Sunday, May 2, 2010

Low Carb Dinner Menu, May 2 - 7, 2010

Planning it seems, is the key to success. Vegetables include salad, green beans, and whatever is in the freezer. I know it's not very creative, but it's quick and easy to plan my vegys this way.

Sunday - Cajun spiced shrimp (on sale and already cooked from HEB - happiness)

Monday - Cheeseburger pie

Tuesday -Pork chops

Wednesday -Chicken wings

Thursday -Meatloaf

Friday -Pork loin

I always make enough for leftovers for lunch. Breakfast includes eggs, bacon, ham, and a Jay Robb Protein shake. I bought Oscar Mayer center cut bacon yesterday. It's perfect for cooking in the oven. It comes out just right. Luckily I've got DH trained to cook breakfast. Yes, I am a princess.

Snacks - beef jerky, Slim Jims, diet jello, strawberries, nuts (careful), and raw vegys (cauliflower, broccoli, celery)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Slippery Slope of Dieting

Stress ~ Time of Month ~ Illness ~ Plateau

All of these factors play a role in the slippery slope of dieting. During the past couple of months I've faced each of these challenges. A couple of times, I've faced all four challenges at once. This is hard on Psyche. How do you overcome the challenges and continue forth with your plan?

You might have noticed I haven't posted in the past couple of weeks. My stress level is at an all time high. TOM came for a visit and I've had an upper respiratory infection that has basically kicked my butt. I'm in survival mode. I've been on a see-saw plateau for awhile now. It's frustrating and hard. It's all I can do to hang in there and not shove carbs down my throat in order to cope.

I guess I'm human after all.

Planning has come to a stand still. I have a freezer full of meat. I pick something, defrost it, and cook it. Vegetables come in a frozen bag or can. I've been eating a lot of Slim Jims and salads. The salads come from the drive through fast food places. It's not ideal, but at least it's on plan (sort of). I'm out of sorts to the point that I'm just not focused. How do I pull myself back together?

I'm going off plan tonight. On purpose. I'll probably feel sick from it tomorrow, but I need a break. I need a dose of priority. I've got one more month to get through before I am given a short time of freedom. May is an extremely busy month for me. The stress will increase, and the time I have to cope will decrease. This is my last weekend to before my world goes topsy-turvy. I'm going to eat Mexican food.

I know, I know. Forgive me, my low carb friends. I won't go crazy, I promise.

This weekend I will plan and shop for May. I'll figure out a way to slide on the slippery slope to success. But tonight, I am going to take a break from life and dieting for an hour with my family enjoying something I haven't indulged in for months. I will forgive myself and move on. Tomorrow is a new day. This weekend is a time for renewed commitments. I need a fresh start. Stay with me.

Monday, April 12, 2010

What's In Your Freezer?

I've been rather busy this weekend, and payday comes in the middle of the week, so this week it's all about what's in the freezer. I'm learning to pick up extra meat when it's on sale. This keeps my freezer full of choices when life gets busy. I also keep around bags of steamable vegys.

This morning I pulled out pork chops for dinner. I poked around my freezer and discovered hamburger patties, steaks, a roast, pork loin, and Bratwurst sausage DH must have bought because I will never, ever eat it. I think that will cover us for a few days.

I have some vegys I need to cut up and steam before they go bad. Actually, I better check -they might already be gone. Yikes! I'm terrible when it comes to using up the fresh vegys I buy. Frozen bags work for me.

Strawberries are the lowest carb fruit, and even lower than many vegys. Recently strawberries have been on sale. I bought several packages for .99 cents each! Strawberries for dessert! Sometimes they are sweet, sometimes not. If not, I'll sprinkle a little Splenda on them and let them sit. Not too much though, Splenda does have carbs.

Tip 1: Pick up meat when it's on sale and throw it in your freezer.
Tip 2: Keep frozen steamable vegys in your freezer.
Tip 3: When you get too busy to plan -raid your freezer!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Dinner Menu Week of April 6 - 9, 2010

I found a 1 carb per 3 oz. ham at the grocery store. I didn't add any glaze to sweeten it up, so it will be a plain ham to go with my plain green beans. It's a plain Easter dinner. At least I have Easter eggs! This is going to be a tough week, so I'm keeping it simple.


Bacon, cheeseburgers without the buns and a side salad


Beef fajitas on low carb tortillias


Variation of chicken fried steak (dip the steak in Worcheshire sauce and Carbquik) & steamed vegys


Pan fried pork loins & steamed vegys


Homemade chicken wings & salad

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Gone Into Hiding -Life Is NOT a Bowl of Cherries

A cup of cherries is 21.4 carbs.

Okay, I confess, I've been in hiding. I've hit a weight loss wall. I'm frustrated, tired, cranky, and ticked off. I'm a teacher, and this is my testing time of the year which equals a woman's time of the month, except it's longer and more painful. Actually, it's just stressful.

It's hard to think about what I'm putting in my mouth when I'm worrying about 70 kids passing a state test. I'm working double time right now trying to stay positive and keep things interesting. Last week I didn't plan. I winged it.

Winging it is not a good thing. I managed, but it wasn't easy. I had wings out at least twice, Cracker Barrel's low carb menu once, a steak from Texas Roadhouse, and drive through grilled chicken salads. Winging it is also expensive.

I remind myself daily: I'm not on a diet. This is my way of eating for life. Carbs equal high blood sugar.

But I'm also on a diet. I'm halfway to my goal, and now I've hit a stall wall. I started see-sawing back and forth (3 pounds come and go) two months ago. Other dieters tell me this is a plateau. Everyone experiences it. Sometimes they last for months. I want to be at my goal weight this summer, so I'm having a hard time accepting this stall. I've tried different "tricks" to no avail.

Next week is testing week. It's long, hard, boring few days. In the past I've snacked my way through the day. I can't do that this year. I've got to plan ahead. Yesterday I bought 3 dozen eggs. It's Easter. I'm going make lots and lots of Easter eggs for the week. Easter eggs taste better, don't they?

I'm going to Sams today and raid the meat department. Part of my problem last week was that I didn't have extra meat in the freezer. It was time to stock up but I was at the end of the month if you know what I mean. I bought meat that was on sale at Krogers yesterday. Today I'm going to try cutting up vegys (zuchinni, yellow squash, bell pepper, carrots, brocolli, and cauliflower) and mixing them up in plastic bags for the week. That way I can steam them in those steamable bags. Planning is crucial for survival this week. Today is the day to plan.

If you are wondering about my weight loss challenge, I'm stalled at 179, and today is weigh in day. I've lost two pounds in 8 weeks. No wonder I'm depressed! Well, this is not the time to stop. It's the time to move forward and continue again. I'm going to start a new challenge: 13 by 31. My goal is to lose 13 pounds by Memorial Day (May 31st). It's an inverted lucky 13. Join me, leave comments (encouragement), and let's help each other make it. Are you in?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Dinner Plans for March 22 - 26, 2010

I've decided to try something a little different this week. Well, okay, the food isn't different, just the time spent cooking. Can we say casseroles and microwave? All together now...

All in one evening (okay, Sunday would have been better if I didn't get all lazy, but I did work out for the first time in a few months, so that should count for something) bake up -

Low Carb Meatloaf (I like to add chopped onion and bell pepper.)

Cheeseburger Pie (I like to add a package of real bacon pieces and a healthy dose of Greek Seasoning. I added a tsp. of seasoning salt tonight. We shall see...)

Supper Popover

Now keep some quick grilling sausage in the fridge, frozen bags of steamable vegies, and you are good to go for lunch and dinner. Good thing too because DH is working late. Perhaps I can talk him into frying me up some wings on Friday night...yum (Frank's Hot Sauce & butter). I really need to talk myself into going to the store and buying eggs. I'm out and I think it would be a good idea to boil a dozen (not to mention I need eggs for breakfast), but it's 8:00 p.m. and I have a novel to write, so perhaps I can talk DH into picking up eggs on the way home (rolling eyes).

I realize this is a simple week of meals - nothing new (the Supper Popover is new), but I need an easy week of cooking, so it's good to make plans and cook ahead at times. And when all else fails - go out! Okay, maybe not.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Supper Popover

I'm beginning to learn that it's possible to enjoy favorite foods when you alter the ingredients to make a low carb version. I have a wonderful Supper Popover recipe I've avoided for years due to the flour. Now that I've discovered Carbquik, I was able to recreate one my favorite dishes.

Heat the oven to 425 degrees.

Brown, drain 1 lb. of ground beef

Stir into the ground beef:

1 15 oz. can of tomato sauce
1/4 cup chopped bell pepper
2 tbsp. Carbquik
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. parsley flakes

Heat to boiling for 1 minute & stir. Pour into an ungreased rectangular pan or casserole dish (about 9 x 9).

Spread 2 cups of cheese over the ground beef mixture.


2 eggs (beat)
1 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp. oil
1 cup Carbquik (sifted)
1/2 tsp. salt

Pour the mixture evenly over the cheese. Sprinkle diced onions on top of the cheese. Bake for 30 minutes. 6 carbs per serving.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I'm In Love - Low Carb Chocolate Heaven

I just died and went to chocolate heaven.

Okay...seriously. I just found Chocoperfection. I was in my local health food store the other day when I ran across a chocolate bar that claimed to be low carb. I laughed and thought, "Yeah, right. Like those Russell Stover's so called sugar free chocolates." I turned the bar over to look at the nutrition facts (always look on the back for the nutrition facts of a product).

Total Carbohydrate: 16 grams
Dietary Fiber: 14 grams

2 net grams of carbs for the entire bar! Are you kidding me? Zero sugars. I thought, "I bet this tastes like dirt."

I forked over nearly $4 anyway.

OMG! I've tried Ghirardelli dark chocolates coming it at about 4 carbs per square. They work. I've tried Godiva dark chocolates coming in at about 3 carbs for a small bite. It's good. But who needs the leaders in chocolate when there is Chocoperfection?

The smooth, sinful European dark chocolate is naturally sugar free, gluten-free, and made with 60% cocoa. And it tastes a little milky, you know, like milk chocolate instead of just bitter dark chocolate. I can break off a piece and let it melt into my happy mouth. I'm satisfied. I can literally live off of a piece a day, but if I want, I can indulge in the entire bar.

In case you were wondering: dry cocoa solids, 60% Oligofrutose (a prebiotic fiber?), cocoa butter, soy lecithin(no tummy aches, so I'm ignoring this ingredient), and natural flavors (chocolate?). I honestly don't know what all of these things are, and quite frankly, I don't want to know. I've found chocolate heaven! And I'm staying there.

This is exactly what I was looking for and it's worth the price (although I wouldn't mind if the price were lower). There are times when I need chocolate. Really I do. It's a girl thing. Kind of like shoes. Speaking of needing chocolate. I finished off the last bar. Gotta go...

Wing Stop - The CARBS Are In!

First let me say this is a sad, sad post. I love Wing Stop wings. I can eat 20 without taking a breath, but I was concerned that I was gulping down too many carbs. I checked their website for the nutritional info. Nada. I asked in two different store locations. Nothing. No info.

Today I received an email back from their corporate office. For every two wings, you get 1 carb. 20 wings = 10 carbs. Yikes! That's half my daily allowance. Now let me tell you. I will still eat their wings. Especially on DD's dance night when I am stuck across town for three hours in the evening. I will plan for a zero carb breakfast and VLC lunch. I can indulge in my wings guilt free if I plan right.

My rolling eyes occur due to the times I assumed (and we know what assume means) that my wings were 0 carbs. Not all wings are made equal, or carb free. Lesson learned.

Low Carb Restaurant Review - Logan's Roadhouse

Yesterday I went to Logan's Roadhouse for the first time. I wanted to go somewhere different (and did despite the balking of my two kids). We entered the nearly empty restaurant between lunch and dinner (what I call "dunchtime"). And waited. And waited. And waited. I was about ready to give up when a chippery girl finally approached us and showed us to a table right away.

The menu was as I expected. The usual steak, chicken, burgers, shrimp. No problem. They had "healthy" selections. I selected a 6 ounce sirloin, broccoli, and a side salad (I asked for full fat dressing). DH had grilled tilapia, broccoli, and a side salad.

The salad was simple: lettuce, a little diced tomato, and a few strips of carrots. It was just the right size and fresh.

The steak was okay, not Texas Roadhouse, but as good as it gets at home. The portion of broccoli was small. I was still hungry when I finished. Next time I will add seasoned vegys or something. DH said his tilapia was well seasoned, but like me, he was still hungry when he finished his meal. It was a low calorie meal that didn't last long. The price was a little higher than Texas Roadhouse for less food. Not sure how I feel about that.

I give Logan's Roadhouse 3 stars out of 5 for the food, and 4 stars out of 5 for low carb choices.

Carbquik Baking Mix - Oh Yes!

Biscuits, pancakes, muffins, brownies, cookies...oh my! And LOW CARB! Carbquik to the low carbers rescue. I finally broke down and ordered a box. Okay, it's not Bisquick, but it's darn close. Seriously. 2 net carbs for biscuit. 4 net carbs for a pancake. I can live with this a couple of times a week and keep my daily intake of carbs under 20. There are lots of flexible options available with this miracle baking mix, and I plan to do a great deal of experimenting. I can't wait to alter my supper popover recipe.

The first day we made biscuits. Actually, DH made the biscuits while I scrambled up some eggs. The biscuits looked like the English version - flat as a cookie, but they tasted good with butter and sugar free jelly spread on top. Yum! DH is making a batch right now. I can hardly wait for breakfast.

Yesterday we made pancakes. They tasted like...pancakes! Both recipes required more water than the recipe called for, so use your judgement. The only major difference I noticed was that the pancakes were thin. I used Smuckers SF syrup (careful, careful on the amount). They were so good.

I decided to experiment last night and make brownies. The brownies turned out good, but not quite chocolaty enough. I used the Carbquik brownie recipe and a Ghirardelli dark chocolate baking bar. I altered the ingredients a bit. 1 1/2 cups of Carbquik instead of 2. Two tbsp. of vanilla DaVincis instead of 2 tsp. vanilla. One tbsp. of real mayo (for moisture -read that they were a bit dry). I'm going to order the chocolate DaVincis syrup and try it in the brownie mix for a more chocolaty taste.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Monday's Menu, Restaurant Review of Salad Express

I'm going to combine two thoughts in this post. I'll share my "menu" and a quick review of Salad Express. Here goes -

After four cups of coffee this morning...

I baked bacon in the oven (see my previous post for directions). I microwaved a portion of the leftover egg/sausage casserole from yesterday for breakfast.

At lunch time I was out and about shoe shopping. DD and I were quite hungry. I remembered a salad place close by, so we decided to go there. Salad Express. This little trip got me to thinking. I should share the low carb finds and review the restaurants I visit on my blog. So here goes...

Salad Express is a salad, soup, & dessert bar. I was able to get a variety of vegetable and protein toppings for my salad. I chose the French low cal dressing. I'm not concerned with calories, but I've found that low fat dressings have more carbs, and low cal anything tends to have less carbs (interesting observation, don't you think). I drizzled on approximately two tablespoons of dressing (since I didn't know the carb amounts I wanted to be careful). It's great little salad bar. All you can eat for $6.95 (my location at least). Not bad. I avoided the soups and desserts, but I confess, I indulged in two bites each: watermelon and cantelope. Seriously...just two bites...

For dinner I had Alaska wild salmon in seasoned Cajun butter (HEB's store brand), grilled shrimp, and homemade low carb coleslaw. DH made salmon and shrimp and I made the coleslaw. I know you are impressed with how we work together, but I must admit, I spent most of the time on the couch watching the 20/20 special about The Bachelor.

I've increased my water, stayed on plan, and swallowed my vitamins. get to the next big goal of the week...going back to the gym. I did buy a really cute bag to carry to the gym. Does that count? Okay, okay...I will try to talk myself into it tomorrow.

How to Cook Bacon in the Oven

I love bacon, but I hate frying it in the pan. The popping grease freaks me out. When I was a kid I spent the night at a friend's house. Her mom let her make the bacon for breakfast. Somehow she tipped the pan and splattered grease all over her tummy. That required a trip to the emergency room. I'm still not over the trauma. Now that I've confessed...DH makes the bacon, but he doesn't like to do it because of the mess.

The other day we tried making bacon on the George Foreman. It worked out well. The bacon came out great (although I had to cut the strips in half). No splattering grease, but it was a messy clean up (even with the drip grease catcher).

How do restaurants make bacon? Their bacon always turns out so perfect. It turns out that they bake it. You don't have the grease popping mess and it's an easy clean up job. This is by far the superior way to make bacon.

Directions for Baking Bacon:

(1) Set the oven at 425 degrees.

(2) Line a cookie sheet with a lip with foil (including the lip). I like Reynold's non stick foil.

(3) Lay your strips of bacon across the pan side by side. I was able to fit about 10 pieces on my cookie sheet.

(4) Bake 10 - 20 minutes (the longer, the crispier). Check every five minutes the first time in order to get your bacon to the level of "crispy" you desire.

(5) When you remove the cookie sheet from the oven, use tongs to place your bacon on a plate topped with paper towels. Roll up the foil and throw it away! The world's easiest bacon clean up.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sunday's Low Carb Menu (3/14/10)

This morning I got up and made an egg and sausage casserole. It turned out just right.

Egg and Sausage Casserole

Spray a 9 x 9 inch baking pan with pan. In a fry pan, fry a 6 inch tube of Jimmy Dean sausage (JD doesn't put out as much grease as some of the other brands) with some chopped bell pepper, onions, and a few dashes of onion powder. In a bowl mix 6 eggs, 1/2 cup of cheese, salt, pepper, and a couple of tablespoons of whipping cream. Mix the egg mixture with the sausage mixture and pour into the baking pan. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. This recipe does well the next day in the microwave. I also ate a leftover Carbquik biscuit.

Lunch time rolled around and I had some shopping to do, so I ended up eating 20 mild wings from Wing Stop (so yum). If I find out they are not carb free I am going to cry. They don't have their nutritional info. online. I sent an email today to ask. I will post it when I find out.

I made low carb meatloaf, Southern green beans, and cauliflower mashed (mock) potatoes for dinner. The meatloaf was wonderful as usual. DH complained about the butter I put in the green beans (I do like the butter). I totally screwed up the cauliflower mashed potatoes and had to throw them out. Oh well! You live, you learn. Overall, it was a very low carb day.

Losing Weight is a Journey, Not a Ride

My short term goal is to lose eleven pounds by Easter. This is my journey since I began:

2/14: 181
2/21: 178
2/28: 177.5
3/7: 180.5
3/14: 177.5
4/4: Goal: 170

As you can see I had a tough two weeks. Stress and lack of planning can get you every time. Planning can overcome stress, but it's not always easy. Sometimes my best laid plans are interrupted by life. The meal planned for Tuesday doesn't happen because my family's schedule goes awry.

I've come to the conclusion that I'm going to have to go beyond planning. I must prepare. I'm fighting the battle of my life, and the only way I can win is to strategize and be prepared. This week is spring break. The time off gives me a chance to refresh, recharge, plan, and prepare. I'm also going to try out new recipes this week.

Goals for this week: (1) Get back into the habit of drinking water. Cut down on the diet sodas (one a day is more than enough). (2) Get back to the gym and work out. (3) Get back into the habit of taking my vitamins consistently (I always take my fish oil and chelate minerals, but I've been bad about taking my multivitamin). (4) Try out new recipes. (5) Plan and prepare for the week after spring break.

Be Prepared: My son is a Boy Scout, and the scout motto is to be prepared. I'm going to act like a good scout mom and prepare meals ahead of time. Next Sunday I will boil a dozen eggs, fry up a batch of bacon (to microwave throughout the week), prepare snack packs (beef jerky, eggs, hard cheddar cheese, small low carb pickles, olives, celery, cucumber slices, nuts in measured amounts, and strawberries), bake 2-3 dinner casseroles, and a breakfast casserole.

Eating low carb requires cooking, but sometimes, I just don't have time. Sometimes everyone in my family has to eat at different times. This requires planning and preparing foods that can be thrown in the microwave. This also ensures me that I have something to carry to lunch each day.

There are times when I'm away from home and must eat on the run or out. I look for places where I can get 0 carb chicken wings, grilled chicken, salad (watch the ingredients and dressing for sneaky carbs), grilled fish, grilled shrimp, steak, or a bunless bacon cheeseburger.

This week I am going to post as I go about the business of getting my head back into the game, and my body readjusted to a new level of intensity. I will add menus and recipes throughout the weeks. I have a couple of awesome finds to share as well. So check back throughout the week to pick up new product ideas, recipes, and more.

Join me in my challenge and post your results in the comments section each Sunday. I'm going to begin posting challenges and results each week on my blog.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

What Can You Do With A Low Carb Tortilla?

Mission Carb Balance Wheat Tortillas are my new bread. They are 4 carbs each. I count them in my daily (below 20) carb count. I buy mine at Kroger. Tortillas give me new recipe options and make up for sliced bread. Be warned - tortillas in general are high in carbs. In particular, stay away from tortillas at restaurants.

Top Ten Ideas for Low Carbing with Tortillas

1. PB & J. That's right. You can have a low carb version of peanut butter & jelly. I occassionally have one for lunch or as a desperation snack. I use 2 tbsp. of Parker's All-Natural Honey Creme Peanut Butter (I found it in the refrigerated section at HEB) and 1 tbsp. Polaner Sugar Free Jelly. Total: 8 carbs.

2. Make a breakfast burrito with scrambled egg, bacon (or sausage), some diced onion and bell pepper, and a little bit of cheddar cheese.

3. Cinnamon toast. Dab several spots of real butter all over the tortilla. Sprinkle with cinnamon and Splenda. Place in toaster and put on light setting (not a pop up toaster).

4. Soft taco. Mmm...A little ground beef mixed with a Picante sauce and cheese rolled up in your tortilla is totally yummy.

5. Fajitas, of course. I fill mine with a lot of meat. Two is usually enough to keep me happy. You can use beef, chicken, or shrimp, or combine them together. Throw on a little pico de gallo and cheese and you've just gone Tex-Mex.

6. Quesadillas. A little cheese and chicken and tomatoes...optional green onions, black olives, mushrooms, or whatever low carb ingredients that makes you happy. Fry your quesedilla in a flat skillet with a little oil or butter. Add your cheese and ingredients in a thin layer. When your cheese is melted, fold your totilla and flip it till browned on both sides.

7. Pinwheel roll-ups. Cut your tortillas in wide strips. Combine 1 pkg. of cream cheese, 1 cup of sour cream, and 1-1/2 tbsp. of dry onion soup mix. Spread a thin layer of the mixture onto your tortilla strips. Layer on lettuce, thin sliced ham, and Swiss cheese. Great for parties!

8. Pigs in a Blanket - the low carb version! Cut your tortillas in 2 x 4 inch strips. Layer on a sliced cheese (cut to match) and a precooked (preheated as well) little smokie sausage. Roll the tortilla around the sausage. Microwave for 30 seconds (microwaves vary).

9. Tostado. Toast your tortilla (not in a pop up toaster). Top with ground beef, diced tomato, shredded lettuce, and cheese.

10. Strawberries & Creme. Dice up some strawberries and sprinkle with a tsp. of Splenda. Let them sit for a few minutes until the absorb the splenda. Put strawberries in the middle of the tortilla. Drizzle on Walden Farms Calorie Free Chocolate Dip (also 0 carb). Roll up the tortilla. Top with Redi-Whip and more strawberries.

*Note about toasting tortillas: The tortilla will often puff up. Stick a fork in it to make it go back down.

Dinner Menu for February 28 to March 5th, 2010

I'm starting to feel a bit repetitive, but I must say, I've found a few favorites. Spring Break is coming up soon. I'll have to try some new recipes. In particular, I'd like to find simple vegy recipes and try out some low carb treats. If you have some ideas, please leave comments and links for everyone.


Did you miss the BEST Ever Pork Chop post? It's right before this one. They turned out great. I just finished my chop (and half of DH's second). Yum! Tonight I'm going to make Pumpkin Soup and Holmes Original Pecan Sausage.


I confess. I'm watching the FRC of The Bachelor tomorrow night. By the time I get home from taking DD to dance, I don't have a lot of time to cook. In the morning I will put a Beef Stew together (beef stew meat, 2 pgks. McCormicks beef stew seasoning w/water, cut onion and celery) in the crockpot.


I'm going to make cheeseburger pie (okay, I love it already - makes great leftovers for lunch). I'm contemplating adding broccoli to the pie.


Can you say chicken wings? I'm driving thru, picking up, order out... KFC's spicy grilled chicken wings are 0 carbs. Add your own vegy sides to keep things low carb.


What can I say? I'm a traditional American girl. Meatloaf. Uh-huh. Again. I LOVE the low carb meatloaf. I use Heinz Reduced Sugar Ketchup. I wish they would make bigger bottles! I plan to try cauliflower mashed potatoes (as traditional as a low carb WOE will let me) if I can find a bag of frozen cauliflower. I couldn't find it at Kroger's today (sad face).


Italian Chicken, Garlic Shrimp (from Schwan's), and a bag of steamed vegys. I always buy my chicken breasts from Schwans. They turn out right every time.

OMG! Best Ever Pork Chops!

DH just made the best pork chops ever. OMG, they were so good. They came out juicy and delicious. The recipe is very simple.

Best Ever Pork Chops


1/2 inch thick center cut chops
garlic powder
onion powder
Tony Chachere's Original Creole Seasoning

Sprinkle seasonings onto chops. Seer the chops on both sides in a flat skillet, about 3 to 4 minutes (or until browned).

Bake the chops on 350 for 15 minutes.

We served the chops with broccoli slaw and Hidden Valley Rancy Coleslaw dressing.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Dinner Menu Week of February 21 - 26, 2010

Sorry I didn't post last week's menu. Things got a little harried with both home and work. I did manage to stay on plan and lose 3 pounds. I'm in a new weight loss decade (one I haven't seen in 10 years), and I'm 4 sizes smaller. How cool is that? Low carb rocks!

This week I'm going to simply share the main course. All of my vegys are steamed. Meat sales were great, so I picked up quite a bit to put in the big freezer.


The boys should be home from camping anytime now. The pot roast is in the crock pot. It's smells good!


Garlic butter chicken dipped in French Fried Onions. Melt a stick of butter. Add 2 tsps. of garlic powder. Crush up some French Fried Onions (French's is the best. The off brand tasted like dirt.). Dip the chicken in the butter mixture and the FFO's. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.


Texas Style Ground Beef (ground beef, diced onion & bell pepper, Greek Seasoning, 1 tbsp. Worchestshire sauce, 1 can Rotel, optional - Dreamfields Pasta)


Beef Stew in a Crock Pot. Add 2 pkgs. of McCormicks Beef Stew seasoning (w/the water recommended), large pieces of onion and celery. If you can handle the carbs, you could add a little bit of carrot and potato, but measure carefully.


Pumpkin Soup & Holmes Original Pecan Sausage (my favorite).


Salmon in a Crock Pot. I never made this last time. I couldn't find any wild Alaskan Salmon. I'm going to try again this week. My alternative plan is pork chops.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Meat Lover's Pizza Casserole

I had a brainstorm. I made cheeseburger pie last week, and I wondered...what if I manipulated the ingredients and made a pizza pie instead? So the experiment began. The best part of the experiment is that it turned out great! DH said he liked it better than the cheeseburger pie.

1/2 ground Italian sausage
1/2 pound ground beef
50 pepperonis (approximate) cut in half (this took all of one minute)
1 package of "real" bacon bits
1/2 cup of whipping cream
1/2 cup of low carb spaghetti sauce
1/4 cup bell pepper
1/4 cup onion
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp basil
5 eggs
6 oz. "Pizza" cheese (pre bought package - Kraft)

Fry the sausage and beef together with the bell pepper and onion. Drain the grease. Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Pour into a greased (Pam) baking dish. Top with extra pepporoni and cheese. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Dinner Menu for February 7 - 12, 2010

I have the roast from Friday in the crockpot. I suppose it was too big because it took all day and all night to cook. Lesson learned: choose a smaller cut of meat.


Mmmm...Chicken Wings. Combine a tablespoon of Frank's Hot Sauce and a cup of butter. Dip the chicken wings into the butter, then drop into the fryer. I'll most likely steam a bag of vegetables or have a salad to go along with my meal.


Turkey Breast. I found the whole turkey breast in the freezer section of the grocery store. Pop it in the crockpot with butter and whatever spices you want. Steam some vegys or cook some green beans as a side.


Cheeseburger Pie. This recipe has become a favorite.


Bunless Bacon Cheeseburger.'s an easy stand by and Wednesday is a busy day at my house.


Low Carb Meatloaf. I just love this meatloaf. It is so good. I'm expecting to be too tired to make mashed (mock) cauliflower baked potatoes, but if you are not, they would go perfect with the meatloaf. I'll probably have green beans.


Pork Tenderloin. I haven't decided how I'll spice. I might buy one that is already seasoned. Steamed vegys for the side.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Dinner Menu for January 31 to February 5, 2010

I learned a little lesson last week. I made my dinner menu, but didn't get around to shopping. I sent hubby out for half of the list. My week did not go as planned. We ended up having sausage one night and chicken breaded with french fried onions (very good by the way).


We are going to bake some catfish. Crush up a bag of pork rinds. Add 1 -1/2 cups of almond flour & 3 tsp. of Old Bay Seasoning. Mix it together. Dip the catfish in egg whites and then into the crumb mixture. Bake @ 500 for 12-15 minutes or until catfish flakes easily. Serve with low carb cole slaw and cut green beans. (Cole slaw - I use a bag of cole slaw mix with Hidden Valley Cole Slaw Dressing. The dressing is 2.5 grams of carbs per tbsp., so use sparingly. I like adding a little bit of diced apple and walnuts.)


Italian Chicken Legs. This is one of the recipes I intended to cook last week, but never picked up the drumsticks. I have them now, so this is on the menu for Monday. I'll serve it with a bag of mixed steamed vegys.


I was looking through my "back in the day" recipes to see if there were any favorites that I could modify to low carb when I ran across my Pumpkin Soup recipe. Simmer for 20 minutes: 3 cups of chicken broth, 1/2 tsp salt, 2 cups of 100% pure pumpkin, 1/2 tsp fresh parsley, 1/4 cup chopped onion, 1/4 tsp fresh thyme, 1/2 clove garlic (minced), and 1/2 tsp of black pepper. Puree 1 cup at a time in a blender or food processor. Return to the pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, uncovered. Stir in 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream. Garnish with fresh parsley. I'm thinking about making some sausage to go along with this soup.


BBQ Pot Roast. Place your roast into the crock pot. Combine 1 cup of low carb ketchup (I use Heinz reduced sugar), 1/2 cup chopped onion, 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce, 2 tbsp. brown Splenda or Sugar Twin, 1/2 cup of water. Pour the mix over the roast. Cook on low for 10-12 hours. Serve with mixed steamed vegys.


Garlic Butter Chicken. Melt 1/2 cup of butter in the microwave. Mix in 1 tbsp of garlic salt & 1/4 tsp. of pepper. Dip chicken breasts into the mixture and lay in a pan sprayed with Pam. Bake @ 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Serve with the vegys of your choice.


Texas Style Ground Beef. Brown a pound of ground beef with diced onion and bell pepper. Add 2 cans of Rotel Tomatoes & Chilis. Season with 1 tbsp. of Worcestershire sauce, 1 tbsp. Greek Seasoning, salt & pepper. If you can handle "extra" carbs, add Dreamfields penne pasta.

Snoot Stew

During my grocery shopping trip last week I found a this can of Glory Foods Sensibly Seasoned Tomatoes & Okra. Today I had an idea for lunch. We browned a pound of ground beef, added the Tomatoes & Okra fro Glory Foods and let it simmer. We seasonsed it with salt, pepper, and Tony Chachere's Original Creaole Seasoning (to taste). Dear hubby added a little tabasco sauce to his and named it "Snoot Stew" (it's a little family joke). This quick meal was delish! It is 9 carbs per serving (we each ate half), so if you are eating less than 20 carbs a day, you will need to eat a VLC breakfast and dinner.

When the Label Says "Sugar Free"

I have a confession to make.

I LOVE chocolate.

I've been on a quest to find a chocolate treat in which I can indulge. It's easier said than done. I've checked the back of dozens of labels. Most of the chocolate treats on the store shelves have as much or more carbs than I eat in a day.

As a diabetic, I can't afford to make mistakes with my carbs. I don't want my blood sugar to creep up or jump up. It's all about control. As someone trying to lose weight, the last thing I want to do is blow it with a carby indulgence.

As a consumer, it really ticks me off that I can pick up a bag of "sugar free" chocolate candy only to discover that it's not really sugar free. At my local grocery store there is a display of sugar free candy. On the front of every bag as big as can be is the label "sugar free". It looks like a low carbers dream...

Until you turn over the package and read the back label. One piece is often 20 carbs. How can that be? Sugar alcohols. They subtract the sugar alcohols the same way we subtract fiber to get net carbs. If you are a low carber or diabetic, despite what some folks say (the people selling the candy), sugar alcohols will mess with your weight loss efforts and blood sugar. I know. I've tried it. Not only did it cause a stall in my weight loss, but it sent my blood sugars through the roof.

I can't help but think of all of the diabetics out there who take the "sugar free" label at face value. Personally, I think this deceitful labeling practice should be illegal. Granted, people should read the nutritional labels, but not everyone does. In fact, not everyone even knows that it's the carbs they should count. How can they when the ADA recommends 60 or more carbs PER MEAL to diabetics? If I ate like that I would be dead, or at the very least in a diabetic coma close to dead.

Don't trust the marketing labels on the front of packages. Read the nutritional labels. You can subtract fiber from carbs to get a net carb number, but do not subtract sugar alcohols. Believe it or not, even Atkins products subtracts the sugar alcohols. It's all about marketing and making the almighty dollar. Don't put your health or your life in the hands of marketing professionals whose job is to convince you that their product is healthy, when in fact, it is not.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Dinner Menu for January 24 - January 29, 2010

This week I'm going to try a few new ideas, and some old favorites. Are you ready for dinner?


Salmon in a Crock Pot. I always buy wild Alaska salmon, and ask the seafood department to remove the skin. Place 1-1/2 lb. salmon fillet(s) in a crock pot. Add 1/4 cup dry white wine, 2 tbsp. melted butter, 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice, & 1 tsp light soy sauce. Cook on low for 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Keep an eye on it after the first hour so you don't overcook it. Serve with a salad & steamed vegys.


Roast Beef in a Crock Pot. Place your roast in the crock pot on top of foil balls. Mix together 1 envelope of each and pour over the roast: Good Seasons Italian dressing mix, Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix, & McCormicks brown gravy mix. Cook on low 8-10 hours (no water needed). Serve with steamed mixed vegetables.


Tex-Mex Chicken. Place chicken breasts in a baking dish sprayed with Pam. Season with Greek Seasoning. Top with a mix of diced bell pepper & diced onion. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Take it out of the oven and top with cheese (I buy the package of Mexican cheeses from Kraft). Place the chicken back in the oven for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Back in the day I served this with Ranch Style Beans and Rice-a-Roni, but not anymore. If you can handle beans, you might serve it with Pinto beans. I will have a salad.


Bunless Bacon Cheeseburgers. Seriously I won't be be home. This is the menu for the boys. It's dance class night, so I will grab something low carb at an area restaurant, and pick up DD something on the way home.


Low Carb Meatloaf. This meatloaf was a hit. It turned out so good, I'm going to have it again! I think I might try a version of cauliflower mashed potatoes (mock, of course). This time I will buy a bag of frozen cauliflower, allow it to defrost, cook it in the microwave, and mash it up before adding salt, pepper, butter, heavy cream, sour cream, cheese, & bacon bits. I'm going to go light on the cheese.


Italian Chicken Legs. I'm really making use of the crock pot this week. Place 8 chicken legs in a crock pot. Add 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1 tbsp. brown Sugar Twin or Splenda, 1 - 8 oz. can of tomato sauce, & 1/2 cup of diced onion. Cook on low 7-8 hours. I'll serve this with Southern Green Beans and steamed yellow squash.

I'm searching for simple vegetable recipes. Please leave a recipe in the comments section. I desperately need some vegetable variety!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Low Carb Recipe - Southern Green Beans

I eat a lot of green beans, considering how low they are in carbs. I was desparate to kick them up a notch, so I came up with a Southern twist that's quick, easy and yummy!

2 cans of cut green beans

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2 bag of real bacon bits

2 - 3 tbsp. almond slices

Combine the ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes.

Low Carb Recipe - Blueberry Muffins

I'm rather tickled. I played around in the kitchen and came up with this recipe for blueberry muffins. They turned out great, and they are only 2 carbs each!


4 eggs
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 tbsp. granulated Splenda
2 tbsp. whipping cream
1/3 cup almond flour
1/4 cup fresh blueberries

Whisk the eggs, butter, and whipping cream. Sift in the almond flour and Splenda. Fold in the blueberries. Spray a six cup muffin pan with Pam. Pour the batter into the cups. (I found it simpler to pour the batter into a large measuring cup and then pour it into the muffin pan cups. The spout helped to pour the mix neatly.) Bake at 400 degrees for about 25 minutes. Start watching the muffins at 15 minutes and adjust as needed. Bake the muffins until the are browned, but not burned.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Dinner Menu for Sunday, January 17 to Friday, January 22

What's for dinner? Beef, chicken, pork, and fish!


Steak night! Fire up the grill. Add green beans with slivered almonds for your side dish. If you haven't tried the cauliflower twice baked mocked potatoes you are missing out. It sounds weird, but tastes great. I will caution you - it takes about an hour to grate the cauliflower, but it is so worth it.


Pan fry salmon with HEB's Cajun butter. Yum! Excellent with steamed broccoli.


Put a rump roast in the crockpot with chunks of onion, carrot (a serving is 5 carbs), and celery. Season with two packages of McCormick's Beef Stew Seasoning and about 2 cups of water. Set to low. and cook for about 10 hours.


It's bacon cheeseburger night (without the bun). Serve with slices of cucumbers and tomatoes, or a salad.


Chicken and Vegetables. This is my own recipe. I actually made it up from scratch. It's hubby's favorite.

Ingredients: chicken breasts, Greek seasoning, diced tomato, slices of zucchini, slices of yellow squash, cheese

Instructions: Set your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking dish with Pam. Place chicken breasts in the pan (however many you want). Sprinkle with Greek seasoning. Top with plenty of diced tomatoes, zucchini, and squash. Liberally sprinkle on Greek seasoning between layers of vegetables. Bake for 30 minutes. Top with cheese and place back in oven for another five minutes.


I'm going to try a new recipe this week if I can find Hansen's Diet Black Cherry Soda. The recipe is for Cherry Glazed Pork Chops. I'll throw a bag of steamable vegys in the microwave (it is Friday night).

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Dinner Menu for January 10 to January 15, 2010

I'm keeping this week's dinner menu as simple as possible with a couple of repeats from last week. The cheeseburger pie was a hit. It's easy and quick to make. I'm going to double the recipe and cook it in a larger baking pan. We take our dinner leftovers to lunch the next day.

Low Carb Meatloaf, cheddar biscuits, green beans

Baked tilapia, green beans w/slivered almonds

Cheeseburger pie (doubling the recipe)

Roast in crockpot (I use two packages of McCormick's seasoning. Add large chunks of onions, carrots, & celery.)

Italian chicken, steamed broccoli

Southwestern Chili Con Carne, cheddar biscuits

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Protein Drink Recipes

My favorite protein powder is Jay Robb's Whey Protein Vanilla Flavor Powder. It's one of the best engineered protein powders with healthy whey isolates, no after taste, and a yummy flavor. And it's only 1 carb! I make protein drinks for breakfast when I in a hurry, and for in between meals when I get hungry. I've been experimenting lately. Here are some of my favorite protein drink recipes:

Cherry Blast

1 scoop of Jay Robb's Whey Protein Vanilla Flavor Powder
8 oz. Big K Diet Drop Red Cherry Blast Soda
4 tbsp. of whipping cream
2-3 ice cubes

Root Beer Float

1 scoop of Jay Robb's Whey Protein Vanilla Flavor Powder
8 oz. Diet Root Beer
4 tbsp. of whipping cream
2-3 ice cubes

Orange Creamsicle

1 scoop of Jay Robb's Whey Protein Vanilla Flavor Powder
8 oz. Diet Sunkist Orange Soda
4 tbsp. of whipping cream
2-3 ice cubes

Big Red Float

1 scoop of Jay Robb's Whey Protein Vanilla Flavor Powder
8 oz. Diet Big Red
4 tbsp. of whipping cream
2-3 ice cubes

Add your low carb protein shake in the comments section. I'm trying to find a diet strawberry and diet grape soda. If you know of another great diet soda for our low carb protein shakes, please let readers know by leaving a comment.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Low Carb Winner!

I've tried several diets over the past 16 years. Nutrisystem, Weight Watchers, Quick Weight Loss Centers, Low Fat / High Carb, Low Calorie, and the list goes on...

Several years ago I tried Atkins. I didn't read the book. I didn't understand the diet, but I ate a lot of bacon! I think I lost 10 lbs or so before burning out and moving on to the next craze. Every diet I've ever tried plateaued out at 10 - 20 lbs. I could never, ever lose more than 20 lbs. - until now.

What happened?

I went low carb. Seriously. Less than 20 carbs a day.

Why did I do it?

My blood sugar went bonkers. I was in a bookstore one day when I looked around and realized that the world was fuzzy. As a prediabetic, I had a blood sugar monitor at home. I check it - 464. Wow! Talk about a wake up call. I went to the doctor. My A1C was 12.4. Yikes!

So I went low carb.

I started to lose weight. My blood sugar began to fall. I could see again.

But there is more...

When I went to the doctor he also checked my cholesterol.

Choloesterol: 250 (should be less than 200)
Triglycerides: 486 (should be less than 100)
HDL: 47 (should be higher, definitely higher)
LDL: They couldn't calculate it due to my high triglycerides.

Between my blood sugar and my cholesterol - my doctor was not a happy camper.

Two months later:

A1C: 6.8

Cholesterol: 120
Triglycerides: 100
HDL: 57
LDL: 43

Weight loss?


I'm a low carb winner!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Lose 14 pounds by February 14th - Valentine's Day

Join Low Carb Friends 14 by 2/14 weight loss challenge. This averages out to about 2 pounds a week for healthy, reasonable goal. We post our weight each Friday, and work to motivate and encourage each other.

A few tips for the challenge:

1. Log in daily and post. This helps to keep you on track and motivated.

2. Try a VLC (very low carb) plan. I'm eating 20 below carbs a day (healthy carbs from vegetables), plenty of protein and fat, and drinking water.

3. Get up and move. Take a walk, hit the gym, dance around your living room. Move, move, move.

4. Try to avoid snacking. If you eat enough protein and fat, you shouldn't feel hungry. If you do feel hungry, make a few eggs (hard boiled, scrambled, deviled). Eggs are great for cutting hunger.

5. Plan your meals ahead, especially for days when you are in a hurry and on the go. Thinking ahead will help you to avoid falling off the wagon.

6. Post a positive saying and your goal on your bathroom mirror.

7. Throw your stinkin' thinkin' in the garbage can. Negative garbage in = negative garbage out. Keep your thoughts, words, and company positive.

8. Tell yourself that sugar is crack. It's bad for you. It makes you sick and fat.

9. Instead of indulging in a chocolate bar when you feel stressed, indulge in a chair massage.

10. Remember you are on a lifelong journey, not a diet. This is a way of life. The benefits outweigh the struggles. Hang in there!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Dinner Menu for January 2 - 8, 2010


Steak, Cauliflower Twice Baked Potato, Green Beans


Apple Marinated Chicken, Broccoli and Cheese


Hamburger Patties w/Cheese, Tomato / Cucumber Salad (cherry tomatoes cut in half, diced cucumber, diced celery, 1 tbsp. olive oil mixed with Italian Seasoning)


Cheeseburger Pie, Steamed Vegetables


Chuck Roast (crockpot on low with 1 can of Rotel tomatoes), Steamed Vegetables


Meatloaf, Green Beans, Mashed Cauliflower Potatoes


Chili Carne Con, Cheddar Biscuit

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year, New Day, New Start!

Today is January 1st, 2010. Today I resolve to begin again, to put the past behind me, to learn from my mistakes, to go forward with my goal to live a healthy life. Join me on my low carb lifetime journey.

Today I'm starting Atkins induction. I will continue through January 15th. On induction you can eat beef, eggs, chicken, turkey, pork, fish, and low gylcemic vegetables. In other words - meat and vegetables. You can also have butter, cream, and spices. As I sit here drinking my morning coffee (yes, you can have coffee), I am dreaming of the bacon and eggs my dear hubby is going to make for me (yes, I'm spoiled). After breakfast, I am going to plan my menu for the week, make a grocery list, and go to the grocery store.

I fell off the water wagon a few weeks ago and bumped my head on a bottle of diet soda. My weight loss has slowed down ever since, so today I'm giving up soda and starting back on water. Water is nature's diet drink.

It's all about beginning again. The New Year is a great excuse to start over, reevaluate life goals, and live a healthy life. What are your New Year's resolutions for getting healthy?