Calories on the Menu - Know Your Options When Eating Out

Nutrition Education

Eating Healthy While Eating Out Just Got Easier

To help consumers know the calories in foods when eating out, FDA implemented regulations in 2018 requiring that calorie information be provided on many restaurant menus and menu boards. Calorie labeling is required for restaurants and similar retail food establishments that are part of a chain of 20 or more locations. 

Restaurants that are required to provide calorie information on menus and menu boards are also required to provide written nutrition information on menu items, including total fat, saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, sodium, total carbohydrates, dietary fiber, sugars, and protein.

Visit FDA’s web page for consumers (also available in Spanish) to learn more about ways to make healthier choices when eating out and the types of chains where consumers will see the calories information as well as other nutrition information covered establishments are also required to provide.

WIC staff can help participants learn how to use the nutrition information on menus (see the presentation slides button to the right) in conjunction with the Nutrition Facts label on packaged foods to help participants make informed nutrition choices and maintain healthy eating patterns.

Man looking at menu board with calories
Developed by: HHS, Food and Drug Administration