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RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
1/17/14 2:20 P

I use b/s chicken thighs which are 170 calories per 4 ozs, and a Tbsp of olive oil is just 120 calories per Tbsp. Today I am eating 1.35 lbs ( 6 thighs. 918 calories), so they are 3.6 ozs each, or 153 calories each.

Cooked in 4 Tbsp. olive oil, that adds 480 calories. So 918 + 480 = 1398, and / 6 thighs is now 233 calories, if every drop of oil is on/in the chicken. That's 153 calories for the chicken, 80 in oil. This is one of the ways I think I lose weight, even when I track 2,200 calories. Some of the oil is still in the frying pan. We can't subtract it. How would we measure it?

Just know that if you fry chicken, it isn't double the calories. The batter was where all the calories were. They batter the chicken, because it floats when done cooking. That way, they don't have to pay attention to it. The do other work, and check it every 30 seconds. If it's floating. it's done! Instead of paying a cook, they hire a 16 year old kid to do deep fryer, and sandwiches, and pay them minimum wage. I know this, because I was that

Since I am not sure of the accuracy, even counting it at home, estimating how much oil was absorbed by the chicken in a restaurant is impossible. Maybe find one that doesn't batter their chicken, meaning they actually have a trained cook, cooking it on a stove, instead of the deep fryer, and they might have semi-accurate nutrition for that meal, but otherwise, I treat it the same as if I cooked it at home. Two Tbsp. olive oil, per 3 pcs. chicken. The chicken can only absorb a finite amount of oil, whether you cook it in a cup of oil, or a gallon. I try to never eat at a restaurant though, so I know what actually is in my meals. That same minimum wage kid, doesn't care how many calories are listed on the menu, when he is 23, and working down the street at Applebee's.. 550 calorie menu? maybe.

I do find it interesting that batter has way more calories than olive oil, which is pure fat. Of course, the olive oil isn't 1/4" thick.

EXOTEC Posts: 3,327
1/17/14 1:41 P

Where did you obtain your nutrition values? If you're talking about fast food, or restaurant food, you should use the data they provide. I also use a good database at

That's the page for chicken, and I believe the values are derived from the USDA database, as are many here on SP. If you "back up" from that linked page, you will get their entire database, including fast food outlets, chain restaurants, and even those who refused to provide their info.
It's been a great resource for me.

I can't speculate on why there might be such a large difference in the values you found. Perhaps it's the portion size; what do they mean, in actual weight, when they say a whole breast, or half a breast? I've seen some chicken parts which are in what *I* consider the "normal" range... and then I've seen those gigantic "dinosaur" portions, too! That may well answer your question right there.

So far as frying... I wish I could remember the source... but what I read was that the oil involved in frying constitutes only about 10% (?) of the nutritional content. Hardly worth calculating, in other words.

Edited by: EXOTEC at: 1/17/2014 (13:43)
ERINTFG SparkPoints: (45,448)
Fitness Minutes: (23,467)
Posts: 563
1/16/14 9:22 P

Thank you; I'll go look it up. I wondered if it meant something like that. I mean, it makes sense that it would have more than roasted or baked chicken, but that is a HUGE difference.

ANARIE Posts: 13,200
1/16/14 9:20 P

"Without skin, fried," means they take the skin off before frying it. It still has batter or a crust on it. Lots of restaurants (and home cooks) fry skinless breasts because unless the chicken was very young, the skin will have thick spots that can be kind of gross.

If you Google, you should be able to find some sort of information about how calories change if you peel the breading off of fried chicken. It's probably less of a calorie saving than you would think, but it does trim off some.

ERINTFG SparkPoints: (45,448)
Fitness Minutes: (23,467)
Posts: 563
1/16/14 9:14 P

the calorie tracker says that half a chicken breast without skin, roasted, is about 140 calories.

it says that half a chicken breast without skin, fried, is about 340 calories.

Does this mean that if I go out to eat and get a fried chicken breast and take the skin off I am STILL having 200 more calories than I would if the chicken were roasted? I mean, I know some of the oil gets into the chicken meat, but HOW can it be THAT MUCH different?

Does anyone know how this works?

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