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Sep 16, 2009 09:26 AM

Your Lowest Calorie Recipes?

Hi, I'm looking for some tasty yet extremely low-cal recipes and calorie saving tips?

Any ideas or suggestions?

Thanks in advance!

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  1. a glass of water. ;)

    steamed high-fiber veggies, like broccoli, brussel sprouts and cauliflower, pack a lot of volume and very few calories.

    lettuce and celery ditto. unfortunately without a little added fat or protein, you'll only feel full for a short time. poached or steamed fish can help out there.

    homemade chicken soup with no starch is healthy and filling.

    i don't do fake or processed foods, so can't recommend any lo-cal products. i've been eating low-carb for not quite a month and have lost weight and have never felt better.


    2 Replies
    1. re: hotoynoodle

      Thanks for the feedback. I should clarify that I'm not looking for lo-cal products or anything like that. I cook most stuff from scratch.

      I like using a lot of spices and herbs to pack in flavour so any ethnic ideas or recipes are encouraged.

      1. re: hotoynoodle

        curried lentil soups and pumpkin soups with kale or spinach and just a small hit of coconut milk. this is more or less balanced. it helped me fend off some "winter coat" last year.

        use things with concentrated flavors, make your own sauces and paste (curry, pesto, chili paste, etc). whitebean soup with lean sausage (or meat of choice), top with veggies or greens and add a spoonful of pesto.

        you can look for noodle substitutes in the tofu section in your local asian market, it is nearly 0 calories, yam or tofu. serve in soupy miso broth with lots of veggies.

        eat things in endive or lettuce cups, tuna salad (minimal mayo), hummus, stirfriend chopped veggies with tofu/shrimp, low on oil, use a spicy/sweet chutney to keep it interesting.

        make your own hummus with more water instead of oil (just a bit though). eat with radishes, celery, carrots, endive and things.

        i've heard ppl made guac with asparagus or edamme- it should work well as a snack/lunch.

        i wouldn't go too low on calories because i get hungry very easily. concentrate on veggies, beans and lean meats. i go into pouts of diet phases and i have to say, i don't like salads that much anymore.. =)

      2. Hi, Jamesm,

        I make a delicious broccoli slaw and I love to have a big bowl of it in the fridge for whenever sugar cravings hit... Here's a link to the recipe:

        And you can leave out the olive oil for even fewer calories. Enjoy!

        2 Replies
        1. re: TheZaftigLife

          That sounds awesome and I love broccoli. Thanks for sharing.

          1. re: TheZaftigLife

            That slaw looks delish - and I have 1/2 bag of broccoli slaw in the fridge that's beggin' to be used.


          2. I use lots of herbs and spices and lemon and lime to flavor food without adding too many calories. Rosemary, basil, oregano, mint, ginger, smoked paprika are among my staples. A huge thing that helps so much (for me anyway) is staying away from sauces... they usually have too many calories per serving to be worth it and too much sodium and sugar.

            Chicken tastes great with s&p, lime, cilantro, basil and some chopped jalepeno and this amazing stuff from WF called Santa Maria seasoning. Salmon I like with ginger and this great 21 seasoning salute from TJ's and a sqeeze of lime and lemon with s&p. Olive oil with s&p and rosemary is great on meats too. Veggies (esp spinach, broccoli or aspargus) taste great with some olive oil and garlic and/or onion. TJ's has olive oil spray that you can cook with. One spray goes a long way, is low cal and you can really keep track of calories too.

            Salads are tasty with some pressed garlic, olive oil and a squeeze of lemon. Quinoa with oinions, bell peppers and basil is good. Brown rice with 1/2 chk stock 1/2 water is good with broccoli mixed in.

            Cinnamon is good too! On sliced apples or in plain oatmeal... anytime you want something sweet.

            Try to stay away from liquid calories i.e. juices, alcohol, soda. Drink lots of water and if you like flavorings use lemon/lime in plain or sparkling water.

            I can expand on any of these if you're interested. This is my normal diet and I love it and it feels great! Good luck!

            4 Replies
            1. re: Yes Please

              one of those sounded like a modified risotto! I'm always curious how good/bad risotto is for me, because I love to cook it, although I tend to use arborio rice, which probably isn't idea...

              1. re: mc22

                There are a lot of things worse than risotto for you! The only downfalls I see are it being unbalanced (if you are eating it as a meal, not enough protein to starch ratio usually), the use of white rice (which like I said could be worse!), and if there is too much cream, salt or cheese.

                PS This is the first I've ever heard of anyone loving to cook risotto!! I always thought traditional risotto was a pretty big pain!

              2. re: Yes Please

                These are all great tips. Thanks for sharing.

                1. re: jamesm

                  you can try to make risotto with farro or othergrains =)

              3. Zero Point Weight Watchers Cabbage Soup

                • 3 cups nonfat beef broth or nonfat vegetable broth or nonfat chicken broth(beef is the best)
                • 2 garlic cloves, minced
                • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
                • 2 cups chopped cabbage
                • 1/2 yellow onion
                • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
                • 1/2 cup green beans
                • 1/2 cup chopped zucchini
                • 1/2 teaspoon basil
                • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
                • salt & pepper
                *Spray pot with non stick cooking spray saute onions carrots and garlic for 5 minutes.
                *Add broth, Tomato paste, cabbage, green beans, basil, oregano and Salt & Pepper to taste.
                *Simmer for a about 5-10 minutes until all vegetables are tender then add the zucchini and simmer for another 5 or so minutes.
                *different variations. Leaving out green beans. Adding chopped green onions in addition to the yellow onion.

                1 Reply
                1. re: laliz

                  Love cabbage so I'll give that one a whirl.

                  Last night I made something delicious, filling and according to my calculations came in at about 200-250 calories per serving.

                  Sauteed onions and garlic.
                  Added some toasted cumin and fennel seeds that were roughly cracked
                  Good quality, low sodium chicken broth
                  a quarter cup of de puy lentils
                  Simmered for 30 minutes or so then added a some diced carrot
                  About a table spoon of harrissa
                  Finished with some fresh squeezed lemon juice and parsley.

                  The harrissa gave it a nice spice and some heat while the carrots and lentils provided a great texture and the toasted spices lent some depth and nuance with some brightness coming from the lemon and parsley. Would definitely make this again.

                  I'd also just like to vainly add I'm not trying to lose weight. My girlfriend and I indulge in dining out frequently and due to our schedules we often eat dinner relatively late so sometimes it's nice to have some super low-cal options to balance out our intake throughout the week. Also, sometimes I just feel like something really light. It's kind of a weird craving.

                2. This fruity salad with chicken is tasty, easy, and low calorie:


                  This sesame chicken is a little spicy and low on calories:


                  This steamed cod recipe is super low-cal and very tasty:


                  This slow-cooker vegetarian casserole is low-cal and a great way to get more veggies into your diet: