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BME_22 SparkPoints: (14,988)
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Posts: 869
1/24/13 9:11 A

Do you have a cookbook? Especially maybe an older cookbook?

Every Sunday, my husband and I sit down with the cookbook and plan out 4-6 meals for the week. Then we write down the ingredients (usually reasonably whole foods because we try to choose healthy recipes that don't have a lot of packaged ingredients), and THEN we go to the store.

I've found using actual cookbooks to be much easier than using online meal plans. It makes it a lot easier to make the food, too. My husband looks at what's left on the menu for the week, picks something that looks good on that day to him, and then flips to the page number by the name of the recipe and starts cooking.

GRAMCRACKER46 SparkPoints: (29,138)
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Posts: 1,173
1/23/13 7:59 P

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Oops that didn't answer your question. I get a lot of great down to earth recipes from Taste of Home Healthy Cooking.

GRAMCRACKER46 SparkPoints: (29,138)
Fitness Minutes: (15,631)
Posts: 1,173
1/23/13 7:54 P

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Shop the perimeter of of the grocery store --- fruits veggies dairy and meat. Then fill in the rest. On any packaged foods read the INGREDIENTS. I will usually use real butter and sugar in small amounts rather than the fake to avoid chemical additions.

OK off my soap box. Remember all things in moderation. Good luck to you.
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Edited by: GRAMCRACKER46 at: 1/23/2013 (19:55)
YOJULEZ SparkPoints: (15,605)
Fitness Minutes: (120)
Posts: 2,171
1/23/13 6:43 P

I've actually been working on the foundations for starting a blog that has menu plans and recipes for exactly what you describe... basic good foods with very little processed items, with stuff you can find in a normal grocery store for reasonable prices along with how to shop seasonally etc. I think there's a big spot in the "food blog" market for that. But, it's a bit of a ways off as I want to start it up right with a good looking site etc.

In the meantime, I do post my meal plans in my blog here once a week, usually on Thursdays. This week and next week are kind of messed up because I have some weird scheduling issues going on, but most of the time I cook at home every weeknight, and at least one weekend night. But, you can check those out if you want to get some ideas. Heck, you can even look in my trackers too :) One note, I eat large portions as I'm technically in maintenance, but the portions can be easily reduced for weight-loss mode.

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,329
1/23/13 5:34 P

I don't like shopping to match my menu; I prefer looking for a menu that matches what is in my shopping cart. I focus on buying items that are fresh, seasonal, quality - and then looking for interesting ways to prepare them.

Sparkrecipes, other recipe sites, or just plain old Google will yield plenty of suggestions - just type in the main ingredient(s) and hit search. If I examine a recipe and find it relies on processed foods (can of condensed chicken soup, packaged cake mix, etc.), pass!



KRISTEN_SAYS SparkPoints: (73,428)
Fitness Minutes: (35,001)
Posts: 5,088
1/23/13 5:18 P

What kind of recipes are you making? Maybe you can google an easy-to-find alternative for that ingredient that you seem to have trouble with.

RUSSELL_40 Posts: 16,826
1/23/13 3:33 P

You can always try low carb..lol. Plain meat, fish, fowl. Fresh fruit, and veggies. Cheese, nuts, seeds. Butter, mayo, and oils.

If you want to not go low carb, you can just eat more fruits, nuts, and vegetables. The menu is still basic foods.

The number 1 thing you need to do is stop buying food in packages. Carbs are easy to package. You can just add sugar, salt, and chemicals, and it will sit on the shelves for years. So just focus on eating cleaner carbs. I wouldn't eat a potato as a low carber, or noodles, but if you think the ingredients list is short enough, add them too.

Go to the store and read the labels, and come up with your own menu. I would stay with the SP ranges, but try to eliminate foods with words I could not pronounce, and replace them with single ingredient foods like an apple.

DIDS70 Posts: 5,079
1/23/13 8:49 A

I am currently doing a 28 day bootcamp for raw food. I am in no way suggesting that you go raw, but my weekly grocery bill has not been over $60 for the week. You can cut this down drastically by buying from farmers markets. I only buy what I need. The plan is like 4 or 5 different salads.
All I am saying is that there is nothing strange in the meals. Collards, kale, spinach, assorted nuts, assorted seeds, fruits and other veggies. i don't have to go to health food stores or speciality stores to find the things I need.

I am not aware of any places on line to go as I do not eat the SAD which is what most of the plans I have seen are based on. Have you tried the SP plans? I am not sure how specialized they get, but i am sure you can easily make adjustments.

GUMBO25 SparkPoints: (41)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 1
1/22/13 9:17 P

Where can I find menu plans and recipes for clean eating that doesn't have a bunch of ingredients that I cannot pronounce or would have to buy 100 different items at the health food store?

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