Simple Pan Fried Chicken Thighs – Keto Friendly

Simple Pan Fried Chicken Thighs - Low Carb Keto - It's all in the technique

This is a very simple recipe for pan fried chicken thighs, but if you learn the following technique, you will always have great results. Don’t fuss with your protein when cooktop frying! Every time you flip protein in the pan or test it with a fork, you are allowing luscious juices to escape.

Technique for Pan Fried Chicken Thighs

Heat 2 tbsps of unrefined coconut oil in a cast iron pan until the oil is hot but not smoking.
In the meanwhile, generously salt and season 2 chicken thighs, with skin on and bone in.

Gently place the chicken thighs skin-side down in the pan. The oil should lightly sizzle at this point.
Place a splatter guard over the pan.

Lower the heat to the low side of medium

Do not move the chicken for 15 minutes!
Don’t be tempted to move the chicken. You want to develop a crust.
Shift the pan if you have an uneven cooking surface such as an old style burner but don’t shift the chicken itself.

Gently turn the chicken thighs over at 15 minutes.
Ooooh in delight at the sight of awesome golden-brown crispy skin

Fry for another 10-15 minutes (without touching the chicken!) until juices come clear.
Remove the chicken thighs from the pan, drain on paper towel
Serve with a huge side of buttered steamed broccoli

Nutritional Value
If oil is hot enough, not much soaks into the chicken so weigh your chicken!
Weigh the chicken once it is cooked. Weigh the bones and subtract that weight from the previous weight. Calculate your macros based on ‘dark meat, boneless, skin on.’ You will have a more accurate weight.

Tips:
Why Coconut oil? It has a higher smoke temperature – meaning you can safely fry things in it at a higher heat without the oil becoming toxic. It also does an amazing job at crisping chicken.
IF you are using a different type of protein, adjust frying times. Pork chops and steak will cook much faster. The important thing is, don’t play with the meat once it is in the pan!

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Lazy Pulled BBQ Chicken – Keto Style – Low Carb

I came up with this BBQ Chicken recipe when I needed to find a way to add fat to a bag of skinless, boneless chicken breasts I had bought before I went Keto. I now use mostly chicken thighs and legs with skin. If I do use chicken breasts, it’s usually in a recipe such as this.

I placed the contents of a big bag of Costco frozen seasoned chicken breasts in my slow cooker along with the following:
One onion cut in half. Unpeeled but washed well.
2 whole carrots, scrubbed, cut in half.
3 stalks celery, washed, left whole.
1/2 cup Organic chicken broth.

Cook in slow cooker on high for 3 – 5 hours

Once the chicken breasts are cooked through, discarded the veggies.
Drain the broth into air tight container. Use within 2-3 days.
Once the chicken is cool enough to touch, shred it by using two forks.
Weigh 100g (3.5 oz) servings and place in zip-lock bags. Freeze until needed

Make sure to read the nutritional label on the frozen chicken breast bag – some frozen breasts have sugar added.

Now on to the Lazy BBQ Chicken Recipe!

Ingredients:
1 heaping tsp Zero Carb BBQ dry spice mix
1/4 tsp Garlic Powder
1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper (Optional)
2 tbsp mayonnaise (not low-fat)
1 green onion (Scallion) chopped fine
3 tbsp low carb ketchup
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
A few drops of stevia or favourite sweetener
Salt/Pepper to taste
Hot sauce to taste – Hidden sugar alert! Read labels well!
100g Shredded chicken
45g (1.5 oz) Shredded Cheddar Cheese divided into two equal portions

Nutritional Values for full Keto Style Pulled BBQ Chicken recipe:
Calories 533
Protein 42g
Carb (Net) 6g
Fat 40g

Directions:
Mix everything together, except for 1/2 the cheese.
The mixture should be moist and should hold together somewhat.
Add more mayo or a bit of softened cream cheese if need be to ensure it holds together.
Allow the flavours to blend by putting in the fridge for about 1/2 hour or so.
At that point, adjust the seasoning to your liking.

Preheat oven to 400F

Place silicone sheet on a baking sheet

Place the chicken mixture on the silicone sheet. Make a heaping mound, then flatten slightly but don’t spread it out too much. Top with remaining cheese. Bake about 15 – 20 minutes until the cheese is bubbly and the chicken mixture is warmed through.

Serve with large romaine lettuce leaves; the leaves can be used as wraps.

1 large serving (entree) or 2 appetizers/snacks

Items used:
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©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Keto and Stress. Finding Healthy Ways to Bring Comfort

Face it, we all experience stress to some extent. We need to have a game plan on how to incorporate Keto into those times of stress so we can eat healthily and support our bodies.

In times of stress, it can be tempting to go to our old comfort standbys. However, indulging in those standbys are a sure road to keto-flu and feeling bloated.There comes a time when you realise that Keto is not a ‘diet’ it’s a lifestyle. I am currently in an incredibly stressful season involving circumstances far beyond my control. This season will eventually pass, but as a result of the stress, I’ve gained two or three pounds. Those pounds are not a result of overeating or cheating. I am in a stall. My body is ‘protect’ mode. I am still eating Keto, keeping carbs down and carrying on. This way of life has to fit into my life, during times of calm and times of stress, or it isn’t going to work. Keto living is my new normal. I am thankful for the natural appetite control that is built into Keto. I’ve not been seriously tempted to cave into old comfort food patterns.

Here are a few articles and videos I found that discusses what our bodies do in times of stress and why weight loss is temporarily stalled at such times.

A simple explanation: What stress does to Ketosis
Stress may add bite to appetite in women: a laboratory study of stress-induced cortisol and eating behaviour
Understanding how grief affects the body
Youtube Video – How stress affects Keto-adaption.
Youtube video -Adrenal Gland Fatigue – Stress and Keto

So how to manage stress?

I am no expert. Therefore, I am sharing what has been helpful to me. It may not be helpful to you.

  1. Rest: If you are experiencing difficulty in sleeping, try melatonin. It either works for you or it doesn’t. There is no middle ground.An hour before you go to bed, have an Epsom Salt bath in warm but not overly hot water. Two cups of Epsom salt will help relax your body, as your skin absorbs the magnesium in the salts. Take a magnesium supplement, if you are not already doing so.
  2. Download a blue light filter for your smartphone/tablet if you use it to read from at night. The blue light from the screen will keep you awake and will disturb REM sleep. Also consider purchasing blue-light blocking computer glasses, if you use your computer after 5 P.M.
  3. Going through a personal crisis or an season of high stress? Keto on! Here are some tips to help you through.

  4. Drink at least 64 ounces of water a day. Reduce caffeine. For every ounce of coffee that you drink, drink double that amount in noncaffeinated liquids.
  5. Make playlists of your favourite comfort songs and listen to them often
  6. Avoid violence-ridden or stress-filled movies, television, and games.
  7. Watch silly comedies
  8. If you can exercise, do so. However, now is not the time to begin a serious weight training regiment. Now is the time for moderate exercise. Go easy.
  9. Talk to a friend about what is going on. Yes, guys, I know that’s hard to do, but do it anyhow.
  10. I am a Christian, and I find prayer to be extremely helpful. However, don’t make your prayer time a time of begging God to do something. Relax and remind yourself that God is good and He is there for you.
  11. Rid your kitchen of temptations even the healthy ones if you are prone to binging. If chocolate bars were your go-to comfort food in the past, protein bars might try to take their place. Bingeing on anything to the point of excess is not a good plan.
    Look for keto-friendly snack items that are super simple to prepare. Pepperoni sticks, cheese sticks, pork rinds. Grape tomatoes, non-sweetened pickles, cucumber slices with ranch dressing.
    Portion out nuts into individual servings and place them in snack-sized ziplock bags.
    If you are in the US, Biglow Girl Guide Thin Mint Herbal tea has zero calories and tastes fantastic.
    85% dark chocolate. One square should satisfy a serious craving for sweets.
  12. Stick to your keto diet plan. High fat, moderate protein, low carbs. This is your life now, and life does not stop just because of stress.
  13. Search google for just about any childhood comfort food you love, and you should find a keto-friendly adaptation. Macaroni and Cheese, Meatloaf, grilled cheese sandwiches, tomato soup, chili, spaghetti; they all have keto or low carb versions all over the ‘net. You can find a recipe for just about any cake, cookie or sweet that has been adapted for low-carb diets as well.
  14. Remember, it’s not a good idea to have alternative sweetener treats every day, even if they are completely natural. These should be occasional treats and not daily rewards. You turned to Keto because sugary carbs were killing you. You need to find new healthy ways to comfort yourself that do not surround carbs or carb alternative foods.
  15. Be kind to yourself! Ditch the scale until your crisis is over. If you cheat on your eating plan, figure out what triggered the cheat and find an alternative way to have that need met. Don’t beat yourself up!

©2016 Katherine Walden

Keto Friendly Kale, Broccoli, and Brussel Sprouts Salad

Kale, Broccoli, and Brussel Sprouts Salad. This is great for potlucks. Keto Friendly, full of vitamins, fibre, and micronutrients.

To say I am not a fan of cooked kale in any form is an understatement. However, I love that packaged Sweet Kale Salad Kit that is sold at Costco and most supermarkets across Canada. The problem with that salad mix is that the enclosed dressing is full of sugar. The dried cranberries in the topping don’t help matters much either. But I have a hankering for this salad. What’s a girl to do? She experiments, of course.

Brussel sprouts may have a few more carbs than some Keto vegetables but they are nutrient rich and a few go a long way as far as flavour goes. This salad will serve at least 8. Bring it to a potluck. No one will know it’s Keto. Hey, maybe your favourite Uncle George will eat his veggies this way, then again, probably not! Baby steps, people, baby steps. We can’t convert the world to the wonders of raw kale at once. One person at a time. This salad is high in fiber, rich in vitamins, and a good source of micronutrients. If you add chia seeds to the dressing, not only will they help thicken the dressing, they will add omega 3 fats!

I strongly suggest you use a food processor or a mandolin for this recipe unless you have amazing knife skills. The key to this salad is to shred the broccoli and Brussel sprouts. I use a food processor as my ER doctor said he didn’t want to stitch me up ‘again’ after my last incident with a mandolin. Don’t ask.

I also suggest that you use fully grown kale. The fully grown kale stands up well with the other vegetables. You can make this salad a day in advance of serving if you don’t use baby kale. It’s great to take to work! Just make sure to remove the woody stem and the centre stalk of each kale leaf. Your fibre intake is more than covered by the broccoli and Brussel sprouts!

I recently discovered VitaFiber, a high fibre sugar substitute that is sold online and in some low-carb grocery outlets. It is not as sweet as sugar but it has no aftertaste in contrast to other sweeteners. It is also very high in fibre. Feel free to replace VitaFiber with your favourite sweetener, of course. If you aren’t following a Keto lifestyle, maple syrup would be awesome in the dressing.

Mix the dressing first, and set it in the fridge so the flavours can blend, especially if you add chia seeds.

I suggest using an immersion blender for the dressing.

Kale, Broccoli and Brussel Sprouts Salad

Dressing Ingredients:
2 Tbsp VitaFiber or sweeten to your liking with your favourite sweetener.
2 Tbsp  grainy Dijon mustard
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tsp Chia Seeds (Optional)
Place all the above in blender cup, then add:
1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Emulsify until creamy.
This dressing will keep in an airtight bottle in the fridge for a few days.

Salad Ingredients:
3 cups regular kale with the stalk removed as well as the centre tough vein of the leaf removed. Tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces.
3 cups shredded or shaved fresh brussels sprouts, about 18.  It all depends on the size of the sprout.
3 cups shredded or shaved fresh broccoli. Peel the stem and use it! It is delicious in this salad
1.5 cups of thinly sliced red or green cabbage

Pour enough of the dressing to coat but not drown the salad ingredients. Toss, then chill for at least four hours, or overnight.

Nutritional Value – 1 Serving. Approximately 1 cup or 150g
Calories: 205
Fat: 16.10g
Carb (Net) 7.96g
Protein 3.78g

Optional toppings: (Not included in nutritional count)
Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, bacon bits.
Don’t toss in the seeds or bacon bits until moments before serving or else they will become soggy.

For more protein, add sliced hard-boiled eggs.

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Keto Style Pork Chops Smothered in Mushroom Sauce

Keto Style Pork Chops Smothered In Mushroom Sauce - Quick and Easy, A classic recipe modified for low carb lifestyle

I LOVE pork chops, and I LOVE Mushrooms. When I realised I could have both AND lose weight, I almost cried.

I grew up during the time where every mother had several cans of Cream of Mushroom soup in their pantry. The thick soup made for smooth sauces over meatloaf and pork chops and served as the base for chicken and rice casseroles.  Perhaps that’s why I look at Cream of Mushroom as a base for comfort food and not for a bowl of soup!

I searched for an easy Cream of Mushroom recipe that was actually low carb as well as Keto friendly, and I came up empty.Each half a cup DILUTED serving of the canned soup has 10 carbs! As we are using the undiluted soup in recipes, that means it’s packed with carbs. And so began yet another experiment.  I have to say; I prefer the taste of this recipe over the original canned soup!

Keto Pork Chop and Mushroom Sauce Recipe

Pork Chop Ingredients:
2 pork chops bone in
1 tbsp coconut oil
Salt and Pepper

Pork Chop Directions:
Salt and pepper the pork chops generously. Use bone-in pork chops for better flavour
Heat cast iron pan, add coconut oil and allow the oil to melt completely and to come to a high temperature.
The pork chops should sizzle when you put them in the pan. Lower heat to medium-high.
Depending on the thickness, the chops should only take about 5 minutes on each side. You want the pink to be gone but don’t overcook!
Remove from pan, do not throw away the pan drippings, you will need them for the sauce.

Tip: You need to calculate the calorie/proteins and fat as no pork chop weighs the same. An online friend passed on this tip to me, weigh the chops before cooking. Then deduct the weight of the bone from that measurement when you are finished eating. You will be able to measure proteins and fat more accurately. List in your food diary as a boneless pork chop. I use the same measuring technique for measuring chicken legs and thighs.  For example: 256g raw chops (bone in) – 56g bone weight =200g boneless pork chop

Mushroom Sauce Ingredients:
2 tbsp butter
120g sliced mushrooms
2 finely diced garlic cloves
1 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
2 tbsp sour cream
1 tsp grainy Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste

Mushroom Sauce Instructions
Add butter to the same pan the pork chops were fried in. Make sure the pan is not too hot.
Scrape all the drippings up from the bottom of the pan.
Saute mushrooms and garlic until mushrooms are golden brown in colour. This should take about 5 – 10 minutes.
Pour cream, cheese and the Dijon mustard over the mushrooms.
Add salt and pepper
Stir on medium heat, allowing the sauce to bubble as you stir. Reduce until the sauce thickens.

Mushroom Sauce Yield (4 Servings) 834 Calories Fat 84g Protein 12.80 Carbs (Net) 12.5g
Single serving 209 Calories Fat 21g Protein 3.2g Carbs (Net) 3.13g

Pour 1/4 of the reduced sauce over the chops. Serve with steamed broccoli, kale or spinach.

Tip: Invest in good cast iron frying pans. With proper care, they are non-stick and they serve you well for decades. I currently am using a 10-inch pan my grandfather used in the 1920s!

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Keto Salmon or Tuna Salad With Cheese Crisps

Keto Friendly, Budget Conscious Salmon or Tuna Salad with Cheese Crisps. Very simple to make!

Did I mention I live on a pretty tight budget? Canned fish is the only way I can afford to eat fish. This Salmon or Tuna Salad is yummy and colourful, full of protein, and full of heart-healthy Omega-3 Fats. I try to have two meals a week featuring fish.

The cheese crisps are so simple to make, and they taste like the delicious crispy, cheesy bits on pizza or casseroles that everyone fights over!

The secret to a good tuna or salmon salad is to allow the flavours get to know one another before tossing them on lettuce leafs. Don’t rush the process. I make this a good hour ahead of meal time and assemble it right before serving. I prefer salmon over tuna salad, but you can use either fish in this recipe. As this salad is packed with protein and healthy fat, it should be considered a main meal of the day.

Keto Salmon or Tuna Salad with Cheese Crisps

Drained Wild-caught Tuna Fish or Salmon (212 g)
2 tbsp Mayonnaise (not low fat)
2 tsp full-fat sour cream if needed
1 tsp onion flakes
1/2 tsp Mrs Dash original
salt and pepper to taste
Mix the above and let sit in your fridge for at least 15 minutes to give the flavours a chance to blend.

Serve on a bed of 100g of washed, hand-torn romaine lettuce, with 20g of bell pepper, thinly sliced, Decorate with seven grape tomatoes and serve with Cheese Crisps. This salad is very low carb as long as you go easy on the tomatoes! One substantial serving

Nutritional Value for the Tuna Salad version, without crisps:
Calories: 525
Fat: 28g
Protein 57.2
Net Carb 7.1

Cheese Crisps:
Preheat oven to 350F
Line a baking sheet with either a silicone baking sheet or parchment paper or tin foil (spray foil with a bit of Pam)

Ingredients:
Shredded cheddar cheese or a mixture of cheddar and any hard cheese that can be shredded.

Don’t buy pre-shredded cheese if you are strict Keto. They add stuff to the shredded cheese to keep it from sticking together

Place one tbsp of shredded cheese at a time of the cheese mixture on your baking sheet.
Space well apart as this will spread.

Bake for about 10-15 minutes max, but watch your oven! The crisps should be golden brown all over, and the edges should be dark brown. Remove the sheet from oven. If there is a lot of grease on the crisps, blot it off with a paper towel. Carefully slide the cheese crisps onto a plate and allow them to cool. Store in an airtight container. These have a shelf life for about 3-4 days. They never last that long as they are addictive!

Nutritional Value varies depending on the cheese you use. Weigh the cheese before baking and use that weight as your guide to looking up the nutritional value.

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Keto Cozy Turmeric Bullet Proof Coffee Or Tea

A warm and cosy Keto Turmeric Coffee or tea. Spicy, evocative of Christmas, anti-inflammatory and Keto friendly. Low Carb.

Winter arrived precisely at 2:45 PM on December 4, 2016. Never mind what the calendar said! After church, I decided to make a quick trip up to my local City Market to grab a few things for a Keto Friendly Taco Salad. I’ll post a recipe for that later on! I left behind a bright, sunny and relatively warm day as I entered the store. When I exited the store, a mere 10 minutes later, the weather had turned. The sky was grey; the cold wind howled, and the air felt like snow.

I assumed the traditional winter turtle-like position known by all Canadians; Canadians living outside of Vancouver, that is. Shoulders hunched so my coat’s collar could rise, head scrunched down to take advantage of the collar’s warmth. I grabbed my mitts from my purse. No Canadian would go out in December without a pair of gloves stashed in a coat pocket or a purse! I turned the speed up on my power chair and scooted home as fast as I could. All that was on my mind was my version of Spicy Bullet Proof tea, AKA Cozy Turmeric Coffee (or tea).

When using <a href=Turmeric, always add a pinch of black pepper. Pepper releases the full nutritional benefits of this powerful anti-inflammatory spice.” width=”233″ height=”155″ data-pin-nopin=”true” />I had read that it is probably best for ladies to skip the butter in  Bullet Proof Coffee as the fats in coconut oil and the natural hormones in butter send confusing signals to our hormonal balances. As I was retaining water a few days earlier and I was in a brief stall in my Keto Journey, I decided to do some ‘experimenting’ – call me a mad scientist.

A pinch of black pepper releases turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties; I was feeling a little bit achy that morning.

Turmeric has MANY other health benefits, but I don’t like it plain, so I spice it up to take the edge of the raw earthiness.

As soon as I arrived home, I made this recipe using a robust black tea:

Cozy Keto Friendly Turmeric Coffee or Tea Ingredients:

2 cups STRONG coffee or 2 cups strong black tea
2 tbsp unrefined, virgin coconut oil (start off with one tbsp if you aren’t used to coconut oil)
A pinch of black pepper
1 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp pumpkin spice mix
1/2 tsp ginger powder
Stevia (or your favourite sweetener) to taste

KetoTurmeric Coffee or Tea will warm you on a cold winter day from the inside out and take the stiffness out of your joints ALL the ingredients in an immersion-friendly container such as a 4 cup Pyrex measuring cup. Blend until creamy. You could add a bit of heavy cream or full-fat coconut milk if you fancy a bit of froth. Do not attempt to mix this in a coffee mug or a travel mug! Turmeric stains clothing immediately, and it is very hard to remove the stain!

I drink this from a Contigo Travel Mug AKA Adult Sippy Cup. I seriously cannot live without my Contigo mug. As I am disabled, I am pretty klutzy. It was either a travel mug or stock in laundry soap!

Calories 264 Carbs (Net) 2.2 g Protein 1 g Fat 27.3

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Can a Disabled Person Lose Weight with a Keto Diet?

Is it possible for a disabled person to lose weight and be more healthy by following a keto diet? This person living with Charcot Marie Tooth Disease and Gastroparesis and who had gallbladder surgery believes so!

A little about me.
I am a disabled person living with a neuromuscular disease called Charcot Marie Tooth Disease (CMT). I have some of the rarer complications than many individuals who live with this genetic disease. I use a cane, walker, or power-chair depending on the weather conditions or activity I will be participating in. I also know I must lose weight if I am to continue to remain mobile.

I have extremely poor balance, and since birth I have experienced a slow progression of the loss of strength in my muscles, starting from the feet upwards and the hands upwards. This loss of muscle strength is due to my peripheral nervous system no longer functioning the way it was created to do. I wear orthopedic boots and braces whenever I leave my home.

I also have Gastroparesis which is a condition in which the spontaneous movement of the muscles (motility) in your stomach does not function normally. This form of Gastroparesis is probably related to CMT as my esophagus’ ability to squeeze food down to the gullet is affected as well as a lack of coordination in my swallowing mechanism. I don’t have any of the severe pain that many people have with these conditions. Thank goodness!

I underwent gallbladder surgery over 25 years ago, resulting in a minuscule bile production.  Bile is what our bodies use to help break down fat during digestion.

As a disabled person, I realized that if I wanted to continue to be able to stand and walk, I needed to find a safe way to ensure I lose weight gradually. I began researched Ketosis Dieting after my friends and relatives lost a significant amount of weight on the Keto Diet. They saw a marked improvement in their health.

When I researched the Keto Diet lifestyle, I discovered that this diet is often suggested to those with neurological disorders. About ten years ago, I was able to lose weight, over 130 pounds in all, but I did so in not the smartest of ways. By extreme dieting and starving myself, I dropped the weight but didn’t learn the life skills to keep the weight off. I found by following a Keto Diet; you learn how to maintain a low-carb lifestyle once you lose the weight you wish to lose.

Here are a few things I have discovered during the first nine weeks of living a Keto Diet Lifestyle. I have lost almost 18 lbs, and I’ve dropped a pant size. I have significantly more stamina while standing and working in my kitchen. At the beginning of this diet, I would have to sit every few minute due to the difficulty I have in keeping my balance while doing mundane tasks. I now only have to sit if I need to write something down or read a recipe. Yes, I want to lose weight, but I also want to live as active a lifestyle as I can.

Here are a few other things I have learned about myself in these nine weeks.

What works for ME and what doesn’t work for ME might not work for YOU.

First what works:

1. I remind myself to EAT MORE FAT. Fat in itself does not make me fat. It helps me feel satisfied. Feeling satisfied cuts my cravings, helping me to lose weight. Unhealthy fats such as oils that are chemically altered (trans fats) are fats I avoid. I use Unrefined Virgin Coconut Oil, Olive Oil, Cacao Butter, Animal Fats, and Butter as my main oils. I use dairy fats, such as heavy cream and cream cheese, in moderation.

2. I am forgetting about worrying about calorie deficits for now. Within two weeks of this diet, my body self-regulated and now tells me when I have had enough. I have a lot of weight to lose (80lbs at this point). When I get closer to my goal, then I will need to pull in the reins, but for now, I am not going to worry. I am by no means eating anywhere near what I used to eat in a day! I’m feeling quite satisfied at the end of every day. I made a self-imposed rule that my kitchen closes for business, outside of water, at 7:00 PM each evening. I have not yet been tempted to break that rule.

I eat under 20g of net carbs a day; I eat a moderate amount of protein a day as well. I used this calculator to figure out my daily’macros.’ Macros are basically the amount of fat/protein/carbs that are recommended I consume each day. The Keto Diet dictates that 20g of carbs a day helps your body burn the fat you are storing. Too MUCH protein can cause your body to convert that extra protein to glucose which will stall weight loss as well. I have learned my digital food scale is my best friend for meal prep. Who knew grams were so much easier to calculate than cup measurements?

Net Carbs –  Look at all packaging of anything that goes in your mouth. By law, they have to list the carbs and/or sugar.  Take that number per serving (and serving sizes are always ridiculously small on any package. They are always way less than the average person would consider ‘a serving’.

Subtract any fibre listed from that first number. That is your net carb. You are allowed 20 net carbs per day for this diet to work.  If you go over that, the high-fat diet will just make you fatter. But sugars, both natural and added, is what made me fat. Cutting ALL grains (rice, wheat, oats, barley, quinoa, etc etc)  and starchy root vegetables dramatically made the difference.

3. I try to eat or drink most of my fat by mid-afternoon, and I have a lighter meal for my last meal.

4. I drink at least 80 oz of water throughout the day, and I don’t count coffee as a liquid.

5. I keep my carbs down to about 15g-20g net per day. I don’t freak out if I go up to 22g a day. It won’t throw me out of ketosis. Net carbs are calculated by just subtracting the fibre carbs from food from the gross carbs listed in the nutritional value of anything you consume. I use Cronometer an excellent online program that also has apps for IOS or Android. You can keep track of your calorie, fat, protein and carb intake and it will tell you how well you are doing in getting enough vitamins and minerals. I love the recipe feature, I’ve created a whack of personal recipes, which Cronometer stores, so I don’t have to be figuring out carbs every time I make something.

6. I make sure to get enough salt! I had to give up my repulsion of salt, My father was a salt addict and died of a massive heart attack due to his carb addiction combined with an abnormally high salt intake. I also take a potassium supplement and a magnesium supplement, daily.

7. I LISTEN TO MY BODY even when it is telling me something different than what armchair ‘experts’ on the Keto Diet would try to say to me.

What doesn’t work for ME

1. Eating too much bacon or any fatty food in one sitting is/was not good for my digestive system.(wah!!!)
The current digestive issues I experience from consuming too much fat at one meal will be fixed soon. I will be taking Ox Bile and another digestive aid. This ox bile supplement will be arriving via Amazon very shortly. I had no idea I was supposed to be taking this! When I had my gall bladder out years ago, my doctors didn’t advise me about life without a gallbladder or follow-up on a diet plan. Many medical doctors now recommend that those without a gall bladder take this supplement with every fatty meal. Fortunately for those with ongoing gallbladder issues, there are medications and natural treatments that can help manage gallbladder issues that were not available to me 25 years ago.

2. I discovered that I cannot practice Intermittent Fasting, a common practice for many Keto dieters to help lose weight. I cannot fast beyond 15 hours a day. I have very slow motility (the rate your food moves through your digestive tract) due to a mechanical issue not related to weight issues. Eating one large meal a day made me sick to the point I had to broth fast for 24 hours.

As I progress in this new lifestyle, I will keep you up-to-date! While I want to lose weight, I want to gain knowledge!

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Keto Style Oven Baked Fried Chicken

Scrumptious Keto Style Oven Baked Fried Chicken - Gluten Free Low Carb

I love fried chicken, and this Oven Baked Fried Chicken Recipe is a perfect marriage of an occasional treat while keeping that treat low-carb and Keto friendly. This dish is also gluten-free but satisfies those of us who miss breaded fried chicken.

My secret glue to stick crushed pork rinds to chicken? Mayonnaise! Mayo is more efficient than the traditional egg and milk dip. And no, pork rinds don’t taste like pork in this recipe!

While Keto is high fat, moderate protein, low carb in nature, deep-fried food is not suggested, due to trans fats and overheating of healthy oils. I prefer the oven baked approach.

I do not include the nutritional values for the chicken as everyone weighs chicken in different ways. If you are coating more than two chicken legs, adjust the recipe. My tip for weighing chicken. Weigh it before you bake it, subtract the weight of the bones after eating, and place the weight of dark meat, boneless, into your food diary. I use Cronometer.

Keto Style Oven Baked Fried Chicken

Prep and Baking time: 45 – 50 minutes

Ingredients
30g or about 20 Pork Rinds
2 tbsp Almond Flour
2 tsp Zero Carb BBQ Spice Mix
Salt and Pepper to taste
1.5 tbsp Mayonnaise (approx – depends on the size of chicken)
2 chicken legs with thighs attached.

2 servings (Or one huge serving)

Nutritional Values for everything except the chicken.
400 Calories Carbs Net 3.3g Protein 17.1g Fat 27.5g

If you are baking more than 2 chicken legs, double the recipe accordingly.

Directions:

Coat chicken with mayonnaise. Rub it in with your fingers. Place in the fridge for about 1/2 hour. Make sure to wash your hands well with soap and water. Do the same to any surface the chicken touched.

Preheat the oven to 375F

Place all other ingredients in a high-speed blender or food processor. Pulse until rinds are crushed and the other ingredients are well incorporated.

Place breading mix in a shallow bowl, large enough for a chicken leg to fit. Place one chicken leg at a time in the breading, cover each piece of chicken thoroughly.

Place chicken in a well-greased cast iron frying pan or a non-stick baking dish. I use coconut oil to grease the pan. It adds a subtle flavour without being obvious.

Place chicken in oven, close door and turn down heat to 350. This will help the almond flour from not browning too quickly.

Bake chicken at 350F for 20 minutes, uncovered. Watch occasionally to make sure chicken is not getting too brown, if so, turn the pan around. Lightly tent the pan with tin foil, bake for another 20 minutes or until the joint fluids run clear.

Save the drippings to sauté spinach!

Tips:
Store Almond Flour in the freezer in a ziplock bag, sealed tight.
Pork Rinds can be found in Mexican grocery stores and Asian supermarkets as well as many convenience stores and truck stops. They come in different flavours!
Coconut oil – be sure it is Virgin, Unprocessed oil!

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.

Creamy Spinach and Ground Beef – Low Carb & Keto

Low Carb Keto Style Creamy Spinach and Ground Beef

This was my first experience cooking Keto Style, I have improved since. For a newbie, I would say my attempt at incorporating fresh greens into my diet turned out pretty well. I’ve made several versions of this simple recipe since. I’ve even scrambled eggs with spinach. Green eggs!

Failure confessions:
I substituted kale. Let’s just say I dumped the bitter mess. Cooked kale is not one of my favourites.
Frozen Spinach didn’t work as well, it was too clumpy and didn’t mix well with the beef
I tried other cheeses, without much success.
Make sure to chop the garlic very fine, no one likes a chunk of garlic with spinach.

Creamy Spinach and Ground Beef

1 Tbsp Olive Oil
500 g (about 1lb) Ground Beef
1 small Onion Chopped
3 garlic cloves crushed, chopped fine
300 g (7-8 cups) Spinach – fresh, washed and spun dry. – chopped coarsely
30g (1/3 cup) parmesan cheese
250g (1 cup) Sour Cream
Salt and pepper

Add olive oil to hot frying pan.
Add onion, saute until just translucent, add garlic and beef.
Make sure beef is cooked through and crumbled.
Drain excess fat

Add chopped spinach, a bit at a time, stirring each time to ensure it is incorporated evenly in the beef and it is not in clumps.

Add salt and pepper.

When spinach is wilted, sprinkle on the cheese, add cream, heat until just bubbly.

Serves 4
Nutritional value for one serving 375g (1.5 cups) approx
Calories 552
Net Carbs 7g
Protein 40g
Fat 39g

Serve over zucchini noodles if you have a vegetable spiralizer. I have one on my wish list! They look like a lot of fun!

Substitute spinach with riced cauliflower, then substitute parmesan cheese for cheddar.

©2016 Katherine Walden

All Amazon links are either the actual supplements, kitchen tools, and foods that I actually use or they are close proximities. While I do receive a small affiliate payment from Amazon for providing you with these links, I will not post links to products that I cannot endorse with a good conscience.