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Weight Watchers Simple Start

Weight Watchers Simple Start
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Weight Watchers Simple Start

Weight Watchers is now recommending that everyone try their Simple Start program for two weeks to jump start their weight loss. The Simple Start is an easy way for you to ease into Weight Watchers and not get overwhelmed. I currently do the Simply Filling method, which is what I'm going to tell you about.

Here's how it works:

This program is similar to others WW has tried in the past, but it's very basic – and easy to follow. Visit the official Weight Watchers site for more info!

No measuring, no writing down what you eat, no guessing, no counting. The only thing you track are your “indulgences”.

You eat your meals and snacks from an approved list of Power Foods. You eat as much as you want, when you want to eat it. Indulgence is allowed, but no more than 7 PointsPlus each day. These are the only foods you have to track.

Power Foods are fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fat-free dairy, lean proteins, seasonings, and healthy oils. You can drink water, coffee, tea, and diet soda.

To use the Simple Start app, you have to be a Weight Watchers member (and e-tools subscriber). You can, however, download the Simple Start Food List for free!

Fortunately, the list of approved foods is pretty long.

POWER FOODS LIST (sample – not FULL list)

All fresh, frozen, or canned without added sugar
Fruit canned in its own juice (drained)
Fruit salad—mixed fruits with no added sugar

Most fresh, frozen, or canned without added sugar or oil
Potatoes—white, red, and sweet
Not included:
French fries

Whole Grains
Brown and wild rice
Hot cereals like Cream of rice, or wheat oatmeal
Pasta, whole-wheat or other whole-grain varieties
Popcorn, air-popped or light microwave-popped, or 94% fat-free
Whole-grain, ready-to-eat cereals with ≤ 1gm sugar, ≥ 3 gm fiber per
serving, no dried fruits or nuts (such as shredded wheat or
toasted oats)

Fat-Free Dairy & Dairy Substitutes
Fat-free cheeses including cottage, ricotta and cream cheese
Fat-free milk and beverages made with fat-free milk, such as:
Cappuccino or latte, as long as it’s sugar-free
Fat-free yogurt plain, regular or Greek, and light yogurts
Fat-free sour cream
Unflavored soy cheese
Unflavored soy milk

Lean Proteins
Beans, dried and canned, including black,
cannellini, kidney, refried, and white
Beef, chicken, lamb, pork, turkey, and veal: lean, trimmed, and all
skin removed
Dried peas, including black-eyed peas and
split peas
Most fish and shellfish: fresh, frozen, and canned in water

Included breads:
Light English muffins
Light hot dog and hamburger rolls
Reduced-calorie (light) breads or rolls, flats and thin sandwich bread

Included soups:
Reduced/Low sodium broth-, tomato-, and vegetable-based soups

Included desserts:
Sugar-free gelatin

2 tsp oil per day (olive, canola, safflower, sunflower, and flaxseed)
Cocktail sauce
Extracts (such as vanilla and almond)
Fat-free mayonnaise
Fat-free salad dressings (≤ 300 mg sodium)
Fat-free salsa
Fat-free sour cream
Soy sauce, reduced sodium
Sugar substitutes
Steak sauce
Taco Sauce
Teriyaki sauce, reduced sodium

Helpful article: Ultimate Weight Watchers Recipes Collection (Plus Tools to Get You Started and Keep You on Track!)

This post walks you through the Simple Start booklet and gives a simple overview of what to expect, what you can eat, etc.

Remember, you can do Weight Watchers for FREE by following these simple steps! No gimmicks, no tricks.

The basic principle of Weight Watchers is very simple: everything in moderation. As long as you keep that in mind, you'll stay on track without any issue!

Download the free points tracker/calculator app!

Visit the official Weight Watchers website to view sample meals for the Simple Start Program.

Love Weight Watchers? Download my FREE Cookbook!

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Laurie Bennett

Laurie Bennett

Site Owner
I share delicious, Weight Watchers - Friendly recipes and chat regularly about online business & blogging!!


  1. This sounds like the Core program they had several years ago. I did the Core plan & it worked really well for me (at the time since I’ve gained all the weight back dang it!)

  2. While I understand that cost can be an issue, I have to add that as a WW employee I find it sad that you are posting our info for free. I work tirelessly to support & encourage ppl every day to help them reach their goals- it’s not for the $$ that I do it. It’s the support of the group that helps ppl each week to stay motivated, giving this out here takes ppl away from help that might encourage them and also there are some errors in the information.

    1. Weight loss support is for everyone, not just those that can afford expensive meetings and programs. Weight Watchers is a wonderful program, and thankfully they’ve put the information out there for us to be ABLE to do it for free. I appreciate it! :)

      1. Thank you for the information on simple start! I am a lifetime WW but gained back all pounds plus. I really appreciate the freebee as I have probably paid WW a lifetime of cash already. Also did WW online for a while.
        I have Dr. support this time, knees need a break!

    2. I for one am thankful that she posted the info. It was enough to help me try it out and make an educated decision as to whether it will work for me. I don’t have the money for weekly meetings, nor for online cost. I don’t have the time for meetings as none of them in my area are times that I am able to do, unless they were to offer free child care during the meeting. I am looking at options through our health insurance as well. I figure I will do a 12 week program, somewhere, that will help me kind of kick start the weight loss and get the tools I need to change my habits. That is the summer months when my time constraint is a bit more flexible. Then I will change over to do what is easiest for my situation.

      1. Thanks so much for the information. I downloaded the list from you and started on March 28. As of today I have lost 39lbs!!! I don’t eat any sugar except for the fruit and the little bit in my Dannon light and fit greek yogart that I eat usually twice a day. My 13 year old lost 17lbs and she isn’t ‘dieting’. She only eats what is in the house which are now only foods from the list.
        I didn’t want to go to the meetings because I live in a small town and am not a fan of the leader.
        Thanks for your blog and your information. I am committed to this and for the first time in my life I will be thin at Christmas

    3. I think you are being a bit harsh on Louise. She is not a WW leader for the money… That’s just absurd. Some of the leaders I have met put a lot of work in to planning meetings and gas getting there… I imagine they barely break even.

      That said, ww is incredibly expensive and I am glad that Healthy information on how to lose weight is available to everyone. Lord knows crash diets are free to find. Access to information that could save lives should not be cost prohibitive… And shame on anyone thinking so.

      My guess is Louise may have been trying to say that people who try ww on their own without proper explanation and support tend to miss key elements and quickly fail. Then become frustrated and think it doesn’t work and therefore never get the chance to Really get the potential benefits.

  3. Louise, if you cared so much for people as you have stated…and it’s not about the you have also stated, then why are u so upset that this info was shared for “free”, yet you illude that there are errors in this..You wouldn’t be so snarky if it wasn’t dead on right. If you really care like you are so proud to say of yourself, than why would you not have corrected it and just mention people that although this is great, there are always WW meetings to help with their personal needs? This makes me never want to step into a WW building EVER! You’re in it to make fat cash. Pun intended..just sad it’s true

  4. I am looking this over and considering giving it a try. I am gluten free so that would be a factor. My question is, are there other materials not included on the list above? For example, I see “extra treats” on the list with a quantity listed, by not “indulgences.”

    How do you know how much you can have of something? Do I follow serving sizes on the box of the product? For example pinto beans are on the list…but with no quantity. They can’t possibly be unlimited, so how do I know how much to eat? Just until I am satisfied? That could be a whole can! If I was easily satisfied, I wouldn’t need to lose weight.

    I also have no idea what salad cream or bacon medallions are. I have never seen them on any WW list I have had. (but I am just mentioning it here.

    1. The Simple Start is also known as “Simply Filling”. You fill up on the healthy foods in “unlimited” amounts and then the idea is that you’re not going to pig out on the unhealthy foods. I get 7 points each day on the “extras”, and the others have to be on the list. Obviously if you’re serious about losing weight you’re not going to eat an entire can of beans. You’re going to prepare a meal that is healthy but filling. :)

      1. Simple Start and Simply Filling are NOT the same thing. Misinformation is what happens when people post information without proper knowledge of the subject. Simple Start is more restrictive than Simply Filling. Simply Filling is meant to be used for life. Simple Start is meant to be used for a two week period of time.

        1. Actually, my WW instructor told me to use Simply Filling technique for the first two weeks, then go to counting points – so as stated in the article, “this is how you do the simply filling portion”. Misinformation is bad. Not reading is worse.

          STRAIGHT from Weight Watchers:

          Doing Simple Start gets you in the habit of eating a variety of satisfying, nutritious foods, which is why it’s not just for newbies. If you’ve hit a plateau or just want to try something fun and new, Simple Start is the perfect way to get back on the horse! (And after the hectic and indulgent holiday season, who couldn’t use a no-brainer kickoff?)

          The meals and snacks in Simple Start are built from Weight Watchers Power Foods and certain healthy oils, with some condiments and seasonings to boost flavor. New members will learn that Power Foods fill you up faster and keep you satisfied longer, which can help you avoid the types of foods that lead to overeating. For example, fresh fruits, most vegetables, some lean proteins, whole grains and fat-free dairy are Power Foods. Print the complete Power Foods list now. And because of the type of foods you’ll be eating, you won’t have to worry about portions! There are just two exceptions:

          Healthy oils. Include 2 tsps. per day, total
          Indulgences. You have 7 PointsPlus® values per day to spend on treats

  5. I recently started simple start but am a bit confused on my FatFree Hazelnut creamer I use in my coffee….I have been counting as an indulgence but I just realized I may not have to if it’s the FatFree & not just SugarFree….am I right in thinking this??

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