45 calories apiece. (Best to avoid the Chick-fil-A sauce at 140 calories or the Polynesian sauce at 110.)

If eight nuggets alone aren't enough to fill you up, you can pair them with a fruit cup at just 60 calories, and even a side salad will only add 160 calories plus another 25 if you ask for the light Italian dressing. Or you could go double-chickeny with a bowl of chicken noodle soup at 120 calories. Wash it all down with an unsweetened iced tea (Yankee style, y'all!), and you'll have saved enough calories so you can come back tomorrow and splurge on some of those wonderful waffle fries. Self-control only goes so far when it comes to Chick-fil-A, after all.