How many calories are in a turkey and cheese sandwich on white bread?

A turkey and cheese sandwich on white bread can range from 300-500 calories depending on the amount and type of turkey, cheese, and bread used. The calories largely come from the protein in the turkey and cheese as well as the carbohydrates in the bread. To get a more accurate calorie count, it is best to look at the nutrition facts label of each ingredient used.

Calories in Turkey

Turkey breast is a lean source of protein and relatively low in calories. A 3 ounce serving of sliced roasted turkey breast with no skin contains about 120 calories. Turkey cold cuts and deli slices may be slightly higher in calories due to added oils or seasonings. For example:

  • 3 ounces roasted turkey breast, no skin: 120 calories
  • 3 ounces oven roasted turkey breast: 140 calories
  • 3 ounces low sodium turkey breast deli meat: 150 calories
  • 3 ounces smoked turkey deli meat: 180 calories

So 3 ounces (about 2-3 thin slices) of turkey breast can range from 120-180 calories depending on the type.

Calories in Cheese

Cheese is high in fat and protein. Calorie content varies significantly based on the type and amount of cheese used. Some common options include:

  • 1 ounce cheddar cheese: 110 calories
  • 1 ounce Swiss cheese: 108 calories
  • 1 ounce provolone cheese: 100 calories
  • 1 ounce American cheese: 90 calories

For a turkey sandwich, the cheese is often sliced. Two slices or about 1 ounce of cheese can add 90-110 calories to the sandwich.

Calories in Bread

On a turkey sandwich, white bread is a common choice. Two slices of basic white sandwich bread contain about 140 calories. More specifics:

  • 2 slices basic white bread: 140 calories
  • 2 slices whole wheat bread: 132 calories
  • 2 slices sourdough bread: 160 calories
  • 2 slices rye bread: 176 calories

White and wheat bread have a similar calorie count per slice. Sourdough and rye bread tend to be slightly higher in calories.

Putting It All Together

Combining the turkey, cheese and bread, a very basic turkey and cheese sandwich on white bread would contain about:

  • 2 slices white bread: 140 calories
  • 3 oz turkey breast: 120 calories
  • 1 oz cheddar cheese: 110 calories

Total: 370 calories

This provides a rough estimate, but can vary based on the exact ingredients used. Some additions that can increase the calorie count:

  • Using higher calorie deli turkey like smoked turkey rather than plain turkey breast
  • Adding extra cheese slices
  • Using higher calorie bread like sourdough
  • Spreading mayonnaise or butter on the bread (about 100 calories per tablespoon)
  • Adding avocado, bacon or other high-fat toppings

And some ways to reduce the calorie count:

  • Using lower calorie bread like light wheat
  • Reducing cheese to 1 slice
  • Avoiding high-fat spreads and toppings
  • Choosing lower sodium turkey to minimize added oils

In general, an average turkey and cheese sandwich on white bread will range from 300-500 calories depending on your specific ingredients. The best way to know for sure is to check labels and add up the calories of all the components.

Nutritional Breakdown of a Turkey Sandwich

Beyond just calories, here is the nutritional breakdown for a standard turkey and cheese sandwich:

Nutrient Amount % Daily Value
Calories 370 18%
Total Fat 12g 18%
Saturated Fat 4.5g 23%
Protein 28g 56%
Carbohydrates 30g 10%
Fiber 2g 8%
Sodium 880mg 37%

Key points about the nutrition:

  • Provides significant protein mainly from the turkey and cheese
  • Also contains a good amount of fat, especially saturated fat primarily from the cheese
  • Carbohydrates mostly come from the bread
  • Relatively low in fiber, only 8% DV
  • High in sodium, over 1/3 of recommended daily intake

Health Benefits of Turkey Sandwiches

Turkey and cheese sandwiches can provide some valuable nutrients and health benefits, including:

  • Protein: Turkey and cheese are high quality protein sources. Protein is essential for building and repairing muscles and tissues.
  • Vitamin B12: Turkey contains vitamin B12 which supports red blood cell formation and neurological function.
  • Calcium: The cheese provides a good amount of calcium which is important for bone health and strength.
  • Zinc: Turkey supplies zinc which helps immune health and cell growth.
  • Phosphorus: Both turkey and cheese are sources of phosphorus, a mineral that aids energy production.

However, there are some nutritional downsides to consider as well:

  • High in sodium from the deli meats, cheese, and bread
  • Higher in saturated fat depending on ingredients used
  • Lower in fiber compared to sandwiches made with whole grain bread and produce

Overall, turkey sandwiches can provide protein, important vitamins and minerals. To make them healthier, use whole grain bread, pile on the veggies, and limit high-sodium ingredients.

Low Calorie Options for Turkey Sandwiches

There are several ways to reduce the calories in a turkey sandwich while still keeping it full of flavor:

  • Use light or low-calorie bread: Choose lower calorie bread like light wheat or sprouted grain which can save 20-40 calories per slice compared to regular white bread.
  • Load up on veggies: Add a pile of sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, spinach or other favorite veggies to add nutrition without many calories.
  • Use mustard instead of mayo: Mustard has about 5-15 calories per teaspoon compared to 90-100 for mayonnaise.
  • Go easy on cheese: Stick to 1 slice or about 1 ounce of low-fat cheese like Swiss or provolone to trim calories.
  • Use lean turkey: Opt for skinless, lower sodium turkey breast over more processed deli meats.
  • Skip fatty additions: Bacon, avocado, Ranch dressing and other high-fat toppings can add hundreds of extra calories.

With smart substitutions and ingredient swaps, you can easily make a turkey sandwich 300 calories or less while keeping it full of flavor.


A turkey and cheese sandwich made with 2 slices of white bread, 3 ounces turkey breast and 1 ounce cheese contains approximately 370 calories. The number of calories can vary from 300-500 calories depending on the exact ingredients and amounts used in the sandwich. Choosing lower calorie bread, reducing cheese, and adding vegetables are effective ways to cut calories in a turkey sandwich while maintaining nutrition. In moderation, turkey sandwiches can provide benefits like protein, calcium and zinc but should be balanced with lower sodium options as part of a healthy diet.

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