Can You Eat Firehouse Subs When Pregnant? [Doctor Approved]

Verified by Dr. Patricia Shelton
Verified by Dr. Patricia Shelton

Dr. Patricia Shelton, MD, holds a Doctor of Medicine degree and a bachelor's degree in neuroscience, both from the University of Washington in Seattle. 

Eating out is a common occurrence for pregnant women.

Some studies found that nearly 60% of pregnant women in the United States ate at least one meal away from home per day.
But when it comes to eating at restaurants while pregnant, some places are better than others.

Let’s talk about one of our all-time favorites – Firehouse Subs. Is the food there safe for pregnant women?

Can you eat firehouse subs when pregnant?

The short answer is no. Firehouse subs are known for their delicious, hearty sandwiches containing deli meats like ham and bacon. Unfortunately, you have to avoid deli meat at Firehouse Subs during pregnancy. Medical professionals advise pregnant women to avoid deli meats unless they are heated to an internal temperature of 165℉. It is because deli meats often contain listeria, a type of bacteria that can cause food poisoning.

Listeria can be specifically dangerous for pregnant women because it may lead to a serious infection that can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, or premature delivery.

Moreover, Listeria infection can be passed on to the baby, which could affect their blood or brain.

More importantly, deli meats can also contain high levels of sodium, which is generally not good for you or your baby.

So, while Firehouse Subs may be one of your favorite places to eat, it’s best to avoid it during pregnancy.

Besides that, Firehouse Subs’s food is safe for pregnant women as the restaurant uses high-quality ingredients.

You can always have Firehouse Subs Salad with either grilled chicken or a vegetarian option and the soup of the day. The servers are usually happy to modify sandwiches to make them safer for pregnant women.

Does Firehouse cook their meat?

Firehouse Subs do not cook their meat. All of their meats are steamed, though. They are proud of this process because it allows the natural flavors of the meats to shine through.

If your cravings are intense, take the Turkey Breast & Provolone sandwich, hold the mayo, and ask them to heat up the meat.

Is there an alternative to Firehouse Subs?

For a safer alternative to Firehouse Subs during pregnancy, try these restaurants instead:

  • Chick-fil-A with their variety of salads, wraps, and fruit bowls.
  • Subway, where you can get a veggie delight sandwich or a salad with chicken on it. Just hold the mayo and cheese.
  • Panera Bread has a variety of soups, fresh salads and sandwiches made of deli meat that has been heated to 165℉.
  • Papa John’s with their several vegetarian pizzas and healthy toppings.

Nutritional needs of a pregnant woman

If you are pregnant, it is important to understand the unique nutritional needs of a pregnant woman to support the growth and development of the fetus. A balanced diet is essential to ensure that both you and the fetus receive the necessary nutrients.

During pregnancy, your body undergoes significant changes, and it requires more nutrients to support the development of the fetus. 

The nutrients required include folic acid, iron, calcium, vitamin D, and protein. 

Let’s explore each one in a bit more detail. 

Folic acid is necessary to prevent birth defects, and it is recommended that pregnant women take a supplement of at least 400 micrograms daily. Foods rich in folic acid include leafy green vegetables, citrus fruits, and fortified cereals.

Iron is essential for the production of red blood cells, and pregnant women require more iron to support the growing fetus. Foods rich in iron include red meat, poultry, fish, beans, and fortified cereals.

Calcium is necessary for the development of bones and teeth in the fetus. Pregnant women require 1,000 milligrams of calcium daily. Foods rich in calcium include dairy products, leafy green vegetables, and fortified orange juice.

Vitamin D is essential for the absorption of calcium and the development of bones in the fetus. It is recommended that pregnant women take a supplement of 600-800 IU daily. Foods rich in vitamin D include fortified milk and cereals, fatty fish, and egg yolks.

Protein is very important for the development of the fetus, and pregnant women require an additional 25 grams of protein daily. Foods rich in protein include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, and nuts.

It is important to note that pregnant women should avoid certain foods that can be harmful to the fetus. These include raw or undercooked meat, fish, and eggs, unpasteurized dairy products, and certain types of fish that are high in mercury.

Additionally, pregnant women should limit their consumption of caffeine and avoid alcohol entirely.


So, can you eat Firehouse Subs when pregnant? No, not if you want to avoid deli meat. You can be facing some risks like food poisoning or premature delivery.

However, you can ask them to heat the meat to make it safer. If you’re looking for a safe alternative to Firehouse Subs during pregnancy, try Chick-fil-A, Subway, Panera Bread, or Papa John’s.

Be sure to check with your doctor or healthcare provider before eating out while pregnant.