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Kid Lovin’ Chicken

“It’s Shake ‘n’ Bake! And I helped!!”

Do you remember that commercial? When I first started cooking, that stuff was always in my cabinets. I bet I had a dozen recipes that called for it.

This works the same, but in a healthier way.

Serves 8
Per Serving
Calories 399
Carbs 4 grams

Ingredients
½ cup Nonfat Dry Milk Powder
¾ cup Parmesan
1 T Paprika
½ T each Thyme, Garlic Powder and Black Pepper
3 pounds Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

Preheat oven to 350°F. Slice chicken lengthwise for strips or widthwise for nuggets. About ½” thick. In a large container with a lid, mix all the dry ingredients together. Add chicken and shake! Lightly spray or grease baking pan(s). Spread chicken in single layer on pan(s). Bake for 30 minutes. Serve.

Better than the Pub Poppers

I love jalapeño! When I can find them crispy with perfect heat, I will eat them every meal until I run out. I’ve had zero luck growing my own. Fingers crossed, this is the year!!!!

The standard low carb recipe for poppers, however, always leaves me kinda bummed. It’s good. Well, oven fresh they are good. But, to serve them for a get together….well, you are going to have leftovers. They get soggy, they don’t crunch. I think a good popper should snap when you bite it and ooze completely yummy stuff into your mouth.

Do you agree?

First, ditch the oven. That heat is losing your crispy goodness.

Nutrition. As figured by me. Yikes! I promise I double checked my math.
Per Popper
Calories 79
Carbs 2 grams

Makes 18 poppers
4 ounces Cream Cheese, softened
½ cup sour cream
6 ounces bacon cooked crisp and crumbled OR ½ f a 2.5 oz package of real bacon pieces
¼ whole Red Onion, diced finely
2 cloves roasted garlic, or garlic powder to taste
4 ounces Cheddar Cheese, shredded
18 jalapeños, raw, whole

Beat cream cheese, sour cream, bacon, onion, garlic, and cheddar until fairly smooth. Cut off the top of your peppers. Put on protective gloves and safety glasses. Cut a slit down one long side of each pepper, scrape out seeds and membranes carefully so you don’t break the pepper completely. Stuff with mixture and press back together. Serve or cover and refrigerate.

Recipe Notes:
If you’ve never done your own crumbles before, the method I like (remember I am very lazy) is cook and drain your bacon put all of it on paper towels in the freezer, wait a few hours and crush it with your hands.

Not everyone digs heat. I totally get that. Swap mini sweet peppers for the jalapeños and done.

Some people love heat. Swap jalapeños for habaneros and halve the filling.

Zuccoti

Zuccotti – A Low Carb Manicotti

Manicotti is crazy important in my house. It was one of those dishes that I revised before ever making and it was an instant hit. However, I hate making it. It is messy and time consuming.

I only made it for special occasions, especially my first born’s birthday. There are no parties for birthdays in our house. The kids get a present and they get to pick their homemade dinner and dessert. There have been times a party would have been cheaper and less work. For example, manicotti was most commonly served with oven fried chicken, chocolate on chocolate cake and homemade coffee ice cream.

There are no birthdays for a couple weeks but I’m missing my angel, so I broke out the notepad and pans. I hope you like it.

Serves 6. Per Serving
511 Calories and 16 g Carbohydrates

Ingredients
½ cup Salt (optional)
Large bowl of water (optional)
6 Zucchini
1 pound ground sausage (mild, medium or hot)
4.5 ounces sliced black olives
2 large eggs
1 cup Ricotta Cheese
Garlic, Basil, and black pepper to taste
1 ½ cups Marinara or sauce of your choice
2 cups Shredded Mozzarella

Cut ends off and peel zucchini down to white. Core zucchini. I found the best way to do this was the saw thingy that came out of one of those jack o lantern kits.

This next part is totally optional. Mix the salt and water together and brine the zucchini for half an hour. Let drain completely on towels while you prepare the rest.
Crumbled, brown and drain the sausage. Drain the olives.
Mix olives, sausage, ricotta, eggs and seasoning in a bowl.
Stuff zucchini with mixture.
Lay stuffed zucchini in a lightly sprayed 9 * 13 pan.
Distribute leftover mixture evenly along the tops of your stuffed zucchini.
Top with sauce and cheese.
Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes.
Serve.

We served ours with Salad and a low carb cheese bread that is just amazing.

MrsBMcV’s Comfort Pork

Right now I’m concentrating on comfort food. Cindy was telling me about Brunswick Stew, which, I had never heard of nor have ever tasted. It’s a Southern dish, in general, consisting of barbecue leftovers. No one makes it exactly the same and everyone is positive their way is the way it should be made. And, dear heavens, do NOT ask where it originated.

Anyway, after loads of notes on different types of Brunswick stew and the makings of Carolina style barbecue sauce (sorry, Georgia!), I wrote up a low carb reconstructed version.

It turned out awesome but I wouldn’t dare call it Low Carb Brunswick. It tastes sweet and sour with a barbecue-y undertone. The vinegar smell is very strong the first couple hours it’s in the oven, after that, it smells like you are hosting a pretty nice barbecue. The nutrition info is as if you divided the dish evenly into 8, but we didn’t consume most of the liquid.

Nutrition per serving.
Calories 416
Fat 26 g
Carbs 14 g

Ingredients
8 pork chops (around 2 pounds)
½ cup Butter, unsalted
3 cubes Chicken bouillon
2T dried minced onion
4 cloves minced garlic
3 mini sweet peppers or one red bell, diced
1 cup frozen corn
2T Paprika
1/2t Salt
1 cup Rice Wine Vinegar
¼ cup Ketchup
1T Brown Sugar
1t Sweet Chili Sauce (Sriracha)
1t ground black pepper
1t Worcestershire sauce

Spray a 9*13 pan with cooking spray (or grease lightly). In a saucepan, on medium heat combine all other ingredients. Heat and stir until onions expand, butter melts and powders dissolve. Remove from heat and pour evenly over pork chops. Bake uncovered for 4 hours at 250°F/121°C.

Recipe Notes:

Rice Wine Vinegar is not something everyone has. You can sub another vinegar but because of the mild flavor in the rice vinegar, use ½ vinegar and ½ water.
This could use alternative sweeteners to sweeten the dish. Ideally this would have ¼ cup brown sugar instead of 1 tablespoon.

Low Carb Foods

 LightSymbolSkylanders

Meat and Poultry

Any type or cut of meat is fine. For the best health, choose grass-fed or organic meats, avoiding antibiotic, pesticide and grain residues.

  • Chicken (whole or parts)
  • Beef steaks 
  • Bacon No Added  Sugar, Try to find the All Natural No Preservatives. 
  • Ham  No Sugar Cured, make your own Low Carb Glaze
  • Sausage (Try to stay All Natural, fresh processed Sausage can be loaded with Sugars)
  • Pork loin
  • Pork chops
  • Pork steaks
  • Pork or beef ribs
  • Beef or pork roasts
  • Ground beef
  • Ground turkey

Deli Meat

Good in a pinch and better than higher carb alternatives.

  • Cold cuts such as turkey breast and pastrami (Check for added sugars.)
  • Pepperoni sticks or slices
  • Salami and bologna
  • Prosciutto

Seafood

Any type of seafood is fine- except imitation crab meat. Make sure to check the labels if you’re buying any frozen varieties.

Omega 3 fat levels are higher in wild caught seafood.

  • Fresh or frozen, easy-to-peel shrimp
  • Fresh or frozen fish
  • Tuna in oil or water
  • Fresh or canned salmon
  • Fresh or frozen scallops
  • Crab

Dairy Products 

Do Not go for the LOW FAT, Full Fat is best.

  • Eggs
  • Heavy cream
  • Sour cream
  • Cream cheese
  • Butter
  • Cheese (Hard cheeses such as cheddar and Parmesan.)
  • Cheese (Soft cheeses such Muenster and Farmer’s.)
  • Greek Yogurt (Choose plain, full fat and aim for less than 7 net carbs per serving.)

Low Carb Vegetables

Vegetables are a main event on any low carb foods list. Low carb veggies replace sugary side dishes and add incredible variety to meals.

  • Bell peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Cucumbers
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Lettuce (Large leaves act as the “bread” for sandwiches.)
  • Leafy green vegetables such as spinach and kale
  • Onions and garlic (for flavorful cooking)
  • Sprouts for salads
  • Summer squash such as zucchini

Fruits

Fruits are an optional item on your low carb grocery list. They can be added once your weight and health are stable.

Some people can handle the sugar in fruit and still be healthy and slim, others can’t.

Not sure which fruits are low carb enough? Here are 43 low carb fruits with 1 to 10 net carbs per serving to enjoy.

  • Choose fresh, local fruit in season and stick to berries which are lower in sugar.
  • Eat fresh fruit with a fat (peanut butter, whipped cream, cheese). It slows the blood sugar spike.
  • Try avocados: A great snack with lemon juice or balsamic, or make guacamole for dipping low carb veggies.

Nuts and Seeds (I do Caution you Guys on The Nuts, they are great, but DO-NOT overdo!)

  • Nuts: Almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, walnuts, and especially macadamia nuts (Nuts last longer if you freeze them.)
  • Seeds: Sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds

Random Snacks

  • Pork rinds (Crushed, these are a good substitute for bread crumbs.)
  • Beef jerky or beef sticks

Please see more in  PANTRY

special thanks to: Low Carbe Diem for the Low Carb List.