Low Carb Recipes for the Low Carb Lifestyle

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Atkins Italian Sausage Primavera Review

Let's start with a random tidbit!  My parents were *THIS* close to naming me Primavera.  Instead she chose Tamara (Layla is my youngest daughter).  Since that's what I thought about when I first saw this meal, you get to now think about it too!  So on to the real stuff.  This frozen dinner almost, kind of, sort of looks like the photo on the box.  More so than some other dinners.  The yellowish sauce on the box is drizzled on so it's not as yellow as the real meal.  However the veggies and meat really do look similar and are a great quality in my opinion.  Sometimes I have a real issue with the meat in frozen dinners as the quality is pretty dreadful.  I can see why we are paying a bit more for these than some other frozen dinners (I paid $3.98 at Walmart, which is the only place I've found them).  The price is worth it for the quality of the ingredients and just the fact that us low carbers have a frozen meal option!  I wouldn't say to eat one of these every day as real, fresh food is always going to be better than any frozen item full of preservatives.  However, I plan to keep one or two of these in my freezer to use for emergencies or lazy-days.

1 serving
5 net carbs per serving

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Marinated Beef Kabobs

Apologies for the "blurry" photo.  That's actually smoke coming off the grill.  I forgot to take a photo while plated and went straight to devouring these so this in-process grilling photo is the only one I have.  This was a great basic recipe from Kalyns Kitchen.  I wouldn't change a thing.  She recommends using tri-tip, london broil, top sirloin or top loin.  If you use a tougher cut of meat, marinade for longer.

4 servings
3.75 net carbs per serving

2 pounds beef, cut into cubes
2 TBSP beef stock (or red wine)
2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp steak seasoning (watch ingredients for sugar)
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
black pepper to taste
2 bay leaves (optional)

Mix all ingredients together and pour into a ziploc bag with beef cubes.  Marinate at least 4-6 hours (or even overnight is fine). If using wooden skewers, make sure to soak in water at least 30 minutes so they don't catch on fire.  When ready to cook, preheat grill to medium-high.  Grill kabobs to your desired doneness.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Cheddar Baked Chicken

Cheddar Baked Chicken

This was definitely a family pleaser.  Everyone including the baby liked them (I made the kids portions into smaller pieces like chicken nuggets and cooked for less time).  You can't really go wrong with what is basically chicken nuggets with cheddar mixed in.  Yum!  If you don't have almond flour, I think that coconut flour or low carb bake mix would probably work fine too.  You could probably even skip the initial step of dredging in flour if you don't have any low carb flours available to you.  If you skip the flour, these would be *INDUCTION FRIENDLY*.

3 servings
other nutrition per serving: 527 cal; 34.66g fat; 51.33g protein

1/2 cup almond flour *omit flour to make Induction friendly*
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1 egg, beaten
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 1/2 cups crushed pork rinds
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Coat baking dish in oil of preference to make non-stick.  Mix the almond flour, pepper and garlic powder in a bowl (I use a small plate to help with dredging chicken later).  Set aside.  Pour beaten egg into another bowl, set aside.  In a 3rd bowl/plate mix the cheddar cheese and crushed pork rinds.  Dredge chicken in flour mixture, then dip in eggs, then dip in cheddar cheese/pork rinds mixture, making sure to press coating down into chicken on all sides.  Put in baking dish and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Lemon Caper Chicken

Lemon Caper Chicken
This is a great simple recipe that tastes like something more complex.  I used to make this one back in my carb-etarian days but used white flour back then.  If you aren't familiar, capers are yummy little tang/vinegar fun balls.  Yup, I just wrote "fun balls" and I'm not going to change it.  If you don't have both almond and coconut flours, use whatever low carb flour you have and it will taste just fine.  I prefer the combo because coconut flour gives you the closest texture to white flour, however it sucks all of the moisture out of whatever you are cooking so a mix yields the best results in my opinion.

2 servings
3.6 net carbs per serving

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 TBSP almond flour
1 TBSP coconut flour
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp parsley
1/4 tsp seasoned salt
pepper to taste
1 egg
2 TBSP olive oil (or oil of choice)
1 TBSP fresh lemon juice (about 1 medium lemon)
2 tsp jarred capers
1/3 cup chicken broth
1/8 tsp guar gum (optional)

Cut each chicken breast in half horizontally so you have 2 thin cutlets from each breast.  On a plate, combine almond flour, coconut flour, paprika, parsley, seasoned salt and pepper.  Mix together.  On a separate plate, scramble egg.  Preheat a skillet with oil over medium-high heat.  Dip chicken in egg then dredge through flour mixture, making sure to cover both sides with mixture.  Cook chicken for about 4-5 minutes per side.  Once chicken is cooked through, remove from pan and plate.  Add lemon juice, capers and chicken broth to the same pan.  Stir sauce, making sure to scrape all of the yummy browned bits left over from cooking chicken.  Once heated through, pour over chicken on each plate.  Sauce is very thin.  If you prefer to thicken a bit, add the guar gum, stirring constantly.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Crockpot Tangy Pork Roast

Crockpot Tangy Pork Roast
Great recipe.  I would say that this could be good enough for company, even carb-etarian company!  I've made this twice, once with 1/4 cup Splenda (subbing for the sugar called for in the ORIGINAL RECIPE) and the second time without any Splenda at all.  The entire family agreed that the sweetness was a bit odd with the rest of the flavors so I would recommend not using any sweetener or just a pinch to cut through the tang of the red wine vinegar.  I'm writing it below without any sweetener as I thought that had the best flavor.  The original recipe also called for a bit of ketchup but I used a tomato paste that had no added sugars.  You could also use the Heinz Less Sugar Ketchup.  Whichever you have on hand.

6 servings (original said 8 but 6 is more realistic)
2.3 net carbs per serving

1 onion, sliced
2 1/2 pound boneless pork roast
1/2 cup hot water
3 TBSP red wine vinegar
2 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP less sugar ketchup (or no sugar added tomato paste)
1/2 tbsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp garlic powder
a few dashes of hot pepper sauce (tabasco or tapatio, etc)
1 tsp of guar gum (optional to thicken sauce at end)

Arrange the onion slices evenly over the bottom of the crockpot. Place the roast on top of the onion.  In a bowl, mix together water, vinegar, soy sauce, ketchup, black pepper, salt, garlic powder, and hot sauce.  Pour mixture over roast.  Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-4 hours.  If you want to thicken the sauce, remove and plate the roast and onions.  With the sauce still in the crockpot, sprinkle guar gum on sauce and stir.  Guar gum creates a bit of a jell-like sauce, not creamy so be aware of the texture, as you can see in my photo.  Pour sauce over roast and onions.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Low-Carbing Among Friends volume 3!

Ooohhh, looky look what came in the mail today!  I have two recipes in this awesome compilation from some of the top low-carb bloggers.  Order your copy of Low-Carbing Among Friends volume 3 now!  http://amongfriends.us/preorder.php

Monday, January 28, 2013

Laughing Cow Creamed Spinach

Laughing Cow Creamed Spinach
It's no secret that I like to use Laughing Cow spread wedges to make creamy sauces.  Just type Laughing Cow into the search box on the top right of my page and you'll see all the yummy sauces I've made with these magic wedges!  I've already posted a creamed spinach recipe as SOUR CREAM SPINACH but this one is made with my beloved Laughing Cow so I figured there's room for two on my blog.  I made it with half of an onion, which I thought was too much so I've written the recipe to only be 1/4 of an onion.  This was very creamy so if you like the taste of the spinach to shine through, you might want to reduce the Laughing Cow wedges from 4 to 2 or 3.  This was super simple to prepare, tasted great and the Hubs enjoyed so this was a winner all around!

2 servings
4.4 net carbs per serving

1 TBSP butter
1/4 onion, chopped
4 Laughing Cow wedges of any savory flavor (I used garlic & herb)
6 ounces fresh spinach
1 tsp red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in large skillet over medium.  Saute chopped onion until translucent and soft.  Add Laughing Cow wedges and break them up, smash and stir them until melted (at this point is will look like a train wreck glob and you will think I'm crazy but just trust me, it will melt down to a sauce).  Add the spinach.  Once it starts wilting and breaking down (just a minute or two), add the red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.  Stir and mix until spinach is wilted to the consistency you like and the Laughing Cow is fully mixed through (usually just 3 or 4 minutes). *INDUCTION FRIENDLY*

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Atkins Crustless Chicken Pot Pie Review

Atkins Crustless Chicken Pot Pie
click to enlarge
My Super Walmart FINALLY put these little gems in the freezer section.  So let's start with the obvious.  It does not look like the photo.  That's pretty normal for frozen meals so it wasn't much of a shock.  They are 5 net carbs for 9 ounces.  That's fairly large for a frozen meal, most of the low calories frozen meals are closer to 6 or 7 ounces.  I had this for lunch and it didn't have me stuffed but it satisfied me until time for an afternoon snack.  Now on to the important stuff, the taste.  This tasted good!  The chicken was pretty decent (I don't like the quality of the chicken in some brands of low calorie frozen meals), the veggies were plentiful and the sauce was great!  I don't think it really tasted like a pot pie but if you ignore the name of it, then it was very good.  The price point is higher than the low calorie frozen dinners (I think I paid $3.89) but you can't complain considering us low carbers finally have frozen dinners again!

1 serving
5 net carbs per serving

Monday, January 14, 2013

Caribbean Baked Fish

Caribbean Baked Fish
Oh my this was good!  I will certainly be making this one again.  I also can't wait to try it with chicken.  Yum!    This was super easy to make and had lots of flavor.  You just mix the ingredients together for the sauce and pour it over the fish.  Ta-da!

2 servings
4.3 net carbs per serving

juice of 1 lime
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 TBSP tomato paste
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
salt to taste
2 4-5 ounce white fish fillets (tilapia, catfish, swai, etc)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly grease baking dish (with oil or nonstick spray).  Rinse fish and pat dry.  Place fish in baking dish.  In a separate bowl, mix all other ingredients until thoroughly combined and tomato paste is broken down.  Pour over fish.  Bake for 18-20 minutes.  Plate fish and pour extra sauce in baking dish over plated fish.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shake

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shake
So good and so easy!  I've had one of these every day for the last week or so.  I almost never do that as I'm pretty adventurous with food and love to try different things.  The taste will vary and the carb count will vary depending on your brand of chocolate protein powder.  Just try to find the lowest carb one you can.  I buy mine at Walmart and is 2 net carbs per scoop.  You can reduce the carb count in the recipe pretty easily by using only 1 scoop of protein powder.

1 serving
7 net carbs per serving

ice (4 or 5 ice cubes)
1/2 cup unsweetened chocolate almond milk
1/2 cup water
2 scoops chocolate low carb protein powder
1 TBSP natural peanut butter (ingredients should only be peanut butter and salt)

Throw it all into a Magic Bullet or whatever blending device you have and blend for 30 seconds or so.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Green Enchilada Casserole

Green Enchilada Casserole
Oh, oh, oh this was good!  My entire carb-etarian family enjoyed this one, including the toddlers.  Casseroles are great comfort food on a cold day and an easy way to use leftover chicken or any other meat from a previous meal.  I made with leftover turkey from an early Christmas I did with out of town family.  However, I'm writing the recipe using chicken since that's what most people have as leftovers on a regular basis.  This recipe is an adaptation from this ENCHILADA BAKE recipe, which is made with red sauce and ground beef.  PS.  This crust is fabulous as a PIZZA CRUST too!

8 servings
4 net carbs per serving

1 teaspoon chili powder (add more if you want it spicier)
3/4 teaspoon paprika
3/4 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/8 teaspoon garlic powder
Pinch cayenne  

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon Seasoning for Tacos
8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded 

Beat or whisk the cream cheese and eggs until smooth. Add the seasoning; mix well. Stir in the cheese; mix well. Grease a 9 x 13" baking dish; spread the cheese mixture evenly over the bottom. Bake at 350ยบ, 35 minutes or until browned, but not too dark. Let stand 5-10 minutes before adding the topping. 

1 pound shredded or chopped cooked chicken 
1 tablespoon Seasoning for Tacos 
8 1/2 ounce jar green enchilada sauce 
4 ounce can chopped green chiles 
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded 

Warm the pre-cooked chicken. Stir in the seasoning, green enchilada sauce and chiles. Spread over the crust. Top with the cheese. Bake another 20 minutes or so until hot and bubbly. Serve with the toppings of your choice (add additional carbs). 

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Peanut Butter Coconut Flour Cookies

Peanut Butter Coconut Cookies

Ahhhh...peanut butter cookies.  I love that peanut butter is a yes on the low carb list of goodies!  I wish I could take credit for these lovely cookies, but I pulled the recipe from Your Lighter Side who said she got them from Candice.  All of my kids and my Hubs enjoyed these, without them being wise that they were anything different than "normal" peanut butter cookies.  The cookies were sitting on the counter when my carb-etarian Hubs got home from work.  He plopped one in his mouth and instantly said "These are great, I can't wait to dunk them in a glass of milk."  He was shocked when I said that they were low carb.  Usually I don't cook with straight coconut flour, opting more for a coconut flour and almond flour mixture.  However I was intrigued by these since Candice (through Your Lighter Side) said that she made them with just coconut flour in order to make them more filling so you'll eat less.  I do think the taste might be a tad better if it was a mixture since these were a tiny bit dry (coconut flour zaps moisture out of recipes so that was expected) but they really were more filling than traditional cookies and they tasted really good.  It took my family and I about 4 days to eat the whole batch and I noticed that they got a bit drier each day.  I would suggest eating these within a day or two for best flavor.

(my batch made 40 small bite size cookies)
55.23 net carbs per entire batch ; 1.38 net carb per cookie assuming 40 cookies per batch

1/2 cup coconut flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp kosher salt (omit if your peanut butter is salted)

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temp
3/4 cup natural sugar free peanut butter (and salt free if you can find)
3/4 cup granulated Splenda (or your sweetener of choice)
3 eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  In a small bowl mix coconut flour, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.  In a separate bowl, mix butter & peanut butter with a mixer until combined.  Slowly add in Splenda and mix until fluffy and thoroughly combined.  Add eggs one at a time while mixer is running.  Add vanilla extract and mix until thoroughly combined.  Slowly add the coconut flour/baking soda and salt mixture.  Once combined, mix on med/high until mixture is smooth.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a baking liner.  Using hands (I find it easier but use a spoon if you are more comfortable) scoop about 1 TBSP worth of dough and roll into a ball, approximately 1 inch wide.  Place ball on cookie sheet.  Cookies do not rise much so they can be set fairly close to each other.  Using a greased fork (I sprayed with Pam) press down on each ball left to right, then top to bottom, making peanut butter cookie traditional crisscross pattern.  Bake for 8-10 minutes (I made each batch with slightly different times and preferred the least cooked cookies, at 8 minutes).