Cooking is a lot of work! If you're one of those folks who don't like to cook, or don't have enough time to every night, these Weight Watchers hacks are right up your alley.
7 Weight Watchers Hacks for Convenience Foods
I love to cook, but it gets tiring to do it day in and day out. This post is for those who don't cook much or don't want to cook as much.
If you're someone who doesn't cook, consider learning. Teaching yourself to cook – even for just a few meals a week – is going to tremendously benefit you. You can use YouTube to learn for FREE!
Cooking your food means you have control over what you put in your body. Look below for some meal prep hacks if you're concerned about time and effort. I've got you covered!
Zero Point Food Add-Ins
I talk about zero point food add-ins a lot, in almost every recipe post! You can easily buy cooked, shredded chicken breast at Sprouts or most any grocery store in the deli section, and use zero point foods to make it stretch. This doesn't mean you are supposed to stay under your points. In fact, I encourage eating Weeklies! What this means is that you get more food without using too many points!
Here are a few ideas for adding in zero point foods and stretching your points:
- add in frozen veggies (broccoli, carrots, etc)
- use veggies as the main course rather than meat
- use 99% fat-free ground turkey or chicken when possible
Adding in zero point foods can easily double the amount of food you have, without adding points. We tripled the amount of food per serving without adding points with this Chicken Mac n Cheese Casserole.
WW hack: I also cook with non-stick cooking spray instead of butter,
which saves tons of points!
We cook our WW freezer meals at the beginning of the week and they're super simple, but if you don't like to cook at all, you've gotta watch this video from my WW friend, Barrett. She went to Whole Foods and literally scanned everything LOL. Barrett shares tons of convenience/freezer meals that are low in points.
See: More WW hacks from weightwatchers.com
Keep Low Point Foods on Hand
Keeping low point convenience foods on hand will help keep your points in check, while saving time so you don't have to spend hours cooking.
Some low point foods I keep on hand:
- zero calorie syrups (for adding sweetness/flavor to coffee and desserts)
- low point protein bars
- low point breads
- WW snacks
- zero point BBQ sauce
- zero point ketchup
- low point cereals
- zero point foods (this list has carb count attached)
- Instant Pot hard boiled eggs
- low point dressings
- low point Dollar Tree foods
As you can see, I'm a carbaholic! That's why it's important to make sure everything is pre-measured and tracked. I track my carbs. I don't do keto and WW but I do keep carb count in mind and stay under 100 grams each day.
If you don't like to cook, you may be opposed to meal prepping. For us, meal prepping just means making sure dinner time is easier. We freeze cut up fruits for smoothies, and cook 3-5 pounds of chicken in the Instant Pot every Sunday. We use chicken for most of our lunches, because we don't like cooking midday.
Pssst… check out my Ultimate Instant Pot WW Guide!
For you, meal prep may mean cooking chicken once a week and doing zero point add-ins. Whatever it looks like, just make it happen!
Pre-measuring everything is going to save you a ton of time, and it will help with portion control! For example, you can measure out dressing, condiments, chicken, vegetables, and more and keep them in the fridge until you're ready.
Use Seasonings Generously
Even if you're microwaving your food or eating pre-made meals, you can mix them up a bit by seasoning them well. This is especially useful if you eat the same thing several nights a week. Season your chicken as tacos one night, and as something else the next night. Keep it fresh!
Using herbs and other seasonings tricks our brains into thinking our foods are way higher in points than they really are. You can make an entire meal that's zero points, but with the right seasonings, it's going to seem like it's much more! This leaves us feeling more satisfied. Our brains are so weird this way, but it works.
Here are a few ways you can use different seasonings and condiments to mix chicken up:
- BBQ Chicken Strips
- Instant Pot Saucy Chicken and Rice
- Chicken Piccata
- Instant Pot Chicken Parmesan
- Zero Point Spicy Chicken
- Instant Pot Chicken & Broccoli Soup
Yes, these require some cooking – but most of my recipes are made in the Instant Pot and are SUPER simple. My 13 year old cooks dinner several nights a week, so everything I post is easy enough for beginners to cook. These meals are all great for meal prep, too. Cook on Sunday and reheat the rest of the week!
Keep an Open Mind
Sometimes when you try new things, they aren't going to work out (like the time I used cauliflower gnocchi to make cinnamon rolls). Keeping an open mind about cooking and meal planning can help you stay on track with your Weight Watchers journey.
Keeping an open mind includes the plan changes WW has made. 2020 is all about choices, and being able to CHOOSE the plan you like. Don't let this overwhelm you: stick to Freestyle if it's working for you. The choices are for those who Freestyle isn't working for.
Bonus: Use Your Resources
Free Weight Watchers Meal Plans:
- 23 Point Meal Plan – Week 1
- 23 Point Meal Plan – Week 2
- WW Freezer Meals
- WW Zero Point Recipes
- How to do a Zero Point Day
Download my free printables to help keep you on track:
Bonus #2: Save Money
If you're struggling to pay the fee for Weight Watchers each month, try one of these free or cheap Weight Watchers alternatives and let me know how you like them.
What's your best WW hack? Leave a comment and let me know!