Monday, September 14, 2009

Burgers, French Fries & A Salad

The other day a friend of mine asked me and the toddler to join her and her toddler for an early lunch at The Counter. I usually don't like to go to a restaurant that pretty much only serves burgers, as I'm not a big burger eater and I like to have some healthier options. (I should note that there is a veggie burger on the menu, so that is probably a healthier option, and you can also get your burger without a bun in a bowl.)

Before going, I looked at their menu online and decided pretty much what the toddler and I would get. Since I knew that my friend's toddler would get his own meal, I knew that meant I had to order my toddler his own meal as well. I wanted the toddler to get something he would like, but I also didn't want to waste a lot of food.

The toddler got the mini burgers with french fries from the kids' menu. Tons of french fries, no?!!

He ended up eating quite a few french fries and a few bites of one of the burgers. I ate the other burger. I also had some fries.

I got the side salad with sun dried tomato vinaigrette on the side. The salad was basic but good. The toddler ate one of the tomato slices.

Both the toddler and I drank water. Our total bill came to less than $10 before tax and tip. While our meal wasn't the healthiest, I think it was okay. I think it's important to show kids that it's okay to eat at a burger place once in a while, but that you don't have to go overboard.

When we told hubby and the teenager that we had gone to The Counter without them, they weren't very happy. They both pointed out that I always say no to burger places... So I see a family outing to The Counter in our future... Not sure how healthy hubby and the teenager will keep it...

Questions: What are your strategies at burger places? Do you get it "all?" Do you split an order? When we were there, we actually saw a group of four girls split an order of sweet potato fries and two hamburgers. The cook had cut the burgers in half and served them on separate plates. I thought splitting fries and a burger was an excellent strategy to keep it healthier. Plus it saves money!

Be well,
Andrea

30 comments:

  1. it all depends. :) sometimes, I want my own burger + fries, and sometimes, I just can't handle all that grease so we'll share. sounds like sharing worked out pretty well!

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  2. My husband could eat burgers and fries 365 days!

    Angie's Recipes

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  3. It is very important to show your kids that it's ok once in awhile as long as you don't go overboard.

    My hubby and I always split something when we go out to eat. UNLESS it's a special occasion, and then our rule is to go all out, and it's worked for us. (At least so far)

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  4. I haven't had a burger for years. If I could pick the place to eat, I'd never pick a burger place to start with. But if I don't have a choice, I'd do what you did, pick a side salad to complement it! :)

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  5. i love "the counter" - i usually just get a veggie or turkey burger there, with a few veggie toppings.

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  6. we have one of those here but i have never been. when i go to a burger joint i usually just order whatever i want because i usually only go to them 3 or 4 times a year! i don't eat fries though, whenever i do they TASTE great but make me feel like garbage. those mini burgers are pretty cute though, i will have to admit.

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  7. My best friend from back in Vegas and I used to go out to eat all the time (we are both RD's) and we always split a meal and had a salad. Sometimes we even had some left over to bring to split for the lunch the next day at work. If you go and don't have someone to share with, cut it in half and then take it home for later. Another option, like you did, look at the menu ahead of time and plan the rest of your meals around the potentially unhealthier item you have for lunch. Just some ideas.

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  8. My strategy for burger places is "don't eat there". I know, not very helpful but I love fried foods too much and have serious portion control issues.

    BTW: you inspired me to make pancakes for breakfast this morning. My recipe is pretty close to yours but omit sugar/honey etc. and add mashed banana and a few chocolate chips. My daughter thanks you! :)

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  9. Mini burger are nice! Sometimes I eat burger...

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  10. I don't go to burger places too often, but if I do, I'd probably order a salad because I'm not a huge fan of beef burgers (or opt for a salmon/veggie burger). I've been to barbecues where there were no other options and I usually end up splitting one :)

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  11. We don't go to burger places because we don't eat beef. But whenever I go to a restaurant I'm always on the lookout for the healthiest choices.

    You did great! I hope you enjoy the meal out with your teenager and husband. It sounds like you will be going again very soon!

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  12. First of all, great idea checking out the menu before hand, always a good thing :) I usually get a full burger, and eat as much as I can. When I start getting full, I stop OR just eat the meat without the bun (depending on where I am, if the meat is really good). I am usually with Nick and he would never split a burger! As for fries, I always pass and get fruit or a salad instead. This helps me be able to eat the entire burger!

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  13. we go burgers more often than I would like but the Men need their burgers.

    I just look at it as treat time...I have a nice big green smoothie or other snack before, and I either share some fries, or get my own onion rings (ohhh I love those) it's usually fine.

    if we are on the road and a drive thru is needed than I just pick...I never order the meal anymore...I might get a salad or a sandwich but I leave out the fries and coke.

    I used to just get my own meal...but not anymore.

    and if I can I get pepper poppers because I love those. :)

    JJ gets some fries...like after his shot at the dr's office!

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  14. Splitting is a great idea! I actually don't love burgers too much anyways so I usually end up getting a salad or some fun appetizer as my meal.

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  15. We haven't been to burger joint yet, but I did pick up fast food at wendy's with the hubby when we were in a hurry to get somewhere. It was my son's first chick nuggets and it all came up, so we aren't trying diner or fast food again for a while. We do go to a bbq place, once in while, but they have lots of veggie sides and an enormous salad bar. So my husband and each get a dinner and salad, and usually 2 sides and an extra plate for our son. We just keep giving him whatever he'll eat.

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  16. Sometimes I split a meal with someone, but more often I just order what I want - I don't eat out that often, so when I do, I see it as a treat!

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  17. I love to split- Anthony isn't too big on splitting though....I'll usually just order something small and plan on having leftovers for the next day.

    Have a great week, Andrea!

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  18. I totally think you should get a burger, and eat slowly until satisfied, with fries for sharing and a salad. And eat an apple one hour beforehand. I know a family that has an annual ice cream for dinner night, and it is completely the annual bash.
    Hey, I need recipes for amazing race bars! Help!

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  19. I honestly couldn't tell you the last time I went to a burger place! (i'm not a big burger fan) BUT I like the idea of cutting them in half and i'd DEFINITELY order my own fries. :) Those mini burgers look good though.... haha

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  20. Your title instantly reminded me of a college turm paper i wrote on "French Fries and Intellegence" It was a comentary on one of my worst dates ever =)

    Sundried dressing sounds so good right now. I always say no to burgger joints. Hubbys favorite joint it Fuddruckers. Figures.

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  21. LOL! Not sure how I got an A in that college class after looking at that last post =)

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  22. We never go to burger joints or fast food places unless we're traveling then suddenly everyone gets a craving for burger and fries, even if I don't want it. And guess what, they're not sharing. I encourage everyone to get something small and order small fries and very important, order without mayo because they put way too much on. This usually works and I usually get the grilled chicken. The fact that it's an infrequent visit makes it OK to eat what you want but still exercise a little caution.

    Oh Krystal..LOL that was good, you got an A? haha!

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  23. I definitely don't deprive my girls these sorts of things either, but I do what you do and try to find ways to make the portions smaller (YIKES why are kids size portions so big?? That makes me SAD.) and ways to make it healthier. No soda, split a larger portion. And I don't make them clean their plates either - when they say they are done they are done!

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  24. We honestly don't get to go out much and when we do it's usually somewhere for breakfast, YUMM! I do agree with you on letting the kiddo's enjoy burgers and not completely depriving them. It is crazy how ginourmous servings have to be. It is most definitely wasteful. I do often end up sharing my meal with one of the kids, cost saver to, lol! Great post :)

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  25. Looks delicious- mini burgers are so cute! I went to a 'gourmet' burger place recently with another burger and although most people probably object to paying for things seperately, I liked that fries didn't automatically come with the burger. I'm not really a fry person- I like a few (sharing an order with a group works well for me) but not a whole order. I don't eat red meat so my usually order a grilled chicken sandwich or veggie burger...depending on size, I eat half the bun and put the rest of the 'burger' on the salad I always get :)

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  26. Awwwwwww....those mini burgers are so dang cute! :)

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  27. Mini burgers are just cute! And those are the perfect thing to split because they're already portioned out!

    I love splitting meals with my husband when we go out, the portion sizes these days are so huge, it just makes sense!

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  28. I still need my burger fix. Unfortunately, I still order a burger and essentially eat it all. But when I most recently ate a burger, I definitely realized that I could simply eat half the burger the next time I get one. As I continue to eat healthier, which I've only started doing recently, I'm noticing that I can (and should!) eat less when eating out, especially foods like burgers.

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  29. I usually like to split a burger and get a side salad instead of fries. The mini burgers look great! :)

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  30. Hmmmm, a new place to try that I've never heard of :-)

    I say split (for me personally)! You can try a little of whatever you want and not go overboard. But, if burgers/fries are your "thing" and the person chooses to splurge on the meal, I'd say go for it! I'd rather have my calories in frozen yogurt or a good pizza personally.

    I went out to pizza w/ some girlfriends last night and we all ordered small green salads and split two small pizzas (didn't finish either). It was nice to have some variety w/out over-indulging.

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