I didn't know Panera discontinued the black bean soup. I had it yesterday with a Greek salad as part of a pick 2. I added and apple and had a great lunch for about 400 calories.
I don't necessarily think it's difficult to find sensible (I didn't say nutritionally perfect) choices in most restaurants. My children love Cracker Barrel. I order grilled chicken tenders with broccoli and carrots. They don't provide nutritional information, but I consider this to be a sensible meal. (Yes, I know those vegetables have way more fat on them than the ones I cook at home.) I tend to favor places where the kid's menu has choices for my children other than hamburger, hot dog, or chicken fingers with fries.
If I can't find a sensible choice on a menu, I pick something that's not fried, skip the starch, and ask for additional vegetables prepared with as little fat as possible. I've never had an establishment fail to accommodate such a request.
Applebee's has some really good choices in the 550 calorie range.
Fitness Minutes: (6,133)
216 3/18/11 11:03 A
I have an even better solution. Go wherever you want, eat lightly all day, and then only eat half the meal put in front of you. Either by splitting or having them box up half immediately!
I'm assuming you're not eating out every night, so even if HALF the meal puts you over, its ok to do every once in awhile. I do it about once every 2 weeks, becuz I deserve it!
Also, make sure to skip the breads, and even the salads. Clearly you dont' want anything fried. Have your veggies steamed instead of sauteed. Opt for a boiled red potato over a giant baked potato. Just make smart choices and all will be good!
Go anywhere you like. Order anything that sounds good. Eat Half. Slowly. Savor it. Bring the other half home.
The biggest problem with most restaurant food is portion sizes.
Fitness Minutes: (44)
1,197 3/18/11 10:36 A
For special events, I love seafood, crab or lobster. I ask them to bring extra lemon but no butter (if it's there, i have no will power).
On a day to day run, I often do mexican, and choose black beans or ranch beans, say no to the chips on the table, and load salsa on EVERYTHING.
Then there's salads. "on the side" "with no cheese or chips", etc. Most returants have a salad you can "basic up" with some meat and the greens.
Fitness Minutes: (50)
996 3/18/11 8:54 A
Other than Panera Bread, I don't do fast food. I'm really disappointed that Panera's discontinued their black bean soup, though.
Real restaurants: I will usually chose the seafood as long as it isn't batter-fried. At sushi bars I order sashimi and one sushi roll (not the decked-out goopy special rolls, either).
I hate going to "American" restaurants -- the only thing that isn't cheating is the salad. Maybe you can get them to put a hunk of salmon on it.
I also avoid, but sometimes it isn't possible when going out, ordering meats as I am growing picky as to how the meat was raised.
Some Asian (although no longer the Chinese ones, unless you are lucky enough to live near a real Chinatown where you get to pick from the menu the natives pick from), and mid-Eastern menus provide healthy choices beyond just salads.
Look at the soups, too. Broth-based soups are good. Or, check out the appetizers. An appetizer instead of a main item works well for me, often.
We have a seafood restaurant at the marina. They have their seafood broiled, steamed or fried. They have the usual fattening sides (fries, mac anc cheese, etc) but they also have an option of getting a head... yes a head of broccoli steamed and it comes with the hollandaise sauce on the side. You can also get asparagus steamed or a salad. I always feel satisfied eating there and know that I haven't totally ruined my plan.
red lobster has a "lite house" menu. although the other day i went there and thought i was "cheating", and my lunch portion shrimp was 280 cal and had a side of steam broccoli and oh yeah and one of those biscuits...but it was aroun500-600 cal. i think good for eating out
Fitness Minutes: (45,551)
1,737 3/18/11 8:04 A
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