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VEG954 Posts: 3,825
8/3/14 8:55 A

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I make my own turkey sausage, cook scramble style then I have instant sausage for any meal.


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7/30/14 11:35 P

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Shred a chicken breast. Add 1 cup black beans, 1 can tomatoes, 1/2 cup corn, chili powder and cumin. Yum share with a partner.

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VEG954 Posts: 3,825
7/29/14 3:35 P

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Set the crock pot up with sauerkraut, scallions, caraway seeds and cubed pork on top.
Seasoned with salt and pepper.
It made the kitchen smell like a bit of wonderful.

Edited by: VEG954 at: 8/3/2014 (08:49)
BYEPOUNDS's Photo BYEPOUNDS Posts: 6,236
7/29/14 1:31 P

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everything sounds so good!

185 on my fourth anniversary of July 7, 2010
Joined weight watchers on 10/18/10 @ 188.0/after multiple 17 week passes took a break on 2/11/12
Weight Loss in 2011--24 lbs.
01/01/12--162.0
02/08/12--159
Plan to lose 12 lbs in 2012
4/19--157
5/18--150
7/07/12=6th anniversary
2012--lost 12 lbs this year!!!
1/04/13--149 :-)
4/11/13--147
5/28/13--145
9/29/13--138 50 lbs
1/13/14--131.5
Byepounds


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VEG954 Posts: 3,825
7/27/14 9:41 A

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Where do I find sugar free catsup (ketchup?)?

Edited by: VEG954 at: 7/29/2014 (15:33)
ANNMH130 Posts: 845
7/27/14 8:36 A

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No salt is important to me. I buy unsalted tomato sauce, add fresh/dried herbs & garlic,
then store in refrigerater.

Tomato sauce perks up any vegetable, rice or meat dish - the NO SALT marinade is
ready to use all week long. I also use this sauce for flatbread pizza and flavoring for
beans/ chili.

emoticon

http://www.linkedin.com/annmheos809.html

http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_edit
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GRALAN's Photo GRALAN Posts: 361
7/24/14 11:19 A

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I've begun buying frozen veggies and usually a bag of frozen chicken breast tenderloins. I rinse canned veggies also, and have found frozen french fries are a quick way to do some fried tators, mix in with burrito fillings, and of course by themselves. haha So your post rang my bell.

For sauces and such, I've used quartered potato into the final 15 to 20 mins of baking or simmering to lower the salts as well. And have fallen in love with fresh ingredients to do pasta sauces.

Thanks. See you round the virtual kitchen table herein. Hope that the turkey turned out great again. Oops, almost forgot. I'm going to start using my muffin-tin cookbooks, probably on the challenge to try 3 new recipes a month. I'll probably have to do it 3 a week, but that's okay. Nice thing is you can cook different recipes since everything is set for one or two per serving.

Ciao for now, meow emoticon
The newly dubbed Cat Whisperer of our complex -
gregory
aka gralan

Edited by: GRALAN at: 7/24/2014 (11:23)
your fellow suffering-servant,


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LESSCUPCAKES's Photo LESSCUPCAKES SparkPoints: (3,270)
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4/9/14 11:57 A

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Yogurt and fiber one bars - yummy

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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
4/7/14 12:07 P

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I enjoy canned foods but realize they are probably loaded with salt so I rinse off everything I can and use frozen foods instead and hope they aren't so salty.Will be cooking for friends on the 20th so will probably cook a turkey breast in the slow cooker they come out so good that way and of course lots of vege's.



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CHARCATS's Photo CHARCATS Posts: 64
4/1/14 7:52 P

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I think overall making a double batch of a dish that freezes well is the best way to make food easier. That way it's available as a lunch or a quick dinner- heat & serve. My favorite to make ahead is cream of chicken soup. After I made this (it was to avoid Campbell's and all the MSG in it for migraines) I couldn't figure out how I ever got stuck on the canned version anyway. It's amazing. Other good make ahead meals are enchiladas and waffles. Just make sure you date everything & don't let things sit in the freezer too long.

Char


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HOLLYSNOWWOMAN's Photo HOLLYSNOWWOMAN Posts: 2,364
3/15/14 9:46 P

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You need to look at Smartpockets again. They are new and improved LOL

Slow but will get there!


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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
3/15/14 5:25 P

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I love fast foods to cook.I don't go out to restaurants very often although I used to go out to lunch quite often.I have been told "I am out to lunch,again" but think whoever said that meant it mentally not physically.They are probably right as sometimes I just don't get it.I still love to cook but use a lot of instant ingredients instead of making something from scratch.Cake mixes come to mind first off.I have also found "instant pasta"in a bag makes short work of cooking pasta.I do make my spagetti sauce from scratch and DH loves it but he isn't to crazy about the tomato sauce but it is what I am used to.He says "old age isn't for sissys"and he is right.We are both really gettting old now but I am still ten years younger than him but I too have my problems.He suffers from severe COPD and uses oxygen most of the time.Regarding Smart pockets, used to love them but am trying to stay away from instant food.Suspect the calorie and salt content is very high but I haven't looked lately so don't know for sure.



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HOLLYSNOWWOMAN's Photo HOLLYSNOWWOMAN Posts: 2,364
3/15/14 3:31 P

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Anyone tried SmartPockets? These are easier for me to fill than the regular pita bread shape and I like the taste better. I put one end in toaster and then just flip it for the other end to toast (toast lightly or the lap over in middle will burn)

Slow but will get there!


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DALLAS_HILL's Photo DALLAS_HILL SparkPoints: (11,757)
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3/15/14 10:07 A

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Glad someone else in this world likes Rubber Vegetable Pie! Leftover rice also makes a good crust, couple of tablespoons of flaxseed meal or flour and a tablespoon of milk or water to glue it together.

A man's errors are his portals of discovery - James Joyce


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DALLAS_HILL's Photo DALLAS_HILL SparkPoints: (11,757)
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3/15/14 9:58 A

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Holly: I like my crockpot too, but went to a smaller one (1 qt) to cut down on leftovers. I make breakfast cereal overnight, works quite well. Mix up whatever combination of grains that suits your fancy. I use my large one just for large dinners, and for making stock, which freezes well.

The other useful tool I like is my blender; smoothies are well adaptable to the single life. Takes about 2 minutes to prepare, not much for cleanup. If you make too much, just put the rest in an ice cube tray and add it to the next one. A note of caution; remember how primary colors combine, otherwise you'll be drinking them with your eyes shut. Spinach has a distressing habit of looking like pond scum when blenderized! Overripe fruit, on the other hand, lose their blemishesl when reduced to liquid.

Both appliances allow me to spend a little more time making good food choices for ingredients, and appreciating the taste of non-box food.

.

A man's errors are his portals of discovery - James Joyce


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LONGLIFE7's Photo LONGLIFE7 Posts: 596
3/14/14 4:22 P

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rotisserie Chicken, Prepackage cleaned salad greens, Canned Beans (any kind) canned tomatoes (all types) Fresh Broccoli (so quick & easy)

Every day is a GIFT!


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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
1/16/14 4:22 P

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Yes I love homemade soups also. I will use what I have on hand or some frozen vege's mixed in with the fresh but usually I make my soup for myself because my DH doesn't like watery soup just the real thick kind which I make now and then. I made a soup yesterday with left over pork roast and fresh vege's.I love my crock pot and DH bought a very small one for $2.00from a friend and I use it much more than I thought I would.There are only two of us(obviously) but occasionally we have friends over for dinner.I cooked up a large bone in pork roast in the slow cooker and it was delicious and our friends loved it.I will freeze the rest of it because there is still 1/2of it left but DH loves it cold so have been cutting off pieces for him it is so good.I cooked a turkey breast in the slow cooker for Thanksgiving and it also came out perfect.Bess the slow cookers each and every one. CLinOregon



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HOLLYSNOWWOMAN's Photo HOLLYSNOWWOMAN Posts: 2,364
1/16/14 12:11 P

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I cook big batches of beans and soup and put them in the freezer. I love my cup of veggie soup from scratch. I don't add any meat until I am ready to eat it but 99% of the time I just eat veggie soup and I usually have some type of beans (cooked earlier) in it. I have to eat low salt so nothing canned for me unless they have no salt added. I also make a fresh salad and have beans in the freezer to put in it. I love my crock pot!

Slow but will get there!


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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
11/24/13 11:59 A

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anything off the shelf in my DH's bedroom,hard to believe but he has about six to seven shelves of stored food when he was a child they were quite poor so now that we have a little money he keeps the shelves full of food a lot of it canned stuff but it is convenient.Opened a large can of baked beans for him yesterday and there are lots of left overs in our refrig.at all times.I am not a great fan of leftovers but he is so will finish off his can of beans with some pork on the side.Our freezer is full of meat also.This does make our life easier!!



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KATRICK528's Photo KATRICK528 SparkPoints: (10,659)
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11/22/13 10:29 A

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Fresh cut up fruit and veggies. Hummus. Cereal.

=^.^= Meow


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IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (250,559)
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11/14/13 12:42 A

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frozen pizza. not the healthiest but something that my dh will also eat.

Don't forget to be awesome.


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EATYOURGREENS2's Photo EATYOURGREENS2 SparkPoints: (12,500)
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11/10/13 4:41 P

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Low Sodium/fat free stock. When the mood for soup hits and I don't have any homemade stock made up, it's fast and easy. Have found them at Trader Joes and Publix. I always have a box in the pantry just in case.

emoticon

Edited by: EATYOURGREENS2 at: 11/10/2013 (16:42)
Life is a great big canvas; throw all the paint you can at it.
- Danny Kaye
SHERMOR13's Photo SHERMOR13 SparkPoints: (6,584)
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11/4/13 7:48 P

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GREATidea - loved it! Thanks for sharing!

Have an awesome day!

Sherli


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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
9/1/13 1:15 P

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foods that make life easier ---hummm how about freezer food or the complete meals that I find in the grocery store?I try not to buy much of that because it is loaded with salt and fats.I did buy a package of frozen cheese ravioli and will cook then refrigerate a portion of it then make a salad out of it,the recipe I found sounds delishish.I love salads,sandwiches and homemade soups,they are all comfort foods to me and they do make my life easier.Lately I have been buying the ready made salads and they are good but my homemade green salad has a lot more ingredients in it !Now that we are living in town I go shopping almost everyday because the stores are so close.My hubby is a heavy meat eater so I will have to cook some meat for him today.We are having a couple over for Labor Day monday so I have a lot of cooking to do and several salads to make.



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OKANOG66's Photo OKANOG66 Posts: 5,804
8/26/13 8:20 A

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CLAYLADY001 - That's why we're all here for over indulging. Well, most of us!

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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
8/25/13 11:58 P

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CHOCOLATE that is what makes my day but I don't indulge very often,I know what is good for me and so I am pretty good at manageing my diet even though I do need to lose more weight.



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OKANOG66's Photo OKANOG66 Posts: 5,804
8/25/13 10:02 P

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Fresh fruit, fruit salads and veggie salads

Edited by: OKANOG66 at: 8/25/2013 (22:04)
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FORESTPAL's Photo FORESTPAL SparkPoints: (5,166)
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8/24/13 7:29 P

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Don't forget prunes make a great snack when you're hungry for sweets.

Let the good times increase as the weight shrinks.


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OKANOG66's Photo OKANOG66 Posts: 5,804
8/12/13 1:08 P

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My monthly stock up at M&M Meats for frozen single serving meals.
Better than anything I have ever tried in a grocery chain store, dry goods stores that have added grocery items including Costco!

Edited by: OKANOG66 at: 8/12/2013 (13:11)
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TAZZ46 SparkPoints: (157,345)
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8/12/13 12:02 P

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Fruit & Veggies

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IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (250,559)
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8/7/13 10:45 P

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apples, necterines, grapes. i like fruit that doesn't need to be peeled or chopped. easy to eat and a standard serving size.

Don't forget to be awesome.


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OKANOG66's Photo OKANOG66 Posts: 5,804
8/6/13 2:46 P

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Yonanas
www.yonanas.com/

Yonanas Machine for making healthier ice-cream.
Uses frozen bananas without the peel as the base,
then add any frozen fruit you want to change up the flavour.

Edited by: OKANOG66 at: 8/6/2013 (14:47)
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8/6/13 1:46 P

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Ice cream

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FORESTPAL's Photo FORESTPAL SparkPoints: (5,166)
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8/4/13 8:37 P

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diet tonic water is a great thirst quencher, plus it somehow deadens hunger. Q Tonic has no sugar or artificial sweetners, and is only 24 calories. plus for individual bottles;, it's the right amt to fill a glass full of ice cubes. neg for single bottles; not enough to satisfy my thirst.

Let the good times increase as the weight shrinks.


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OKANOG66's Photo OKANOG66 Posts: 5,804
8/4/13 3:03 A

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M&M Meats - They have a good selection of frozen single portion foods.


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8/3/13 7:57 A

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cereal

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FITGRANDMA120's Photo FITGRANDMA120 SparkPoints: (57,511)
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6/7/13 10:18 P

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If there is just a bite or two of leftover meat, cheese, veggies I keep a small storage container in the frig and after a day of errands I'll stop and pick up a McDonald's side salad to thro it on. Sometimes I will keep a small bag of grilled chilcken bread, small can of presliced olives and fat free feta cheese on hand for this reason.

The possibilities always outnumber the problems.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Kristie - Georgia



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CATLADY52's Photo CATLADY52 Posts: 13,385
5/29/13 3:17 P

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I get the Schwan's frozen chicken breasts in a five pound bag and about twice a month throw them in the crockpot with onions, chicken broth and seasonings for an afternoon. When they are done we have two with veggies and rice for dinner. The rest are used for enchiladas or tacos.

Nancy


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JENAE954 Posts: 7,020
3/26/13 11:12 P

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Convenience foods are a problem in my house.
When they are in the house I tend to eat much more.

Jenae


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BARBWMS's Photo BARBWMS Posts: 1,259
3/26/13 1:16 P

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They're a little higher in sodium than I like, but I do buy the Amylu chicken patties with caramelized onion at Costco.. they make a very rapid, filling and satisfying meal when it is too late or I am too tired to eat more appropriately!


I also buy prepared salad greens in the produce department. I find that although they cost more I waste much less and have salad at least once, sometimes twice a day. I also buy the coleslaw mix and use it for tacos, sandwiches, much more.

Be a voice, not an echo!
Barb


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NSPIXIE's Photo NSPIXIE SparkPoints: (44,885)
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3/21/13 6:47 P

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Cordon Swiss Chicken (I get it at costco). Individually wrapped raw chicken (real not the grounded preformed stuff) with a stuffing of ham and swiss cheese - 290 calories per piece. Great done in a convection oven. Just add a salad or some steamed veggies and you have a very satisfying meal. Keep a box of these and a bag of nice frozen veggies in the freezer and an effortless supper can be ready in 30 minutes...

I love the 100 calorie snack packs of hummus (Garden Originals is the brand I currently have) add some baby carrots and celery and you have a very filling (and healthy) snack. Even my husband likes it!

I guess bags/boxes of mixed greens and baby carrots should go on the list too.

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CLAIRE_LEFT_SP's Photo CLAIRE_LEFT_SP Posts: 2,802
3/1/13 6:45 P

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I buy Hanson's salt free mini-pretzels. 20 makes a serving - I use them for one of my daily snacks.

I also buy the diabetic friendly Boost drink and have that for lunch every day.

Claire
********
Those who think they have no time for a healthy lifestyle will sooner or later will have to find time for illness.
SPKRAUSE's Photo SPKRAUSE Posts: 543
1/2/13 7:47 A

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Re: "not starting from scratch" or similar ...

[1] as below -- frozen veggies, but more so for me: frozen berries, since they're often not in season fresh, and even if they are, they can go bad before I finish them. Great in smoothies and oatmeal, etc.

[2] but instead of a frozen food, I'd go with leftover use for 'not starting from scratch', in particular: quiche. I mean: pie shell, 2 eggs, some 'dairy,', and a couple handfuls of leftover veggies, cheese, and perhaps meat from the fridge ... voila! 'refrigerator pie,' 6 or 8 servings ...

"Habe nun, ach! Philosophie, Juristerei und Medizin, Und leider auch Theologie Durchaus studiert ..." (Goethe, "Faust")


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JENAE954 Posts: 7,020
12/23/12 3:47 P

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I like to cook smarter, not harder.
I cook up a batch of steel cut oats once a week for breakfasts and have it portioned out and ready for the microwave in the mornings.
Another thing I do is toast the oats in a dry pan before adding the water.

Jenae


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MARGOMCP's Photo MARGOMCP Posts: 8,670
12/23/12 10:10 A

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Yes, I'm doing a half ham for Christmas Eve and bought supplies to make eggs benedict for breakfast :-) and potato ham chowder in the crock pot, etc. Ham is so very versatile!


There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward. ~John Mortimer


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MOODYMOLLYR Posts: 203
11/25/12 5:39 P

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I took advantage of HEB's buy a half or whole spiral sliced ham and get a 12 pound turkey free. I heated the ham then took it apart slice by slice, wrapped the slices in foil, and put them in gallon freezer bags for the future. And no, I didn't use the glaze on it that came in the package, it was so sweet that I trashed it! I got about 18 individual servings in the form of slices. What was left, not sliced, I cut into chunks and wrapped and froze also along with the ham bone with some meat on it. I'll dice or shred the chunks one at a time and will probably get at least 3 meals out of each one. The ham bone will go in the slow cooker along with a pound of dried red kidney beans, after they've been soaked of course. Once the beans are done I'll pull out the ham bone, take the meat off, dice it and add it back to the beans. I'll then separate the ham and beans into single serve portions and freeze them. Had my first slice for dinner last night and it was good, what I really enjoyed was the fact that it wasn't extremely salty like so many hams are.
I fixed the turkey early, the Saturday before Thanksgiving, cut it into small pieces, at least the breasts, and froze it. I used on piece of breast meat for Thanksgiving dinner as well as dinner the next day and still have some left for tonight. I find this the easiest way to cook, take a piece of meat, generally chicken or turkey or an occasional pork loin chop or small steak, cook it and add something for a vegetable with it. I'm tired of throwing out food that I don't eat, it gets expensive very fast.

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JENAE954 Posts: 7,020
9/30/12 3:49 P

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Love to cook for a crowd and portion it out to freeze.
Instant dinners and save tons of money.

Jenae


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PATJOHNS1's Photo PATJOHNS1 Posts: 5,917
9/28/12 8:42 A

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Smart Ones frozen meals with a salad.

The first step in getting somewhere is by deciding not to stay where you're at.


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GATORJOY's Photo GATORJOY Posts: 4,929
9/27/12 12:09 P

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canned tuna!


But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
Isaiah 40:31 KJV


"Thus saith the Lord, thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel; I am the Lord thy God which teacheth thee to profit, which leadeth thee by the way that thou shouldest go." Is 48:17





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KNYAGENYA's Photo KNYAGENYA Posts: 7,438
9/27/12 8:20 A

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Rice cakes!

" The road to success is always under construction."- Lily Tomlin


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IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (250,559)
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9/24/12 1:01 A

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Frozen veggies, canned fruit

Don't forget to be awesome.


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PATJOHNS1's Photo PATJOHNS1 Posts: 5,917
9/22/12 11:06 A

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Thanks, SHERMOR13. These were excellent suggestions & made me hungry just reading them. Will definitely do this as I live alone, too.

The first step in getting somewhere is by deciding not to stay where you're at.


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SHERMOR13's Photo SHERMOR13 SparkPoints: (6,584)
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9/21/12 4:50 P

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I bought a roast on sale on Saturday, put it into the crockpot. I'm alone, so I ate it for dinner Saturday evening and Sunday evening & added veggies. The on Wednesday night I pulled it out of the fridge & used it again....but this time, I started with putting a whole wheat tortilla in a nonstick skillet, topped with cheese & thin slices of onions, as the cheese started to melt, I shredded some of the left over roast & put on 1/2 the tortilla; folder over & browned on the other side side. I did 2 of them for myself - with some salsa on my plate. They were SOOO delish.

I have a bit more of the roast & probably for Saturday lunch, I'll shred more of it & put bbq sauce on it & eat with coleslaw!

I love doing the same thing with chicken or whatever I buy that I can stretch for several days & use differently!

Have an awesome day!

Sherli


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MAROO358's Photo MAROO358 Posts: 543
8/26/12 4:04 P

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On the weekends we grill extra meats (steak, salmon, chicken, pork tenderloin) and use it during the week on sandwiches, wraps and salads (summer).

Remember you can be a miracle: it may seem small to you but can make smile or lend a hand to someone else.


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JANIED10's Photo JANIED10 SparkPoints: (11,915)
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8/26/12 12:07 P

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One of our must haves is rotisserie chicken. We buy 1 sometimes 2 and have it for dinner then pick the chicken clean putting it into freezer bags with 4-6 oz. in each bag. One goes in the fridge, the rest are frozen and taken out as we need.. We use it for sandwiches, enchiladas, soups, salads and pastas. It makes my life easier and it is cheaper than sandwich meat etc. If you take all the skin off it reduces the sodium too.

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IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (250,559)
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8/25/12 8:58 P

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steamfresh frozen veggies. so easy to have an extra serving without needing a lot of time to cook/prep them or worry about them going bad.

Don't forget to be awesome.


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KNEWMETODAY's Photo KNEWMETODAY Posts: 2,585
6/11/12 3:20 P

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Tried some Boca burgers last night. Filling and lower in calorie than hamburger.

Kathy emoticon

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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
6/10/12 7:52 P

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Hi, tonight I will just heat up some left over hamburger patties,fresh corn and potatoes and gravy,Today we had a large lunch at our local Applebees and really enjoyed it.So tonight will eat less,hopefully.



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KNEWMETODAY's Photo KNEWMETODAY Posts: 2,585
6/6/12 4:49 P

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I'm with you on the chicken in the stores. Frequently I buy a bag of boneless chicken breasts, cook up about 6, and have them available for salads, omelets, etc.

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MARCOSMASTER's Photo MARCOSMASTER SparkPoints: (42,865)
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6/5/12 6:55 P

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Gotta love the cooked chicken waiting for you to scoop it up and take it home from Krogers or Sam's. Also love the fish that is ready to be steamed straight from the back you can get tilapia and cod, easy lots of protein.

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KNEWMETODAY's Photo KNEWMETODAY Posts: 2,585
6/2/12 2:19 P

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Some of the salads on the website are terrific and keep well.

Kathy emoticon

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SHERMOR13's Photo SHERMOR13 SparkPoints: (6,584)
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6/1/12 9:03 A

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Fresh veggies prepped when gotten home from store; making a simple fruit salad, so it's ready to go.

Obviously frozen veggies are great

Have an awesome day!

Sherli


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COUZCAT's Photo COUZCAT Posts: 4,362
5/27/12 3:12 P

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Canned fish (low sodium) is a god send. Pair it with some white beans or cannelini, onions, peppers, greens and vinaigrette you have a good start on a meal. Just throw in some good bread.

Beans are easy to cook from scratch and sodium free. Since they freeze well, make a big batch, portion them up and toss in the freezer.

Cheers,
Catherine

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5/14/12 7:04 P

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The frozen mixed fruit is always a good thing to have available to snack on. Stella loves it too, but the chunks have to be cut up more for her. It's also good for refreshing drinks.

Kathy

Where in OR do you live? I have a family reunion in Turner (I think that's the name of the town); I'll be staying near Portland with relatives and driving back and forth.

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CLAYLADY001 Posts: 372
5/13/12 12:13 P

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Good Morning All,"Foods that make life easier"I like that topic.I am always looking for an easier way for many things but especially cooking.My hubby loves the instant foods but I like the more natural foods without preservatives and try not to eat the fast foods like hot dogs but hubby loves the beef dogs with the crescent rolls wrapped around them so I make a bunch then freeze them individually and he then can just help himself to them whenever he wants.
I do enjoy the frozen vege's and probably once a week make TopRamen soup add some frozen vege's and some left over meat and call it dinner,he loves that and it is easy for me.Today will fix a full dinner for the two of us.I will have some grilled shrimp and he gets lobster but that is OK because I am not a great fan of lobster.Once a year for him is enough to keep him happy!!Not sure what I will fix him for Fathers Day!! Maybe a steak and baked potatoes.We do love to eat and cooking it ourselves makes it taste so much better and saves us a bunch of money.Well Happy Mothers Day to all of you, CLin Oregon



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KNEWMETODAY's Photo KNEWMETODAY Posts: 2,585
5/12/12 6:53 P

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I love the frozen veggies too; but I love to thaw them and roast them. Roasted brussels sprouts were a bit hit for a family dinner--not a one left. I also have tortillas, beans, rice on hand. Even for my granddaughter, I can use a tortilla with cheese--nuke 'em for a quesadilla; she loves it!!

Kathy

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THELOVELYBIRD's Photo THELOVELYBIRD SparkPoints: (3,422)
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3/31/12 9:27 P

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I definitely agree that frozen veggies make life easier. But just a little prep makes my life easier and cheaper.

When I get home from the grocery store, I prep EVERYTHING that I bought. All produce gets diced and stored in clear tupperware containers, meat (when I ate meat) would get divided and put into the fridge, tofu gets put into a container, herbs get chopped, veggie snack packs get made, etc. That way, when I do have to cook, I can just grab things and throw them in a pan, instead of having an hour of prep. Also, when I want a snack, I can just grab a handful of freshly chopped, peeled carrots or something.

I used to buy tons of veggie trays, etc, but paying 3.00-5.00 for a veggie tray that would cost .28 cents to make (I did the math, I can make 6 trays for the same price as buying one,) was getting to be too much.


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LASHGAL SparkPoints: (25,866)
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3/29/12 9:09 A

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Frozen vegetables make life easier! I know a lot of people don't like casseroles, but I do and when I make them for myself I have leftovers - perfect for lunch the next day :) Having stuff around like tortillas, beans, and rice make for easy dinners as well because you can make all kinds of "tex-mex" food.

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MNJONES2's Photo MNJONES2 Posts: 2,016
2/20/12 1:26 P

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My niece gets together with several friends once every 6 weeks or so. They all bring ingredients for an entree - like enchiladas, chili, each brings something different. The ingredients are ready to assemble and each also brings whatever dish or container they want the entree to go into.

So they gab, laugh etc etc while they assemble the food. Each walks away with 4 or so completed recipes ready to go in the freezer and then they pull it out when wanted. She says it helps so much....

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2/19/12 11:16 P

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I do the same with soup! I also keep the Soup at Hand for work when I just don't have anything else available. Hey, we do what we can!

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

"What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?"
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LAULA1984's Photo LAULA1984 Posts: 330
2/18/12 4:54 A

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I always have some tinned soup or even some 'cup of soup' sachets in work.

I am a Social Worker and sometimes struggle to find the time to have a proper lunch break so I make sure that I have some quick things to hand. I do occasionally find myself having a tin of soup at home too- especially on the days when I haven't finished work until gone 9!!

"Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out."

Robert Collier


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IMREITE's Photo IMREITE SparkPoints: (250,559)
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2/13/12 12:42 A

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My hubby is a picky eater so there are not a lot of options that i can keep on hand that we both eat. but i like low sodium canned soups and store bought whole grain bread.

dried fruit is a favorite. i have a food dehydrator so i look forward to doing my own.

Don't forget to be awesome.


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GEOSUE Posts: 216
1/29/12 2:17 P

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I like using the turkey Italian meatballs. They are easy to count calories. You can make a meal or make a sandwich.

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CLAYLADY01 Posts: 83
1/29/12 1:37 P

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Frozen meatballs,yes I need to make a batch and freeze them.We have a large door freezer and I freeze almost everything.A lot of meat especially.I do like the frozen TV dinners BUT have them for lunch instead of dinner and for me just the right amount of calories even though they are a little salty!!Hubby doesn't like them at all but I have thought about making my own TV dinners and freezing them,that way I know what is in them.


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AUNTIEA1959's Photo AUNTIEA1959 SparkPoints: (5,592)
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1/27/12 5:02 P

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I'll be honest - I just don't have the money (or the desire) to use most prepackaged 'convenience' foods. I will use pre-shredded or pre-chopped veggies in the produce department. I also feel that frozen veggies & fruit are a Godsend. Most of my foods that make life easier are things I do myself. Buy a large package of meat & portion it out for servings (thank goodness for the home vacuum sealer!), & if you partially freeze meat you can slice it for stir fry & freeze packages of that too.

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ADLINS's Photo ADLINS SparkPoints: (56,778)
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1/25/12 9:23 P

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I gave up frozen dinners about a year ago... you won't miss them. Some nights it's hard to come up with dinner, but I've got a small go to repertoire and I'm working on adding to it.

I do use some frozen things still - Morningstar Farms, chicken sausage, the meatballs for the crockpot recipe, but I'm getting to where I prefer more organic, non-preservative foods.

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

"What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?"
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JSLICE812's Photo JSLICE812 SparkPoints: (14,098)
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1/25/12 8:12 P

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So I totally agree that boxed foods are super easy, and I'll bring a Lean Cuisine in for my lunch a couple days a week, but man oh man are they packed with sodium.... My new years resolution this year was to cook more dinners at home for my boyfriend and I (where I can control the amount of salt) and bring leftovers into work with me. My crockpot has made my life easier so far this month and I've only had one Lean Cuisine so far.

Remember... nothing tastes as good as healthy feels.



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IGOALOT's Photo IGOALOT SparkPoints: (13,421)
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1/17/12 2:21 P

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i devote one day a week to cooking (ugh!!) I made tv dinners for the rest of the week. then all we have to do is heat and eat. also make up big batches of things like meat balls, chili, soup etc to have on hand.

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WATERFELON's Photo WATERFELON SparkPoints: (18,441)
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1/8/12 11:11 A

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I hate to say it but the 1 food that makes my life "easier" is boxed cereal! A cup of high bran, less sugar cereal and a cup of milk is dinner on those days when I've forgotten to fix or thaw something (much less often since I've been using the SP meal planner!), or I'm too tired, too lazy, or too busy to eat a proper meal.

But for easier cooking when I don't have a recipe to follow, I try to always have some cut up veggies in my freezer. I buy them when they are on sale and they stay in my freezer for a long time. It's so easy to just put a cup into the crock pot with some chicken stock, spices and some kind of protein serving, and let it stew while I'm at work or whatever.

And tofu. Easy, quick protein, no thawing necessary! I buy a block every payday so it's always in my fridge. Another option if I forget to thaw some meat out for dinner!

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KATTYKATHY Posts: 4,324
1/7/12 4:37 P

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I think every store is high on some things and low on others. On my bicycle, I get get the sales at all of them and no gas prices. I admit to purchasing from Schwan's home delivery just for the convience of delivery. It is a little pricey but they do have healthy choices and many of the items end up costing about the same as the store. It also keeps me from the store snack attack.

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ADLINS's Photo ADLINS SparkPoints: (56,778)
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1/6/12 7:56 P

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I agree! But, I'm finding that where I live anyway, many items are actually cheaper at Whole Foods than the grocery store. The opposite is also true. I'm not adverse to making my own, but liked the idea of trying the frozen ones since that is what the recipe called for.

"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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BARBLAM1 Posts: 499
1/6/12 10:56 A

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Whole Foods is so expensive. I have made and frozen meatballs for years. Just stick with lean beef or turkey and cook them tp 80% and freeze. If you can find the time to make your own they will always have exactly what you want in them.

Barbara


 
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SLOLOSER's Photo SLOLOSER Posts: 8,646
1/6/12 6:28 A

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Hmm, I don't have a Whole Foods near me, but I could make up a batch up meatballs and freeze them! I think that is a great idea.

Diane

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1/5/12 7:54 P

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Another thread has somewhat evolved to a discussion of foods that are still healthy but don't require starting from scratch, i.e. foods that make life easier. So, this thread is born.

I'm trying to avoid heavily processed foods and foods with preservatives, but I also sometimes need a little help as I'm single and don't have a ton of time in the evenings. So this post has to do with meatballs.

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, maybe even try the turkey or chicken ones, as it would be really easy to add one or two to a quick pasta dish. Since the serving size is more than two, I'd still be able to keep the calories in check.

"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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Co-team leader: Cooking for One or Two


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