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eating out when pregnant- where to go?

(19 Posts)
bumblingalong Tue 09-Jun-09 19:10:22

Hi, am looking for some pregnancy friendly menu's- not even particularly classy places - any high st chains anyone can reccommend?

Have been out for dinner twice since finding out i'm pregnant & really struggling to find things on a menu without shellfish, soft cheese etc, especially in starters which i usually skip & have dessert but at the moment sweet things set off my morning sickness!

MadamAnt Tue 09-Jun-09 19:11:19

Pizza Express?

DV1 Tue 09-Jun-09 19:13:07

Pizza Hut buffet and Nandos

Ewe Tue 09-Jun-09 19:15:28

I am very surprised you are struggling to find stuff. Most places have at least one thing on the menu you can eat. What types of places have you been trying?

You can have things like prawns if they are cooked and served piping hot by the way. Here is the list of things you need to avoid, it isn't that much really.

bumblingalong Tue 09-Jun-09 19:22:06

where we live theres lots of little country pubs & things that do food that we go to but most starters are pate, brie/camenbert, crab, prawns, cured meats etc which usually i love but i am a worrier so tend to avoid everything i'm told to so that leaves me with mushrooms or soup - not a huge fan of either!

have to travel a bit to get to a town so wanted to have definite places before dragging dp there & having him moan if theres still not much choice!

ruddynorah Tue 09-Jun-09 19:22:44

how are you struggling? which soft cheeses are you avoiding? i mean, even if you're avoiding cheese and seafood most menus have steak and chips or lasagne on them don't they? i'm pregnant and wouldn't think twice, PLUS i don't eat meat.

MadamAnt Tue 09-Jun-09 19:31:37

God I find eating out a nightmare! I'm paranoid that the food might not have been washed/handled/cooked properly. I'm waaaaaaaaay too over-cautious about the food rules.

Ewe Tue 09-Jun-09 20:11:08

Italian I would always have either bruschetta, garlic bread or (cooked) prawns in garlic butter to start. Main is easy peasy.

You would be ok with any Indian, Chinese or Thai. French would be good too as you could have steak frites.

Instead of a starter you could always just have a main with a side dish or some bread with dipping oils etc. Most places will do some sort of salad starter too if that takes your fancy.

You can eat camembert and other soft cheeses if they are baked, so camembert in a box is fine as it is generally VERY hot!

bigchris Tue 09-Jun-09 20:12:59

god this is really not an issue

there are usually only a couple of things you cant eat

and you can ask the staff what is thoroughly cooked

don't worry so much smile

IwishIwasmoreorganised Tue 09-Jun-09 20:14:59

Eat anywhere you fancy - really!

ruddynorah Tue 09-Jun-09 20:15:28

this reminds me of seeing a pregnant woman and her mum tutting over the dine in for £10 options in M&S. she was saying she couldn't have any of it because it was fish/meat/seafood/cream/cheese/spicy etc etc..the funniest was them turning their nose up at tiramisu because it would have eggs in it, and caffeine.

Ewe Tue 09-Jun-09 20:19:57

Haha ruddynorah - my SIL was similar, she would hardly eat anything when preggers and when we were on holiday in France for a week or so together, she was a nightmare.

Hard for me to understand as I was very very relaxed about food but I did try to appreciate that most people have a "thing" during pregnancy and food is hers grin

I on the other hand could never relax in the bath for worrying about raising my temp too much! Equally as silly.

KatyS36 Tue 09-Jun-09 20:30:57

Know what you mean about foodie pubs and almost all starters being food that are on the mainstream list!

We've found Zizzi's to be pretty good, and they will alter pizza toppings if you ask nicely. Most italians would also probably do similar. Curry is a good option as well, as most of the ingrediants are fine.

Good luck!

pippa251 Wed 10-Jun-09 08:10:37

I know what you mean we live in the middle of the countryside and most pubs are foodie- pate, prawns etc all donimating the starters and then steak (which I can only eat if it's alive!) and filet of beefs killing the main menu

I have found that Frankie and bennys or TGI Fridays are good but have had a craving for ribs! TBH i'm far more relaxed about it now but can understand your concern like Ewe said we all have something we worry incecantly over

MyNameIsInigoMontoya Wed 10-Jun-09 10:21:18

The main thing I think is to find somewhere you trust; often somewhere you regularly go is the best bet as you will know they are OK and cook the food well. I even ate prawn takeaways last time I was pg (my favourite!) as long as it was from somewhere I trusted and knew they would be thoroughly cooked through.

Problems from food in pregnancy are very rare, and anything that is cooked well should be OK (apart from liver/pate). So seafood, eggs, soft/blue cheese, cured meats etc are ALL fine if they are cooked. Also anything pasteurised is fine even if not cooked (e.g. some soft cheeses in supermarkets ARE pasteurised so you can have camembert etc if you check the labels!).

The cured meat thing seems a bit debatable too, a lot of the "official" advice doesn't mention anything about avoiding it. We holidayed in Italy when I was pg where it was REALLY hard to avoid cured meat, sheep or blue cheese etc so several times I ended up just eating it anyway!

HuffwardlyRudge Wed 10-Jun-09 10:23:26

Am amazed this would be a problem. I can't remember ever not finding things to eat in a restaurant while pg and we eat out quite a bit.

Treats Wed 10-Jun-09 12:41:54

Actually I agree. We went out last night for DH's birthday and I had just this problem. The starters are the worst - last night there were two types of pate, one with goat's cheese, one with cured meat and one with shellfish. The only option I could eat safely was the chilled tomato soup - which didn't really rock my boat to be honest.

Mains are a bit easier, but steak is no fun if you're preference is for rare or medium - you have to have it well cooked if you're pregnant. The trouble with the posher places is that they include all sorts of extras on the plate. I had belly pork (which is fine), but it came with a potato and chorizo gratin (and chorizo isn't fine). I went with it on the basis that it's bound to be well cooked if it's part of a gratin, but I think you do have to be really well informed about what the dangers are in order to be able to make these decisions. The midwives/ doctors have just told me not to eat cured meats, but if you do a bit more reading, you find out that this is because of the risk of listeria, but listeria germs are killed at high temperatures so well cooked meats are fine.

Puddings are a nightmare because you can never be sure that they don't have raw eggs in them. Probably easier in the cheaper places, because they're less likely to make their own and anything they buy in will have had to have been pasteurised.

Sorry - lengthy post - but I do sympathise with the OP and think that the only answer is to be as well informed as you can be about the risks and make your own decisions.

And it's true that there's always SOMETHING you can eat but if you're greedy a foodie like me, it's frustrating when the only option is the blandest thing on the menu.

Treats Wed 10-Jun-09 12:44:49

After all that, I didn't answer the OP's question. Try anywhere Italian - Strada, Pizza Express, Zizzi, etc. - because they do a wide variety of pizzas, so you should be able to find something (even if it's just a margharita) and they always offer pasta alternatives, which are usually fine if you avoid the seafood ones. HTH

greenelephant Wed 10-Jun-09 12:46:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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