Zevia for the Super Bowl: I’ll go with the black cherry

If you’re searching for a soda that isn’t sweetened with high fructose corn syrup, sugar or the various artificial sweeteners in diet sodas that some people are fearful of these days, Zevia is worth a try.

I wrote recently about not being impressed with the taste of Zevia cream soda and the Zevia folks wrote to ask me to try their other varieties as well. They were kind enough to send me six packs of a multitude of flavors to try for free.

I appreciated their outreach, as I also wrote about here. And I’ve tried all the flavors sent. The verdict — I liked the black cherry the best, I think the flavor there was strong enough to mask the Stevia taste, or at least what I perceive as a Stevia taste in these Stevia-sweetened sodas. The cherry cola also came close, but didn’t quite mask it all.

Zevia sent me four flavors of its Stevia-sweetened soda to try. I liked the black cherry best.
Zevia sent me four flavors of its Stevia-sweetened soda to try. I liked the black cherry best.

Other flavors sent me were cola and root beer. So the brand has a full array of flavors from which to choose.

If you’re searching for a soda that isn’t sweetened with high fructose corn syrup, sugar or the various artificial sweeteners in diet sodas that some people are fearful of these days, Zevia is worth a try. It could be a fun addition to your Super Bowl party table. See what guests think, or have blind taste tests to see if they can tell which is which, matching it up against other brands.

Thanks again Zevia folks, for your generosity and your efforts to win me over.
John

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Super Bowl Low-salt, low-fat party menu — try swordfish steaks as a main course

I buy my swordfish frozen at a local Trader Joe’s. If you’re lucky enough to be near a fresh fish store that sells it, all the better. Enjoy!

Super Bowl usually means ribs and burgers and beef, but if you’re on a low-fat diet, try seafood instead. A swordfish steak comes pretty close to the mouth-feel of a good beef steak.

Swordfish can be a great Super Bowl Party dish that's low-fat and low-salt.
Swordfish can be a great Super Bowl Party dish that’s low-fat and low-salt.

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I’ve written about making swordfish with a salt-free spice rub. You also can use any of the salt-free marinades from Mrs. Dash or others out there. I think teriyaki goes with everything which is why I love the salt-free version Mrs. Dash has.

I buy my swordfish frozen at a local Trader Joe’s. If you’re lucky enough to be near a fresh fish store that sells it, all the better. Enjoy!
John

Super Bowl Party dishes — try fat-free twice-baked potatoes

Once mixed, spoon back into your potato skins and cook under a broiler until the tops get brown peaks. Add chives or parsley to them as well if you like and serve. If you can handle the added salt, you also can add some fat-free mozzarella to get some cheese on them.

Potato skins are a Super Bowl standard but all that fat in the cheese and bacon are out if you’re on a low-salt, low-fat diet. But a reader of this blog recently suggested making mashed potatoes using low-salt chicken stock rather than butter and milk. So we’re adding these as an option for our week of Super Bowl treats.

I tried the idea and loved it, so I thought why not take it to the next level but using the mixture to make a twice-baked potato? Simply bake several large potatoes until they are soft to the touch. They can be done in a microwave as well, check yours for cooking times since that varies by microwave.

All you need for fat-free, low-salt mashed potatoes.
All you need for fat-free, low-salt mashed potatoes.
Add soup slowly and mash to get the consistency you want. This first attempt of mine got a little too mushy.Add soup slowly and mash to get the consistency you want. This first attempt of mine got a little too mushy.Add soup slowly and mash to get the consistency you want. This first attempt of mine got a little too mushy.
Add soup slowly and mash to get the consistency you want. This first attempt of mine got a little too mushy.
Once the consistency you want, spoon into your potato skins and broil a few minutes to brown the tops.
Once the consistency you want, spoon into your potato skins and broil a few minutes to brown the tops.

Once they’re done, cut length-wise and scoop out the potato inside leaving the half-skins intact for refilling.
Continue reading “Super Bowl Party dishes — try fat-free twice-baked potatoes”

Super Bowl Treats — Puff pastry shells with salasa, mushroom, tomato combo

My wife took 15 cups and filled them with fat-free, sugar-free chocolate pudding she made for our dessert, topping them with tiny pieces of cut-up fruit. That’s another great party option for your Super Bowl guests.

I wrote yesterday about some wonderful mini-puff pastry cups that have only 15 mgs of salt and 0.5 grams of fat in two of them, so you can chug six or eight with ease and not worry about salt or fat content. But you need to fill them with something to make them a treat for guests at your Super Bowl Party.

Start by cutting up a portobello mushroom cap, one was enough to fill 15 mini-puff pastry cups.
Start by cutting up a portobello mushroom cap, one as enough to fill 15 mini-puff pastry cups.

Next fry the cut-up mushroom with cut-up tomato in olive oil and add a low-salt salsa. Reduce the mixture to thicken it a bit.
Next fry the cut-up mushroom with cut-up tomato in olive oil and add a low-salt salsa. Reduce the mixture to thicken it a bit.

Then fill your cups and serve at room temperature.
Then fill your cups and serve at room temperature.

I whipped up a filling made with cut up portobello mushrooms, tomatoes and a low-salt roasted garlic-flavored salsa I bought at Trader Joe’s.

First I cooked down the mushrooms and diced tomatoes in a frying pan sprayed with olive oil. When they reduced a bit and became soft, I added the salsa, enough to fill the 15 cups I had to work with. Guests at a recent dinner party seemed to enjoy them and I loved them. Continue reading “Super Bowl Treats — Puff pastry shells with salasa, mushroom, tomato combo”

Super Bowl low-salt, low-fat snacks: try filling these mini-puff pastry cups

Two shells have only half a gram of fat and 15 mgs of salt, so you can actually eat a bunch and not consume all that much fat and salt.

The Big Game is coming this Sunday but if you’re on a low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar diet, most traditional game-day munchies are out for you. I’ve written before about looking for low-salt potato chips and salt-free taco chips, but even with those you still have to worry about fat content.

But recently I came across these mini puff pastry cups. Two shells have only half a gram of fat and 15 mgs of salt, so you can actually eat a bunch and not consume all that much fat and salt. Fill them with salt-free treats like cut-up tomatoes or pieces of shrimp. Or make something hot (watch for a recipe for my low-salt salsa, tomato, mushroom filling later this week).

These mini cups are low in fat and salt and sugar-free. Fill them with salt-free treats for Super Bowl munching.
These mini cups are low in fat and salt and sugar-free. Fill them with salt-free treats for Super Bowl munching.
puff pastry cups nutrition information
Puff pastry cups nutrition information

The ones I bought at a Safeway are already cooked and sold frozen. Thaw them to eat. If you fill with anything wet, like salsa, eat them the same day or they get a bit soggy in the frig over night.

John

Balsamic Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower

I can’t stand cauliflower, but I’m thinking this would taste good with just the broccoli, will have to try it.

Vittles and Voyages

January 25, 2015

Good morning everyone!

As part of my continuation of my last blog post about healthy eating, I’m going to keep going and post some more recipes, hopefully some that will help you put together your own healthy eating plan. Along with high quality, low-fat protein sources (one of my main focuses at every meal, as of now), you need some good veggies that are low carb and high in nutrients to help fill up the plate.

While salad (without the heavy dressing, croutons and cheese) is always a good choice to get lots of veggies and volume to fill you up, especially during the winter, I want warm food, comfort food, not usually healthy food. Time to get creative and start roasting!

Lucky for me, I grew up eating broccoli with dinner almost every night (for a while it was one of the few green vegetables I…

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Top 5 no salt, no fat, no sugar restaurant posts of 2014

With Costco nearly everywhere, it’s no wonder this was my most popular eating out post.

Our no salt, no fat, no sugar Top 5 list week concludes with this look today at the five most-viewed posts about restaurant or away-from-home meals I’ve blogged about.

Finding low-salt dishes at restaurants is almost impossible and so extremely disheartening to anyone who loves to eat out as I do. But I have been searching menus, and challenging chefs, to make low-salt, low-fat, low-sugar offerings and gathered the best of my findings here. So enjoy, you can eat out again, just plan ahead and don’t be afraid to challenge a chef or two to do better to meet your needs.

This is what a Costco food court Caesar salad looks like when you unwrap it, a giant cup of fat-filled Caesar dressing and a mound of high-salt, high-fat grated cheese
Stick to salad when eating on the run, and take out the high-fat dressing and cheese. Always carry your own oil and vinegar packets to use instead.

1. Costco Food Court Salads: you can make then healthier

With Costco nearly everywhere, it’s no wonder this was my most popular eating out post. I show you here how to take a salad that can be horribly unhealthy because of the dressing and cheese involved, not to mention the croutons, and field strip it down to its healthy essence.

That said, I still worry about how much salt was used in cooking the chicken on it.

2. What’s an airline no-salt/low-salt meal like?

Finding good airline food is impossible. Finding good airline low-salt food is even worse. This had to be the worst airline meal I have ever had. And that’s saying something given that I remember when meals were regularly served on long-distance flights.

3. Can you eat healthy at Universal Studios?

Speaking of horrible salads, Universal has the worst excuse for a salad I’ve had, on the ground, in a long time. I literally lost three pounds in three days in Orlando because of the lack of healthy food. Disney does have a fish place that made me some plain salmon, thankfully. Continue reading “Top 5 no salt, no fat, no sugar restaurant posts of 2014”