low carbs

Keto, Low Carb & Quarantine

I want to start by saying that Keto is not for everyone. It’s a diet that takes a LOT of planning. It takes a LOT of tracking. You have to be on top of things or you are not doing the keto diet.

I was doing keto and basically maintaining at this point, not losing, which was frustrating in a lot of ways.

Then this covid-19 thing happened and things changed. Suddenly, the grocery store felt like a battle ground. You had to wear a mask, wipe everything down, try to avoid touching things as much as you can, avoid people…we were working from home and I was only going to the grocery store about every 9-12 days instead of weekly (or twice a week).

So my buying habits had to change. We were pretty stocked up on proteins because of Costco (in our freezer we have: frozen chicken thighs, burger patties, pork chops, salmon, shrimp, scallops, bratwursts). I had frozen veggies (cauliflower rice, green beans, cauliflower mash, etc). But fresh produce does not last long so I had to be creative.

For awhile there eggs were hard to find in my grocery store. We were never OUT of them but had to ration (now stores have them fully stocked).

So for breakfasts I rotate: one day I do my plain greek yogurt with blueberries (frozen, from Costco, defrosted) with almonds, chia seeds and keto granola. Another day I will do keto toast with cream cheese or avocado and two fried or scrambled eggs. Sometimes Michael will make a hash (sauteed sweet potatoes topped with smoked salmon, arugula and fried eggs). Logan has frozen waffles, eggs, toast with applesauce or fruit or oatmeal. He’s also on a rotation. πŸ™‚

Dinners are largely the same when we were doing keto but once a week we are doing a pasta or rice dish to help stretch the pantry items and make it so I don’t need to go to the grocery store as often. One night I wanted an easy dinner and made rice, beans, avocado, salsa, with sour cream and jalapenos. Basically a vegetarian bowl. Another night we had pasta with cajun shrimp.

It’s definitely harder to stick to a keto or low carb diet during the quarantine because we can’t have fresh items as often. And we have to be creative with meals sometimes. I do see a lot of keto people sticking to it, and I commend them.

So far in the 6 or so weeks that I’ve been home I’ve been working out 5 days a week still and I gained 2-3 pounds. I guess from eating carbs. There are days here and there where I am a little “snacky” and eat junk (like crackers or chips) but I try not to buy junk food at all to not have the temptation in the house!

I have started up doing sourdough bread again.

Which is fun. It’s something to do as a family, too. Logan helped!

And Michael even tried his hand at doing his very own loaf!

It’s been a struggle with the weight and exercise thing (more mentally than anything). But right now is not the time to focus on that–now is the time to give ourselves grace and be patient with ourselves while the world is a scary place.

QUESTION: How has your diet/exercise mentality changed during the covid-19 pandemic?

Keto Dinner Recipes

Here is another post of some decent and excellent recipes we’ve tried lately! If you have some favorites, please leave a comment with the link!

Recipe #1 – Paleo Beef and BroccoliΒ 

We made this recipe recently and it turned out ok. I am sharing it because I want to make it again with a few minor changes because I think it could be better. The first issue with the recipe: it was WAY too salty. DO NOT add the salt that is in the recipe. it does not need it. Whenever I do a recipe that calls for soy sauce, I never add the salt that the recipe calls for because it doesn’t need it. I don’t know why I didn’t listen to my gut on this one this time. But I followed the recipe and added the salt and it was just too much.

The second issue I had with the recipe was the serving sizes. It said it was 4 servings and it was not. Maybe if you have it with rice (or cauliflower rice to make it keto-friendly) but it was really 3 servings.

So again, I’d make this recipe again but I’d modify it and not add any salt.

Recipe #2 – Garlic Butter Chicken Bites

I had some leftover chicken tenders from the curry soup I made recently and so I looked around for a quick and easy chicken skillet recipe I could do for lunch when I was working from home. I found one on Instagram and so I made this marinade and it turned out SUPER tasty! It was really really good. I didn’t do the zoodles with the recipe, just the chicken. I added it to my salad and then I had some leftover for lunch the next day.

Recipe #3 – Crispy Buffalo Tofu

This was really tasty! I had it for lunch, actually. And I had it with blue cheese dressing as a dip instead of the avocado dip in the recipe. It was pretty good. The next day I reheated the leftovers in the skillet with avocado oil (instead of ghee) and it got a lot crispier the second time around and I liked it even better. I would definitely make this recipe again!

Recipe #4 – Chicken and Goat Cheese Skillet

I made a few alterations to make it keto-friendly. First, I used heavy cream instead of milk per the recipe. I also skipped the rice and pasta, obviously.

Second, I didn’t have plum tomatoes so a used a bunch of grape tomatoes. I also had half a zucchini I threw into the skillet to use up. Overall, I liked the recipe. It was creamy and fresh. I liked using the veggies. It wasn’t high in fat (keto) but it was a low carb recipe and a healthy recipe. Michael liked it a lot. I thought it was a little on the plain side. I think I would make it again and add some more spices, maybe sautΓ© some onions, too. I’d definitely make it again, though!

Recipe #5 – Naked Fish Tacos

This one was a winner! I really really liked it a lot! I added some raw radishes to the coleslaw mix. I also added some fresh grape tomatoes, black olives and topped everything with cojita cheese. It turned out great! I would definitely make this again and I can see it being in our rotation on a regular basis. You could also make it with chicken or shrimp and it would be good, too, I think.

Happy cooking!