I've had lots of fluffy followers tell me that they don’t know what to buy at the grocery store or what to cook at home to help them stay on track. I’m often asked for suggestions of good snack foods or staples to keep on hand to help them stay on track.
Believe it or not, I do not live on lettuce and water. I love to eat, enjoy cooking, and live on a very tight budget. So when I shop for groceries, I make sure that I’m intentional with what I place in my basket. I try not to put things in my basket unless:
- I know that it is a needed ingredient for a specific meal or recipe. I try to think of at least two meals that I want to make over the next two weeks. That way, I’m purposeful with my time in the store and with my budget.
- The likelihood of it going bad, spoiling, or being wasted is low.
- I find a new product that looks beneficial to my health and tasty. Some of the best products in my pantry were items I found by accident in the store. (NOTE: I read the labels carefully!)
- Decaffeinated tea bags – I’m not very good at drinking a lot of plain water. I’m a Southern girl in need of some sweet tea on a daily basis. With the WW plan, tea is zero points and counts as part of your daily fluid intake. I use zero calorie sweetener, which has helped me get my sweet fix and give up sodas. The decaffeinated bags let me drink all evening at home without keeping me up all night. Score!
- Crystal Light Hawaiian Punch – Great for a kick to water and a sweet fix on a hot afternoon.
- Frozen chicken breasts – Since I live alone, I usually one need to cook one piece of chicken at a time. Buying frozen chicken, or fresh chicken on sale then freezing it, helps me keep healthy protein on hand without wasting food. Sometimes I buy the pre-cooked frozen chicken strips, too. They’re great to thaw out quickly and top a salad or add to a warp.
- Luncheon Meat – I usually choose a roasted turkey or lower fat ham. Be careful not to get the “honey baked” hams. Lots of extra sugar in those. Lunch meat is a great addition to salads, omelets, or wraps… not just for sandwiches anymore.
- Light Ranch Dressing – Great for salad or dipping veggies, but I also dip my frozen pizzas or Lean Pockets in it to add a little more flavor.
- Salsa – I cannot stress this enough… BUY SALSA. Make sure you buy the kind that looks fresh and chunky, not paste based. Those have a lot of added sugars. If you get the kind that looks to be mostly veggies, it’s zero points on WW. I use it to top salads, add to wraps, dip my sandwiches, you name it. Adds flavor without a lot of sodium, sugar, or fat.
- Sugar-free flavored coffee creamer – My store brand French vanilla is wonderful. It has enough flavor and sweetness that I don’t have to add extra sweetener to my coffee. Plus, I use mostly creamer and a little coffee, and this creamer is still only 1 point.
- ½-1% milk – If you’re a whole milk drink like I was, don’t freak out. Wean yourself down to the lower percentage milk. I still can’t stand to drink skim milk. I’d rather pour water on my cereal than use that stuff!
- Country Crock Light Margarine
- 2% shredded cheese
- Lower Sugar Maple and Brown Sugar Instant Oatmeal – My store brand is awesome and tastes better than the Quaker brand.
- Tostitos Baked Scoops Tortilla Chips – Great way to get a crunchy fix. Plus, a serving is 15 chips. Regular tortilla chips are only 12 for a serving. I’m all about the extra chips!
- Ole Brand High Fiber/Low Carb Wheat Tortillas – My brother turned me onto these. They taste great, are only 1 point each, and FILL YOU UP! Be careful if you buy regular wheat tortillas. My store was out of the Ole brand, so I quickly grab a low-fat wheat version. When I got home and did the WW math, they were 3 points each! Not cool.
- Sara Lee Soft & Smooth® 100% Whole Wheat Bread – Tastes great and is a low point value.
- Garlic – A great way to add flavor to recipes without adding sodium from seasonings.
- Lettuce or Bagged Salad
- Frozen mixed fruit – I’ve found large bags of chopped mixed fruit in my store brand or in the Great Value brand. I get a bigger variety of fruit, and it lasts longer. Great for smoothies, but I typically just top a bowl of it with fat-free cool whip.
- Frozen chopped onions and bell peppers – A quick and easy add to recipes when I’m in a rush and don’t have time for all the chopping. Okay, so the truth is, I’m a lazy cook.
- Frozen carrots and other veggies – Ziplock makes steamer bags, so having a quick side dish of veggies is easy. It’s also nice to add veggies to a pasta dish or other recipes to bulk up the veggie side of life.
- Fat-Free Whipped Topping – Sweet fix that is zero points (unless you eat a lot… which I have… I’m not ashamed to say that… really… you try to eat just a little… you can’t do it… don’t judge me.) It’s really helped my ice cream and dessert cravings. I throw it on top of fruit or add it to a smoothie.
- Birds Eye Viola! Three Cheese Chicken Pasta Skillet – This is a frozen pasta dish that is yummy! It has pasta, chicken, and veggies in it, so it’s really healthy. I add even more frozen veggies to it so that I can eat more without losing points. Just 5 points for a cup cooked. Nice! This also comes in a family size at some stores. Some of the other flavors are more points, so be sure to check before you buy.
- Lean Pockets
- Smart Ones, Lean Cuisine, or Healthy Choice dinners – I make sure to keep some at the office so I technically have no excuse for eating out at lunch! Great when I run low on points for the day and still have a meal to eat.
This fluffy girl stays well fed! I also have plenty of variety in my menu with mix and match ingredients. However, if you find a yummy option that I should add to my grocery list, please share!
Hope this helps!
Faithfully, fluffully His,