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Weight Watchers Foodies-what are you cooking his week? - (Old)

Ugh, I've had to cave and sign up for WW online to try and lose a little of this baby weight before our Christmas trip to Maui. I'm finding it challenging, both because I love things like bread and cheese and butter and cream and pastry and.... But also because it's a real pain in the ass to keep track of points when cooking at home, not relying on prepared foods. Ive seen the WW recipe thread, but am not necessarily looking for WW recipes, but for healthy recipes or snack ideas that my fellow-hounders have enjoyed.

Made the CI split pea soup this weekend, which was insanely good, and am going to try the million dollar chicken recipe tonight. (To make it more complicated, I'm also feeding my husband, who is working on losing weight, but swims a couple miles a day so can eat many times the calories I can, and three kids, all skinny, not super-picky, but still kids. In other words, as much as I'd love to eat sushi every day, it ain't gonna fly).

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  1. none of these suggestions are miraculous and unheard of but...

    roasted crispy kale with kosher salt or other seasonings

    egg white and skim milk frittata with roasted garlic, caramelized onions, and other roasted veggies for flavor

    breakfast melt - get some of those 1 point bagels; slice in half and scoop flesh (dog eat it?), sprinkle with a *little* low fat cheese and toast til golden; top with a couple of dollops of low-fat or fat free cottage cheese and some salsa

    Fish stew - start with onions and fennel in deep saucepan with spray, cook til softened and add veggie broth and/or water if too dry; add in chopped garlic, chopped tomatoes, lemon juice and zest, dash of white wine if it's open, fresh rosemary and parsley; let simmer. when veggies are stewed together, move them to one side of the pan, and add seasoned fish of choice (i like halibut and scallops); cook fish til almost done, then toss with veggies during it's final couple of minutes of cooking. adjust seasoning, sometimes i add more lemon, S & P, rosemary, parsley, etc.

    cauliflower soup - i've been on a kick... just roasted cauliflower, roasted garlic, caramelized onions, a little veggie broth in food processor/blender; and seasonings that strike me - sometimes salt pepper and parsley; sometimes a dash of cumin or dill... i also like to serve with one or two salmon croquette croutons that i make in mini muffin tins for bite-sized delights (canned skinless boneless salmon with diced cooked onion, egg (or just white), parsley and just enough almond meal, so the things don't fall apart... super tasty and light)

    Potato skins - give the flesh to the family in mashed form at dinner; save the skins - toast em and fill with veggies of choice.

    Microwave Roasted fruit - put cut up fruit in a micro safe dish; sprinkle with cinnamon and vanilla, and a little water at the bottom. nuke til soft. sprinkle with stevia or sweetener of choice.

    Eggplant Stackers - dip eggplant slices in egg white then in a combo of tvp, cornmeal and italian seasonings; lay on baking sheet, repeat with zucchini slices; then top with a layer of undipped tomato slices; bake til soft. add some parmesan at the end and broil if you feel like being decadent with your points.

    i could go on for eons... but sure others will chime in with wonderful suggestions...

    12 Replies
    1. re: Emme

      Emme, thank you so much! Love the idea of the cauliflower soup with the croquettes, and I've been contemplating r
      Kale chips lately.

      The million dollar chicken was pretty good, along with some roasted brussel sprouts.

      My goal is too eat food that I'd eat even if it wasn't low-cal, but I may be shooting too high. Hate the taste of artificial sweeteners, which makes it more difficult.

      I did discover the laughing cow cheese/rye crisp combo, which has made me much happier :)

      1. re: girlwonder88

        Hey! I was going to recommend the laughing cow cheese (35 calories per wedge) with Wasa Light crisp bread/cracker too! Three slices of that crisp bread are only 60 calories. Divide the wedge of cheese onto the three crisps, sprinkle with finely chopped chives or green onions - tastes good and feels like a treat, and all for under 100 calories.

        1. re: schmoopy

          Laughing cow cheese on the ww pita/hamburger round thingies with some sugar free jam. A fast and yummy 2 point breakfast.

          1. re: food face

            A friend travels with laughing cow cheese stuffed into celery sticks. Pretty tasty!

            1. re: food face

              Ooh...don't know about these pita things. Find them in a regular grocery store?

              1. re: girlwonder88

                They are not quite pita's though. I would describe them more like the thin hamburger buns that are at most supermarkets. But they taste like a thick style pita. 2 halves that make up 1 unit is 1 point. Definately the best ww bread I've had (especially when they are fresh). Also the most versatile. I use it for toast, burgers and sandwhiches. If you are in Canada, I have only seen them at Loblaws and Metro.

                1. re: food face

                  This sounds like the various types of Sandwich thins that are on the market. I believe Arnold, and Pepperridge Farm I think make some.

              2. re: food face

                I have found a sourdough french bakery bread that is 110 per 6in cut. Toast it up for sandwiches and so far staying away from cheese. But now I must find this cheese to add to it.

                1. re: chef chicklet

                  Laughing Cow light blue cheese wedges are remarkably good - actual blue cheesy taste! and Joseph's makes some very good low carb, high protein lavosh and pitas with flax, oatbran and whole wheat. Not sure what the point values are for those, however.

                  1. re: aggiecat

                    Their french onion one is pretty good too.

                    1. re: aggiecat

                      thank you, I'm checking these out today.

              3. re: girlwonder88

                almost forgot a few more favorites...

                big pot of ratatouille can add cooked chicken, feta, beans, whatever upon reheating.

                miso braised veggie stew with various greens, kale, bok choy, wild mushrooms. miso broth, garlic, onion, lemon juice, a dash of soy or bragg's to finish. tofu or streamed in egg whites for protein.

                make your own fruit sorbet

                oatmeal pancakes - quick cooking oats, egg whites, cinnamon, vanilla - make pancakes serve with low cal syrup or fruit preserves or fresh fruit

                egg white "crepes" - cook egg whites in a thin pancake, fill and fold with skim ricotta or cottage cheese with cinnamon and vanilla and fruits

                stuffed tomatoes - fill with a combo of cooked chopped onions, tvp, veggies and herbs and bake

                chili made beanless with tvp or lean ground meat

                stuffed cabbage leaves

                ceviche

                ...are you more of a sweets or savory girl?

            2. Here's a tip that served me well in my WW year - i lost 24 lbs., and most of it was on WW, with exercise, of course. I would eat a large bowl of steamed broccoli drizzled with a little olive oil, salt and pepper, before every dinner. I love broccoli so it was easy for me, but that would fill me up and is very low cal.

              I ate almost no prepared foods, but measured and weighed almost everything. I did not kill myself in measuring oils and fats, I would just be very careful with everything, and the most important thing I found was portion control. Weighing everything, while it may seem tiresome, really was key. Even if you are not following a WW recipe, weigh your proteins, your carbs. I also used small plates to eat out of. And again, I did not stress too much in following even WW recipes to the letter - i never used low fat mayo, or reduced calorie anything. Just made sure i ate small portions. Lunches out, I had a place near my office where they sold half paninis, so I would have half a sandwich. Summer time, i ate a lot of fruit. It may not be free points, but fruit is filling and it's always better to snack on then anything else (except veggies of course.) for example, I'd keep a bowl of raspberries when cooking to snack on.

              as for recipes, some of the WW recipes are actually very good, and satisfying. I was lucky in that my BF would make them for me - he'd weigh everything, measure everything, it was great.
              for instance, he'd make a sliced zucchini salad with basil, lemon juice, lemon zest, and a tsp. of olive oil, s&p. - really delicious! I'd have a big bowl of that and sometimes mix my broccoli in.
              Then he'd pound a chicken breast very thin and season it, then quick sear it in a very hot ridged grill pan with no oil or maybe a little Pam. He'd weigh it and my dinner would be about 7 pts.

              This was a recipe i loved: http://www.weightwatchers.com/food/rc...

              Tricks for the mornings: whole wheat english muffins or double fibre whole wheat bread is worth half the points other bread is. i'd toast up one, place a poached egg on top and drown it in salsa. or sometimes the same egg and salsa on a griddled corn tortilla (only one pt. for the tortilla). use a lot spices and hot sauces in your cooking and you'll be less likely to miss the other things you crave. Use whole wheat pasta when you can, it's also half the points.

              But, don't deprive yourself. if you want to have a piece of cheese, have it. just have one little piece. you will feel less resentful eating a small portion of something (and virtuous, which is totally motivating) then if you do without it completely. If i wanted butter on my double fibre bread, i'd have it!

              i love mexican food, so i'd often have one soft taco for lunch from a taqueria. or make our own! you can use so little protein in one of those, and load it up with tomatoes/peppers/cilantro/onions/hot sauce, and you don't need more meat.

              and tho i didn't use reduced calorie items on a regular basis, i did always have a store of reduced cal. laughing cow cheese on hand.

              You have to make it a plan you can live with, forever, if need be. (i never even counted alcohol. if i wanted a cocktail, i would have it.) i fall off periodically and then go back to the basics of portion control, small plates, not depriving myself of anything but just not eating a lot of it, and exercise. i'm there now, starting up again (i've probably gained 8 lbs. back, but it's been almost two years since i lost my weight.) and if i wanted to splurge and eat a full on meal out, i would not skimp on anything. i'd enjoy that meal and then get right back on the plan for the next meal. just try not to do that more than once a week. after awhile, you'll be able to splurge but eat less of the splurge, so you're still exercising portion control. No deprivation, good food is our friend!

              good luck, you can do it!!

              1 Reply
              1. re: mariacarmen

                Thanks so much for the tip on eating a bowl of steamed veggies before dinner.What a great idea!

              2. I have been on WW for the last 18 months and have lost 79 lbs (11 more to go!), almost completely without the consumption of "diet" foods (artificial sweeteners*, butter/oil substitutes, low-fat and low-cal processed foods, etc)...so it's definitely doable!

                My wife and I plan EVERYTHING. EVERY meal. We don't have kids, which I'm sure makes it easier, but for me this has been instrumental because I know what I'm going to eat ahead of time and can plan accordingly. It also means we don't buy foods we don't need for meals or snacks, so we don't have extra goodies in the house that can tempt us. Planning has been key, weighing/measuring almost everything, and portion control.

                Some favorites:

                Ham and White Bean Stew from Donald Link's recent cookbook Real Cajun. I've never been able to find this online anywhere but you might be able to find the cookbook in a local library (I did) if you don't want to buy it. The recipe has a lot of flavor from the ham and from low-calorie ingredients like rosemary, mustard, and jalapeno. I halve the amount of ham and I think it's something like 5 pts a serving, which is a reasonable lunch for me.

                Slow-Cooker Lentil Soup, one of the only WW recipes I have liked and made more than once. It's 4 pts a serving and is ridiculously easy. I usually add some extra herbs etc.
                http://www.weightwatchers.com/food/rc...

                I usually have steel-cut oats for breakfast, cooked with low-fat milk, dried fruit, vanilla and cinnamon. I add a tsp of Grade B maple syrup to each serving. 4 pts and filling.

                And I agree with mariacarmen -- don't deprive yourself! I have always used all of my 35 weekly points, usually to have treats or dinners out, and planning those treats into my weeks has kept me from straying the rest of the time.

                *I do drink diet soda sometimes.

                4 Replies
                1. re: stomachofsteel

                  oooh, i confess, i forgot - tho i don't know how i could - i do absolutely drink diet coke - i have long been addicted.

                    1. re: stomachofsteel

                      Wow! Nice job! And I will check out both of those soups (lentil soup is one of our favorites).

                      1. re: girlwonder88

                        Thanks. And I am checking out the split pea soup you posted below. We just made ham for a family dinner and have a bunch left over, including the bone.

                    2. oh god - thank you for bringing this up. I think I have to find the WW recipe thread on here and start following that more than the ones I have been. I haven't been to a meeting in I don't know how long - and ashamedly admit that I even pay monthly and still don't go! TWICE! Same for my husband! WW is a great way of life - the trick is to not stray far or long. I have to find my way back.

                      1. Here's a recipe for a healthy soup that's really delicious and very satisfying. It's also got a good amount of the "chew factor" that I find absent in so many low-point dishes. It's about 7 points per 12-ounce serving. I freeze it in 12-ounce containers. Also, if I can't find 95% fat-free ground beef, I spoon out the excess fat after the meat has browned. The homemade pasta sauce included in this recipe insures the quality of the ingredients. I make my sauce with a tablespoon of olive oil, onions, garlic, tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, crushed red pepper flakes and oregano.

                        Pasta E Fagioli
                        (Serves 8)

                        Ingredients

                        1 TB olive oil
                        1 medium onion, chopped
                        4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
                        1 pound ground beef (95% fat-free)
                        5 carrots, sliced ¼” thick
                        3 stalks of celery, chopped coarsely
                        1 can (15 ounces) petite diced tomatoes
                        1 can (15 ounces) red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
                        1 can (15 ounces) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
                        48 ounces fat-free chicken broth
                        1 TB dried thyme leaves
                        24-32 ounces homemade meatless pasta sauce
                        Crushed red pepper flakes
                        Parmesan cheese rinds (optional)
                        1 cup dry ditalini (small tube) pasta, or ¼ pound frozen tortellini

                        Directions
                        Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add onions and sauté until wilted. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add beef. Cook, breaking up, until no pink remains. Add carrots, celery, tomatoes, beans, broth, thyme, pasta sauce and cheese rinds (if using). Simmer, covered, until carrots are tender, about 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning and add salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes as desired. Add pasta* and cook until al dente.

                        *Note: If planning to freeze some of this recipe, add reduced amount of pasta only to the soup being served immediately.

                        (Optional) Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.