Tag Archives: water

Non Stick Fry Pans – a Dieter’s Best Friend

As part of FoodBuzz Daily Specials, I’ll be making a some special posts over the next couple of weeks that relate to a specific topic. Today’s special is about Non Stick Fry Pans.

Many people watching their diets think that fried food is off limits. But this isn’t so ! The act of frying is not unhealthy – it is all the oil typically used when frying something that causes a meal to become high in fats and calories.

A good non stick pan is essential and with it, you can continue to enjoy pan fried meats and eggs, sauteed veggies, caramelized onions and more.

The 2 things you need so that you can use as little oil as possible are Pam spray (or similar item) and water.

Pam is great when frying eggs, pan searing meats and fish, and when sauteing vegetables. When it comes to sauteing peppers or potatoes, some people give up because they can get dried out when you use just Pam. But I have a secret 🙂 Just add a tablespoonful of very hot water when you see the food is drying out. When caramelizing onions or frying up peppers and onions, I sometimes add as much as 4-5 T of water throughout the cooking period. It is a GREAT calorie saver. And all this would NOT be possible if you didn’t have a good non stick pan on hand. I have a few in different sizes and could not live without them.

Here are a few recipes that just could not be made without a non stick pan:

Open Faced Egg and Bacon Sandwich
Bacon, Egg and Cheese Muffin
Turkey and Stuffing
Orange Ginger Chicken

Blondies and Maple Sauce

The good folks at PlentifulPantry sent me a couple of their dessert mixes to try and here is the second installment….Chidester Farms Blondies with Maple Sauce. The mix makes is sooooo simple to whip up a batch in no time and the blondies were very good – but what made this dessert GREAT is the maple sauce !! IT was rich and sweet without going overboard. It is a perfect sauce – I want to buy it and put in on EVERYTHING 🙂

Blondies and Maple Sauce
Blondies and Maple Sauce

The big box comes with enough ingredients to make 2 batches – 2 batches would fit in a 9×13 baking dish while 1 fits nicely in an 8×8 baking dish. This is as simple as putting together a cake mix – – simple, simple, simple . And the blondies….oh they just melt in your mouth !

Blondies and Maple Sauce mix
Blondies and Maple Sauce mix

As well as the mix, you will need a few ingredients:
¼ c water
1/3 c vegetable oil
2 eggs

1 batch yields 12 servings
250 calories per serving

Just follow the package instructions and then sit by the oven and wait – because you want to dig into these as quick as humanly possible !

Try serving with some lite vanilla ice cream or some whipped topping.

Be sure to visit PlentifulPantry and check out their products – they have a whole bunch of ‘partially prepped’ products that get you out of the kitchen faster without skimping on quality. This is also available this month at Costco – so be sure to get some and put the sauce in your coffee, on your morning cereal, in your granola – and even on the blondies 🙂

The 400 Calories or Less Plan

Many nutritionists and dieticians recommend eating several small meals throughout the course of the day. It helps to keep your metabolism running and also keeps your body from going into starvation mode which totally defeats any plan (losing weight or weight maintenance).

I’ve decided that my new LIFESTYLE (not a diet!!) needs to include a meal plan that I can stick with and one that will show me results. Over the past 6 months I have been eating 400 calories or less for each meal (3 main meals and a snack) and seeing great results. I am losing weight and I just plain feel better. I know that in order to maintain a healthy weight, I need to stick with this plan. So I have created recipes and meal plans that ensure I am not feeling hungry all the time and truthfully, I rarely feel deprived (except for when I see people eating multiple slices of pizza when I can only have one – ah, pizza !!) . This plan combats cravings of all sorts because I can eat a little bit of just about anything.

Now, I could sit and eat 400 calories worth of cheese doodles as a meal (my dear friend told me this actually worked for her at one point in her life), but the better thing to do is make sure you are eating balanced meals.

I make sure that my day includes proteins (meat, fish, beans), veggies and fruit, high calcium dairy and I could not live without carbs. I now eat whole grain breads and pastas, but they are still in my meals in smaller amounts – I could not live without them.

I also add in monounsaturated fats (these are the good fats) with several of my meals each day…the theory being that they a: help bad fats retreat from your body and b: they help you feel more satisfied. Examples of monounsaturated fats are olive oil, olives, avocados, nuts and seeds, dark chocolate – – and while high in calories, I do notice that when I skip them to add in extra pasta or bread instead, I don’t see as good weight loss results that week.

And finally, here are a few things that I have learned along the way:

Drink lotsa water: I am not good at this – I have to struggle to get down 3 glasses of water a day. I try and entice myself by adding stuff to a pitcher of water and giving it a bit of natural flavor. One day I add lemon or lime slices (orange is nice too). The next I add some sliced fresh ginger. The next I add some spearmint leaves and a few drops of mint extract. If I keep it changed up, I find I am more apt to want a glass.

Sit and savor your food: Taste each bit that goes into your mouth. Smell it. Look at it. Don’t just woof it down in front of a TV because before you know it, it’s gone and you’re wondering where it went and you are still feeling hungry. I know it sounds corny, but it is sooooooo true !

Split up the snacks in a different way each day and according to how your body feels: I always try to eat my 3 main meals the same times each day. But my snacks….times change and so does how I split them up. One day I may be hungrier in the mid afternoon and have a 200 calorie snack before I start cooking dinner (so I am not picking while cooking) and then have my other 200 calories in the evening. Some days I have a lighter dinner and then want a heavier snack in the evening. Some days I am dying of hunger at 10 am even though I ate a good breakfast at 8. Be flexible with yourself and divvy up those snacks thoughtfully and they will help you get through the day !

Cheat day: Everybody needs a cheat day. I plan one in once a week. I have gone hog crazy and eaten wings and several slices of pizza on the same day – and then I end up paying for it. After months of a healthy diet, my body does not know what to do when bombarded with a lot of fat and I end up with stomach distress. So I have learned and now I try and keep it a little more sane. Instead of going crazy, I use my cheat day to have a glass of wine (or 2 or 3) without having to put it into my calorie counter. And since I often go out on cheat day, it is more just a day to give myself a break from cooking, but I try to order sensibly and not stuff myself.

Eating out: It is very hard to find a place out where you can get a meal that fits into 400 calories. Asian restaurants are a good bet, especially if you stick with fish dishes and stay away from fried egg rolls. You can find calories counts for many chain restaurants and it’s very discouraging. If you’re a restaurateur and want a partner for a ‘healthy food’ restaurant, let me know !! 🙂

Count your calories: I use a mobile phone app. A plain old notebook and pencil will do just as well, though ! When you are actively counting your calories, you are much more apt to stay within them. Yes, even that one bite off your kid’s plate has to be accounted for in the log 🙂

Related Posts with Thumbnails