Sneaky High Calorie Foods

High Calorie Tricksters

Written by Sound Body and Mind staff

The following are 8 “tricky foods”. They sound low-calorie, but have a ton of hidden calories hiding inside of them. Although these foods do have many health benefits, on a caloric level, they are real scoundrels. Here are the surprising caloric breakdowns of some everyday foods:



Green and tender, the avocado is indeed a very healthy vegetable. Avocados have beneficial fatty acids, they are rich in potassium, and loaded vitamin A. But strictly calorically speaking, just one avocado has approximately 276 calories. If you are on a 2000 calorie a day diet, that is 14% of your day caloric intake.


Juice Smoothies

Juice smoothies are a refreshing cool drink that feels great after a long day or a heavy workout. But beware, your typical juice smoothie can have up to a whopping 400-500 calories in it. Places like Jamba juice offer low calorie versions of their smoothies, and that is a far better way to go. Remember: Juice can be a very high calorie alternative to water, so think before you drink!


Vegetarian Food

How can you get too many calories out of nuts and twigs? Easily. Dairy, including high calorie cheese, milk, and ice cream, are all vegetarian (if not vegan). Oils are vegetarian, and so are high calorie nuts. Stay away from these foods if you are watching your caloric intake. Oh, and chocolate pie...also vegetarian.



Granola is so crunchy, so tasty, and so loaded in fat and calories. Your typical cupful of granola has 400-450 calories in it. The nuts and grains are stuck together with fats and sugars. If you are hiking, then great, dig in. But if you are watching TV forget about it.



Although nuts are filled with beneficial oil and fats, they are choc full of calories. Just a cup of almonds are 546 calories. Here are some more nutty calories:


  • Walnuts: 785 calories per cup
  • Cashews: 786 calories per cup
  • Hazelnuts: 722 calories per cup
  • Peanuts: 814 calories per cup


Nuts, especially when they are roasted and salted, are like potato chips- you can’t eat just one. So if you are going to snack on this food, do it in extreme moderation.


Salad Dressing

People tend to think of salads as a healthy low calorie alternative to heavy meals, and they are. However, we usually cover our delicious lettuce, crunchy carrots, and juicy tomatoes with gobs of liquid fat known as salad dressing. The typical calorie count of a tablespoon of ranch dressing is 73 calories, and a tablespoon of Italian is 43 calories. And who puts only a tablespoon of dressing on their salad?

A great solution to the salad dressing problem is to buy fat free or light salad dressing. They come on all of the great flavors of regular dressing without the calories. Stroll down your dressing and sauces isle, and take a look, you might be surprised at the variety of low calorie options.


One cup of orange juice is 112 calories. When watching your caloric intake, don’t ingest extra calories through liquids. Every kind of juice is pretty heavy on the calories. If you really want a fruity drink, then try diluting your juice with water. Other tasty options are fruity teas (without sugar).

Here are how other juices stack up:


  • Apple juice: 117 calories per cup
  • Grape juice: 154 calories per cup
  • Pineapple Juice: 132 calories per cup


Energy Bars

Many of us eat an energy bar after a workout, before a walk, or when we are on the go and don't have time for a sit down meal. Energy bars can be quite beneficial for your health, giving you much needed vitamins, minerals, and proteins. But be aware that they can also be full of fat and calories. Many energy bars have to stay on the shelf for long periods of time and contain trans fats as a preservative. Your typical energy bar may contain 250-300 per bar. Be sure to read labels before you buy and gobble up your next energy bar. 

So there you have it 8 foods that have lots of hidden calories in them. Next time you go shopping, it might be a good idea to look on the internet for a calorie counting website before you shop. 

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