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First I love to cook. I cook almost everything I eat & I’m single. I have total control over the ingredients, how it’s cooked, the nutritional content & I freeze the leftovers for the days I don’t feel like cooking, am home late, etc. Often call the freezer my local takeaway - can have a nutritious meal ready to eat in 5 minutes.

Secondly, yes you can dine out but it isn’t all that easy at first after surgery when you are restricted on what you’re allowed to eat, what you are able to tolerate, portion size restrictions, nutritional needs, etc.

I do dine out regularly. Not much in my first year though. I don’t go to chain type ‘restaurants’ (they’re not as prevalent in Australia thank goodness), never fast food & rarely takeaway (maybe once or twice a year). I go to real restaurants where all the food is cooked fresh from scratch - not mass produced food, full of preservatives & other additives, that’s shipped in bulk & just cooked at many chain ‘restaurant’.

But this has been my choice. A few have posted about using home delivery meals. May be that is a better option???

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Yes I eat out with friends and family about once a month. I have had some bad meals that I thought were good choices. I find it to be like expensive russian roulette. I have been so ill with the simplest looking choices. I am unable to eat sweet or greasy foods. I have found a Thai restaurant that suits me well, so its a nice treat now and again

My favourite no cook summer food at the moment is - a slice of very crisply toasted seeded bread with smashed avocado and 100 gms of cooked prawns. This gives me 25 + grams of Protein as well as only 350 cals win win

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Well, right after surgery, you probably won't feel like going anywhere. I am single, and my best friends were instant mashed potatoes and (not at the same time) Tomato Soup. After the liquid stage, I went out and ate scrambled eggs if it was breakfast/brunch time, then Soup later. Panera has a good soup, and Longhorn has wonderful french onion soup. You can find stuff.

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I am not sure how easy it will be in the early stages. Takeout from a restaurant certainly, but dining out would be more difficult just because of how long it takes to eat and needing to measure things plus your actual restrictions of what you can eat. Plus if you do find something that doesn’t agree with you it’s better to be at home. Once you get used to what your portions should and are able to tolorate most things though you should be able to eat out without too much issue. I’m not sure you would want to eat out most meals though just because there are so few truly healthy options. Many people who don’t love to cook will cook a few meals one day a week or so and freeze portions though. Perhaps that’s something to consider. That would definitely be a healthier alternative to how most restaurants typically prepare their food. Or like arabesque suggested a home delivery service cuts out most of the prep work. Maybe that’s something you want to consider some days.

Edited by ShoppGirl

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I'm not single, but my husband & I now eat different foods, so for me, its like cooking for one. I keep some "convenience" go-to foods at home: canned chicken, refried Beans, canned tuna, tuna pouches, canned green beans. I also take advantage of some of the things my husband cooks and eat my tiny serving of it like his marinara meat sauce for Pasta (made from a jar, not homemade), and taco meat when he makes tacos. Then I take my size portion and mix in things like ricotta cheese, or top off with finely shredded cheese. I do the same with the convenience foods. So technically, I'm not cooking with those convenience foods....canned chicken and refried beans are definitely my two main go-to foods though. I'm in stage 3, which is soft foods, if you are still in the liquid stages I'd go for Protein Shakes, Fairlife milk, chicken broth, etc.....can't really get stuff like that at a restaurant.

I have been to ONE restaurant so far, last week, (week 7 after surgery). I ordered an ahi tuna appetizer plate with everything except the wonton crisps. So I had 6 or 7 little pieces of ahi tuna with the spicy mayo and soy sauce drizzled over them, oh and a few little pieces of avocado, it was heavenly. I also ate a few pieces of roasted cauliflower from another table-shared appetizer and one piece of shrimp from a shared appetizer. It was parmesan crusted shrimp but I peeled off most of the crust.

I think a good way to manage eating out is to share food with someone or expect to have leftovers. If I share with my husband he knows he gets like 90% of what's on the plate, so he doesn't care. Also, go to nice restaurants like what Arabesque was saying - they use better ingredients and more care in their cooking, PLUS they usually will cater to special requests (like no wonton crisps with my ahi tuna appetizer). When I asked the waitress about different food options I saw on the menu she literally told me "If you see it on the menu, we can make it any way you want", which is the bonus of the nicer restaurants.

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12 hours ago, summerseeker said:

Yes I eat out with friends and family about once a month. I have had some bad meals that I thought were good choices. I find it to be like expensive russian roulette. I have been so ill with the simplest looking choices. I am unable to eat sweet or greasy foods. I have found a Thai restaurant that suits me well, so its a nice treat now and again

My favourite no cook summer food at the moment is - a slice of very crisply toasted seeded bread with smashed avocado and 100 gms of cooked prawns. This gives me 25 + grams of Protein as well as only 350 cals win win

I miss bread so much...lol. That sounds so good.

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My first bought" meal" was a short cap and 1 of the two pack of Bacon cheese egg bites at Starbucks... It was pretty great feeling normal.

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Have you looked into delivery services? When I move to more solid foods I'm going to order from Baribox. I like to cook and plan to not eat out for a long while, but just for varieties sake.

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@Sweetkayl My best friend is the foodsaver. These are a few ideas that work well for "leftovers"

fajita's are a great left over, when my husband and I go eat Mexican, I always take home what's left. I vacuum seal it in one or more bags. It either becomes the next morning Breakfast (mixed with eggs) or for a lunch during the week.

Baked sweet potatoes, also are great. on sunday I will throw a few in the oven and set the oven and then let then sit in there till cool. I cut each one in half, vacuum seal with butter and a tad bit of cinnamon and brown sugar.

Steamed veggies, I love steamed cauliflower. I steam a whole head and cut/portion with a tad of seasoning and butter. I do the same with carrots, green Beans.

Taco meat, I cook up a pound of ground beef/turkey/chicken/deer mix with taco packet. 1/4 cup in each bag. Then I can turn that into salad or mix with refried beans.

Beans, they are great. Today i'm having red beans with diced sausage. (no rice)

All you really need is to make a date with yourself and one day every two week and cook and pre-portion, date it, and freeze it.

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Ooh I almost forgot on of my favorite “no cook” recipes is quiche. They have one made with egg whites at Walmart deli that is 300 calories. If that fits your stage and calorie budget you can slice it and heat up one piece or more at a time. I like it crispy so I like to do it one piece at a time. Just bake it for 28 minutes. I always have one in my fridge for last minute lunch or dinner plans. Also Panera has half salads on Their kids menu which also gives you the option to get yogurt instead of bread or chips. When you can tolerate lettuce. I like to take it to go or bring my own dressing with me though cause most of their dressing's are pretty high calories.

Edited by ShoppGirl

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