Thursday, September 30, 2010

Low Carb Breakfast: Egg Muffins with Ham and Spinach

I don't know about you, but we are busy busy busy over here. I am finding it difficult to find time to eat breakfast, let alone time to cook one. And as much as I love my low carb chocolate cake muffins, sometimes I want something different.

Enter these egg muffins. They are based on a recipe from Mark's Daily Apple, although I've modified it a bit. They make a perfect on-the-go breakfast.I can quickly heat them in the microwave and eat them in the car as I drive the toddler to preschool.

These muffins are a bit tricky to make, so be sure to read my tips on how to get them in and out of the pan.


-9 eggs
-1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
-Deli ham
-Pam non stick spray


1.Saute the onions until brown, add spinach and cook until wilted. To save time, I double the amount of onion and spinach and I freeze half for the next time I make these muffins. (You can also skip the spinach if you don't have it, but do try to include the onions as they impart a nice flavor.)

2.In a large pourable measuring glass (like this one) beat your eggs.

3. Add parmesan, cheese, spinach and onions.

4.Spray muffin tin with Pam. Generously.

5.Place aluminum muffin cups in tin and spray inside of cups with Pam. Trust me. You need to do this.

6.Place ham in bottom of muffin cup. Try to get it to form a cup for the egg, but don't panic if the ham doesn't cooperate. About half the time, the ham ends up in a heap at the bottom of the cup. It's just an aesthetic thing, it doesn't affect taste, so unless you're cooking for the queen don't worry about it.

7.Pour egg batter into ham. This can be tricky, which is why you're using a large Pyrex type measuring cup with a spout. The pour spout keeps this from being a huge mess. Don't use a ladle, that's how I started and I ended up egging my kitchen like a teenager on Devil's Night.

8.Bake for 20-25 minutes at 350F.

9.Remove from pan and peel off baking cups asap once the muffins are done. Yes, they are a little hot so watch your fingers, but you have to get those cups off the muffins before they cool and stick.

Note that some people skip the baking cups and just use the muffin pan. I am going to try that, but it will take a lot of Pam to keep the eggs from sticking like barnacles.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Low Carb Meal Plan: Buffalo Chicken Dinner

The picture looks good, the meal itself was just okay. Not my favorite, but enjoyable in its own way. No real recipe here. Just cook your chicken and then add melted butter to hot sauce for the sauce. Cut your veggies and serve with bleu cheese dressing.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Some Low Carb Food Links

Looking for low carb snack and dessert ideas? Low Carb Tips: Snacks and Sweets is a great article listing a ton of options.

Looking for low carb recipes? Here's the scoop on Where to Find Recipes for Low Carb Meals.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Low Carb Snacks: Jalapeno Poppers

Here's a picture of my jalapeno poppers. Recipe can be found here.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Coleslaw Recipes: Moderate Carb Red Cabbage Coleslaw

I recently purchased the cookbook Simply Salads by Jennifer Chandler looking for salad inspiration and boy, did I find it! This snazzy little cookbook will make anyone drool …over salad!

Here’s my version of her Mandarin Orange Slaw. This coleslaw has a nice sweet ‘n’ sour flavor note that is perfect for Fall with its own contrast of lightly warm days alternated by cooler-than-we- would-like nights. (I heart food metaphors.) It's not pristine low carb, but it's okay as a treat or during weight loss maintenance.

Note that that all recipes in Simply Salads use pre-packaged sliced and diced lettuce and cabbage. You don’t have to do that as it can be more expensive, but…In the case of coleslaw, unless you have a serious food processor, it’s probably a good idea to buy the pre-shredded cabbage. I did not and it was a little chunkier than I would’ve liked.

Also, this recipe is not necessarily cheap, however, I did have all the ingredients on hand except for the cabbage. So a well-stocked pantry made this recipe pretty inexpensive. For instance, mandarin oranges ARE super expensive unless you buy them in bulk at a club store like Sam's or Costco--I figure mine cost about $1 which is not bad.


-1 bag shredded red cabbage

-½ cup sliced green onions

-1 cup carrots, shaved or finely julienned

-½ cup dried cranberries

-1 cup Mandarin orange slices

-2 tbsps crushed almonds


Chop and combine ingredients in a large bowl.


-¼ cup Splenda brown sugar

-¼ cup red wine vinegar

-2 tbsp Mandarin orange juice

-½ cup vegetable oil


Combine dressing ingredients and mix. Pour over coleslaw. You can serve this immediately, but it’s better if you can let it marinate in the fridge for an hour or so.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Updated Low Carb Chocolate Cake for Breakfast Muffin Recipe

I've been making these muffins for several months now and am constantly irritated with how I originally wrote the recipe. So disorganized and confusing. Sorry.

Here's a revamp that I hope makes more sense. Ingredients are now listed in the order they are used which should make the recipe easier to follow.


-1/2 stick butter OR 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil OR grapeseed oil

-1/4 cup Splenda brown sugar blend (I also use 1/2 cup sometimes, depending on mood, makes for a lighter crumb texture.) (You can also use 1/4 cup regular brown sugar and 1 mashed banana if you want to avoid artificial sweeteners.)

-1/3 cup water

-3 eggs

-1 tbsp vanilla

-Dash of salt

-1/2 cup cocoa powder

-2 tsps baking soda

-1 1/2 cups almond flour

-1/2 cup ground flax

-1/2 cup Ghiradelli chocolate chips 60% cocoa


1. Preheat oven to 350F

2. Mix butter and splenda. Add in eggs, vanilla, water and salt.

3.Once all the wet ingredients are combined, add cocoa powder, baking soda, almond flour and flax.

4.Once the batter is well mixed, add chocolate chips.

5.Assess batter texture. You want a wet, soft dough, kind of mousse-y in texture. If the batter seems dry, add a little more water.

6.Bake for 20 minutes, but check at the 15 minute mark. These can overbake fast so keep an eye on them.

I store these in the fridge and reheat in the microwave for 18 seconds in the morning. They will keep for almost 2 weeks in the fridge.

Serve plain or with cool whip for a flourless cake effect. Top with raspberries if you really want to blow your mind. If you want to be really bad, serve over low carb ice cream OR top with nutella, or both. Nutella in small amounts is acceptable in terms of carb count.

These muffins are healthy (cocoa powder is full of antioxidants and almonds are good for your heart) but also really lend themselves to tasting like a really sinful dessert. Which makes them perfect for a low carb diet.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Simple Italian Peppers

NOTE: Sorry for the long silence. I am having continual issues with my health that make me slow and tired. Sorry! I do have posts written and scheduled for the rest of the month so check back often as there should be something new up every couple of days.

I recently had Italian Stuffed Peppers as an appetizer at a restaurant; they were lovely, warm and filling, the kind of food that makes cold weather feel cozy. So I set about trying to recreate the recipe. I found a version of this on, but it was a super busy recipe that involved steaming the peppers and doing all sorts of extra busy work, which who has time for that?

So not only did I want to recreate the recipe, I wanted to keep it simple and I think I’ve done that.

Because Italian sausage can get expensive, I use zucchini as a meat extender to give us all more bang for our buck. Since the sausage is so heavily spiced, no one will notice the zucchini which also happens to make it easier to sneak in veggies for your picky eaters.


-Sweet peppers OR Hot Hungarian peppers if you want some heat. You’ll want at least 4 which, when cut, will yield 8 servings. For leftovers increase the quantity to 6-8 peppers.

-1 package sweet or hot Italian sausage (usually contains 5 links) or 1.5lbs ground sausage without casing

-Diced onion

-Minced garlic

-1 egg

-1/4 cup Parmsean cheese

-1 cup grated zucchini

-Spaghetti sauce (1 jar if you’re only using 4 peppers, 2 jars if using more.)

-Shredded mozzarella


1.Slice and clean the peppers. Try to get them sliced so that they’ll comfortably hold meat—sometimes that can be tricky depending on pepper shape. If using Hungarian Hot peppers, please wear gloves to keep the oil off your skin. I don’t find these peppers to be hot for eating, but they sure do burn my eyes and skin.

2.Place peppers in casserole dish.

3.Grate the zucchini and set aside.

4.Remove casing from sausages and set aside.

5.In a large mixing bowl, beat your egg and then add; onion, garlic, parmesan cheese, zucchini and sausage. Mix well.

6.Place sausage mix inside peppers. If you run out of peppers and still have meat, just make meatballs and put them next to the peppers.

7.Top the peppers with spaghetti sauce.

8.Bake at 350F for 50-60 minutes.

9.Top with cheese for the last 5 minutes of cooking.
Serve hot from the oven and enjoy the melded flavors of peppers, tomatoes, and sausage.