Switch up your sandwich and make it healthier with these 25 low-calorie sandwich topping ideas.
From protein-packed hummus to vegetable medleys, and even unexpected flavor combinations like apple butter and cream cheese, you’ll be amazed at the range of delicious ways you can dress up a simple lunchtime classic!
Each one is light yet flavorful, so indulge guilt-free in toppings that will not only save on calories but offer a boost of nutrition as well.
Start spicing up your sandwiches today with these low-calorie topping ideas!
25 Best Low-Calorie Sandwich Toppings
If you’re trying to eat healthier, sandwiches can be a great option.
The key is finding low-calorie toppings that still provide flavor and texture.
Here are 25 suggestions for sandwich toppings that won’t sabotage your diet:
Plant-Based Sandwich Toppings
- Hummus: A delicious spread that is perfect on sandwiches, hummus packs a flavorful punch while remaining low in calories. It’s made of mashed chickpeas, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice with the right spices added for extra flavor. Try adding some diced red bell peppers to your sandwich for crunch plus an extra hint of flavors!
- Sliced Avocado: This nutrient-packed fruit can add a creamy texture to any sandwich at minimal calories. Packed with healthy fats and fiber makes this an ideal energy provider when you’re trying to keep it light.
- Grilled Portobello Mushrooms: Fruity and earthy flavors come together perfectly when these mushrooms are cooked until they’ve achieved a deep golden hue, or take them up another level by grilling them first before adding them onto your sandwich.}
- Roasted Bell Peppers: Roasting brings out the sweetness in bell peppers that adds depth to any dish, including sandwiches! To bump up antioxidants and control sodium intake, opt for unsalted roasted bell peppers instead of jarred ones.
- Cucumber Slices: Light and refreshing cucumbers offer barely any caloric value while still packing a big taste due to their crunchy freshness. Enjoy their bright green color along with other crisp veggies like tomatoes or lettuce as part of the topping trifecta!
Lean Protein Sandwich Toppings
- Grilled Chicken Breast: Grilling chicken breast is a great way to make it low-calorie, but flavorful. Top off your sandwich with thinly sliced pieces of grilled chicken and some fresh sliced vegetables like tomato and cucumber for a tasty protein-packed option.
- Tuna Salad with Greek Yogurt: This is an ideal topping if you’re looking for something that’s high in protein while also being low in calories. For this topping, mix canned tuna (drained) with chopped celery, diced onion, and some light mayo or Greek yogurt to taste along with salt and pepper.
- Turkey Slices: Delicious thinly sliced pieces of turkey are perfect for adding flavor without loads of calories or fat content! Add a few slices of lightly seasoned lunch meat-grade turkey breast for a quick meal upgrade without the guilt.
- Hard Boiled Egg Slices: Cut up boiled eggs into thin slices to add additional protein as well as crunchy texture from the egg whites to your sandwich – all while staying low-calorie! Sprinkle on some freshly ground black pepper before serving to give it an extra kick.
- Smoked Salmon: If you’re feeling adventurous, top your sandwich off with a layer of smoked salmon slices instead! Not only is smoked salmon full b vitamins, omega 3s, and healthy fats which can help fight inflammation; but it also has an amazing flavor that can enhance impactful sandwiches without added ingredients.
Low-Fat Cheese Sandwich Toppings
- Feta Cheese Crumbles: Feta cheese is an excellent topping for sandwiches because of its robust and salty flavor. To keep calories in check, opt for feta cheese crumbles instead of slices. A quarter-cup serving clocks in at around 75 calories, while still adding lots of flavor to your creation.
- Low-Fat Cream Cheese: Nothing beats cream cheese in terms of providing a smooth and creamy texture to a sandwich. For health’s sake, look for low-fat versions that are still rich and tangy but don’t have the high saturated fat content associated with regular cream cheeses.
- Fresh Mozzarella Slices: These delicate rounds add welcome moisture as well as softness to your sandwich — not to mention a tasty hit of protein thanks to their milk base. The best part? Each slice packs only about 28 calories!
- Cottage Cheese: This versatile cheese can just be spooned over any type of bread or toast; or blended up with herbs and spices such as chives, dill weed, turmeric, etc., then spread thickly on the surface of the bread before layering with veggies like cucumber and tomato slices or avocado cubes. Cottage cheese provides 4 grams per 1/4 cup serving at only about 20 calories each — making it one great way to enjoy all the cheesy goodness without weighing yourself down.
- Ricotta Cheese: This one’s pretty versatile since you can choose between full-fat ricotta (packed with calcium) or non-fat versions (skyrocketing calci), depending on how health conscious you want to stay while eating your sandwich fillings – also adds richness along with some protein too! Spread onto individual pieces if using Italian focaccia-style bread.
Veggie Medley Sandwich Toppings
- Roasted Sweet Potato: A great way to add a burst of flavor and natural sweetness to your sandwich, roasted sweet potato helps to fill it out while keeping the calorie count low. Simply preheat an oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit before cutting one large sweet potato into thin slices and spreading them with olive oil on a baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes, or until they turn golden brown and lightly crispy on top – adding as much crunch as flavor!
- Sautéed Onions & Peppers: An easy yet effective addition that adds freshness and complementary flavors to your sandwich, sautéed onions & peppers don’t have many calories but have plenty of flavors. Heat about 1 tablespoon of oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat before slicing 2 bell peppers (any color) into thin strips along with 1 red onion, then cooking them until they soften up slightly – usually around 10 minutes should do the trick.
- Grilled Zucchini: Zucchini may not be the first thing you think of when wishing for something new for your sandwich topping but grilled zucchini makes an excellent low-calorie option that is full of nutrition thanks to its Vitamin C content! Cut two medium zucchinis into ½ inch discs, and sprinkle them with salt and pepper before grilling them on each side using either a grill pan or outdoor barbecue – just make sure they get nice and charred without becoming too mushy beneath their skin layer!
- Steamed Broccoli: Heralded as one of nature’s superfoods, steamed broccoli is packed full of vitamins without having any real caloric load itself — making it ideal for use on sandwiches! Fill a saucepan nearly halfway up with water before adding 1 cup of broccoli florets, then letting them cook for around 5 minutes until tender. Drain the excess water and mash the broccoli slightly before adding it to your sandwich for a healthy dose of flavor and crunch.
- Shredded carrots: Another great low-calorie option, shredded carrots can be used as a sandwich topping to offer a subtle sweetness and crunch. Peel and grate 2 large carrots before briefly microwaving them for 1 minute. Add them to your sandwich for a burst of flavor and texture without adding too many calories.
Sweet and Savory Sandwich Toppings
- Apple slices and cheddar cheese: This sweet and salty combination brings the perfect balance to any sandwich. It’s also low in calories with just 81 calories per serving.
- Banana slices: A juicy, creamy addition that is a great way to add natural sweetness without undoing your diet goals! One banana contains 105 calories.
- Grilled pineapple: Finely cut up a pineapple that has been grilled until it gets charred gives an intense flavor punch to your sandwich while only providing 77 calories per serving.
- Fig jam and goat cheese: An unexpected pairing for sure but absolutely delicious! The tangy goat cheese helps balance out the sweetness from the fig jam, all within 96 total caloric claims.
- Apricot preserves and ham slices: A classic combination of slightly sweet apricot preserves perfectly pairs with savory meats like ham or turkey deli slices – containing 82 total calories per serving size.
What should I put on my sandwich to lose weight?
If you’re trying to lose weight, the most important thing to consider when making sandwiches is choosing low-calorie toppings.
A few helpful tips for creating healthy and nutritious sandwiches without sacrificing flavor include:
- Using fewer condiments like mayonnaise or butter can add a lot of extra unnecessary fats and calories.
- Adding lean proteins such as thinly sliced roast beef, boiled egg whites, tuna fish in the water (not oil), or hummus. These are all great sources of protein with much less fat than red meats like bacon or sausage.
- Switching out higher-calorie white breads in favor of whole wheat bread or wraps to bump up your daily fiber intake!
- Experimenting with different types of unique condiments such as balsamic vinegar and reduced-sodium soy sauce instead of high-calorie dressings like ranch or thousand island dressing.
- Last but not least – don’t be afraid to layer on lots of fresh veggies! Lettuce, tomatoes, avocado slices, cucumbers and onions make all sorts of sandwich combinations that are both flavorful AND filling without being high in calories!
What are the healthiest things to put on a sandwich?
Health Benefits: Avocados are packed with essential vitamins and minerals that promote heart health and can help lower bad cholesterol levels. They’re also high in healthy fats, making them a great source of fuel for your body. Plus, they add a creamy texture to any sandwich!
Health Benefits: Tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant that may offer protection against certain types of cancers. This fuzzy fruit is also full of vitamin C and potassium! Slice them thinly or use sun-dried tomatoes to get the most flavor while keeping the slices thin.
Health Benefits: Spinach is packed with fiber and phytonutrients that are excellent for digestion and immune health. The flavonoids found in spinach may help reduce cancer risk as well as promote brain development in children. Make sure to buy organic spinach leaves when possible! (If you must buy conventional, rinse off the leaves before adding them to the sandwich).
Health Benefits: Hummus has become a popular alternative to other spreads such as mayo or butter because it provides numerous nutritional benefits. It’s made from pureed chickpeas which contain proteins that can help regulate blood sugar levels — perfect if you’re diabetic or interested in controlling your cravings throughout the day.
25 Best Low-Calorie Sandwich Toppings
- Sliced Avocado
- Grilled Portobello Mushrooms
- Roasted Bell Peppers
- Cucumber Slices
- Grilled Chicken Breast
- Tuna Salad with Greek Yogurt
- Turkey Slices
- Hard Boiled Egg Slices
- Smoked Salmon
- Feta Cheese Crumbles
- Low-Fat Cream Cheese
- Fresh Mozzarella Slices
- Cottage Cheese
- Ricotta Cheese
- Roasted Sweet Potato
- Sautéed Onions & Peppers
- Grilled Zucchini
- Steamed Broccoli
- Shredded carrots
- Apple slices and cheddar cheese
- Banana slices
- Grilled pineapple
- Fig jam and goat cheese
- Apricot preserves and ham slices
- Select your favorite toppings from this article.
- Prepare the toppings according to your preference.
- Prep your low-calorie sandwich in 30 minutes or less.
Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.