Sunday, December 11, 2016

Chocolate Mint Avocado Protein Mousse

I know you won't be surprised to see this post.  When I first made the Mint Avocado Protein Mousse with vanilla Leanfit whey blend, I was sure it would be delicious in a chocolate version as well.

Chocolate Mint Avocado  Protein Mousse

And I was right.  I finally made it up today and we enjoyed it for an afteroon snack while catching up on some tv movies... lazy Winter Sundays... gotta love them, right?

It makes up in about 2 minutes. I do let it sit in the refrigerator for a couple of hours to chill, and to torture myself with the wait... builds character I am sure!

But I was a bit put off by the color at first... the flavor is fabulous... the chocolate comes through loud and clear and the mint is perfect... and the avocado makes it creamy and rich... but the color... more like caramel than chocolate, would you agree?

Chocolate Mint Avocado  Protein Mousse

Once you get past that, it is clear sailing... or spooning... all the way to the bottom of the dish!

Chocolate Mint Avocado  Protein Mousse

For the recipe and instructions you can refer to the original post here... Mint Avocado Protein Mousse... and let me know which is your favorite... vanilla or chocolate?  Hmmmm... might have to make them both again, just to be sure!  Of course all I did was sub the chocolate whey for the vanilla whey in the recipe... no other changes.

Oh, and just a reminder for my Weight Watchers buddies this mousse counts as only 4 Smart Points. Now that is a bargain!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

An Odd But Tasty Pairing of Peppermint with Avocado in this Protein Mousse

You may know that I have been looking for a new whey protein powder.  I do happen to really like the vegan powders I have been using lately, but sometimes a particular recipe I want to make up calls for a whey powder.  The vegan and whey powders are very different beasts when it comes to consistency for baking.

I tried to make my High Protein Angel Cake with a favorite pea protein powder and it did not raise at all.

So, I went hunting for a whey powder that I could purchase locally; one that didn't cost a fortune and when I found a couple I thought I might like, I polled some blogging friends and they helped me decide. I did a lot of research into isolates, and blends too. There is a lot to learn when it comes to protein powders, apparently!

The powder I eventually chose is a brand called LeanFit and they manufacture in Canada. It is a whey blend and does have a bit of sucralose in the mix.  Overall I am pretty  happy with the nutritional profile and the taste and texture, as well as the price.  I got it at my local Costco and purchased a large tub of the vanilla and a large tub of the chocolate. So far, so good.

And, I also subscribed to the newsletter that the team at LeanFit send out by email. The letter I got this week had a couple of good looking recipes in it and I chose one to try out... it was intriguing because it has both peppermint extract and avocado in it and that is an odd combination in my mind.

The dish is called Mint Avocado Protein Mousse... the recipe makes 2 servings so I mixed it up for my afternoon snack on Friday.  I ate one serving and was happy to share the second with The Captain... he loved it as much as I do.  And asked me to make it again.

I will certainly do that, as long as I am able to purchase more avocados.  Apparently there has been some weather mishap in Mexico that is causing an avocado shortage here.  Glad I have 2 more in the larder so we won't go without right way, at least.

I am going to share the recipe with you the way I made it,  and also suggest that you check out some other fun recipes on the LeanFit site itself.

Mint Avocado Protein Mousse

Mint Avocado Protein Mousse
makes 2 servings


  • 1 ripe medium/small avocado
  • 1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder (approx. 30g in weight)
  • scant 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp stevia
  • 2 or 3 drops peppermint extract
  • 1 tsp semi sweet mini chocolate chips
  1. Peel the avocado and remove the pit. Place the flesh into the bowl of your food processor blender.
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Puree for about 30 seconds.
  4. Remove to 2 serving bowls
  5. Top each serving with a few chocolate chips.
Per serving.
Weight Watchers Smart Points = 4.

Calories 147
Fat 9g
Saturated Fat 2g
Carbohydrates 7g
Sugar 2g
Fibre 3g
Protein 13g

I think I will try it again with the chocolate flavored whey.

Mint Avocado Protein Mousse
The main ingredients

Mint Avocado Protein Mousse
A small ramekin filled with deliciousness!

Mint Avocado Protein Mousse
Digging in.

What do you think?  Would you ever pair peppermint with avocado?

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Quick Oatflour Flatbread

Ever have one of those kitchen experiments that just turns out so much better than you had hoped... and you just HAVE to share it?  That is what happened yesterday when I was looking to make myself a quickie peanut butter and honey sandwich.

Quick Oatflour Flatbread

What?  A sandwich?  For a girl that rarely eats bread of any kind... a sandwich is a rare thing to find on my plate.  Yes, I do keep a loaf of gluten-free bread stashed in the freezer for rare BBQd burger emergencies, however it is not something I normally would even think to eat.  I have never really been a bread eater since I gave up my breadmaker before moving onto our sailboat several years ago. And since I have been gluten free, the options there are really very limited in appeal.

But for some reason, peanut butter and honey was calling to me.  I cannot recall the last time I ate honey and I certainly don't remember the last time I ate bread.  I prefer my low-carb flatbreads or tortillas to bread (cauliflower base) but that was not going to cut it with peanut butter and honey.

Okay... what to do?  I knew I needed something bready.  In the past I might have tried to make something with coconut flour or almond flour, but I am trying to limit my fat intake these days so those were not options for me.

I always have a bag of gluten-free oats in the cupboard so I tossed about a cupful into the food processor and ground them on high for several minutes.  I am a bit afraid of burning out the motor on the food processor so I occasionally turn it off... not really sure if that does any good, but overall I think it took about five minutes of grinding to end up with coarse oat flour.

I measured some into a bowl and added almond milk one spoonful at a time until I got a consistency I thought I could work with, added a few grains of stevia and a sprinkle of cinnamon and put it into a hot pan on the stove to cook.

After a few minutes, I was pleasantly surprised that it was solid enough to flip... so I cooked the other side for a few minutes more and then removed it to a plate to cool.  I was eager to try it so while it cooled I mixed up some PB2 and looked for some honey.  I was pretty sure The Captain had some stashed in the pantry and I actually found 3 different kinds. I chose a liquid honey for my treat.  Then  I cut the flatbread into quarters and slathered each piece with PB2 and drizzle of honey and a shake of cinnamon, and sat down with a cup of coffee to enjoy my experiment.

Quick Oatflour Flatbread

Complete success!

And I realized, because the bread was still warm, it was fairly pliable... I could use this as a wrap... perhaps.  More ideas came immediately to mind, and so today, I am made myself another for breakfast and enjoyed it with some ham slices and an egg.  I folded it over and ate it like a sandwich. Instead of stevia and cinnamon, I put a sprinkling of Italian Seasoning into the batter.  Delicious!

Quick Oatflour Flatbread

It was tempting to take the bread from the pan too quickly.  Don't do this... you want the oats flour to cook completely or it will taste like raw oats... not my favorite taste at all.  And it will also be too soft and doughy.

Quick Oatflour Flatbread


  • 1/4 cup oat flour
  • 3 Tbs almond milk
  • seasonings of choice
  1. If you need to grind your own oats into oat flour, do that before you measure the flour.  Otherwise place the oat flour into a medium bowl.
  2. Add the almond milk and seasonings and mix well.
  3. Let sit for a couple of minutes to make sure the milk is completely absorbed by the flour.
  4. Lightly coat a pan with non-stick spray and heat on MEDIUM.
  5. Add the batter to the pan and spread into a circle about 5 or 6 inches in diameter. Do not spread too thin.
  6. Allow to cook about 4 or 5 minutes.
  7. Flip over and cook second side 3 or 4 minutes.
  8. Remove from heat and serve as desired.
Per whole recipe without toppings.
Weight Watchers Smart Points = 2.
Calories 82
Saturated Fat 0g
Carbohydrates 14g
Sugar 1g
Fibre 2g
Protein 3g

I used Only Oats and unsweetened orginal Almond Dream. The N.I. is going to depend on the ingredients you choose. 

Quick Oatflour Flatbread
Place the batter into a heated pan and spread into a circle about 5 or 6 inches in diameter. 

Quick Oatflour Flatbread
Cook several minutes and then flip and cook second side.

Quick Oatflour Flatbread
Enjoy with your favorite toppings for a quick and gluten-free treat.

I am not really a fan of hard crackers, but if you are, you could easily toast this Quick Oatflour Flatbread in the oven for a few minutes to bake it, or perhaps even try toasting it.

What do you think?  PB and honey or PB and jam?

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

High Protein Breakfasts Suitable for Weight Watchers with Smart Points Values

I always eat high protein breakfasts... I have learned by trial and error over the past several years, that the more protein in relation to fat and carbs that I consume in the morning, the better my day goes.  Protein satisfies me.  Starchy carbs do not.

Some people do very well with eating cereal in the morning... I am not one of them.

I  have tried eating oatmeal with milk and fruit... I have tried bagels with peanut butter and perhaps all-fruit jam... but those things just make me light-headed within an hour and then I get HANGRY... you know, that feeling that you have to eat RIGHT NOW or chew off the arm of the person closest to you!  Nobody wants to be around that person and The Captain, bless him, put up with that for far too many years until I figured it out.

On those three days a week that I do my strength training program in the morning, I have a quick high protein shake about an hour before my workout. which I follow up with a walk.  Then I come in and make breakfast.  I have a few favorites that are very high in protein. I usually add some low glycemic-load veggies or fruit alongside... mostly for the sake of volume and taste.

I do like eggs with turkey bacon or lean ham.  And if there is neither on hand, I will have scrambled egg whites with cottage cheese or plain Greek yogurt, and some fruit.

I love that egg whites have so much protein and no fat, but sometimes I need the extra nutrients that a whole egg provides so I will scramble a whole egg with my egg whites.  It really does increase the satisfaction factor.

Here are some breakfasts that I have eaten recently and have really enjoyed.. and found that they have kept me fully satisfied for 4 to 5 hours till I eat my lunch.  I am sharing the Weight Watchers Smart Point count for each because I know that is important to some of you.

Scrambled egg whites with cottage cheese and mike-softened apple slices, strawberry slices, cinnamon sprinkles.
Total SP = 2

Eggs with lean ham and navel orange pieces.
Total SP  5.

Eggs with turkey bacon and sauteed yellow zoodles.
Total SP = 5.

Scrambled eggs with tomato, onion, and real crumbled bacon, pieces of navel orange.
Total SP = 5.

Scrambled egg and egg whites with fat free Greek yogurt, sauteed apple slices and cinnamon sprinkles.
Total SP = 3.

Eggs with turkey bacon and ruby red grapefruit pieces.
Total SP = 5.

If you like to get a little creative with protein powders, check out some of my breakfast recipes such as my High Protein Puck (2 SP), or  my High Protein Breakfast Puff (2 SP).

If  you must have oatmeal in the morning, have a look at a couple of ways to get more protein into them.  Protein Packed Cheesy Oats (7 SP) is one good idea. 

Some Smart Point counts for common breakfast items:

1 egg = 2 SP
1/2 cup egg whites = 0 SP
1 cup egg whites = 1 SP
4 slices turkey bacon = 1 SP
2 slices lean ham = 1 SP
1/2 cup low fat cottage cheese = 2 SP
1/2 cup fat free plain Greek yogurt = 1 SP
1/4 cup uncooked oats, quick or rolled
most fruit  = 0 SP
most veggies = 0 SP
herbs and spices = 0 SP

What is your favorite breakfast these days? 

If you like this post, I hope you will share it with your friends and Pin if for future reference.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Sugar Free Meringues

As most of you know I am carb cycling these days and really trying to be  more careful with what I eat in general... not going off the rails with sweets and treats.

But since I indulged in a few gluten free macarons and date muffins (OMG!) at a family wedding I recently attended... I have been craving sugar.  Not only was it the most beautiful and intimate wedding I have ever attended, it was also the most delicious!  I guess I am going to confess to having eat a whole jar of this fabulous granola that was a favor from the wedding, too.   It is full of whole nuts and the most wonderful oat mixture.

So, I have been trying to come up with a healthy way of getting in a bit of sweetness and today I experimented with making sugar-free meringues.  I love meringues, but certainly don't want all the sugar that normally goes into making them... but I looked in my pantry and spied several little bottles of NuNaturals liquid stevia in a variety of flavors.

I chose lemon.  And went to work.  Now, I know these pictures are not great, but I am going to show them here anyway so I can share this recipe with you. If I get better ones another time, I will replace them, promise. I think it is more important at this point to get this out to you than to dither over poor pictures!

If you don't have flavored stevia, use plain and add a small spoonful of vanilla or almond or any other extract that you might like.  I used cream of tartar to help stiffen the egg whites as I beat them. If your climate is dryer than mine, you may not need it.

Little confession... no, these meringues are not exactly like the ones you would make with sugar... they are dryer and flakier... but just as tasty and they fill the sweetness need.

Sugar Free Meringues

Sugar-Free Meringues
Makes 9 meringues

  • 5 Tbs liquid egg whites 
  • 1/8 tsp cream of tartar
  • 15 drops liquid stevia. flavor of choice
  1. Preheat your oven to 215°F.
  2. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  3. Beat your egg whites and cream of tartar till stiff peaks form. May take several minutes.
  4. Add the stevia drops and beat again till well mixed.  (At this point I tasted the mixture. If it had not been sweet enough I would have added  more stevia.)
  5. Using a large spoon, make 6 mounds of the egg white mixture on the baking sheet.
  6. Put the pan into the oven and bake 75 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven.
  8.  Store any uneaten meringues (ha ha) in a covered container as they will take on moisture.
Per whole recipe:
Weight Watchers Smart Points = 1 *
Calories 43
Fat 0g
Saturated Fat 0g
Sugar 0g
Protein 8g

* You can actually have up to 1 cup of egg whites for a single Smart Point so make a larger batch if you like and go for it!

I think I will use this method to make some Pavlova nests in the near future. With some berries and a bit of whipped cream, they will be lovely... and still low carb.  YAY!

Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until stiff.

Add stevia and beat again till mixed.

Pile on a baking sheet and place in oven.

Out of the oven and cooling...

and popping one into my mouth!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Delicious and Easy Low Carb Meal and Snack Ideas

Quite often on my Facebook page I post pictures of a meal I have prepared and make reference to my low carb day or my high carb day... and I have had a few people ask me about that.

It is not my intention to write a primer about Carb Cycling here. There are many authorities on the subject and several different ways to use the technique as well as a great variety of different reasons that people do so.  I just want to tell you a bit about my experience with it and share some meal ideas that I have used on my low carb days.

I will share a bit of background.  I first became interested in Carb Cycling after reading a couple of books by Chris Powell. He is the Extreme Weight Loss trainer on the tv series. I hadn't seen it when I first picked up one of his books but the information he wrote made sense to me. He offers a few different ways to use the technique and I have tried a couple of them... finally settling on one that works for me.

My taste buds love carbs!  But I have learned over the years that my body just does not tolerate them all that well.  I am not talking about the carbs we find in fresh veggies and fruits.  No, I am referring to the starchy carbs in rice, and quinoa, in legumes, and in processed foods made with grains... you know... bread, crackers, cookies, cakes... all the good stuff.  And I have also found that once I do eat some of those things, I want MORE of them.

So, limiting them works for me quite nicely. It also helps me maintain my weight while giving me the fuel I need to power through my days.

In the past I have tried to follow an extremely low carb plan where I don't get to eat any of those things I like, and found it just too hard to stay with. I mean, who wants to never eat dates or sushi again... EVER?  Not me.  I know that some people do very well with Keto diets and I am not knocking them... again, just not for me.

Carb Cycling the way I do it works for me.  I get to eat some of those 'trigger' foods occasionally. I have a drink occasionally. And I also eat a ton of fresh produce and lots of nuts and seeds.  I am a happy carnivore, too.

I do keep track of macros with My Fitness Pal but I do not obsess over it.  Here is what I am aiming for on each of the 3 different types of day I plan:
  • Regular Day - Protein 35%/Carbs 40%/Fat 25%
  • Low Carb/High Fat Days - Protein 40%/Carbs 20%/Fat 40%
  • High Carb/Low Fat Days - Protein 40%/Carbs 40%/Fat 20%
My week usually looks like this:
  • Sunday - Regular Day
  • Monday/Tuesday - Low Carb/High Fat Days
  • Wednesday - High Carb/Low Fat Day
  • Thursday/Friday -  Low Carb/High Fat Days
  • Saturday - High Carb/Low Fat Day
Actually, my Low Carb/High Fat days have become my favorite days.   Serious. And I find them very easy to EAT... meals are simple but allow me to be as creative as I like.    So what do I enjoy on these days? Protein.. meat, BACON, cheeses, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, protein powders that have few carbs... lots and lots of vegetables... seeds, nuts, avocadoes, and oils, berries and grapefruit.

On these days I avoid starchy veggies like sweet potatoes, beets, and legumes...  most fruits other than berries and grapefruit.... dried fruits, grains or processed foods with grains, alcohol, sugary treats like fudgsicles, and so on.

Do I miss them?  Nope, because I know I can have them on Sunday or Wednesday or Saturday... and let's face it... it isn't the law... it's NOT the boss of me, so if I want something I will have it anytime I choose.  But honestly, I usually choose not to...

Let's have a look at what I have been eating lately on my Low Carb/High Fat days.

Some favorite low carb meals and snacks by @Wecanbegin2feed


This is where I like to get creative. It is usually lots of protein with some fruit and/or veggies.  On days I go to work in the morning, The Captain scrambles up some eggs with a bit of onion, sliced grape tomatoes and pre-cooked bacon crumbles... add a piece of grapefruit, or half an orange or some berries and I am set to go.

One of my favorites... eggs with bacon-style turkey and red grapefruit.

Protein 'cookie dough' with pecans, almonds, strawberries and coconut oil.  The cookie dough is a low-carb vegan protein powder mixed with just enough almond milk to make it lumpy and thick like a real cookie dough. 

Scrambled egg and egg whites with hemp seeds and cinnamon.

My High Protein Puck with Greek yogurt and mixed berries.

My High Protein Puck, cut in half and toasted with PB2, strawberries and cinnamon, with red grapefruit.

And just a note... My High Protein Puck is great torn up into bits and topped with Greek yogurt and fruit. Kinda like a trifle.

Scrambled egge whites with strawberries, slivered almonds, coconut shreds and cinnamon.

Eggs with Canadian back bacon and berries.

Protein shake made with protein powder, coconut milk and spinach.

Protein Shake made with protein powder, almond milk and frozzen mixed berries.

A couple of other breakfast faves...


Lunch is usually a huge salad with protein and and oily dressing. Or if I have some on hand I make a sandwich rollup with my Low-Carb Flatbread and some lean deli ham.  I often have zoodles (zucchini noodles made with a spiralizer) ... and if it is a cool day, I will cook my veggies or even make a veggie soup and toss my protein of choice into that.  

I love cottage cheese topped with tomatoes, cucumber, green onions, sunflower seeds and then drizles with an oily, herb-filled dressing.

Greek style tuna salad. A can of water packed tuna tossed into a bowl with lots of peppers, onion, cucumber, tomatoes, fresh herbs, and a dressing made with EVOO and red wine vinegar mixed with basil and oregeno.

Leftover barbecued chicken with lettuce, cucumbers, orange peppers tossed with EVOO and apple cider vinegar.

Lightly sauted peppers, zukes, onions tossed with canned chicken breast. I love the Kirkland canned chunk chicken breast that I find at Costco. Handy and tasty.

Spinach, cucumbers, strawberries, pecans with chicken and dressed with EVOO and apple cide vinegar. Snow peas on the side.  

Raw zoodles topped with yogurt/avocado mixture and cilantro.  Snap peas, cucumbers, tomatoes alongside.

This experiment turned out to be one of my favorites. Yellow and green peppers lightly sauteed in coconut oil with zoodles. Leftover barbecued chicken on top.

Check out some of the sauces I use on my zoodles:


I have become a meat and veggies kind of girl.  Dinner is usually something cooked on the grill, if I am lucky... cause The Captain is the grill-master here!  And I will prepare veggies or salad to go along with it. One of my favorite meals is a grilled Wild Pacific Salmon Burger (Trident brand from Costco - frozen) on top of a plate of salad or coleslaw.

Lean pork chop and fresh thyme with green beans and oven-roasted cauliflower.

This grilled eggplant with balsamic sauce is great!  Yes, it is a bit higher in carbs but when I am low for the overall day, I enjoy it!  

The Captain likes pizza so I make my own crust with ground flax (it's easy and quick) and then top it...

sometimes a little more elaborately...

Oven roasted veggies with barbecue chicken.  Roasted veggies are a favorite and in the cooler months I make them a couple of times a week. 

Baked meatballs with a wee bit of cheese melted on them, then placed on skewers with tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce and served with coleslaw.

Check out:


I normally have an afternoon snack.  I try to avoid protein bars because they normally have more sugar than I want on Low Carb days.  I ofen will mix up a couple of tablespoons of defatted peanut flour such as PB2 or Protein Plus, and then mix in some sunflower seeds and if I want a sweet... a small spoonful of semi-sweet chocolate chips.  I love a handful of almonds or raw cashews and I also like cheese... mini Baby Bels or light old cheddar is a favorite too.  I love the low fat turkey pepperettes that I find at Costco.  Club soda has become my cocktail of choice!

Sometimes I like to make up what I call 'cookie dough' and have that as a snack in the afternoon. I find that the vegan protein powders work very well for this. I have a couple of favorites that I like that are low in in carbs... gotta be a labe reader.

Mix a scoop of the protein powder with cocoa powder or PB2 if you like.. and then enough almond milk or coconut milk to make it barely wet and quite lumpy.... probably 3 to 4 Tbs of milk.  Add nuts or semi-sweet chocolate chips and eat with a small spoon. Awesome!

Yeah, I know it looks terrible. But if you like raw cookie dough you gotta try this.

This is another fave... can be a snack or a dessert. It is my High Protein Angel Food Cake and it is made with egg whites and a whey protein powder... I like it topped with berries and Greek yogurt or whipped cream.  Mmmmm.

I think you can see why Low Carb/High Fat day has become my favorite... not only for the great things I eat, but because my body is leaner on these days.  Starchy carbs hang onto water weight so on days I eat them, my belly is rounder, my fingers and toes are a bit puffier.  I probably weigh 3 or 4 pounds more.

What is your favorite low carb meal?

Have you tried carb cycling?