Where to Start: Prepping the Kitchen


So the kitchen is going to be your new best friend when you go all in on whatever WOE you choose. I don’t know about you, but before I went low-carb, I spent a lot of time eating in my car. Fast food drive-thrus were my best friends. Greasy wrappers littered my car’s floors and my refrigerator was almost empty…except for last night’s take home containers.

Preparation is key when starting out. One of the main things I did was cleared all of the junk out of my kitchen. Anything with wheat and sugar was placed in a bag. I gave these evil foods to a few friends for their enjoyment. Pasta, bread, fruit (at first), chips, juices, potatoes, chips, popcorn (oh, my salty favorite!!!)…EVERYTHING that was not on the acceptable food list was OUT!

I have so many websites with GREAT recipes that are low-carb and easy to make. I really try to think of what I want to make for the next week or so before I go shopping. At first I kept my menu fairly simple consisting of chicken, salad, and veggies. As I learned what I liked and disliked, I was able to expand my recipe repertoire.

Then I went shopping. I wrote a few posts ago what I keep in my pantry and fridge. You can read it here. I shop mostly on the outer aisles in the grocery store…produce, meats, and dairy. With the exception of the frozen department, there’s really not much I need from the inner aisles. I always make sure I have easy and quick snacks for on the go.

Again, I have to reiterate the importance of ENJOYING what you eat. If you hate the food, this is not going to work. I encourage people to try some new things every once in a while. Pallets really change after removing processed, sugary, carby foods. Get a little adventurous and try a new veggie or recipe every now and then. That’s how I fell in love with my cauliflower pizza (read about it here)!


Football and Pizza

Pizza 1.7.13

Who doesn’t love a little pizza while watching the big game???

First off, let me be clear…I HAVE NEVER FELT DEPRIVED while on the low-carb lifestyle. I have learned how to make many of my favorite dishes from BLC (before low-carb) into tasty low-carb concoctions.

Who knew that cream cheese and eggs could be used to make a puffy, pudding/bready dish?

Need bread crumbs??? Grated parmesan cheese (in the green can) works great as a binder.

Have a recipe that calls for breading??? I’ve become a big fan of protein smothered with mayo, rolled in crushed pork rinds, and finished off baked in the oven.

There was one thing I will admit to missing for the first several months after going LC…PIZZA!!! I saw a few recipes out there that seemed too difficult or too “out there” for me to try. A lot of the reviews on a forum I follow complained that the “crust” was soggy and it was impossible to pick up a slice.

Finally, I said, “Screw the reviews, let’s see what all the fuss is about with this cauliflower crust!” Yes, you read that right, cauliflower for a pizza crust! In fact, there are only 2 other main ingredients…mozzarella cheese and eggs. Of course a few spices and seasonings need to be added, but those are so subjective.

One of my favorite websites, Your Lighter Side, is to be credited with this amazing find. The author of this blog/website stated that her family couldn’t tell the crust was made with cauliflower. Really?!?! I had to try it! Here is a link to the Cauliflower Crust recipe that I used…please note that I used different toppings than listed in the linked recipe.

Are you ready for the ingredients???

2 C riced cauliflower (can be done using a cheese grater or food processor)
2 C shredded mozzarella cheese
2 large eggs
1 t garlic powder
1 t onion powder
Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Herbal Pizza & Pasta Magic (sprinkle on top of crust before placing in the oven)

Combine first 5 ingredients in a mixing bowl until well incorporated. Form into a round crust on a buttered cookie sheet. Bake at 425 degrees until crust is golden brown. I had to put foil around the edge of the crust so they didn’t get burned about 15 minutes into baking.

Nutritional Information for the entire crust:
calories: 868      fat: 50 g     protein: 82 g     carbohydrates: 26 g     fiber: 10 g
net carbs: 16 g

After the crust finished baking in the oven, I let it sit for about 10 minutes to cool off.

While the crust was baking, I made my own pizza sauce:

1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 1/2 t onion powder
1 1/2 t garlic powder
1 1/2 t dried basil
1 T dried parsley
1/2 packet sugar substitute (or liquid sugar substitute equivalent)
pinch of salt
1/8 t xanthan gum (this will tighten up the sauce…works like cornstarch without the added carbs)

Nutritional Information for entire batch of pizza sauce:

calories: 104     fat: .73 g     protein: 4.5 g     carbohydrates: 27 g     figber: 8 g
net carbs: 19 g

I spread about 2/3 of the pizza sauce on the cooled crust, added my toppings (fresh basil, mushrooms, and ground pork sausage), sprinkled with mozzarella cheese, and placed under broiler for about 5 minutes. Watch carefully while broiling!

Each slice of pizza (8 slices per pizza) comes out to about 4 net carbs with the toppings I chose for tonight’s game! Compare that to 27 net carbs in a piece of Pizza Hut pan pizza…I’ll take my cauliflower crust pizza any day! For those wondering about the taste??? It’s phenomenal! I’ve made this pizza about 3 times in the last month. I’m sure I’ll make it for years to come.