Sample Menus for a 1,700 Low-Calorie Diet

Eating a salad with lots of veggies will help you stick with your low-calorie diet.
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Changing your diet and cutting calories usually aren't easy unless you have a solid plan, including daily meal plans and a complete shopping list. A few kitchen tools also come in handy, such as measuring cups, measuring spoons, and a kitchen scale, which you can use to measure portions until you get used to estimating serving sizes.

It's always a good idea to speak with your healthcare provider before making any major changes to your current diet. This is especially true if you have any health conditions or concerns.

Plan Ahead

Start by planning your meals and snacks for a few days or maybe a week, depending on how often you go grocery shopping. Compile a shopping list with the ingredients for all of your meals so you can stock your kitchen with the foods you need. Buy the foods that fit your meal plans and avoid the high-calorie foods and treats that can derail your effort. 

Pack your lunch if you work or go to school, so you can control what you eat. If you do dine at a restaurant, choose a salad (go easy on the dressing and other high-calorie toppings) or opt for vegetable soup.

To plan low-calorie meals, you'll need to know how many calories are in the foods you eat. There are many diet and nutrition apps that can help. It's also important to choose nutrient-dense foods. Since you're cutting calories, you'll need to make every calorie count. High-fiber, low-calorie fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat protein sources should make up most of your daily menu. 

Meal planning isn't all that hard, but it can take a little practice, so here are two 1,700-calorie menu examples to get you started. There are also menus available for 1,200 calorie per day and 1,500 calorie per day eating plans, which may be helpful depending on your calorie needs and intake goals.

1,701-Calorie Meal Plan

This plan contains no non-nutritive sweeteners, but you can add them if you wish.

Breakfast

  • Two eggs, scrambled
  • One slice 100% whole-grain toast with one tablespoon 100% fruit spread
  • One cup 100% apple juice

Lunch

  • Chicken wrap: One whole grain tortilla, one-half cup chopped chicken, three tomato slices, one tablespoon light mayonnaise, lots of lettuce, and one ounce shredded light cheese
  • One cup non-fat milk

Dinner

  • One three-ounce sirloin steak
  • One cup cooked green beans
  • One medium sweet potato, baked
  • One small glass red wine

Snacks

  • Several glasses of water
  • Three-fourths cup plain yogurt with one tablespoon honey
  • One-half cup raw carrots
  • 14 walnut halves
  • One cup 100% grapefruit juice

Nutrition Information

  • Calories: 1701
  • Fat: 58g (29.6%)
  • Saturated fat: 13g
  • Protein: 106g (24.3%)
  • Carbohydrates: 183g (41.8%)
  • Sodium: 1326mg
  • Sugar: 118g
  • Cholesterol: 551mg
  • Fiber: 26g

1,705-Calorie Menu

This menu contains non-nutritive sweeteners, which you can eliminate if you choose (don't substitute sugar or other sweeteners, like honey, or you will add calories).

Breakfast

  • One slice 100% whole-grain toast with one tablespoon peanut butter
  • One-half grapefruit with one packet sucralose or stevia sweetener
  • One cup non-fat milk

Lunch

  • Salad: Two cups mixed greens, one-half can artichoke hearts, six cucumber slices, three ounces cooked shrimp, one-half cup cherry tomatoes, and two tablespoons balsamic vinegar as a dressing
  • One small 100% whole-grain dinner roll
  • Diet soda

Dinner

  • Burrito: One-half cup cooked chopped chicken, one-ounce low-fat shredded cheddar cheese, three tablespoons salsa, one tablespoon fat-free sour cream, and lettuce
  • One-half cup brown rice 
  • One-half cup black beans
  • One small glass white wine

Snacks

  • Two cups air-popped popcorn (no butter)
  • One-half cup raw carrots
  • One serving low-fat, sugar-free, fruit-flavored yogurt
  • One orange
  • One apple with ten almonds
  • Several glasses of water with slices of lemon or lime

Nutrition Information

  • Calories: 1705
  • Fat: 37g (19.6%)
  • Saturated fat: 9g
  • Protein: 97g (22.7%)
  • Carbohydrates: 227g (53.3%)
  • Sodium: 1717mg
  • Sugar: 78g
  • Cholesterol: 260mg
  • Fiber: 39g

A Word From Verywell

As these menus show, it is possible to plan meals that are low in calories but still provide nutrients and energy. However, everyone's needs are different. Use a calorie calculator to determine a daily calorie total that's healthy for you and will help you meet your goals.

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Article Sources
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