Five Go-To Low-Carb Meals

Alright, my low-carb lovers and lifestylers!  Where are you?  This round up of recipes is for YOU.  Seems to be the “trendy” thing to do these days.  But just because it’s trendy, does it mean it’s right for you?  That’s a twist on the classic “if all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you do it, too?”  A dose of healthy skepticism is needed any time a trendy new eating fad rears its head.  Here’s an intriguing read: “Carb Controversy: Why Low-Carb Diets Have Got It All Wrong” from my very own nutrition coaching certifying body, Precision Nutrition.

It’s not as though low-carb diets are actually new.  Each macronutrient (carb, protein or fat) has gone in and out of vogue over the decades.  Restricting any one or combination of macro-nutrients to take energy intake below energy expenditure is going to create weight loss.  Those are the fundamental laws of thermodynamics.  But the question is, what approach is going to work the best for YOU and make you feel, look and perform YOUR best?

Now, if you’ve done your homework and perhaps even consulted with a qualified nutrition coach (like me!), and you want to increase your repertoire of low-carb meals and snacks, who am I to deny you?  One of the best ways to determine if a particular eating approach is going to work for you is to “play scientist” and try it out.  Even if you just want to include these selections from time to time to create a more moderate intake of carbohydrates in your overall eating approach, you’re going to find these useful.

I think it’s safe to say that in my total repertoire of recipes, I have ideas for  meals and snacks that suit just about any and every style of eating (except maybe macrobiotic raw veganism).  And of course, as a busy professional working mother myself, these recipes are generally all kid- and husband-tested and approved, like my round up of family-friendly healthy recipes from just a few short months ago.  I even went the extra step of going live every time I ate over the course of a “low-carb day” – you can check out my Facebook feed for that.

Now, if you want a single place to easily reference ALL of the recipes, be sure to bookmark this page.

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Five Family-Friendly Healthy Recipes

Are you ready for the hands-on portion of the class?  I write about a lot of theory, and I decided it was time to get back to my roots (and I don’t mean my hair) – if you didn’t know, this blog actually started mainly with recipes for meals and snacks!  Since I am committed to helping busy professional working mothers to lose fat (and all other comers are welcome, too!), I thought it would be practical to share some of my latest and greatest delicious and nutritious recipes.  These are all kid- and husband-tested and approved.

I’ve taken some of the Golden Graham family favourites – a lot of these are updated, more healthful versions of perennial favourite foods like pizza or burgers.  They are delicious AND nutritious, and I especially love them because they can be on the table in 20-30 minutes (or faster, if you do some make-ahead prep – my top prep tips are here).  You’ll definitely want to pin or bookmark this page for easy reference for these recipes to keep you winning the weeknight dinner wars!

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How-To: Eat Out Healthfully

Building on last week’s post about How-To: Make Healthful Meals FAST, one of my top tips was to take advantage of fast food/restaurant options (!).  Oh yes, in my world there are definitely ways to fit fast food into your fitness lifestyle.  I decided to expand on the theme with my top tips for Eating Out Healthfully ANYWHERE – whether that’s a BBQ or a potluck or a fundraising dinner or a restaurant…whether it’s with friends or family or co-workers or complete strangers…excited to learn more?  Let’s get to it!

 

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(High-Protein) Power Potato Salad (Gluten-free, Grain-free, Paleo-friendly)

Power Potato Salad PlateYou might think of potato salad as strictly a summer food, the stuff of cookouts and backyard barbecues.  Well, it’s time to think again!  Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, it’s entirely likely that you’ll have leftover boiled potatoes on hand.  Keep yourself fueled up for the busy-ness of the season with this high-protein option (and save the recipe for next summer, too!). You can also make a version that is Paleo-friendly (and yes, it can be Whole30-compliant).

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Low-carb Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie (Vegan option)

Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie MugA creamy protein smoothie with the classic flavour combination of rich dark chocolate and cool mint.  Instead of a piece of chocolate or peppermint pattie that runs the risk of melting or being squished, you can safely drink this mint chocolate concoction to get your fix AND do it with more protein and fewer carbohydrates, calories and fat than almost any blended frozen drink!

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(High-Protein) Cinnamon-Vanilla French Toast (Gluten-free and/or Low-carb options)

High-Protein Cinnamon-Vanilla French Toast with SyrupWho doesn’t love soft, fluffy French toast?  Even better when it’s flavoured with the sweetness of vanilla and the warm spice of cinnamon.  Even better still when it is packed with protein to power you through your day!  And you’d never guess that it’s lower in carbohydrates than many French toast recipes and other breakfast treats and pastries.

No need to save this recipe for the weekend (although it makes a great addition to any brunch) – let’s whip it up RIGHT NOW!

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(High-Protein) Dark Chocolate Almond Coconut “Almond Joy” Overnight Oatmeal

Dark Chocolate Almond Coconut Almond Joy Overnight Oatmeal BowlPieces of rich, decadent dark chocolate.  Slivers of slightly-sweet, crunchy, nutty almonds.  Flakes of coconut adding taste and texture to every bite.  Am I describing the famous Almond Joy chocolate bar or breakfast?  Guess what?  With my new “Almond Joy” Overnight Oatmeal, the answer is both!  Except that the oatmeal version packs the goodness of whole grain oats, extra protein to fuel your day and no added sugar.  But you can still pretend you’re having a candy bar for breakfast and no one will be the wiser.

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Coconut Oatmeal Cookie Protein Smoothie (Vegan option)

Coconut Oatmeal Cookie Protein SmoothieA creamy, cool protein smoothie that tastes just like an oatmeal cookie with coconut. The extra fiber and healthy fats offer more staying power than your average protein shake!  Whip it up in the blender in mere minutes and enjoy at home or on the go.  Depending on your protein powder, you can even make this recipe vegan, too.

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Weeknight Winner Wednesday: (Paleo) Honey-Lime Spicy Shrimp Stir-fry (Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Grain-free)

Honey-Lime Spicy Shrimp Stir-fry PanOther than sticking with Wednesdays, I guess I haven’t been very faithful with Weeknight Winner Wednesdays!   But hey, as in all things fitness and nutrition-related, you do the best you can with what you have, when you can.  So here is the long-awaited (?) fourth installment and this time we’ve got seafood back on the blog (or perhaps you’ll consider this the first appearance, if you’re grouping seafood such as shrimp separately from fish).  It’s heating up outside, but there’s no reason you can’t add some heat in the kitchen with the spices in this Honey-Lime Spicy Shrimp Stir-fry!  Make it as hot (or not) as you like!

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(High-Protein) Carrot Cake Overnight Oatmeal

Carrot Cake Overnight Oatmeal Mason JarCarrot cake is sneaky.  Delicious, but sneaky. It promises to be “healthy” with its grated carrot (a great source of beta-carotene!) but many traditional carrot cake recipes can feature up to TWO CUPS of refined white sugar!  Not to mention, added oils, white flour and all those other ingredients that seem to make baked goods taste so darn good and yet aren’t necessarily so darn good for you.  Well, the buck (or won, or yen or dollar or kroner or whatever) stops here!  It’s time to faithfully represent the true health benefits of carrot cake with this recipe that is FREE of refined sugar, FREE of gluten, FREE of flour and FREE of added fats/oils (but no, not free of calories – what world are you living in?) – all those FREEBIES add up to a BIG, FAT SPENDING on FLAVOUR!  Woo-hoo!

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