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MARKATSPARK Posts: 5,869
6/15/14 5:56 A


KKLENNERT809 Posts: 10,742
6/14/14 8:15 P

Yes and that's why I don't eat out very often.

KENDILYNN SparkPoints: (22,924)
Fitness Minutes: (24,670)
Posts: 2,738
6/14/14 4:42 P

My husband and I have a date night planned for tonight, and I had to remind him that we didn't *have to* go out to dinner. Because honestly, I can usually make it better, healthier and cheaper at home. Plus we save $$ when we get the babysitter for drinks/dancing as opposed to dinner and a movie.

SUNSHINE99999 Posts: 19,025
6/14/14 3:05 P

it is a nice treat, but you do save on the money end of it.

UKNOWITNOW SparkPoints: (64,560)
Fitness Minutes: (31,299)
Posts: 2,615
6/14/14 3:04 P

I like to eat out because I don't like to cook. My husband is a good cook and he does most of the cooking. When he doesn't cook I have low cal frozen entrees to pop in the microwave.

SOOZERELLI SparkPoints: (56,050)
Fitness Minutes: (51,668)
Posts: 451
6/14/14 2:38 P

yes - I find I eat out less and less...I can usually cook healthier and tastier at home, plus the expense of it. at least there are a few options if I don't want to cook.

MARKATSPARK Posts: 5,869
6/14/14 6:03 A


MARKATSPARK Posts: 5,869
6/14/14 6:02 A


EMPRESSAMQ Posts: 5,077
6/13/14 6:17 P

I only eat at restaurants where I know I can get a safe, gluten free meal and have found recently that there are rather a lot of them in my area, so no, not really disappointed with my dining out experiences lately.

I love to take mental notes of dishes I have out and recreate them at home with fewer calories and healthier ingredients and less sodium, though.

LADYCJM SparkPoints: (57,456)
Fitness Minutes: (36,342)
Posts: 2,545
6/13/14 1:09 P

So, I went to a latin-fusion place last night with some friends.
The quality of the food was okay but there really wasn't anything exciting on the menu. I can make fish tacos, sliders, rosemary chicken ....

The best meal I've had recently was at Olive Garden, a steak dish that was really good.

It seems like our local restaurants are either trying too hard to be different with things like chick pea and mustard candied pork or are going safe with pizza, sliders and stuff any one of us can make at home.

AZULVIOLETA6 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (74,443)
Posts: 3,293
6/13/14 1:19 A

Ha,yes, almost always for the last few years.

If I am going to splurge, I find it better to do it at home.

EXOTEC Posts: 3,327
6/13/14 12:18 A

Thanks HMBROWN1 - I love the angelkitty too! But he's not nearly so wonderful as my *real* kitty, who I lost almost 2 years ago to renal failure (at nearly 20 years of age). His beautiful self is pictured on my Spark Page.
I miss him so...

JANIEWWJD SparkPoints: (578,019)
Fitness Minutes: (349,967)
Posts: 16,362
6/12/14 11:02 P

I always try to eat at the same restaurants where I know the food is good.

ETHELMERZ Posts: 20,296
6/12/14 3:41 P

My husband doesn't like if we eat out, and I order some stupid salad with some meat on it, which I can make at home anytime. The point of eating out is to eat something different that you can't or don't like to cook, and, CLEAN up after! So we don't eat out that way too much, not enough to complain about it. If we need something quick, even fast food places have so called healthy choices, but they are the usual, boring stuff, so I'll have a small burger or chicken sandwich, no fries, which are our downfall. I hate to eat out and get their version of healthy, those dumb vegetables like broccoli, that are hard as rocks, because they are afraid to steam them or cook them a bit so they taste better! Yuck! Big waste.

MANDIETERRIER1 Posts: 17,529
6/12/14 3:39 P

There is only one place that I like to eat out, these days. And that is Victoria's Gastro Pub. They have a Lobster Grilled Cheese with Brie and special bread that I cannot make at home. That is a treat though. So many calories.

ATHENA1966 Posts: 3,976
6/12/14 3:35 P

I agree eating out these days is rather disappointing. Now the yearly treat of eating at a fancy restaurant is another story. The food is usually excellent and must be portioned accordingly. That is a rare treat.

6/12/14 10:59 A


CJGODESS101 SparkPoints: (30,781)
Fitness Minutes: (9,224)
Posts: 611
6/12/14 10:44 A

I use eating out like a treat, and only eat out once or twice a month. I typically stick to nonchain restaurants. I also use Yelp for reviews when picking where I want to eat.

HMBROWN1 Posts: 16,863
6/12/14 10:12 A

I love your kitty picture!

EXOTEC Posts: 3,327
6/12/14 8:33 A

I have a narrow range of restaurants I will go to. Most of them tend to be ones which will substitute to my specifications.

Since adopting a more "real whole foods" diet, many foods simply don't taste right anymore. If I can get those real foods in a restaurant, without too much alterations applied, I will eat there. If not, I'd rather just do it at home. An exception is seafood - I can get good seafood in a lot of places, and I'd rather have it out since it tends to "aromatize" my house in ways I'd prefer it didn't! I will pan-sear or bake some occasionally. But I'm a big fan of steamed shellfish, and I'd rather just let the restaurant do that.

I love a nice steak, but I can do that at home better than a restaurant, and cheaper. I used to do steak in restaurants, until they all decided they had to "brand" their product with seasonings that completely obliterate the taste of the meat. Why bother? So I don't do that very often, or never in the case of places that won't just cook it clean.

Sometimes I'll succumb to a buffet. Rarely. Fast food, almost never. Perhaps something like Boston Market™ or Chic-Fil-A™ if I'm in a pinch. Never burger or other fast food types.

As a general rule, I like home cooking far better now that I'm on a healthier plan. It's real food. I'm not so sure about most restaurant stuff!

MARKATSPARK Posts: 5,869
6/12/14 5:36 A


UMBILICAL Posts: 12,786
6/11/14 5:36 P


SHERYLDS Posts: 17,461
6/11/14 5:27 P

I live in an area with a lot of great restaurants and I have a friend who is very weight conscious. We tend to order 1 entre and 1 salad....both of us are pretty easy going when it comes to no food issues. Ends up being good for both of us.

RIET69 SparkPoints: (47,087)
Fitness Minutes: (11,285)
Posts: 3,116
6/11/14 3:49 P

It is hard for me to find a restaurant where the food is as good and healthy as at home. However, I do enjoy going out to eat once in a while.

QUEEN-EYDIE Posts: 12,484
6/11/14 3:20 P

I'm almost always disappointed when we go to a restaurant, not to mention the weight gain the following day from all that salt!

ANDILH Posts: 1,543
6/11/14 2:51 P

I am a pretty good cook and live with someone else who is a pretty good cook, so we do tend to cook at home far more often than we go out. It's much cheaper, we know what is going into the food, and to some extent where it came from (love the farmers markets in my area that have everything!). I also have IBS, and am lactose intolerant. It's amazing how many things have some sort of dairy in them. So, because of my stomach issues I tend to prefer to eat at home. However, there are a couple of chains I will go to for a quick lunch on the go (never fast food though) that do have healthier options. I also have a ton of really good independent restaurants in my area that I may go to once a month or so.
I think if I didn't have to deal with the dishes that cooking at home makes, I would make 3 meals a day at home. I HATE dishes. emoticon

LOVE4KITTIES Posts: 4,690
6/11/14 2:17 P

Restaurant food is generally very disappointing these days. It's not healthy. It's loaded with calories and sodium. The ingredients are typically lower quality than what I would buy for home use. It's treated in ways that would make you cringe if you could actually see in the kitchens of many restaurants. A lot of it is pre-cooked (often the previous day) and then reheated.

Restaurant food is really expensive too. My hubby and I can go out and get a pizza or a couple of fast food burgers (and fries) for $15-20 and do take out (or pay a lot more to eat in a restaurant after you add on hugely overpriced iced tea and tip). OR, we can go to the store and (for example) buy a nice big tri-tip, some veggies and some sweet potatoes for the same price (and end up with a bunch of leftover tri tip to eat the next day). If I buy chicken breasts, the cost is several dollars less than for something like a tri tip and, once again, I have a bunch of leftovers.

It's really not worth it to eat at restaurants.

6/11/14 2:16 P

I am not usually impressed with eating out.

I'm a great cook and like knowing what is in my food and it is always less expensive. I also like knowing there are no roaches in my kitchen or mice. I read health department notices and those are way too common in the restaurant industry.

I do how ever enjoy food by an inspired chef. It costs more but fun and worth it for a very rare night out. these chefs know where their ingredients came from.

DANALMILLAN SparkPoints: (18,586)
Fitness Minutes: (4,566)
Posts: 162
6/11/14 2:11 P

I often check online menus or go places that have salad bars so I know I get the healthy foods I want.

HMBROWN1 Posts: 16,863
6/11/14 2:10 P

I look at the menu on line to make sure there is something I want (& can have) before going.

LIFENPROGRESS SparkPoints: (115,161)
Fitness Minutes: (18,343)
Posts: 4,287
6/11/14 1:49 P

When we go out to eat, we choose places where I can get a simple salad and maybe a piece of grilled chicken or baked potato (plain).

Chinese is good if you hold the sauces and soy sauce.

LOUNMOUN Posts: 1,334
6/11/14 1:13 P

I don't eat out often. Usually I am fine with the food I get from a restaurant though.
Last time I got a chicken sandwich from a restaurant I was surprised by how bland it was. It was edible but not exactly yummy.

NSKYLINE115 SparkPoints: (50,453)
Fitness Minutes: (1,256)
Posts: 808
6/11/14 11:22 A

I agree about the health... even when you order a side of veggies, they mix in butter

MANDIETERRIER1 Posts: 17,529
6/11/14 10:42 A

Restaurant food is just not any good. At least not anymore.

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,433
6/11/14 10:27 A

Yeah, I am SUPER picky about which restaurants I will go to - and my list keeps diminishing. At first, my main reason for rejecting a place would be "lack of suitable options that supported my healthy eating plan" but now it's extended beyond that. The less I eat out, the more I cook at home. The more I cook at home, the better a cook I've become. Now when I eat at a restaurant, I can't help but compare what they serve me to what I could have made at home.... and the restaurant rarely wins! And then I get the bill..... and it's 2, 3, 5 or 10x more expensive than what it would have cost me to make a better version myself......

So now, I only go to restaurants that are a) of good quality (this rules out most of the chains) and b) offer foods that I can't easily make at home.

Which means there's about 3 places I'll eat at, anymore.

6/11/14 9:27 A

My town is rapidly opening up quite a few new restaurants. It has been hit or miss so far. I agree sometimes it is better if I just cook a healthy meal at home.

JAMIRBLAZE Posts: 1,808
6/11/14 9:10 A

I'm usually disappointed in the lack of healthy options, and the sameness of a lot of the food. For the most part, I'd rather eat in. However, I'm fortunate to live in an area with a lot of small chains or independent places that have great Indian, pizza, BBQ, etc. My guy is big into eating out, but we've agreed to limit it to once per week.

But, yes, for the most part, my cooking is better, and there are plenty of times when I would rather have a PB sandwich than eat out.

ROBBIEY SparkPoints: (415,436)
Fitness Minutes: (135,825)
Posts: 12,929
6/11/14 8:19 A

I prefer to cook my own food instead of eating out. It is hard to find good healthy food at restaurants. I eat out very seldom because I know what I am getting when I prepare my own food, plus it saves a lot of money. I only visit fast food places when I am on the road for a long trip and it is absolutely necessary.

LEC358 SparkPoints: (11,135)
Fitness Minutes: (6,555)
Posts: 2,744
6/11/14 8:13 A

I also do my best to avoid chain restaurants like the plague. I also tend to order things, when I do eat out, that I know I would never make for myself.

Though to be fair, I found some pretty terrible restaurants (both independent and chain) when I was living in London.

EXNOLA Posts: 317
6/11/14 8:10 A

It depends on the restaurant. I don't go to chains all that often and when I do, I pretty much know what to expect. When we go to "family" restaurants with huge menus and no specialty we are almost always disappointed. Some are worse than others. We went to one a month or so ago when our favorite restaurant was closed and the food was much worse than I would make at home. It was like they had a 10 year old in the kitchen preparing the food- corned beef has out of a can, kraft singles for cheese, nothing even remotely fresh or cooked in the restaurant! Bleh.
There are a few places around us with outstanding food, though. They have fresh food and great recipes. Those are our go to places.

6/11/14 5:40 A

Presume you live in the US? I had a few good meals out there, but mostly it was huge portions of dismal food. You can find bad food in London, but not often, unless you go to the chains. Why not try independent restaurants - much better in my opinion.

LADYCJM SparkPoints: (57,456)
Fitness Minutes: (36,342)
Posts: 2,545
6/10/14 10:00 P

Anyone else disappointed with meals when eating out?

Lately it seems like I would be happier if I made the same meal at home.

For example, I was out shopping with my daughter and she was hungry. So we stop for lunch and I order tomato basil soup and half a grilled bacon, tomato and cheese sandwich.

I've made better grilled cheese at home and I could have opened the can of soup myself for half the price!

I ordered stir fry veggies with shrimp, hold the squash. The shrimp was mealy and they replaced the squash with green pepper, which I also don't like and should have asked them to hold. The sauce was better then I would have made but the rest of the dish wasn't that good.

A couple of chain places have had some really good steak or seafood dishes but it seems like with a few exceptions I'm disappointed.

How about you? Are you finding good meals?

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