Thursday, January 19, 2023

Yummy keto diet recipes for weight loss: food swaps for cheese soup and mac and cheese

Greeting friends! As part of my No Junk January weight loss challenge, I'm sharing de-junked versions of junk food favorites, so we can still satisfy cravings with calorie restricting and 1200 calorie diet friendly options. Today's feature keto diet recipes for broccoli cheese soup, cheese sauce and mac and cheese. 

Part of how I lost 100 pounds without gastric bypass, was with keto diet and calorie restricting on a 1200 calorie diet. Those might sound contradictory as keto and calorie restricting seem to be opposite approaches to weight loss. But one thing they share in common is reduction of junk carbs, breads and starches and sugar. 

One reason cheese and dairy are verboten for weight loss is their addictive nature, esp. cheese. Gastric bypass patients on "My 600-lb Life"(a reality TV show about morbid obesity) are always shown consuming huge portions of food covered in butter, gooey cheese, etc. Tacos, pizza, mac and cheese, pasta dishes, are all "overweight" on the dairy. 

However, cheese soups, cheese sauce and mac and cheese aren't really enemies of keto diet or the 1200 calorie diet, IF done right. Keto's problem with dairy isn't the fat. That's encouraged. It's the sugar. Low and zero sugar milk, cheese and other dairy are great for weight loss, both on calorie restricting and keto diets. 

Here are keto diet recipes for broccoli cheese soup and homemade mac and cheese that even gastric bypass surgeon Dr. Now of "My 600-lb Life" would approve of. The recipes aren't feature the same ingredients for the cheese sauce base and they're pretty simple: full fat cottage cheese (or plain Greek yogurt if you can handle it--I can't), Parmesan cheese, shredded mozzarella, blue or feta cheese and avocado. 

So the best food swaps for the cheese sauce base would be Greek yogurt because it has almost no sugar and tons of protein. But it just doesn't hit that junk cheese sauce craving. Something about the sourness. So I blend full fat cottage cheese in my blender till it's super creamy and thick. Blended cottage cheese also cooks nicely without getting grainy or stringy. 

To hit that sharp cheese taste, I add parmesan, feta or blue cheese (just a smidge, or it'll overpower). I also blend avocado and mix half and half with cottage cheese. This make a great sub weight loss friendly sub for Velveeta in mac and cheese. Season with garlic, onion powder, celery salt, celery seed, dry mustard, white pepper and black pepper, and you've got a cheese sauce to die for. 

For cauliflower or broccoli cheese soup, simmer veggies in chicken bone broth for a WHAM of protein for virtually no calories. Then I mash them, add the cheese sauce, plus some shredded mozzarella or 6 cheese Italian and gently (GENTLY) simmer till smooth and melted. Don't boil or the cheese will fall apart. For the "mac" in mac and cheese,  cauliflower, zucchini, lentil or edamame pasta make great food swaps. Or sometimes I omit altogether and just used mashed vegetables. 

For fighting obesity and junk food cravings, keto diet recipes like this are win-win. They are comfort food, plus, protein punch (to curb hunger) plus yum-yum-yum. Many "My 600-lb Life" gastric bypass patients have been able to lose weight and overcome obesity with these simple food swaps. For more No Junk January diet recipes, keep following. 


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