Eating out with the girls can be pretty difficult, there are four of us to cater for and two of them fussy eaters (Amelie and Evie). Finding a restaurant for food that caters for everyone in the family is really important and it means everyone can eat together.
A few weeks ago I was invited by Mumsnet to look around one of the new McDonald’s restaurants in Central London and specifically to try their new 400 & 600 calorie meal bundles. I am conscious of calories in our food, both for me and the girls. As both Amelie and Evie are under 5 and expected to eat from children’s menus I love places that offer choices for parents on what they have and clearly show calories. The choice then is mine and an informed choice.
When we arrived at the St Paul’s restaurant we met the McDonald’s team who told us the story behind introducing the meal bundles. The insight was that many Mums take their children to McDonald’s but don’t eat there themselves as they don’t feel there is something they can eat which caters to their nutritional needs.
I was really surprised to learn that 90% of the McDonald’s menu is sub-500 calories, things like Chicken McNuggets, the Chicken Sandwich and the delicious chicken wraps. Nutritional content is labelled on all of the menus via the new order screens so you can make an informed choice for you and your family.
If you need a little help pulling together a meal then McDonald’s have done the hard work for you by introducing the Meals Under range, breakfast and lunch meal bundles that are under 400 or 600 calories. Each meal contains a main, side and drink with favourites such as the Egg & Cheese McMuffin, Chicken McNuggets and the Chicken Legend.
All the products featured in the meal deals also pass the Public Health England green and amber light system – meaning they are within the recommended sugar and salt quantities. They’re also part of the Public Health England campaign – One You – which launched earlier in March, to provide 400-600 calorie options on the go.
We were shown the meal bundles and I made my selection from the ordering screens.
I chose a McChicken Sandwich, salad and a coffee – all under 600 calories. It was delicious. I loved the shaker salad complete with balsamic dressing, a great alternative to chips and the McChicken Sandwich was lovely.
I was really impressed with everything on the day so I decided to put it to the test…
Putting the meals to the test
I decided to try a McDonald’s lunch on a family day out at our local Walton-on-Thames restaurant recently. The girls were so excited to go out to lunch with me and we had great fun ordering on the screens.
With two children under four eating out can be quite stressful, so the fact I could order quickly, choose a meal for myself that I knew was nutritionally balanced and then have the meals delivered to the table was fantastic!
Amelie and Evie both had happy meals with water and I had a Meals Under bundle with a Chicken Legend, salad and bottle of water.
Lunch out was a huge success, both girls ate well, I really enjoyed my lunch and the friends that we went with also enjoyed theirs!
The meal bundles and the openness from McDonald’s around the nutritional content give me a peace of mind that everyone in the family is eating something they’ll like which is nutritionally balanced. It’s great that there is a choice for parents as well as our children. We’ll definitely be eating there for a treat lunch more often.