Have your meal kit and your weight loss, too!
When it comes to weight loss, cooking at home can be easier on your Budget than ordering takeout. Restaurant meals are notorious for having excessive amounts of fat, salt, and sugar. But what about meal kits? They are promoted as being a healthy option, and many have meals designed for weight loss, plant-based, low carb or keto diets.
There are two different types of meal kit services. There are the ones that deliver prepared meals and all you have to do is warm up the meal in the microwave or oven. And then there are the services that deliver fresh ingredients along with recipes, and you cook the meal yourself.
Here, we take a look at cook-your-own meal kits and give you three tips to make them align to your weight loss goals.
Choose your meal kit provider carefully.
It’s important to remember that meal kit services are designed to compete with restaurant takeout and not necessarily to save you money on buying groceries. This can result in some of their recipes calling for higher amounts of fat, sodium, and sugar in order to create flavour profiles that are similar to restaurant meals.
The good news for those on a weight loss journey is that most meal kit services allow you to view the meals and recipes included from week to week. Take time to review the selections and choose the service with the meals that most closely match your goals. Aim for dishes with lean proteins, larger portions of vegetables, and smaller portions of high SmartPoints foods. .
Alter recipes to fit your needs.
Meal kits that provide the ingredients and recipes make it super easy to remove items that are not worth the SmartPoints to you or halve portions that seem too big for one serving. Small modifications such as reducing the amount of oil used or swapping cooking methods from frying to grilling can easily transform a previously high SmartPoints meal into a delicious, moderately-pointed meal that supports your goals.
Generally, cooking methods such as grilling, baking, roasting, steaming or air frying are going to be easier on your SmartPoints Budget compared to deep frying, which can add saturated fats.
Pack away extra portions before you sit down to eat.
Most meal kits are designed to feed two to four people, with the larger kits often offering greater savings per serving. If you decide to purchase a few extra portions to take advantage of the savings, before you sit down to eat, place the extra servings in a sealable container and pack it away in your fridge or freezer.
The bottom line when it comes to meal kits is that they can be a helpful and convenient alternative, but care does need to be taken to help align them to your plan.