Lets talk Breakfast…

Everything Keto Bagels.JPGAs a child we are always told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.  I grew up eating scrambled eggs, toast, french toast, pancakes, waffles and if we were really in a hurry a giant bowl of cereal.  As adults many of us just opt for the largest cup of coffee we can make and forego a traditional breakfast. When I started my keto journey I decided that I would also do a 16:8 intermittent fast each day. I did this because I was used to skipping breakfast so it wouldn’t be any different from a normal day for me. I also noticed that I was relying on my cup of coffee in the morning to keep me full until I had my first meal at 2 pm. So I loaded it with almond milk or heavy cream. For a while that kept me full until my meal. After a while I noticed that my weight was up and down the same 3 lbs or it just stayed the same. So I decided that I would try something different and eat 3 meals a day but continue to stay in my macro count. I also decided to give up coffee. (Insert shocked face here). YES I gave up my morning coffee. I’ll be honest…..that was NOT easy but after I got through the first few days I noticed how much better I felt and it really sunk in how much I was depending on coffee to get me through the day.

Since I didn’t have my morning caffeine jolt, it was tough getting out of bed in the morning to cook a full breakfast. I needed to find something that I could prep before hand and would be an easy grab and go breakfast. I started off with just eating hard-boiled eggs, half an avocado and maybe some bacon or sausage that I could just reheat. That got boring after a while so I took to my best friend Pinterest and came across this amazing everything keto bagel recipe! So I jumped in my car, drove to the store and got everything I needed to make these amazing round pieces of heaven. After I tried these bagels for the first time, I was immediately hooked and I now make these every Sunday for the week.

The recipe came from an amazing blogger and cookbook author Kyndra D. Holley or Peace, Love and Low Carb (https://peaceloveandlowcarb.com/). If you do not know her….you NEED to jump on your computer or phone right now and check it out! I purchased her Craveable Keto cookbook last week and I plan on trying every recipe in this book! So….here it is….the infamous Everything Keto Bagel Recipe!

Ingredients:

2 Cups blanched almond flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon italian seasoning (I omit this but that is just my preference)

3 large eggs

3 cups of shredded low moisture mozzarella cheese

5 tablespoons cream cheese

3 tablespoons Everything Bagel Seasoning (I get mine from Trader Joe’s)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a Slipmat.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the almond flour, baking powder, garlic powder, onion powder and the italian seasoning (if you chose to use it). Mix until well combined.
  3. Crack one of the eggs into a small bowl and fork whisk. This will be the egg wash for the top of the bagels.
  4. In a large microwave safe mixing bowl, combine the mozzarella cheese and cream cheese. Microwave for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Remove from the microwave and stir to combine. Return to the microwave for an additional minute. Mix until well combined.
  5. To the mixing bowl, add the remaining 2 eggs and the almond flour mixture. Mix until all ingredients are well incorporated. (I found that it is easier to mix with my hands once the cheese cools down a little). If the dough gets to stringy and unworkable, put it back into the microwave for 30 seconds to soften and continue mixing.
  6. Divide the dough into 6 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball.
  7. Gently press your finger into the center of each dough ball to form a ring. Stretch the ring to make a small hole in the center and form it into a bagel shape.
  8. Brush the top of each bagel with the egg wash and top with the everthing bagel seasoning.
  9. Bake on the middle rack for 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown.

Here is the link to the recipe as well: https://peaceloveandlowcarb.com/low-carb-keto-everything-bagels/

I’m telling you that you will not be sorry if you try these!! If you try these…..please let me know how you like them!!!

xoxo,

Jen

Lets talk about PIZZA!!!

Cali'Flour Pizza CrustsA few posts ago I mentioned that I was on the Ketogenic diet. Everyone keeps asking me whats one thing I miss the most….my answer is always PIZZA. Until now! I had the worst craving for pizza that I turned to my trusty friend the internet and searched and searched for hours for the best keto pizza recipe. I found a few that looked promising so I marched out to Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s to get all the ingredients needed. After hours in the kitchen I had successfully made 3 different pizza crusts all of which were absolutely GROSS!!!! I’m not sure if it was me or the recipes but I just couldn’t handle the taste and how soggy these crusts were. I’m a crispy crust kind of girl. So my search continued.

One day I was just mindlessly flipping through my FaceBook feed when I came across one of those pesky sponsored ads for the newest health food craze but this one caught my attention because it was for a pizza crust. I immediately checked it out. When I opened up their website and clicked on the variety starter pack…..I had instant sticker shock!! These crusts are on the more expense side so I was very hesitant to buy these at first. The more and more I thought about it…..did I really want to spend $40 on 6 pizza crusts that were probably the size of my hand? Fast forward about 10 minutes and the answer was YES!!!!!!

So let me tell you about the brand. Cali’Flour is a California-based company who has perfected the cauliflower crust! Accordingly to their website (https://www.califlourfoods.com/), the owner was diagnosed with lupus and knew she was going to need to make some changes in her diet to keep her autoimmune disease in check. That was when Calif’Flour foods was birthed! I’m so thankful that she had the courage to develop this product and share it with the world because this has been a game changer for me!

So let’s get down to the ingredients and the Nutritional Facts! I ordered the variety pack where I got 2 Original Italian, 2 Spicy Jalapeno and 2 Sweet Red Pepper Crusts. Below are the ingredients for each crust:

Original Italian: Fresh Cauliflower, Mozzarella (Whole Milk, Enzymes, Cheese Culture, Salt), Egg Whites, Basil, Garlic, Italian Spice (Basil, Marjoram, Oregano, Thyme, Rosemary and Parsley).

Spicy Jalapeno: Fresh Cauliflower, Mozzarella (Whole Milk, Enzymes, Cheese Culture, Salt), Egg Whites, Jalapeno, Garlic and Red Chili Flakes

Sweet Red Pepper: Fresh Cauliflower, Mozzarella (Whole Milk, Enzymes, Cheese Culture, Salt), Roasted Garlic and Red Pepper Seasoning (Garlic, Red Bell Peppers, Salt, Roasted Garlic, Red Pepper, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor of Turmeric and Annatto) (Natural Flavor and Color).

Below are the Nutritional Facts label for their Crust and yes you are reading that correct….only 1g of carbs for a third of the crust!!! This is why I don’t feel guilty when I eat the whole thing!!!

Cali

The crusts are easily prepared as well! So if you order these online, you can order the starter pack that comes with a special pan that they recommend. I was cheap and decided to forgo the pack with the pan. So I literally just open the crust and place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. I pop it into a 400 degree oven for about 10 minutes. I let the crust cool for a good 10 to 12 minutes before I top the pizza with my favorite toppings. I love topping my pizza with the Rao’s pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, pepperoni and banana pepper rings. Once my pizza is carefully crafted, I pop it back into the oven for about 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted. The edges of this crust will be dark and super crispy but overall the taste is AMAZING!! I highly recommend the Sweet Bell Pepper crust as that is my favorite but all three crusts are amazing!!! I will say the jalapeno crust baked by itself with some cheese dipped in some ranch dressing is a great snack!! That’s just how versatile these crusts are! You can easily top them or eat them by themselves because the taste is just that amazing!

If you decide to purchase these…..please share with me your favorite flavor and what you top your pizza with!!! Thanks for reading!!

xoxo,

Jen

Eat the pizza!!

PizzaSo…this weekend didn’t go so well for me and Keto. Specifically Sunday. For the past few weeks my husband and I haven’t really had the chance to really spend much time together. Sundays are normally our day to hang out together whether it be date night or just chilling in bed together all day. Well since we haven’t had a Sunday together in about 4 weeks and we’ve both been spending a lot of time away from home we decided that it would be a lazy Sunday where we didn’t leave bed. A day of nothing is exactly what I needed…..except for I had to prepare all of our meals with nothing in the house. We normally do our grocery shopping on Sunday’s. So I had a VERY tough decision….do I go to the store or do I just hang with my husband all day? It didn’t take me very long to make the decision to stay at home with hubby. Luckily I’m doing the intermittent fasting thing so my first meal wasn’t until 12pm anyway and hubby likes to sleep in until about 11 or 11:30 on the days he doesn’t work. When lunch time rolled around I went in search of something that I could make that was Keto friendly. Luckily I still had a dozen of eggs and some bacon. So for lunch we had scrambled eggs with coconut oil, salt and pepper and bacon.

We were both satisfied for a few hours and then the munchies started to take over. I settled for some almonds and a sugar free jello cup….but an hour later I was hungry again. I had nothing to make for dinner because everything was frozen. Hubby suggested pizza….so I said lets order from Domino’s because they have salads….then we started to order and one thing lead to another.  Hubby ordered a Philly cheese steak pizza and the brownie cookie for dessert. I ordered a salad and some wings….completely forgetting that their wings are breaded. Strike 1 for Jen! When the food arrived, the smell of melted cheese, green bell peppers and steak filled the entire room as if it was a sinking ship filling with water. I fought my urge to have a slice and settled for my salad and my wings (which I was already beating myself up over).

Hubby and I decided to watch Son-In-Law with Pauly shore and about 30 minutes in Hubby starts snoring…..the devil on my shoulder seemed to be getting louder and louder. “One piece wont kill you” it kept saying over and over again until I finally caved…….I didn’t eat one but two slices of pizza and then I couldn’t stop. I had two pieces of the brownie cookie too!! I felt so defeated and wanted to sit there and feel terrible about myself but something told me to reach out to a friend who is also doing the Keto diet. She has been my rock through this whole thing and has kept me sane. I told her all about my “cheat day” and what she said to me has given me a whole new outlook on my “accidents”. She said to me: “Its life….get back on track tomorrow. It can’t be all consuming, life has to happen and that includes pizza.” The more and more I thought about it….shes totally right! Being so strict on myself and not enjoying life was just setting me up to fail. I need to enjoy my life and if I want a slice of pizza I should have it because everything is “OK” in moderation. Moral of this story is….DO not beat yourself up for having a slice of pizza, a slice of cake or a scoop of ice cream. We are all human, we are going to make mistakes…..what we do to recover from them is what really counts. Until next time!

xoxo,

Jen

Christmas Cookie Temptations

Gingerbread CookiesSo…..I’m sure that by now you have noticed that Christmas is right around the corner. As if all the lights, Christmas music and Christmas tree vendors didn’t give it away! All joking aside….Holidays are definitely the time to spend some quality time with family. I’m not sure about your family but with my family that involves FOOD and lots of it…specifically COOKIES. I grew up in a household where my mom loved to bake Christmas cookies and over the years watching and helping her, I too fell in love with baking. I will bake from the moment I wake up to the time I go to bed on the weekends. Baking for me started out as something my mom and I could share but it soon turned into a stress reliever for me. There is just something about following a recipe and measuring everything out to the exact measurement that is just so satisfying.

Obviously being around all of that sugar and amazingness can cause temptation to rear its evil head. Dealing with that constant temptation isn’t an easy task. I would love to say that I have the worlds strongest will power but let’s be honest……I’m weak! SOOOOOO WEAK! I refuse to be that person who goes through the holidays depriving myself to the point where I dread the holidays. So yes….I will have a cookie or two but never three……never (insert sarcastic eye roll here). So how do I keep myself from eating the 20 dozen cookies I just baked….I give them away. I will keep a few dozen for me and the hubby to enjoy because you can enjoy all things in moderation which I have had to teach myself. Hubby however…..I can’t control him! He is known as the cookie monster in our home.

I hope that everyone enjoys the holidays and spending some quality time with their families.

XOXO,

Jen

My Go To Recipes

Hey everyone! So everyone says that a healthy diet is the most important thing when you are trying to lose weight. This was and still is a big thing for me because I am all about convenience especially when it comes to lunch. I’m sure many of you can relate when I say that getting 5 minutes to eat at work on any given day is a win. I’ve been super swamped at work lately…short staffed, new year and a ton of projects to prepare for. So meal planning and prepping have been my new best friend. Prepping on Sundays for my lunches and dinners for that week has kept me on track and kept me from making some major mistakes. Below are some of my recent go to receipes. I hope that you enjoy them! 

My first go to meal is a Grilled Chicken Breast with side salad dressed with my homemade Italian dressing. This is one of the easiest meals you can prep. 

Season your chicken with a low sodium seasoning of your choice and grill until done. My favorite is the Mrs. Dash Fiesta seasoning. Toss spinach and roman lettuce together with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and red onions. Dress your salad with the homemade Italian dressing. 

My favorite Italian dressing recipe is:

Ingredients:

1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

1 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tbsp garlic powder

1 tbsp onion powder

1 tbsp italian herb

1 tsp Dijon mustard (no sugar added)

1 tsp dried basil

1/2 tsp ground black pepper 

1/4 tsp sea salt

Directions:

1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend very well. 

2. Transfer dressing to a container and keep in the fridge for up to 2 months. 

3. Shake well and serve.

NOTE: Best to let it sit for a day or so to allow the herbs to infuse in the oil and vinegar. 
Greek Turkey Burgers topped with Tzatziki sauce and a Tomato and Cucumber salad

This is a favorite of mine and hubbies! The office is usually pretty jealous when I make these as well because the office normally smells amazing when I reheat them! 

Recipe is super easy as well:

Ingredients:

3/4 cup grated zucchini (squeezed to remove as much water as possible)

1 1/2 lbs lean ground turkey

2 cloves of garlic minced

1/4 cup of diced red onion

1 Tbsp dried oregano

3/4 tsp sea salt

3/4 tsp black pepper

1/3 cup Feta Cheese, crumbled

1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix well by hand. 

2. Divid into 6 Raquel patties. 

3. Cooke burgers on medium heat, about 5 minutes per side or until no longer pink in the middle. 

4. Top with tzatziki sauce and serve with your side. I chose a tomato, cumber and red onion salad dressed with my homemade Italian dressing (receipe listed above). 

You will have to forgive me…I forgot to snap a picture of this final receipe but this recipe has saved me so much time! This is called the 4 ingredient slow cooker salsa verde chicken! 

Ingredients:

6 Bonless, skinless chicken breast

2 Cups salsa verde

1 Bottle of beer (light of course!)

2 teaspoons ground cumin

Directions:

1. Add chicken to the slow cooker. Top with salsa verde and beer, and sprinkle with cumin and season with a few pinches of salt and pepper. 

2. Coat chicken by turning chicken over.

3. Cooke for 3 to 4 hours on high heat or 7 to 8 hours on low heat. 

4. Once chicken is done, remove from slowe cooker shred with two forks and place back in the slow cooker to toss with the sauce. 

NOTE: Store in the refrigerator in an air tight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months. 

This chicken is great for tacos or burrito bowls or even to eat on a salad. Great for lunch or dinner! 

I hope that you all enjoyed these recipes! Let me know if you try any of them! If you enjoyed this post and wish to see more like this let me know!

Just a personal update…..I’ve lost a few more pounds and just that much closer to my goal!! Stay strong and keep moving everyone!

XoXo,

Jen