Monday, May 25, 2015

Lettuce Leaf Tacos

For those on a low-carb kick that love Mexican but want to avoid all the carbs in taco shells, try this alternative for taco night. It uses lettuce leaves instead of taco shells to make a dish that's halfway between a lettuce wrap and a taco. Low on carbs and still delicious! To make them ever healthier click here for an easy recipe for Homemade Taco Seasoning

Helpful tip:   Using a pastry blender is a great way to break up ground meat into tiny fine pieces.  I discovered this tip years ago and it works great especially in a recipe like this where you want the meat to be crumbly.
      
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Ingredients:
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped 
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey 
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 1 tomato, chopped 
  • 1 avocado, peeled and diced 
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 8 large romaine lettuce leaves
Directions:
  1. Cook ground turkey in olive oil with onion and bell pepper.  Break up ground turkey into little pieces with a spatula or a pastry blender.   Add taco seasoning and simmer until meat is cooked thoroughly. 
  2. Fill each romaine lettuce leaf with about 2 tablespoons meat filling; top with shredded cheddar cheese, chopped tomato and avocado ( or whatever your favorites toppings are)

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Homemade Taco Seasoning


Once I discovered how easy it is to make taco seasoning at home I will never go back to buying those packets at the store.  Homemade taco seasoning is so easy to make and tastes really great too!  It is also healthier than those store-bought packets that contain added preservatives.  I usually make a double batch of this and store it in an air tight container to keep on hand to use in recipes.  I hope you enjoy this easy peasy recipe!

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Makes 1 ounce
Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
Directions:
  1. In a small bowl, mix together chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, oregano, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. Store in an airtight container.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Caprese Appetizer Bites


If  you have an over abundance of cherry tomatoes and fresh basil from your garden this summer, this is a great way to use them up.  Low carb and healthy too!  Great for parties or just for snacking.  They make a beautiful presentation but are super easy to make. These yummy little treats are a healthier alternative to snacking on chips and dip.  I found these tiny little mozzarella cheese balls in the deli section of the grocery store.  If you can't find the cheese in this little size you can always slice larger pieces of fresh mozzarella down to the same size as the tomatoes.   Tomatoes are a great  source of  vitamins C and potassium.  Basil has been shown to reduce inflammation and both basil and tomatoes are heart healthy.  So what's not to love about this delicious and healthy appetizer?
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Ingredients:
  •  1 pint cherry tomatoes
  •  4 ounces small mozzarella cheese balls
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
  • 3/4 ounce fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • toothpicks or skewers
Directions:
Toss tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, olive oil, chopped basil, salt, and pepper together in a bowl until well coated. Skewer  mozzarella cheese balls and tomatoes with fresh basil leaves in between. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Green beans with Mushrooms and Bacon


This is a delicious green bean side dish or you may call them string beans.  This dish can be made with either fresh or frozen green beans.  The mushrooms and bacon really jazz up this side dish and make it very tasty.  Green beans are a fat-free and a low calorie vegetable that are also a good source of vitamin A which is good for your eyes.  They are also high in vitamin K that is important for strong bones.  Green beans are also a good source of vitamin C and fiber. This recipe could also easily be made vegetarian by leaving out the bacon. Hope you enjoy this delicious and healthy recipe!

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Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 (8 ounce) package sliced white mushrooms
  • 1 teaspoon minced onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons crumbled cooked bacon
  • 1 pinch lemon-pepper seasoning
  • 1 pinch seasoned salt
  • 1 cup frozen green beans
 Directions:
1.  Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat; cook and stir mushrooms, onion, and garlic until mushrooms are slightly tender, about 5 minutes. Stir bacon, lemon pepper, and seasoned salt into onion mixture; cook until mushrooms are tender, 5 to 10 more minutes.
2.  Stir green beans into mushroom mixture; cook, stirring occasionally, until green beans are softened and cooked through, 5 to 10 minutes.