A Sunday roast, also known as a "roast dinner," is a typical British meal that is made on Sundays — obviously! Roast dinner calories can vary quite a bit; here's what you need to know.
The exact number of roast dinner calories depends on which dishes you make, how you make them and what portion sizes you eat.
What Is a Sunday Roast?
The British Council explains that a Sunday roast usually consists of a roasted meat dish, served along with roasted potatoes, boiled vegetables, sauces, gravy and pudding.
The meat is usually either roasted turkey or roasted ham, however it could also be beef, pork or chicken. The boiled vegetables are typically either peas or carrots, however parsnips and Brussels sprouts are also sometimes added to the meal. The gravy is made by adding a little wine and flour to the juices of the meat. It is supposed to be poured over the meat, however, more often than not it is poured over the entire meal.
Sauces are added to give the meal a touch of flavor. Chicken and turkey are usually served with bread sauce, lamb is paired with mint sauce, pork is eaten with applesauce and beef is usually accompanied by horseradish sauce.
Dessert, also known as "pudding," is usually a sticky toffee pudding, a bread and butter pudding or an apple crumble served with custard.
Roast Dinner Calories
Given that Sunday roast is an umbrella term that encompasses a number of different dishes, it can be hard to judge exactly how many calories it has. Even the way each dish is prepared can affect the roast dinner's calories.
However, here are a few standard references for many of the dishes in a roast dinner. This list should give you a rough idea of how many calories each serving has, so that you can estimate the calories in your meal and make healthy food choices.
- Roasted ham: 232 calories per 3-ounce serving
- Roasted turkey: 161 calories per 3-ounce serving
- Roasted chicken: 190 calories per 3-ounce serving
- Roasted beef: 141.9 calories per 3-ounce serving
- Roasted lamb: 225.3 calories per 3-ounce serving
- Roasted potatoes: 164 calories per small potato
- Boiled peas: 134 calories per cup
- Boiled carrots: 54.6 calories per cup
- Roasted parsnips: 140 calories per cup
- Brussels sprouts: 89.6 calories per cup
- Gravy: 247 calories per cup
- Bread sauce: 113 calories per serving
- Mint sauce: 8 calories per 100 milliliters
- Applesauce: 44 calories per 100 grams
- Horseradish sauce: 503 calories per 100 grams
- Sticky toffee pudding: 567 calories per serving
- Bread pudding: 308 calories per cup
- Apple crumble: 360 calories per 4-ounce serving
- Custard: 229 calories per cup
With an elaborate feast laid out before you, it can sometimes be hard to control your appetite. A March 2017 study published in the journal Current Obesity Reports concluded that large portion sizes can cause you to overeat.
One way to control your portion size is to use a smaller-sized plate. A September 2017 study published in the journal Obesity Science & Practice found that this habit can help you reduce your food intake and increase satiety.
- British Council: “A Traditional Sunday Lunch. Yum!”
- Obesity Science & Practice: “How Does Plate Size Affect Estimated Satiation and Intake for Individuals in Normal‐Weight and Overweight Groups?”
- Current Obesity Reports: “Portion Size: Latest Developments and Interventions”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Pork, Fresh, Leg (Ham), Whole, Separable Lean and Fat, Cooked, Roasted”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Turkey, Whole, Meat and Skin, Cooked, Roasted”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Chicken, Roasting, Meat and Skin, Cooked, Roasted”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Beef, Roast, Roasted, NS as to Fat Eaten”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Lamb, Roast, Cooked, Lean and Fat Eaten”
- USDA FoodData Central: “White Potato, Roasted, NS as to Fat Added in Cooking”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Peas, Green, Cooked, Boiled, Drained, With Salt”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Carrots, Cooked, Boiled, Drained, With Salt”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Parsnips, Cooked, Fat Added in Cooking, NS as to Type of Fat”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Brussels Sprouts, Cooked, From Fresh, Made With Butter”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Gravy, Beef or Meat, Home Recipe”
- Diabetes UK: “Bread Sauce”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Mint Sauce”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Applesauce”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Horseradish Sauce”
- Sainsbury’s Magazine: “Self-Saucing Sticky Toffee Pudding”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Apple Crumble”
- USDA FoodData Central: “Custard”
- USDA: "Pudding, Bread"