Hungry Girl: Dining Out

Going out to eat is fun, but it can be a dieting challenge too. Here are some useful reviews, tips and facts that can help you survive a meal away from home!

Tried the Applebee's Weight Watchers Menu yet? Hungry Girl Chew and Tell Review:

Soup-er Duper!

Of all the items on Applebee's Weight Watchers Menu, the Onion Soup au Gratin was by far my favorite! This 150-calorie, eight-grams-of-fat, three-point soup is loaded with oodles of delicious, perfectly cooked onions and topped off with yummy bread and lots of melted, reduced-fat cheese. This soup is so good it almost made me cry (and no, it had nothing to do with the onions).

Go Fish!

I tried all of the entrees except for the calorie-infested Baja Chicken Rollup, and my clear favorite was the Grilled Tilapia with Mango Salsa (seven points). I skipped the rice and ordered double veggies. The folks at our local Applebee's were more than happy to fulfill that request. The tilapia was flaky, fresh and not fishy at all. And the mango salsa was filled with spicy tropical goodness. The Teriyaki Shrimp Skewers (five points), Tortilla Chicken Melt (10 points) and Sizzling Chicken Skillet (seven points) also got "two yums up!" Impressive work, Applebee's!

All Dressed Up...

There are two salads on the WW menu at the 'Bees, and both are good. I did, however, have issues with each. The Mesquite Chicken Salad (four points) was tasty, but I wasn't thrilled with the barbeque ranch dressing. It was a bit watery, and it sort of tasted like Band-Aids.

Really. Ask for the dressing on the side and try it out yourself. The Grilled Citrus Chicken Salad (five points) was better. The dressing was light, sweet and fruity (and had no adhesive-strip flavor), while the chicken was char-grilled to perfection. But the salad is topped with oranges, and it's clear that they're from a jar. Why not use fresh oranges? Or even mandarin ones? At least those don't have that weird grapefruit-y flavor that jarred or canned oranges have. That said, I'd order both of these salads again.

Just Desserts...

Here's the deal with the desserts. Both the Berry Lemon Cheesecake (five points) and the Chocolate Raspberry Layer Cake (four points) impressed me. Neither is terribly high in points or calories. The cheesecake, which is actually a scoop of cheesy mousse, has a bit of an overpowering artificial lemon flavor. But it's deliciously disguised by berries and berry-flavored sauce. The Chocolate Raspberry Layer Cake was pretty moist and not bad, though it was a little small (there's no denying that when it comes to cake, size matters). Bottom line: If given the choice, I'd wait till I got home to scarf down a Skinny Cow ice cream sandwich smothered in fat-free whipped cream (around 150 calories, three points if you're counting). But if everyone else is ordering dessert, by all means order one. You won't be disappointed.

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