Fried Cabbage with Bacon and Onions

Living in near Pittsburgh Pa we have strong ties to the Polish heritage that runs so strong here.  What ties a group of people together better than their food?  This recipe reminds me of the haluski (Fried cabbage and noodles) that is so often present at family gatherings.  Cabbage is a great low carb food and this dish is a great side kielbasa or just about any other meat.

Fried Cabbage with Bacon and Onions

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • 1 Medium Size Head Green Cabbage, Chopped Loosely (I used a Mandoline Slicer.  Just Slice the Cabbage in 1/4s and go to town!)
  • 4 Tbsp Butter
  • 3 Slices Bacon, Chopped
  • 1/2 Small White Onion, Chopped
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • Morton Lite Salt and Pepper to Taste

We used our handy dandy T-fal Wok again for this recipe but you can use any large pan.  Cook your bacon over medium heat.  Once the fat begins to cook down and there is grease in the pan add your onions.  When the bacon begins to look crisp add the cabbage, salt, pepper, worcestershire sauce and butter.  Stir the mixture occasionally until the cabbage softens.  I allowed the some of the cabbage to brown slightly which I think adds some complexity to the flavor.  I end up adding more salt or pepper once it’s served but that’s entirely up to you!  Enjoy!

1/6th Recipe:  125 Cal, 9 G Fat, 3.2 g Protein, 9.4 g Carbs, 3.6 g Fiber (5.8 g Net Carbs)

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Low Carb Keto Baked Cheese Chips

Snacks can be an issue for those of us following the Ketogenic way of eating.  Pork rinds are crunchy and delicious but there aren’t many alternatives for when you just want something different.  This recipe is fantastic because the final flavor mimics a popular brand of cheese flavored baked snacks.

Baked Cheese Crisps

  • Servings: Varies
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • Any Variety Thinly Sliced Deli Cheese (I like Swiss the best!)
  • Mortons Lite Salt Mixture or Regular Salt
  • Silpat

This recipe is insanely simple.  Preheat your oven to 300 degrees.  Take your thinly sliced cheese slices and slice them into four quarters.  You can make as many chips as you’d like to have at once being mindful that cheese is very calorie dense and some varieties still contain carbohydrates.  Place your silpat on a baking sheet and place the cheese quarters directly on the silpat.  I’ve seen some other people use parchment paper for this recipe and that’s how I tried it initially.  I don’t recommend this because they will definitely stick to the parchment.  It’s a real pain to get them off.  (Update:  Apparently I’ve been using parchment paper all wrong according to my readers.  If you like parchment then go for it!  I personally like using a silpat because it is reusable and convenient to use!)  The silpat (Artisan Silicone Baking Mat, 16.5 x 11 inches) is non stick and they slide right off.   Dust your cheese slices with a small amount of lite salt (Mortons Lite Salt) to your taste.  Some people may find the cheese salty enough without doing this however.  Place your baking sheet full of cheese in the oven for 30 minutes.  If they start to brown around the edges they’re probably done.  Place the baked cheese on paper towels to absorb the extra grease.  They’ll be soft while they’re warm but as they cool they’ll crisp up more.  Enjoy!

Caloric Information Will Vary Depending on the Brand and Type of Cheese Used.  Refer to the Manufacturers Packaging.

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Italian Stir Fry

The ketogenic way of eating is no longer a diet for us but a lifestyle.  There are few ingredients around the house which don’t fit into our way of eating and that makes meal preparation extremely easy for us.  I’m particularly proud of this recipe because it was an experiment.  An experiment that turned out delicious.  All of the ingredients were left over from previous recipes we’ve made or purchased for recipes we never actually made.  This Italian Stir Fry may not be a traditional stir fry and that’s ok.  I called it that because it felt silly to cook it in a Wok.

Italian Stir Fry

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Moderate
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  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
  • 0.5 Tsp Mortons Lite Salt
  • 0.5 Tsp Black Pepper
  • 0.5 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 0.5 Tsp Dried Basil
  • 1 Tbsp Minced Garlic
  • 1/4 Cup White Onion, Coarsely Chopped
  • 1 Jar (5 Oz) Fire Roasted Red Peppers
  • 8 Oz Sliced Chicken Breast
  • 1 1/2 Oz Sliced Salami
  • 1 Cup Frozen or Fresh Kale, Chopped
  • 0.25 Cup Organic Pizza Sauce (Or Any Other Low Carb Alternative)
  • 3/4 Ricotta Cheese
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese To Taste

Begin this recipe by adding your olive oil, garlic, onion and dry spices (Oregano, Basil, Lite Salt and Pepper) in a medium sized pan, or in this case, a Wok.  Turn your  stove on to a medium to medium low heat.  Allow the garlic and onions time to sautee until soft.  By adding the dry spices now you allow time for their flavor to dissipate in your oil.  Slice your chicken in to small chunks or cubes and add it to the wok once your onions are mostly soft.  Add 1 tbsp of red wine vinegar at this point.  Increase the temperature to medium-high and cover allowing the chicken to cook until no pink is seen.  Slice your salami and roasted red peppers thin and add to your pan.  Add your Kale at this time as well.  Mix well and cover until your greens are cooked.  They should appear wilted but not a slimy green mess.  Take the pan off the heat.  Place the ricotta cheese in spoonful sized dollops around the top of your stir fry, cover, and allow it a few minutes to melt.   You can lightly disturb the cheese with a spoon to work it into the ingredients as well.  Dish 1/4 of the recipe on serving plates and add a drizzle of your pizza sauce and garnish with grated Parmesan Cheese.  This is optional but highly recommended.  Enjoy!

1/4 Recipe:  267 Calories, 18.4 G Fat, 19.7 G Protein, 5.7 G Carbs, 0.6 G Fiber (5.1 G Net Carbs)

Keto Tuscano Soup

With the snow coming down outside it’s time for a hearty recipe that warms you up from the inside out.  In my opinion the best foods to eat when the temperature drops below freezing are soups!  This recipe combines spinach and sausage in an Italian inspired recipe that is filling and delicious.  This recipe is adapted from LINDA’S LOW CARB MENUS & RECIPES.

Keto Tuscano Soup

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  • 1 lb Italian Sausage
  • 1 Small White Onion, Diced (2.5 Oz)
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 3 Cups Chicken Broth
  • 10 Oz Frozen Chopped Spinach, Thawed
  • 1/2 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • Morton Lite Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese

Remove the sausage from its casings, if necessary.  We use the kind of sausage that comes in a single package like Jimmy Dean.  Brown the sausage in a 4-Quart Soup Pot with Lid along with the onion and garlic.  You can drain fat if you desire but I feel it adds flavor and keeps the fat content of this soup higher.  Add the broth and drained spinach and bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer about 30 minutes. Add the cream and simmer a few minutes until the cream is heated.  Season to taste.  Sprinkle a little parmesan cheese over each serving.

This soup is delicious as a meal or as a side dish.  The calorie content is a bit higher than your traditional canned soups so keep that in mind as you track your macros.  Enjoy!

Per 3/4 Cup Serving: 366 Calories, 32g Fat, 15g Protein, 4g Carbohydrate, 2g Dietary Fiber, 2g Net Carbs

Simple Keto Pan Pizza

We’ve explored different keto friendly pizzas here at The Bacon Monologues and each has different qualities that make them appealing.  Keto Snack Pizzas have a thin and light crunch crust thanks to the tortilla crust.  The Almost Real Crust Keto Pizza is a full sized pizza with a nice doughy crust that is a great dinner option.  Both are great options for different occasions.  Sometimes you want a simple and filling option for one person.  That’s where the Simple Keto Pan Pizza comes in to play.  The crust is thick and fluffy like a personal pan pizza.  Check it out!

Simple Keto Pan Pizza

  • Servings: 1
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Crust Ingredients:

  • Two Large Eggs
  • Two Tbsp Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • One Heaping Tbsp Unflavored Psyllium Husk
  • One Tbsp Water
  • Lite Salt to Taste
  • One Tbsp Olive Oil

Toppings:

  • One Serving (1/4 Cup) Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • One Serving (1/4 Cup) Low Carb Pizza Sauce (Rao’s Homemade Marinara Sauce is a good choice.)
  • Anything else!  (Mushrooms, Pepperoni, Sausage Etc…)

Start by heating a tablespoon of olive oil in a small skillet to medium high heat.  Using an immersion hand blender mix your eggs, water, parmesan cheese, psyllium husk and salt very well.  You want to lift the immersion blender in and out of the mixture to blend some air into it.  This will help your crust be fluffier.  Remember the more bubbles the better!  It also helps to mix your “dough” in a container with high sides so you don’t make a mess.  Once the mixture is well blended pour it into your preheated skillet and try to spread it around in a nice circle.  This will be a little difficult because the psyllium husk rapidly absorbs the water and will thicken rather quickly.  I use a rubber spatula coated with a little cooking spray to accomplish this.  Cook for roughly 3 minutes each side or until it’s golden brown.

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Now set your oven to broil.  If your skillet is oven safe you can leave your crust in it.  If not transfer your crust to a pizza stone or a pan.  Place your pizza sauce, cheese and toppings on your crust.  Place it in the oven and watch closely.  Within 5 minutes or so your cheese will begin to bubble and you’re done!  Total time for this recipe is 10-12 minutes and it’s delicious!  Enjoy!

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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)

Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

Hello again!  It’s been awhile since I’ve updated any new recipes.  Life always seems to get in the way like that.  Soccer, crazy busy work schedules and traveling have taken up a large portion of our summer!  I wanted to get started again by throwing up a really simple recipe that tastes amazing!

Mashed potatoes are one of those foods that goes so well with any meat.  So naturally someone somewhere came up with a keto variation as a substitute.  (Those keto folks sure are inventive!)  Garlic Mashed Cauliflower is a great side dish!  Check it out!

Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

  • Servings: Varies
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • One Head of Cauliflower cut in to Florets
  • 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • One Clove Garlic, smashed
  • 1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon Cream Cheese
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt (Or Morton’s Lite Salt.  You may have to add more.)
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

First you need to steam your cauliflower.  There are many ways to do this but for us the simplest is to place the cauliflower into a medium pan with an inch of water, cover with a lid and simmer on medium low for around 10 minutes or until tender.  Drain well.

While the cauliflower is steaming place your olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat.  Add your smashed garlic and cook it, stirring often, until it is tender.  This takes about 2 minutes.

Transfer half the cauliflower to a food processor (We love our Ninja Professional Blender), cover and blend on high.  Add the remaining cauliflower a little at a time until they are creamy.  Blend in garlic/olive oil, parmesan cheese, cream cheese, salt, and black pepper.  It’s simple and delicious and we love it!  Enjoy!