Menu Labeling Guidelines Released (Recipe: Chicken Spaghetti)

Back in July, FDA conceded that chain restaurants and other establishments needed more time to comply with the December 2015 menu labeling deadline and agreed to a one-year delay for businesses to post calorie disclosures. Chain establishments, such as bakeries, cafeterias, convenience stores, delis, bowling alleys, movie theatres, and grocery stores, must display calories and provide nutrition information under the menu labeling law by
December 2016.

On Sept. 11, FDA issued the 53-page draft guidance, A Labeling Guide for Restaurants and Retail Establishments Selling Away-From-Home Foods – Part II. 53 pages! This guidance is intended to help establishments implement the rule and better understand the
flexibility in the rule.

The Q&A draft document provides specific examples of covered establishments, and answers questions on determining the nutrient value of restaurant-like foods or declaring calories on menus and menu boards, including calculations for multi-serving items such as pizzas. The supermarket industry has raised questions on a range of issues, such as the definition of “restaurant-type food” and technical issues on nutritional databases and signage.

For example, cold prepared foods that (1) are sold from behind a deli counter, (2) do not appear on a menu or menu board, and (3) require further preparation by the consumer before consumption would not be considered a ‘restaurant type food’ and therefore, would not be subject to the nutrition labeling requirements.

In another example, FDA says a two-piece barbecue chicken lunch or a slice of pizza routinely included on a menu or menu board, or offered at a hot self-service buffet, would be covered and the covered establishment would be required to provide calorie and other nutrition information for such menu item.

But this information is new to me: Let’s take the example of a pizza coupon. This coupon includes a phone number to place the order and that states ‘1 large pepperoni and sausage pizza $9.99,’ the ‘coupon’ can be used by a consumer to make an order selection at the time a consumer is viewing the coupon (i.e., the coupon includes the name of the standard menu item, price of the standard menu item and a phone number where an order can be placed). Therefore, in this situation, the coupon would be considered a menu (and not simply a coupon) and would be required to include a calorie declaration for the listed standard menu item. I had no idea!

I’ll keep you posted.

So, I went on a run this morning. It has been a week since I donated blood (the Red Cross came to RTI last week–I have donated about a gallon and a half of blood over the last 4 years and that is with me being intermittent since I don’t donate while training and I often have low iron). However, I could still feel the effects of it on my run this morning! Granted, I have done some tough workouts this week. I have trained with my personal trainer twice, done weight training on my own twice, spent lots of time on the elliptical, did a slow 2 mile run with the girls one evening, spent time on the stepper and the stair climber, AND did a hard RPM cycling class last night. (I know, right!? I have pushed myself this week!) However, the run wiped me out this morning! I felt like I had run 14 miles instead of 4 miles. Although, I will say that even though we both felt crappy (we = Shawn and me), we kept an 8:15 pace. Not too shabby.

Oh! In other news, A bought a Furminator. That thing is awesome. And Callie just loved being brushed the other night. Envy tolerated it but was happy when it was over. The Furminator confirmed the fact that Envy sheds WAY more than Callie does. WAY more. Now we need to get into the habit of brushing them frequently!

Pictures from Tioga Pass and our drive as we left Yosemite!! It was a very scenic drive out of the park, and A did all the driving! What a stellar guy!

IMG_3202 DSC_0733 DSC_0730 DSC_0713 DSC_0721 DSC_0724

2 years ago: AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill (Recipe: Middle Eastern Chicken Marinade)

Quote of the Day:

“I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” -Michael Jordan

So, this is the second time I’ve made this recipe. It feeds an army. No joke. It makes a TON of food. But I wasn’t super impressed with it this time. It’s tasty but not ‘oh my goodness I want this for my next 6 meals’–which is pretty much what happened.

Chicken Spaghetti

Chicken Spaghetti


  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 (14 ounce) can chicken broth
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can cream of chicken soup
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano
  • 3 breasts of chicken cooked and chopped
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 (16 ounce) package angel hair pasta, cooked
  • 3/4 cup panko
  • 1 tablespoon butter


  • Preheat oven to 350* and spray a 9×13 inch pan with cooking spray.
  • In a medium skillet, over medium-high heat, cook onion until tender.
  • In a large bowl, combine onion, broth, soups, tomatoes, mushrooms, sour cream, and salt.
  • Stir in chicken and cheese. Add pasta, tossing gently to coat.
  • Spoon mixture into prepared baking dish.
  • In a small bowl, combine bread crumbs and melted butter. Sprinkle evenly over casserole.
  • Bake about 35 minutes or until bubbly.
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