New Easy Low Cal Eats, Drinks and Treats
By Trudi Purdy, wlr team
Limiting what you eat isn’t a bundle of fun for most people, so it’s good to know there are easy ways to get a few treats in without blowing the calorie bank . .
From low cal ice cream, to zero calorie zero sugar condiments, and ready meals. Some food makers are responding with great ideas for people who want convenience and treats without excess cals. Here’s our roundup of the yummy-looking latest.
Breyer Ice Cream
This ice cream is a low cal, high protein treat with just 290-350 cals for a whole tub, depending on the flavour. Yep, you read that right!
A normal 100ml serving is just of vanilla is just 58 calories! To give you some idea as to how low cal this is, a 100ml serving of Ben & Jerry's Vanilla would be 230 cals.
Available in 4 flavours, you can buy Breyer Ice Cream at Asda, Sainsburys, Tesco, Ocado and my local Nisa.
|Per 500ml Tub||Per 100ml Serving|
|Cookies & Cream||350||20g||70||3.9g|
Koko Cream Cheese Alternative
This cream cheese is dairy, gluten and soya free but its calcium levels have been matched to semi-skimmed milk.
It’s suitable for vegans, vegetarians and coeliacs and is lower in calories and fat than a full fat dairy cream cheese.
|Per serving (30g)||Cals||Fat|
|Koko Cream Cheese Alternative||59.7||5.6g|
|Average Cream Cheese||131||14.2g|
You can get hold of this cream cheese at Tesco, Sainsburys, Asda, Waitrose and Morrisons. Koko also have other dairy free alternatives including yoghurt, cheese and milk.
Sainsburys Love Your Veg Range
If you’re a vegan, a vegetarian or just looking to get more veg into your diet, this range could be just what you need.
It includes ‘shroomdogs’, ready meals and veggie burgers and they all sound delicious. There are 12 items in the range - some are suitable for vegans; all are suitable for vegetarians.
Looking through the reviews, they all got at least 3 stars and a few got full marks.
Here are some reviews for the two most popular products.
SLYV Vegan Cumberland Shroomdogs
"Absolutely love these sausages. Not a fan of Quorn or ‘fake meat’ generally, but these are just tasty, delicious, excellent. The whole family love them. Well impressed – thank you!" Teri
"PLEASE DO NOT STOP SELLING THESE!" Luize
"Great texture and taste, you wouldn’t know they’re made from mushrooms." Picky Eater
SLYV Mushroom & Spinach Bakes (Not suitable for Vegans)
"Have been a veggie for over 35 years. Recently discovered these and love them. Can taste the ingredients, unlike some other supermarkets’ veggie range." Trish
"This product has made my day. Even meat eaters vie with me for a portion." Jackyj53
"Really delicious combination of flavours and textures. Soft inside, crispy outside. Lovely comfort food." AL65
Products available in the range are:
|Product (Per serving)||Cals||Fat||Carbs||Fibre||Protein||F&V|
|Cheese & Spring Onion Crispbakes||232||10.2g||27g||2.4g||6.9g||0.5|
|Mushroom & Spinach Bake with Rice & Mature Cheddar||219||8.5g||28.9g||2.8g||5.4g||0.4|
|Vegan Cumberland Shroomdogs||170||5.4g||18.9g||5.4g||8.8g||0.4|
|Vegan Caramelised Onion Shroomdogs||166||4.4g||21.9g||2.9g||8.2g||0.4|
|Sweet Potato Katsu Curry & Rice||688||22g||106.7g||8.9g||11.4g||1.3|
|Mushroom Stroganoff & Rice||443||11.9g||68.3g||6.7g||12.2g||0.7|
|Vegan Mix Burger||148||2g||22.8g||6g||6.7g||0.6|
|Vegan Spiced Cauliflower Burger||160||5.6g||17.1g||6.4g||7.1g||0.8|
|Chilli Bean No Carne & Rice||419||5.9g||70.1g||14.6g||14g||1.7|
|Rainbow Veg Stew & Dumplings||354||
|Onion Bhajia & Vegetable Keema Masala||401||19.5g||38.7g||13.9g||10.6g||3.1|
|Macaroni Cheese & Jack Fruit||537||22.3g||58.3g||10.6g||20.6g||0.6|
Skinny Food Co
Condiments can really quickly increase the calorie count and the amount of sugar you are consuming in a meal.
The Skinny Food Co has a range of zero calorie, sugar free sauces and syrups. They also have a range of muffins that are 29 calories each and a low cal, low sugar pancake mix.
We got our hands on two sauces and a syrup to try. Here’s what we thought.
Chip Shop Curry Sauce
Rory tried the curry sauce with some chips. He said,
‘The sauce was very fruity with a mild curry taste but the sauce itself is very watery... It’s not curry sauce as I know it but it’s great if you are watching the calories and I would have it again. It’s definitely different.’
Sweet Chilli Sauce
Lewis and I tried the sweet chilli sauce. I had mine with some chips as a dip and enjoyed the little bit of zing. Although I did find it a little thin.
Lewis wasn’t impressed at all. He had it as a dipping sauce with some homemade dumplings. He said,
‘There was no flavour to it, just vinegar and sweetener. It tasted a bit like cheap ketchup – the type of stuff you get 2 litres of for £1 from a cheap shop.’
He said he would rather have nothing than this sauce.
Salted Caramel Syrup
Becki tried the salted caramel syrup and got quite creative with it. She made some flapjacks with it, added it into some homemade rice pudding and tried making a milkshake with it. She also added it into a hot chocolate and made a pre-football match snack for her son with it.
‘The flapjacks were lovely, I had planned to use JUST the syrup but it was a bit runny so used some Golden Syrup too.'
‘The milkshake curdled unfortunately but the syrup mixed in perfectly with the hot chocolate.'
‘The rice pudding worked well. I stirred it in and it sweetened it up without overpowering it.’
George, Becki’s son, had a bagel with peanut butter, banana and salted caramel syrup drizzled over it before a football match. When asked what he thought of it, he said,
There are 8 sauces on total including garlic mayo, smokey BBQ and South West.
In the syrup range there are 7 flavours to choose from, including white chocolate, maple syrup and peanut butter.
With the muffins, they come in a bundle of 5 including flavours like chocolate sweet potato, blueberry & chia and lemon drizzle.
You can buy their products directly from them on their website or on Amazon.
Aldi’s SlimWell Ready Meal Range
I am a big fan of shopping at Aldi and, although I prefer cooking from scratch, the occasional ready meal can really come to the rescue if you’ve had a busy day.
The range includes sweet potato curry, three bean chilli, cottage pie, Moroccan stew, chicken tikka masala, bolognese ragu and chicken saag.
|Three Bean & Vegetable Chilli||295||2.5g||42.5g||17g|
|Sweet Potato Curry||251||3g||33g||11g|
|Meatballs & Pasta||520||10.4g||65.8g||32.9g|
|Moroccan Vegetable Stew||155||2.5g||23.5g||6g|
|Chicken Tikka Masala||370||5g||14g||65g|
|Chicken Chow Mein||405||4g||45g||43g|
I normally have a couple of ready meals from the SlimWell range in my freezer and have thoroughly enjoyed the ones I have tried so far (apart from Moroccan Stew – it was way too spicy for me!)
The meatballs and pasta have a nice spicy kick to them and are really tasty. The portion size was decent, it was ready in a jiffy and I felt satisfied after eating them for my dinner.
The chicken tikka masala took a bit more prep as it doesn’t come with a side like rice. That said, it does mean you can have it with whatever you like; a jacket potato, your choice of rice, a naan bread etc. It was tasty and, again, a decent portion.
The cottage pie wasn’t as good, although I would have it again because it is soooo low in calories (320 cals). It has carrot mash on the top that is a little tasteless but the meat is tasty. I normally have it with some lovely steamed veg bringing the total calorie count to just under 400 calories.
The only issue with Aldi is that not all of the stores sell all of the range all of the time. So it can be a bit hit and miss but, in my opinion, the range is worth searching out.
These guys make gluten and dairy free puddings that are also suitable for vegans and vegetarians. Their range includes Banoffee Pud, Chocolate Orange Pud, Chocolate Pud and Millionaire’s Pud. These puddings range from 260-290 calories each. However, Pudology have thought long and hard about those of us with a sweet tooth who are trying to watch our weight and have come up with 2 delicious sounding skinny puds.
Their new puddings, Lemon & Yuzu and Chocolate & Raspberry are just 45 and 53 calories respectively. Wahoo!
Here’s the rest of the nutritional info per serving:
|Lemon & Yuzu (per 50g pot)||45||1.6g||7.8g||0.2g|
|Chocolate & Raspberry (per 50g pot)||53||1.8g||8.5g||0.8g|
There are 6 new flavours in the Eat Real snack range:
- Chilli Cheese Hummus Chips
- Sour Cream Hummus Chips
- Mango & Mint Lentil Chips
- Paprika Quinoa Chips
- Sweet Chilli Quinoa Chips
- Pizza Inspired Mediterranean Quinoa Corn Puffs
|Flavour (per pack)||Cals||Fat||Carbs||Protein|
|Mango & Mint||190||8.8g||24.2g||3.1g|
I regularly buy the Veggie Straws and have them as a snack so I was looking forward to trying these new flavours. I wasn’t 100% sure about the Mango & Mint flavour though.
The guys at Eat Real sent us some samples of the new flavours and, because they are vegan-friendly, I asked our resident vegan and foodie, Sam, to give them a try.
Paprika Quinoa Chips
'These don't have enough flavour but are nice.'
Chilli Cheese Hummus Chips
'These are really nice. Lots of flavour and the shape used is better.'
Mediterranean Quinoa Corn Puffs
'Lots of flavour and texture is good. Just not sure if these worked.'
Becki and Jo both tried this flavour too. They said they were very much like 'baby crisps' with not a lot of flavour and a little 'claggy'.
Sour Cream & Chive Hummus Crisps
These were a hit with the whole office. Everyone thought the flavour was good and a nice texture. Sam said,
'Nice herby flavour and the same shape as the chilli cheese ones, so a good texture.'
Mango & Mint Lentil Chips
Strong mango smell. First you get the mango, then the mint flavour. These are a bit different but I would have them again.'
Sweet Chilli Quinoa Chips
'Not very sweet - just a chilli aftertaste. Good texture but the flavour wasn't quite right.'
You can get Eat Real snacks at all good supermarkets as well as a few local corner shops too.
Dragon’s Den thought the products from this company were worth it and invested.
They produce a range of low carb, low fat, low calorie rice, noodles and spaghetti made with Konjac.
If you want to try the product, you can get them from Morrisons, Sainsburys, Tesco, Waitrose, Holland & Barrett or direct from their website.
|Product (per 100g)||Cals||Fat||Carbs||Protein|
Yay! A chocolate with up to 45% less calories! My prayers have been answered.
Red Chocolate is available to buy online or through WHSmith and is available in 4 different varieties. The dark versions are the better ones of the four in regards to calories and sugar but all of the flavours are lower calorie and no added sugar. Here's how they stack up:
|Flavour (per 50g/½ bar)||Cals||Carbs||Fat||Sugar|
|Dark Orange & Almond||152.5||17g||13g||0.9g|
|Milk Hazelnut & Macadamia||191||20.5g||14g||5.1g|
|Milk Melting Nut Filling||207||22.6g||15.4g||5.3g|
You can keep track of how your diet is going and get lots of new food ideas with the Weight Loss Resources online diary. Try it free for 24 hours.