Eating out can be stressful when you are trying to stick to a diet. But with Trim Healthy Mama it is about a lifestyle and food freedom. So you can eat out & hit your goals!
This THM on plan restaurant guide by cuisine will help you find something to love at any restaurant that you go to!
When I first started THM I remember being afraid to eat out. Because I might mess up the fuels and it is hard not being in charge of the cooking.
Don’t get me wrong, I love not being in charge of the cooking. Any THM mama could use a night off from cooking and dishes but not knowing exactly what is going into your food can be tough.
But it is totally doable to eat out and stick to the Trim Healthy Mama plan. All it takes is familiarizing yourself with the plan and then having a good idea of what you can eat and what you should avoid.
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THM On Plan Restaurant Guide by Cuisine
You can go out to eat and stay on plan! Enjoy your meal and meet your goals using this THM On Plan restaurant guide by cuisine.
Tips For Eating Out on THM
These are some general guidelines for eating out on Trim Healthy Mama.
- Avoid Fried Foods
- Avoid Sugary Sauces (BBQ, Honey glazed, Sweet N Spicy etc)
- Enjoy Creamy Sauces with an S meal (Bernaise, Hollandaise, garlic herb butter)
- Steamed or Sauteed vegetables are on plan.
- Grilled meats or fish are on plan.
- It is pretty difficult to find any restaurants that will have an on plan dessert. You could get a bowl of berries for something sweet. Sometimes they might have a sugar free sorbet (which is likely off plan sweeteners but at least it isn’t sugar). Usually I just eat something sweet at home or keep a Lily’s chocolate bar in my purse for the car ride home.
Now that you understand the basics of eating out on THM, here are some tips by cuisine to make it easier to enjoy your night out.
A lot of restaurants will allow you to sub out your pasta for a veggie that is on plan. Try chicken alfredo over broccoli or chicken parm with green beans.
A side salad is a great side for your meal.
What to Skip? Pasta and the bread basket.
My husband believes pizza should be in a category of it’s own and not combined with Italian! Probably not necessary to say that we eat pizza a lot. These tortilla pizzas are a fave at home but if we go out to a pizza restaurant, there are a couple of options.
Many pizza restaurants will make you a pizza in a bowl. You might have to ask for it but many are making them a permanent menu choice. It is just pizza sauce, cheese and all the toppings that you want in an aluminum pie pan.
A nice salad with Italian meats is also a great option.
What to Skip? The pizza crust!
Start with shrimp cocktail or just a simple salad with bacon and ranch.
For dinner enjoy a yummy steak with mushrooms. As a side, have asparagus or creamed spinach.
What to Skip? The baked potato (potatoes are no longer a bad thing on THM and most varieties are ok to eat in an E. However, the potatoes at the steak restaurant are likely Russet and those are not on plan. If you have a question about on plan potato options, check out the THM Analyzer App.
At the hibachi restaurants, you can ask them to prepare your chicken or steak without the sauce to avoid unwanted sugars.
Some Trim Healthy Mamas have had success asking to sub brown rice for the white rice in a fried rice sub. If they can do this for you, your meal with be a XO.
What to Skip? White rice and sauces that are loaded with sugar.
At a burger joint, you can request a lettuce wrap at most spots (even fast food). Pile it high with lettuce, tomato, a few onion slices, bacon, mushrooms, pickles, mustard and mayo.
Another option is to get a burger (no bun) & a side salad. Take your burger and the fixings, cut it up and top your salad with it. It is surprisingly delish.
What to Skip? Ketchup & of course the bun for the burger. If the restaurant has sweet potato fries, you could likely have an on plan XO. They might fry the potatoes in an off plan oil but I tend to not worry about that (especially if it is a special dinner out vs. something at home).
Start with a sausage, cheese and pickle plate.
Have the ribs with dry rub and possibly slaw (might have some sugar added). If they have deviled eggs, you can enjoy those as well.
Pulled pork salad is another option that would be on plan.
What to Skip? BBQ sauce – it will be loaded with sugar.
Take your own Baked Tostitos (E) or Lavash chips to eat with the salsa.
Order fajitas and take your own low carb tortillas (or just eat the meat & veggies with a fork). Feel free to eat sour cream, cheese and guac. (THM S)
A taco salad without the shell is another tasty option. You could also order most of the chicken/steak based entrees but might have to make a modification for the sides.
What to Skip? Chips, tortilla or taco shells.
Sandwich Shops / Deli
Your best bet is a salad. Get all the veggies that you want. Add cheese, eggs and bacon for an S. Or keep it light with veggies, lean deli meat and a low fat dressing for a FP.
The sisters gave their approval for a personal choice E meal at Subway (but I would say this principle would apply to any sub shop). Here is what you do: order a small sub on wheat. You can ask them to hollow out the roll (remove some of the inner bread leaving just a “shell”) or you can just do it yourself after if that makes you feel weird.
Get the sandwich with lean deli meat, veggies and mustard (no mayo since you are trying to keep this in E territory).
What to Skip? White Bread and chips.
Get the plain/naked wings to avoid breading. You can choose dry rub, wing sauce or even a garlic parm sauce will work in an S. Dip those and the celery in ranch and have a salad to round things out if you want.
What to Skip? Breaded wings and any sweet wing sauce (BBQ/Asian Sweet Chili Sauce etc)
Grilled fish with grilled veggies is a great meal to have at a seafood restaurant. They will likely saute this in butter and/or oil so it will be an S.
What to Skip? Breaded or fried fish.
Cracker Barrel for a Trim Healthy Mama
For the entree you have lots of choices! Grilled chicken tenderloins, hamburger steak, lemon pepper trout or grilled catfish are great protein options.
For sides you can get the green beans, broccoli, turnip greens or a salad. They also have baked sweet potato, corn or pinto beans for an E side.
Just be cautious that a lot of their veggies/meats are cooked in oil or butter so you may have end up with an on plan XO if you eat the potato or other E vegetable. I totally swear by eating a XO every once in a while because sometimes it actually helps me LOSE not gain so don’t be afraid of a XO every once in a while.
You can also always choose to have breakfast! Eggs and bacon or an omelette.
What is your favorite thing to eat when on the go? Looking for more fast food options, check out this THM guide to fast food.