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How Much Cholesterol in Chicken Breast
Chicken is one of the most consumed meat worldwide. There are hundreds of species and its massive consumption is associated with its easy and low-cost farming.
In addition, chickens not only yield meat, but they also yield many famous by-products such as eggs, blood, carcass, heart (famous in Brazilian cuisine), liver, and schmaltz (chicken fat traditional of the Jewish cuisine).
This massive industry moves roughly 46.3 billion dollars a year according to the last USDA update and in many countries, chicken consumption surpasses beef and pork. Besides being tasteful and nutritious, chicken can be used in many recipes with a variety of ingredients, being very easy to incorporate in your diet.
Follow me in this article for a closer look at the nutrition data of chicken, from how much cholesterol in chicken breast to a nutritional comparison between chicken breast and other types of meats.
Chicken Breast Nutrition Data
In order to start, let’s take a closer look at the chicken breast nutrition facts, According to the USDA database, in every 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of cooked chicken breast there are:
|Total lipid (fat)||3.57 g|
|Fatty acids, total Saturated fat||0.863 g|
|Fatty acids, total monosaturated||1.444 g|
|Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated||0.49 g|
|Fatty acids, total trans||0 g|
|Fiber, total dietary||0 g|
|Calcium, Ca||13 mg|
|Iron, Fe||0.51 mg|
|Sodium, Na||328 mg|
|Phosphorus, P||246 mg|
|Potassium, K||284 mg|
|Selenium, Se||23.1 ug|
|Vitamin A||5 ug|
Now, here is the tricky part, it is important to mention that these numbers apply only for the chicken breast without the skin, when consumed with the skin, the cholesterol amount, for instance, rises to 90 mg per 100 grams, while the calorie count and total lipid fat rise to 175 Kcal and 7.67 grams respectively, a significant increment.
Also, these numbers can be affected by the cooking method, nonetheless, they can give you a general idea on a cooked chicken breast nutritional aspect.
After checking the chart, you can see that chicken breast is relatively low in cholesterol, 86 grams in every 100 grams of meat, this is especially relevant when compared to other meats, we will see that more in-depth later in this article.
Chicken breast is also a great source of protein and it is loaded with calcium, phosphorus, and potassium. And that’s not all the good news, chicken breast is also considered lean meat, meaning that has low fat and calorie count, however, only if consumed skinless.
Cholesterol in Chicken Thighs
Now I believe you might be wondering, “does that mean that all chicken meat is considered lean meat?” Unfortunately the answer is no. Some chicken parts are pretty fatty, let´s take a closer look at the chicken thigh for example.
According to the USDA database, in every 100 grams or 3.5 ounces of chicken thigh there are 128 mg s of cholesterol. That is almost 33% more – yes, you read it right – a considerable increment. The same cholesterol amount is found in chicken wings, around 33% more than the amount of cholesterol in chicken breast.
So, if you are looking to decrease your cholesterol and fat consumption, you already know which chicken part should be on the top of your list. Chicken breast contain the same amount of protein with much less fat and cholesterol.
Cholesterol in Chicken Vs Beef
By now you might have asked yourself, “how are these numbers look compared to beef?” Let´s take a look at it.
According to the USDA database, 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of lean cut beef has approximately 90 mg of cholesterol, pretty similar when compared to a chicken breast. Fatty beef cuts such as short ribs, also have a considerably low amount of cholesterol, 94 mg per every 100 grams, much less than chicken thigh or wings for example.
The scenario changes, however, if we compare the amount of cholesterol in organ meat, for instance, beef liver has approximately 389 mg of cholesterol in every 100 grams, that is a whole other level of cholesterol.
How Much Cholesterol in Turkey?
Finally, as the year is coming to an end and it is very common in many traditions to celebrate it with turkey, let’s compare the amount of cholesterol in chicken breast with the amount of cholesterol found in turkey.
Again, according to the USDA database, in every 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of turkey, there are 109 mgs of cholesterol. This is 22% more than the amount of cholesterol found in the chicken breast, however, this number is still lower than the amount of cholesterol in both chicken thighs and wings.
So, if your family has the tradition of celebrating the holidays with turkey, eat it in moderation, especially if you are under a cholesterol control diet.
How Much Cholesterol in Chicken Breast + Pro Tip for Cooking Chicken Breasts
Some people tend to think that the chicken’s breast meat is dry and tasteless, however, this is simply not true. If well prepared, chicken breast can taste as good as chicken thigh or wings and provide you with the same amount of protein with fewer calories. You just need to cook it differently to make it delicious.
Here are some tips to take into account next time you prepare chicken breast:
- First step is brine, if you want to cook a breast chicken in the oven and conserve its juiciness you should brine it first. Add the chicken breast to a bowl filled with lukewarm water and salt, leave for fifteen minutes. Once ready, wash off the salt and pat dry with a paper towel.
- Second step, season it! Don’t be afraid to use condiments, and then brush the chicken breast with either olive oil or butter to help the seasoning stick.
- Third step, sear it in a very hot pan. This will help the say it juicy, if possible, use a cooking thermometer to check the temperature, it should reach around 450°F or 232°C.
So why don’t you try these tips next time?
How Much Cholesterol in Chicken Breast Conclusion
Chicken is the most commonly consumed poultry worldwide. It is an ingredient for many recipes, including traditional foods.
Besides being tasteful, chicken is also nutritious and for those of you who were wondering about how much cholesterol is in a chicken breast, the good news is that chicken breast is considered lean meat, it has low cholesterol and fat content in addition to being low in calories. So, what are you waiting to include chicken breast in your diet?