Food Prep for During the Week

Having Monday off is always so confusing because I do “Sunday Things” on Monday! That means today was food prep day for during the week. My menu this week is:

Breakfast: Cream Cheese Pancakes with butter and Walden Farms 0 carb syrup with McDonald’s bacon and coffee with cream

Lunch: Turkey burger with A-1 sauce and Green Giant broccoli with cheese sauce

Snack: Banana Cream Protein Shake

Dinner: Salmon with kohlrabi noodles and parm (and maybe Chipotle or other “out” food later in the week)

Dessert: small piece of keto fudge (coconut oil + cocoa powder + Truvia)

Snack: avocado

I purposefully tried to make this week’s menu super simple. I’m going to be pretty busy at work this week so I didn’t want to fuss with complicated recipes. I need grab and go! The cream cheese pancakes are easy to make the night before and reheat well. I’m going to supplement them with some bacon from McDonald’s since I stop there every day to get my coffee.

Turkey burgers are super easy to throw on my George Foreman grill so now I’ve got burgers to last the rest of the week. I use the pre-shaped burgers from the grocery store and add a bit of Montreal Chicken Seasoning before they go on the grill. I’m keeping it simple with just A-1 as a topping and a frozen vegetable side. The Green Giant broccoli with cheese sauce tastes great although a box doesn’t make very much. I only got two smallish servings out of it.

I have some frozen salmon that I’ll heat up tomorrow or dinner with some kohlrabi noodles with parm and butter as a side. That will be at least two dinners. The other nights will probably be my old standby - Chipotle!

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Dessert is keto fudge. I make this once or twice a week and just nibble away at it throughout the week. Put 1/4 cup coconut oil and 3 TB cocoa powder in a mug with dash of Truvia or other sugar free sweetener. Microwave for 40 seconds and pour onto a parchment lined plate (or container of your choosing). Put in the freezer. I just break off a small piece when I want a sweet or chocolatey snack.

I’ve got some avocados on standby for snacks. I’ve been making parm chips with everything bagel seasoning as well when I need a snack. Pile a generous pinch of shredded parm onto a plate. I usually make three piles and pat them into a circle shape. Microwave for one minute. Let stand for a few seconds until they hardened up a bit and then pry off the plate with a fork and top with seasoning.

So, there’s my food for the week!

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.

Recipe: Ginger Garlic Ground Beef Bowl

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I saw this recipe on Wholesome Yum and I knew I had to try it. This is exactly the kind of meal I like to bring to work for lunches during the week - easy to put in a storage container and easy to reheat. An added bonus was that I had a lot of these ingredients already because it has a lot of the same ingredients as the egg roll in a bowl recipe that I’ve made before. My grocery store had all the ground beef on sale, but that made me super skeptical so I got the grass-fed beef instead. Don’t be intimidated by the number of ingredients or the multiple steps. It came together so quick and easy!

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Cauliflower Rice Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp Olive oil

  • 1 lb riced cauliflower (I used bagged fresh riced cauliflower from the store)

  • 1/2 tsp Sea salt

  • 1/8 tsp Black pepper

Beef Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp Olive oil

  • 1 lb Ground beef (I used grass-fed beef)

  • 1/2 tsp Sea salt

  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced (I used the kind in the tube)

  • 1/4 cup Coconut aminos

  • 1/4 cup Beef broth

  • 2 tsp Sesame oil

  • 1/4 tsp Ground ginger (I used Gourmet Garden Lightly Dried Ginger)

  • 1/4 tsp Crushed red pepper flakes

Optional Garnishes:

  • 1/4 cup Green onions, sliced

  • 1 tsp Sesame seeds

  • 1 small Cucumber, sliced

Instructions:

  1. I used bagged, riced cauliflower, but if you are making your own, rice the cauliflower in a food processor.

  2. Heat 1 TB olive oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.

  3. Add cauliflower rice. Season with sea salt and black pepper, if desired. Saute for 3-5 minutes, until cooked through. Remove the cauliflower rice from heat, set aside, and cover to keep warm.

  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the coconut aminos, beef broth, sesame oil, ground ginger, and red pepper flakes. Set the sauce aside.

  5. Turn the heat back to medium-high. Add another tablespoon olive oil to the pan. Add the ground beef and season with sea salt and pepper. Cook for about 8-10 minutes, breaking up the meat with a spatula and stirring occasionally, until browned.

  6. Make a well in the beef and add the minced garlic. Saute for about a minute, until fragrant, then mix into the beef. (I used minced garlic from a tube and just mixed it in with other sauce ingredients and it still tasted fine).

  7. Pour the sauce over the beef. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes, until the sauce is reduced and thickened. I had no liquid left at the end.

  8. Divide the cauliflower rice among plates. Top with ground beef. Garnish with sliced green onions, sesame seeds, and/or cucumber slices. I used cucumber only, but any of the optional garnishes would be great!

This was supposed to make 4 servings, but I only got about 3 out of it (plus a small tasting dish).

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Calories: 513, Fat: 36g, Carbs: 12g Fiber: 3g Protein: 35g (net carbs = 9g)

The Perfect TGIF Keto Dinner!

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When I was growing up, Fridays were pizza nights. My dad would order Pizza Hut (literally the only pizza he seemed to like) and we would sit around the table eating pizza and talking about our day. My parents were both PE teachers so they always had really funny stories and to this day, pizza on Friday reminds me of growing up.

Pizza on low carb/keto for me has always meant either sauce, cheese, and pepperonis on an omelette or in a portobello mushroom cap. I’ve never tried making the Fathead pizza dough. Because of my almond allergy, I don’t use almond flour and I haven’t found the need to buy coconut flour just yet. The omelettes and mushrooms were okay, but it’s just not the same, you know?

You can imagine my delight when I had Quest pizza for the first time. I was skeptical due to the higher carb count but the fiber count is also high making the net carbs really reasonable (only around 6g net carbs for half of the pizza. Even doubling that net carb count by eating the whole thing is still well within a 20g carb allowance. I usually try to keep 1-2 of the Quest pizzas in my freezer for those times when I need a quick keto-friendly meal.

Getting to eat my Friday pizza makes me feel like I’m not dieting and it’s super satisfying because it tastes like regular pizza. Quest has worked a miracle. Next on my “to try” list is the Quest loaded taco protein chips!

I’m about to embark on an egg fast this weekend so I had to squeeze in one good, non-egg meal tonight!

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!