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Old 09-03-2012, 12:01 PM   #1  
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Default Cookbooks for people who love to cook, but must lose weight

Hi to everyone. I joined just yesterday and wrote a little something under the introduction sections. I'm not at present going to follow a diet plan (as in, counting points, etc.). I just want to count calories and keep the fat under control; eat more vegetables; cut sweets down drasticaly; keep a food journal; be mindful of what I eat.

I've included non-meat options for years (mainly soy) in my diet and love them, but am not interested in becoming a vegetarian or vegan. I want to still eat meat. Also not interested in glutan-free eating. So I'm hoping to find some good cookbook recommendations here. And would love to hear from others who love -- or just like a lot -- to cook and how they do that while trying to lose weight. Thanks, everyone!
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Old 09-03-2012, 06:35 PM   #2  
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I do have to eat gluten-free and low-grain so some of my reccomendations would ordinarily include some gluten-free and grain free cookbooks (like the Primal Blueprint Cookbook and Paleo Comfort Foods).

I'm also not vegetarian, but some of my favorite cookbooks happen to be vegetarian cookbooks, though I often {gasp of horror at the sacrelige) add meat (for example throwing in a smoked pork hock with the skin removed to a pot of vegetarian or even vegan lentil soup).

I'm also partial to slow-cooker recipes (because I'm a lazy cook)
The Everyday Low-Carb Slow Cooker Cookbook: Over 120 Delicious Low-Carb Recipes That Cook Themselves by Kitty Broihier and Kimberly Mayone

I collect cookbooks, but still can't really help you well, because there are just too many variables in what makes a good cookbook. It depends on whether you like ethnic recipes and/or spicy food (LOVE THEM), and how open you are to looking for less available ingredients.

The best advice I would give is to browse the cookbook section of your library. Don't rule out cuisines you don't need (for example some vegetarian and gluten-free cookbooks have recipes so amazing that you don't have to be gluten-free or vegetarian to enjoy them). Also the library is usually free, so you can try before you buy. And many libraries will have the currently most popular cookbooks.

I love the Weight Watchers cookbooks, because they focus on commonly available foods. I especially love the WW books published prior to 1997 especially in the 80's and 90's (because they include nutritional values for the foods as well as exchange plan information, and I love exchange plans).

I have so many favorites, it's hard to pick one, but right now I'm loving the paleo cookbooks (especially those that have lots of low-carb veggie recipes.

Although I recently borrowed the Todd Wilbur Top Secret Recipe books (every one my library had, all his books except the beverage one).

Most of these aren't diet-friendly, but I found many that could be easily adapted, and two of his books are diet-oriented: Low-Fat Top Secret Recipes, and Top Secret Recipes Lite!

I love the "for dummies" and "Everyday" series of cook books.

And I love encyclopedial style cookbooks like, Vegetables, Revised: The Most Authoritative Guide to Buying, Preparing, and Cooking, with More than 300 Recipes
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Old 09-03-2012, 07:29 PM   #3  
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I like the Biggest loser series of cookbooks- some yummy stuff in there. I recommend checking them out from the library!

Also there are tons of great low-calorie recipes online.
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Old 09-03-2012, 08:26 PM   #4  
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I would suggest your local library. Even if you don't check any out, it gives you the chance to browse LOTS of different options (more than bookstores might have). If you do decide to check a couple out, it will give you the chance to try them and go thoroughly through them without buying them first.
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Old 09-04-2012, 08:24 PM   #5  
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I was excited to see some replies to my cookbook question. Thanks, everyone. I hope other people chime in with cookbooks they like. I know we can go online and search for them; I drool over them at the library and bookstore, too. But there is nothing like recommendations from people in the same boat you're in. That's why I wanted to hear what others here might like, especially people who do like to cook. As much as I do tend to read the comments by readers, I don't entirely trust them. I do trust the people here, though.

I went today to a Barnes and Noble and drooled over the latest cookbooks. But I ended up buying 2 magazines: Cooking Light and Clean Eating. Both of them seem to have a lot of things not related to cooking. On amazon I saw many readers of Cooking Light say that the magazine had "fattened up" in past years, with recipes with higher calorie counts and more emphasis on comfort foods (fatty ones) and lifestyle articles that they had in the past.

I almost bought a "Heart-Healthy" recipe magazine by Sanje Gupta. The problem is, the calorie and total fat count of many recipes was rather high. So I didn't buy it.

Tonight's dinner was pretty typical for me: I worked late and when I got home I was too pooped to care about cooking. So I did what I usually do: I sauteed a protein with vegetables in 1 tsp. of olive oil, and used some hummous as a "sauce." All of it was carefully measured out, so I didn't overdo it. And it tasted okay. I'm not sure I would serve this to anyone, though. I don't really think of this as "cooking." The protein I used was a Quorn frozen "naked chik'n cutlet." The texture of it, once it's softened up in the skilled with a little olive oil, is a lot of chicken--dryer, but I don't mind it.

What I need to do is cook up a storm on the weekends and have things ready to heat up when I get home. I have a tiny apartment, tiny kitchen, and tiny refrigerator and freezer unit, so I am a little limited to cooking in bulk.

Well, I appreciate the recommendations you all have given and will check them out.

I hope to hear more from cookbook lovers and people who love-like to cook.

Have a great evening.
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Old 09-04-2012, 09:12 PM   #6  
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this one is pretty good. got it from th elibary and had to buy it!

Everyday Food: Light: The Quickest and Easiest Recipes, All Under 500 Calories
martha stewart

full of yummy things!
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Old 09-05-2012, 12:52 PM   #7  
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I also bought Everyday Food: Light. I haven't had a chance to really study it, but I have the Everyday Food: Great Food Fast that I like a lot. I have found that there are lots of recipes in the Great Food Fast that I can modify to meet my needs. I am a Martha fan. Especially since she went to jail. LOL.

For me, the jury is still out on "Cooking Light". I quit my subscription a while back because it seemed to me that they had become something other than a cooking magazine. There were way too many articles on exercise and travel that I could never afford and not enough recipes. I recently bought the latest issue and it was mostly recipes, so I don't know...

I like and subscribe to "Eating Well" and the "Everyday Food" magazine by Martha Stewart

Martha Stewart has a very nice website as does Eating Well. These two, and I imagine others like them, are very balky and difficult to use with a slow internet connection, so take that into account.

I recently bought a specialty cooking fresh magazine from "Fine Cooking", which is expensive and very nice. I read in the magazine that they have an area on their website that is aimed towards lighter recipes. I haven't had a chance to check it out, but I am optimistic about the recipes.

To me, the recipes in these magazines and cook books are more geared towards maintenance with a little luxury, than loosing. I think for loosing simple is best, and that I don't really need recipes. Also, I enjoy modifying regular recipes that I like. Obviously, some are better than others for modification. I know there are all kinds of recipes for stuff like "light" cheese cake, but, for me these fall into the "do not try at home" category.

I also like Ina Garten. She has lots of recipes that you can reduce the oil by about 10 times, and the salt by 50 times and you get something really good.

I love cookbooks. I go on Amazon to see what's new, and then I order it from the library. The only problem with cook books as bed time reading is that they make me hungry!

Kaplods: I forgot to mention that I got my laugh for the day with the pork hock in the vegetarian bean recipe.

Last edited by gailr42; 09-05-2012 at 12:58 PM. Reason: add a sentence
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Old 03-04-2013, 10:21 PM   #8  
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Here in N.Z we have a magazine called Healthy food guide, it's just brilliant, I do love looking at cookbooks but I end up usually googling recipes! Like today I found Ina Garten's lemon chicken online and had it with mushroom flavoured rice, it was yummy.
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Old 04-12-2013, 12:55 PM   #9  
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I like online blogs/recipes:

If you google healthy eating blogs, you will find a lot of ideas and recipes to try.
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Old 04-12-2013, 01:42 PM   #10  
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Originally Posted by Candeka View Post
I would suggest your local library. Even if you don't check any out, it gives you the chance to browse LOTS of different options (more than bookstores might have). If you do decide to check a couple out, it will give you the chance to try them and go thoroughly through them without buying them first.
This! You can always scan or write down your favorite recipes. Admittedly, a few cookbooks I got, I have only used maybe a handful or two's worth of recipes from them and they are like 500+ so hence me seconding Candeka's suggestion.
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Old 04-12-2013, 01:52 PM   #11  
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I recently bought one called Clean Eating For Busy Families that has some pretty good recipes.

I don't have this one yet, but I really want it! It's by the lady that does the "Cook Yourself Thin" series.
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:42 PM   #12  
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Originally Posted by SalRogers View Post
And would love to hear from others who love -- or just like a lot -- to cook and how they do that while trying to lose weight. Thanks, everyone!
I think my love of cooking has helped with my weight loss. Because I enjoy cooking, I don't have to rely on processed crap like frozen dinners or meal replacement bars or whatever. I've had so much fun trying new foods and new recipes and I'm really learning to eat healthy in a way that I can maintain for life. My only criteria for a "healthy recipe" is that it contain ingredients that are real actual food. Any recipe that includes a list of 6 cans o' stuff is one that I will promptly ignore.

I can't help with cookbook suggestions, though. I do all my recipe collecting online. I haven't looked at a cookbook in years.

Last edited by Novus; 04-12-2013 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:35 PM   #13  
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Weight Watchers Take Tonight is a good one. It's got homemade versions of restaurant food, with fewer calories and fat. There are Greek, Chinese, Italian, and Mexican recipes.
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Old 08-03-2013, 04:24 PM   #14  
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I like the Taste of Home Magazine's Comfort Food Diet cookbooks -- there are at least 2, and they look similar, but have different recipes. I got one at Walmart and one on EBAY. It comes with a card to redeem for a free year of the magazine, too.
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