8 dishes to avoid at the Texas Roadhouse

Texas Roadhouse is a chain that has found fans across the country thanks to its Texas-sized portions, large selection of steaks, and affordable prices. But while the restaurant always promises to deliver a good time, many of the chain’s appetizers, entrees, sides, and even salads are loaded with fat, carbs, and sodium. And, while the chain’s steaks are generally good value, some of the little extras aren’t worth the calories or price.

With 580 locations in 49 states, Texas Roadhouse offers a fun, family-oriented atmosphere. If you know how to dodge crowds, this steakhouse chain is a solid option that owes its low prices to a consistent menu and shorter hours than many other chains. Just make sure you educate yourself on some of the chain’s secrets to keeping your checking averages high and know how to defend yourself against servers that are trained to sell aggressively at the expense of your health.

Here are some items to avoid and some other things to try instead.

RELATED: 5 Reasons Texas Roadhouse’s ‘Legendary’ Steaks Are So Cheap.


Cactus flower

texas roadhouse

texas roadhouse

2,250 calories, 135 g fat (26 g saturated fat), 5,000 mg sodium, 236 g carbohydrates (19 g fiber, 36 g sugar), 25 g protein

If you want to indulge in a huge fat bomb before your real meal hits the table, Texas Roadhouse’s Cactus Blossom has your name on it. The entree is loaded with a ridiculous amount of salt and carbs, not to mention a calorie count that easily exceeds the recommended daily amount. Even if you’re sharing it with a few other people, the calorie cost is too high if you’re also going to get a full entree.

Eat this, not that

Eat this, not that

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Bone-in ribeye

Texas roadhouse bone in ribeye

Texas roadhouse bone in ribeye

1,480 calories, 101 g fat (44 g saturated fat), 1,720 mg sodium, 20 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 143 g protein

Texas Roadhouse prides itself on its lineup of red meats. Of all the options, however, the Bone-In Ribeye not only ranks as the least healthy cut of beef, it’s also one of the most calorie-dense options on the entire menu.

Each steak contains more than a day’s worth of fat and about 75 percent of a day’s worth of calories and salt. Rib eye steak is a very fatty piece of meat, for starters, and according to dietitians, it’s even the most unhealthy steak to order.


Ribs falling off the bone – Full slab

full texas roadhouse stack ribs

full texas roadhouse stack ribs

1,450 calories, 102 g fat (41 g saturated fat), 2,260 mg sodium, 15 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 10 g sugar), 116 g protein

When you really want to make the most of the Texas Roadhouse, few entrees can compare to the entire rack of ribs. While the big meal can easily shock and amaze any hungry customer who orders it, don’t expect to dodge the calories that come with it.

Anyone who finishes an entire rack of these ribs in one sitting can expect to eat a day’s worth of salt, more than a day’s recommended amount of fat, and about 75 percent of your daily calories.


Country Fried Sirloin

texas country roadhouse fried sirloin

texas country roadhouse fried sirloin

1,170 calories, 75 g fat (22 g saturated fat), 2,220 mg sodium, 72 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 9 g sugar), 52 g protein

Texas Roadhouse’s version of Country Fried Sirloin may not contain as many calories as some of the chain’s other entrees, but the crispy, deep-fried dish has a lot of fat and a ridiculous amount of sodium.

This fried piece of steak already comes with a day’s worth of fat and salt in each serving, but many diners may feel the need to go the extra mile and bathe the proteins in country gravy.


Fried catfish, 4 pieces

Fried catfish

Fried catfish

1,170 calories, 93 g fat (15 g saturated fat), 1,490 mg sodium, 45 g carbohydrates (1 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 40 g protein

On paper, fish should present a healthier alternative to many types of red meat, but when the chain’s catfish is fried and coated in salt, you end up with one of the least healthy items on the Texas Roadhouse menu. Factor in a whopping 93 grams of fat.

If you’re craving fish, the chain offers a selection of other, healthier seafood options (including a three-piece version of the same catfish meal). Even better, you can make a Southern-style cornmeal catfish with tomato sauce at home.

RELATED: The best and worst menu items at the Texas Roadhouse


Steakhouse Tenderloin Salad



1,340 calories, 103 g fat (25 g saturated fat), 2,870 mg sodium, 42 g carbohydrate, 8 g fiber, 21 g sugar), 71 g protein

Texas Roadhouse pulls no punches when it comes to loading its meals with steaks, including its salads. Anyone opting for Steakhouse Tenderloin Salad in hopes of ordering a healthy meal may not realize that it contains more fat, calories, carbohydrates and salt than many steaks on the chain menu.

Instead, opt for the chicken salad or grilled salmon salad for a healthier entree if you want to eat smart at Texas Roadhouse.


Baked Sweet Potato

texas roadhouse loaded sweet potatoes

texas roadhouse loaded sweet potatoes

830 calories, 38 g fat (12 g saturated fat), 500 mg sodium, 120 g carbohydrate, 10 g fiber, 270 g sugar), 6 g protein

Sure, choosing a baked sweet potato seems like a healthier choice, but there are some additions that can make that choice nutritionally disastrous. A plain baked sweet potato from Texas Roadhouse has about 350 calories and a moderate nine grams of fat, but the servers will try to sell you the Cadillac version. If you add the eye-catching toasted marshmallows, honey cinnamon butter, and honey cinnamon caramel sauce, you’ve got more than one dessert on your plate. While you’ll get a respectable 10 grams of fiber, you’ll also get 70 grams of pure sugar.


Pulled Pork Bun

Pulled Pork Bun

Pulled Pork Bun

870 calories, 40 g fat (13 g saturated fat), 1,200 mg sodium, 62 g carbohydrate, (4 g fiber, 22 g sugar), 68 g protein

If you’re looking for a calorie and sodium bomb, this Pulled Pork Sandwich is all yours, but your body won’t be happy with you in the long run. In the FDA’s dietary guidelines for Americans, adults are recommended to limit their sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams per day. The ramifications of consistently consuming high amounts of sodium can lead to high blood pressure, which can put you at risk for both heart disease and stroke, according to the CDC. The barbecue may be nice, but the sugary sauce, plus any other unhealthy, calorie-rich side options you may choose to accompany

An earlier version of this article was originally published on July 20, 2022. It has been updated to include new information.

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