Hamburger Helper, manufactured by General Mills, is a line of packaged pasta dishes that come with a variety of seasonings or sauces. Customers combine the ingredients in the box with browned hamburger meat, milk and water to make the meal. Although the specific nutrition facts depend on the specific Hamburger Helper product, many share similar nutritional values.
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The number of calories in the Hamburger Helper mix is different than the number of calories in the prepared meal. The Hamburger Helper mixes contain between 90 and 170 calories per serving. This typically includes 5 to 30 calories that come directly from fat. The calorie content of the prepared meals, on the other hand, ranges from 280 to 400 calories per serving. This typically includes 100 to 170 calories that come directly from fat.
Fat and Cholesterol
The Hamburger Helper mixes typically contain between 0.5 grams to 3 grams of total fat. The mixes do not contain any trans fat or cholesterol, but may have up to 1 g of saturated fat. Most of the prepared Hamburger Helper meals contain about 11 to 14 grams of total fat. The amount of saturated fat in the mix ranges from 4 g to 6 g, while the amount of trans fat ranges from 0.5 grams to 2 grams. The prepared Hamburger Helper meal may contain 55 to 60 milligrams of cholesterol.
Hamburger Helper contains a significant amount of sodium. The mixes may contain 580 to 810 milligrams of sodium per serving, while the prepared meals can contain up to 990 milligrams per serving. Most adults should limit their daily intake of sodium to about 1,500 milligrams, suggests the American Heart Association.
Most of the Hamburger Helper mixes have between 21 to 36 grams of total carbohydrates. This may include up to 2 grams of fiber and up to 6 grams of sugar. The total amount of carbohydrates in the prepared Hamburger Helper meal is slightly more, ranging from 23 to 38 grams. The prepared meals do not contain any additional fiber, but usually have an additional 1 to 2 grams of sugar.
The Hamburger Helper mixes each contain a small amount of protein. Most mixes provide 2 to 4 grams of protein per serving. The prepared Hamburger Helper meals, with the addition of meat, contain significant amounts of protein. Most contain between 20 to 22 grams of protein per serving.
Deviating from the preparation instructions may result in very different nutrition fact amounts for the prepared Hamburger Helper meals. This includes using a different kind of milk, using ground turkey instead of ground beef or not using the appropriate amounts of ingredients. In addition, those with food allergies should be aware that Hamburger Helper products may contain wheat, eggs, soy and milk ingredients. Those with allergies to these ingredients should avoid Hamburger Helper products.