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)

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)

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

 

 

Parmesan Chicken and Zucchini Noodles with Garlic Basil Marinara

When I started keto I missed pasta.  A lot.  As a self professed pasta-a-holic it was a dramatic change for me to give it up.  Now if you’ve been following along the daily recipe yesterday was important!  Yesterdays Garlic Basil Marinara will be used in today’s recipe – Parmesan Chicken and Zucchini Noodles.  For todays recipe you’ll need a veggie spiralizer. (You can order one here.  Paderno World Cuisine Spiral Vegetable Slicer) Zucchini noodles (aka, “Zoodles”) are a wonderful spaghetti substitute.  They provide that particular mouth feel that only spaghetti has with the wonderful flavor of being a vegetable!  When you top them with chicken and sauce you make a great keto chicken parmesan!  This recipe makes two servings.

Parmesan Chicken and Zucchini Noodles with Garlic Basil Marinara

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Moderate
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  • 6 Oz Chicken Breast Tenderloins
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 3 Tsp Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Medium Zucchini
  • Garlic Basil Marinara
  • Salt and Pepper To Taste
  • 1/2 Cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

To prepare the chicken place your chicken breasts in a skillet with 1 tbsp of olive oil.  Salt and pepper them now.  Cook on medium high heat until almost cooked through.  Sprinkle your Parmesan cheese evenly on the chicken breasts.  Turn the heat up slightly to the low end of high and flip the chicken over to sear the cheese.  Flip back over when chicken is completely cooked.

Zoodles are finicky to make.  There are several tricks I’ve learned that will help you the first time.  Cook them too long and they’re mush.  Don’t cook them long enough and the flavor is…off.  First you’ll want to wash your zucchini thoroughly and cut both ends off where the stem and flower were connected.  Load the spiralizer according to your particular brands directions.  This Paderno Spiral Vegetable Slicer is fairly simple to use. Spike the zuke on the handle where are the little plastic needles are and the other end centers on the hollow metal circle. This cores the zuke while you’re spinning it. I also find that while spiralizing you need to cut the zoodles off every couple turns or you can end up with some very long noodles making them difficult to cook and eat!

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From there I salt the noodles very heavily.  I mean heavy.  If you were to taste them your tongue would shrivel up from all the salt kind of heavy.  The reason for this is you want the salt to draw moisture out of your zucchini so that the cooked product retains some snap and doesn’t turn to mush.  I then place the bowl of salted noodles in the fridge for half an hour or so.  When you take them out strain them through a colander.  There will be copious amounts of water.  To cook them I use a nice wok. (T-fal Wok)  This allows me to toss the noodles so they cook evenly.  I add one tablespoon of olive oil to the wok and heat to medium high.  Place the noodles in the wok, salt and pepper them to taste and cover as best you can with a lid.  This will steam the vegetables a little bit first.  (You could also microwave them for a few minutes first.  It accomplishes the same goal.)  Then you have to drain them again.  By this point even more water will have cooked out of them.  I then turn the heat up.  Not all the way but somewhere in the neighborhood of high.  The noodles will be finished when you feel they are soft but have just a little bit of crunch left to them.

From there you split the zoodles in two on two plates, place your chicken on top, cover with a serving of marinara and 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese.  You can sprinkle extra grated parmesan cheese on top if you like!  All in all it’s a little bit of work but it satisfies that craving!  Enjoy!