Purpose of this blog is for me to try out recipes from my Weight Watchers cookbooks and hopefully I can find some really yummy, low point recipes to share. But this site is NOT an official Weight Watchers site.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Chocolate Peanut butter Balls- 3 balls for 2 pts

Through pinterest I found this post on the blog Peace, Love, and Low Carb. Its for low-carb peanut butter balls. Calculating her recipe out they are 34 calories per ball (when making 25 balls out of one recipe).
Talking to my husband, we discussed the differences between thoughts on eating "healthy" On various diets, and how they conflict. And when I say "diet" I mean a lifestyle they choose to eat. Everyone has their definition of what is healthy. To my sister, she lives on an 'organic', 'sugar-free' and 'no artificial sweeteners diet. For her family it doesn't matter how high in calories something is, only that it is all natural and sugar-free. When you follow a low-calorie diet (like Weight Watchers) it can sometimes be in direct opposite goals with low-carb diet (ie Adkins). Sometimes they can be perfectly in line with the choices of food. There are items that are LOW calorie but HIGH carbs and other things that are LOW carbs but HIGH calories. A specific example of this is Heavy Whipping cream. It is HIGH in calorie but very low carb. I used evaporated milk instead. So after them making them, I am sure that it would make up just fine using whatever milk you have. (have since used milk and YES it works just fine)

In this recipe she uses an Adkin's pre-made milkshake as the milk. Its a low carb milk. It is more calories than 'normal' milks, but less than her suggested option of heavy whipping cream. I knew that heavy whipping cream was used instead of milk because it is lower in carbs, but I wasn't sure if this recipe really needs the whipping cream. Using heavy cream 66 calories each.
What you need:
4 oz. Low-fat Cream Cheese
8 oz. of some sort of milk
1 box Sugar Free Chocolate Pudding (I used the small box)
4 TBS Peanut Butter (recommend chunky)

2 TBS chopped almonds
How to make it.
Mix cream cheese and milk of choice, in a large mixing bowl with a mixer on low speed until cream cheese is well blended and there are no chunks left. Add the packet of sugar free pudding and the peanut butter. Mix until well blended. It will become very thick. Line a plate/pan with wax paper. Scoop mixture little balls (I used a one TBS scoop, flattening out each scoop and using a spoon to push it out of the tablespoon) and put them on the wax paper. Take a pinch of the chopped almonds and push them onto the top of the ball. Place them in the freezer to set. They need about an hour to set enough to eat. Once hardened place in an enclosed container.
In previous blogger said that she can make 50 balls out of batch. I barely got 25 balls. The blogger must have made them about 1 tsp size balls.

based on a serving size of 25 balls per batch
Here is the break down:
Using the Adkins shake
calories: 34, fat: 2.6, fiber: .5
using heavy cream
calories: 66.5, fat: 6, fiber: 0
using fat-free evaporated milk
calories: 36, fat: 2, fiber: 0
using fat-free milk
calories: 31, fat: 2, fiber: 0

Using milk (non-cream options) you can eat 3 for 2 points on the old systems. Also another good thing about them is eating 3 is way more than you're going to want to eat. By the third one you'll be done -they are that rich and filling. So the rest of them aren't going to call to you for the rest of the night.

NOTE: I have made these many times since and milk works just fine.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Carrot Stew 3pts

The last time we were up in Mesa we had dinner at my sister's house with her family. In the summer they eat vegetarian. She said they were having "Carrot Stew" for dinner. "oh great I thought a veggie soup in the summer for dinner". But even before I could express my thoughts aloud she assured me that it is so good. And she was right. It was so very good. I asked for the recipe and she told me I could find it on her vegetarian meals board on pinterest.

Her pin took me to this site http://coppeefamily.blogspot.com/2011/12/carrot-stew.html. Take a look and read her story about Carrot Stew. I enjoyed it.

Anyway, this has been a hit with my family. From my husband to our toddler to our almost 1 year old twin girls. It can be served pipping hot for cold days, just a little warm if you don't like cold soup, or its even still tasty as a chilled soup.
I have made only a couple of suggestions and a few changes.

6 carrots (about 1/2 pound)
3 potatoes (small to medium)
4 celery stalks
1 small onion
1 TBS garlic
Dill -I didn't have Dill we substituted Thyme
Parsley- didn't have parsley substituted Marjoram
4 Chicken bouillon cubes
Peel carrots and sparingly peel potatoes (all the vitamins you get from potatoes are in the skin, do yourself a favor and leave at least some of them there) and put them in a pot to boil.
Finely chop onion and celery and saute in a sprayed pan with garlic (It will add flavor to use butter, the original recipe calls for 2 tbs of butter, if you want to add this make sure to adjust your calories. As for me I used cooking spray). Add dill, parsley, salt and pepper as desired (about 1 to 2 tsp each of dill and parsley)
When everything is soft, its time to put into the blender. Spoon in carrots and potatoes, then celery and onion mixture, then carrots and potatoes and celery and onion mixture, back and forth until the blender is filled (It takes me 2 full blenders with my blender). Puree everything and dump into a bigger pot. (I always spoon in some of the water from the carrot and potato water to the blender so the vegetables will blend up nice and creamy). Do this until everything has been pureed.
Once everything is in the pot, add a little water until creamy soup is the desired thickness (or thinness - I prefer mine a little thicker and creamier). Add chicken bouillon while soup is simmering. Salt and pepper as desired.

Serving a bread side is a perfect complement. 
I didn't calculate the calories or points, but if you wanted to make it a full meal all in itself you can add cooked lentils to it. As it stands the whole soup (if you were to eat every last drop yourself, has ~800 calories, 2.6 grams of fat, and 35 g of fiber. If made into 4 servings that makes it ~200 calories per serving, <1 g of fat, and 8.75 g fiber.

total calories: 800
4 servings- ~1 1/2cups is one serving. 
calories per serving: 200
fat: <1
fiber: 8.75

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Raw Peanut Butter Ball Cookies- 1pt each

These are fast to make up, but then need about 30 minutes in the freezer before eating.

Raw Balls
2 TBS Peanut Butter
1 TBS powdered milk
2 TBS chopped almonds
2 TBS oats
2 TBS honey

*if you don't want to use peanut butter you can substitute with Almond Butter or Nutella, same amount and will be approximately the same calories and points. Also if you don't have powdered milk you can use oat flour or add 1 more TBS of chopped almonds or oats.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Roll into balls. Makes 8-10 balls. Place balls on freezable surface (plate, cookies sheet, plastic container). Place in freezer for 30 minutes- 1 hour prior to serving (until hard enough to hold, but soft enough to eat). Once taken out of the freezer they will hold together for about 45 minutes before they are too soft again and will need to be refrozen.
Also if you're a raw food eater, this is considered an acceptable "raw" food. It is also a good recipe for those with food allergies (dairy, peanut, gluten) with minimal changes. I made them for my friend's son, who is allergic to peanuts, dairy, gluten, soy... and a ton of other things) I omitted the powdered milk and oats, used almond butter instead of peanut butter, and 3 times the amount of almonds and an extra tsp of honey. Turned out great.
8 servings Calories: 48, Fat: 2.5g, Fiber: 1g

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Sugar-Free Homemade Honey BBQ sauce

BBQ sauce is so expensive considering how cheap it is to make.
I tried my hand at making my own for my pulled pork recipe. This is only sugar-free as far as honey has natural sugar in it still.

Sugar-Free Honey Homemade BBQ sauce
1/4 c water
1/4 c Worcester Sauce
2 TBS vinegar
1 small can Tomato Sauce (no salt preferred)
1 TBS Honey (more if you like that honey taste but calories count is for only one)
2 TBS Dijon Mustard
1 TBS corn starch
1 tsp garlic powder *optional if you want the garlic taste or sprinkle straight on the meat
1-2 TBS Splenda or Stiva (as you see needed, DO THIS LAST, once removed from the heat)

In a small sauce pan mix in slowly each item mixing with a whisk on a low heat EXCEPT for the sugar substitute!
Once all added, thickening, and boiling remove from heat, let cool a little add sugar substitute and then place on meat for marinading. 

Disclaimer I have never used without slow cooking or marinading the meat. Have not used straight on the meat.
It makes almost 2 cups of BBQ sauce.
The whole thing is: 214 calories and 3.7g fiber 
I use it to cover pulled pork, it fully flavors 8 servings of pulled pork, adding 27 calories per serving to the calories of the pork.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Guilt Free Chocolate Chip Cookies- 2 cookies for 1(old) ww point

photo of "world's Healthiest Chocolate Chip" used from chocolatecoveredkate.com- thanks
I love Chocolate Covered Kate's blog. She is a Vegan, but takes into consideration that there are different needs when eating healthy. I like that she has such a range of "healthy" recipes.
This one I made a few tweeks to but for the most part it is Kate's "World's Healthiest Chocolate Chip" recipe. 
My version of the 'Guilt Free Chocolate Chip Cookies'

Guilt Free Chocolate Chip Cookies
1/3 c flour
1/4 c oat flour (take oats and grind them in a grinder or blender, I do a cup or so at a time and store what I don't use.)
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 c chocolate chips
1 TBS brown sugar 
2 TBS white sugar substitute (Splenda, Stevia)- add more as you feel it needs to sweeten
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 tsp oil
1 TBS apple sauce
2 TBS skim milk 

Mix all up scoop mixed dough and roll into a ball. Place balls on cookie sheet. If you want a flat cookie look, press ball down flat. Cook for about 8 minutes. Be very careful not to over cook. They taste burnt before they fully look burnt.
Makes 14 small cookies (apx 1tsp ball). Calories: 27 fat: 2g fiber: 1g
That's 685 calories if you eat the WHOLE thing yourself.
That's 1 point for 2 cookies under the old ww system. Woohoo
You can get more fiber for   the same number of calories by using entirely oat flour.

Warning to Remember: ONLY do ONE batch at a time. I don't recommend doubling or tripling this   recipe. I can't explain why, but any time I do I loose cookies. The dough just doesn't go as far and I end up with a cookie missing (and I did not eat it by eating the dough). The other day I doubled it and was only able to get 22 cookies out of the dough. For the 4th of July I tried to triple it and lost 5 cookies. For each cookie you lose that means those calories are in the other cookies and it is no longer as "guilt free" to eat.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Many uses of Chicken

How many of you have noticed the cost of beef getting so expensive? So beef isn't only more expensive than chicken and pork but it it has always been one of the more fatty meats to eat.
Given these two facts my family has been eating more chicken.  I don't prefer to eat chicken. I love beef. One reason I'm not as thrilled with chicken for dinner is growing up we only ate chicken whole pieces. There was too little variety in chicken. I am learning to use chicken in more ways. The up side of that is I've learned chicken is really versatile.
Shredded: Mexican dishes, soups, Hawaiian Haystacks, bbq, sandwiches
An advantage of shredded chicken is that it can be used in any recipe that required any other shredded meat (beef or pork). It also does not require as much chicken as other dishes when using large pieces of meat. Shredded meats also complement beans and rice mixed into the dish well, its a tip
chopped up and stove top grilled or boiled: stir fry, pastas, baked dishes, salads
Grilled or baked whole: salads, traditional chicken meals.

Ground Chicken: any recipe you'd use other ground meats. Meatloaf, meatballs, pasta, sausage, tacos, Stroganoffs. Ground chicken can be really expensive to purchase.
We recently purchased a Kitchen Aid meat grinder attachment. Its about $60. There are sales every once in a while on amazon or Macy's. It is so worth the cost. Then when boneless, skinless, chicken breasts are crazy cheap. I buy as much as the limit will let me.
Then I bring it home and cut it in strips. 
 I grind it right then and there before putting it in the fridge or freezer.
I then weigh it out in half pound amounts.  
Then bag each 1/2 pound and double bag a few together.
All ready to go for making those ground meat meals.
Make sure that you clean the your grinder as soon as you're done, do not let the meat sit on it.
Again I want to say it can be used in anything you'd use the ground beef, turkey, or pork.
Add the right seasonings and it tastes the same in the recipe as the beef, and it has the same texture.
Also if you're a lentil adder to make your meat go further, its easier to add lentils and hide them in ground meats over shredded or other. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Peanut Butter (Reeses) bars (8pts per serving)

Do you remember those Peanut Butter Bars that you got at the school cafeteria with lunch on rare occasions? I do and they were my absolute favorite. I loved them and craved them and they were so wonderful. On pinterest I have been seeing them EVERYWHERE, being repined. One of my favorite recipes of this repin is from Baker Lady she explains it well, easy to read, ect. Click on her name to go to her version of this recipe.
I tried them- super yummy, but very calorie heavy so I set out to adapt her recipe. Before you judge that 8 points per serving I want to point out a few things.
the Original recipe--
12 servings
calories per serving: 535 (fat and fiber not calculated)
super crazy for one dessert
I tried my hardest to bring down that number
my adjusted recipe--
12 servings
calories with all sugar substitutes: 310  fat: 5 g
calories halfsugar/half subs: 330 fat: 5 g fiber: 1

huge difference when you look at it that way but not a diet friendly dessert but better than the original.

here are my changes:

  • 1/2 c unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 c melted butter/margarine
  • 1 c oats (grounded in blender)
  • 1 c finely ground graham crackers (blend your own or use the pre-made stuff)
  • 1 c confectioners sugar substitute (made in blender: 3 TBS splenda, 6 TBS dry powdered milk, 6 TBS cornstarch.)
  • 1 c confectioners sugar or an additional 1 c of above substitute
  • 3/4 c peanut butter
  • topping: 2 TBS peanut butter, 3/4 c semi sweet chocolate chips
blend up you oats and graham crackers
blend your sugar substitute
Mix them together.
Mix in apple sauce, then add the butter,
finally the peanut butter.
 smooth it out over in a 9 x13 in pan.
melt chips and mix with 
2 TBS of peanut butter
smooth is over the peanut butter base
chill in the fridge for 1 hour min.
Photo of my son eating the peanut butter base, He wanted more.
They were even approved by my anti-any-Low-calorie-low-fat food father, but they aren't exactly low calorie. Its hard with peanut butter of that magnitude and only 12 servings. 
Now if you are looking for something similar but not as heavy on the peanut butter there is a cake/bar like dessert. I have made this one many times and its a great treat.
Along with that I found this lower-calorie option for it that is lower than mine- only if you're looking at the serving size and pan size. This serving size makes 36 servings in a 15 x 10 in pan. 
the nutritional info-- 
calories: 237 fat: 8g fiber: 2g
still not as low as I'd like. I will have to look at it and try some things and see if I can take this recipe to an even lower calorie level.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bread 2 pts per serving

Found this on pinterest and made it. My husband thought it was AWESOME win.
I made a few adjustments.
I didn't calculate my changes, but the original recipe is just under 1000 calories for the WHOLE loaf. A serving size is 1/14 of the loaf so 100 calories or 2 old wwpts. The original recipe is from Sunday Baker, go there to find the unchanged recipe.
Here is my changed recipe:

  • 1 1/2 c pumpkin
  • 1/2 c unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 2 TBS flax meal and 1/4 water (or 3 egg whites) 
  • 2/3 c Flour
  • 1/2 c sugar substitute (stevia, spenda)
  • 3 Tbs Honey
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
Cream Cheese filling
  • 1 pkg 8 oz reduce fat
  • 1/4 c sugar (or sugar substitute) 
  • 1 TBS flour
  • 2 egg whites or 1 whole egg (whipped well)
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Monday, March 12, 2012

Pasta with Chicken Sausage pts4 (230 calories)

yes I over cooked my zucchini, but my pasta looks tasty
Pasta with Chicken Sausage
I have been buying Andouille sausage (sausage seasoned with Creole seasonings) for making gumbo. I had some left over from the last batch of gumbo I made. There are a number of brands out there that make a chicken Andouille flavor sausages. This is the one I used, Open Nature Smoked Andouille Chicken sausage.
I had some things left over and needed to use it up.
Here is the recipe I used-
  • 4 servings of whole wheat pasta (read your box)
  • 3 links chicken sausage
  • 1 cup Pasta sauce
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 medium red sweet pepper
instruction- Start by heating water and cooking up the pasta. Cook up the chicken sausage, then cook up onion and red pepper until soften. Drain cooked pasta, add onions, red peppers, and sauce. Toss together and serve. 
quick easy and a healthy serving. 
Suggested sides: asparagus, zucchini, green beans, okra

serves 6
Calories: 230 per serving, fat: 5.3g, fiber: 5 g
old ww pts: 4 per serving

Monday, February 13, 2012

Vanilla Nutella Cupcakes - (as low as 1pt each cupcake)

I found these through pinterest. I adapted it from this site's recipe.
Here is their recipe: 

Self-frosting Nutella Cupcakes
adapted from these ones.
1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup canola or mild vegetable oil
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4-1/2 cup Nutella, at room temperature
Preheat the oven to 325F.
In a medium bowl, beat the butter, oil and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until smooth.
In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt; add to the butter mixture and beat on low speed just until combined. The batter will be thick. It needs to be in order to swirl in the Nutella!
Divide the batter between 12 paper-lined muffin cups. Drop a spoonful of Nutella on top of each, and swirl through the batter with the tip of a bamboo skewer, knife or other pointy object. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until springy to the touch. Tilt them in the pan to help them cool. Makes a dozen cupcakes.
The recipe as is- 12 cupcakes is 229 calories each cupcake or 30 mini cupcakes 92 calories. Or for 12 cupcakes is 5 points each or 30 mini cupcakes is 2 points each (under the old point system).
I made some adjustments to the recipe to cut out as many calories and as much fat as possible. 

Vanilla Nutella Cupcakes (Self-frosting Nutella Cupcakes)
1/2 c Applesauce (no sugar added)
3/4 c sugar
2 eggs
1 TBS flax meal
4 TBS water
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 c flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 c Nutella (no added to mixture)
Mix all but the Nutella in a bowl. Use paper liner. Mixture makes either 12 large cupcakes or 30 mini cupcakes. Bake at 320 degrees F for about 25 minutes for full size cupcakes, and 12 minutes for minis.
Using these substitutes-
12 cupcakes- 155 calories each or 3 points each
30 mini cupcakes- 62 calories each or 1 point each
if you substitute a no calories sweetener (like Splenda)
12 cupcakes- 107 calories each or 2 points
30 mini cupcakes- 43 calories each or 1 point each
if you don't have flax you can use a 3rd egg instead, this changes your calories (using sugar)
12 cupcakes- 160 calories each or 3 points
30 mini cupcakes- 64 calories each or 1 point each
the advantage of flax is- more fiber and Omega-3

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Teriyaki Meatballs- 1pt meatball

photo courtesy of budgetbytes.blogspot.com
This is an adapted recipe from Budget Bytes site. It is a cool cost of making the meal.
I adjusted their recipe to make it healthier by adding fiber. You can adjust it as you fit ways to cut calories (ie-less sugar, ground turkey, chicken, pork, halving with lentils~has the same calories/fat as the beef but more nutrients.)
Here is the recipe as given by Budget Bytes

1 lb.ground pork$3.50
1 largeegg$0.23
1/2 cupplain breadcrumbs$0.17
1 clovegarlic, minced$0.07
2 inchesfresh ginger$0.52
1/2 tspsoy sauce$0.02
2 wholegreen onions$0.25
10-15 cranksfreshly cracked black pepper$0.05
1/2 cupsoy sauce$0.48
1/2 cupbrown sugar$0.12
1/2 cupwater$0.00
1/2 Tbsptoasted sesame oil$0.28
1 Tbsprice vinegar$0.04
2 inchesfresh ginger$0.52
2 Tbspcorn starch$0.12
1 Tbspsesame seeds$0.17
2.5 cupsdry jasmine rice$1.10
3.75 cupswater$0.00
2 wholegreen onions$0.25
I substituted  90% lean beef for pork, and 1 cup Oats for the breadcrumbs (or using 1/2 c oats 1/2 c flax~same cals/fat/fiber). I also added a 1/2 finely chopped celery (I used it instead of green onion).
Calories per meatball-- 67 gram, Fat-- 1 gram, Fiber--3 grams
1 pts (old system) per meatball plus your rice points/calories
Directions (adjusted from Budget Bytes):
STEP 1: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place ingredients for the meatballs in bowl, mix it up.
STEP 2: Cover a baking sheet with foil. Roll the meatball mixture into small balls, about one tablespoon each. You should yield about 30 meatballs. Place the meatballs on the baking sheet as you roll them. Bake until golden brown (about 35-40 minutes).
STEP 3: While the meatballs are in the oven, begin cooking the rice according to the package directions
STEP 4: While the meatballs are in the oven, also prepare the teriyaki glaze. In a medium pot combine the soy sauce, water, brown sugar, rice vinegar, ginger and sesame oil.Heat over a low flame until the brown sugar is dissolved (just a few minutes).
STEP 5: Dissolve the cornstarch in just enough water to make it pourable. Pour it into the pot with the glaze ingredients. Turn the heat up to medium high, stir and cook until thickened. It should thicken as soon as it begins to simmer.
STEP 6: When the meatballs come out of the oven, transfer them from the baking sheet into the pot with the glaze. Stir to coat.
If you eat the recommended serving size by Budget Bytes of 1cup cooked rice with 5 meatballs- it would be 10 pts (5 for 5 meatballs, 5 for 1 cup rice).