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Hungry Girl Show on the Cooking Channel

I have mixed feeling about the Hungry Girl enterprise but overall I think it provides people with healthier options to their favorite foods and some good shopping tips. Yes. there are some who say she uses too many processed food but that is another topic.

I've seen Lisa aka Hungry Girl on many segments on various shows and have read her newsletters for quite a few years now. Her recipes are a mixed bag but usually are pretty good. However, her new show on the Cooking Channel is terrible. She really annoys me and is no unnatural on the show. She is repeating her most basic recipes/tips. I know there is supposedly a new audience, but I can't imagine a foodie tuning in unless they are already aware of HG.

Has anyone else seen these past few new episodes? Thoughts?

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  1. I wasn't familiar with Hungry Girl before seeing this show for the first (and likely last) time yesterday. I agree with you; she was completely unnatural. The "recipes" ridiculously simple. And I didn't get the sense that she was pushing a particularly healthy way of eating. She seemed to focus in on very low-fat, low-cal recipes, which is not in my mind healthy. Fat is good for you. Really folks, it is. Your body needs it. It's okay to toss your kale in a bit of olive oil rather than giving it a half second spray of Pam.

    And don't get me started on the two ingredient (chocolate cake mix and pumpkin puree) brownee muffins.

    6 Replies
    1. re: debbiel

      I hope this is not too off-topic, but your kale comment reminds me of a conversation we had in my Weight Watchers group a while back. WW recommends that you consume 2 servings (teaspoons) of healthy oils (olive, safflower, etc) per day. More than half of the group members were complaining that they couldn't figure out how to fit those servings of oil into their diets each day. In the meantime, I was wondering how on earth they were cooking their vegetables -- were they really steaming everything? (At my house, we roast most veg in olive oil, or else saute it in a bit of olive oil...either way, not having trouble getting in my olive oil!)

      But that seems to be the HG way, and for a lot of folks it's also been the WW way (though it doesn't need to be): eat low-fat/fat-free/sugar-free versions of everything so that you can eat more of it. In my opinion, taste suffers. I've subscribed to her emails at the suggestion of friends, but I can't stand them and have never felt inclined to try any of her recipes. Looks like the show is more of the same.

      1. re: stomachofsteel

        "eat low-fat/fat-free/sugar-free versions of everything so that you can eat more of it. In my opinion, taste suffers."

        This is exactly why I said it was the opposite of what CH is about. I'd so much rather eat a smaller amount of real food than more of the fake stuff--fat free, sugar free pudding? Is that really food?

        1. re: stomachofsteel

          I've done WW too and heard the same issues. How on EARTH can you get in two teaspoons of oil! Goodness. It's as if we all think oil carries some sort of deadly virus. Meanwhile, when I was doing core, as a vegetarian, I allowed myself 2 TABLEspoons of olive oil per day without counting points for them. I needed them (skin, general sense of well being). And I lost 35 pounds doing it.

          1. re: debbiel

            My WW leader recommended ripping up one of those sandwich thins and dipping it into 2 tsp of oil. Aside from the fact that I don't like the sandwich thins enough to even eat them on sandwiches, let alone by themselves, I just couldn't fathom why it wouldn't be easier to work the oil into what you were already cooking. And then it dawned on me -- if you're not cooking, you can't work the oil into it!

            HG does cook, in a fashion, but exclusively (or almost exclusively?) with cooking spray.

        2. re: debbiel

          the brownie/pumpkin recipe is actually pretty good!

          but the show as a whole is kind of boring and unnatural. What bothers me most is her perfect french manicure-- no one I know who actually cooks has such nice, long nails.

          1. re: cheesecake17

            Today I watched an episode of "Comfort Foods" and she gave suggestions on how to cut calories and of course, fat.
            She made chili with turkey and tiny pinches of spices, and each time she pinched into the spices, I yucked at her fingernails digging in.

        3. She's the anti-thesis of CH. How to pretend to be eating "food" to stay thin.

          1. Maybe she needs to get some tips on screen presence from her husband, Dan Schneider, formerly a child star, now producer of hit Nickelodeon shows like iCarly & Victorious. Might help...

            1 Reply
            1. re: cmvan

              and it's a family affair!

              HG left me well, hungry. Not sure that she appeals to my generation but I bet there is a bunch of iCarly pals.

            2. she does remake many high calorie dishes to lower the fat and calories but relies too much on processed foods which increases the sodium level and may not make the dish really healthier.

              1. Blech. My mother in law bought her cookbook and I was leafing through it...all she does is mix various fat free/sugar free/taste free/chemical laden item with other fat free/sugar free/taste free/chemical laden items. She's like a lower fat version of Sandra Lee. No thanks! I'd rather eat a smaller portion of something that is actually good for me and doesn't come from a package.

                3 Replies
                1. re: italia84

                  Exactly--it's not even real food anymore.

                  1. re: italia84

                    She's like a lower fat version of Sandra Lee.

                    What a great description - and why I've never cared for HG, even though I (1) am watching my weight and (2) voraciously read food blogs.

                    1. I get her Hungry Girl newsletter in my webmail and rarely read it. The best thing about her is that she really pushes Laughing Cow cheese--I love that stuff. However..and a big however--I did not like her show at all. I happened to catch her show over the weekend and she was making chocolate desserts. The looked horrific. She made this glop in a mug and the presentation was disgusting. The mug was dirtied from the chocolate that had dripped down. I don't wanna see that on TV. Her personality was just--forced. I don't think she is very comfortable on tv. Oh...and I second the thing about her perfect nails.

                      1. It's not that bad of a show. Don't get me wrong, it's not the food that I want to eat in my house, but I'm not dieting either.

                        I think that most people on a diet don't care about general health. They want to lose weight. And the only way to lose weight is to eat fewer calories than you expend. So for people who are not very good at cooking or are rather uncreative, the show teaches them some very easy recipes to potentially satisfy a craving at home rather than trying to repress it, eventually losing the battle, and running out to the store. And if it's really easy to make, then it means the dieter is more likely to comply.

                        So I see the niche. It's one part diet food and one part Sandra Lee.

                        1. I"ve watched the show a few times and really want to like it, but her food subs rely on HFCS, sugar and salt. FF half and half is disgusting and she thinks it's the greatest thing.
                          Does she or has she EVER used evoo?
                          The lack of fat in her food is alarming

                          1. And what is with her jabbing and stabbing her food with her left hand. It looks like me when my right arm was in a cast!