Wonton soup is a classic Chinese comfort food that is loved by many. It typically consists of a broth filled with dumplings called wontons. Wontons are small pieces of filled dough that can contain meat or vegetables. Determining the calories in wonton soup depends on the specific ingredients in both the broth and the wontons.
Calories in Wonton Soup Broth
The broth is the base of the wonton soup and can greatly vary in calories depending on how it is prepared. Here are some common ingredients and their calorie contents for a one cup serving of wonton soup broth:
- Chicken broth: 45 calories
- Beef broth: 50 calories
- Vegetable broth: 15 calories
- Noodle: 200 calories
- Bok choy: 20 calories
- Soy sauce: 10 calories
- Sesame oil: 120 calories
- Ginger: 5 calories
- Garlic: 5 calories
- Green onions: 5 calories
A typical wonton soup broth is made with chicken broth and might include vegetables like bok choy and green onions. It is also common to add soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, and ginger to flavor the broth.
For example, 1 cup of chicken broth plus 1 tbsp each of soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and 5 stalks of bok choy would be about 245 calories.
Calories in Wontons
In addition to the broth, wontons are small dumplings that can have a wide range of fillings. The filling determines the calories and nutrients in each wonton. Here are some common wonton fillings and their calorie contents for 1 wonton:
- Pork: 50 calories
- Shrimp: 30 calories
- Vegetables: 25 calories
- Tofu: 20 calories
Pork and shrimp are traditional wonton fillings. Vegetable or tofu can be lower calorie options. The calories can vary slightly depending on factors like portion size and any additional seasonings added to the filling.
Full Nutrition Facts for Wonton Soup
Now let’s put it together to see the full nutrition facts for a typical wonton soup with 4 wontons:
|1 cup chicken broth||45|
|1 tbsp soy sauce||10|
|1 tbsp sesame oil||120|
|1 tbsp minced garlic||5|
|1 tbsp minced ginger||5|
|5 stalks bok choy, chopped||20|
|4 pork wontons||200|
Based on typical ingredients, a wonton soup with 4 pork wontons would contain about 405 calories. The broth accounts for 205 of those calories, while the 4 wontons account for 200 calories.
Lower Calorie Options
There are some simple substitutions that can lower the calories in wonton soup:
- Use vegetable or chicken broth instead of beef broth
- Use less oil and limit added salt or soy sauce
- Fill wontons with veggies instead of pork or shrimp
- Reduce the number of wontons
For example, 4 vegetable wontons in a low-sodium chicken broth with just 1 tsp sesame oil would be around 245 calories.
Factors That Alter Calories
Keep in mind that the actual calorie count can vary depending on:
- Exact ingredient amounts and broth composition
- Cooking methods used for broth
- Size of wontons
- Use of deep frying vs boiling/steaming for wontons
Using more oil, frying wontons, or having larger wontons can all increase the calories. Making broth from scratch can also alter the calories versus using canned or boxed broths.
Daily Calorie Needs
To put the 405 calories in perspective, here are some guidelines for daily calorie needs:
- Sedentary women: 1,600-2,000 calories
- Active women: 2,000-2,400 calories
- Sedentary men: 2,000-2,600 calories
- Active men: 2,400-3,000 calories
A bowl of wonton soup would provide about 20-25% of calories needed for an average day. For a 2,000 calorie diet, it fits well as part of a balanced meal.
Beyond just calories, wonton soup has some great nutrition:
- Protein from the broth, wonton filling, and noodles
- Vitamins and minerals from veggies like bok choy
- Fiber, especially if veggie wontons are used
- Heart-healthy fats from sesame oil
Wonton soup can be a smart choice as the noodles and wontons provide carbs for energy, the veggies add key nutrients, and the protein keeps you full. Be mindful of sodium levels if using canned broths or lots of soy sauce.
Weight Loss Considerations
At around 400 calories for a bowl with 4 wontons, wonton soup can be worked into a weight loss diet. Some tips:
- Start with broth only or just 1-2 wontons
- Fill up on low calorie veggies like bok choy
- Avoid frying wontons if trying to limit fat
- Use lighter broths like chicken or vegetable-based
- Limit high-calorie additions like noodles or dumplings
Pairing your wonton soup with green tea, salmon sashimi, or fresh fruit can create a nicely balanced lower calorie meal.
Wonton soup can range from around 200 to 500 calories depending on the specific ingredients used. A typical bowl with a chicken broth base and 4 pork wontons provides about 405 calories. Lower calorie options include using vegetable broth, limiting oil, and filling wontons with veggies instead of meat. At 400 calories, wonton soup can fit into a healthy diet when portion sizes are balanced. Be sure to round out your meal with vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.