I’ve been meaning to try this recipe adapted from a collection of similar recipes. I happened to notice that our local grocer had riced cauliflower on sale and thought I would use the opportunity to make a little “comfort food” for this chilly Sunday afternoon. The texture of the diced cauliflower simulates the texture of rice or noodles. It’s certainly not exactly like my original version of mac and cheese that my family has grown to love, but it’s close enough for carb concious gals like me.
Creamy Low-Carb Mac and Cheese
1- 12 ounce bag riced cauliflower
3/4 cup cream or half and half
2 oz cream cheese
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
Steam or microwave riced cauliflower as directed. Pat dry with paper towels. Spray 13X9″ baking pan with non-stick spray. In a small saucepan bring cream to a simmer, add cream cheese stirring until cream cheese melts. Add dry mustard powder, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder; whisk to incorporate. Turn off heat and add 1 cup of shredded cheddar cheese slowly, stirring well to incorporate. Put cauliflower into prepared casserole dish, evenly pour cheese sauce over cauliflower. Sprinkle the last 1/2 cup of cheese over the top. Bake at 375 degrees until topping is melted and beginning to brown, or about 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.
As we move into mid November/December, the holiday season ushers in a plethora of tempting chocolatey treats, sweetly seasoned baked goods, and a bounty of party trays that seem to line the expanse of grocery store isles all over the country. As the season of eating (and over-eating) begins, I am forever looking for recipes that will help me to stay away from the carb-laden sweet treats that show up everywhere. Yesterday, while I was shopping for a few pantry staples, my neighborhood grocery store shared with customers an array of cakes, pies, and pastry samples. Turning every corner of each isle offered a new taste of tempting delicacies including shrimp cocktail, hot sugary beverages, hors d’oeuvres, and various sweet treats. Store owners even offered a full Thanksgiving lunch with all the trimmings so that customers could sample the items and entice them to place early dinner orders for upcoming holiday gatherings. Food, food, and more food…Yikes!
As an alternative, this Peanut Butter Mini-Loaf is one of the recipes that I turn to for a small sample of low-carb deliciousness that has no flour, a slight bit of sweetener, and a portion size that is certainly doable. I use peanut butter with ingredients that include only peanuts and less than 1% of salt. (I use the Smucker’s brand in the glass jar.) Sometimes I mix a 1/2 cup of cinnamon with a packet of sweeter to make my own version of cinnamon sugar. I store it in an airtight container and sprinkle a bit of it over the top of a buttered slice. Oh my, simply delicious…
Low Carb Peanut Butter Mini Loaf
1 cup natural peanut butter, creamy
3 large eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vinegar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 individual packets sweetener
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 1 quart mini loaf pan or 2-3X5″ loaf pans. In a medium bowl, combine beaten eggs and peanut butter. With a spatula, mix until smooth. Add vinegar, baking soda and sweetener. Hand whisk until smooth and creamy. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan(s). Bake for 30-35 minutes until bread is fully cooked and toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely before slicing into thin slices with a sharp knife.
While most households were gobbling up lots of carb-laden snacks and appetizers this past Sunday, we watched the Super Bowl while munching on this delightful Low-Carb Taco Casserole. I used to make this recipe without the added Doritos chips but I find the crust to be a bit more crunchy and a lot less low-carb tasting… just by added 3 little chips to the mix. I looked up the nutritional facts for Doritos and calculated that 11 chips equal 16 grams of carbohydrates so you can do the math to figure how many carbs exist in just 3 crumbled chips. Boy, those chips add a world of difference to the crust. You be the judge… It’s totally up to you if you’d like to omit the chips. …Hope you enjoy this simple recipe that’s packed with flavor!
Low-Carb Taco Bake
For the crust:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup half & half
1/2 package taco seasoning mix
8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
3 Doritos chips, crumbled
For the topping:
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 package taco seasoning
1/4 cup tomato sauce
2 tablespoons green chilies, optional
1/2 cup tomato, diced
8 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9×13″ baking dish; set aside.
To make the crust: Beat the cream cheese and eggs until smooth. Add the half & half and taco seasoning, mix well. Spread the cheddar cheese over the bottom of the baking dish. Spread the egg mixture evenly over the cheese. Sprinkle crumbled Doritos over egg mixture. Bake at 375ºF, 25-30 minutes or until golden brown on the edges. Let stand 5 minutes.
To make the topping: Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Brown the ground beef until no longer pink; drain thoroughly. Stir in the taco seasoning, tomato sauce and chiles. Spread over the crust. Top with diced tomato and shredded cheese. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Cool slightly before cutting into serving-sized squares.