Category Archives: Low Carb Tips

Thoughts from The Low Carb Grocery

It’s always funny to see people you know from work or school outside of where you usually see each other. I’m sure I can’t be the only one who has avoided someone they know in public because I don’t feel my best that day.

Recently I was doing my regular grocery shopping at my local grocery store (fun fact, Low Carb Employees do shop at regular stores too), when I happened to bump into one of our regular customers. Obviously I just wanted to run and hide down the next isle as this happened to be the day I thought “I wont see anyone I know, I’ll just throw on this over sized sweater and some shorts” to do all my errands.

It took her a moment recognize me outside of my uniform, but we quickly started to chat about our week.  As the conversation continued I noticed she kept glancing in my cart. I didn’t really think anything of it until she said:

“I have to say I am surprised you have these items in your cart! I always figured you guys just told us what we should be picking up at your store, I had no idea you ate low carb as well!”

To be honest for some reason I thought this comment was a little funny at first. I’ve seen some of our regular customers outside of the store, but none of them have ever commented on what I was eating or doing at that time.

Recently some of you might have noticed on our home page we have changed our video from a video about our company and employees to a beautiful video about some of the challenges that our customers faced either before or during their diet. I thought this was a great video as it’s a way to show that we’re all struggling at some point with either weight gain or keeping at the weight we want to be!

I think as a community we as the Low Carb Grocery stand united in that we all want to be healthy; this is our lifestyle.  We all want to feel included in something bigger than just our own diets.  One of the best things is that on our Facebook page there seems to always be a steady stream of compliments, recipes and words of encouragement to both the store and to other low carbers!

I suppose as summer comes to a close and we return either back to work or back to school it gets easier to sink back into the “I’ll just grab something on the way” , “I don’t have time to prep anything for dinner there are too many things to do” or my personal mantra “I don’t have time for breakfast” routines.  Although I know these are easier alternatives to the sometimes challenging Low Carb Lifestyles we at the Low Carb Grocery  just wanted to let all of you know that we are here for you every step of the way. ( We do not however provide meal plans and or endorse one low carb diet over another:) we simply share what recipes/ tips and tricks we have used in our lives!)

Some fun/ Quick Tips to help with day to day Low Carbing:

-When finding recipes online try using the word “quick”, these typically bring up faster easier day to day recipes
-Drink a lot of water! Everyone knows we need water to function, but did you know it’s shown to help with weight loss *
-Don’t skip breakfast. Period. If you’re busy in the morning try making a quick shake to take with you! About Time is my personal favourite. ( If anyone has tried the birthday cake please tell me what it’s like!)
-Talk to others about what they do and how they are finding their journey going.

 

Most importantly remember that we’re here to help you! We really understand your challenges and want to see you succeed in a healthier life!

*according to http://www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/does-drinking-water-help-you-lose-weight

3 Minute Low Carb Soba Style Noodles in Ponzu

miracle-noodle-ponzu-finalThis is a refreshing cold noodle dish that closely resembles Japanese soba noodles. It can be prepared in just a few minutes and a few of the staff here enjoy Miracle Noodles (angel hair) this way for a quick and satisfying lunch.

We like this noodle because it can be made quickly without cooking! You just need some hot water and some items from the fridge.

OK, … that green stuff on top is really a chopped salad leaf that we added for colour. It really should be chives or cilantro, but you get the point. Ain’t it pretty?

Miracle noodles are made from Konjac and is also known as shirataki noodle (we have a broad selection of other types). They have zero calories and zero carbs. Most of the mass that the noodle has comes from water bonded to the fibre. When you eat the noodles, the fibre helps you feel full and help slows down the glycemic response of other foods you have with it. domain dns info .  The noodles are flavourless and can be served in a broth, in a ponzu sauce (as shown here), baked, or stir fried.

miracle-noodle-ponzu-step1The noodles are sold in a liquid pouch. Strange, but that is how they are made and the alkaline solution helps the noodles keep their form while making them shelf stable. The alkaline solution is infamous for its salty or even fishy smell. It will smell bit off…. but all you need to do is rinse it out as shown here.

 

 

 

miracle-noodle-ponzu-step2In a bowl, soak the noodles in hot water. We have a hot water dispenser in our kitchenette which is really convenient. Hot water on demand.

Unrelated Tip: If you get a reverse-osmosis water filtration system – you never have to de-scale the hot water machine. If you use this type of water for coffee machines, you get better tasting coffee and likewise never have to descale the coffee machine.

Generally, not a fan of drinking only reverse-osmosis water as it lacks essential minerals that your body probably needs. But that’s a topic for another blog post.

miracle-noodle-ponzu-step3Remove hot water and add ponzu sauce. Check the ingredients and nutrition facts to ensure that the sauce you buy does not have added sugar. Doris, our customer service manager, mixes her own and we will try to get her to unveil her recipe in a future post.

But here is the secret – because we did not do a full par-boil of the miracle noodles, you might find that the noodles still have a hint of the alkaline solution. So……………

 

miracle-noodle-ponzu-step4We add about a tablespoon of The Garlic Box Apple Cider and Garlic Vinaigrette to the dish which adds an amazing tangy-ness and also does a great job of clearing up the alkaline (perhaps because acid + alkaline = neutral?)

Anyway, it works wonderfully! Optionally add chives, cilantro, and/or some protein like chicken strips.

Enjoy!

 

A 3 Minute Low Carb Salad

Originally posted on facebook - this garnered a lot of interest and feedback. Its such a simple thing – I was really surprised. Perhaps that’s why it got so much attention in the first place. current time . One of the best things about low carb is the great selection of foods, amazing taste (read: healthy fats), and how simple it can be to make satisfying meals.

a-3-min-salad

“A 3 minute low-carb lunch. This is what I have several times a week. Pre-cooked chicken strips from Costco, prewashed salad greens, The Garlic Box Apple Cider and Garlic Vinaigrette (one of the best dressings ever made), and a slice of double cream brie cheese. Sometimes I’ll add a few cherry tomatoes. More nutritious and cheaper than eating outside.”

For those who are not aware, Apple Cider is a natural food that aids in weight loss and provides many other health benefits. Garlic as well – provides many benefits for boosting the immune system. An apple cider and garlic vinaigrette is heaven!

At the store, we keep a large bin of store-bought, pre-washed mixed greens, baby romain, spinach, or whatever we feel like that week. The chicken is Pinty’s Oven Roasted Chicken Breast Strips from Costco which is pre-cooked, pre-seasoned, and are naturally low in carbs. We like brie cheese here, so we keep a slab around that we cut from. Easy, because you just combine and add dressing.  For variety, add olives, or cherry tomatoes, or sliced hard boiled eggs.

Low Carb Mini Doughnut Brownies

Brownie Doughnut


Finally, a moist fudgy brownie that tastes like a doughnut and looks like it belongs in the most exquisite of bakeries.
This simple recipe is easy to follow, delicious to eat, and an easy way to impress!


For this picture we used Mini Bunt Cake pans.
However you could just as easily use a 8×8 pan for square brownies. The only change would be needing to triple the White Chocolate Glaze recipe to cover the brownie tray.

Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Baking Time: Between 15-50 minutes depending on  the size of brownie tray
Oven Temperature: 400 degrees F
Difficulty: Easy

For the Brownie  you will need the following:
1 Package Doctor Carbrite Fudgy Chocolate Brownie Mix
1/2 cup Coconut Oil (in place of butter called for on back of product)
1 teaspoon Water
3 eggs (these are optional, they will however give your brownies a cakier texture; as well are a great way to get in your protein for the day)
For the White Chocolate Glaze you will need: 
2-3 Bars Ross White Chocolate depending on the amount of glaze you want
1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon Coconut Oil

Baking Equipment:
1 8×8 square baking pan
1 9×13 rectangle baking pan
Optional: Muffin Tins will shorten your baking time, however you do need to keep a closer eye on your brownies. Depending on your Muffin Tin you may also need to find a larger second baking pan than the above 9×13 rectangle for the following steps.

Recipe:
1. Gather all ingredients needed.
2. If using eggs, crack all 3 eggs in a bowl and whisk enough to break the yolks.
3. In a large mixing bowl combine brownie mix,  coconut oil, eggs, and water.
Using an an electric mixer beat for about 30 seconds until ingredients come together.
If mixing by hand,  some people find it easier to warm the coconut oil in the microwave for 10 seconds on power level 70 to soften it; this will make      it easier to combine.
4. Pour into the GREASED 8×8 baking pan or muffin tin.
5. Pour into a greased 8×8″ square baking pan and set into the larger baking pan. Pour enough hot water into the larger baking pan to come up 1″           up the side of the square pan.
6. Place both pans into the preheated oven.
7. Bake for the correct amount of time depending on your baking pan. See Below:
8×8″ Pan      40-50 Minutes
Muffin Tins 10-20 Minutes
The best way to tell if your brownies are done is by inserting a tooth pick into the center, if it comes out clean it’s done and you will have more cake like brownies. If it comes out with a little bit of batter you’re going to have fudgier brownies.

Making the White Chocolate Glaze

1. Break apart the Ross White Chocolate into a microwave safe bowl. Add the coconut oil.
2. Microwave for 10 seconds on power level 70 . Stir. Repeat x 2 stirring between each microwave. Your chocolate should be melted by now, if there are little chunks stir the chocolate mixture until they melt. DO NOT continue to microwave past this point as it is very easy to burn this chocolate.

 

When brownies have cooled to the touch, pour melted chocolate over top and voila! You’ve got yourself a delicious dessert that is sure to please the pickiest of eaters!

Assuming the 8×8 Brownie Recipe was used
Per serving this dessert is equal to:
193 Calories
38.7 Carbs – 3 g Fibre – 29 g Sugar Alcohol
= 6.7 g Net Carbs (including the glaze)
=1.5g Net Carb (without the Glaze


*Notes, Ross Chocolate contains Maltitol, which is known to have slightly laxative effects if consumed in excess. If you find you are senstive to this chocolate, any of our other chocolates including: ChocoPerfection ,  Rene Rey, or Lily’s Chocolates would work in its place.

Low Calorie, Low Carb Double Chocolate Pudding

puddingChocolate Almond Breeze with Chocolate Pudding Mix makes this dessert not only quick, but full of the chocolaty goodness.  Turn a simple pudding into a fancy dessert  by adding  a whipped cream topping and a caramel drizzle!

By making a few changes to the original Kraft Chocolate Pudding Mix recipe on the back of the box, this dessert becomes an even lower carb option!
In place of 2 cups 2% or skim milk we added  Almond Breeze Unsweetened Almond Beverage – Chocolate Flavour. This gave the pudding a rich chocolate taste without affecting the texture in the slightest!
Just because you’re on a Low Carb diet, doesn’t mean your on a Low fun diet!

 

Per serving this dessert is equal to:
52.5 Calories
9.5g Carbs – 1.5 g Fibre
= 8g Net Carbs

 

 

How to make amazing Miracle Noodles

Miracle Noodles are a wonderful pasta and noodle alternative for people living the low carb lifestyle. In this post, we’re going to talk about a little known technique for preparing an amazing miracle noodle dish…. instructions that should have come with the product.

Miracle Noodles are very low or zero calories (depending on the type), a source of fibre, and help you feel fuller, between meals due to the natural characteristics of Konjac. Miracle Noodles, in particular, also have the benefits of being non-GMO Project Certified, Gluten Free, Soy Free, Dairy Free, Kosher.  No other konjac / shirataki noodle product has all these features.

Sounds all good — but then you go and buy your first pack and it’s not what most people expect.  It’s a plastic bag with noodles floating inside a pool of liquid. When you open it up, there is an aroma — best described as “salty” which is what keeps the noodle fresh (don’t use the liquid – you’re supposed to drain it away). A lot of people get turned off by this smell and might even think it has gone bad,… but its completely normal. Then, following the instructions, you boil it for 5 minutes just as you would regular dry pasta.

After performing these steps, you might decide then to pour some tomato based pasta sauce on it. Voila! When you get is a sloppy mess because the sauce takes up some of the water that is carried by the noodles (the noodles lose a bit of water when cooked). Not totally appetizing, but edible.

After lots of experimentation with the noodles, here is how to prepare the noodles to make the meal exceptional!

  • First, after draining out the fluid in the package, be sure to boil at least 5 minutes… I find even 8-10 minutes is just fine. Boiling longer seems to provide a better texture to the noodle in the latter steps.
  • If you have meat toppings, onions, or other veggies that need to be cooked, cook them in advance (while the noodles are boiling, for example). You’ll be adding these as pre-cooked toppings.
  • After boiling, drain the water and use a frying pan to pan-fry the noodles without any toppings. This process drives out any additional water that the noodles are prepared to release. Pan fry for at least another 3-5 minutes – the noodles won`t burn and won`t stick (in a non-stick pan) and I’ve done this for up to 10 minutes.
  • When the noodles look fairly dry, you can start adding your sauce, being careful not to add too much — add just enough to coat the noodles.
  • Continue to stir in the sauce and add toppings – if you have them. Continue to cook off excess moisture.
  • Give a quick toss to mix everything and serve!

With these modified steps, you’ll have amazing tasting Miracle Noodles!