24 Milkshakes With More Calories Than an Entire Meal

  • Slide 1 of 25: Milkshakes have been around since at least the late 19th century -- there was mention of an “an Atlanta drink" called "milk shake,” in the Atlanta Constitution in 1886. That prototype milkshake included just milk, crushed ice, “a mixture of unknown ingredients,” and “a bit of any desired sirup,” as the newspaper explained.” Eventually, people started using ice cream and cookies, creating a real caloric bomb, albeit an irresistibly delicious one. Dieticians estimate Americans should break down their meal consumption throughout the day as follows: 300 to 400 calories for breakfast and 500 to 700 calories each for lunch and dinner, plus about 200 for snacks. Most people are more likely to overeat rather than undereat, so 24/7 Tempo reviewed the menus of more than a dozen chain restaurants to compile a list of milkshakes that exceeded 700 calories. Calorie counts were taken either from the nutritional information provided by the chain on its website or from Nutrition Charts, a food nutrition data site. Most places that make good shakes offer them in great variety, going beyond just the classic chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. Bits of cookie, candy, even cake get mixed into shakes, which significantly add to the total caloric amount. Shakes became popular in the 1950s. They can still be found in just about every burger joint or diner in America -- and this is the best diner in every state. Many of the milkshakes at popular fast-food operations actually fall below the 700 number -- but largely due to their size. If people order the mini or small version, they will most likely consume a drink with 400 to 700 calories. But who orders a mini shake? Some shakes have calorie counts that not only exceed the standard for a single meal but come very close to the recommended intake for an entire day of about 2,000 calories. This is how long you need to exercise to burn off the calories from your favorite foods.
  • Slide 2 of 25: > Chain: Arby's > Calories: 1,060 There are 350 calories in a snack-size Jamocha Handcrafted Shake, and 830 in a medium.
  • Slide 3 of 25: > Chain: Arby's > Calories: 900 This is the "low-cal" entry among Arby's shakes, with a snack serving coming in at 280 calories and a medium at 690. ALSO READ: America’s 25 Favorite Burger Joints
  • Slide 4 of 25: > Chain: Baskin-Robbins > Calories: 1,440 A person who wanted to meet a daily calorie goal of 2,000 could enjoy this extravagant shake and still eat one medium-size bagel all day, without butter or cream cheese. Period.
  • Slide 5 of 25: > Chain: Baskin-Robbins > Calories: 1,520 Even a small serving of this shake exceeds 700 calories, at 760. ALSO READ: Signature Drinks From Every State
  • Slide 6 of 25:  > Chain: Burger King > Calories: 740   A shake the Burger King menu describes as simply an Oreo Shake (without added chocolate?) is also over the limit, at 720 calories.
  • Slide 7 of 25: > Chain: Cheesecake Factory > Calories: 1,630 This dinner house chain, famous for its extravagant portions, offers just four "creamy milkshake" varieties -- chocolate, strawberry, vanilla, and Oreo -- in one size only.
  • Slide 8 of 25: > Chain: Cheesecake Factory > Calories: 1,260 This calorie count for a chocolate shake without cookie or candy add-ins is higher than usual. ALSO READ: 35 Signature Drinks From Around the World
  • Slide 9 of 25: > Chain: Cheesecake Factory > Calories: 1,210 The Cheesecake Factory's strawberry milkshake shares the same calorie count as this one.
  • Slide 10 of 25: > Chain: Cold Stone Creamery > Calories: 1,610 Cold Stone lists calorie counts for their milkshakes (which come in two sizes, regular and large) both with and without their "whipped topping" (made with hydrogenated palm, palm kernel, coconut, and/or cottonseed oil, corn syrup, and sugar, among other things). This number is without. With the topping, it would climb up to 1740. ALSO READ: Most Popular Beers With the Most and Fewest Calories
  • Slide 11 of 25: > Chain: Cold Stone Creamery > Calories: 1,300 With whipped topping added, this shake reaches 1,440 calories.
  • Slide 12 of 25: > Chain: Cold Stone Creamery > Calories: 1,280 Cold Stone lists just six varieties of shake. With two sizes and the whipped topping option, that adds up to 24 in all. Of that number, only one shake -- the smaller, untopped Savory Strawberry, is under 700 calories. ALSO READ: These Are the Strangest Foods From Every State
  • Slide 13 of 25: > Chain: Dairy Queen > Calories: 1,250 Dairy Queen's shakes come in small, medium, and large -- no snack or mini sizes.
  • Slide 14 of 25: > Chain: Dairy Queen > Calories: 990 The chain takes a signature drink, adding whipped topping. A small shake has less than twice the calories, at just 430. ALSO READ: These Are the Strangest Foods From Every State
  • Slide 15 of 25: > Chain: Dairy Queen > Calories: 980 Some 13 Dairy Queen shakes in all -- including the three on this list -- exceed 700 calories. The chain's trademark Blizzards, which are soft-serve ice cream with various cookies, candies, or brownies blended in, also frequently contain more than the limit.
  • Slide 16 of 25: > Chain: Jack in the Box > Calories: 1,170 This chain's "whipped topping" -- made with fully hydrogenated palm kernel oil, sugar, and a bunch of things that end in "-ate" -- is responsible for 110 calories of the 1,170. (An equivalent quantity of real whipped cream would come in slightly higher, at 124 calories.) ALSO READ: The Best Diner in Every State
  • Slide 17 of 25: > Chain: Jack in the Box > Calories: 1,150 Get a smaller version of this shake -- 16 ounces instead of 24 -- and it's a mere 800 calories.
  • Slide 18 of 25: > Chain: Jack in the Box > Calories: 1,120 Of the four varieties of shake on the Jack in the Box menu, each available in two sizes, the only one whose calorie count doesn't exceed 700 is the smaller Vanilla Shake with Whipped Topping -- and that's 700 calories exactly. ALSO READ: The Best Hot Dog Joint in Every State
  • Slide 19 of 25: > Chain: Shake Shack > Calories: 1,160 You know a chain with this name has got to be serious about shakes. Shake Shack lists 13 varieties (one size) on their nutritional chart, but only six on their menu. This is the biggest calorie bomb in both places.
  • Slide 20 of 25: > Chain: Shake Shack > Calories: 770 The only other shake on the Shake Shack menu besides this one that exceeds 700 calories is the plain chocolate version, at 750.
  • Slide 21 of 25: > Chain: Sonic Drive-In > Calories: 1,720 This is one of a special category Sonic calls Master Shakes -- which it describes as classic shakes "made even more indulgent with premium flavors and ingredients." Like all the chain's shakes, it's available in mini, small, medium, and large sizes. ALSO READ: 44 Discontinued Snack Foods We Really Miss
  • Slide 22 of 25: > Chain: Sonic Drive-In > Calories: 1,490 The absence of Oreos demotes this shake to the simple "classic" category, with a loss of 230 calories compared with its more masterful sibling.
  • Slide 23 of 25: > Chain: Sonic Drive-In > Calories: 1,230 Of Sonic's nearly 50 shakes in various sizes, more than two dozen exceed 700 calories, and 15 of those come in at 1,000 or more. ALSO READ: This Is the Best Local Sandwich to Try In Every State
  • Slide 24 of 25: > Chain: Steak 'n Shake > Calories: 820 Many of the offerings here involve mix-in ingredients like Oreos, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, M&Ms, and Heath, Snickers, and Kit Kat bars.
  • Slide 25 of 25: > Chain: Steak 'n Shake > Calories: 980 Some 21 Steak 'n Shake milkshakes (the three here included) exceed the 700 calorie mark. ALSO READ: Discontinued Chip Flavors That Should Come Back

Next Slide1 of 25© bhofack2 / Getty Images

Milkshakes have been around since at least the late 19th century — there was mention of an “an Atlanta drink” called “milk shake,” in the Atlanta Constitution in 1886. That prototype milkshake included just milk, crushed ice, “a mixture of unknown ingredients,” and “a bit of any desired sirup,” as the newspaper explained.” Eventually, people started using ice cream and cookies, creating a real caloric bomb, albeit an irresistibly delicious one.

Dieticians estimate Americans should break down their meal consumption throughout the day as follows: 300 to 400 calories for breakfast and 500 to 700 calories each for lunch and dinner, plus about 200 for snacks.

Most people are more likely to overeat rather than undereat, so 24/7 Tempo reviewed the menus of more than a dozen chain restaurants to compile a list of milkshakes that exceeded 700 calories. Calorie counts were taken either from the nutritional information provided by the chain on its website or from Nutrition Charts, a food nutrition data site.

Most places that make good shakes offer them in great variety, going beyond just the classic chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. Bits of cookie, candy, even cake get mixed into shakes, which significantly add to the total caloric amount.

Shakes became popular in the 1950s. They can still be found in just about every burger joint or diner in America — and this is the best diner in every state.

Many of the milkshakes at popular fast-food operations actually fall below the 700 number — but largely due to their size. If people order the mini or small version, they will most likely consume a drink with 400 to 700 calories. But who orders a mini shake?

Some shakes have calorie counts that not only exceed the standard for a single meal but come very close to the recommended intake for an entire day of about 2,000 calories. This is how long you need to exercise to burn off the calories from your favorite foods.

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