Weight Watchers and Planning Meals

Updated on February 02, 2013
A.F. asks from Bellmore, NY
6 answers

If any of you have been successful following the Weight Watchers plan, how have you planned your meals? I think I need to plan what I am eating for dinner first so I know how many points to spread throughout the day. Have you looked at a recipe and gone line by line figuring out points or do you try to pick dinners from a Weight Watchers cookbook? I thought the latter was a good idea; the points are already figured out for you.
Also how do you make 26 points work for you? I am a big breakfast eater but with the other two meals and desire for snacks, I need to figure out less points for breakfast. I think dinners should have the most points.Finally, has anyone tried just eating the Simply Filling technique and not count points? Thanks for the ideas!

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answers from Minneapolis on

I am doing WW now. Have been for 16 weeks and have lost 21 pounds. Would like to lose another 20 I think.

I am a PLANNER. I have a specific meal and grocery planning sheet I use that I found online and use it religiously. My schedule is very busy (I do home daycare so many hours working and planning and cleaning, plus I am in Bachelor program with fast paced 7 week classes year round with no breaks between and a busy family life). We keep a running grocery list on the refrig, scribble stye, then I transfer it, in dinner planning format to my master sheet, with the additional items in their space on the sheets lower half.

We do easy meals all week that are generally meat and veggies we can cook easily. Turkey burgers, no buns with veggies we saute or microwave, with seasonings added to them. Some great chicken sausages with several flavors from Sams club (3 points each), with a veggie (I love the spinach and asiago ones!) . Stuff like that, or crockpot things with shredded chicken, but no cream soups or those types of things. Weekends we do more labor intensive meals.

I have a website suggestion for you I use a LOT for home made meals with points already calculated and TONS of variety. It is my go to place for great recipes. www.skinnytaste.com

The cajun chicken pasta light is fantastic. We doctor it up with more peppers and mushrooms. Veg it up, we call it. Do that to every single meal and snack as they are free points. Many great recipes we use often on that site. I always make sure I am getting at least 5 servings of fruits and veggies (if not more), I eat very little bread, rice or pasta (I believe I have a little issue with gluten anyways so try to avoid them, but I LOVE them and crave them). I should drink milk, but do not like the taste.

I try to not use points for snacks. I eat fruit, or warm up leftover veggies from a dinner. Occasionally I use a few a day for light veggie dip that comes in proportioned packs with a bunch of raw veggies.

For breakfast I almost always do 4-5 points in eggs/egg whites (from a carton) and a splash of skim milk for scrambled eggs, with a TON of sauteed green peppers and mushrooms and whatever other veggies I might have. SUPER filling and low points.!

Planning at least part of my day is the only way I can be successful. Without it, I stand in front of the cabinets or refrig and just grab things.

Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Fargo on

I use ww online. I also have 2 ww cookbooks. We try something new every week, most we wouldn't make again (i write that in the book or changes I'd make for next time). I've found some family keepers. I try to make dinners that are 6-8 pts. I package it up for lunches as well. I make a few 6 pts chili's and bean soups that i freeze in containers. If i plan on a higher pt dinner, i have those in my freezer for lunch. I have a few progresso soups for emergencies (i don't like processed foods but i do add extra veggies to the soup).

I have a smoothie for breakfast 5 pts(almond milk, frozen strawberries, protein powder).
Lunch 6-8 pts (leftover dinner or frozen meal, i try to keep at 6 pts)
Snack 3 pts (a lot of raw veggies and Sabra spicy hummus-a little goes a long way, Sabra is the only brand I like)
At this point, i have used 14-16 pts. You would have 12-10 left depending on your lunch.
Dinner is veggies (a few we like them baked or broiled with a little spray and sea salt, some sort of chicken, fish or a 6-8 pt dinner)
Dessert 3 pts.....depending on how many points i have left and if i need something. Chocolate cake.....coffee mug, 1 egg white, 1/4 cup powdered sugar, micro for 1 minute.

I don't use exercise points or the extra weekly. I plan my meals in advance when i go shopping with points. I also plan eating out, where to go, i research their menu and points values before hand. If i need extra points, i can do egg whites and 1 piece of the Sara Lee bread and go with out the hummus and eat veggies plain. Gives me more points for dinner if we go out.

I cook chicken breasts in crockpot, shred and individually portion in baggies. I can make a quick low point chicken salad or soup (broth veggies and chicken). I have ground turkey browned and frozen for quick chili or other meals. I also use a lot beans in meals.

PM me if you want the recipes or have other questions.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Green Bay on

Just focusing on your 2nd question - how to make the number of points work for you. The idea behind Weight Watchers is to get people to make healthier choices. If you like bigger breakfasts, then stick with bigger breakfasts and fill your other meals and snacks with zero/low point foods - i.e. fruits/veggies, etc.

The idea is to make choices about what you are eating - at one meeting, they said - this fast food cheeseburger and this meal on this plate equal the same number of points - which is going to be most filling/satisfying? There might be days when you just need that cheeseburger! But then there are days when you need to satisfy your hunger with more - the full plate of food. It teaches you how to fill your plate appropriately/wisely. Make sense?

I have figured out recipes line by line. It is time consuming, but their tools online are helpful in doing so. I usually used a mix of both through the week. I figured out point values for my favorite foods - my usual yogurt, how many points my bread was, cereal, etc. Then dinners I used some of the WW cook book stuff and I also took some time to figure out the point values of my favorite personal recipes. The WW tools also has a feature that offers ideas to make your recipes "better" - more filling/less points.

Go to meetings and see what others do. :-) Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Austin on

I have not tried weight watchers, but I DO want to tell you what is working for me...

No, I'm not paid by Reader's Digest for saying this...

about 3 weeks ago, I got the February Reader's Digest issue.. and saw their short blurb about losing weight. I don't usually get "sucked into" a fad diet, or anything, but knew I needed to lose weight.... (The doctor has been bugging me for a while, and I had my annual exam coming up 12 days later, so I went for it.)

I followed their 4 day quick start diet, and lost probably 6 lbs right off the bat. I then continued with their 21 day plan, and have just about finished that.... and I've lost 12 lbs so far!

Sunday, January 13, I weighed myself (first thing in the morning) at 194 lbs... this morning, I weighed just under 182 lbs! It really hasn't been that hard, either!

The first 4 days are 2 delicious shakes a day, and 2 cups of one of their soups (also delicious). You are also allowed a snack that consists of fresh veggies and fat-free cheese.

After that, it is suggested recipes from their book. Day 5-14 is 1 shake, lunch, dinner, and 2 snacks.

I bought the first book off of Amazon for about $16... (RD has it for about $34, including shipping). I just bought the second cookbook, also.

The diet emphasizes lean meats (chicken breast, pork loin, things like that), and lots of fresh veggies. It also utilizes whole grains, to give you complex carbs. It also discourages using artificial sweeteners, or artificial stuff.... just good, healthy, wholesome food.

There is a wonderful turkey/spinach wrap that is very filling that I've eaten several times for lunch.

Hubby and I have REALLY been enjoying the recipes... they are VERY flavorful. He is eating the meals, also, but continuing to eat other stuff. I'm not making him follow the diet, but he is supporting me by eating the meals I fix.

I won't try to say I haven't been hungry, or miss some of my old "comfort" foods... if I get hungry, I go for low-fat cheese or fresh veggies.... but I am still losing weight!

I want to get down to at least 170 lbs, if not less.... after I finish the "21 day diet", I'll repeat the diet starting at day 5...

btw.. the shake is 3/4 C fat-free yogurt, 8 frozen strawberries, 1/4 C coconut milk, 1 TBSP peanut butter, 1 TBSP flaxseed meal, 3 TBSP non-fat milk powder, 2 tsp honey, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 4 ice cubes, and 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder. Whir it all up in a blender. There are alternate items in that recipe, but that is the recipe I followed... it is yummy! (Being so rich and satisfying, it makes me feel that I am "cheating" ..... )

Day 5-15, the shake is similar, but only 1 tsp peanut butter, and instead of 1/4 C coconut milk, it is 2 TBSP coconut milk and 2 TBSP water.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Eau Claire on

I also did WW and loved (still love) it. Since I'm not much of a cook, I usually chose foods I already knew how to make and figured out the points for them, line by line. I would take a marker and write on boxes & cans the number of points for each (you really do get good at predicting after a while). So if my favorite dish turned out to be 10 points...I would eat half of it for 5 points, and then eat a bunch of zero or lower point fruits/veggies with it.

I didn't really plan anything. For breakfast I usually only eat cereal (multigrain cheerios to be exact)...it's quick, easy, and only 4 points with skim milk. Then for lunch I usually just eat a SmartOne or LeanCuisine (both have the points on the box)...and I haven't really gotten sick of them yet...they range from 5-10 points a meal. Usually I will have a fruit or veggie for mid-morning and mid-afternoon snack. LOTS of water in between! Then by the end of the day, depending how many points I had left would determine what I would have for dinner.

I agree, dinner is my biggest meal, so I liked to end the day with a 10 point meal or so...and usually I would have 4 points left for a WW treat after the kids went to bed! (Or a beer LOL)

I would save all my 'reserve' points for the weekend, which is when I tended to go over. Usually Saturday I would let myself indulge more (this would be a great day for your big breakfasts!) and then sunday buckled down again. Even with dipping into my reserve points saturday I always lost weight each week.

After the first day or two...I can honestly say I never felt like I was denying myself or felt hungry...it's just a different way to look at eating. If you want to eat unhealthy this time...you have to cut back next time...and it's all about learning portion control (1 cup is not the same as a heaping spoonfull) lol.

I can say it was REALLY easy if you give it a chance to work! Keep a written record of your weight! I lost 1-2 lbs each week (sometimes a meesly .4lbs)...seems to go so slow in the beggining, but after two months I had lost 18 pounds!

Back to your question lol, I do have two of their cookbooks...and tried a few recipes, but just didn't care for some of them as they usually had ingredients I didn't care for. Or they were expensive to make and no one would eat them but me! Find a good way to work it into your lifestyle for you and your family that you know you will be able to stick with!

Good Luck!



answers from Atlanta on

Why only 26 points? I thought 29 points was the minimum. Or did that change recently?

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