companion blog to the e-book the 24/7 Low Carb Diner

Companion blog to the e-book
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Sunday, December 21, 2014

Buckeye Brownie Bites

I have this friend who is a huge Ohio State fan. She's not huge, but her loyalty to the Buckeye state sure is. I saw this on her Facebook feed and decided we could low carb something similar. The original recipe is inspired by the one she pinned at Inspired by Charm. I have seen plenty of similar recipes, so I honestly have no idea for the original. But most of those use brownie mixes and lots of sugar. Mine are low carb and sugar free. Totally yummy too. I mean, who doesn't love peanut butter and chocolate?

This recipe is in the December Diner News. I have been so crazy busy with the school, I just haven't had time to create something new like I had planned this week. So I am sharing this cookie. When I made them a few weeks ago, I froze half the batch. I can say that they freeze beautifully. This close to Christmas that might not help for holiday entertaining. But, if you plan to get serious about limiting treats in the coming new year, go ahead and make a batch to pop into the freezer. Then you can thaw and warm one or two cookies at a time for a a no-guilt indulgence. Smart.

Buckeye Brownie Bites

2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup vanilla whey protein powder
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 eggs
3/4 cup powdered erythritol blend
1/2 cup lightly flavored oil or melted butter
1/3 cup almond milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup natural, smooth peanut butter
1 cup powdered erythritol blend
2 oz unsweetened chocolate
2 tbsp powdered erythritol blend
2 tsp butter

Combine almond flour, coconut flour, whey, baking powder and salt in a bowl.

In a smaller bowl, beat the eggs with the powdered sweetener. Stir in the oil, almond milk and vanilla. Combine the wet and dry ingredients in the larger bowl. Use a cookie scoop to make approximately 48 rounded cookies. (This may vary with size of scoop) Press each one in the center with a thumbprint. Bake on a lined sheet for 10 minutes.

While the cookies are baking, combine the peanut butter and powdered sweetener. Form into balls, the same number as cookies baking. Remove cookies from oven and top with peanut butter balls.

Melt chocolate and butter. Stir in powdered sweetener. Drizzle chocolate glaze over peanut butter balls

2 cookies: 200 calories  3 net carbs

We still have a few days for those holiday cookies, so be sure to add these to your list! Merry Christmas!

Get more great recipes at the Low Carbing Among Friends Facebook Page:     

 Order any of our great cookbooks at

Order my original e-book or the latest version for couples and singles, 
A Table for Two here.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Abuelita's Chocolate Truffles

This weekend I got to babysit my grandpuppy while my oldest came into town for a party with old friends. In a way that makes me a grandma--an abuela. Call her little and it becomes abuelita. My maternal grandmother was always "Little Grandma" to me. She was a pint size powerhouse. She gave me no Mexican heritage that I know of, but these little truffles celebrate Mexico. And what a delight they are!

Mexican chocolate often has hints of other flavors. For today, I chose cinnamon, coffee and roasted peanuts. Hubby just doesn't do the chile pepper influence, and I had better not plan on eating the whole batch of these all alone. Although plain chocolate truffles are a treat, these are over the top. They are incredibly easy to make too. As long as you don't mind getting your hands all chocolatey when you roll them into balls.

 If you don't like that, you can try them as a pie filling. So rich, you had best plan for mini pie shells like I did. I make a batch of these and keep some in the freezer for quick desserts. I like them both ways.

Abuelita's Chocolate Truffles

3/4 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup powdered erythritol blend
1 tsp sugarfree smooth peanut butter
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp instant coffee granules
1/8 tsp chocolate flavored liquid stevia (or plain)
3 oz unsweetened chocolate, roughly chopped
1/4 cup granulated sweetener 
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

In a small saucepan, combine cream, erythritol, peanut butter, cinnamon, coffee and stevia. Heat, stirring constantly until peanut butter is melted and milk is just beginning to simmer. Remove from heat and stir in chopped chocolate. Stir until chocolate is melted and incorporated. Pour into mini pie shells or chill mixture until firm, about 30 minutes.

While chocolate is chilling, combine granulated sweetener and cinnamon in a small bowl.

 Use a scoop to form 18 balls. Roll in your hand to make a smooth ball shape. Transfer truffles to the cinnamon sweetener mixture and toss to coat. For a pretty presentation, serve each truffle in a mini cupcake liner.

Each truffle has 61 calories and 1 net carb

I like dark chocolate, and these are intensely chocolaty. One thing I don't like about the truffles that are rolled in cocoa powder is the initial bitterness. The cinnamon sweetener coating on these fixes that problem. Cinnamon and chocolate is such a brilliant combination. The coffee is subtle, and frankly, I didn't notice the peanut butter, but I am sure it adds something.

Add these to a cookie tray for a party, or wrap them up as a gift for someone you love who adores chocolate but does not need that sugar overload. They will think you are amazing. And you are! Enjoy those holidays and don't deny yourself some treats. These will fix any cravings for sweets.

Get more great recipes at the Low Carbing Among Friends Facebook Page:     

 Order any of our great cookbooks at

Order my original e-book or the latest version for couples and singles, 
A Table for Two here.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Chicken Parmesan Soup

Crazy busy at your house? This is not a glam recipe. No one will be dazzled by the beauty of it. No special Christmas cheer,,,but it is really tasty. It reminds me of Italian Wedding Soup--the one with those little meatballs. With some shortcuts you will appreciate, it gets you out of the kitchen and on to those holiday festivities. Afterall, not every holiday meal is a showcase!

My shortcuts include my electric pressure cooker. Love that thing. With it, I can take these delicious Chicken Parmesan sausages from Sprouts--straight from the freezer, mind you-- and have a fantastic soup on the table in about half an hour. I am thinking about doing some blogs about gifts that would be loved and used by low carbers like us. This is certainly one. My version of the electric pressure cooker is also a slow cooker and sells for about 75 bucks.  This vegetable soup tastes like it simmered all day, and you can do it that way if you want. Not me, at least not today.

But if it is another one of those "I'm so busy how can I think about dinner?" kinda days, then this pressure cooker could save your life. Well maybe not your life, but at least your diet. Shortcut number two: I keep a selection of Sprouts sausages in the freezer. Sometimes I am so lazy I don't even re-wrap them from the lump they come in from the butcher department. I just stick them in there, paper wrapping and all. The problem is, the sausages are harder to thaw in a big lump. Bad for a conventional method of cooking, but no problem at all in the pressure cooker. They will steam cook or boil, you choose, in about 9 minutes cooking time. You do have the additional time of bringing the pot up to pressure, but still, not much time. If you are cooking them stovetop, better plan on half an hour and check them to break the big lump at the midway mark. See why I love my electric pressure cooker? When time is up and I have released the pressure the fast way, they have separated and are cooked through. Woohoo.

For this soup, I just used my kitchen shears to "slice" them up. So fast. The slices are tender and delicious. Like I said, they remind me of the meatballs in Italian Wedding Soup. Lots easier to make though. No comparison on ease of prep! Plus, the time the sausages are cooking is not wasted. That is when I chop the fresh vegetables to add in. Efficient, no? Once the sausages are sliced, add in the fresh veggies of choice and back to cook under pressure. A mere 5 minutes on high pressure and you are done. Tender veggies that retain a little character, but blend so well with the chicken flavor.

In my last time saver, I use a can of petite diced tomatoes (S&W Premium) that already have the garlic and Italian seasonings added. Watch for sugar added on some brands. This comes in at 3 net carbs per half cup serving. If you can't find one, just add in your own garlic, basil and oregano to taste. Now ready for the recipe?

Chicken Parmesan Soup

3 Chicken Parmesan Sausage Links (>2 carbs each)
14 oz can diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning
3 cans water (42 oz)
6 oz sliced portabella mushrooms
4 cups finely diced cabbage (could sub fresh spinach)
3 ribs celery, diced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup shaved fresh Parmesan Cheese

Place the sausage into the pressure cooker along with the tomatoes and water. Bring up to high pressure and cook for 9 minutes if sausage is frozen, 5 if thawed. Chop vegetables while the sausages are cooking. Release pressure using the quick release method.

Remove sausages and slice into bite sized pieces. Return to pot. Add chopped vegetables and salt. Return to high pressure and cook 5 minutes. Let the pressure drop naturally for 5 minutes, then use quick release. Ladle soup into bowls and top with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.

For a conventional cooking method, thaw sausages. Combine all ingredients except cheese and simmer in a dutch oven on the stove top for an hour or more. Remove cooked sausages and slice. Return to pot. Ladle and top with cheese.

Serves 6:    136 calories   5 net carbs (9)   15 g protein

This is super low calorie. Good if you have been indulging a little too often this holiday season. If not, it gives you lots of room for some fattier low carb treats, like a nice hot cocoa or a fat bomb or two.

For me, the leftover servings are going into mason jars for lunches this week. That makes this a Multiply Meal for us. I know I am going to appreciate this hot meal later this week at school.

Get more great recipes at the Low Carbing Among Friends Facebook Page:     

 Order any of our great cookbooks at

Order my original e-book or the latest version for couples and singles, 
A Table for Two here.