Too busy, hot, or tired to cook? These ready-to-serve options from the deli, salad bar, and supermarket will help you get food on the table quickly, saving you money on takeout while sticking to your diet. From The New Atkins Made Easy.
A word of caution: many foods in delis and salad bars are full of high-carb ingredients, so ask questions, read labels, and avoid meats cured with nitrates or made with bread crumbs and other fillers, starchy sauces, and salads with added sugar.
From the Deli
• Rotisserie-roasted chicken; chicken, tuna, egg, whitefish, or shrimp salad; smoked salmon; grilled, roasted, poached, or broiled chicken; chopped liver
• Ham, pastrami, corned beef, salami,* brisket, roast or smoked turkey, grilled chicken breast
• Sauerkraut, pickles, pickled green beans, pickled mushrooms, cucumber salad, coleslaw
From the Salad Bar
• Grilled, roasted, or baked turkey, salmon, tuna, and chicken; grilled or steamed shrimp; tofu; hard-boiled eggs; deviled eggs
• Grilled, braised, or steamed broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, green beans, and other foundation veggies (without problematic sauces)
• Salad greens, tomatoes, avocado, and other salad veggies
• Olives, hummus (in Phase 2), baba ganoush (eggplant dip)
• Berries and melon balls (in Phase 2); additional fruit (in Phase 3 or 4)
• Nuts, seeds, crumbled bacon, grated cheese
• Feta cheese, Cheddar cheese, etc.
• Vinaigrette, blue cheese, or ranch dressing
• What to avoid: meats and fish with starchy sauces, croutons, crunchy noodles, bean salads (unless you’re in Phase 2), pasta salads, and other composed salads with off-limits ingredients; imitation crab (surimi); sushi; stuffed grape leaves; crackers.
From the Supermarket
In addition to the pantry staples listed above, check out:
• Bumble Bee fully cooked salmon fillets or albacore tuna steaks, which come in convenient 4-ounce portions
• Bagged coleslaw and washed and bagged salad mixes
• Trimmed and cut-up vegetables and fruits
Put It All Together
Here are a few no‑cook combos for busy nights:
• Grilled chicken with green beans and salad from the salad bar
• A bagged salad topped with a tuna steak and asparagus
• Corned beef with sauerkraut and cucumber salad
• Smoked turkey over coleslaw with ranch dressing
• Sliced panino, sliced ham, and antipasto items such as marinated artichoke hearts, roasted bell peppers, mushrooms, olives, and feta cheese
• Grated zucchini topped with a salmon steak and pesto
* Avoid products with nitrates