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Dessert-Ordering Tips & HG's Easiest Recipes Ever!
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Dessert-Ordering Tips & HG's Easiest Recipes Ever!

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08.17.11
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Hi, HG!

I go out to dinner a lot, and I think I've got the guilt-free ordering thing down (thanks to you!). My problem is dessert. I need something sweet, and most restaurants don't offer a lightened-up dessert menu. Any ideas?

Dessert Dreamer

Hi Dessert Dreamer,

I totally get that need for dessert. Sometimes a meal just doesn't feel complete without it. But as you probably know, most restaurant desserts will cost you hundreds of calories -- even if you share one with a friend. I've got some ideas that should satisfy your sweet tooth without causing you to pop a pants button. Check 'em out...

No fresh fruit on the menu? Just ask... Many restaurants have it on hand and will gladly serve you a bowl of berries or other cut fruit. If that doesn't feel decadent enough, ask for a side of whipped cream or a sprinkling of powdered sugar.

A single scoop is safe. If it's offered, fruity sorbet is your best bet -- that tends to be the lowest in calories and is often fat-free. But one scoop of any type of ice cream is almost always a decent option as far as restaurant desserts go.

Mini desserts are in.
I'm SO glad the mini dessert craze is becoming more popular. It's a great way to keep from overindulging. Seek out restaurants that have them, like P.F. Chang's and Applebee's. At some places, these petite treats are still high-ish in fat and calories. But they're always a better choice than the full-sized versions!

Pack a craving-buster to hold you over.
Dessert-inspired sugar-free gum like Extra Dessert Delights is a GREAT way to curb your craving. The new Apple Pie flavor is amazing -- very Willy Wonka! If you're still in need of something sweet when you get home, you can grab something guilt-free, like a chocolate-flavored VitaTop. Mmmmm...

Now you're ready to tackle dessert and keep it guilt-free! 

Hey Hungry Girl,

Love your ideas, but I'm not much of a cook. Can you recommend some of your easiest recipes to get me started?

Carly Can't Cook

Hi Carly,

You bet! My recipes are very easy to follow, but I understand that it can be intimidating to get started. Here are some of my best SUPER-SIMPLE recipes...

Egg Mugs - These microwave scrambles practically cook themselves. Start with the original: The Egg Mug Classic. All you need is some nonstick spray and two ingredients. There's really no prep work involved... unless you count spraying your mug as prep work. It's almost too easy.

Foil Packs - Wrap everything up in foil, place it in the oven, and set a timer. THAT'S IT. Your protein and veggies will cook up together in one happy foil packet. And the cleanup is super-easy. Check out the latest HG foil-pack recipes to get started.

Trios - If it's a long list of ingredients that tends to overwhelm you, you'll want to get to know HG's three-ingredient recipes, a.k.a. TRIOS. These are some of my easiest recipes. Click here for my latest Trios. And check out Hungry Girl 300 Under 300 for SEVEN chapters of Trios, including "Chicken Trios," "Tortilla Trios," and "Tuna Trios."

No-Cook Recipes - No risk of burnt food. No need to watch a timer. Just assemble and enjoy! Click here for a recent email of no-cook recipes. For an entire chapter of "Cook-Me-Not" recipes, grab a copy of Hungry Girl 1-2-3: The Easiest, Most Delicious, Guilt-Free Recipes on the Planet. Plus, like the title implies, all of the recipes in that cookbook are super-simple.

Hope I've inspired you to give some HG recipes a try. Let me know how it goes! I promise -- it's a cinch!!!

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