Celebrating Eating Healthy Again - Week 3 - Celebrating Life with Paula Blog at Allrecipes.com - 283510

Celebrating Life with Paula

Celebrating Eating Healthy Again - Week 3 
Sep. 6, 2012 8:33 am 
Updated: Sep. 18, 2012 7:06 pm

I become easily bored with the same foods, so that is why you may have noticed that I am always trying new recipes. Lately, I've been on a quest to find new breakfast recipes - smoothies, oatmeal, grits, french toast. Whatever I can find. One night I was doing a search for cottage cheese, trying to broaden its horizons, when I came across this cream cheese spread. What a find for breakfast!

Cinnamon and Raisin Spread (I figured 2 T = 1 PP) - I used fat-free everything, omitted the sugar for Splenda, and threw it all in the food processor. Then I spread it on a toasted Bagel Thin. Delicious!

Dominican Style Oatmeal (3.5 PP using skim milk and no sugar) - This is a creamy oatmeal which can easily be altered to suit your taste with more/less cinnamon, nutmeg, or sugar.

Carrot-Raisin Salad (Bunny Salad) (less than 4 PP for half the recipe, with my changes) - I cut the recipe in half and used fat-free vanilla yogurt, decreased the cinnamon considerably (1/2 tsp.), and omitted the walnuts. I'm trying to eat more veggies. I ended up eating all three servings for my lunch for about 4 PP! It reminded me of fall for some reason.

Chocolate-Banana Shake (maybe 3 PP) - a nice afternoon drink and a cold, creamy chocolate fix. I omitted the Splenda. It didn't need it.

Really Simple Rice (4 PP) - a gourmet rice recipe

Three Ingredient Green Bean Casserole (7 PP as written) - I would make this next time using fat free Catalina Dressing, and that would lower the points. In fact, I make something that tastes similar - Green Bean Bundles.  I bundle up whole green beans using a half piece of bacon. I secure each one with a toothpick. Then I put fat free Catalina Dressing over the top of each bundle. I bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. This is a fancy dish for special occasions, fit for company.

Healthier Annie's Fruit Salsa and Cinnamon Chips (7 PP as written) - I love this salsa! I use Smucker's Simply Fruit All Raspberry Spread. I even use the left-over fruit on vanilla yogurt for breakfast or a light dessert.

Mexicali Pasta Salad (6 PP) - This is a unique rotini salad that would be perfect to carry to a Mexican potluck. I made it about 6 hours before dinner, but it was even better the next day even though it was a bit dryer. I did use fat free Zesty Italian Dressing.

Emerald Green Smoothie (0 PP) - This is a personal recipe Baker Bee suggested to me in the comments section of my last blog. It's delicious, even though to me it's more like a thick dessert or a sweet fruit soup. Perhaps that's because I used a blender and not a Vitamix. Even though fruit is zero points, I do realize I probably won't lose weight eating five of these every day! I wouldn't normally eat 4 fruits and 1 vegetable in one sitting, so I am being conscious of how many smoothies I drink.

Mini Ham and Cheese Rolls (4 PP) - These little gems are delicious, and I didn't even use all the butter on the tops!

Mother-In-Law Eggs (2 PP) - I loved these eggs and was hoping they would be my new go-to recipe. But my family prefers the ones with pickle relish that I've made for 38 years :(

Cream of Tomato Soup (3 PP) - I'm always looking for EASY lunch recipes, and this one fits that description. It is a base recipe and needs help, but that's easy enough to do. I didn't like the onion bits, so I pureed them once the soup was made and also added some Splenda and garlic powder. This soup was even better the second day.

Veggie Fajitas (1 PP) - My husband and I went with friends for Mexican one night this week and had some beef and chicken fajita meat left over. So at home one night, he ate the left-over meat on his fajita, but I also supplemented with these veggie fajitas (I ate just the veggies on my fajita). What an easy and healthy dinner! I even liked the lemon pepper seasoning on them.

This last recipe is one I made for a family dinner for 12 one night this week. I don't usually have dessert around, so I wanted to make one, but I wanted it to be light. I decided to lighten up Vanilla and Chocolate Delight by using all fat-free and reduced fat items. I made the crust by the recipe but used fat-free cream cheese, reduced fat Cool Whip, and sugar free instant vanilla and chocolate puddings in the other layers. It turned out good and surely fewer than 10 PP, which is what the original recipe is per serving!

Well, no weight lost this week, but I didn't gain either. So that's good. I decided to up my walking to 1.5 miles and my husband and I are biking again. I'm going easy with that, though, and riding only 1.5 miles for now. I'm being consistent in my exercise and feeling better and better because of it.

Please let me know how you're doing, and as always, leave me some good recipes.

Sep. 6, 2012 9:01 am
Your photos are amazing, Paula! Thanks once again for this blog!
Sep. 6, 2012 9:32 am
Hello, Paula! My family doesn't like it if I change such things as deviled eggs or potato salad. So, I know how it is. I decided I could reserve a small amount for me on the deviled eggs and make it the low cal way and then make the rest the way I usually do. It works for me! Keep up the great meals. I am taking my 4 year old granddaughter to school and then I volunteer in my daughter's class for three days a week. I will get back to you on a recipe tomorrow!
Sep. 6, 2012 9:37 am
your pictures are lovely,interesting reading.
Sep. 6, 2012 9:44 am
Hi Paula! Just a note regarding your comment on the green smoothie. I, too, am on WW . . . and I was confused when I first rejoined regarding the whole fruits are zero points deal. We got into an extensive discussion at our weekly meeting regarding fruits and smoothies (because I opened my big mouth and asked!) Anyways, my leader said that whenever you make a smoothie, you need to build the recipe through recipe builder on e-tools in order to calculate the points accurately. I have a Vitamix, and make a lot of smoothies, which I originally wasn't counting the points if it was just fruit & ice that I was using. Came to find out that most of the smoothies that I was making should actually have been counted as anywhere from 3-5 points each! Now I run everything through recipe builder (which is a pain, but I know that I am building my recipe box "favorites" in WW e-tools for this new lifestyle. Do you use e-tools?
Sep. 6, 2012 12:22 pm
Thanks for stopping by Marianne, Lela, and manella. I'm trying to get better with my photography. I've still got a long way to go, but I am enjoying it.
Sep. 6, 2012 12:29 pm
Kim, I have asked my WW leader several times about building recipes using fruits and veggies. Every time she tells me they are 0 points. It made no sense to me that the on line recipe builder included points for them if that was the case. Thank you for the information. So when DO fruits and veggies count as 0 points?
Sep. 6, 2012 1:36 pm
Love your pics!! Doesn't it feel so good to be eating healthy? One of my favorite healthy recipes on this site is "Braised Balsamic Chicken." So delicious!! Also, here is the link to one of my personal recipes: http://allrecipes.com/personalrecipe/62873444/creamy-banana-soft-serve/detail.aspx
Have a great week:D
Sep. 6, 2012 1:59 pm
Grainfreegirl, thanks for that chicken recipe. It looks good and will certainly work well with my way of eating now. I have already saved your banana soft serve. Have got to try it sometime soon. Thanks so much for the recipe suggestions.
Sep. 6, 2012 5:51 pm
Paula - Our leader told us that the on-line recipe builder takes into consideration the TOTAL fat, carbs, fiber and protein of all of the ingredients that you put together first, and then calculates the points plus value based on that information. Basically, if you eat an apple or a banana for a snack, it's 0 points. If you put 2 or more ingredients together, in order to calculate an accurate PP value, you need to run it through recipe builder. I was so confused about this when I rejoined, so I asked a lot of questions (specifically about smoothies, because I had just got my Vitamix and was on a smoothie kick for weeks)!
Sep. 6, 2012 5:58 pm
Hi Paula, as usual nice blog. When I did WW, I developed the recipe below. It's very yummy. I ran it through "recipe builder" and it came up ZERO pp. We had the very same discussion at our meeting one time that KIMSCOOKINGNOW talks about above. Apparently there IS a difference when you "chew" your fruits and veggies rather than drink them. I still made my smoothie and I lost weight.
Sep. 6, 2012 5:58 pm
Sep. 6, 2012 6:19 pm
Sorry Candice - but I just ran your recipe through recipe builder in Weight Watchers eTools, and it came out to 10 point plus per serving! This is the new Point Plus system, which is new to 2012. When did you do WW?
Sep. 6, 2012 6:53 pm
Thanks, Kim. The information you gave me is so helpful! I think from now on with smoothies, I'll just use the nutritional stats and figure up the pointsplus using the handy dandy calculator, which is what I do with all the other recipes.
Sep. 6, 2012 6:55 pm
Candice, that fruit smoothie looks good, but I believe if I make it, I'll make sure it's more than one serving :)
Sep. 6, 2012 7:22 pm
You're pics are inspiring. Keep determined, you're doing great.
Sep. 6, 2012 7:30 pm
Thank you so much, Seekery. I love encouragers like you!
Sep. 6, 2012 8:32 pm
Kim, it was in 2010. I should have said that. Sorry. Wowzer, 10 pp! That would've been almost 1/2 of my points. I got 22/day. It's still a very delish smoothie! Thanks.... I think. LOL!!!
Sep. 7, 2012 6:03 am
Paula - I think you are doing a great job, which is why I am following your blog on your journey with WW. You have given me a lot of great ideas for meals and snacks. I just wanted to share what I had learned from my meeting . . . and Candice, your smoothie recipe sounds great too! I've done many like that, but I think the key to the "new" weight watchers plan is portion control. Now, I try to keep my smoothies to 8 oz., rather than a big glass which is probably closer to 14 oz.! Last week I was down 3.6 lbs. (I did miss a weigh in week due to a conference, so that was really a 2 week loss!) The systems works, it's just sticking to it that's the challenge! Keep the blogs coming Paula . . . we all need all of the encouragement that we can get! :)
Sep. 7, 2012 6:13 am
Paula, have you seen these snacks from Hungry Girl? Berry Nutty Twist Mix PER SERVING (1 1/2 tbsp. sweetened dried cranberries + 5 almonds + 5 mini pretzel twists): 100 calories, 3g fat, 105mg sodium, 16g carbs, 1.5g fiber, 8g sugars, 1.5g protein -- PointsPlus® value 3* 14 almonds PER SERVING (about 14 whole unsalted nuts): 100 calories, 9g fat, 0mg sodium, 3g carbs, 2g fiber, 0.5g sugars, 3.5g protein -- PointsPlus® value 3* 25 pistachios PER SERVING (about 25 dry-roasted unsalted nuts): 100 calories, 8g fat, 0mg sodium, 5g carbs, 1.75g fiber, 1g sugars, 3.5g protein -- PointsPlus® value 3* 16 Popchips PER SERVING (about 16 chips, average of all flavors): 100 calories, 3.25g fat, 235mg sodium, 16g carbs, 1g fiber, 1g sugars, 1g protein -- PointsPlus® value 3* 15 Guiltless Gourmet Tortilla Chips PER SERVING (about 15 chips, average of all flavors): 100 calories, 2g fat, 156mg sodium, 17.5g carbs, 1.5g fiber, 0g sugars, 1.5g protein -- PointsPlus® value 2* 12 hard pretzel sticks (not rods) PER SERVING (about 12 small plain sticks, average): 100 calories, 0g fat, 460mg sodium, 23g carbs, 1g fiber, 1g sugars, 2g protein -- PointsPlus® value 3* 19 hard pretzel twists PER SERVING (about 19 mini twists, average): 100 calories,
Sep. 7, 2012 7:12 am
KIM - I'm so glad the blogs help. I love cooking new recipes and crave variety in my eating, so I figure others might be out there like me. At least I hope there are and that I'm not weird or something :) LELA - I subscribe to Hungry Girl's e-mails, but often I'm so busy, I don't read them all. Thanks for the snack ideas.
Sep. 9, 2012 6:58 am
One of the reasons I've never tried Weight Watchers is the way points are calculated. As a diabetic, keeping the sugars in fruit under control is vital and I've never felt WW put enough emphasis on that. That said, I always enjoy your blogs, Paula!
Sep. 9, 2012 6:58 am
Paula-see my blog for an Easy Crispy Buffalo Chicken. http://allrecipes.com/cook/11842212/blogentry.aspx?msg=2&postid=283693#comments
Sep. 9, 2012 7:08 am
TwoSweet Pickles - I'm hoping I don't alienate people who are wanting to lose weight. I'm pretty sure most all plans work if you are eating less than you are expending. My goal is to give recipes that can be considered for losing weight and to form group encouragement. Good luck in controlling your diabetes and losing weight.
Sep. 9, 2012 7:09 am
Lela - The link won't work. Will you try again?
Sep. 9, 2012 8:24 am
I don't think your blogs are alienating anyone. I know that I seldom read blogs here, but I do enjoy yours. I think you are kind and encouraging to everyone. I have been diabetic three years and have found an eating lifestyle that works for me and my non-diabetic family. It definitely takes some effort, but once you figure it out, it's great!
Sep. 9, 2012 9:29 am
Here you go Paula! http://allrecipes.com/cook/11842212/blogentry.aspx?postid=283693
Sep. 9, 2012 5:57 pm
Hi Paula! I have followed you from a far for along time and admire your dedication to healthy eating and WW (have been on and off WW for a long time). Thank you for your creative and adventurous nature in adapting recipes that feel indulgent!! Another great blog!
Sep. 10, 2012 10:13 am
Thanks, mickdee! Sounds like we are like creatures in "being on and off WW for a long time." LOL
Sep. 13, 2012 11:40 am
Hey Paula, I just got a free e-book called Weight Watcher Whiz: Healing & Vibrant Salads and thought of you. It's got some good recipes that I'm happy to pass on if you're interested. There are about 16 recipes. I'll be back later. :o)
Sep. 13, 2012 1:51 pm
I would love to have those recipes, cheepchick! Can I get the e-book for free too? How?
Sep. 13, 2012 2:28 pm
Amazon always has a top 100 list of free books. Click on Kindle, go to books, and on the right side of the screen, there's a list of today's top 100. Just click on FREE. They change often though and that e-book isn't there anymore. I think I can actually "loan" it to you. Holler at me here~ cribber at embarqmail dot com. :o)
Sep. 18, 2012 7:06 pm
My mothers neighbour is working part time and averaging $9000 a month. I'm a single mum and just got my first paycheck for $6546! I still can't believe it. I tried it out cause I got really desperate and now I couldn't be happier. Heres what I do, Blue31.com
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About Me
I'm a wife, mother of 2, and grandmother of 6. I love to cook. I especially like to cook new and different recipes. I don't like to have the same meals week after week. My husband has decided it really doesn't matter whether he likes a new recipe or not because he won't see it again for a very long time anyway!
My favorite things to cook
I like to cook entrees and desserts. I like preparing good, down-to-earth cooking. I also decorate cakes, mostly for the grandchildren now.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Holidays bring out the traditions: chocolate chip cheese ball; crockpot chicken and dressing; and broccoli salad, sweet potatoes and butterscotch pie handed down from past generations. Another thing that must be tradition in my family: we all make new recipes when we have company! My mother, sister, daughter, and I all do this. My daddy never understood why we would risk making something we had never made before. Actually, none of us has ever served company a new recipe that didn't taste good.
My cooking triumphs
Cake decorating: wedding cakes, bridal and baby shower cakes, birthday cakes: Little Pirate, Cinderella, Elmo, Strawberry Shortcake. My friends call me Betty Crocker. When my daughter got married, she had a bridal shower where the guests were asked to write something on an apron. My best friend told her if she needed a recipe or help in the kitchen to ask her mother. If she needed a good place to eat out, ask her.
My cooking tragedies
A 4 tier huge wedding cake that fell apart at 2:00am. Thankfully, I still had time to salvage the cake.
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