Healthy Living Saturdays: Variations

Prior to my interest in slow food and clean food, we had a real problem with eating out. There was one month that we spent over 350 dollars—on top of groceries—on going out to eat. Yeah, I know that’s a lot.

Of course we still go out to eat now, but we have a budget and we try to use it for going to restaurants instead of fast food. Meal planning has helped curb the eating out, but when we have friends over on weekends, it’s really difficult to not go to Burger King with them. So I’ve been doing “variations” of out favorite fast foods on weekends.

For instance, tonight I did pizza pasta. Yes, it has many of the bad things that pizza from Papa John’s does, but you’d be amazed at how much better the same foods are for you when you prepare them yourself. Restaurants just cook differently than you do at home (maybe that’s part of the reason it tastes so goooood). They cook their veggies in fat and add preservatives and I have yet to find a fast food chain that serves organic anything. So my pizza pasta uses organic beef, mushrooms, sauce, herbs, and pasta. I also chose to not put as much meat in it as the recipe called for. My breadsticks were made from (mostly) wheat. You would be surprised at how much healthier this meal is for you than a pizza from one of those chains. And it’s delicious too!!!

What variations do you make at home to simulate your favorite fast food? How do you make it healthier?

Also does anyone know of a recipe for whole wheat breadsticks?