I sat down with a few cookbooks, and made a grocery list.
(hey Ann Clark) used to make fun of ourselves and the fact that we ate like junior high girls. Frozen pizzas. Easy Mac. Lean Cuisines. Turkey sandwhiches. I fueled myself on these easy-as-pie quick fixes throughout my entire college experience or, should I say, when I wasn't eating the majority of my meals at the Chi Omega house. Sadly, I didn't grow out of this habit, but regressed, turning to meal bars or fruit that fit easily into my on-the-go post-grad schedule. The act of preparing a meal was reserved for get-togethers with friends, complete with appetizers and wine, and I rarely used my measuring cups unless I was preparing to bake a treat for friends or co-workers.
But, not anymore.
One of my goals for my 25th year (you'll hear a lot about these in the next few weeks, as I've kickstarted changing a few aspects of my routine) is to put thought, time, and effort into changing my meal plan to not only be low-calorie, but actually nutritious and fuel for my body—Lean Cuisines not included.
Pinterest had a lot to offer me, of course. A few I stockpiled ingredients for at the grocery:
Skinny Chicken Enchiladas (this site is my fave):
Oven "fried" pickles (the Mississippi girl in me rejoices):
Baked tomatoes (this link also has tons of under 200-calories yummy options):
Everything-but-the-kitchen sink salads (multiple combos here):
- Hungry Girl: quick, easy, low-calorie options to all your favorite foods—that will leave you stuffed. I love how it's divided into what you'd like to eat: soups, salads, "fast food fakes", sweets, and even a chapter on "man food."
- The Best of Cooking Light: more complex recipes that take more time and preparation, but the outcome is fantastic. I'll use this the next time we have multiple dinner guests—they'll never know the meal is low-cal.
- Skinny Meals: a nice mix of easy and impressive, there are quick meals and ones that take more effort, suitable for even the pickiest palate. No hard-to-find ingredients or unusual pairings found here.
Moral of the story: don't be surprised if I get super excited about upcoming foodie accomplishments and start featuring a few recipes here on the ole blog. If you have a few favorite sites, or a favorite cookbook, I'd love to here your recommendations—newbies love advice!