A McDonald’s triple cheeseburger is one of the more indulgent options on the McDonald’s menu. With three beef patties, three slices of cheese, onions, pickles, ketchup, and mustard, it definitely lives up to its “triple” name. But just how many calories are packed into one of these massive burgers?
What is a McDonald’s Triple Cheeseburger?
The McDonald’s triple cheeseburger is made up of the following ingredients:
- Three 100% beef patties
- Three slices of melty American cheese
- Sesame seed bun
It contains a total of three beef patties and three slices of cheese, hence the name “triple” cheeseburger. The patties and cheese are layered between a sesame seed bun along with onions, pickles, ketchup, and mustard.
The triple cheeseburger is one of the larger sandwiches on the McDonald’s menu. It packs much more beef and cheese than a regular hamburger or cheeseburger from McDonald’s. The triple cheeseburger is a go-to option for customers looking to indulge in a heartier, more filling McDonald’s sandwich.
Nutrition Facts for a McDonald’s Triple Cheeseburger
So how many calories are in a McDonald’s triple cheeseburger? Here are the basic nutrition facts:
- Calories: 760
- Total Fat: 43g
- Saturated Fat: 18g
- Trans Fat: 1.5g
- Cholesterol: 135mg
- Sodium: 1180mg
- Total Carbohydrates: 49g
- Dietary Fiber: 2g
- Sugars: 9g
- Protein: 39g
A triple cheeseburger from McDonald’s contains a whopping 760 calories. It also contains high amounts of fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium.
The 760 calories come from the three beef patties, three slices of cheese, and the additional toppings like the bun, onions, pickles, ketchup, and mustard. The majority of calories come from the beef and cheese.
Detailed Breakdown of Calories in a Triple Cheeseburger
To understand where all those calories come from, let’s break down the triple cheeseburger ingredient-by-ingredient:
Calories from the Beef Patties
There are three 100% beef patties on a McDonald’s triple cheeseburger.
Each McDonald’s hamburger patty contains roughly 110 calories.
So with three patties total, the patties contribute approximately 330 calories to the triple cheeseburger.
Protein-rich beef is fairly high in calories. The calories in the beef come primarily from its fat content. Leaner cuts of beef can have slightly fewer calories.
Calories from Cheese
There are three slices of melty American cheese on the triple cheeseburger.
Each slice of American cheese has about 50 calories.
So three slices contributes an estimated 150 calories from cheese.
Cheese is high in fat, which translates to higher calorie content. The saturated fat in cheese comes from sources like milk, cream, and butter.
Calories from the Bun
The McDonald’s triple cheeseburger features a regular sesame seed hamburger bun.
An average plain hamburger bun contains roughly 120 calories.
So the bun contributes approximately 120 calories to the triple cheeseburger.
Buns get a good portion of their calories from carbohydrates. The sesame seeds on top add small amounts of fat and protein as well.
Calories from Onions
The McDonald’s triple cheeseburger includes sliced onions as a topping.
Onions are very low in calories – each onion slice has under 5 calories.
Estimating around 15 calories total for the onion slices on the triple cheeseburger.
Onions get their minimal calories from carbohydrates and a tiny amount of protein.
Calories from Pickles
The triple cheeseburger also comes with tangy dill pickle slices.
Each pickle slice has about 1 calorie.
With 2-3 pickle slices total, they contribute roughly 5 calories to the triple cheeseburger.
Pickles get their calories mostly from sodium and a small amount of carbohydrates.
Calories from Ketchup and Mustard
As typical burger condiments, ketchup and mustard are included on the triple cheeseburger.
Ketchup has about 20 calories per tablespoon, while mustard has 5-10 calories per teaspoon.
The total calories from ketchup and mustard on a triple cheeseburger is estimated around 30-40 calories.
Ketchup gets its calories from added sugar, while mustard’s come from small amounts of fat and protein.
Adding up the calorie estimates of each ingredient:
- Beef patties: 330 calories
- Cheese slices: 150 calories
- Bun: 120 calories
- Onions: 15 calories
- Pickles: 5 calories
- Ketchup & mustard: 30-40 calories
This puts the total calories for a McDonald’s triple cheeseburger at around 650-660 calories.
The official reported calorie count is 760 calories. This takes into account variations in ingredient sizes, cooking methods, and other factors.
Daily Calorie Needs
To put the 760 calories into perspective, here is how it compares to daily calorie needs:
– For a sedentary adult man: 760 calories is about 38% of a 2,000 calorie diet.
– For a sedentary adult woman: 760 calories is about 48% of a 1,600 calorie diet.
– For a moderately active adult man: 760 calories is about 32% of a 2,400 calorie diet.
– For a moderately active adult woman: 760 calories is about 42% of a 1,800 calorie diet.
So the triple cheeseburger provides over 30% or more of total daily calories for most adults.
It’s clear that the McDonald’s triple cheeseburger is a very high calorie menu option.
Comparing Calories to Other McDonald’s Burgers
How does the McDonald’s triple cheeseburger compare calorie-wise to other McDonald’s burgers?
Here is a calorie comparison (based on standard US nutrition info for beef burgers):
The triple cheeseburger has nearly double the calories of a double cheeseburger, and over three times more calories than a basic hamburger.
It is one of the highest calorie items you can order off the McDonald’s burger menu. Only specialty burgers like the Big Mac and Quarter Pounder with Cheese have more calories from McDonald’s regular burger lineup.
Ways to Make the Triple Cheeseburger Healthier
The McDonald’s triple cheeseburger certainly packs a caloric punch. Here are some tips for how to lighten it up:
Skip the Extra Cheese and Bun
Ask for just one or two slices of cheese instead of three. You can also opt for no cheese at all.
Order your triple cheeseburger in a lettuce wrap instead of a bun to eliminate the refined carbs and calories.
Load Up on Veggies
Get extra servings of onions, pickles, tomatoes, lettuce, and other veggie toppings in place of the extra cheese and bun. They provide nutrients and fiber with minimal calories.
Cut It in Half
You can always order the triple cheeseburger, then wrap up half for another meal. This cuts the calories in one sitting by about 50%.
Swap for Smaller Burgers
A more reasonable option is getting a single hamburger, cheeseburger, or double cheeseburger instead. You still satisfy the burger craving with far fewer calories.
Pair with Lower Calorie Side
Order a side salad, apple slices, or yogurt instead of fries to balance the meal. Avoid sodas and shakes which add even more calories.
Healthier Homemade Cheeseburger Alternatives
You can also make much lighter cheeseburgers at home. Some healthier homemade options include:
Turkey or Veggie Burgers
Swap beef for lower calorie ground turkey or vegetarian patties. Load up with veggie toppings. Use whole grain buns for more fiber.
Portobello Mushroom Burgers
Grilled marinated portobello caps make delicious high protein, low calorie bunless burgers.
Burgers made from canned salmon are leaner and have heart healthy omega-3s.
Grilled Chicken Breast Burgers
Chicken burgers are lower in saturated fat than beef. Use a light marinade and low calorie cheese.
Black Bean Burgers
Bean burgers are very high in fiber to keep you full. Spice them up with chili powder and cumin.
A McDonald’s triple cheeseburger contains a hefty 760 calories. That’s over 30% of recommended daily calories for most adults from one burger.
The high calorie count comes primarily from its three 100% beef patties and three slices of cheese. The bun, condiments, and toppings add calories as well.
To lighten up the triple cheeseburger, you can customize it with less cheese and no bun. Adding veggies in place of cheese and ordering a small size are other good options.
For a healthier cheeseburger overall, homemade turkey, veggie, bean, or chicken burgers are all lighter alternatives.
So if you want to indulge in a triple cheeseburger, be mindful of the very high calorie content. There are many ways to enjoy cheeseburgers while still maintaining a balanced diet.