published Thursday, November 18th, 2010

Unexpected ingredients score points in recipes

I knew I was going to enjoy Weight Watchers when we walked into the first meeting and our new instructor had brought us chocolate cake.

Louise Powell, our leader, was a caterer for 10 years. She gets a kick out of downsizing the calories in favorite recipes by changing up ingredients to make them Weight Watchers-approved.

Some of her substitutions sound pretty unorthodox, but I can attest that the results are truly great.

With Thanksgiving looming, Louise's redone recipes, along with some Weight Watchers favorites, will give dieters confidence when sitting down to the table.

In fact, surprise your hosts by offering to bring chocolate cake. But wait until they've eaten to tell them what's in it.


1 box Betty Crocker Super Moist chocolate cake mix

3 eggs

1/2 cup applesauce

11/3 cups water

1 cup sauerkraut, finely chopped

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat Bundt pan with nonstick spray and set aside.

Combine cake mix, eggs, applesauce and water, and beat for about 2 minutes. Add sauerkraut, and beat until well-blended. Pour into Bundt pan and bake 40-45 minutes.

Cool at least 15 minutes before removing from pan. Does not need icing.

Servings: 12.

Weight Watchers points per serving: 4.


6 tablespoons self-rising flour

11/2 teaspoons nonfat plain yogurt

3 tablespoons skim milk

Mix all ingredients and divide in half. Drop on cookie sheet coated with nonstick spray. Bake 10-13 minutes at 425 F.

Servings: 2.

Weight Watchers points per serving: 1.


2 cups canned pure pumpkin

1 18.3-ounce box Betty Crocker Fudge Brown Mix

1 tablespoon Better 'n' Peanut Butter (room temperature)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Coat an 8- by 8-inch pan with nonstick spray.

Combine pumpkin and brownie mix, and stir until smooth. Pour into sprayed pan. Spoon Better 'n' Peanut Butter on top and swirl around.

Bake 35 minutes. Batter will remain thick, and it should look undercooked. Remove from oven, cool to room temperature, cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate at least two hours.

Yields: 36 squares.

Weight Watchers points per serving: 1.


1 can diet cola

1 cup ketchup

1 green pepper, sliced

1 onion, sliced

4 boneless chicken breast halves

Mix cola and ketchup in a large pan. Add onions and peppers. Bring to a boil, then add chicken breasts.

Simmer covered for about an hour. Remove chicken and cook the sauce with the lid off until it thickens. Serve over rice.

Servings: 4.

Weight Watchers points per chicken breast: 4 (rice adds more points).

about Susan Pierce...

Susan Palmer Pierce is a reporter and columnist in the Life department. She began her journalism career as a summer employee 1972 for the News Free Press, typing bridal announcements and photo captions. She became a full-time employee in 1980, working her way up to feature writer, then special sections editor, then Lifestyle editor in 1995 until the merge of the NFP and Times in 1999. She was honored with the 2007 Chattanooga Woman of ...

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cildawg1 said...

Okay, I've GOT to try some of these. My curiosity is peaked!!!

November 18, 2010 at 8:54 a.m.
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