Apr 21 2011

Cheap Frozen Dinners at Acme (Albertsons) 4/22-28

Posted by Seth in Diet, Good Deals

Ok ..  pretty good price here.  Some of this stuff isn’t half bad if you load it up with hot sauce like me.

Acme/Albertsons has Weight Watcher’s Smart Ones Classic Favorites and desserts on sale for $1.79 or $1.29. Buy 10 and you get $5 off instantly. Below is a coupon for another $4 off 10. Makes them cheap.

Coupon – $4 off 10 Weight Watchers smartones

Apr 21 2011

Processing, Take 2: Hummus

Posted by Seth in Diet, Food

Thanks to Wegmans and some well placed coupons, I now have a huge stash of Chickpeas aka Garbanzo beans.  So, I decided that I’ll be making my own Hummus and giving it some of my own twists.  You all know by now that I’m on a diet, Hummus isn’t particularly my first choice of snacks, but do what you gotta do.  Put it on top of a cocopop and it’s not too bad, and it’s low calorie and filling.


Toasted sesame seeds for tahini

Let’s talk Tahini.  It’s required for Hummus.  It’s just sesame seed paste.  If you can’t find or make it, from what I have read, just omit it from the recipe.  Unless you can get bulk quantities of sesame seed, I suggest you just buy Tahini, since the per pound price of it will be less than the actual sesame seeds. Lucky for my I scored a 5.5lb jug of them at the restaurant supply in the neighborhood of 12 bucks.  Expect to pay $5-8/pound at a grocery store.


  • 5 cups Sesame Seeds
  • 1 1/2 cups Olive Oil (Extra Virgin, of course)

Yield: 4 cups Tahini


  • Preheat your oven to 350F.  Put the seeds on a baking sheet, and toast them for 5-10 minutes.  You do not want them to brown or burn, that’s bad.  The picture above was after about 6 minutes.  Let them cool for 20 minutes.
  • Put the seeds in the food processor and add the oil. Blend for 2 minutes. Stop and scrape the sides as necessary. You want a thick but pourable texture, add more oil and adjust blending time if you have to.

everything into the processor, and you have.. Tahini

Protip: DO NOT spill the seeds all over the oven or kitchen floor.. it is not awesome. trust me.

Storage: In my favorite container, the Ball Mason Jar. This will fill up 2 pint jars perfectly.  In to the fridge, will keep for months.


Use this to make your basic plain old hummus.  We’ll get on to customization later, the first part is the original stuff.

  • 2 15oz cans Chickpeas (Garbanzo beans),drained, but save the liquid
  • 6-8 tablespoons lemon juice (to taste)
  • 3 tablespoons Tahini
  • 4 gloves garlic
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt & Pepper (fresh cracked, of course)

Preparation: Everything goes into the food processor and you’ll be blending 3-5 minutes (stopping and scraping when you have to).  Add back some liquid from the beans if you need to, you want a nice, spreadable paste. That’s it ! Easy, eh?

The recipe above makes a container-sized batch pictured here:

Hummus w/ Sundried Tomatoes

Hookin’ it up

This is really easy.  When the hummus is done, it’s time to hook it up. How about adding some of my favorite buffalo wing suace? We now have QSL Buffalo Garlic Hummus.

How about some of those sundried tomatoes I have hanging around?  Toss some of them in and pulse until they are chopped into pieces, or keep on going for a smoother texture. Also use the Sundried Tomato Olive Oil as a substitute for the regular stuff.

I also have plenty of canned jalapeno’s around, toss some of them in and squeeze some lime juice in.  Now you have Jalapeno Lime Hummus.

Add roasted red peppers.. voila.

The combos are endless…  do what you think will taste good!

Mar 25 2011

Eating good does not have to suck

Posted by Seth in Diet, Food, Good Deals

I’m on a diet.  Diets suck, especially for fat dudes like myself that like to cook, and eat.  I’m counting calories, so the frozen dinners at the grocery store are quick and easy for me and usually come in around 2 bucks. It’s not gourmet, but some of the stuff is bearable with a little Tabasco (which I happen to have a bunch of).

Diet’s don’t have to suck entirely, though.

  • Your tastebuds don’t have to suffer
  • Your wallet doesn’t have to suffer
  • Your diet doesn’t have to suffer

If you are a foodie and on a diet, it’s win win, you just need to make a major adjustment to portion size like I have.

Make your own frozen dinners

Anyways, on to the topic. The above pic shows the fruits of about 90 minutes of work, all with stuff in my fridge or in my cabinets.  If you want to rob a chinese restaurant for containers, go ahead, but I hit the restaurant supply for a case of microwaveable containers at around 19 cents a pop.  I’m not going to give specific recipes in the post, my point is more to motivate you to think and plan, and say to hell with the frozen dinners at the grocery store – make your own – your wallet and your mouth will thank you.

By the way, all come in at less than $1 per meal, and less than 300 calories. 19 meals. word.

Whole grain pasta, veggies, homemade sauce

I cooked up 2 pounds of Pasta that made 15 portions.  While I had the oven going for the chicken thighs below, I threw in some sliced up squashes, garlic, and a little olive oil into a foil pouch and put into the oven for 30 minutes. Topped with homemade San Marzano tomato sauce.

Whole grain pasta, homemade sauce, sauteed spinach

With the rest of the pasta, I also hit it with the San Marzano sauce.  For veggies, I found some chopped spinach in the freezer, sauteed that quick with some garlic and voila. Don’t mind the presentation, this crap is goin in the freezer and I’ll stir it when I reheat it anyway.

Chicken thighs, over basmati rice

I had some Mahogany Chicken in the fridge, cooked that up, served over Basmati rice, and put a little bit of no-fat honey mustard dressing on top.

I have to get rid of some tortillas and onions I had laying around, so I sauteed up the onions and some of my canned jalapeno slices in some Fajita seasoning. I’ll be using them as filling for quesadillas.

Ok, now get off your butt, and go cook.