Pasta Substitute – Spaghetti Squash

As a former carb-o-holic I’m always searching for something to replace pasta.  Pasta was one of those comfort foods that I went to as a standard for a quick easy meal.  Nowadays pasta is off the menu but I still crave that meal that I loved for so many years growing up!  I’ve tried Zoodles and they were great but zucchini noodles can be hard to get right sometimes.  I’ve been meaning to try spaghetti squash for some time now but I could never find it in my local grocery store…until now!  Baked spaghetti squash has a slightly nutty flavor to it that is subtle.  It also has a nice firm but not too crunch texture that is pleasing to eat.

Spaghetti Squash

  • Servings: Varies
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Preheat your oven to 400 to degrees.  Always make sure you wash your squash.  (Hey, that rhymes!)  Can’t be too careful as you don’t know who handled it before you!  Cut it lengthwise down the middle and scrape all of the seeds from inside of your victim.

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Take the two halves and place them in your 13″ x 9″ baking pan cut side down.  Add about one inch of water to the pan.  I attempted to salt and pepper the squash prior to baking it but that ended up being a futile effort.  Yeah I know.  Water.  Duh.

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Is your oven heated yet?  If it is pop those bad boys in there for roughly 45 minutes.  You should be able to very easily pierce the skin on the squash when they’re done.  Once they’re done the fun begins!  With an oven mitt and a sturdy utensil (Kitchen tongs work well!) flip the squash halves over.  With a fork begin to scrape the meat of the squash in long motions from inside the skin.  You should be able to get almost all the material from the skin.

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And that’s it!  Baking spaghetti squash is simple enough to do and it tastes amazing!  We topped ours with our Garlic Basil Marinara Sauce, grated parmesan, salt and pepper and one serving of shredded mozzarella cheese.  Get creative and enjoy!

100 Grams Spaghetti Squash:  31 Calories, 0.6 g Fat, 0.6 g Protein, 5.5 g Net Carbs (7 g Carbs, 1.5 g Fiber)

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Lasagna Meatballs

I’ve had a craving for something Italian for the past few days that I couldn’t not get rid of no matter what I ate.  Then it hit me!  Lasagna Meatballs!  I love this recipe.  There is something so satisfying about the tender baked meat balls combined with the flavorful marinara that really hits the spot.  It’s a two step recipe so it takes a little more time to make but it is worth it!  Check it out!

Lasagna Meatballs

  • Servings: 4-8
  • Difficulty: Moderate
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For the meatballs:

  • 1 Pound Sweet or Hot Italian Sausage (We use sweet)
  • 1 Pound Ground Beef
  • 1/3 Cup Almond Flour
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Tbsp Dried Parsley
  • 1 Tsp Lite Salt
  • 1/4 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/2 Tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Everything else:

  • 2 Cups Garlic Basil Marinara (Follow link for recipe)
  • 1 1/2 Cups Whole Milk Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1 Cup Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.  To start making the meatballs combine all the ingredients on the meatballs list in a bowl and mix well.  Form the meat into approximately 32 one ounce meatballs.  (They’ll be about 1 1/2 inches in diameter.)  Put the meatballs on a foil (or you can use a silpat) lined baking sheet.  Bake for 15 minutes.

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Once the meatballs are cooked place them in a 13’x9′ casserole baking dish in a single layer.  Pour half of the garlic basil marina over the meatballs.  Spread the ricotta cheese evenly across the top of your meatballs.  Do this one small spoonful at a time so there is enough to cover them evenly.  Then pour the other half of your marinara over the top of the ricotta.  Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over the top.

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Is your oven still set for 375?  Good.  Place your dish in the oven and continue to bake for another 30 minutes.  Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.  Enjoy!

8 Servings of 4 Meatballs:  494 Calories, 39 g Fat, 31 g Protein, 4 g Net Carbs

Recipe originally appeared on http://www.ibreatheimhungry.com

 

 

Bunless Keto Burgers

Life has been hectic around here the last few weeks with soccer, work and summer yard work starting up.  Having little to no time to plan or cook a meal we’ve had to resort to shaking up old pre-keto favorites and making them low carb!

Summer time around this house means cooking on the grill! We have a Char-Griller 5050 Duo Gas-and-Charcoal Grill and it gets a workout every summer! We fired it up for the first time the other day to make Bunless Keto Burgers.  This isn’t exactly rocket science.  It’s just a burger without a bun!

Bunless Keto Burgers

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • 1 lb 70/30 Ground Beef Divided Into Four 4 Oz Patties
  • Morton Lite Salt and Pepper To Taste
  • Your Favorite Keto Friendly Toppings!  (Picture is 1 Oz Swiss Cheese, 2 Strips of Crisp Bacon, A Few White Onion Slices, Yellow Mustard and Mayonnaise)

Fire that grill up to medium heat and start cooking!  I generally keep the burgers on one side for 4-6 minutes depending on how thick the patty is.  Once the burgers are charred to your taste and heated on the inside to a minimum of 160 degrees (Food poisoning is bad, mmkay?  Check it with a thermometer!) you’re ready to dress your burger how you like!  No bun?  No problem!  All the flavor of our favorite fast summer time meal with none of the carbs.  Enjoy!

Bratwurst and Saurkrat

This isn’t quite a recipe so I’m calling it a meal idea. Bratwurst and sauerkraut is an exceptionally Keto friendly meal. Growing up in southwest Pennsylvania these foods are common place here. If you do your label checking for specific brands you’ll find that these foods are very low in net carbs!  These beer bratwurst and sauerkraut are from Aldis.  The brand is from Germany called Deutsche Küche.  

  

2 Links and 1 Cup Saurkraut:  556 Calories, 44 g Fat, 30 g Protein, 2 g Net Carbs

Chicken and Mushroom Alfredo

Ok, I’ll be honest here. Typically we make our own Alfredo sauce here but in this recipe we used a prepackaged alfredo from Aldi’s. (It’s called Priano Alfredo)  It’s cheap, has 4 grams of carbs per serving and it’s tasty!  In the future I’ll add our favorite homemade sauce but until then here is our favorite chicken alfredo.

Chicken and Mushroom Alfredo

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • 6 Oz Chicken Breasts
  • 1 Package Sliced White Button Mushrooms
  • 2 Tbsp Butter
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste
  • Priano Alfredo Sauce (Or your favorite low carb Alfredo)

Go ahead and grab a medium skillet and melt your butter over medium high heat. Once your butter is melted add your chicken breasts. Salt and pepper to taste. While that’s cooking grab a small sauté pan and melt another tbsp and then add your mushrooms. Once your chicken has cooked through and your mushrooms are sautéed until tender split your chicken onto two plates. Add half the mushrooms to the top of each serving of chicken. Cook the alfredo sauce until hot either in the microwave or another small pan. Pour one serving of sauce onto your chicken and mushrooms. It’s simple, fast and delicious!  Serve with a side of your favorite Keto vegetables. We chose brussel sprouts but buttered broccoli is also a good choice!  Enjoy!

Buffalo Chicken Salad

Today’s post is brought to you by the word leftovers.  This recipe is fantastic because it is simple to make with leftovers from another recipe I’ve posted.  Earlier this week we showed you how to make a simple and delicious Buffalo Grilled Chicken Salad.  When you make the salad version you can easily double the recipe and save the leftover chicken breasts to make this effectively making two meals at once.

Buffalo Chicken Salad

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: Easy
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First you’ll need to make the chicken breasts according to this recipe.  Double the ingredients if you intend to make an actual salad and this salad.

Take your prepared buffalo chicken breasts and place them in a food processor to grind them up.  (This is a great food processor to use. Black & Decker 8-Cup Food Processor)

Chop that chicken!

Chop that chicken!

Place the ground chicken in a bowl and set aside.  Next break your celery stalk up into pieces small enough to fit into your food processor.  Pulse until the pieces are finely chopped.  Add the celery to the same bowl as the chicken.  After that add your mayonnaise, salt and pepper, and another serving of the buffalo sauce to the bowl.

Ready to mix!

Ready to mix!

If you want blue cheese in your salad add that too.  Mix well with a spoon and refrigerate.  Split in two for a smaller meal.  You can also add a drizzle of blue cheese salad dressing over top if it fits your macros.  This is a great protein packed lunch from leftovers!  Enjoy!

Entire Recipe (Minus Blue Cheese):  466 Calories, 35 g Fat, 38 g Protein, 1 Total Carb

Quick and Dirty Steak Salad

Ok folks I have to apologize in advance.  Since I started this blog my goal has been to post a recipe a day so that the people following along could have a simple guide to meal planning.  Well today has been hectic with activities and I haven’t had any time to cook anything!  (For your reference.)  This is something I made a few days ago and I put it on the back shelf because it was similar to another recipe I had posted.  The difference here is the prep time.  No time to cook up steak for a salad?  Well the answer to your problems is here…  Steak Ums!  Yes I know this isn’t exactly rocket science but it’s a fast meat to cook when you’re in a pinch and you want a hot salad topping.  I made this salad Greek-ish and you can too.

Quick and Dirty Steak Salad

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • One Serving Romain Lettuce
  • 3 Servings Steak Ums (Or however much fits in your macros.)
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste
  • 1 Tbsp Butter
  • 1 Oz Feta Cheese Crumbles
  • A Few Black Olives
  • Pepperoncini (If you like a little spice…)
  • One Serving Ranch Dressing

What I like about cooking steak ums is you can throw them in a skillet (I’m in love with T Fal and their thermo spot professional cookware.  It’s relatively inexpensive and everything is evenly cooked!  T-fal Professional Thermo-Spot Fry Pan) with 1 tbsp of butter over medium high heat and they’re cooked in about 5 minutes.  I sometimes put a little malt vinegar on the steak as it’s cooking.  It gives it a nice mellow flavor.  Salt and pepper the meat to taste.  Place the meat over your lettuce, add your feta cheese, olives, dressing and pepperocini to the top and you’ve got a quick and easy steak salad.  Enjoy!