The Quesadilla Burger is a popular menu item at Applebee’s restaurants. It consists of a beef patty topped with pepper jack cheese, Applebee’s Queso Blanco, pico de gallo, lettuce, and chipotle mayo, served between two quesadilla “buns”. With its combination of protein, cheese, veggies, and sauce, it makes for a tasty and filling meal. However, for those counting carbohydrates, such as people with diabetes or on low-carb diets, the carb content is an important factor to consider. In this article, we will analyze the Quesadilla Burger’s nutritional information to determine the total carbohydrates.
According to Applebee’s nutrition facts, here is the macronutrient breakdown for the Quesadilla Burger:
This burger is high in calories, providing over half of the recommended 2000 daily calories for most adults. The high calorie count is expected given the generous protein and fat content.
Total Fat: 71g
With 71g of fat, the Quesadilla Burger supplies a whopping 109% of the recommended daily value. The bulk of the fat comes from the beef patty, pepper jack cheese, and queso.
Saturated Fat: 30g
Saturated fats should be limited to 20g daily. With 30g, the Quesadilla Burger exceeds the limit. Too much saturated fat from meat and cheese can negatively impact blood cholesterol levels.
Trans Fat: 1.5g
Trans fats from partially hydrogenated oils are considered the worst type for heart health. The small amount of 1.5g indicates some processed ingredients are used.
This burger contains a substantial amount of cholesterol, 55% of the 300mg daily limit, primarily from the beef and cheese. High cholesterol intake can increase blood cholesterol levels.
The very high sodium content, at 93% of the daily 2400mg maximum, is expected given the cheese, mayo-based sauce, and restaurant preparation. Too much sodium can exacerbate high blood pressure.
Total Carbohydrates: 77g
With 77g of carbohydrates, this Quesadilla Burger provides 26% of the daily 300g recommendation. For a low-carb meal, it lands on the higher side. We will do a deeper analysis of the carb content next.
Dietary Fiber: 4g
The fiber content is low, only 13% of the 25-30g daily recommendation. The refined flour tortillas and lack of whole food ingredients like beans explain the low fiber amount.
The small amount of sugar indicates no added sugars. The 6g of natural sugar comes from tomato, onion, and other produce in the burger.
With 59g of protein the Quesadilla Burger provides a hefty 118% of the recommended daily 50g protein intake, supporting a filling meal.
Analyzing the Carbohydrates
Now let’s take a detailed look at the carbohydrate content of this Applebee’s menu item.
Total Carbohydrates: 77g
As mentioned earlier, the nutrition facts report 77g total carbs per Quesadilla Burger. This represents 26% of a 300g daily carb allowance. For people limiting carbs to 50-150g daily, 77g lands on the higher side.
Net Carbohydrates: 73g
The net carbs are calculated by subtracting fiber from total carbs, since fiber benefits blood sugar control and gut health. With 4g of fiber, the net carbs in the Quesadilla Burger are 77g – 4g = 73g.
This 73g of net carbs is a more relevant number for blood sugar control. Consuming this burger alone would use up a big chunk of a low-carb diet allotment for an entire day.
The sugar content is low at just 6g, indicating no added sugars are used. The small amount comes from the tomato, onion, and other minimal produce sources in the burger.
So where exactly are all those carbohydrates coming from in this burger? Let’s analyze the main sources:
Quesadilla Buns: ~30g
The two quesadilla “buns” encasing the burger make up a significant portion of the carbs. Since quesadillas are made with flour tortillas, they contribute a high amount of starchy carbohydrates. Each tortilla likely provides around 15g net carbs.
Onions cooked into the quesadillas and raw onion in the pico de gallo provide a modest number of carbohydrate grams.
The tomatoes in the pico de gallo also contribute some natural sugars and carbs.
As a non-starchy vegetable low in carbs, the lettuce bun provides minimal carbohydrates.
Chipotle Mayo: ~5g
The mayonnaise-based chipotle sauce adds a small amount of carbs, likely from added sugars.
Queso Cheese Dip: ~10g
Cheese dips often have added thickeners and starch to provide a creamy texture, boosting the carb content slightly.
Pepper Jack Cheese: ~15g
Cheese does contain some natural carbohydrates, so the melted pepper jack cheese adds a bit more.
Beef Patty: ~0g
The beef patty itself is protein and fat with minimal carbs. The bun, sauces, cheese and veggies make up the majority of carbs.
Does It Fit Low-Carb Diets?
So is the Quesadilla Burger suitable for low-carb diets like Keto and Atkins? Let’s evaluate:
The Keto diet limits carbs to just 20-50g daily. With 73g net carbs, the Quesadilla Burger far exceeds a keto allowance. A few bite-size appetizer quesadillas may fit keto, but not the entire burger.
In Atkins’ Induction phase, carbs are restricted to just 20g per day. Later phases allow 50-150g daily. This burger may fit higher carb ranges only.
Paleo focuses on whole, unprocessed foods. The refined flour tortillas don’t qualify. But you could create a modified lower-carb Paleo version using lettuce wraps instead.
For diabetes carb counting, this burger alone would use up a big portion of a meal plan allotment. Eating half the bun could lower the carbs to a more moderate count.
Lower Carb Options
To enjoy the Quesadilla Burger on a low-carb diet, here are some suggestions to reduce the net carbs:
Skip the Torts
Order your quesadilla burger as a lettuce wrap instead of tortillas to eliminate the biggest source of carbs.
Replace the tortilla chips that come on the side with a lower carb salad or steamed veggies.
Eat open-faced, using just one quesadilla as the bottom bun. Scrape off some of the starchy queso dip as well.
Top your burger with fresh avocado slices for more fiber, fat, and flavor. A tasty way to help balance the carbs.
Nutrition Facts Table
|Nutrient||Amount||% Daily Value|
The Bottom Line
So how many total carbohydrates are in Applebee’s Quesadilla Burger? The nutrition information reports 77g per burger, with 73g as net carbs when you subtract fiber. This makes it too high in carbs for strict low-carb diets like Keto and Atkins Induction phase, but it can potentially fit into higher carb days. Ordering without the tortilla shell is one way to reduce the carbs and make it low-carb friendly. Overall, while tasty, the Quesadilla Burger is one of Applebee’s higher carb menu choices.