These are the surprisingly unhealthy high street breakfasts from Pret a Manger, Costa Coffee, Starbucks and Eat

Francesca Washtell
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Not all of Pret a Manger's offerings are as healthy as they seem (Source: Getty)

If you didn't have time to eat breakfast at home this morning, chances are you nipped into a Pret a Manger or Starbucks in the way to work for a last-minute snack.

But the illusion that high street coffee and food outlets are healthy has been knocked upside the head by new research from health website and GP Dr Wayne Osborne.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, affordable pub favourite JD Wetherspoon topped the list of 11 venues surveyed as having the most calorific breakfast, with its large breakfast boasting a quite eye-watering 1,531 calories (75 per cent of a woman's daily intake and around 60 per cent of a man's, if you're wondering).

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But the most calorific items at Costa Coffee, Pret a Manger, Starbucks, Eat and Caffe Nero were each over a fifth of a woman's and almost a sixth of a man's daily intake.

Chain and Breakfast Kcal count
JD Wetherspoon - Large breakfast 1,531
Harvester - The ultimate breakfast bap 1,307
Wimpy - All day breakfast 900
McDonald's - Pancakes and sausage with syrup 664
Greggs - Bacon and sausage baguette 617
Burger King - Sausage croissan'wich 600
Costa Coffee - All day breakfast bloomer toastie 564
Pret a Manger - Sausage and egg brioche 546
Starbucks - Almond croissant 503
Caffe Nero - All day breakfast panini 480
Eat - Bacon, egg, avocado and chipotle ketchup roll 444

(Note: Burger King's 810 kcal breakfast platter included as it is not available at all venues)

The researchers considered all items appearing on breakfast menus where one was available, muffins and croissants from all chains as breakfast items and, if no specified morning menu was available, any items with the word breakfast in the title were considered.

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Dr Osborne said:

The most calorific breakfast options on offer at what we might perceive as "higher end" outlets such as Costa and Pret a Manger are closer in calorie value than many might suspect to those available at McDonald’s and Burger King.

In fact there’s less than 120 calories between 4th placed McDonald’s item and 8th placed Pret a Manger’s item, with Greggs, Burger King and Costa in between.

When it came to a salt comparison between high street venues, Pret's bacon and egg brioche had 4.3g of salt, the fifth highest behind Wetherspoon's Harvester, Wimpy and Gregg's.

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In terms of sugar content, Starbucks' lemon and poppyseed muffin - with 42.8g of total sugars - came in fifth place and was just ahead of Costa Coffee's triple chocolate muffin (40.9g) and Pret's double berry muffin (39.9g).