Simple Nourished Living http://simple-nourished-living.com Sat, 28 Mar 2015 00:22:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Easy Baked Artichoke Feta Dip http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/easy-baked-artichoke-feta-dip/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/easy-baked-artichoke-feta-dip/#respond Fri, 27 Mar 2015 23:44:19 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=33588

This recipe for baked artichoke feta dip comes from Martha Stewart and it couldn’t be easier. If you’re looking for a great-tasting and super-simple appetizer for your next get-together, look no further. We were having some friends over for brunch recently and this yummy dip was the perfect addition. It does need to bake for...

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Easy Artichoke Dip with Feta Cheese

Baked Lemony Artichoke-Feta Dip

This recipe for baked artichoke feta dip comes from Martha Stewart and it couldn’t be easier.

If you’re looking for a great-tasting and super-simple appetizer for your next get-together, look no further. We were having some friends over for brunch recently and this yummy dip was the perfect addition.

It does need to bake for about 40 minutes, but with only 5 minutes of prep time, it sounded too good to be true. I figured I could quickly assemble everything ahead of time and then pull it out (ready-to-serve) once everyone arrived.

This lemony artichoke feta dip tasted best when served right out of the oven, so plan accordingly.


The Skinny on Baked Artichoke Feta Dip

Each (1-ounce) serving of this dip (without crackers, chips or bread) has about 161 calories and 4* Weight Watchers PointsPlus®

I think capers and/or Kalamata olives would make a nice addition to this feta dip.

Easy Baked Artichoke Feta Dip
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 12 ounces feta cheese (one single block)
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 can (13.75 ounces, no-salt added) quartered artichoke hearts, drained and cut in half
  • 5 strips lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350F degrees.
  2. Place feta in center of 9-inch baking dish
  3. Pour olive oil over the feta cheese and with sprinkle artichoke hearts. Add lemon zest, oregano and red pepper flakes.
  4. Cover dish with foil that has been lined with a layer of parchment paper.
  5. Place in oven and bake about 40 minutes, or until thoroughly heated.
  6. Cool slightly before serving with baked crackers, pita chips, or toasted bread.
Cook's Notes
Nutritional Estimates Per Serving (1/12th): 161 calories, 14,5 g fat, 1.3 g fiber, 3.8 g carbs, 4.9 g protein and 4* Weight Watchers PointsPlus

Recipe Source: Martha Stewart

*PointsPlus® for this Easy Baked Artichoke Feta Dip calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

More Easy Delicious Weight Watchers Recipes with Artichokes

Skinny Slow Cooker Artichoke Dip
Skinny Easy Artichoke Soup
Crock Pot Artichoke Chicken
Skinny Artichoke Spinach Baked Pasta
Slow Cooker Potato Artichoke Soup

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Banana Cashew Mini Muffins http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/banana-cashew-mini-muffins/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/banana-cashew-mini-muffins/#comments Wed, 25 Mar 2015 17:56:51 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=33550

I found a recipe for banana cashew bread at Whole Foods Market, but since I’m a mini-muffin-lover, I decided to turn them into two-bite treats rather than bake a whole loaf of quick-bread. These banana cashew mini muffins bake up moist and full of flavor. They’re nicely sweetened with applesauce and honey, while the toasted...

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Mini Banana Cashew Muffins

Banana Cashew Mini Muffins

I found a recipe for banana cashew bread at Whole Foods Market, but since I’m a mini-muffin-lover, I decided to turn them into two-bite treats rather than bake a whole loaf of quick-bread.

These banana cashew mini muffins bake up moist and full of flavor. They’re nicely sweetened with applesauce and honey, while the toasted cashews add a welcome contrast and crunch.

As is the case when using bananas for baking, you’ll want to use overly ripe bananas with lots of brown spots on the skin.

Banana Cashew Mini Muffins on a Plate

The Skinny on Banana Cashew Mini Muffins

I was able to get about 24 mini muffins from this recipe and each single-muffin serving is about 70 calories and 2 Weight Watchers PointsPlus®.

These muffins will keep for about 3 days at room temperature. You can also wrap them individually with plastic wrap and freeze, then just allow to thaw at room temperature or heat up in a microwave or toaster oven.

And, I not-so-accidentally discovered that they taste really good with a little smear of almond butter ;)

Banana Cashew Mini Muffins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 24
Ingredients
  • 1-3/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3 tablespoons flaxseed meal
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon finely ground sea salt
  • 2 large overly ripe bananas
  • ¾ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ⅔ cup unsweetened, unflavored cashew milk
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1-/12 teaspoons vanilla
  • ⅔ cup raw cashews, toasted and chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Line 24-cup mini muffin pan with paper liners.
  2. In a mixing bowl, stir together whole wheat flour, flaxseed meal, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and salt.
  3. In another bowl, mash the bananas with a fork until mostly smooth. Add the applesauce, cashew milk, honey and vanilla and stir until thoroughly combined.
  4. Gradually add the dry flour mixture into the wet banana mixture and stir just until combined.
  5. Stir in the cashews.
  6. Spoon the batter into prepared muffin pan.
  7. Bake about 15-20 minutes, until golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
  8. Allow muffins to coll on a wire rack.
  9. Mini muffins can be served warm or cooled to room temperature.
Cook's Notes
Nutritional Estimates Per Serving (1 mini muffin): 70 calories, 1.5 g fiber, 11 g carbs, 2 g protein and 2* WW Points+

Recipe Source: Whole Foods Market

*PointsPlus® for Banana Cashew Mini Muffins calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

Tools I used for this Recipe

More Favorite Muffin Recipes

Low Fat Lemon Blueberry Oatmeal Muffins
Double Chocolate Bran Muffins
Raspberry Oatmeal Muffins
Mini Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

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3 Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/3-ingredient-weight-watchers-crock-pot-italian-beef/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/3-ingredient-weight-watchers-crock-pot-italian-beef/#respond Tue, 24 Mar 2015 01:17:06 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=33400

This 3 Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef is everything I want in a recipe these days. It’s incredibly easy and amazingly delicious. The meat cooks up tender and flavorful. And the jarred mild pepper rings add just the right amount of zesty tang. Mom, Rod and I all gave it our enthusiastic approval, which...

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This 3 Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef is everything I want in a recipe these days. It’s incredibly easy and amazingly delicious. The meat cooks up tender and flavorful. And the jarred mild pepper rings add just the right amount of zesty tang.

Mom, Rod and I all gave it our enthusiastic approval, which doesn’t happen that often, since our tastes are so different.

Requiring no prep, it’s the perfect busy day recipe. Just plop your roast in the slow cooker. Stir together the dry pack of dressing with water and pour it over. Then cover and cook until tender. Soon your house will smell so good everyone will think that you slaved away in the kitchen for hours.

3 ingredient weight watchers crock pot Italian beef

Skinny on 3 Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef

The original recipe comes from Taste of Home. I cut the recipe in half, which was more than enough for our little family. Once the meat is tender, shred it with a fork and then add it back to the slow cooker, along with 8 ounces of mild pepper rings and continue to cook until heated through.

I served this yummy 3-Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef on hoagie rolls with carrot and celery stick on the side. Mom fancied hers up with melted cheese. This would be delicious stirred into pasta, or on rice, pizza or salad too.

According to my calculations each 3-ounce serving has 158 calories and 3 WWPP, but this will vary depending on the cut of beef you use.

Enjoy!

3 Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef

3 Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Simple and delicious 3-Ingredient Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef turned out tender and flavorful and was a hit with the entire family.
Author:
Recipe type: Slow Cooker
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds boneless sirloin top roast
  • 1 envelope dry Italian salad dressing mix (0.6 ounces)
  • 1 cup water
  • 8 ounces mild pepper rings, undrained
Instructions
  1. Ideal Slow Cooker Size: 4 Quart
  2. Trim any excess fat from the roast and place it in the slow cooker. Stir together the salad dressing mix and water and pour over the roast. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or until the meat is fork tender. Remove the meat. Shred it with 2 forks and place it back in the cooker. Add the pepper rings and their juices. Cover and cook until the peppers are heated through.
Cook's Notes
Nutritional Estimates Per Serving (3 ounces of beef): 158 calories, 7 g fat, 0 g fiber, 1 g carbs, 23 g protein and *4 WWPP

Source: adapted from Taste of Home

*PointsPlus® for Slow Cooker Italian Beef calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

More Weight Watchers Crock Pot Italian Beef Recipes

Slow Cooker Italian Beef (Slender Kitchen)
Slow Cooker Italian Beef Hoagie Sandwiches (Organize Yourself Skinny)
Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches with Caramelized Onions (SkinnyTaste)

More Easy Delicious Slow Cooker Recipes

Weight Watchers Italian Beef and Lentil Slow Cooker Soup
Mom’s 3 Packet Slow Cooker Roast Beef
Weight Watchers Easy Salsa Verde Beef
Easy 3 Ingredient Slow Cooker Chicken
Healthy Slow Cooker Chicken Recipes

This post contains Affiliate Links to products I like. When you buy something through one of my Amazon links, I receive a commission that helps support this site. Thanks for your purchase!

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The Ultimate Guide to Weight Watchers Recipes, Blogs and Resources http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/the-ultimate-guide-to-weight-watchers-recipes-blogs-and-resources/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/the-ultimate-guide-to-weight-watchers-recipes-blogs-and-resources/#comments Fri, 20 Mar 2015 01:19:31 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=33220

Assembling this Ultimate Guide to Weight Watchers Recipes Blogs and Resources has been on my to do list for years. Finally, I sat down and tackled it. I lose way too much time searching out information on the internet. I’m guessing that you do too. I love having collections of resources all in one place. My...

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The Ultimate Weight Watchers Recipe Blog Resource Guide

Assembling this Ultimate Guide to Weight Watchers Recipes Blogs and Resources has been on my to do list for years. Finally, I sat down and tackled it.

I lose way too much time searching out information on the internet. I’m guessing that you do too. I love having collections of resources all in one place. My training as a health information manager taught me that information is useless unless it can be quickly retrieved when you need it. That’s what this handy dandy ultimate Guide to Weight Watchers Recipes Blogs and Other Resources is all about. It’s a one page collection that includes:

  • Weight Watchers recipe blogs that provide reliable nutritional estimates and points plus information
  • Sources for weight loss motivation and inspiration
  • The sites I use for determining nutritional estimates and WWPP
  • Weight Watchers who are blogging about their weight loss journeys
  • Weight Watchers recipe collections and roundups
  • DIY WW Resources

I hope it helps you achieve your healthy weight loss goals!

Best Weight Watchers Recipes Blogs

Weight Watchers Recipe Blogs

You definitely don’t have to be on Weight Watchers to be interested in these blogs. They’re great resources for lighter eating and if you’re interested in knowing the nutritional information on recipes:

1) Simple Nourished Living – I’m a Weight Watchers Lifetime Member who has been sharing Weight Watchers friendly recipes with nutritional estimates and points plus since September 2011. I especially love easy healthy slow cooker recipes.

2) SkinnyTaste – The premier blog for Weight Watchers recipes, I first learned about Gina and SkinnyTaste years ago at a Weight Watchers meeting. She specializes in family friendly recipes that are made lighter and healthier. All recipes include nutritional information as well as the old points and new points plus calculations. Her food photography is stunning too.

3) Slender Kitchen – I’m a big fan of Kristen and her blog, Slender Kitchen, a great resource for realistic WW friendly recipes with nutritional information and points plus, food finds and weight loss success stories. She also offers Weight Watchers friendly healthy meal plans.

4) Emily Bites – Emily and her delightful blog, Emily Bites, specializes in Weight Watchers recipes for lightened up comfort food with nutritional information and points plus details. You’ll find a lot of creative portion controlled dishes made in muffin tins.

5) LaaLoosh – Wendy’s blog, Laaloosh, is another great Weight Watchers recipe blog with easy approachable recipes that include nutritional information, Weight Watchers points, and reviews of food finds.

6) Dashing Dish – Katie is an impressive young woman who combines her deep faith, talent for creating healthy alternatives to the food you crave and stunning food photography on her terrific blog which is another great resource for Weight Watchers.

7) Green Lite Bites –  is where Roni, of Roni’s Weigh, shares her adventures in healthier eating with two kids and a picky husband. She strives to limit sugar and avoid processed flours while including as many fruits and veggies as possible. For those who are members of Weight Watchers, you will love the photographs, nutritional information and WW points that she includes with most recipes.

8) Skinny Kitchen – This is another blog bursting with Weight Watchers recipes, from Nancy Fox, a former California based healthy restaurant chef. In addition to nutritional information and WW points plus, each recipe post often includes a food fact, healthy benefit or shopping tip.

9) Organize Yourself Skinny – Tammy, a busy working mom turned full time blogger, lost weight counting calories. She shares weight loss tips, exercise routines and lots of healthy recipes with nutritional information so you can easily calculate WW points plus.

10) Kitchen Parade – Food columnist and blogger, Alanna Kellogg includes nutritional information and both old and new Points values for most of her recipes on her long-running blog, Kitchen Parade. In addition to recipes, the site provides a wealth of cooking tips, information and inspiration guaranteed to help you become a better cook.

Other Great Weight Watchers Recipe Resources:

Weight Watchers Recipes Blogs and Resources Motivation and Inspiration

Weight Loss Inspiration and Motivation

I don’t know about you but for me reading inspirational weight loss stories helps keep me motivated. I learn so much and get rejuvenated. Whenever I’m feeling stuck, I hit one of my favorite resources for inspirational weight loss stories.

Half Size Me – Despite numerous false starts, binge eating, and too many obstacles (both physical and mental) to list, Heather lost almost 170 pounds over a five year period. Committed to helping others achieve weight loss success, Half Size Me has lots to offer including Podcasts, a Subscription Based Community and Personal Coaching. She even did a podcast with me last winter where I talked about my weight loss journey.

The Weigh We Were – Kat Carney lost 90 pounds 15 years ago. Since then, she has become very passionate about helping women reach their weight loss goals by sharing successful weight loss stories she gathers from around the web. The before and after pictures and healthy tips help women struggling with weight to connect in more personal and meaningful ways with women just like them who have overcome everyday challenges to become weight loss success stories. Seeing is believing.

Weight Watchers has lots of success stories too, both in their magazine and online.

400 Motivational Weight Loss Quotes (Fitness for Weight Loss) – If you love motivational and inspirational quotes you’ll love this comprehensive list. One of my favorites: “Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” ~Robert J Collier

Nutrition and Weight Watchers Points Plus Calculators

Weight Watchers was my starting point with healthy eating and weight loss. And though I don’t actively count points anymore, I still think they can be a great tool for those looking to make changes to their diet and learn how to make better more educated choices.

I provide nutritional estimates for most of my recipes and use this information to calculate Weight Watchers Points Plus. I calculate the nutritional information by using online resources such as CalorieCount.com and NutritionData.com.

It’s not really that hard to do, but as anyone who has done Weight Watchers realizes, it is time consuming. The good news is that you don’t have to do it forever, just long enough to educate yourself in how to feed yourself in a healthy balanced way.

How do I know how many PointsPlus I get each day?

Use this PointsPlus Calculator. Enter your age, weight and height. (Note: There are two different calculators, one for females and one for males. This number will go down as you lose weight, so recalculate often.)

How do I know how many PointsPlus a food is?

Easy. You can calculate your Weight Watchers Points Plus with CalculatorCat.com.

What Should I Eat on the Weight Watchers Points Plus Program?

The nice thing about Weight Watchers is that you get to decide what to eat. It’s basically a food budgeting system and you are in charge of your budget so it’s up to you. Nothing is off limits. If you want a cookie or pizza you can have them, as long as you plan and budget for it.

Obviously, you want to make most of your food healthy so you get the most nutritional bang for your points plus buck as you can. Most days you should strive to meet

WW Good Health Guidelines:

~5 servings of fruits & veggies
~2 servings of milk products
~6 glasses of “liquids”
~2 teaspoons healthy oils (olive, sunflower, safflower, canola, flaxseed)
~1-2 servings of lean protein
~1 multivitamin a day
~Choose whole grains when possible
~At least 30 minutes of activity a day most days of the week
~Limit sugar and alcohol

What’s a serving size?

1. Fruits, vegetables and leafy greens
Serving sizes are 1 cup for leafy greens and 1/2 cup for all other vegetables and fruits. The lettuce alone in a large salad may well count for 2 or more vegetable servings. The default portion for most fruits and vegetables in the Plan Manager is one cup.

2. Packaged whole grains
Use the nutrition label to determine the serving size of packaged whole grain foods.

3. Milk and dairy
If you are more than 50 years old or are a teenager or a nursing mom, increase milk servings to three each day. Examples of one milk serving include 1 cup of milk or yogurt or 1 1/2 ounces of many cheeses.

4. Healthy oils
Having 2 teaspoons of healthy oil each day ensures that you get the vitamin E and essential fatty acids that your body needs. Use the oil on salads, in cooking or as an ingredient in a mixed dish. Two teaspoons of oil is not even 1 tablespoon, so be careful to measure, since each additional teaspoon counts as another PointsPlus value of 1.

5. Lean meat and fish
A serving of lean meat or fish is generally 3 to 4 ounces, about the size of a deck of cards.

6. Water
Six 8-ounce glasses of water is just 3 standard 16-ounce bottles.

How do I keep track of it all?

Journaling is really key to weight loss success. Write down everything you eat and drink. You can go old school and get a small notebook and use it as a food journal. If you have a phone with a camera you can keep a photo journal. Or you can use a free app like MyFitnessPal.com.

Weight Watchers Bloggers

Here’s a list of blogs by Weight Watchers (past or present) who are blogging their way to weight loss success by sharing their stories and experiences on-line. If you are looking for weight loss motivation and inspiration you’ll want to check them out.

A Lifetime Loser
A little (less) Allie
A Pinch of Healthy
Beth’s Journey
Bikini Body Countdown
Brooke: Not On A Diet!
Danica’s Daily
Diva on a Diet
Freakin’ Flabuless
From Fat to Fit Chick
Getting Fit Again in My 40s
It Sux to be Fat
Kris Gets Healthy
Prior Fat Girl: Liz
Quitting Is Never An Option
Roni’s Weigh
Run.Chew.Sparkle
Runs For Cookies
Southern Living Yankee
Snark & Pepper
Sparkly Runner
Suzi Storm
Terra Ayres
The Daily Mel
The Fat Girl Fighting
The Skinny Doll
This is… Nacho Mama’s Blog
Weight Loss Gal
Weight Off My Shoulders
Weight Watcher Girl

Weight Watchers Recipes with Points RoundUps

Weight Watchers Recipe Round-Ups and Collections

There are lots of blogs, while not focused specifically on Weight Watchers Recipes, that have created helpful roundups or collections of Weight Watchers Recipes for their readers. Here are some of my favorites:

100+ Weight Watchers Crock Pot Recipes with Points Plus (Carrie Elle)
100 of the Best Weight Watchers Recipes (Tone and Tighten)
100+ Weight Watchers Friendly Desserts (Something Swanky)
149 Weight Watchers Crock Pot Recipes from 2014 (Simple Nourished Living)
183 Days of Low Calorie Weight Watchers Crock Pot Recipes (Simple Nourished Living)
20 Weight Watcher LUNCH recipes (A Spectacled Owl)
20 Weight Watchers SNACK/APPETIZERS recipes (A Spectacled Owl)
25 Weight Watchers SIDE DISH recipes (A Spectacled Owl)
25 Weight Watchers Recipes with 6 or Less Points (You Brew My Tea)
25 Weight Watcher BREAKFAST recipes (A Spectacled Owl)
25 Easy to Make Weight Watchers Dinner Recipes (Cloudy with a Chance of Wine)
25 Weight Watcher DESSERT recipes (A Spectacled Owl)
25 Delicious Weight Watchers Dessert Recipes (Cloudy with a Chance of Wine)
28 Weight Watchers 2-Point Snacks (Beth Celestin)
30 Weight Watchers DINNER recipes (A Spectacled Owl)
45 Recipes to Start You on Your Weight Watchers Journey (A Spectacled Owl)
50 Weight Watchers Recipes to Help Start your Weight Loss (A Spectacled Owl)
Amazing Weight Watchers Dessert Recipes (Just 2 Sisters)

Weight Watchers Recipes Pinterest

Weight Watchers Pinterest Boards

Weight Watchers Recipes (A great group board from all my favorite Weight Watchers Food Bloggers)

Weight Watchers Pinterest Board (Simple Nourished Living)

DIY Weight Watchers Resources

If your circumstances allow, the best way to successfully do Weight Watchers®, is by joining their program, either by attending meetings, signing up on-line, or with their new personal coaching. I became a lifetime member by attending meetings. If that’s not possible for you, following the program on your own is possible, but it will take creativity and commitment.  Here are links that may help:

How to Do Weight Watchers at Home for Free (Slender Kitchen)
How to Get Weight Watchers for Free, Really! (Frecklberry Finds)
Weight Watchers Free: DIY Guide (Healthy Weight Forum)
Printable Weight Watchers Food Journal (LaaLoosh)
7-Day Weight Watchers Menu Plan (SkinnyMs)
Family Friendly Meal Plan for breakfasts, lunches and dinners with points plus (Weight Watchers)
Create a Custom Weight Watchers Meal Plan with Plan to Eat (Organize Yourself Skinny)
50 Weight Watchers Friendly Fast Food Options with 8 or Less Points (All Mommy Wants)
Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plans with Recipes and Points (Simple Nourished Living)
Weight Watchers Power Foods List (Weight Watchers)
Why I Love Simply Filling & How it Works (Simple Nourished Living)
Zero Points Food List (Weight Watchers)
Plan friendly shopping guide (Weight Watchers)
Weight Watchers 2015: What’s New and What to Eat (Simple Nourished Living)
Weight Watchers Points Plus Restaurant List (Exercise for Weight Loss)

Do you have a great WW Reference/Resource to share that’s not listed here? Please let me know by leaving a comment and I’ll add it!

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Weight Watchers Success Story #1 – Melissa Herb http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/weight-watchers-success-story-1-melissa-herb/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/weight-watchers-success-story-1-melissa-herb/#respond Tue, 17 Mar 2015 00:33:08 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=33332

Hi Everyone, I’ve got something really special for you today. It’s an interview I did with Melissa Herb who has lost 90 pounds on Weight Watchers. Melissa’s awesome before and after photo’s showed up in my Facebook feed. I was so inspired, I shared them on my page. Several people commented asking for her “secrets” so...

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Hi Everyone,

I’ve got something really special for you today. It’s an interview I did with Melissa Herb who has lost 90 pounds on Weight Watchers. Melissa’s awesome before and after photo’s showed up in my Facebook feed. I was so inspired, I shared them on my page. Several people commented asking for her “secrets” so I contacted her and she agreed to share them with us here. How great is that?

Weight Watchers Success Story - Melissa Herb

As it turns out, Melissa and I share a lot more than just Weight Watchers in common. She too has herniate discs and loves yoga and slow cooker recipes :-) I can’t tell you how excited her story makes me. I hope it does you too….

Weight Watchers Success Story #1: Melissa Herb

Tell us a little bit about your weight struggle, Melissa.

Weight has been a struggle for me all of my life. I would lose, gain, and fluctuate. When I was in high school, I had lost over 100 lbs and after my mom passing away and losing course in life, I kept eating. When I decided to lose weight, I would try everything. For instance, cutting back on portions, eating, fruits and veggies, etc. but I would lose 5 lbs and then I would gain plus more. The issue was, I was not happy with myself. Eating way too much junk food, eating fast food, not knowing what to eat, and that was killing me.

I also got injured in 2012 due to an accident and ended up with a bulging disc in my neck, three disc herniation’s in my lower back, and nerve spasms, chronic pain, and physical limitations.

When I talked to my friend who is a Weight Watchers member and lost over 60 pounds with the program, she told me what she was doing, so I decided to sign up for the online program. I started working on baby steps and cutting out bad habits drastically such as soda. I swapped it out with fruit flavored seltzer water or regular seltzer water in a fruit Infuser Water Bottle with fruits in the center.

Weight Watchers Success Story Melissa Herb Before

What was your wake-up call or aha moment that caused you to sign up with Weight Watchers?

When I was talking to my friend about my weight, I broke down and cried because I felt hopeless, negative, and depressed. She told me she did it with Weight Watchers and that prompted me to sign up with the online program because of my busy schedule being a full time student. My chronic pain on my joints and physical limitations due to my injury woke me up also later on when I talked to my friend and just woke up and realized, it is time to do something about this.

Tell us a little bit about how your food/eating habits have changed since Weight Watchers. What did you eat before?  What are you eating now?

Before I started Weight Watchers, I would eat fast food, a lot of processed boxed foods, hamburgers, French fries, 3-4 sodas a day.

After I started Weight Watchers, I took baby steps. I added more fruit, more vegetables, found recipes and created recipes for substitutions for my favorite foods, eating more whole grains, cut down on gluten foods drastically in addition to dairy.

I’ll make kale chips for a snack, more squash, fruits, vegetables, and leaner meats such as fish and chicken. I do not eat fried foods; I just eat baked and grilled. In addition, I purchased a spiralizer for vegetables such as the Veggetti Spiral Vegetable Slicer. I use zucchini, carrots, and many other fruits to make noodles and substitute that for regular flour and rice noodles.

Tell us a little bit about your fitness before Weight Watchers and now?

Before Weight Watchers, I was very lazy. I would sit on the couch, stay in and watch television. I would not go anywhere and avoided hanging out with friends a lot. In high school, I was very active, I played tennis and in addition to the piano. After life situations happening and my injuries, I fell more into a depression and very negative towards life and people. I did not want to be around anyone.

Weight Watchers Success Story Melissa Herb Yoga

I started doing DDPYOGA because it is low impact, mixes rehab exercises with yoga poses, and using dynamic resistance with no weights at all. It has helped me drastically with my flexibility, pain, and losing weight in addition to Weight Watchers. It opened me to other genres of yoga I am currently doing at the moment in addition to DDPYOGA. I also go to the gym to use the pool to swim laps and the machines.

What has been the biggest change/payoff for you so far?

A healthy lifestyle, more time with the ones I love, more energy, and seeing how my body is changing through yoga. My attitude has changed being from negative to positive.

Do you have a favorite recipe you would like to share with my readers? 

I love Hungry Girl’s BLT Wonton Cup Taco recipe, which I use when guests come over. I like taking the extra and putting it on GF bread and having a BLT sandwich with it.

Hungry Girl Wonton Taco Salad Cups

I also love making recipes in crockpots in addition to my rice cooker. I have so many I could share, but this is one of my favorites.

How much weight have you lost? How long did it take you to lose it?

I have lost around 90 lbs and it took me over a year to lose it. I still have 40 more lbs to go until my goal weight but I have been losing more body fat percentage, inches, and staying the same weight. I have not gained or lost pounds but I am not going to let it stop me because it is a lifestyle change, not a diet. It bugs me when people say “diet.” According to the article in Wrestling Inc. Diamond Dallas Page says,” I’ll never use the word diet because you know what the first three letters in the word diet are. They don’t work, lifestyles do” (Middleton, 2013).

Weight Watchers Success Story Melissa Herb After

Where do you live? 

Brandon, Florida

Anything else you would like to say or share? Any tips for others who are struggling with their weight?

This is not a DIET! It is lifestyle change that will be with you for the rest of your life. As Diamond Dallas Page says, “ DIE are the first letters of a diet.”

When you first start out, take your before pictures and as you keep going during this healthy lifestyle change, make collages. I am a collage addict and love posting them on Facebook to share with others and seeing how my body is changing in addition to my outlook on life to remind myself to never go back to the way I was.

I downloaded a free collage app (PhotoGrid) onto my smartphone and bought a tripod to take multiple pictures during this transition. Especially working out, it is great to do a few poses and take before pictures to look at your flexibility changes. It is baby steps and finding what works for you. Before starting any nutrition and workout program, check with you primary doctor. If I can do it with my disc herniation’s and physical limitations, you can also.

There is no excuse not to be healthy and want to be around for your family or love yourself. Most importantly, surround yourself with a good solid positive support system. Surround yourself with people going through the same struggles and you can help each other out.

Products That Melissa Is Using to Assist Her Weight Loss

Do you have a Weight Watchers Success Story or Weight Loss Story to Share? We’d love for you to share it! Leave a comment to let us know :-)

This post contains Affiliate Links to products I like. When you buy something through one of my Amazon links, I receive a commission that helps support this site. Thanks for your purchase!

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Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plan Week #22 http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/weight-watchers-weekly-meal-plan-week-22/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/weight-watchers-weekly-meal-plan-week-22/#respond Sat, 14 Mar 2015 11:35:44 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=33345

Every Saturday I share my Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plans here on Simple Nourished Living. It includes what I’m planning to have for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well a few snack and dessert ideas. To keep things simple I tend to rotate between the same one or two breakfasts and lunches the days I eat...

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Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plans #22

My Weight Watchers Meal Plan for week of March 16, 2015

Every Saturday I share my Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plans here on Simple Nourished Living. It includes what I’m planning to have for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well a few snack and dessert ideas.

To keep things simple I tend to rotate between the same one or two breakfasts and lunches the days I eat at home. And because we are a family of two most recipes I make result in leftovers that we are happy to eat again.  So, I usually only cook from scratch three or four times a week. We like to eat out a couple of times, usually during the weekend.

If I end up with more food than we can eat, I portion it out, package it up and pop it in the freezer for future quick and easy lunches and dinners.

Taking the time to think about what I’m cooking and eating ahead of time makes meal times all week so much easier. With the shopping done and recipes at the ready I can just walk into the kitchen and get cooking. I don’t stick to it one hundred percent, but it helps to have a rough guide.

I hope these posts make it easier for you to stay on track with your weight loss and/or healthy eating goals too.

And remember, there’s a Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plans Section on the blog so you can get inspiration from all of the previous weekly meal plans too. Enjoy!

Since I’m feeling very Irish this week, here’s what’s on my menu 

Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plan (Week #22)

Breakfast

This week I’m going to begin the day with a large mug of decaf coffee (0PP) and either:

1. Cottage Cheese (3PP) with Fruit (0PP) – My cottage cheese and fruit kick continues. I’m loving it for a quick and easy breakfast, just changing up the fruit. My favorite fruit combination at the moment is canned crushed pineapple and sliced red seedless grapes.

2. English Muffin (3PP) with Peanut Butter (3PP) and Fruit (0PP)

Lunch

I like to keep lunch quick and easy. Limiting my choices makes weight loss/maintenance easier. (Here’s research that supports this idea.) I eat lunch out a few days a week. On the days I’m home I plan to have:

1. Leftover Corned Beef & Cabbage Soup (3PP) with Irish Soda Bread Muffins (5PP)

2. Leftovers from Dinner

Dinner

Because we are a family of two most recipes result in leftovers, so, I only cook from scratch three or four times a week. (We eat out once or twice.)

1. Slow Cooker Corned Beef & Cabbage – (9PP) –  For me it wouldn’t be St. Patrick’s Day without corned beef. Making slow cooker corned beef is incredibly easy and amazingly delicious.

2. Mom’s Hamburger Goulash with Macaroni (9PP) – this recipe for hamburger goulash with elbow macaroni is an old stand-by straight from Mom’s recipe box that I’ve loved forever. Serve with a Simple Green Salad (0PP) tossed with Olive Oil (1PP) and Balsamic Vinegar (0PP) alongside.

3. Easy Slow Cooker Frittata (4PP) – made with an assortment of chopped fresh vegetables, this slow cooker frittata makes an easy, healthy and delicious dish suitable for breakfast, lunch or supper. Serve with a Simple Green Salad (0PP) tossed with Olive Oil (1PP) and Balsamic Vinegar (0PP) and Whole Wheat Toast (2PP) alongside.

4. Skinny Lemon Pepper Chicken Breasts (4PP) – Simple + delicious. I like to serve with  brown rice (4) and broccoli (0PP) or spinach (0PP) or sliced atop a big green salad (0PP).

5. Leftover Buffet (AKA: Clean out the Fridge Night)

Snacks

1. Grapes (0PP) Laughing Cow Cheese (1PP) and Triscuits (3PP)

2. Carrots (0PP) and Hummus (1PP)

Dessert

Chocolate Stout Cake with Ganache (6PP) – I’ll enjoy a little and then leave the rest for family and friends.

If you make one of our recipes, we would love for you to a picture and share it on Instagram. Use the hashtag #simplenourishedliving. We want to see what you are making and would love for you to follow us on Instagram.

And remember, there’s a Weight Watchers Weekly Meal Plans Section on the blog so you can get inspiration from all of the previous weekly meal plans too.

Have a wonderful week!

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SkinnyTaste Chicken Pot Pie Soup http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/skinnytaste-chicken-pot-pie-soup/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/skinnytaste-chicken-pot-pie-soup/#comments Fri, 13 Mar 2015 11:19:26 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=32872

Did you like chicken pot pie growing up? I did. And I still do. This great recipe from Gina Homolka, for SkinnyTaste Chicken Pot Pie soup provides all the flavor of chicken pot pie in a soup. Soup + Chicken Pot Pie = Delicious Creamy Satisfying Chicken Pot Pie Soup. Perfect cold weather fare. Serve with...

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Did you like chicken pot pie growing up? I did. And I still do. This great recipe from Gina Homolka, for SkinnyTaste Chicken Pot Pie soup provides all the flavor of chicken pot pie in a soup.

Soup + Chicken Pot Pie = Delicious Creamy Satisfying Chicken Pot Pie Soup. Perfect cold weather fare. Serve with crusty bread. Or fancy it up by topping it with a baked biscuit or crouton of baked puff pastry.

skinny chicken pot pie soup

Skinny Chicken Pot Pie Soup

Skinny on SkinnyTaste Chicken Pot Pie Soup

I modified this to use leftover rotisserie chicken I had on hand. Gina’s calls for 1-1/4 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts. Either will work deliciously. I just waited and added my cooked chicken in with the potatoes. We loved this soup. It’s definitely going on my make again list. Each serving without the biscuit has 269 calories and *7 Weight Watchers Points Plus.

SkinnyTaste Chicken Pot Pie Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
All the flavors of chicken pot pie in a soup, this SkinnyTaste Chicken Pot Pie is creamy, comforting and satisfying without tons of fat and calories.
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup all purpose flour
  • 4 cups fat free milk
  • 1-1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, uncooked
  • 1 package (10 to 12 ounces) mixed vegetables (peas, carrots, green beans, corn)
  • 1 large stalk celery, chopped
  • ½ cup onion, chopped
  • 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons chicken Bouillon (jarred Better than Bouillon)
  • Pinch of dried thyme
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 medium yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, whisk together ½ cup cold water and the flour to make a slurry. Set it aside.
  2. In a large soup pot, combine 1-1/2 cps water and the milk. Slowly bring to a boil over medium low heat. Add the chicken, frozen vegetables, celery, onion, mushrooms, bullion, thyme and black pepper. Bring back to a boil. Reduce the heat and partially cover the pot. Let the mixture simmer 15 minutes. Remove the chicken and set it aside. Add the potatoes and continue to cook until the vegetables are soft, 10 to 20 minutes more (depending on how large your pieces of potato are).
  3. Meanwhile, chop or shred the chicken into small pieces. Add the chicken to the soup and slowly stir in the slurry (water/flour mixture). Cook until the soup thickens, 2 to 3 minutes more. Taste and add more salt and pepper as necessary.
Cook's Notes
Nutritional Estimates Per Serving (1-1/2 cups w/o biscuit): 269 calories, 4 g fat, 32 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 30 g protein, and *7 Weight Watchers Points Plus

Source: adapted from The Skinnytaste Cookbook: Light on Calories, Big on Flavor

*PointsPlus® for calculated by Simple Nourished Living; Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

Tools I Used for this Recipe

Looking for More Skinny Soup Recipes?

Slow Cooker Hamburger Soup
Chicken White Bean Salsa Soup
Olive Garden Chicken Gnocchi Soup Made Lighter

This post contains Affiliate Links to products I like. When you buy something through one of my Amazon links, I receive a commission that helps support this site. Thanks for your purchase!

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Weight Watchers Chicken Picadillo Recipe http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/weight-watchers-chicken-picadillo-recipe/ http://simple-nourished-living.com/2015/03/weight-watchers-chicken-picadillo-recipe/#respond Thu, 12 Mar 2015 22:02:50 +0000 http://simple-nourished-living.com/?p=32051

If you’re not familiar with Picadillo here’s a little history. It’s a traditional meat dish in most Latin American countries as well as Spain, but the ingredients do vary from region to region. Most often it is made with ground beef, chopped tomatoes and various regional ingredients. You’ll usually find it served with rice, tortillas,...

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Weight Watchers Chicken Picadillo

Chicken Picadillo: Weight Watchers-Friendly Recipe

If you’re not familiar with Picadillo here’s a little history. It’s a traditional meat dish in most Latin American countries as well as Spain, but the ingredients do vary from region to region.

Most often it is made with ground beef, chopped tomatoes and various regional ingredients. You’ll usually find it served with rice, tortillas, as a filling for tacos, empanadas and fritters, and in croquettes.

This ground chicken (or turkey) version is an easy to prepare Weight Watchers-friendly recipe that takes only 30 minutes from start to finish.

The Skinny on Chicken Picadillo

Each generous 1-cup serving of Chicken Picadillo has about 278 calories and 7 Weight Watchers Points Plus.

If you prefer, you can substitute skinless ground turkey breast for the chicken.

Weight Watchers Chicken Picadillo Recipe
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound ground skinless chicken breast
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • ¼ cup raisins
  • ¼ cup pimiento-stuffed green olives, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ cup slivered almonds
Instructions
  1. In a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Stir in the onion and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add ground chicken and cook, stirring and breaking up the clumps, until browned, about 8 minutes.
  3. Stir in tomatoes, raisins, olives, cumin, salt and pepper, increase heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat to low and simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
  5. Stir in the almonds just before serving.
Cook's Notes
Nutritional Estimates Per Serving (1/4th): 278 calories, 12 g fat, 17 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 28 g protein and 7* Weight Watchers PointsPlus

Recipe source: Weight Watchers Cook it Fast: 250 Recipes in 15, 20, 30 Minutes

* PointsPlus® for Chicken Picadillo calculated by Simple Nourished Living: Not endorsed by Weight Watchers International, Inc.

Tools I used to make this recipe:

Looking for more quick and easy Weight Watchers Recipes?

Easy Lightened Up Skillet Lasagna
Weight Watchers Beef & Broccoli
English Muffin Hawaiian Pizza

This post contains Affiliate Links to products I like. When you buy something through one of my Amazon links, I receive a commission that helps support this site. Thanks for your purchase!

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