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Dear Hungry Girl,

I have been using canned tomato sauce a lot lately to save calories, but it's kind of thin and boring. Any ideas on how to spruce it up and make it more like marinara?

Seeking Saucy Ideas
Dear Seeking,

Jarred spaghetti sauces are often deceptively high in fat and/or calories, so using canned tomato sauce is a GREAT idea. And making your own sauce out of some key ingredients is an even BETTER idea. To make your own marinara at home, just take a can of regular old tomato sauce (some cans already have Italian seasonings mixed in!), and then mix with lots of canned diced or crushed tomatoes (they come in a bunch of different varieties, too -- the Hunt's Fire Roasted ones are fantastic!). To make lower sodium sauces, use no-salt-added or reduced-sodium canned items. Flavor up your sauce with fresh garlic, garlic powder, onion powder, minced onion, pepper, basil, etc. It is SUPER-EASY to make delicious, low-cal, low-fat tomato sauces at home -- and "thin" and "boring" is not an option... trust me!

Dear HG,

I have been buying Alternative Bagels for a long time but noticed that they have been pulled from shelves recently. I've heard rumors swirling around about why they're gone. Can you please help shed some light on the subject for me?

Dear Bagel-Baffled,

We called Western Bagel, makers of the famous and delicious Alternative Bagel, to get the scoop (or should I say "HOLE" truth -- har har!). Here's the story. Most of the Alternative Bagels were being touted as "Sugar Free". After trace amounts of sugar were found in some of these bagels, Western Bagel decided to play it safe and yank the flavors in question from shelves. They resolved to no longer call these bagels sugar-free and are in the process of updating the information on the labels and website, so as to not mislead customers. In the meantime, you should still be able to find their Roasted Onion and Country White bagels on shelves. We're fans of all these bagels here at HG. For those of you who are out of the bagel loop, the Alternative Bagels are very low-calorie, high-fiber bagels that can be found online and in select supermarkets. I think the company acted very responsibly by deciding to remove the questionable claim from product labels. Expect to see the Cinnamon Spice, Sweet Wheat, and Very Blueberry bagels -- with new labels -- on shelves soon.

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*The PointsPlus® and SmartPoints® values for these products and/or recipes were calculated by Hungry Girl and are not an endorsement or approval of the product, recipe, or its manufacturer or developer by Weight Watchers International, Inc., the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark and SmartPoints® trademark.

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