Posts Tagged ‘ healthy ’

Blast from the Past: SpaghettiO’s

Oh the foods of our youth. Growing up, one of those was Spaghetti-O’s, a staple of the daycare I went to as a young-un. Well, recently, Campbell’s latest marketing campaign has been about not telling kids that the pasta rings in tomato goop is actually good for them. I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t check this out right?

Well, cue a trip to my grocery store with my trusty Weight Watcher’s slide rule, and me hunching down in the aisle as mom’s shovel the cans into carriages for a look-see.

Looking into it, each can has 2 servings, but I combined the nutrition as I polish off a can myself. For sheer points, I looked at a can of the “Plus Calcium” because why not? More calcium? Sure! Nutritionally we’re talking 340 calories, 2g of fat, and 6 g of fiber per can giving us a point value of 6. Not too bad at all for a 66 cent price point.

What’s more amazing is what else these can’s have to offer. With my workout, I’m always looking to add more protein to my diet. These cans are packing a whopping 12 g per pop, not to mention 60% of my daily calcium, and 50% of vitamin D as well as other basic vitamins and minerals. This stuff is good…for you.

Well, I’ll be the first to admit it folks, as an adult, Spaghetti-O’s have become my staple go-to quick meal when I don’t have much time to cook dinner. I serve them up with a chopped up 98% Fat Free turkey dog, and some green beans and I am good to go. Freakishly nutritious, and childishly delicious. Hey, whatever works right?


Review: Smart Ones Pasta with Ricotta and Spinach

So, those of us in the diet world are all to aware of what waits for us in the frozen food section of the grocery store. Moving past the temptation that is the ice cream, and dessert section, we fall upon the frozen foods. Here we can focus on our three pillars: Lean Cuisine, Smart Ones, and Healthy Choice (I’m sure there are other options, but these are what stare me in the face).

Over my years of dieting, I have learned one main rule of diet frozen food: sometimes it is good, and sometimes it is very very bad, and it has nothing to do with what the “intended” meal was. It’s just the way it goes, as some things lend themselves more easily to diet-ising. Some of my favorites are the Simple mac and cheese, or pasta with meat sauce. Salisbury steak is to be avoided at all costs. And still, that’s just my preference.

Anyways, Sunday night saw me trying to end the weekend on a positive note, so I was looking for cheap, easy, and healthy. Hello Smart Ones. Well, I say the “new” flavor, and said why not. It’s hard to go wrong with pasta and cheese.  Talk about luck, we have a winner folks.

This new frozen meal is awesome. The pasta in it was made up of hardy ribbons that oozed the surprisingly tasty and filling white cheese sauce. I mean, the stuff had substance. The pasta was weighty, and didn’t turn to mush in my mouth. The ricotta cheese sauce was actually thick, and flavorful without being a paste. If I hadn’t microwaved this, it might have been homemade for all I knew. I’m just saying this folks, for 5 points, you can’t go wrong here.

I will be buying this again, and keeping it as a staple in my freezer. You should do the same. It’s not a compromise, this stuff is a treat.

Lean Pockets Chart Pr0n

So, for some reason I’ve been on a kick of researching different product groups, and building charts out of them so I can find point values easily. It’s only fair that I pass on my “research” to you, the dieting and curious masses. Without further ado, here’s a break-down of the points and nutrition for Lean Pockets.

Oh, and sadly I could not do the same with the other Hot Pocket products as I can’t find their nutrition information published on the company’s website. Oh Well.

Per Serving Per Pkg
Flavor Calories Fat Fiber Points Points
Breakfast – Applewood Bacon, Egg & Cheese 290 8 2 6 12
Breakfast – Ham, Egg & Cheese 270 7 1 6 12
Breakfast – Sausage, Egg & Cheese 280 8 2 6 12
Breakfast Quesadilla – Southwest Style Turkey Sausage, Egg & Cheese 250 8 1 5 11
Cheeseburger 290 9 2 6 12
Chicken Parmesan 290 7 3 6 12
Culinary Creations – Chicken Bacon Dijon 270 8 3 5 11
Culinary Creations – Chipotle Chicken 260 7 4 5 11
Culinary Creations – Garlic Chicken White Pizza 270 8 3 5 11
Culinary Creations – Grilled Chicken, Mushroom & Spinach 240 6 3 5 10
Culinary Creations – Spinach Artichoke Chicken 240 6 3 5 10
Made with Whole Grain – Chicken, Broccoli & Cheddar 250 7 4 5 10
Made with Whole Grain – Ham & Cheddar 270 8 3 5 11
Made with Whole Grain – Meatballs & Mozzarella 240 7 4 5 10
Made with Whole Grain – Three Cheese & Broccoli 240 6 4 5 10
Made with Whole Grain – Turkey & Ham with Cheese 260 8 3 5 11
Made with Whole Grain – Turkey, Broccoli & Cheese 260 8 4 5 11
Made with Whole Grain Pizzeria – Supreme Pizza 220 6 4 4 9
Meatballs and Mozerella 290 9 3 6 12
Mexican Style – Chicken & Cheese 260 8 2 5 11
Mexican Style – Chicken Fiesta 240 7 3 5 10
Pepperoni Pizza 290 8 2 6 12
Philly Steak & Cheese 270 8 2 6 11
Pizzeria – Four Cheese Pizza 270 5 2 5 11
Pizzeria – Sausage & Pepperoni Pizza 280 8 2 6 12
Seasoned Crust Pizzeria – Grilled Chicken Mediterranean 330 7 3 7 7
Soft Baked SUBS – Italian Style Meatballs 250 7 3 5 10
Soft Baked SUBS – Pepperoni with Red Peppers 250 7 2 5 10
Soft Baked SUBS – Philly Steak & Cheese Made with Chicken 240 6 1 5 10
Stuffed Quesadilla – Grilled Chicken & Three Cheese 360 8 2 7 7
Stuffed Quesadilla – Grilled Chicken Fajita 350 8 2 7 7

Frozen Yogurt Chart Pr0n

So, a while back I did something that was useful to myself as well as the other weight watchers out there with a taste for Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and made a chart with all of the point values for the tasty pints. Chart’s are a great way to see the point values for items, so I’ve returned to do it again. This chart maps out the point values for the healthy ice cream alternative that I’ve mentioned before: Stonyfield Farms Organic Frozen Yogurt. The list has fat free at the top, and low fat frozen yogurts at the bottom in blue. Remember folks, ice cream is never out of season, enjoy!

Per Serving Per Pint
Flavor Calories Fat Fiber Points Points
Gotta Have Vanilla 100 0 0 2 8
After Dark Chocolate 100 0 0 2 8
Vanilla Fudge Swirl 120 0 0 2 10
Gotta Have Java 100 0 0 2 8
Strawberry-licious 100 0 0 2 8
Crème Caramel 130 1.5 0 3 11
Minty Chocolate Chip 140 2.5 1 3 11
Cookies ‘n Cream 130 2 0 3 11

A Decent Snack: Dried Apple Slices

So, I occasionally find myself in need of something to munch on. This is usually on my off diet days, and without thinking I often reach for things like candy or junk food in addition to the bad stuff I eat with meals. Well, I have recently tried to balance myself out, and to do that, I grabbed a treat that I love to eat all the time, and is good for me as well.

During the week, I’m always eating apples. As a morning snack, I munch a fresh apple. With my lunch, there’s usually a thing of unsweetened applesauce (it really is better without the sugar). Sometimes, I even fall back on my grilled apple recipe for dessert.

Well, this time around, I caught myself buying a Ritter Sport bar, and instead bought a healthy alternative while in Walmart: a bag of dried apples. Now, these things aren’t the dehydrated apples that you may find in other places. These are more akin to a dried apricot, being kind of moist, but at the same time not your standard apple. I guess in a snack world, I’d say that they were more like a fruit snack in texture.

What’s important to me is that they serve several purposes. First of all, they are sweet. I mean, they’re apples after all. Second, they are filling. These are dried, and expand when they hit your stomach. Third, they satisfy that craving I get for gummies sometimes. Oh, and fourth, they are only 1 point a serving with three servings in a bag. The bad news is that the bag will run you around two dollars, but you could do worse as I can easily get three separate servings out of this.

So, if you’re looking for a fat free snack that’s better then your average chewy gummy, give these dried apples a try. You’ll be eating them like candy.

Applebees Update: Let There be Nutritional Information

So, I’m pretty sure that everyone has been to a chain restaurant at some point in their lives. I know I’ve been to a few, and some are more of a reliable standby then others. One such, is Applebees. The food and prices there are both good and consistent. Their menu is varied enough that I can usually always find something I want to eat. On top of that, they even have several menus items with Weight Watchers points listed. Now if that isn’t helpful on a diet, I don’t know what is.

Well, as kind as they are about having Weight Watchers menu items, they have usually been less forthcoming with the nutritional information on other items on their menu. One such area that this was particularly annoying with was their “Under 550 Calorie” menu. It’s a great marketing ploy, and nice to have healthier options on a menu, but as any dieter knows, their is a lot more to nutrition then a calorie number. Weight Watchers specifically also looks for fat, and fiber.

Well, what started this whole spiel is that while recently on another site, Eat This Not That, one of the under 550 items was listed as a healthier alternative, and had nutritional information listed. Well, skipping over to Applebees‘ site, low an behold, there was a nutritional information section for all of the menu items. Hooray, no more guess work!

So, as a celebration, here is a nice clean breakdown of the Weight Watchers information for Applebees’ Under 550 Calorie menu:

Food Calories Fat Fiber Points
Asiago Peppercorn Steak 390 14 5 8
Asian Crunch Salad 490 9 7 10
Grilled Dijon Chicken & Portabellos 450 16 6 10
Grilled Shrimp & Island Rice 380 4.5 6 7
Spicy Shrimp Diavalo 500 10 12 10

Healthy Treat: Grilled Apple Slices

So, I am always on the lookout for healthy foods and recipes that don’t taste like they are healthy. It’s because I love me the sweets, and have one heck of a sweet tooth.

Well, lets take that knowledge, and combine it with Summer, the season of grilling…everything. Recently I talked about grilled zucchini and summer squash, and how easy and delicious it was. Well it got me thinking about what else I could potentially grill up. Somehow, I settled on apples. I had heard of baking an apple in a microwave from my roommate Jess back in college, so I figured that this would be on along the same lines of taste and consistency.

Ok, to the point: what I actually did. As you can see from the pictures that I thankfully managed to remember to snap, I sliced the apples into rings, but left the core in. After being told that it wasn’t bad by a former boss, I became one of those people who will much an ENTIRE apple. Combine that with the softening properties of grilling on high heat, and the center of the apple is no longer a problem.

Now for what you can’t see here. In addition to just grilling the apples, I used some of my lovely 0 calorie cooking spray, and a pack of Splenda to help caramelize the apples a bit. So, what are we left with? Rings of apple that taste somewhere between applesauce and candy, but have a much more satisfying heft. Oh yeah, did I mention that with a small granny smith like this, it’s only 1 point? Oh yeah, it’s awesome….Ok, why are you still here, you should be making this RIGHT NOW!