Yes, chefs can be generous with carbs, cream, pork fat and salt. Consider these three famously delicious dishes.

Babbo: Pappardelle Bolognese

At chef Mario Batali's Manhattan flagship, one serving of the fresh pasta, tossed in a lusty veal ragù with pancetta, clocks in at 940 calories; half the calories come from the thick-cut pasta itself.


Michael Mina Bellagio: Maine Lobster Potpie

At this Las Vegas restaurant, chef Michael Mina serves lobster and vegetables in a brandied cream sauce, then tops everything with buttery pastry. He uses a gallon of cream to make 10 potpies. Calories per pie: 1,420. Grams of fat: 109.


Momofuku Ssäm Bar: Bo Ssäm

Manhattan chef David Chang's whole slow-roasted pork butt, served family-style with raw oysters, rice, lettuce and condiments, derives most of its calories from protein. But it packs 1,040 calories per serving, with 2,360 mg of sodium (more than 13 small bags of potato chips).


—Matt Goulding, co-author of Eat This Not That! Restaurant Survival Guide

Shrimp-and-Smoked-Oyster Chowder
Credit: © John Kernick