Spices and Sauces

  • What is the 'rule' when it comes to spices and sauces?Im more concerned with dinner meals,for example if im making a pasta - can i have it with a normal pasta sauce which you typically get in the stores?or having lean mince with a sauce?Things like gravy,soups etc? Are spices OK in general too?

  • I can only speak for myself and my personal experience. I use lemon pepper, garlic and seasoning salt for almost everything. I bought these spice at Whole Foods. Watch the salt intake, you could bloat. As for spaghetti sauce, I make my own by stewing down canned San Marzano tomatoes from Whole Foods. Most spaghetti sauces are high in sugar/sodium. If you make spaghetti sauce it is quite good to use chicken bre**ast or ground turkey bre**ast in your sauce. Add fresh veggies and vwala!

    I don't use butter at all. I use a tsp. of lite mayo on my turkey wrap that I make. I use 1.5 tsp. of lite mayo for my tuna sandwich. I don't do gravy. I use about 1 TBSP. of balsamic vinaigrette dressing on a salad. I really try and cut out any extras. I have enjoyed tasting food in its original state. I have slathered so much junk on food for so long that I had forgotten how good it can be.

    Just watch for the sodium counts in spices. I think you'll be fine if you just watch for that.

    Watch the extras! They'll sneak up on you and bite you in the butt!

    Have fun experimenting with food!

    Great recipe...spray evoo on a pan. Sprinkle seasoning salt, garlic and lemon pepper on fresh salmon. Drizzle sugar free maple syrup LIGHTLY on the salmon. (Not maple flavored - real sugar free maple syrup...Whole Foods has it). 420 degrees for 12-14 minutes. Mmmmmmm! You could line the back of the pan with asparagus. Spray with EVOO. Sprinkle with garlic salt. Same temperature and time in oven. Great texture and flavor for asparagus.

    Keep the faith!

    Faithful Renee :0)

  • Spices!  Go for it.  Sauces could be a stumbling block.  Made from scratch you would know what goes in them.  I don't like sauce mixes in those little packets for the reason that Renee mentioned above.  I love different flavors and I'm trying new recipes for clean sauces every week.  So far everything is tomato based and it is starting to bore me.  I may just have to get used to that or get more creative.  Today and Tomorrow are my cooking days for the week so I'll post something if it works out.

  • I started using tomato paste in place of mayo on wraps-------YUMMMMMYYYY

    all the lycopene has to be good for me too


  • Ok, question:

    I use about three teaspoons of Smart Balance organic "butter" every day. It's made of of soybean, olive, and palm fruit oil. Is that allowed?


    "The joy of life is the fruit of discipline" -S. Randall

  • For the sauces, I always look at the sodium content and go from there.  Some, like hot sauces are really high so you want to watch those for sure.

  • thanks guys for the input!! :) think ive got a clear indication now....woohoo

  • What about flax seed oil? I guess it counts as fat.  Does anyone use that? Or do you leave out fats all together, because they work their way in in other stuff???

  • I use dry seasoning blends for all of my meats, because it's typcially healthier than using a sauce. My favorites: Mrs. Dash (southwest chipotle, lemon pepper), Grill Mates (herb & garlic, bbq, montreal steak, montreal chicken), citrus grill seasoning & cajun seasoning for seafood.

    Pasta sauce: I look for the lowest carb and sugar. Try to aim for 12 g carbs or less and 6 g sugar or less. Barilla is usually a safe bet, but don't forget that this should be considered a part of your carbohydrate if you're using it with whole wheat pasta.. Take a look at the marinara labels at the store next time.....shocking how much sugar some have, so stick to the 6 g sugar rule to limit the sugar.  Sticking with ones that are "traditiional" or "tomato and basil"  or "roasted garlic" seem to have less junk in them too, so pick the simpler varieties. I have found that using spagetti squash instead of pasta (lower calorie and lower carbs) with a sauce of  Barilla roasted garlic and ground white turkey *** is the best way to go for me personally. Makes a much larger plate of food for less calories, sugars, and carbs.

    I personally do not focus my first priority in choosing foods based on the sodium content. I'm more focused on ridding my diet of sugar and maintaining that 40/40/20 ratio for most meals, so I avoid ketchup, bbq sauce, and other things with high sugar and carbs.

    I use a ton of different types of flavored mustards for wraps, sandwiches, and other snacks. You really can't go wrong with mustards in my opinion. Being mindful of sodium is good for people who are prone to having high blood pressure that worsens with high sodium intake, but not all people are affected by sodium negatively in this way. You don't want to be piling on huge amounts of seasoning to every dinner, but having a bunch of different ways to season your foods and having a variety of different healthier condiments helps to keep the food interesting.

    In response to flax seed oil.....that is a fat, and yes you can add it to a meal as a fat. Fat does work it's way into some foods, such as salmon, but fats aren't built into many other foods. In meals where you don't have any fats and want to add flax seed oil, that is perfectly acceptable...just watch the portion!  

    "If you want something you've never had, you must do things you've never done!"

  • Emily you are right on about the Grill Mates. They are the best!! Personally I found that the Montreal Chicken seasoning tastes great on pork. I love lean pork chops cooked over the stove top in a light amount of extra virg olive oil and Montreal Chicken seasoning sprinkled on top. I found the smaller containers are a little pricey at the grocery store but you can get huge containers (not ridiculously huge) at Sam’s club or Costco. Much more cost effective.

    I also like crushed red pepper flakes for a little more spice.

    Renee that Salmon recipe sounds awesome! I am gonna make that Sat night now. Rock on!