Ridiculous Food Ads: Olive Garden Four Course Festa Italiana

Ridiculous Food Ads: Olive Garden Four Course Festa Italiana

So I’ve been getting some CRAZY email advertisements for food stuff.  In the vein of being healthy and avoiding these food traps, I’ll be outlining a few of these here on the blog.  I don’t know how regularly or how long I can do this series…but I want to share with you that these “great deals” they email about are not typically a good idea.

Now, I believe in “everything in moderation” so if you want a splurge, go for it. But, if you think you’re ordering one of these specials just because it’s a good price, then beware!

Let’s start with a special I got in my inbox yesterday: the Olive Garden Four Course Festa Italiana.

2015-01-19 12_06_45-NEW! Four Course Festa Italiana, starting at $13.99 - brittneydeanne@gmail.com -


For just $13.99, you get salad or soup, breadsticks, a small plate appetizer, a main course, and a dolcini dessert. Woah.  Seems like a good deal?  Well, if you split this with someone, it wouldn’t be too bad…but here’s the damage that $13.99 can do… (note: I chose dishes in the mid-calorie range for each category).

Let’s say you order the salad, risotto bites small plate, spaghetti with five cheese marinara for your entree, and a Amaretto tiramisu dolcini dessert.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • Salad with dressing: 140 calories (and that’s eating only one serving of their endless salad!)
  • 2 breadsticks: 140 calories each for 280 calories
  • Risotto bites: 340 calories
  • Spaghetti with five cheese marinara: 860 calories
  • Amaretto tiramisu dolcini dessert: 220 calories

For a whopping 1840 calories total!

If you add a drink, you will be over 2000 calories!


On the other hand, if you want to eat healthy at Olive Garden, here’s what I like to get:

  • Salad with low fat dressing (you can ask for this!): 90 calories
  • Roasted parmesan asparagus small bite: 80 calories
  • Citrus chicken sorrento: 390 calories
  • And if you want dessert, any of the dolcinis are under 300 calories

That comes in to 560 calories without dessert, so you could even eat a breadstick…or dessert if you want a treat!


So there you go… just be careful when you think you’re getting a good deal, you could be doing your diet a disservice!


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