Tag Archives: healthy

Easy Shrimp Scampi with Kale

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Serves: 2 | Total Time: 30 Minutes



Shrimp scampi is so spring.

Yes, I know, spring has been procrastinating this year. Mother’s Day is right around the corner, and even though I refuse to wear a winter coat this time of year, the puffer vest is still, sadly, a necessity.

This shrimp scampi recipe is so full of bright flavors and healthy greens and it is so easy to make that even beginners can join in on the fun.

Homemade Shrimp Scampi with Kale

Cold, windy weather? May you become an afterthought!

Healthy meals to cook don’t have to be hard! If you don’t know how to make shrimp scampi, don’t worry. All you need is one pan and 30 minutes. 

Traditional shrimp scampi sauce involves butter, garlic, and white wine.

That’s it.

Plus, it is really easy to make homemade scampi sauce!

Not convinced? Check out this video I made for you to show you just how simple it is!

If you are a novice, the only thing you need to remember is to turn down the heat (off if you have a gas range) when you add the wine. Slowly bring it back up to a simmer to cook off the alcohol without igniting it. If it does catch fire, pull the pan away from the stove and shake it until the flames die out, then act like the pro chef you are because you now just officially mastered the art of flambéing your food.

Woo hoo!

Shrimp Scampi Recipe

You may be wondering what the best wine for shrimp scampi may be. Although white wine is the rule of thumb, I prefer to use an off-dry white. You want it to be dry, but not too dry, because a hint of sweetness will bring out the rich flavor of the shrimp instead of competing with it. Too sweet, and your seafood scampi sauce will flop miserably.

Balance, folks. It is the number one secret to culinary success.

For those of you not into alcohol, the white wine can be substituted with something booze-free. Check out the Non-Alcoholic Substitution Chart to learn what you can use in place of the white wine. Just remember, not too sweet, so if you have to tone down grape juice with a splash of vinegar, please do so.

Scampi Recipe

I added kale to my shrimp scampi to give it some color and flavor. Plus, kale is so very good for you. The trick is to wilt the leaves and brighten their color without losing too much volume. You do this by searing it in the scampi sauce for – literally – 30 seconds to a minute. Have your kitchen tongs ready, because you will need to whisk that kale out of the pan almost as soon as you’ve dropped it in there!

Lemon essential oil adds a mild brightness, but feel free to sub in lemon zest if you don’t have any essential oil. Refer to the handy Essential Oil Conversion Chart for how much zest to use.

Now all you have to do is grab that bottle of white and your tank top…. er, light parka, and get that front porch furniture out. Before you know it, we’ll be having dinner outside again!

A Healthy Meal To Cook At Home

How to make Easy Shrimp Scampi with Kale:

What you’ll need:

  • 12 ounces fettuccini
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 2/3 cup good quality white wine
  • 3 ounces fresh baby kale, rinsed and spun
  • 3 drops lemon essential oil diluted in 1/2 tablespoon olive oil (to use lemon zest instead, check the Essential Oil Conversion Chart
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Begin by boiling a pot of salted water for the pasta, then cook it al dente per the package instructions. When done, drain it and set it aside, reserving some of the pasta liquid.
The Best Noodles To Use For Shrimp Scampi Pasta

While the pasta is cooking, heat the butter in a skillet over medium until it is melted, smelling nutty, and beginning to brown, about 4-5 minutes. Add the shrimp and toss occasionally for 2 minutes, or until the shrimp just begins to turn pink. Add the garlic and sauté for 2 more minutes, stirring constantly.

How To Make Scampi Sauce, Begin With Browned Butter
How To Cook Shrimp Scampi
How To Make Shrimp Scampi

Add the wine to the skillet, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook for 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the shrimp to a bowl and set aside.

Add the kale to the skillet and toss immediately until it wilts but is still bright green, about 30 seconds to a minute at most. Remove kale to a separate plate, set aside.

Shrimp Scampi Recipe With Wine
How To Cook Kale

Pour the essential oil mixture over the shrimp. Cover the bowl with a plate and toss several times to coat the shrimp with the essential oil mixture.

How Do I Make Scampi Sauce?

Turn off the heat over the skillet containing the scampi sauce. Add in the pasta, kale, and shrimp, season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. If needed, add some of the pasta liquid to thicken things up a bit. Serve on plates garnished with lemon wedges.

A Healthy Dinner Meal


Shrimp Dinner Idea
Healthy Dinner Ideas
Quick and Healthy Dinner Idea
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Homemade Mayonnaise

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Yield: 2 Cups | Total Time: 20 Minutes

You know that moment when you go to make a sandwich and you realize…..

where’s the mayo?

Which begs the question…..

“Got Mayo?”

Dum dum dummmmm……

“No! I don’t! Now what do I do? I’ve only got 30 minutes before I have to be out the door and I need to finish the potato salad I promised to bring to the potluck that begins in one hour!”

Well, I’ve had moments like this, and recently that moment happened during the middle of a snowstorm when all I wanted to do was make myself an egg salad sandwich. As you may know from watching my videos, my husband Mark and I live so far out in the country that we don’t even have garbage or recycling pick-up. (Translation: Winter Storm = Where Did The Road Go?) I’ve been saving all the glass jars, however, and thought… maybe I can use one to fill with some homemade mayonnaise!

But…

How to make homemade mayonnaise?

Now you might be thinking that learning how to make mayo at home is going to be hard. Like, how do you make mayonnaise? I thought it would be hard, too, but it really isn’t – unless you struggle with patience because getting a great quality homemade mayo that isn’t goopy will take about 15 minutes of your time – and some elbow grease if you don’t have an electric stand mixer. (Which is great if you can’t get to the gym because of, you know…. snowstorm….)

Fresh mayonnaise is mostly made up of egg and oil. Those two don’t typically mix all that well unless you emulsify them. This is where the lengthy and high speed whisking comes in – lengthy because you only want to add the oil one drop at a time (very important for that light and creamy texture that makes mayo so spreadable) and high speed because you want to add air while doing it.

While egg and oil make a great mayo base, they don’t have a lot of flavor on their own. That is why even the most simple mayonnaise recipe is flavored with other stuff like vinegar, lemon, and mustard. (It should be, anyway. Have you read the ingredient label on the store bought stuff? The ingredients used to make mayonnaise should never sound like a lesson in chemistry.) Vinegar, lemon and mustard give this homemade mayonnaise that characteristic tang that makes mayo so yummy. Its for this reason you can probably make your own mayo right now because these basic ingredients are things most people already have in the kitchen or pantry (which is great news if you are snowed in and really want that egg salad sandwich!)

Now for anyone who knows me well, you know that I can’t just stick to basic when it comes to recipes. I dug around my pantry and found apple cider vinegar, so of course I had to throw that in there because, you know, it’s healthy, as is mayo made with olive oil… so I added that in there, too. I will sometimes sweeten the tangy bite a little bit by using honey dijon mustard, but feel free to use regular or plain dijon if you have it. Any mustard will do, it all depends on your preference.

Now for the sriracha… don’t omit it. Six drops won’t make your diy mayonnaise taste spicy, but they will round out the acid just right. Of course, you can add as much as you like, especially if you like things hot. I just prefer to add more flavors as I use the mayo for various recipes, like my Germaniana potato salad or Dilly-Horse Tartar Sauce – which goes great with my 30-Minute Amazing Cod Dinner. (I think I’ve just made my dinner menu tonight simply with the act of creating this mayonnaise recipe!)

Still not convinced on how easy it is to make your own mayonnaise at home? Watch me making this mayo in the video below. I think that making this video was actually harder than making mayo by hand! This recipe comes together so fast that there was no time for second, third (or thirtieth) takes on this one, which means that Felix’s mad dash out of the room behind me had to stay in the final cut…

Gotta luv ‘dem!


Homemade Mayonnaise

Total Time: 20 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • egg
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 4 drops lemon essential oil (or 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 6 drops hot pepper sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dijon mustard

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Place the egg in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat the egg at high speed until pale and frothy, about 3 minutes.

How To Make Mayo At Home

2. Combine the vegetable and olive oils in a measuring cup that has a pour spout. With the mixer running, begin adding the oil to the egg one drop at a time. This may seem tedious, but adding the oil only one drop at a time will enable it to emulsify, giving the mayonnaise its light, fluffy texture. If you add the oil too fast, your mayonnaise will end up more like a soup that will eventually separate. Yuck! After adding about a 3rd of the oil, you may increase the drops to a very thin stream, backing off every few seconds to give the oil time to suspend into the mixture properly. As you keep this up, the mixture will begin to resemble mayonnaise. This whole process of adding the oil will take about 15 minutes. Be patient – you can’t rush this step!

Making Mayo

3. Once the oil is completely added to the mayonnaise, continue to whisk on high speed for another minute. While the mixer is still running at high speed, add the essential oil, salt, vinegars, hot pepper sauce, and mustard. Allow several seconds to pass in between each ingredient so that they don’t deflate the mayonnaise.

4. Stop the mixer and transfer the mayonnaise to a small glass jar with a tight fitting lid. The mayonnaise should be a pale yellow color. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use (the mayonnaise will firm up even more as it cools).

Fresh Mayonnaise

5. Serve as you would store-bought mayo; on sandwiches, in dressings, in salads, in mashed potatoes, in sauces… etc…

Simple Mayonnaise

How Do You Make Mayonnaise?
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Spicy Tofu with Coconut Cream Sauce

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Serves: 2 | Total Time: 15 Hours

Ahhh, the allure of vegetarian tofu recipes….

But what if you don’t know how to cook tofu?

Learning how to prepare tofu is easy. Trust me on this one – really. All it takes is a little planning ahead so that the tofu drains and marinates properly. The cooking part – that’s a cinch!

How to make crispy tofu doesn’t have to be a process that intimidates anyone, either. Just one ingredient is needed to get that delightful crunch on the outside…

…dum da dah…. dum dee dooo…

wait for it…..

wait for it…

Cornstarch!

Bet you never guessed that one, and cornstarch isn’t has unhealthy as you think. Although it doesn’t have a lot else going for it, cornstarch is GLUTEN-FREE, so it works great as a flour substitute for getting the crunch that makes tofu so fun to eat.

In this spicy tofu recipe, I flavored both the tofu and it’s crispy coating with a little punch. Don’t worry about the spice being too much, however, because the coconut cream sauce will compliment any heat – toning it down perfectly. Tofu is bland all by itself, so when it soaks up the spice, it does so with finesse.

Tofu is definitely not an ‘in-your-face’ kind of ingredient!

My favorite way to serve this spicy tofu is on a bed of cooked basmati rice. The rice becomes like a pudding when it soaks up all that coconut milk. 

Mmmmm, a vegetarian dish full of wonderful flavor.

Pure indulgence. (If I must say so myself!)


Spicy Tofu with Coconut Cream Sauce

Total Time: 15 Hours

Prep: 15 Minutes / Cook: 15 Minutes / Drain and Marinate: 14 Hours 30 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 14 ounces organic firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon juice from a jar of pickled jalapeños
  • 1/2 teaspoon unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle pepper in adobo seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 drops Liquid Stevia Extract
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 tablespoon yellow curry powder
  • pinch Organic Powdered Stevia
  • pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon Organic Sesame Oil, plus more as needed
  • 15 ounces unsweetened organic coconut milk, full fat
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Fresh cilantro, for garnish

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. The night before: Drain the tofu by placing it on a small sheet pan lined with several paper towels. Cover the tofu with another several layers of paper towels then place something flat and heavy on top, like a cast iron skillet or a plate weighted down with something heavy. Refrigerate overnight.

How To Prepare Tofu

2. The morning of: Remove the tofu from the sheet pan and discard the liquid. To make the marinade, whisk together the soy sauce,  jalapeño juice, rice vinegar, chipotle pepper in adobo seasoning, lemon juice and liquid stevia in a measuring cup. Cut the drained tofu into 3/4 inch cubes and place them on a plate in a single layer. Pour the marinade over, then gently toss the tofu to coat. Be very careful not to break the tofu as it is very fragile when raw! Once coated, seat each tofu cube into the marinade remaining on the plate in a single layer. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 6 hours.

Best Tofu Recipes

3. Twenty minutes before it is time to eat, sift together the cornstarch, curry powder, stevia powder, and salt in a shallow bowl. Carefully toss the tofu in the cornstarch mixture until each piece is coated. (Most, if not all, of the cornstarch mixture will be picked up quickly by the moist tofu, so you will need to work fast while being careful not to break the tofu.) Set aside.

How To Make Tofu Taste Good

4. Heat sesame oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Make sure the skillet is searing hot before you add the tofu! Once the oil begins to smoke, add the tofu squares to the skillet in a single layer. Allow them to sear for about a minute on each side. To turn the tofu, use kitchen tongs or two spoons, but be careful not to crush the tofu. Keep turning until all sides of each square are light golden brown and crispy, but not burned. Add more sesame oil a teaspoon at at time to keep the skillet from drying out. This whole process will take 6-8 minutes, but you will need to constantly be turning the squares during this time. Once all sides of each square are browned, transfer the tofu to a plate.


Tofu Recipes
Spicy Tofu with Coconut Cream Sauce

Spicy Tofu with Coconut Cream Sauce

This vegetarian tofu recipe is spicy, crispy, and super easy to make. Both the tofu and it's crispy cornstarch coating are flavored with a little punch. Don't worry about the spice, however, because the coconut cream sauce will compliment any heat perfectly.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Time to drain and marinate: 14 hrs 30 mins
Total Time 15 hrs
Course Main Course
Servings 2 people

Ingredients
  

  • 14 ounces organic firm tofu
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon juice from a jar of pickled jalapeños
  • ½ teaspoon unseasoned rice vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon chipotle pepper in adobo seasoning
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 drops liquid stevia extract
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ tablespoon yellow curry powder
  • 1 pinch organic powdered stevia
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon organic sesame oil plus more as needed
  • 15 ounces unsweetened organic coconut milk full fat
  • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • fresh cilantro for garnish

Instructions
 

  • The night before: Drain the tofu by placing it on a small sheet pan lined with several paper towels. Cover the tofu with another several layers of paper towels then place something flat and heavy on top, like a cast iron skillet or a plate weighted down with something heavy. Refrigerate overnight.
  • The morning of: Remove the tofu from the sheet pan and discard the liquid. To make the marinade, whisk together the soy sauce,  jalapeño juice, rice vinegar, chipotle pepper in adobo seasoning, lemon juice and liquid stevia in a measuring cup. Cut the drained tofu into 3/4 inch cubes and place them on a plate in a single layer. Pour the marinade over, then gently toss the tofu to coat. Be very careful not to break the tofu as it is very fragile when raw! Once coated, seat each tofu cube into the marinade remaining on the plate in a single layer. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 6 hours.
  • Twenty minutes before it is time to eat, sift together the cornstarch, curry powder, stevia powder, and salt in a shallow bowl. Carefully toss the tofu in the cornstarch mixture until each piece is coated. (Most, if not all, of the cornstarch mixture will be picked up quickly by the moist tofu, so you will need to work fast while being careful not to break the tofu.) Set aside.
  • Heat sesame oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Make sure the skillet is searing hot before you add the tofu! Once the oil begins to smoke, add the tofu squares to the skillet in a single layer. Allow them to sear for about a minute on each side. To turn the tofu, use kitchen tongs or two spoons, but be careful not to crush the tofu. Keep turning until all sides of each square are light golden brown and crispy, but not burned. Add more sesame oil a teaspoon at at time to keep the skillet from drying out. This whole process will take 6-8 minutes, but you will need to constantly be turning the squares during this time. Once all sides of each square are browned, transfer the tofu to a plate.
Keyword easy tofu recipes, how to cook tofu, how to make tofu taste good, spicy tofu, stovetop tofu recipe, tofu with coconut cream sauce, vegetarian tofu recipes
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Soup For When You Are Sick

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Serves: 4 | Total Time: 20 Minutes

This get will soup recipe was born while I suffered through a bad bout of bronchitis in – of all seasons – summer!

Bronchitis in summer may seem like an odd occurrence, but it can happen. The last thing you feel like doing while sick is cooking (especially in the hotter months) but cooking is necessary if you want a good soup for when you are sick.

The good news is that this healing soup is easy to make and only takes 20 minutes if you keep a few items on hand.


Jump to Recipe

The four healthy ingredients for sickness that make this a perfect soup for healing colds and flu are:

  • cayenne pepper
  • dried wakame
  • sesame oil
  • garlic
  • (Garlic with the skins left on, I must add. Those garlic skins have lots of immune boosting power!)

Dried wakame and sesame oil will keep indefinitely when stored properly, and the rest of the ingredients are easy to get if you need to make a quick run to the grocery store when not feeling well.

Since I am plagued with a compromised upper respiratory system and have had bronchitis and pneumonia more times than I can remember, I always have these healthy ingredients on hand… just in case. The tortellini will fill you up, so pick any kind you like, and bone broth is just yummy and full of healthy stuff. Both tortellini and bone broth can be kept in the freezer for weeks – or until you need them. If you don’t have bone broth, simply use beef, chicken, vegetable, whatever you have on hand. I just like using bone broth because it is so rich, perfect when your appetite might be as under the weather as you are. But hey, you gotta eat and this seaweed stew will go down easy – which makes this the best sick soup recipe ever!

I make a big batch of this immune boosting meal when I need it and because it is so flavorful, trust me… you won’t get tired of it if you eat it every day for a week. Serve it piping hot, and if you can, inhale the steam in between bites. The rest of the soup will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week, (and believe me, you will want to have it every day until you are feeling better.)


Healing Soup
Healthy Ingredients For Sickness

Healthy Tips:

  • Did you know that the skins of garlic are rich in nutrients and have many health benefits? So, don’t throw them away! Click the link to read more about the health benefits of garlic skins (and the many other interesting ways you can use garlic and onion skins).
  • There is a reason sesame oil has been used for centuries in Asian cuisine. Click to find out how the health benefits of sesame oil can help you.
Immune Boosting Meal

Get Well Soup Recipe
Soup For When You Are Sick
Easy Soup Recipe When Sick

Soup For When You Are Sick

Sickness can strike at any time. Be ready by stocking up on these healthy ingredients for sickness. This get well soup only takes 20 minutes and is very easy to make – good news for the hungry cold sufferer!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Soup
Cuisine American, Italian, Japanese
Servings 4 Bowls

Equipment

  • dutch oven or large pot
  • large ladle
  • heat-proof soup bowls

Ingredients
  

  • 5 cups bone broth
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 head organic garlic cut in half crosswise with skins left on
  • 2 tablespoons dried wakame
  • 2 cups frozen tortellini of your choice
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil for drizzling
  • red pepper flakes for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Bring the bone broth and water to a rigorous boil over medium-high heat. Stir in the cayenne, garlic, scallions, wakame, and tortellini. Allow to simmer for another 5-8 minutes, or until the tortellini is cooked through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Use a ladle to spoon the soup into small crocks or heat-proof bowls. Drizzle with sesame oil and red pepper flakes. Serve immediately, you want this soup to be piping hot.
Keyword easy soup recipes when sick, fast easy meals, get well soup recipe, healing soup recipes, healthy ingredients for sickness, immune boosting meals, seaweed stew, sick soup recipe, soup for healing, soup for when you are sick
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Cucumber Lemon Confetti Rice

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Serves: 6 | Total Time: 30 Minutes

This rice recipe uses only 5 ingredients and takes 30 minutes. It is bright, savory, and truly edible confetti in a bowl thanks to red quinoa, green cucumbers, yellow lemons, and – of course – creamy rice.

A great recipe if you are looking for healthy side dishes for summer.

Also nice if you are looking for easy side dishes for a potluck!

This quick and easy side dish recipe beats fried rice in the summer months because it is so simple and light, yet it will go with any entree that fried rice normally goes with.

I add about a half teaspoon of salt to my rice, but feel free to add more or scale back as you see fit. Rice side dish recipes are flexible that way.

Talk about easy side dishes for summer!


Cucumber Lemon Confetti Rice

Total Time: 30 Minutes

Prep: 10 Minutes / Cook: 20 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups brown rice (not instant)
  • 2 tablespoons red quinoa (not instant)
  • 2 mini seedless cucumbers (middles scooped out); finely diced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the rice and quinoa and cook until al dente, about 20 minutes. Drain and allow to cool slightly.

2. Add the cucumber, lemon zest, canola oil, salt and pepper to the rice. Stir to combine. Serve immediately.

Cucumber Lemon Confetti Rice

Helpful Tip:

To remove the fleshy middles of the cucumbers, slice them in half lengthwise, then slice the halves into very thin strips, also lengthwise. Cut away the middle parts of the cucumber strips from the outer parts. Don’t discard the middle parts! You can use them to infuse water for drinking. Just place them into a pitcher filled with filtered water, then place the water in the refrigerator for at least an hour. When you need a refreshing thirst quencher, this cucumber water will be chilled and naturally flavored!  When the water runs out, just keep refilling the pitcher while leaving the cucumbers in it. This can be done over and over for a few days.


Summer Side Dish Recipe Idea
Cucumber Lemon Confetti Rice

Cucumber Lemon Confetti Rice

The perfect summer side dish, this fast and easy cucumber lemon rice recipe is healthy and colorful, but most of all, full of flavor. Great for potlucks!
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 6 people
Calories 270 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups brown rice (not instant)
  • 2 tablespoons red quinoa (not instant)
  • 2 mini seedless cucumbers (middles scooped out) finely diced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions
 

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the rice and quinoa and cook until al dente, about 20 minutes. Drain and allow to cool slightly.
  • Add the cucumber, lemon zest, canola oil, salt and pepper to the rice. Stir to combine. Serve immediately.

Notes

To remove the fleshy middles of the cucumbers, slice them in half lengthwise, then slice the halves into very thin strips, also lengthwise. Cut away the middle parts of the cucumber strips from the outer parts. Don’t discard the middle parts! You can use them to infuse water for drinking. Just place them into a pitcher filled with filtered water, then place the water in the refrigerator for at least an hour. When you need a refreshing thirst quencher, this cucumber water will be chilled and naturally flavored!  When the water runs out, just keep refilling the pitcher while leaving the cucumbers in it. This can be done over and over for a few days.
Keyword confetti rice recipe, healthy side dishes, lemon cucumber confetti rice, rice and quinoa recipe, summer side dish ideas
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Cabbage Sarma Stuffed with Laotian Lamb Larb

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Serves: 2 | Total Time: 30 Minutes

I love ground lamb recipes because they are so versatile.

Lamb larb is so easy to make – perfect if you are looking for summer dinner ideas on the fly. In addition to the juicy lamb meat, crunchy peanuts, and the hint of spice from the chilis, you’ll be surprised to know that this dinner is keto as well.

Even though ground lamb is the main ingredient, this meal is light, tasty, and oh so messy! The best part is that you can have this fast, easy dinner on the table in 30 minutes, too. 

So, grab those napkins and head on out to the front porch. This great low carb substitute for traditional hamburgers just might become your new favorite easy weeknight meal.


Cabbage Sarma Stuffed with Laotian Lamb Larb

Total Time: 30 Minutes

Prep: 15 Minutes / Cook: 15 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus 1/2 tablespoon, divided
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 1 lb. ground lamb
  • kosher salt
  • 1 large shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 5 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3 dried chili d-arbol, seeds removed and crushed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons torn mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 1 drop marjoram essential oil
  • green cabbage, quartered and leaves separated
  • Roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Arrange the peanuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant. Allow to cool slightly then chop into small pieces.

2. While the peanuts are baking, prepare the other ingredients. 

3. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the garlic and using a wooden spoon, smash them down into the hot oil until they break into smaller pieces. Keep this up for about 2 minutes, continuously mashing the garlic around in the oil until it becomes golden brown, but not burnt.

4. Add the ground lamb to the skillet with a pinch of salt. Stir the lamb into the garlic, mashing it down to really infuse the flavor into the meat. Continue doing this for about 3 minutes or until no clumps remain and meat is no longer pink. Remove the skillet from the heat immediately to prevent overcooking. Do not drain off the fat.

5. With the skillet still off the heat, add the shallots, scallions, chilis, lime juice, fish sauce, mint, basil, and half of the peanuts. Whisk the essential oils into the remaining half tablespoon of olive oil, then fold it into the lamb larb. Gently stir to combine all ingredients.

6. Transfer lamb larb to a bowl with a large spoon. Arrange cabbage leaves on a platter with the remaining peanuts and the cilantro in ramekins. To serve, spoon the lamb larb into a cabbage leaf and garnish with peanuts and cilantro. Roll the leaf around the meat, then eat it with your hands. 

Cabbage Sarma Stuffed With Laotian Lamb Larb
Cabbage Sarma Stuffed With Laotian Lamb Larb Recipe

Cabbage Sarma stuffed with Laotian Lamb Larb

Juicy ground lamb, crunchy peanuts, and spicy chilis are all wrapped in a cabbage roll. This keto dinner is the perfect substitute for traditional burgers, especially for hot summer weeknights because it only takes 30 minutes to make.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Laotian
Servings 2 people
Calories 1030 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup unsalted peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus ½ tablespoon, divided
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled and smashed
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • kosher salt
  • 1 large shallot peeled and thinly sliced
  • 5 scallions thinly sliced
  • 3 dried chili d'arbol seeds removed and crushed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons torn mint leaves
  • ½ cup roughly chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 1 drop marjoram essential oil
  • green cabbage quartered and leaves separated
  • roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Arrange the peanuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant. Allow to cool slightly then chop into small pieces.
  • While the peanuts are baking, prepare the other ingredients. 
  • Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the garlic and using a wooden spoon, smash them down into the hot oil until they break into smaller pieces. Keep this up for about 2 minutes, continuously mashing the garlic around in the oil until it becomes golden brown, but not burnt.
  • Add the ground lamb to the skillet with a pinch of salt. Stir the lamb into the garlic, mashing it down to really infuse the flavor into the meat. Continue doing this for about 3 minutes or until no clumps remain and meat is no longer pink. Remove the skillet from the heat immediately to prevent overcooking. Do not drain off the fat.
  • With the skillet still off the heat, add the shallots, scallions, chilis, lime juice, fish sauce, mint, basil, and half of the peanuts. Whisk the essential oils into the remaining half tablespoon of olive oil, then fold it into the lamb larb. Gently stir to combine all ingredients.
  • Transfer lamb larb to a bowl with a large spoon. Arrange cabbage leaves on a platter with the remaining peanuts and the cilantro in ramekins. To serve, spoon the lamb larb into a cabbage leaf and garnish with peanuts and cilantro. Roll the leaf around the meat, then eat it with your hands. 
Keyword 30 minute meals, cabbage sarma, fast easy meals, keto lamb recipes, keto recipes, lamb larb, stuffed cabbage, summer recipes
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Keto Key Lime Mousse

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Serves: 6 | Total Time: 35 Minutes

I recently saw a recipe on TV for key lime mousse and thought, wouldn’t it be nice if there was a keto version of this? How about a key lime mousse that is nearly sugar free, even?

I am sure that there are many keto key lime mousse recipes out there, but anyone who knows me knows that when I have a revelation like this, I need to create my own version of said recipe.

This is what I love the most about being a chef. When there are recipes that I want to re-create as keto recipes, being able to do so isn’t always easy. I can’t use flour, for one. Sugar is definitely out, as are most fruits and fruit juices as well.

I will admit that I was intimidated by the idea of coming up with a fat bomb dessert in the form of key lime mousse. I sat on this idea for nearly a month before I set out to make it come to life.

It took me three tries and several hours, but the result is this keto key lime mousse recipe that I am quite proud of. It is light and airy like a spring dessert mousse should be, yet it is incredibly filling…

Yeah! Can anyone say fat bomb

Except you get to eat this one with a spoon, which makes it perfect for a garden tea party – keto style!


Keto Key Lime Mousse

Total Time: 35 Minutes

Prep: 20 Minutes / Chill: 15 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered whole leaf stevia
  • 16 drops lime essential oil
  • 6 egg whites, room temperature
  • zest of 1 lime

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. In a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the cream, stevia, and essential oil until stiff peaks form. Set aside.

2. Using a clean bowl, beat the egg whites with the whisk attachment of a stand mixer at high speed, until stiff peaks form. You want the egg whites to be very fluffy! When the egg whites begin to collect inside of the whisk, then they are ready. This should take about 5 minutes.

How To Make Keto Key Lime Mousse
What your eggs whites should look like when ready.

3. Fold the lime zest into the whipped cream, then divide the whipped cream into two equal portions. Fold the first portion of the whipped cream into the egg whites and gently incorporate with a rubber spatula until the egg whites reduce in size to about half. Fold in the remaining whipped cream until well mixed throughout, but be careful not to over-stir. 

Lime Zest For Keto Key Lime Mousse
When zesting the lime, make sure to only get the green part.
The white pith underneath is bitter!

4. Carefully spoon the mousse into a piping bag with the star attachment. Pipe mousse into six small serving dishes, then garnish each with a small sprinkle of lime zest and a sprig of fresh mint. Refrigerate immediately and chill for a minimum of 15 minutes, but not more than 3 hours, before serving.

Low Carb Low Sugar Key Lime Dessert
Keto Dessert Idea
Keto Key Lime Mousse Recipe

Keto Key Lime Mousse

A keto fat bomb dessert in the form of a mousse. Serve this Keto Key Lime Mousse at your next garden tea party! It’s fast and easy to make and only uses 5 ingredients. 89% FAT / 8% PROTEIN / 2% CARBS
Prep Time 20 mins
Chill 15 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 6 people
Calories 287 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • ½ teaspoon powdered whole leaf stevia
  • 16 drops lime essential oil
  • 6 egg whites room temperature
  • zest of 1 lime

Instructions
 

  • In a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the cream, stevia, and essential oil until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
  • Using a clean bowl, beat the egg whites with the whisk attachment of a stand mixer at high speed, until stiff peaks form. You want the egg whites to be very fluffy! When the egg whites begin to collect inside of the whisk, then they are ready. This should take about 5 minutes.
  • Fold the lime zest into the whipped cream, then divide the whipped cream into two equal portions. Fold the first portion of the whipped cream into the egg whites and gently incorporate with a rubber spatula until the egg whites reduce in size to about half. Fold in the remaining whipped cream until well mixed throughout, but be careful not to over-stir. 
  • Carefully spoon the mousse into a piping bag with the star attachment. Pipe mousse into six small serving dishes, then garnish each with a small sprinkle of lime zest and a sprig of fresh mint. Refrigerate immediately and chill for a minimum of 15 minutes, but not more than 3 hours, before serving.

Notes

It is important to use powdered whole leaf stevia in this recipe in order to get the pale green color naturally. If you decide to use stevia extract instead, you may want to add a little green food coloring to your mousse.
When zesting the lime, be sure to get only the green surface of the lime and not much else. The white pith beneath the green peel can be bitter. Run the lime briskly across the zester, rotating it in your hand as you go so you don’t take off too much!
Keyword how to make low carb mousse, keto desserts, keto key lime mousse recipe, sugar free mousse recipe
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Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing with Yogurt

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Yield: 2 Cups | Total Time: 15 Minutes

I first made this recipe seven years ago. Then I lost the little piece of paper I had printed it on.

I never did forget about this blue cheese recipe, though. You know when something is so good that it sticks in your head forever? For me, that was this homemade blue cheese dressing with yogurt. 

You can imagine my excitement when I found this recipe last month while going through some old files on my computer. I had saved it somewhere after all! 

When emulsifying the egg yolk and olive oil, use your stand mixer at the highest speed to whisk the egg while drizzling in the olive oil at the slowest pace. It is the only way to get the creamiest blue cheese dressing possible without using mayonnaise. 

If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can still make this recipe, just allow yourself a lot more time and skip your workout at the gym today – this will more than cover for it.

I am so excited to share this recipe with you!  It truly is one of my favorites.


Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing with Yogurt

Total Time: 15 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 16 ounces plain greek yogurt, full fat
  • 3 ounces blue cheese crumbles

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Using a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the mustard, salt, pepper, and egg yolk on high speed until the mixture becomes pale and creamy. While the mixer is running, add the parsley and garlic.

2. Very slowly add the olive oil, a tablespoon at a time, while the mixer runs at high speed. Do not rush this step! Once the oil is added and the dressing has emulsified, add in the vinegar and lemon juice. Continue to mix until well blended.

3. Reduce the mixer’s speed to medium and add the yogurt until well combined, then turn off the mixer. Taste the dressing and season with more salt and pepper, as needed.

4. Remove the mixing bowl from the stand. Stir the blue cheese crumbles into the dressing with a rubber spatula. Transfer the dressing to a large jar with a tight-fitting lid and store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Easy To Make Blue Cheese Dressing On Wedge Salad With Bacon And Tomatoes
Homemade Healthy Blue Cheese Dressing
Healthy Blue Cheese Dressing

Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing with Yogurt

This homemade blue cheese dressing with yogurt is very easy to make; it requires no mayo or sour cream, yet it is just as creamy as the original.
Prep Time 15 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course Condiments, Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 2 Cups
Calories 63 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 clove garlic peeled and finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 pound plain greek yogurt full fat
  • 3 ounces blue cheese crumbles

Instructions
 

  • Using a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the mustard, salt, pepper, and egg yolk on high speed until the mixture becomes pale and creamy. While the mixer is running, add the parsley and garlic.
  • Very slowly add the olive oil, a tablespoon at a time, while the mixer runs at high speed. Do not rush this step! Once the oil is added and the dressing has emulsified, add in the vinegar and lemon juice. Continue to mix until well blended.
  • Reduce the mixer's speed to medium and add the yogurt until well combined, then turn off the mixer. Taste the dressing and season with more salt and pepper, as needed.
  • Remove the mixing bowl from the stand. Stir the blue cheese crumbles into the dressing with a rubber spatula. Transfer the dressing to a large jar with a tight-fitting lid and store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Notes

Calories based on a serving size of 2 tablespoons.
Keyword blue cheese dressing with yogurt, blue cheese salad dressing, easy blue cheese salad, healthy blue cheese dressing recipes, homemade blue cheese dressing, how to make blue cheese dressing
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Rosemary Parmesan Chips

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Yield: 40 Chips | Total Time: 20 Minutes

When Mark and I switched to a diet lower in carbs, I must admit that giving up potato chips (and corn chips) was especially hard. 

I am a big fan of all kinds of chips, especially the heavily seasoned, super salty ones. What am I going to do now when the salt craving strikes?

When I need a salt fix, I grab these rosemary parmesan chips, which are a whole lot healthier than the regular, store-bought chips. Parmesan is a little salty by nature… so that means – salt craving fixed! 

This rosemary parmesan chips recipe is completely sugar-free. Yeah, a sugar-free snack that is really yummy, and easy to make at home. Plus, they keep well so you can make a big batch, divvy them up into small ziplock bags, and ta-dah! They are a ready grab-and-go snack for busy days. 

I used rosemary as a natural seasoning in this recipe, but feel free to use whatever you like or happen to have on hand. Some great options are sea salt and cracked pepper, dill weed and garlic powder (a great ranch-style chip), and if you really want to get creative, substitute cheddar for the parmesan and dip them in sour cream. 

Hmmmmmmm! …Potato who?


Rosemary Parmesan Chips

Total Time: 20 Minutes

Prep: 5 Minutes / Cook: 15 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Preheat the oven to 375F. Move the top shelf in the oven to its highest rack. 

3. In a bowl, thoroughly mix together all the ingredients. Scoop out about a half of a tablespoon-sized amount of cheese mixture and drop it onto the parchment-lined cookie sheet. Repeat, making sure that the cheese is evenly spaced on the cookie sheet – about 2 inches apart.

4. Bake on the top shelf of the oven for 15 minutes. Chips will flatten out and should be bubbling and slightly brown when done. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before carefully removing them to a plate. Repeat with the remaining cheese mix.

5. Store in ziplock bags or an airtight container.

HELPFUL TIP!

Don’t substitute the parchment paper with anything else, like tin foil or wax paper. I made this mistake and learned the hard way by having to throw out a whole batch of chips! Wax paper melts right into the chips and you won’t get it off of them no matter how hard you try. Foil isn’t any better, it will fuse to the chips and you will have a dickens of a time getting it off. Think of how you could be spending that time doing other, more fun things, like eating your freshly made parmesan chips. Take my advice on this one! (You can use the same piece of parchment as long as it is not torn or soaked through with grease.) 

Homemade Rosemary Parmesan Crisps Are Low Carb Snacks

Rosemary Parmasan Chips

This easy low carb snack recipe uses only three ingredients. Rosemary parmesan crisps are the ultimate healthy snack with no preservatives or chemicals if you make them at home. Only three ingredients!
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Snack
Servings 40 Chips
Calories 85 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 cups grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Preheat the oven to 375F. Move the top shelf in the oven to its highest rack. 
  • In a bowl, thoroughly mix together all the ingredients. Scoop out about a half of a tablespoon-sized amount of cheese mixture and drop it onto the parchment-lined cookie sheet. Repeat, making sure that the cheese is evenly spaced on the cookie sheet – about 2 inches apart.
  • Bake on the top shelf of the oven for 15 minutes. Chips will flatten out and should be bubbling and slightly brown when done. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before carefully removing them to a plate. Repeat with the remaining cheese mix.
  • Store in ziplock bags or an airtight container.

Notes

Don’t substitute the parchment paper with anything else, like tin foil or wax paper. I made this mistake and learned the hard way by having to throw out a whole batch of chips! Wax paper melts right into the chips and you won’t get it off of them no matter how hard you try. Foil isn’t any better, it will fuse to the chips and you will have a dickens of a time getting it off. Think of how you could be spending that time doing other, more fun things, like eating your freshly made parmesan chips. Take my advice on this one! (You can use the same piece of parchment as long as it is not torn or soaked through with grease.) 
Keyword easy recipes, homemade keto chips, low carb snacks, rosemary parmesan crisps
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Keto Mozzarella Sticks with Almond Flour

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Yield: 24 Sticks | Total Time: 35 Minutes

Who doesn’t love a great appetizer course that includes deep fried mozzarella sticks? If you are on the keto diet, however, this may be hard to find at your local bar or restaurant.

With this recipe, you can bring America’s favorite appetizer home. It is easy enough to make, and you can make it ahead of time and keep a stash in the freezer for when the mozzarella stick craving strikes.

Learning how to make keto mozzarella sticks is fun. I feel like such a chef when I mess up my entire countertop making these! The kids will love to help you roll the sticks in the ‘breading’, too, so call them on into the kitchen!

The best part about this recipe is that it is completely keto. Each stick weighs in at less than 2 grams carbs, or 4% in the macros breakdown. 

The next time you throw a party at your house and you have guests coming that are on the keto diet, you can serve them these low carb mozzarella sticks. In fact, you can serve them to everyone. They are so tasty, you’ll never miss the carbs.


Keto Mozzarella Sticks with Almond Flour

Total Time: 35 Minutes

Prep: 25 Minutes / Cook: 10 Minutes (Does not include overnight freezing time.)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup brown flax meal
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream, plus more
  • 24 pieces string cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • canola oil, for frying

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. In a large bowl, mix together the first eight ingredients. Add a large spoon to the bowl for dispensing mixture into a shallow bowl (see step 5 below).

2. In a separate bowl, toss the string cheese with the 2 tablespoons heavy cream. Make sure they are completely coated!

3. In a third bowl, beat the eggs with a splash of heavy cream.

4. Fill a fourth (large) bowl with water and have a towel nearby. You will need this to clean your hands between coating each of the sticks of cheese. Trust me – you will appreciate having this nearby! Set a fifth bowl, a shallow one, next to the bowl with the flour mixture.

5. Spoon about a quarter cup of the dry mix into the shallow bowl. Roll one cheese stick in the seasoned dry mix. Quickly dunk it into the egg mixture, shake off the excess, then return it to the dry mix and roll it around until it is completely coated with the dry mix. Don’t forget to coat the ends! Set the stick on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper and repeat with the remaining 23 sticks, adding more dry mix to the shallow bowl when needed. If the dry mix gets packed to the bottom of the bowl, break it up with a spoon. (It is important that you use the dry mix in small batches or it will get too moist and won’t adhere to the cheese.)

6. Freeze the mozzarella sticks overnight, then transfer them to a large ziplock bag until ready to use. 

7. To prepare the mozzarella sticks, add enough canola oil into a large pot so that it is 2 inches deep. Heat the oil over medium-high until it is very hot and just beginning to smoke. Don’t worry, once you add the frozen cheese sticks in, the oil will cool a bit. Drop the mozzarella sticks into the hot oil so that they are not crowding the pan, you may have to fry them in batches. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes, then use a slotted spoon to very carefully remove them to a plate lined with paper towels.

8. Serve immediately with sugar-free Homemade Chunky Marinara Sauce.

Low Carb Keto Mozzarella Sticks
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