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McDonald’s Small Latte and Fruit & Maple Oatmeal

Credit: McDonald’s

These two items seem like the healthiest things to order from the McDonald’s menu but, eaten together, their sugar levels are sky high. The small latte has around 11 grams of sugar and the oatmeal a whopping 31 grams. That’s over your daily recommended intake of added sugars consumed just at breakfast.

Denny’s cinnamon roll pancake breakfast

Credit: Denny’s

Featuring a huge side of cream cheese icing in a pitcher, yes, a pitcher. A serving of these gets you 1,000 calories and 127 grams of sugar, 40-50 grams more than the entire daily allowance. The chefs at Denny’s must have had a bet to see who could invent the most sugar filled breakfast, it’s basically a dessert.

Jamba Juice Strawberry Surf Rider

Credit: Jamba Juice/ Make Drinks

This can no longer be considered a ‘juice’, can it? It boasts 590 calories and 128 grams of sugar, just for a drink! That’s over four times the daily recommended sugar intake. With no other nutritional value to this beverage, it’s really a wonder anyone bothers to order it…

IHOP cupcake pancakes

Credit: IHOP via Facebook

Essentially, it’s another dessert for breakfast, maybe the ‘cupcake’ title gave it away. These original buttermilk pancakes are filled and topped with colorful sprinkles. Just four of these pancakes will provide 810 calories and 59 grams of sugar, which is the same as six original glazed Krispy Kreme donuts. Just buy a half dozen box and you’re good to go.

Oatmeal bars from Wendy’s

Credit: Brand Eating

You could just limit yourself to one… but is that really gonna fill you up? One of Wendy’s bars has 280 calories and 23 grams of sugar, so just eating two for breakfast is more than your full day’s worth of added sugar. You may as well just commit to the sweet treat and eat two cookies instead.

Pumpkin muffin from Panera

Credit: Charlie Miller via Penn Live

It does contain real pumpkin, but that doesn’t mean it’s one of your five recommended portions of fruit and veggies a day. Topped with powdered sugar and streusel, this autumnal treat has around 40 grams of sugar. That makes up about 80% of your total sugar intake for the day, just in your first meal!

Perkins strawberry croissant french toast

Credit: Perkins via Trip Advisor

Sugar overload for your morning meal. Sitting at 67 grams of sugar per serving, you’ll get a rush and a crash probably before you’ve left the restaurant. The glazed strawberries don’t really do much for this dish’s nutritional value. Just pick either a croissant or french toast… why both?

Denny’s Fit Fare banana pancake breakfast

Credit: Denny’s / Mom and More

Don’t fall for the word ‘fit’. Yes, fruit is obviously good for us but, lets be honest with ourselves here, that’s not the main star of this breakfast. At around 750 calories and 49 grams of sugar, this breakfast can’t be considered the healthy choice. That amount of sugar is even more than certain bottles of sweet iced tea!

Au Bon Pain strawberry and banana smoothie

Credit: Au Bon Pain

Calling this a smoothie makes it seem like a light breakfast. This single smoothie has around 310 calories and 57 grams of sugar, way more than the daily added sugar limit. There’s also only nine grams of protein, meaning it won’t keep you full for very long, with little nutritional benefit for the sheer amount of sugar.

Fruity Pebbles

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One third of this cereal is sugar. With only a measly serving size of 36 grams, it has over 12 grams of sugar in. With very little fiber too, that tiny bowlful won’t keep you full for very long, meaning that you’ll just be reaching for more sugary foods later on.

IHOP milk ‘n’ cookies pancakes

Credit: IHOP

Oreos are always at the scene of a sugar crime. Basically making up 100% of your daily allowance of saturated fat, these pancakes don’t skimp on sugar either. Having 76 grams of sugar, these pancakes are a dietitian’s worst nightmare. Maybe just order regular pancakes next time?

Jamba Juice Island Pitaya bowl

Credit: Jamba via Facebook

Energy bowls seem like the perfect thing for breakfast but ‘energy’, really, is just sugar or calories. This sweet bowl comes out at 70 grams of sugar, that’s almost your entire daily allowance, including natural sugars. Most of the sugar comes from the honey and granolas on top.

Dunkin’ blueberry muffins

Credit: Dunkin’

You’d think a food with blueberries in would be nutritious but nope! One single muffin has 44 grams of sugar, more than a can of coke. That’s more than your daily added sugar allowance, just in a small breakfast. That one gram of fiber won’t keep you feeling nourished either.

Honey smacks

Credit: David Pimborough via Mashed

Rightfully, this cereal was originally called sugar smacks. It’s made up of 50% sugar, meaning that small serving size of 36 grams gives you 18 grams of sugar. That’s more than a whole Twinkie! With very little other nutritional value, you may as well eat a bowl of candy for breakfast instead.

Denny’s peanut butter cup pancake breakfast

Credit: Carlos Garcia via Foodbeast

We all know peanut butter isn’t that good for you, but this is outrageous. Served with hash browns and eggs this mighty breakfast tops 1,580 calories and over 73 grams of sugar. That’s very nearly a small person’s entire food intake for calories, sugar, and probably fat, all in a single meal.

Au Bon Pain’s blueberry yogurt parfait

Credit: Forager Project

Another ‘healthy’ blueberry treat? At a giant 45 grams of sugar, you may as well not snack on anything for the whole day after ordering this. Whilst wild blueberries are super good for us, they get cancelled out by the sweet or artificially flavored yogurt and extra sugary granola on top.

Cheesecake Factory bruléed french toast

Credit: Cheesecake Factory

Probably considered one of America’s unhealthiest breakfasts. Standing at 2,780 calories, more than a lot of people need in a single day. The sugar is no better, at 120 grams. That’s way over a full day’s intake and over four times the added sugar limit. Avoid this meal at all costs if you know what’s good for you!

Cranberry orange muffin from Panera

Credit: Dinner, then Dessert

Seemingly healthy with two kinds of fruits added. A single muffin contains 42 grams of sugar, the same as around three to four fun sized Snickers. With barely any protein per portion, this sugary treat won’t keep you full for long. Plus, all that sugar will do little more than make you crash and crave more sweets.

IHOP Cinnamon bun pancakes

Credit: IHOP

Ordering this breakfast means you’re intaking 1,205 calories and over 140 grams of sugar. That’s more sugar than if you ate two and a half Cinnabon classic cinnamon rolls. With zero grams of fiber, all you’ll do is give yourself a tummy ache, not even feeling full after just a couple of hours.

Smoothie King The Hulk strawberry smoothie

Credit: Smoothie King

So, this specific drink is said to be designed for weight gain which is obviously okay for the people who need it. However, no one needs this much sugar. Sitting at 250 grams of sugar, that’s almost three whole days of sugar in a single beverage. No matter your health goals, this is surely one to avoid.

Au Bon Pain’s granola and fruit cup

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Granola and fruit is a perfect combo, right? When these items are paired together at Au Bon Pain, they come to a total of 35 grams of sugar, which is more than the daily recommended intake for women and just one gram off the limit for men. Fruit and granola also have little to no protein, meaning this ‘light’ breakfast will leave you feeling hungry after.

Clif chocolate chip bar


If you’re eating this for breakfast before work, maybe try a different energy bar. With over 21 grams of sugar per bar, that’s almost your daily recommended serving of added sugars. The sugar may give you energy but it will also cause you to crash at some point, potentially craving even more sweet treats.

Perkins lemon blueberry pie pancake platter

Credit: Perkins via Trip Advisor

This all-day-breakfast place sure knows how to add sugar. Topping 1,000 calories and 79 grams of sugar, this meal is worse than 123 M&Ms. The whole meal only contains a single gram of fiber, which somehow seems harder to accomplish than adding that much sugar. This mystery is one best to be avoided…

Dunkin’ banana chocolate chip muffin

Credit: Dunkin’ via X

Fast food places need to stop pretending their fruit addition makes any of their food even remotely healthy. This sweet breakfast snack has a whopping 510 calories and 46 grams of sugar. That’s way more than the daily recommended limit of added sugar, all consumed in a few bites in the morning.

Quaker Oats and honey natural granola

Credit: Donelan’s Supermarket

Granola serving sizes are never considered big enough to fill you up. Just one serving of this granola is 26 grams of sugar, that’s more than five delicious Oreos! Coming at 420 calories as well, it just seems like empty calories that will do nothing but give you a sugar rush, masked under sneaky, ‘healthy’ marketing techniques.

Cheesecake Factory french toast Napoleon with syrup

Credit: A Worldly Kitchen

If you’re gonna order this, bring three friends along to help you eat it. Sitting at 2,880 calories and 95 grams of saturated fat, this isn’t for the weak of heart. If the calories didn’t put you off, maybe the 139 grams of sugar will. They somehow managed to add your whole day’s sodium limit too… despite it essentially being a dessert.

Pop-Tarts strawberry unfrosted

Credit: Smart Label / Kelloggs

Yes, even the unfrosted ones are laced with sugar! One pastry has 13 grams of sugar, and, just like the original version, nobody really eats one at a time, do they? That’s like eating one and a half original glazed Krispy Kreme’s for breakfast! Instead, just stick to real, fresh strawberries for breakfast, paired with some low fat Greek yogurt.

Froot Loops

Credit: Wikipedia

Who would have thought the brightly colored cereal has sugar in? A single serving of this cereal, if you’re actually one of the few people weighing it out, has 12 grams of sugar. Whilst that may not seem a lot, the serving size is only 39 grams, which doesn’t even fill a standard bowl, so you’re very likely to eat maybe double or more that serving.

Denny’s salted caramel and banana cream pancakes

Credit: Denny’s via Facebook

With shortbread pieces in and on top of the pancakes, in addition to the vanilla cream and caramel sauce, it’s really no wonder that this ‘breakfast’ has a ton of sugar in it. At 930 calories and 79 grams of sugar, that’s the same amount as chugging two cans of Coca Cola in the morning.

Starbucks chilled almond frappuccino

Credit: Starbucks

You may grab one of these to have it as a breakfast time coffee hit on the go, but just one of these small bottles has over 26 grams of sugar, which will only give you the jitters along with that much needed caffeine rush. Stick to a standard Americano, with low sugar sweetener if you don’t like it bitter!

Chips Ahoy cereal

Credit: Patricia Baes

You’re basically having milk and cookies for breakfast… what did you think was going to be in it? This cereal actually has more concentrated sugar than the actual chocolate chip cookies. At 14 grams of sugar per 38 gram serving, this cereal will certainly give you a sugar spike early in the morning. With barely any fiber or protein, you might even reach for another bowl only an hour later.

Gatorade whey protein bar

Credit: Amazon

Whilst you may get in a quick boost of protein for your workout, this bar has huge amounts of unnecessary sugar. One bar has over 28 grams of added sugar – crazy amounts when you consider what a tiny amount of food you’re eating! Unless you’re a professional athlete who needs this kind of energy, skip this 350 calorie snack…

Coffee-mate coffee creamers

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It’s no surprise that this stuff is basically banned in most European countries. French vanilla creamer is more than half just sugar and a serving, which is basically a splash, means you’re adding seven grams of sugar to your coffee. Now, imagine how many coffees most people drink in a single day…

Perkins berry blueberry pancakes with syrup

Credit: Tara Teaspoon

How did Perkins manage to cram two day’s worth of sugar into just one breakfast meal? This sugary stack of food has over 1000 calories and 105 grams of sugar. Say goodbye to your teeth after finishing this meal. That’s the same amount of sugar as four Dairy Queen vanilla cones, all before midday!

KIND almond and apricot yogurt bar

Credit: KIND Snacks

Maybe reach for something else on your break at work. Almonds have healthy fats which are, in fact, good for us but the added sugar in these bars takes over any of the benefits. At 16 grams of sugar per bar, it’s a lot for just a quick snack between meals. They only have three grams of protein too, which won’t keep you full for long.

Yoplait peaches ‘n’ cream yogurt

Credit: Ron’s Supermarket

Natural yogurts have great benefits for our gut but flavored yogurts, like the ones pictured here, hide behind large amounts of added sugar. One container of this yogurt has a whole 28 grams of sugar in it. Add some granola, honey or dried fruit to that in your morning yogurt bowl and you’ve got an early morning sugar overload.

Nature Valley protein cranberry almond granola

Credit: Amazon

A lot of granola brands just add so many unnecessary sugars. A serving of this granola has ten grams of protein, which is great, but for 210 calories and 14 grams of sugar, you’re better off finding a low sugar protein bar. Or you could make your own at home and control how much of that pesky sugar is added in to the mix.

Gold Peak salted caramel cold brew

Credit: Eat This, Not That! / Yahoo

In a rush and need some caffeine with your breakfast? This one bottle alone has 53 grams of sugar, which is almost double your added sugar daily recommendation, so maybe reconsider. You could drink this, or eat an entire pint of Breyer’s vanilla ice cream for the same sugar rush.

Quaker apple walnut flavor oatmeal

Credit: Quaker Oats

Whilst oatmeal is a generally satiating breakfast, there are so many ways to eat it without the additional sugar. This one pot serving has over 22 grams of sugar for only six grams of protein. Skip the sugary add ins and make it at home for a cheaper fix, too.

Raisin Bran cereal

Credit: Healthline

Bran? Raisins? All sounds healthy, right? Per serving, this popular cereal has around 17 grams of sugar, which doesn’t really scream healthy start to the morning. All that sugar can’t be coming from the raisins, but instead the sugary coated bran flakes. Stick to a low sugar bran cereal and add your own toppings.