Lunch During the Week Vs. Lunch On My Day Off

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I had the day off today so I got the southwestern salad from California Tortilla for lunch today after spending way too much at DSW. I forgot to ask for no corn or tortilla strips, but I’ve been really good lately so I just said fuck it and ate the small amount of corn and tiny tortilla strips mixed into the salad. I swapped the grilled chicken for taco meat because I’ve been hankering for a good taco salad for days now. I don’t go here often because it’s sort of out of the way for me, but it’s good when I need a change.

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I made turkey burgers for during the week. I eat a turkey burger with A-1 sauce and green beans with butter every day for lunch at work. It’s easy to throw into a Tupperware to bring to work, easy to reheat, and is filling. Since I’ve been eating this for lunch, I’ve been losing weight better. I really like the Mighty Spark burgers, which taste great and also give back to charity. Feel good food!

So far, I haven’t gotten sick of my turkey burger and green bean lunches. I figure I can swap out the veggies or change sauces if I get too bored with it!

Weekend Weigh-In: 183.8 Pounds - The Lowest I've Been in a While!

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I have been back from vacation for over a week now and I’ve been “back on the wagon” with keto since I got home. I’ve been working on losing the few pounds that came on during vacation and today I’m at a new low of 183.8 pounds. I’m so close to the 170s, I can almost taste it! Hitting the 170s will be a big victory for me. It’s my first “goal” weight. Then, it’s off to my next goal of 150 and my final goal of 135 (although my final goal could change as I get closer to there. It’s been a long time since I was THAT low so I may not want to go that low when I get there. We’ll see.)

My keto routine is probably quite boring, but it’s working so well for me that I don’t dare mix it up too much!

Breakfast: McDonald’s Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Biscuit minus the biscuit. I don’t really like the biscuits at McDonald’s so it’s pretty easy for me to just toss it aside and not worry about eating it.

Lunch: Turkey Burger with A-1 and green beans with butter. It’s quick and easy and fills me up.

Afternoon snack: Muscle Milk Banana Crème shake - I don’t really like bananas as a fruit, but as a shake - so good!

Dinner: I got the Moe’s at Home last week and that worked out well. I may do that again or just eat Chipotle or Bunless Bacon and Cheese Whoppers minus the bun since it’s a short week and I don’t feel like cooking.

Night Snack: I have my GG crackers at night - four of them with cream cheese and Everything Bagel seasoning. The added bonus, if you can call it that, is that thanks to all the fiber, you don’t want to overeat them. I’m scared to see what would happen if I ate more than four because four is enough to get you making a bathroom trip almost as soon as you wake up! They are super filling so I usually don’t need any other snacks at night after my crackers. That has really helped my weight loss.

On weekends, I don’t eat breakfast and have Chipotle or some other meat + salad type meal for lunch and then Quest Pizza or a bunless burger for dinner. If I get sick of any of it, I try something that I know is keto-friendly to keep me from getting bored. Like today, I had Panera, which I usually dread going to, but I just couldn’t eat Chipotle again! The green goddess salad is amazing and full of good stuff like chicken, eggs, bacon, and avocado.

Walmart Keto Haul

I stopped in to Walmart today to get one thing - Everything Bagel seasoning for my GG Crackers. I didn’t even get a cart. I hate going to Walmart unless it’s like super early in the morning. It’s too crazy when it’s busy! But I was desperate for my Everything Bagel seasoning because I ran out last night. As I entered the store, I decided to swing by the prepared foods area to see what they had. I had been planning on having Chipotle all week for dinner, but I figured I’d check and see if there was anything interesting at Walmart.

I saw the Moe’s at Home Fajita Style Shredded Chicken and got so excited. I haven’t seen this before, but I do know my coworkers rave about Moe’s. At 130 calories and 1 g net carb per serving, this looks like a great option. So, I grabbed the chicken, but now of course I need some toppings so I grab some guac, which is right next to where the prepared foods are. But, then I realize I’m going to need lettuce and cheese and suddenly, I need a cart. I set the chicken and guac down and go snag a mini-cart. One of the customers laughed at me when I came back to grab the stuff I had randomly set down in the fruit section. “I just came in for 1 thing and now I need a cart!” We had a good laugh over how that always seems to happen.

Now with my cart, I got a bag of shredded lettuce and some shredded cheese. I also stocked up on Chiptole Tabasco, which I meant to get earlier at the grocery store, but had forgotten, but this will go great on my Moe’s. So, now dinner for the week is set! Everything I bought (including the Everything Bagel seasoning) was around $20 - half the price of having Chipotle bowls every night. I’ll let you know how the chicken tastes. They also had a steak version!

Ultimate Guide to Eating Keto at Your Favorite Restaurants and Fast Food Spots

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While cooking your own keto meals often gets you the best results, sometimes you just have to eat out, whether you’re out running errands or at a restaurant with friends. I’ve gathered your best keto options at tons of popular fast food places and restaurants so you’ll never wonder what to eat!

APPLEBEES

They’ve got lots of keto friendly options. Pick a protein and add a veg or salad. Easy. One option is the Grilled Chicken Breast With a Side of Fire-Grilled Veggies.

BAJA FRESH

Build a bowl with Lettuce, Chicken, Guacamole, Cheese, and Pico de Gallo or ask for the Side By Side, which is charbroiled chicken, jack cheese, handmade guacamole, and Pico de Gallo alongside an avocado topped salad. I’ve found that it’s a bit of a secret menu item. It’s not always listed on the menu, but they usually will ring it up if you ask.

BAREBURGER

If you’re sick of lettuce wrapped burgers, Bareburger will cover your beef, turkey, or bison burger in collard greens. They also have keto-friendly fats like cheese, bacon, avocado, and other veggies that you can add as well.

BLAZE PIZZA

They’ve got a keto pizza crust now made from a base of cauliflower, mozzarella cheese, flaxseed, and eggs. Each slice is just 3 g net carbs.

BONEFISH GRILL

They specialize in seafood so stick to grilled and seared proteins like salmon, sea bass, steak, shrimp, and trout.

BOSTON MARKET

Get the rotisserie chicken and a caesar salad or one of the veggies like green beans or broccoli. The creamed spinach is another option.

BUFFALO WILD WINGS

Their Traditional Wings have 0 carbs and many of their sauces only have 1-3 grams carbs. Try Mild, Medium, Hot, Wild, and Blazin' sauces, as well as the Parmesan Garlic and Spicy Garlic.

BURGER KING

The Bacon and Cheese Whopper minus the bun is my go-to lately.

CHEESECAKE FACTORY

Check out their Skinnylicious category. The grilled salmon, lettuce-wrap tacos, and salads are all good choices.

CHICK-FIL-A

They’re known for chicken, so check out their grilled chicken. They are one of the few places serving grilled nuggets. Their salads are pretty good, too.

CHILI’S

Get the steak plus a green veggie. Burgers are always an option (minus the bun).

CHIPOTLE

Bowl with no rice or beans. Add fajita peppers, cheese, lettuce, salsa, sour cream, and/or guacamole, as desired. I usually choose sour cream OR guacamole to keep calories in check.

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IN-N-OUT

Choose "The Flying Dutchman," which is two patties with two slices of cheese melted in between. And you should definitely get that "Animal Style" with extra spread, pickles, and grilled onions. East Coasters are crying.

JERSEY MIKE’S

Just get the Sub in a Tub. It’s all the toppings and fillings of your favorite sub minus the bread.

JIMMY JOHN’S

Get the unwich and your favorite sub. I like the turkey with provolone or the tuna unwich. If you think you’ll miss the chips, get a pickle as a side.

MCDONALD’S

Get the Quarter Pounder with Cheese or Big Mac and toss the buns. The Big Mac special sauce will add carbs, but I’ve eaten it and still lost weight if I watch the rest of my carbs for the day.

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NOODLES AND COMPANY

They’ve got zoodles now! Your best option is the Zucchini Pesto with Grilled Chicken. The Caesar Salad with Chicken (minus the croutons) is another good choice.

OLIVE GARDEN

The herb-grilled salmon is a good option. Watch the salad as it will add carbs from the dressing.

OUTBACK

Order a salad or other veggie instead of a baked potato. Pick any of the steaks or fish like lobster, halibut, crab, and salmon. Their salmon is actually really great!

PANERA

Get the green goddess salad, which has chicken, egg, and avocado.

PRET A MANGER

Get the Pret’s Chef Salad With Herb Ranch Dressing with roasted turkey, eggs, avocado, and bacon over the top of greens with cucumber. Add herb ranch dressing for a keto-friendly meal.

RED LOBSTER

Just say no to the Cheddar Bay biscuits. Choose items like the steamed lobster, crab legs, grilled shrimp, or scallops. Add some veggies or a salad.

RED ROBIN

Red Robin is known for their burgers so get one with a lettuce wrap or just toss the bun and use a fork and knife. The Royal has a fried egg on top and the Guacamole Bacon is a keto lover’s delight.

RUBY TUESDAY’S

They specialize in Cajun-style dishes so look for the dry rubs. They also have burgers and steaks and chicken dishes with avocado or bacon.

SHAKE SHACK

Get a burger with a lettuce wrap or consider the Smoke Shack (minus the bun), which has cheese and bacon and spicy relish.

SUBWAY

Get your fave sub as a salad. Don’t bother with the chopped salad (they bring out a giant bowl and chop everything up). Just ask for the regular salad. They’ll just layer everything in a bowl. Much quicker and easier for everyone! Just avoid sugary dressings and stick to vinegar and oil. I like the tuna salad.

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TACO BELL

Go for the Cantina Power Bowl, but skip the rice and beans. Get lettuce, sour cream, cheese, extra protein, guacamole, and hot sauce.

TGI FRIDAYS

Try the Cobb Salad with Grilled Chicken or a lettuce wrapped burger. The salads are a lot of calories so order the smaller lunch size. Ranch, blue cheese, and Caesar are your best dressing choices.

WENDY’S

The Baconator is a good choice here. Toss the bun and hold the ketchup. Wendy’s has grilled chicken, too.

Up 4 Pounds from Vacation, but Probably Water Weight!

I did my official weekend weigh-in and it wasn’t pretty. I’m up 4 pounds from my pre-vacation weight of 184.8 pounds. The good news is that I think most of this is just water weight and it will fall off pretty quickly now that I’m back to keto. I was 192 pounds the night I got back from vacation so I’ve already dropped some. I stuck to keto when I could (including this awesome Caesar salad from Broadway Burger), but I did go off plan so I’m paying the price now! I am pretty good about getting right back on plan when I get home from vacation, but it does usually waste a week getting back to where I was before.

It feels good to be back on keto because it takes all the guesswork out of what to eat. On vacation, our biggest debates were what to eat. My girlfriend is notoriously picky and I was attempting to stay keto so our options were limited. Now that I’m back home, I’ve got my good old staples that I rely on during keto - Chipotle bowls, my Quest pizza, bunless burgers, my GG crackers.

My motivation is at an all-time high though because of the pictures of my outfits from vacation. Seeing the results I’ve gotten so far is just motivation to keep going! I know I can lose the weight. I’ve done it before so it’s just a matter of sticking to my plan and giving it some time.

My get back on track menu is Chipotle bowls for lunch, Quest pizza or bunless burgers for dinner, my GG crackers with cream cheese and Everything Bagel seasoning for night snacks. During the week, I’m going to get my usual bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit minus the biscuit for breakfast, turkey burgers for lunch, and dinner will probably be Subway salads or Chipotle.

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The new Carne Asada from Chipotle is pretty tasty. I’m not a huge beef eater, but I’ve recently gotten sick of just chicken and pork so I’ve tried the steak and now the Carne Asada from Chipotle. The Carne Asada is a bit more flavorful than the regular steak. I’ve had it twice now with guacamole, salsa, cheese, and lettuce and it’s working well to get me back on track. I do like my bowls better with Chipotle Tabasco on top. I ran out and had to go without today and that was sad.

6 Steps to Keto-fy Your Kitchen

Ready to take the keto plunge, but not sure how to start? Getting your kitchen keto-ready will set you up for success. Here’s a few tips to make the transition!

1. Pick a Start Day

Before jumping in unprepared, stop and make a plan for when you’re going to start. Picking a date helps you have time to plan your meals, clear out your kitchen of the bad stuff, and fill it up with keto-friendly choices.

2. Sort Out Your Pantry and Fridge

Take some time to get rid of food that isn’t on plan. If you have breads and cookies laying around, you’re more likely to go off plan just as you’re getting started. If you don’t have it, you can’t eat it.

3. Stock Up on Keto-Friendly Food

Make a menu so you know what you’ll be eating and then fill up your fridge with keto-friendly options. Things I always like to have on-hand: hard-boiled eggs, cream, protein like chicken or tuna, cheese, veggies, ranch dressing, coconut oil, butter, low carb protein shakes, Chipotle Tabasco (for adding some kick to my Chipotle bowls), cream cheese, GG high-fiber crackers, and Everything Bagel seasoning.

4. Make a List of Carb Counts for Your Favorite Foods

When you’re first starting out, you might want a reminder of how many carbs are in the main foods you eat. I also like the Stupid Simple Keto app because it takes the guesswork out of counting carbs.

5. Don’t Forget the Drinks

Food isn’t your only source of carbs - drinks can be full of carbs. Juices are a no-go as are sugary sodas. Make the switch to water, tea, or seltzer or other low carb drinks. Water is best, but I need something like Crystal Light to put in it because I don’t like plain water. Make sure to count the carbs in those - most have a gram or two of carbs! Don’t forget to count alcoholic drink carbs as well. I stick to Spiked Seltzer or Rum and Diet Cokes.

6. Make Sure You Have Cooking Tools

Although it’s possible to eat out and stay keto, most people do better if they make their own food. Stock your kitchen with the tools you’ll need to cook such as pans for frying eggs, baking dishes for roasting veggies, a bullet blender for making Bulletproof Coffee, a George Foreman Grill for cooking burgers. I also make sure I have a stash of storage containers for storing and transporting food for lunches.

Progress: Vacation Shots from Atlantic City

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I used to hate taking full body shots, especially on vacation! It was a reminder of how much weight I had put on. Even if I was having a blast, I hated having the photographic evidence staring me in the face. I took a lot of head shots and clever angles. It’s f*cked up and a bit baffling since I usually felt pretty good about myself regardless of size, but seeing it in photos was that dose of reality I just didn’t want.

This trip, I took lots of full body shots! I was feeling pretty fabulous on this trip. I hit a new low weight - 184.8 pounds before I left and I was definitely feeling myself. Our hotel room sadly did not include a full-length mirror, which was annoying AF, but we just took photos of our outfits so we could see what they looked like! I did find a nice big mirror in the ladies room in the casino so I snuck a picture in there, too.

I’m finally seeing the progress of all the hard work I’ve done and it’s just so weird to me because I’m not even to my first goal yet of 179, my former “before” weight. It’s so wild to me how great I feel at this weight when it was this same weight that spurred me into action years ago the first time I did low carb and got to goal.

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I’ve been trying to take lots of pictures to document my progress because it helps me see that changes are happening, even when the scale is slow to catch up. Speaking of which, the scale is not happy post-trip. I did really good at sticking mostly to plan at the start of the trip, but ended up eating whatever I felt like towards the end. I didn’t go crazy, but it definitely knocked me out of ketosis. I weighed in at 191.8 today, which is 7 pounds up. I know I didn’t eat 7 pounds of calories so it’s most likely water weight and will drop off now that I’m back on plan. My fingers are STILL feeling a bit swollen from all the salt in the restaurant food.

This weekend will be my reset where I focus on getting back into Keto full-time and I’m hoping some of that vacation weight starts dropping off soon!

3 Tips For Making Keto Easier

I’m always looking for timesavers and hacks for doing keto. Anything that can make it easier to stick with helps keep me on track and sticking to my plan.

Have you ever run out of cream for your coffee? I used to hate when that happened. Now, when it happens, I don’t panic because I keep butter and coconut oil stocked up so I can make Bulletproof coffee. Some days, I’m just in the mood for Bulletproof coffee, but other times, it’s because I’ve run out of cream and am too lazy to go to the store!

I made a keto pumpkin spice bulletproof latte using the Starbucks Pumpkin Spice K-cups, coconut oil, and butter. I add a tablespoon of butter and oil to the brewed coffee and whip it for a few seconds in my bullet blender. It’s frothy and yummy. I was worried the butter/coconut oil might not work with the Pumpkin Spice but it tasted great!

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Tip #2 is for making roasted brussel sprouts. I made these last week and liked them, but wanted them crispier - that’s the best part. So, this time, I cut the brussels smaller and sort of fanned them out so they weren’t in a little ball. I tried to separate the leaves as much as possible. Then I added oil and Montreal Chicken Seasoning (which is great on everything) and baked for 35 minutes in a 400 degree oven. The leaves came out crispy and browned, just like I like them! It takes a bit longer to do this, but you can make a big batch and have them for during the week.

My last tip is making a list of your go-to fast food meals for those days when you have to work late or just need food NOW. Chipotle is usually my standby, but I wasn’t in the mood so I went to one of my other fast food options - the bacon and cheese Whopper from Burger King (minus the bun). It’s got all the good toppings - lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, mayo, and ketchup with the added bonus of bacon and cheese. It’s an easy meal that is on plan. I usually scrape off some of the ketchup because it’s higher in carbs and also because without the bun, the ketchup can be a bit overwhelming. Bunless burgers are always a good bet for fast food restaurants!

Perdue Lightly Breaded Chicken Strips in a Salad

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While looking for some new lunch/dinner options, I saw people raving over Tyson Blackened Chicken Strips. People couldn’t stop talking about them, which is odd for a frozen chicken strip. The Tyson site was full of reviews about how great they were, many from fellow Keto dieters, but also complaints that people couldn’t find them anymore. The Tyson folks were kindly answering questions in a friendly vague way that wasn’t really all that helpful. A quick search showed there were no Blackened Chicken Strips anywhere near me. I began to mourn a chicken strip I had never even had.

During my grocery trip today, I searched in vain, just in case the internet was wrong, but alas, no blackened chicken strips. I did, however, find some Tyson Lightly Breaded Chicken Strips that were only 6g carbs. I had tried the fresh version of these that is available with the lunch meat and prepared foods, but I’d never tried the frozen ones, which oddly have like half the carbs!

I wasn’t in the mood for cooking this week so my plan was to just make a simple Cobb-ish type salad with the chicken strips, eggs, black olives, feta cheese, lettuce, and dressing. All was well until I noticed I bought the fat free Feta by accident. It’s not the end of the world, but is pretty much the antithesis of keto. There’s plenty of other fats in my salad so this isn’t a crisis, just more of an annoyance because who wants fat free feta anyway! Blech. The salad turned out okay, even with the fat free feta. Thank god I got some parm as a backup.

Last week I was having the kohlrabi noodles every night. Well, today, there was NO kohlrabi noodles to be found. They were gone! This blog isn’t that popular to cause a rush on kohlrabi noodles….or is it! I’ll have to check back in a day or so to see if they’ve stocked up again. I’m sad about it. They didn’t even have any shirataki noodles. My whole area must being doing keto.

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I did some massive shopping yesterday. My clothes are getting pretty tired and I felt like I needed a bit of an upgrade since I’m starting a new project at work. The scale is as stubborn as ever. My weight loss for the week was .2 pounds, but I am getting smaller somehow! I’m feeling really great about how I look at the moment so that’s been nice. I still haven’t even reached my former “fat” weight so it’s nice to feel so good about myself even if the scale is doing its own thing.

Video: My Eggfast Results Plus My Menu for the Week

In this video, I discuss my egg fast experience and results. I also walk you through my meal plan for the week. I do plan to incorporate some of those egg meals into my week, just not all at once!

Here’s some of the products that will make your life easier. I love the Ecolution ceramic pans. I have them in big and little sizes and they cook great and clean up easy! I got mine at Home Goods. A bullet blender is so useful for so many things. I use it for blending my Bulletproof coffee and most recently, for making my cream cheese egg pancake batter. The Dash griddle and waffle maker are so adorably cute. They are TINY. They come in fun colors and are perfect for just making food for 1-2 people. I haven’t quite mastered mine yet, but I have both the griddle and waffle maker and they are adorable.

How My Egg Fast Went

I was excited to start my egg fast this morning. I like eggs, although I wasn’t sure about an entire day of them! I started my day with 2 fried eggs cooked in a bit of butter topped with 2 TB cream cheese, and everything bagel seasoning. It was really good! Everything bagel seasoning makes everything taste great! I was super full after that so I forgot to eat my cheese for a snack.

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For lunch, I had egg salad with 2 hardboiled eggs, 2 TB mayo, everything bagel seasoning (because why not), a bit of ground mustard, and a cut up cheese stick. My cat was drawn to my egg salad as if it were served over a bed of catnip. I have no idea why, but I ended up eating the egg salad standing up at my kitchen island because he wouldn’t leave me alone.

I felt a little rough after lunch. Just tired and a bit weak. I had a cheese stick with olive oil, salt, and pepper as a snack and then a wedge of brie a bit later. That helped a bit. I made some bulletproof coffee with Kerrygold butter and coconut oil to get me to dinner.

Dinner was the one I was most excited for. I made cream cheese egg pancakes. They looked ugly, but they tasted great. I topped them with butter and Walden Farms no calorie, no carb syrup. Super yummy and didn’t even feel like I was eating eggs….again.

To make the pancakes, I put 2 eggs and 2 TB cream cheese in a bullet blender and mixed together. I heated up 1 TB butter in a pan and poured the batter on top. I cooked one side and then attempted to flip it over nicely but you can see how my attempt went! I finished cooking it and served with 1 TB butter and the syrup.

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I don’t think I’ll do this again tomorrow. I like all of these egg meals independently, but having them all in one day was rough. I don’t know how people do 3 or even 5 days of this! I’ve had a bit of a headache all day and I blame the egg fast!

We’ll see what the scale says tomorrow, but the thing I like about keto is that I don’t feel hungry and I don’t feel like I’m on some wacky diet. While I wasn’t super hungry (probably because of all the fat I’m eating), I actually was craving vegetables all day. I’m going to try and go the full day just doing the egg fast as planned for the sake of being able to report on it, but I’m definitely jonesing for some veggies.

Grocery list for the day:

  • 6 eggs (4 fresh and 2 hardboiled)

  • 4 TB cream cheese (2 with breakfast, 2 for dinner)

  • 2 cheese sticks (1 in egg salad, 1 as snack)

  • 2 small wedges brie (snack)

  • 2 TB mayo (in egg salad)

  • 1 TB olive oil (with cheese stick snack)

  • 4 TB butter (2 with breakfast, 2 with dinner)

  • everything bagel seasoning (with breakfast and lunch)

  • salt and pepper

  • ground mustard (in egg salad)

All the meals I made today were great and I plan to eat them again as part of my normal keto diet, just maybe not all at once! This was a super easy day of eating since I always knew what I was going to eat and all the meals were easy to make. This could be beneficial for someone starting out who doesn’t want to think about what to eat.

Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese Dressing

I love buffalo chicken wings so a salad inspired by that? I’m all in! This comes together super fast - even faster if you use precooked rotisserie chicken. I poached and shredded chicken breasts and that was the hardest part of this whole recipe. If you can boil water, you can poach chicken!

I did take some time to google the best way to poach chicken because I’ve done it before and had mixed results. I don’t usually like poached chicken unless it’s being used as a base for chicken salad or something else. This turned out pretty great and I was actually looking forward to coming home tonight to eat it again for dinner!

  • 3 Chicken Breasts, poached or otherwise cooked and shredded

  • Water or chicken stock

  • Salt and other herbs for poaching

  • 1/4 cup buffalo wing sauce

  • 2 TB butter

  • Lettuce

  • Celery

  • Blue cheese dressing

If you are going to poach the chicken (instead of using precooked chicken): Put chicken breasts in a pot and cover with water or chicken stock to about an inch over the chicken. Add some salt and any additional seasonings you want to the water. You don’t have to add any herbs or use chicken stock but it may give more flavor. Since this chicken is just going to be covered in wing sauce, I skipped the seasonings besides salt. Turn the heat onto medium and wait for it to come to a low boil. When it starts to boil, reduce hit and let cook the rest of the way for approximately 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Remove breasts from pot and let rest and cool on a plate for a bit. Shred the chicken with your fingers or two forks.

In a saucepan, melt the butter and add the wing sauce and stir to combine. Add the shredded chicken and combine so all chicken is coated in wing sauce.

Serve over top lettuce and celery and top with Blue Cheese Dressing. I forgot the celery when I made mine * facepalm * but this was still super tasty!

Quick Keto Lunch Ideas

I’m always looking for quick lunch ideas that don’t require a lot of prep and are easy to transport to work. This pre-made chef salad from my local grocery store has plenty of turkey, ham, cheese, eggs, and veggies and even comes with a dressing packet. Here’s some other quick ideas..

  • Tuna or chicken salad with veggies or lettuce

  • Roasted or grilled chicken with roasted veggies and dip

  • Bacon, hardboiled eggs, and lettuce or veggies with dressing or guac

  • Turkey or chicken sausage with cooked or raw veggies and dip

  • Pepperoni, salami or other meat with string cheese and tomatoes

  • Cobb salad

  • Caesar salad with chicken (minus the croutons - use parmesan crisps instead)

  • Bunless burger with cheese and your choice of toppings (pickles, onions, mayo, mustard, guac)

  • Steak, pork, or chicken bowl with cauliflower rice, cheese, salsa, sour cream, cheese, guac

What are some of your favorite Keto lunches?

Review: Epic Artisanal Pork Rinds - Sea Salt and Pepper

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I have a confession to make. I used to hate pork rinds. Back in my old low carb days, I tried them and almost gagged. I hated them. I hated the smell, the texture, the taste…all of it. When I started Keto, I decided to give them a try again. I got a different brand and started with pork rind nachos, figuring if they were covered in cheese and salt, I wouldn’t notice the taste.

The Smithfield Farms ones I got from my grocery store actually weren’t bad. Either pork rind technology had changed since 10 years ago or I just got a better brand. I still wouldn’t binge on them, but with salsa, cheese, and sometimes guac, they were pretty tasty.

Enter Epic Artisanal Pork Rinds. I saw them on sale at the grocery store and picked up the sea salt and pepper flavor and the chile and lime flavor figuring I should expand my pork rind horizons. I popped open the sea salt and pepper ones and gave them a cautious taste. Holy cow (or should I say pig?)! These are incredible. The flavor was amazing. They had a nice crunch. It was almost like eating potato chips. I was in shock. I was actually eating pork rinds without smothering them in cheese! They are made with “organic, non-gmo, pastured, and pork raised without antibiotics combined with simple seasonings” and I think that makes the difference.

I’m really hooked on these now. The sea salt and pepper is definitely my favorite of the two I got, but I got some queso and I’m going to try some pork rind nachos with the chile and lime…but the great thing is I don’t NEED to. I have eaten those on their own and they are just as good plain.

I never thought I’d be a pork rind lover, but here we are. If you see them, give them a try and you might get hooked like me! They also come in:

Bored with Your Chipotle Bowl? Try the Chipotle Tabasco Sauce

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I eat a LOT of Chipotle bowls. They take the guesswork out of what to eat because it’s so easy to just grab one on the way home from work. My go-to bowl is usually:

  • No rice or beans

  • Fajita Peppers

  • Chicken or Carnitas (Steak or Barbacoa when I get bored of those)

  • Tomato salsa

  • Medium salsa

  • Corn salsa (sometimes)

  • Sour cream or guacamole (I pick one or the other - not both!)

  • Cheese

  • Lettuce

Even with choosing different meats or sour cream one day and guac the next, I had gotten in a bit of a rut with my Chipotle bowls. One day, I was getting my fork and napkins and I noticed all the Tabascos lined up with to-go cups. I like Tabasco, but never got it at Chipotle. I saw a Chipotle Tabasco (the pepper, not the restaurant itself), which I didn’t even know was a thing. Guess what? I loved it! It gave my bowl a different flavor and it was like eating a brand new bowl. It’s got a smoky flavor and a medium level of heat. I may have to stock up on my next grocery store trip.

A Beautiful Bunless Bacon Burger

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I have been having soup for almost a week and I’m a bit over it! My cold is hopefully on the way out although my appetite is just not quite there yet. I was craving a burger last night, but was too lazy to go get it so when I was still sort of craving it to day, it was meant to be!

I have not really been doing keto since I got home from NYC, but I’ve also barely been eating (besides soup) so I’m now at 188.2 pounds - back to my pre-vacation weight. I was a bit lower a week or so before I went on vacation, but poofed up while PMSing so I feel like I’m back to where I was before NYC. With nothing planned yet until the end of September, I’m going to try and knock out as much of this weight as I can before my next trip.

The burger is a Bacon Whopper with Cheese from Burger King minus the bun. It’s super filling and usually really good. I don’t know what it is about my local Burger King, but their food usually looks really good (for a fast food place). I worked at a Burger King in high school so I know the struggle. I also had some sugar snap peas with buttermilk ranch dressing. I’ve been sort of not in the mood for vegetables lately, but the sugar snap peas are getting me through my vegetable funk. I normally love salads and veggies, but I think the cold has turned me off of a lot of food at the moment.

I’m sort of antsy to get this weight loss done. I know it’s a process and I’ll get there, but it’s frustrating how long it takes (in comparison to how easy it seemed to put it on). I’m about 10 pounds away from my “former fat weight” so that will be a bit of a milestone for me. I swore I would never go over that weight, but shit happens. I’ve stopped beating myself up over it and just do what I need to do to get where I need to be.

The Sunday Sizzle: Cute Tanks, Bikini Boosts, and Easy Meals

I’ve had a relaxing weekend. I got most of my pre-trip errands done, although there seems to be a shortage of Chewlottas again, so Doki won’t be happy to hear about that. I’ll have to hit up Target AGAIN to see if they’ve restocked. They are like crack to Doki so I can’t come home empty-handed!

I got this super cute Umbro tank from Target. I’ve been looking in the activewear section for tanks for summer. I like that a lot of them have that wicking fabric so you aren’t a sweaty mess! I see people all the time in NYC and Atlantic City walking around in shirts with giant sweat marks and that ain’t gonna be me no matter how hot it gets! This one doesn’t even look like a sport tank, which is a bonus!

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I’ve lost some weight since I bought my original bikini top and it’s getting a bit big so I went on the hunt for a replacement, but I’m not sure how I feel about the one I got. It’s got those Wonderbra-like inserts that make your girls look amazing and uplifted. I totally feel like a bathing beauty for the 40s in this suit, but hoping I won’t have a wardrobe malfunction at the beach! I’m going to bring both tops so I have options. My girlfriend doesn’t do well in the heat and with a shark lurking off the coast of New Jersey, I doubt we’ll be in the water much, but still. I may have to hit up the pool bar instead!

If you haven’t checked out my keto blog, The Keto Blogger, give it a peek if you are looking for easy keto recipes. You don’t even have to be doing keto - some recipes and meal ideas work well for anyone even if you aren’t trying to lose weight. This “chaffle” is a waffle made out of egg and cheese, topped with butter and ChocZero sugarfree syrup. It was pretty tasty although I overfilled my mini waffle maker and made an enormous mess on the counter and this chaffle is a bit of an ugly baby…but a tasty one! Also on the menu this week, this amazing chili!

Hello, Size 12s!

I stopped by Walmart to get a few things and saw these cute EV1 shorts with the stripe on the side. They’re from Ellen Degeneres’ clothing line. The only sizes they had left were 12 and 16. I took them both to the dressing room, but decided to think positive and try the 12s, half expecting them not to fit at all, but lo and behold - they fit!

I haven’t been a 12 in a really long time! I’m going shopping for more clothes this weekend for my beach trip so I’ll have a chance to try on more shorts and see if this is some vanity sizing on Ellen’s part or if I really am a size 12!

I had been a bit frustrated that the scale is fluctuating all over the place but I can tell I’m losing weight just by looking in the mirror, even if it hasn’t shown up on the scale yet! So, this was a nice surprise and a non-scale victory! I had just commented this morning that my size 14 jeans were feeling baggy.

This has given me the push I need to just stay the course! I’ll get there eventually and I am making progress.