Which is healthier Egg McMuffin or Sausage McMuffin?

When looking for a quick and convenient breakfast, McDonald’s Egg McMuffin and Sausage McMuffin are go-to options for many. But which one is the healthier choice? There are a few key differences between the two sandwiches that are important to consider.

The Egg McMuffin is made with an English muffin, egg, Canadian bacon, and cheese. The Sausage McMuffin has the same ingredients, except it substitutes pork sausage patties instead of Canadian bacon.

Both sandwiches pack in the protein, which will help keep you full and energized throughout the morning. The carbohydrates from the English muffin also provide a quick source of energy. However, there are some notable nutritional differences between the two that may make one healthier than the other for some individuals.

Calories and Macronutrients

The most obvious difference between the Egg McMuffin and Sausage McMuffin is the number of calories:

Sandwich Calories
Egg McMuffin 300
Sausage McMuffin 370

The Sausage McMuffin contains about 70 more calories than the Egg McMuffin. While 70 calories may not seem significant, it can make a difference if you’re closely monitoring your calorie intake.

In terms of macronutrients, both sandwiches contain protein, fat, and carbohydrates. However, the Sausage McMuffin has a higher fat and protein content:

Sandwich Protein (g) Carbs (g) Fat (g)
Egg McMuffin 17 26 12
Sausage McMuffin 19 24 18

The extra 6 grams of fat in the Sausage McMuffin come from the pork sausage patties, which are higher in fat than the Canadian bacon in the Egg McMuffin.

So for someone limiting fat or calories, the Egg McMuffin would be the better choice between the two.

Sodium Content

Sodium is another nutrient to pay attention to when comparing fast food breakfast sandwiches. Excess sodium intake has been linked to high blood pressure and other health issues.

Here is how the two McMuffin sandwiches compare in sodium content:

Sandwich Sodium (mg)
Egg McMuffin 830
Sausage McMuffin 920

The Sausage McMuffin again comes in higher, with 90 more milligrams of sodium than the Egg McMuffin.

The recommendation for daily sodium intake is 1500-2300 mg per day, so both sandwiches supply a significant amount of our sodium for the day. However, for those limiting sodium, the Egg McMuffin would be the better option.

Saturated Fat and Cholesterol

Saturated fat and cholesterol are two other nutrients to examine, as diets high in saturated fat and cholesterol have been linked to heart disease risk.

The Sausage McMuffin contains higher amounts of both saturated fat and cholesterol:

Sandwich Saturated Fat (g) Cholesterol (mg)
Egg McMuffin 4.5 165
Sausage McMuffin 6 195

The American Heart Association recommends limiting saturated fat to 13 grams per day and dietary cholesterol to 300 mg per day. So both sandwiches supply significant saturated fat and cholesterol.

However, the Sausage McMuffin’s higher saturated fat and cholesterol numbers again make the Egg McMuffin the better choice for heart health.

Protein Sources

Both sandwiches provide protein from eggs, cheese, and meat. However, there are some important differences in the protein sources that may make one healthier than the other for certain individuals.

The Canadian bacon on the Egg McMuffin contains less saturated fat and cholesterol than the pork sausage patties on the Sausage McMuffin. Canadian bacon is cured and smoked pork loin, while sausage patties are ground pork with added fat.

For those limiting saturated fat and cholesterol, the Canadian bacon on the Egg McMuffin would be the healthier protein source.

However, some individuals may need to limit nitrates, which are used as preservatives in processed meats like Canadian bacon. For example, those with certain medical conditions like gout are advised to limit nitrate intake from processed meats.

In this case, the fresh (unprocessed) pork sausage patties would be advantageous over the Canadian bacon in the Egg McMuffin. While fresh sausage is higher in saturated fat and cholesterol, it contains no added preservatives.

So in terms of protein sources, there are advantages to each sandwich depending on an individual’s specific health needs.

Fiber Content

Getting adequate fiber is important for digestive health, weight management, and preventing chronic diseases.

Here is the fiber content of each sandwich:

Sandwich Fiber (g)
Egg McMuffin 2
Sausage McMuffin 1

The Egg McMuffin provides 2 grams of fiber, while the Sausage McMuffin contains 1 gram.

While neither sandwich is a high fiber food, the extra gram of fiber makes the Egg McMuffin a slightly better choice for those looking to increase fiber intake.

Vitamins and Minerals

When it comes to vitamins and minerals, there are no major differences between the two sandwiches.

Both provide vitamins A, C, and D, calcium, and iron primarily from the egg and cheese.

The food items on both sandwiches have minimal nutritional value beyond protein, fat, carbs, and the vitamins and minerals mentioned.

So in terms of vitamin and mineral content, neither sandwich has a significant advantage.

Potential Add-Ons

While this comparison focuses on the standard Egg McMuffin versus Sausage McMuffin, individuals can modify their sandwiches at McDonald’s to increase the nutritional value.

Some healthier add-on options include:

– Substitute egg whites instead of whole eggs – Removes cholesterol and decreases saturated fat

– Add vegetables like spinach, tomatoes, or avocado – Increases fiber, vitamins, and minerals

– Use multigrain English muffin instead of regular – Adds fiber and nutrients

– Order mustard or avocado spread instead of butter – Decreases saturated fat

– Ask for lower sodium Canadian bacon – Reduces sodium content

Making simple substitutions or additions like these can make either sandwich healthier. For example, swapping out the regular English muffin for multigrain adds an extra gram of fiber. Overall, customizing your sandwich can allow you to modify it based on your specific nutritional needs and health goals.

Potential Side Orders

While the Egg McMuffin and Sausage McMuffin themselves are fairly similar in nutritional value, side order choices can also impact the overall healthiness.

Some healthier side order options include:

– Fruit cup – Provides fiber, vitamins, minerals

– Yogurt parfait – Protein, calcium, fiber, less added sugar than other desserts

– Apple slices – Fiber, vitamin C

– Side salad with vinaigrette dressing – Vitamins, minerals from vegetables; healthier unsaturated fats

And less healthy options to avoid:

– Hash browns – High in fat and sodium, minimal nutritional value

– Donuts, pastries, or muffins – High in refined carbs, added sugar, and unhealthy fats

– Creamy dips for fruits or vegetables – Adds unnecessary saturated fat, sodium

Choosing nutrient-dense fruits, vegetables, and lean protein as sides will make a meal healthier, while fried foods, sugary desserts, and fatty dips add calories without much nutritional benefit.

So pairing either sandwich with healthier side options can improve the overall nutritional quality of your McDonald’s breakfast.

Potential Drinks

Again, drink choice makes a big impact on the nutrition of your total McDonald’s breakfast.

Some healthier drink options:

– Water – Hydrates without any calories, carbs, or sugars

– Low-fat milk – Provides calcium, vitamin D, and protein with less fat than whole milk

– Unsweetened coffee or tea – Get a caffeine boost without added sugars

And less healthy options:

– Sweetened juices – Packed with added sugar and calories without fiber benefits of whole fruits

– Soda – High in added sugar and empty calories

– Sweetened lattes – While providing some milk benefits, often high in calories, sugar, and unhealthy fats

Choosing water, low-fat milk, or unsweetened coffee or tea will prevent empty liquid calories. Staying adequately hydrated with water is also important for overall health.

Portion Sizes

In addition to nutritional content, portion sizes should be considered when comparing the Egg McMuffin versus Sausage McMuffin.

While one sandwich may be a healthier choice, eating multiple sandwiches or large side orders during a meal can quickly add up in calories, fat, sodium, etc.

Here are the basic nutritional values for one Egg McMuffin versus one Sausage McMuffin. But it’s important to limit portions to a single sandwich with reasonable side and drink choices in the context of your daily calorie needs.

Choosing larger-sized “meals” with multiple sandwiches and supersized options for hash browns, dipping sauces, and sugary drinks can make either breakfast less healthy overall.

Weight Loss Considerations

If you’re trying to lose weight, both the Egg McMuffin and Sausage McMuffin can be part of a healthy weight loss diet when eaten in moderation.

The high protein content of both sandwiches helps you stay satiated and prevents overeating later in the day. However, to lose weight you must burn more calories than you consume.

Here are some tips for enjoying either sandwich as part of a weight loss plan:

– Order only one sandwich and avoid supersizing side or drink options

– Pair your sandwich with lower calorie options like an apple slice or side salad

– Drink water or black coffee instead of caloric beverages

– Exercise portion control and do not add calorie-dense spreads or dressings

– Limit yourself to just one sandwich per day as part of a reduced calorie diet

Both sandwiches can provide a protein boost to help with weight loss. But calories still matter, so focus on healthy portion sizes as part of an overall lower calorie meal plan.

Cost Comparison

In addition to nutrition, cost may also factor into your McMuffin decision. Here is how the prices compare:

Sandwich Price
Egg McMuffin $3.99
Sausage McMuffin $3.99

The Egg McMuffin and Sausage McMuffin are the exact same price. So cost does not give either one an advantage.

Of course, total breakfast cost will vary based on side orders and drinks added. But when comparing just the basic sandwiches, they are equal in price.

Taste Preferences

Personal taste preferences may also guide you toward preferring Egg McMuffin or Sausage McMuffin.

Some reasons you may prefer the Egg McMuffin:

– Enjoy the Canadian bacon taste and texture

– Prefer the lower salt and fat content

– Like having an egg-focused sandwich

Reasons you may prefer the Sausage McMuffin:

– Love the sausage patty taste and texture

– Appreciate the extra protein from sausage

– Like the added flavor from higher fat content

While taste is individual, the pork sausage tends to have a richer, meatier flavor from its higher fat content. The Canadian bacon provides a lighter taste profile.

So think about whether your taste buds prefer leaner Canadian bacon or fattier, more savory sausage patties when choosing between the sandwiches.


When comparing the standard Egg McMuffin and Sausage McMuffin, the Egg McMuffin tends to be the healthier option due to lower calories, fat, sodium, and cholesterol.

However, for individuals who need to moderate nitrates or are not worried about higher fat and sodium content, the Sausage McMuffin may be a better choice.

Customizing your sandwich, pairing it with healthy sides and drinks, and watching portion sizes can make either sandwich work within the context of an overall balanced diet.

Taste preferences may also guide you towards bacon or sausage. But for nutritional considerations alone, the Egg McMuffin generally comes out on top as the healthier default breakfast sandwich option between these two McDonalds classics.

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