If you’re like me then dinner will probably be your main meal of the day. So For this reason it needs to be satisfying and nutritious. Being on a low carbohydrates diet doesn’t mean that your dinner needs to be any different and we can incorporate many belly fat burning foods.
Once you’ve got to grips with the foods that you can and cannot eat on a low carb diet, you will see that most main meals can be adapted in some way to be made low carb. If you are going to stick to any diet it is important that you enjoy the food you eat and have plenty of variety to stop becoming bored. Here I have made some dinner suggestions to do just that.
When embarking on a low carb diet it is well worth stocking up on a few staple foods first, so that you are never without the right foods. This includes flavorings such as herbs and spices, olive oil, eggs, no-sugar added oil and vinegar dressing and cheeses. A good selection of low carb vegetables in the freezer such as spinach, green beans and diced onion will ensure you always have an accompaniment for your dinner dish.
Depending on the type of diet you are on, some diets allow wholemeal bread, brown rice, wholemeal pita bread and whole meal tortillas. These ingredients can be very useful to add to your meal. These are what are known as complex carbs or good carbs as opposed to simple carbohydrates, which are the bad carbs.
Some low carb diets promote high protein, low carb foods, while others talk about low fat, low carb foods. Whichever type of diet you are following the main bulk of your foods will come from, meat, fish, shell fish, non-starchy vegetables, salad vegetables and some dairy foods. It is surprising just how little you will not be allowed on a low carb diet. If opting for a low fat, low carb diet, then low fat cheeses and very lean meat should be chosen instead of their full fat options.
If wanting a starter with your low carb dinner, making a salad of tomatoes and mozzarella cheese makes a light and tasty starter. If your having a dinner party this can be made to look very impressive by making a tomato and mozzarella tower. Simply place some salad leaves on a plate and alternate slices of tomato drizzled with olive oil with slices of mozzarella. Add some basil leaves for extra flavor.
Another great starter for your diet is soup. Most ready prepared soups are not low carb, but making your own is very simple. A good base for homemade soup is chicken stock made from your left over chicken bones. Place in a pan and cover with water, bring to the boil and simmer for at least 30 minutes, longer if you have time. You can then add to this any combination of low carb vegetables as you like. Mushrooms, peppers and onions make a very satisfying soup.
For the main course of your dinner, meat will probably become the main staple of your diet. If you look at your favorite dishes you will see that many of them can be adapted to suit your diet.
For instance the Sunday roast. You would probably include in your roast dinner, roast meat, potatoes, carrots, green vegetables, cauliflower cheese etc. When cooking a low carb version, the only ingredients you would leave out are the potatoes and the cheese sauce. By adding extra green vegetables and grating some strong cheddar cheese on the cauliflower before grilling it, your meal is much the same as everyone else’s.
Many people assume that being on a low carb diet means no dessert. It can be difficult as ingredients such as sugar and chocolate are off the list. But yet again many recipes can be adjusted to replace sugar with a sweetener or no sugar alternatives. Sugar free jelly is a good stand-by when you fancy something sweet. Low carb cheesecake is a very substantial dinner dessert. But if you want something quick and simple to make, here is 2 deliciously sweet desserts that I have tried.
Strawberry Pecan Whip:
125g sugar free, low calorie strawberry jelly
225ml boiling water
225ml cold water 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 tablespoons pecan pieces, toasted
50ml semi-skimmed ricotta cheese
Dissolve the jelly in the boiling water, stirring until completely dissolved. Add the cold water and place in the refrigerator until partially set. Stir the pecans and vanilla essence into the ricotta cheese. Using a whisk add to the jelly and whip until mixed. Divide between 4 bowls and refrigerate once more to set before serving.
Apricot Almond Custard
6 dried apricots
125ml skimmed milk
1/4 teaspoon almond essence
1 tablespoon flaked almonds
Preheat the oven to 180C /350F. Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil and add the apricots. Boil for 3-4 minutes to re-hydrate them, drain and roughly chop. Place the apricots, milk, sweetener, almond essence and egg in a small bowl and mix together. Divide between 2 ovenproof dishes or ramekins. Sprinkle with the almonds and bake for 30 minutes or until the custard is firm.
Being on a low carb diet is particularly useful if you have to cook for the family and do not want to cook separate meals. By adapting and adjusting some of the ingredients, you can eat many of the same things as the rest of the family. It is important however that you do your research and know your low carb foods. If buying packaged foods read the labels first to check the carbohydrate content. Some foods contain surprisingly high carbohydrate levels. Getting a carbohydrates list can be useful, either from a diet book or online.
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