It is not always true that everything made at home is better. Some foods may not become healthier just because you make them at home, so you might as well just purchase them! Plenty of low-point premade foods are still good for you despite being packaged or pre-cooked. This is great news for busy people.
Other foods are not worth the effort of making from scratch because of the labor they require or how expensive the ingredients are. Or, they might require special equipment that you don’t have. Whichever the case, you can save yourself some trouble when you purchase these premade foods. By being selective about the foods you choose to make at home, you can save time, effort, and money while still enjoying nourishing and delicious meals.
1. Puff Pastry or Crescent Roll Dough
These kinds of dough are not as simple to prepare as other dough types. In fact, they can be a hassle. They require considerable time and effort to get the right consistency. Additionally, making them from scratch does not necessarily mean they are healthier, especially when you can buy reduced-fat Crescent rolls from the store that are low in points.
The reduced-fat Crescent rolls from Pillsbury are a fantastic product that tastes incredibly light and flaky! You can use them in sweet or savory recipes, like Crescent Roll Lemon Squares or a Philly Croissant Loaf. There is also a brand known as Pampas, which makes puff pastry dough containing 25% less fat than the average dough.
2. Rotisserie Chicken
We commend you if you have the energy to purchase, prep, and roast an entire chicken. However, it's unnecessary in most cases. In fact, pre-cooked rotisserie chicken is often cheaper to purchase than buying a whole chicken and making it yourself. Not to mention, many rotisserie chickens are low in points. Of course, it depends on how they are seasoned and if you eat the skin.
But you can purchase the meat already pulled and without skin, which, again, saves you effort. Specifically, Costco’s Hand-Pulled Rotisserie Chicken Breast Meat is 0 points! And it has a great flavor and texture. You can find us purchasing items like this and using them for meal prep to save time, points, and money.
3. Marinara sauce
Sure, you could make your own marinara sauce, but why would you when there are so many premade options available? For instance, you can purchase it canned or in a jar. Trader Joe’s Marinara Sauce is only one point per serving, as is Great Value Marinara.
Moreover, there are options for no sugar added and fat-free marinara sauce, which is 0 points! So don't worry about rounding up tomatoes, garlic, and fresh herbs; nobody will give you a hard time for buying jarred sauce!
Creating a good potsticker can take time, especially if you’ve never made it before. Luckily, you don't need to spend your evening making homemade potstickers when you can buy them in the freezer section!
You’ll be happy to know that Trader Joe’s Chicken Potstickers are only 5 points for seven dumplings! Their pork option is the same. Also, Ling Ling Mini Chicken and Vegetable Potstickers are 3 points for six dumplings. Although they’re mini, they satisfy your cravings and can be paired with other foods.
There is no need to make homemade ramen when you can purchase Trader Joe's Spicy Miso Instant Ramen Soup. Although instant foods are typically high in points, this is a special exception. The entire container of ramen is only five points! Plus, it is super convenient since you can just pop it in the microwave and eat it within a matter of minutes.
Another option is purchasing a premade mix to feed the entire family. For instance, Simply Asia Ramen Soy Ginger Chicken Broth is already flavored and only 1 point. You can add any mix-ins you wish, making it easy to control the points amount for the meal. So, don’t worry about crafting the perfect ramen from scratch when you can take advantage of products like this!
Did you know that most salsas are 0 points on Weight Watchers unless they contain certain fruits or other ingredients? While making salsa is ideal for people who have particular preferences, it's important to note that it doesn't necessarily save you points or calories.
Plenty of store-bought options are naturally zero points, such as Pace and Tostitos salsas. Some specialty sauces contain only one point per serving, like Wholly Guacamole Guaca Salsa or Santa Barbara Mango with Peach Salsa. Ultimately, there's nothing wrong with purchasing premade salsa. It's a smart thing to do, and we include premade salsa in many recipes, including yummy Weight Watchers Friendly Mexican Casserole!
7. Riced Veggies
Foods like riced broccoli and cauliflower typically cost 0 points, whether you purchase them or make them at home. So, instead of buying an entire cauliflower and spending time ricing it, you can buy it in the frozen section and heat it in a matter of minutes.
Some store-bought options even contain other mix-ins that upgrade the taste and flavor while keeping the food at a low amount of points. For instance, the Green Giant Riced Veggies Cauliflower and Sweet Potato is one point per serving and much heartier than just cauliflower! You can serve it with your favorite protein to make an entire meal.
Not everyone has the right equipment or enough time to make homemade hummus. Although you might assume that making it from scratch is better for you, that's not always the case. There are plenty of premade options that don't contain tons of preservatives. And many options are amazingly low in points!
An example is the Park Street Deli Hummus, which you can find at Aldi. It ranges from one to two points depending on the flavor. Another fantastic brand is the Athenos Original Hummus, which is just one point per serving, and you can find it at places like Target or Albertsons.