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IGOALOT's Photo IGOALOT SparkPoints: (13,421)
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1/23/12 9:45 P

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i let my slow cooker or pressure cooker do a lot of time consuming cooking for me. there are endless recipes for these appliances, add a veggie and dinner is ready. usually make extra to have left overs for lunch the next day.

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ADLINS's Photo ADLINS SparkPoints: (54,927)
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1/5/12 7:51 P

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I was thinking the same thing... along the lines of foods that make life easier but are still good for one. I'll get it set up.

Thanks!

"Nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission." -Eleanor Roosevelt-

"What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?"
-Jean Jacques Rousseau-
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CLAIRE_LEFT_SP's Photo CLAIRE_LEFT_SP Posts: 2,802
1/5/12 7:07 P

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Perhaps we should create a thread about the different foods we are trying so that others can more easily find that information. We aren't talking about the 5 convenience foods here any more.

Claire
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Those who think they have no time for a healthy lifestyle will sooner or later will have to find time for illness.
ADLINS's Photo ADLINS SparkPoints: (54,927)
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1/5/12 6:54 P

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I just tried a new recipe that called for frozen meatballs (I've learned to try the recipe as is the first time and then decide how to modify). I'd never bought frozen meatballs, but got some from Whole Foods - nothing fake, just what's in there, including no hormones for the beef.

While I really need to scale down the recipe, I'm thinking about keeping a pack of the smaller meatballs on hand as it would be really easy to add one or two to a quick pasta dish. Since the serving size is more, I'd still be able to keep the calories in check.

Edited by: ADLINS at: 1/5/2012 (19:51)
"Nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission." -Eleanor Roosevelt-

"What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?"
-Jean Jacques Rousseau-
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
Co-team leader: I Love Muffins
Co-team leader: Cooking for One or Two


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AWICKEDHEART's Photo AWICKEDHEART Posts: 85
1/4/12 11:02 P

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Heh...I cook a LOT. 80% of my food shopping is done in the produce and bulk sections, hehe.

That said, I really like the little packets of Quaker Oatmeal (I use the low sugar or high fiber kinds). I also really like buying Nature Valley granola bars - they're always on sale, are cheap to begin with, and I like the flavor.

My Accountability Blog: awickedheart.blogspot.com/


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ANNEB82's Photo ANNEB82 Posts: 20
12/30/11 4:52 P

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Morningstar garden veggie patties

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IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (242,452)
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12/28/11 12:59 A

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frozen steam veggies in a bag. some have many servings, but i use then for leftovers on another day,

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MNJONES2's Photo MNJONES2 Posts: 2,016
12/15/11 11:20 A

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How is this one - I grabbed a roasted chicken last week when I was short on time. It was nice all I had to sit it on the table!

FIVEBOYS5 Posts: 114
12/4/11 9:22 P

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Am new to this team. Joined to get ideas for cooking for two (retirees) My hubby has heart problems so have to watch fat and sodium.

Rely on bagged lettuce and chicken breast. Cook many breasts on grill or bake and use on lettuce, pasta, rice.

EJ

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MNJONES2's Photo MNJONES2 Posts: 2,016
11/29/11 11:22 A

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salad in a bag when setting up for a party!

IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (242,452)
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11/12/11 1:24 A

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I can my own marinera sauce, but i will admit some sauces can be quite healthy and inexpensive.

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SALLIESMILES's Photo SALLIESMILES Posts: 16
10/9/11 9:25 A

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Bellecat, I use Napa Valley Bistro Homemade Style Manara Sauce too. They have it at my local grocery store (Hanafords). I randomly tried it one day because I saw that it was all natural and wasn't too expensive. It's delicious!

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MNJONES2's Photo MNJONES2 Posts: 2,016
10/5/11 4:07 P

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Frozen vegetables are usually great for me! I can decide how much to use, there is quite a variety and I can use the bag as an ice pack in an emergency!

MOODYMOLLYR Posts: 203
4/14/11 6:46 P

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Bellecat that does look good except for the wine in it. Because of my meds I drink no alcohol at all, even when it's cooked as contrary to common belief not all the alcohol cook out.

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BELLECAT's Photo BELLECAT Posts: 357
4/14/11 6:43 P

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I am really, really picky about any convenience foods I'll use. I have found a jarred tomato sauce that is great, and I like to have it on hand for quick meals. Mezzetta Napa Valley Bistro Homemade Style Marinara truly does have a homemade taste. When you read the list of ingredients, it’s clear why it is so good.

“Imported Italian plum tomatoes from the San Marzano region, imported olive oil, fresh onions, sea salt, fresh garlic, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon wine, fresh basil, black pepper, oregano.”

That's it! No added sugars, "flavors", etc.

Kath

My mantra: All things in moderation, and eat REAL food: inthekitchenwithkath.com



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MOODYMOLLYR Posts: 203
4/14/11 3:25 P

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The fact that I don't buy convenience foods is one reason I use so few coupons when shopping. Very little of what I buy has coupons on it and if a national brand has a coupon out it generally won't bring the price down near or below the price of the same item in the store brand. I do admit that I buy some national brands, no matter the price, but I generally stick to store brands. When the store brand is 20 cents cheaper or more, I generally but that. Don't have a slow cooker right now so I buy canned beans, black beans, kidney beans, etc. instead of using the dried beans and the store brand seems just as good as good as the national brand. Since I drain and thoroughly rinse canned beans I don't get much of the sodium and flavorings that are added to them.

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CAOUTCHOUC's Photo CAOUTCHOUC SparkPoints: (8,143)
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4/14/11 2:47 P

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Honestly?

Just about any vegetable/fruit. What do you have to do, really? At most, chop and boil.

I prefer to create my own convenience foods, simply because the foods of convenience out there tend to sacrifice legitimate health for that sense of ease. I'd rather spend ten minutes transforming food myself than have to read a list of chemicals I don't understand, haha.

For me, this generally means cooking a batch of rice/quinoa and a batch of beans at the beginning of the week to have on hand (which is pretty hands-off, I use a rice cooker and slow-cooker, respectively).

But, you know...we're all busy. Personally, I'm a full-time student with a job and two volunteer positions totaling who knows how many hours a week. I think we should all take the time to care for ourselves, rather than depend (hope!) that a frozen meal can do it for us.

Edited by: CAOUTCHOUC at: 4/14/2011 (14:49)
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MOODYMOLLYR Posts: 203
3/26/11 5:23 P

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I suggest you check all jarred/ canned sauces for the sodium and high fructose corn syrup amounts. In fact I believe that many things that end in "ose" are a type of sugar and not something conducive to losing weight.

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CRAZYDOGLADYBO's Photo CRAZYDOGLADYBO SparkPoints: (61,264)
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3/15/11 3:17 P

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I use canned salt free tomato, canned tuna in water and everything else is from scratch. Including chicken stock so I can control what is in my food.

Bo

Northern Arizona MDT

I love my dogs! Annie is a fearful dog and is doing great under careful management. I raw feed my dogs.

Diagnosed with Celiac Disease 02/25/2011

Non-smoker after smoking 30 years and was at 3 packs a day.

Former skinny person who never exercised and is now trying to make exercise a habit.


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GMAHOSS1 SparkPoints: (19,127)
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3/14/11 3:34 P

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i make pesto sauces and do the same thing with. yesterday it was green chile pesto with whole wheat pasta yummy

i started this at 248.8 pounds and am hoping i can lose at least 50 in one year.


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SISLEY7's Photo SISLEY7 SparkPoints: (2,634)
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3/13/11 2:42 P

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If yall are looking for a healthy pasta sauce the best one I have ever made is here

http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-de
tail.asp?recipe=575063

I make it up then freeze it in single serving batches, I use it for pasta, pizzas, and everything that needs a little sauce. Its amazing

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GMAHOSS1 SparkPoints: (19,127)
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3/12/11 12:43 P

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oops alway use fresh if you can. the frozen is great for lots of things you just have to drain and dry really well you can even add to chocalate cake mix. today i had pre cooked bacon 3 good size slices but only 70 cal. great try it

i started this at 248.8 pounds and am hoping i can lose at least 50 in one year.


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ROCK_CLIMBER2 Posts: 328
3/12/11 10:00 A

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So do you just rinse the fresh spinach or do you add frozen to the sauce. I usually just use the fresh spinach instead of lettuce

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GMAHOSS1 SparkPoints: (19,127)
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3/11/11 3:55 P

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use a bunch of fresh spinach to make pest to put on pita bread or use as a dip.just put some almonds and a little olive oil in a blender. very good on whole wheat pasta.

i started this at 248.8 pounds and am hoping i can lose at least 50 in one year.


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CSIMS2 SparkPoints: (0)
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3/11/11 10:10 A

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I use spinach in a lot of pasta sauce and other sauce recipes as a thickener. Actually very good with the no salt or low salt pasta sauce. Also I grind oatmeal for recipes with bread crumbs

Chris

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GMAHOSS1 SparkPoints: (19,127)
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3/6/11 12:52 P

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i have been buying frozen veggies to put in anything i cook. really good with whole wheat pasta and low salt soy sauce. i do not salt anything any more, as most all things come with salt in it. after a few days you really don't miss the salt.

i started this at 248.8 pounds and am hoping i can lose at least 50 in one year.


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CLAIRE_LEFT_SP's Photo CLAIRE_LEFT_SP Posts: 2,802
3/6/11 5:42 A

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Cooking in fruit juices - what a great idea!

Claire
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Those who think they have no time for a healthy lifestyle will sooner or later will have to find time for illness.
KATTYKATHY Posts: 4,324
3/5/11 4:09 A

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It is sometimes easier to get tomato juice without salt than to get sauce that way. A little cornstarch will thicken it with spices of your choice you've got it made (great for small amounts for singles). I use fruit juices to cook veggies instead of water for different flavors. This works for meat as well and doesn't add salt but does a little flavor and an extra fruit for the daily amount. Again it is great for singles because it doesn't leave a lot of left overs.

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ROCK_CLIMBER2 Posts: 328
3/4/11 8:48 P

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I stock up on fransisco renaldi's no salt added sauce. It tastes ok and I always doctor it with at the least crushed red pepper and "Italian" seasoning with no salt.

Happy "easy" cooking ;-)

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CLAIRE_LEFT_SP's Photo CLAIRE_LEFT_SP Posts: 2,802
3/4/11 8:33 P

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Hmm. Hard pressed to call anything out of a jar healthy - the pasta sauce has a lot of salt, too.

I buy frozen stir fry veggies that I toss in with cut up meat/poultry/fish and some herbs/spices (rather than salty soy sauce). Dinner's ready in 20 min max with quick cook rice.

I often microwave chicken until it's almost done then put it under the broiler to give it a brown outside. Slather with your fav flavors.

I do a lot of rubs to give pork or chicken different flavors. I put together Italian herbs; or cinnamon based; or paprika based etc.

Freezables to speed up prep time:
-Make a bunch of rice and put in meal size portions
-Dice some onion and shred others, putting them into different freezer bags.
I chip off a chunk to add to recipes.
-Pre-cook chunks of chicken or beef stew pieces for stir-fry or quick soups

Good luck!


Claire
********
Those who think they have no time for a healthy lifestyle will sooner or later will have to find time for illness.
ADLINS's Photo ADLINS SparkPoints: (54,927)
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3/4/11 7:37 P

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Came across this article from Yahoo! Shine: shine.yahoo.com/channel/food/5-conve
ni
ence-foods-that-are-actually-healthyR>-2461258/


There are some in there that could help the single or couple with quick meal and are giving me some ideas to add to the short list I've got right now of quick meals I can fix in the evening.

Any other healthy convenience foods that come to mind? I'm thinking some of the "dressed up" frozen veggies might also fall in this category.

"Nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission." -Eleanor Roosevelt-

"What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?"
-Jean Jacques Rousseau-
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
Co-team leader: I Love Muffins
Co-team leader: Cooking for One or Two


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