Pizza delivery restaurants are delicious and convenient, but they're also associated with high-calorie meals. Thankfully, you can benefit from the convenience of having pizza delivered to your home or ordering freshly-cooked pizza to pick up without ruining your diet. You'll just need to order healthy options. Here's how to order from a takeout pizza delivery restaurant without going over your calorie limit.
Add a Salad as a Starter
Most pizza takeout restaurants offer salads on the menu – starting your dinner with a fiber-packed salad will help you eat less pizza. The best choice is a traditional garden salad with a low-fat Italian dressing. Caesar salads are another common choice, although the dressing can be high in calories. To reduce your calorie intake, ask for dressing on the side or swap it for a low-fat option if it's possible.
Ordering Smaller Pizzas Helps Control Portion Size
It's tempting to order an extra large pizza when you're ordering takeout. It can give you leftovers for days and some people enjoy pizza when it's cold better than when it's warm! Unfortunately, it can make it more difficult to control your portion sizes. Not only are the slices larger, leading to more calories per slice, but it's easier to overeat when there's a lot of food in front of you. If you're trying to watch your calories, stick with a medium pizza to make portioning easier.
Opt For a Thinner Crust and Less Cheese
For most people, the melted mozzarella cheese is their favorite part of the pizza. However, it adds a lot of excess calories, sodium and saturated fat per slice. Asking for a lighter portion of cheese will reduce the amount of fat and calories per slice of pizza, and many people don't even notice the difference.
Selecting a thin and crispy crust for your pizza rather than a hand-tossed or Sicilian crust also cuts out a significant amount of calories per slice. Pizza takeout restaurants use less dough to make their thin crust pizzas, helping to reduce overall calories and carbohydrates.
Choose Veggies Such as Spinach and Mushrooms to Add Micronutrients
Traditional pizza toppings like pepperoni and sausage are high in saturated fat and calories, so it's best to avoid them when you're on a diet. Spinach and mushrooms add nearly no calories at all to the pizza, but they do add vitamins and minerals. Other good choices are diced tomatoes and green peppers. Black olives and pineapple are higher in calories than other vegetable toppings, due to the fat in olives and the sugar in pineapple, but are still a better option than meat. If you absolutely can't eat pizza without meat, the best choice is grilled chicken – as a lean protein, it keeps calories low by minimizing the amount of added fat.
Whether there's no food in the fridge or you just have a craving for takeout pizza, it's easy to get the convenience of freshly-made pizza without ruining your diet by making the right choices from their menu.