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Is there a whole-foods based meal planning program?

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
Is there a "Saving Dinner" type of meal planning program that is nutrutious and whole-foods based? (disclaimer: I haven't actually used "Saving Dinner" so maybe it IS very nutritious??) I am totally inept at meal planning and was using something called Menus 4 Moms which was free and gave you the recipes, laid out shopping list, etc. for free. I liked it but a lot of the ingredients were overprocessed stuff. So is there a program that offers weekly/monthly menus, recipes, prepared shopping lists, etc. that is really nutritious? Thanks so much for your help!
post #2 of 30
I used saving dinner for a while and didn't really like it. The recipes were not the types of things I enjoy eating. Have you checked out their sample menu? I was using the dieting one and it didn't have a lot of boxed/packaged foods on it. None of the recipes I got involved canned soups or boxed mac and cheese or those flavoring packets for tacos. Keep in mind that with saving dinner they send you a recipe for a main dish and then it's up to you what to serve with it - they usually suggested brown rice and a steamed veggie of some kind. The one I've been considered for back to school (I'm a student and work full time, the menus and shopping lists being mailed really helps quite a bit) is thescramble.com you might check them out, the seem pretty decent. Three of the meals a week don't use meat.
post #3 of 30
I have used the Saving Dinner the Low Carb way and I've liked it. But like all of those plans, I never want to eat everything in that week's menu so it just ends up being another recipe book for me. I've been thinking of making my own list of recipes, about 30 of them, and making my own list. Would this work for you?
post #4 of 30
that scramble one looks pretty good... has anyone actually used it?
post #5 of 30
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for sharing your experiences. I'm going to check out the scramble and the different saving dinner choices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KatSG
I've been thinking of making my own list of recipes, about 30 of them, and making my own list. Would this work for you?
That would be awesome! I need all the help I can get!
post #6 of 30
I use a program called Modern Menus (www.modernmenus.com). Their whole thing is healthy eating and not using canned products. What I like about it is that many of the meals you can make under 30 minutes. Haven't heard of the scramble one though. Will have to check that out as well!
post #7 of 30
There's a mama here that runs a free newsletter:
http://www.healthy-quick-meals.com/

I've loved some of her recipes. If there are any that use canned or preprepared foods, I'm sure they're easy to adapt b/c I do it! Some of her recipes have become family favorites for us.
post #8 of 30
Ive used menu mailer: low carb, regular, frugal, & vegetarian. Often times we only like 3 or 4 of the 6 recipes. They don't use much canned/boxed stuff but some of the recipes do and I think more so under the frugal mailer.

Ive used the scramble and did not like it at all. The menus dont really offer much of a suggestion for what to serve as a side (where as menu mailer does give serving & nutritional suggestions for the grain/veggie with each meal) and it seemed like they used a lot of ingredients...more ingredients= more $$ Some of the recipes were ok, but mostly they were just eh.

Pros to these is that the menu and shopping list is mailed to you every week so it makes shopping MUCH easier.

Cons neither of these menu mailers seem to think much about what KIDS would eat and their tastes. The meals have a more grownup taste to them, which is fine but if my kids wont eat it then I have wasted food and money.
post #9 of 30
I am seriously thinking about making a (free!) vegan menu mailer type of thing. It's frustrating to try one of these menu plans and find only a few vegetarian options, but when those options rely heavily on meat substitutes or dairy, they become just as much work in modifying as it was to start from nothing.
post #10 of 30
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post #11 of 30
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post #12 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by yitlan
There's a mama here that runs a free newsletter:
http://www.healthy-quick-meals.com/

I've loved some of her recipes. If there are any that use canned or preprepared foods, I'm sure they're easy to adapt b/c I do it! Some of her recipes have become family favorites for us.
Ooo! I popped over to this site and it looks *great*! I'm finding lots of recipes I want to try.

Thanks!
post #13 of 30
i am actually thinking of starting a site to give vegetarian/vegan weekly meal plans and shopping lists. i already do it for a couple of friends of mine at another board.
post #14 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by sprouts
i am actually thinking of starting a site to give vegetarian/vegan weekly meal plans and shopping lists. i already do it for a couple of friends of mine at another board.
I get her meal plans and they are FABULOUS! Always fresh, whole ingredients, nothing complicated and I have most of the staples on hand - the only shopping I have to do is for fresh produce. I can't recommend them enough!
post #15 of 30
I checked "The Reality Diet" out of the library a few weeks ago. It has meal plans for eight weeks, and the diet has a very strong emphasis on fruits and vegetables. There are a few processed foods included, but I've found that for the most part it is pretty simple to eliminate them or substitute them for something else.

There aren't any shopping lists in the book, but they do have them on the website, which is nice. There's a list for each week.

The meals are REALLY tasty. Favorites include the Thai Chicken Satay with Crunchy Vegetable Salad, the Strawberry Shortcake Napolean, Cornmeal Crusted Sole, and the Gingered Pear Crumble. So far we have only had one meal in two weeks that we didn't like.

The only problem I'm having so far is finding enough room in the fridge for all the fruits and vegetables we are eating. I've never eaten so much produce in one week before!

The diet is designed for weight loss, but if you tweaked the portion sizes here and there it would also work just fine for weight maintenance.
post #16 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by amcal
I get her meal plans and they are FABULOUS! Always fresh, whole ingredients, nothing complicated and I have most of the staples on hand - the only shopping I have to do is for fresh produce. I can't recommend them enough!
as usual, you made my day! *kiss*
post #17 of 30

Menu plans

Quote:
Originally Posted by amcal
I get her meal plans and they are FABULOUS! Always fresh, whole ingredients, nothing complicated and I have most of the staples on hand - the only shopping I have to do is for fresh produce. I can't recommend them enough!
How does one go about getting her meal plans?
post #18 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by NutriMom
How does one go about getting her meal plans?
: *crosses her fingers that sprouts is taking more subscribers*
post #19 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nibor
: *crosses her fingers that sprouts is taking more subscribers*
I would lurve that :
post #20 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by yitlan
There's a mama here that runs a free newsletter:
http://www.healthy-quick-meals.com/

I've loved some of her recipes. If there are any that use canned or preprepared foods, I'm sure they're easy to adapt b/c I do it! Some of her recipes have become family favorites for us.
This site looks fabulous and I signed up however I think my spamguard is eating the messages. Anyone want to tell me what email she uses to send the message so I can try and fix the problem. Thanks!
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