How Many Calories Are in an 8-Ounce Filet Mignon?

by Michelle Kerns

Cut from the tail end of a beef tenderloin, a filet mignon serving is small -- usually only up to 2 inches in diameter -- but the cut is at least 1 inch thick and prized for its extreme tenderness. Quick and easy to cook, filet mignon is best served with a flavor-packed sauce or pan juice. An 8-ounce serving of filet mignon exceeds the U.S. Department of Agriculture's serving size guidelines for lean meat. However, if you keep your portions within the recommended limits, filet mignon can be part of a healthy, balanced diet.

An 8-ounce serving of plain, cooked filet mignon contains 494 calories. For the average adult woman on a 2,000-calorie diet, that would supply nearly 25 percent of her recommended daily caloric intake. For a child between 9 and 13 years old, it would fulfill an average of 29 percent of the daily recommended calories. Although filet mignon has fewer calories per serving than other cuts of beef, it's a good idea to eat red meat only on occasion. In a study published in "Archives of Internal Medicine" in April 2012, red meat consumption was linked to a higher risk of dying from heart disease.

From an 8-ounce serving of cooked filet mignon, you'll get 25 grams of fat, or 225 calories from fat. From this amount, you'll get 9.8 grams of saturated fat, 10 grams of monounsaturated fat and 0.9 grams of polyunsaturated fat. Although mono- and polyunsaturated fats are linked to a lower risk of heart disease and stroke, the high amount of saturated fat in beef like filet mignon is a concern. You should get no more than 7 percent of your daily calories from saturated fat; eating 8 ounces of filet mignon supplies you with 65 percent of a day's saturated fat limit for an adult.

Filet mignon does not contain any carbohydrates, so the remainder of the calories in an 8-ounce serving -- about 52 percent of the total -- is provided by protein. Women should aim to consume 46 grams of protein each day, and children need between 19 to 52 grams per day depending on their age and gender; 8 ounces of filet mignon would supply over 100 percent of this requirement. A diet high in lean protein may help you lose weight, reported a study published in "The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" in July 2005, but the Harvard School of Public Health advises that it's healthier for you to get more of that protein from poultry, fish or plant sources like beans, seeds and nuts.

By reducing the serving size of filet mignon from 8 ounces to 3 ounces, you can significantly decrease the amount of calories you receive. A 3-ounce serving of filet mignon contains 185 calories, with only about 85 calories supplied by fat. A 3-ounce serving also contains less than 4.5 grams of saturated fat and under 95 milligrams of cholesterol, allowing it to be labeled a lean cut of beef, according to the USDA guidelines. The amount of protein in 3 ounces of filet mignon fulfills 51 percent of an adult woman's daily recommended intake.

About the Author

Michelle Kerns writes for a variety of print and online publications and specializes in literature and science topics. She has served as a book columnist since 2008 and is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. Kerns studied English literature and neurology at UC Davis.

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