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November 28, 2011 9:45 AM   Subscribe

Looking for recipes that are low to very low calorie, filling and full of volume, made with whole foods and whole ingredients, gluten and grain free, and lower carb if possible. Thank you so much! I love really spicy stuff too.
posted by skjønn to Food & Drink (19 answers total) 149 users marked this as a favorite
 
Turkey chili. Grab some extra-lean ground turkey, saute it in a bit of oil with as much spice as you like, toss in garlic, onion and chopped peppers (hot, mild or both), mix in crushed tomatoes to form a broth, and simmer for an hour or so. Toss in kidney beans at the very end, although if you're keeping it low-calorie you shouldn't go too heavy on them (and if they're canned, strain out the liquid to reduce the sodium content).
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:06 AM on November 28, 2011 [4 favorites]


Here's something surprisingly tasty that I've been making lately: Tuna-Cabbage salad. To make it even lower-cal I think you could increase the cabbage-to-tuna ratio and use 4 tbsp yogurt instead of 3 tbsp yogurt and 1 of mayo. I'm thinking I might try it with chicken as well, maybe with some different spices.

The cabbage provides volume and the tuna provides protein; it's very satisfying. In the photo they show it on a slice of bread but I just eat it from the bowl.
posted by mskyle at 10:23 AM on November 28, 2011 [4 favorites]


Veggie soup is very low-cal and very filling. And you can doctor it at the end with the hot sauce of your choice. I make mine using cabbage, carrots, green beans, onions, garlic, celery, one sweet potato (or you can omit) and then tomato puree + stock (veggie, beef or chicken - or just water) as the base. A bay leaf or two, marjoram, and oregano add flavor.

Raw kale salads with a homemade vinaigrette.

Zucchini "pasta" made using a vegetable peeler, mandolin or sharp knife. Add sauce of your choice.
posted by click at 10:24 AM on November 28, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'll be watching this thread with interest. Here are my ideas:

Southwest salad:
rinse and dump 1 can of black beans and 1 can corn kernels in a bowl. Add powdered cumin and salt (add chili powder or chopped chiles if you like heat). Add the juice of 1 lime over top. Stir to combine. Not very low carb, but low fat and reasonably low calorie.

Extremely filling and delicious Chicken and leek soup:
Wash and slice up 3 leeks. Heat a bit of oil to a large, deep soup pot and add leeks. Fry till soft, maybe 5 minutes. Add in 2-3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in 1 inch cubes. Fry that for 5 minutes till sealed. Add in 6 cups chicken stock, 1 bay leaf and the peel of 1 lemon. Bring the whole thing to a boil, reduce to a simmer and let chug for 20 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste, remove bay leaf and lemon peel before serving. If you can handle rice, add 3/4 cup of long grain rice to the pot before simmering for 20 minutes.

Beef Koftas:
Put all of the following in the workbowl of a food processor, and swizz till a paste forms:
1 cooking onion, peeled and quartered
4 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 inch hunk of ginger, peeled
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tbsp chili powder
4 tbsp chopped cilantro
2 eggs, beaten

Place mixture in a mixing bowl with the following:
salt, to taste
2 lbs of ground beef
2 small white potatoes, peeled and shredded

Form into meatballs, or in oblong shapes on skewers, and roast in a 350 degree oven till done. Serve with spicy curry sauce, if that's something you can have.
posted by LN at 10:25 AM on November 28, 2011 [2 favorites]


Mashed cauliflower. Cut up a LOT of cauliflower and steam-saute it in a covered pan with some oil and some water until soft. Mash. Add a little additional fat (I'm vegan and added about 2/3 T buttery spread to a medium head of cauliflower). Add salt and pepper to taste, also other spices as needed. You could probably add parmesan; I add nutritional yeast. Fibrous, hot, nutty-tasting and has some fat.
posted by Frowner at 10:48 AM on November 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


I make fish "fajitas" by pan-searing fish fillets (mahi mahi, tuna or whatever's on hand) that have been coated with fajita seasoning with sliced peppers, onions, and zucchini. You can add other low-carb veg if you like, but strong-tasting ones like broccoli may not be so great. Once everything's cooked, I put it on a plate and smother it in fresh salsa (pico de gallo). Lots of food, low calories. You can add as much chili powder as you like during cooking if you want it very hot. Sometimes I add a little melted cheddar and cilantro or sour cream on top. Very tasty and often requested at Stately Stardust Manor.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 11:17 AM on November 28, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'll share with you my favorite vegan chili recipe:

Vegan Chili
1 Onion, diced small
1 Cup of MorningStar Crumble (or other Textured Vegetable Protien)
1/2 Cup of Gimme Lean Sausage
1 15oz Can of Black Beans, rinsed and drained
1 15oz Can of Pinto Beans, rinsed and drained
1 15oz Can of Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 Cup of Chili Powder (obviously YMMV, I like my chili spicy)
1/8 Cup of Cumin
1 15oz Can of Fire Roasted Tomatoes, Diced
small can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (find in "ethnic" section of grocery store), only add in as much pepper and sauce as you want. I find 2 peppers and a table soon of sauce makes the chili pretty hot.
1-2 Cups Vegetable Stock

Saute the Onions, MorningStar crumble, Gimme Lean Sausage, Cumin, Chili Pepper, and however many chipotle peppers you want in your chili (dice them up first). Do this in your Chili Pot.

When Onions are translucent, and Gimme Lean Sausage is browned, add in all other ingredients and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to low-medium heat for at least 30 minutes. I often let it cook along for an hour or so, adding vegetable stock if it cooks down to low for my taste.

Serve over brown rice, or on top of baked potato.

This always comes out great for me - and has a lot of room for replacements. You can put whatever your favorite beans are in - or omit the fake meats - or add in bell . If you have the time - you can use your own beans rather than canned, etc.
posted by machinecraig at 11:19 AM on November 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


My favorite cookbook for this kind of thing is Appetite for Reduction- a lot of the recipes meet your criteria (they are not all gluten or grain free, but many of them are and all of them are marked so that you can easily tell and in addition, some recipes have options for how to make them gluten-free).

And most importantly, everything I've had so far from there has been delicious!
posted by Aubergine at 11:23 AM on November 28, 2011 [3 favorites]


I make Greek avgolemono soup with quinoa instead of the usual rice or orzo. It's thick, hearty, creamy, and shockingly healthy: dairy-free, carb-free (minus the quinoa, which really you could just leave out), gluten-free, etc. The vast majority of the calories come from egg yolks, which imo are good fats blah blah. Use organic/fresh eggs for the best body.

8 cups chicken or vegetable stock (homemade is best)
4 eggs, yolks and whites separated
Juice of 3 lemons (about 1/3 cup)
1/2 cup prepared quinoa (make it in the stock for extra flavor!)
Salt and pepper

Bring the stock to a simmer. Meanwhile, with an electric mixer, whip the whites to medium peaks. While the mixer is running, add lemon juice and egg yolks. Increase the mixer speed to high, and using a cup with a spout, very slowly drizzle 2 cups of the hot stock into the egg mixture. If it foams, allow the foam to subside a little.

Take the stock off the heat and whisk in the egg mixture. Stir in the quinoa, and add salt and pepper to taste. I top it off with a little Aleppo pepper sometimes, for a bit of heat against the tart/creamy textures.
posted by firstbest at 11:24 AM on November 28, 2011 [4 favorites]


Microwave Frittata:
*Beat two eggs in the bottom of a a big, microwave-safe, bowl.
*Add a ton of veggies (peppers, squash, broccolini, mushrooms, brussels sprouts, swiss chard, etc) cut into bite-sized pieces (I cut many dishes worth at a time).
*Put a bit of cheese on top if you want, though for low-calorie you can skip this.
*Microwave high 5-6 minutes.
*Dump on a bunch of salsa and enjoy.
posted by lab.beetle at 11:47 AM on November 28, 2011


This soup is so filling that I never bother with the rice when I make it (which is fairly often).
posted by monkeys with typewriters at 12:01 PM on November 28, 2011


Some quick beverages that are low carb and fairly low calorie, but very filling:

- A glass of water (or anything) with a scoop of chia seeds. The chia seeds have fiber and protein with a smattering of omega-3 fat; people drink them to stay hydrated before running because they soak up liquid and become a gel with some crunchiness. I don't know if the hydration thing makes sense scientifically, but it seems to help me. All that aside, it is very quick, refreshing, and filling.

- Hot tea with cream and fake sweetener, or minimal sweetener. The cream doesn't add a ton of calories and it's very filling. I have ended up doing this in lieu of a full meal a few times and haven't felt hungry (though I use more cream than most).

High volume, low calorie, and low carb is otherwise kind of difficult to pull off (when I get tired of low carb, it's because I feel like I'm eating too much dense stuff). Usually you have to take a green vegetable for volume, then add a very fatty sauce to make it more satiating. This may seem high calorie in a sense, but it's satiating enough that you can end up eating fewer calories than you might otherwise, kind of like the tea. So, for example, cabbage sauteaed in butter is amazing and pretty filling, so is broccoli with cheese sauce, cauliflower with either, green beans in bacon grease, etc, but it depends by how low you mean by "low" calorie and whether you compare it to something with higher carbs that often needs more calories to actually feel satiating. Most high volume, low calorie foods still make me feel hungry an hour later, for example, but if I eat a decent amount of fat at once I won't be hungry for a long time. So if you're looking to not feel hungry, I would suggest the vegetable+fat route.

Cucumbers with cream cheese (I like to add smoked salmon) and celery with a nut butter also come to mind.
posted by Nattie at 12:40 PM on November 28, 2011 [5 favorites]


my go to low-carb, lowish-calorie snacks are:
-celery filled with cream cheese
-boiled eggs
-sugar snap peas
-raw mushrooms
-a coffee mug full of chicken or beef broth
-miso soup (use red bean paste, dashi granules, shredded seaweed, a few tbsp chopped green onions)
-sugarfree jello (if you are ok with artificial sweetners)
-dried seaweed (nori, mmm, crunchy and salty)
-coffee or tea with heavy cream
-steamed or roasted cauliflower mashed up into "rice" and then rolled in nori seaweed to make "sushi". You can add low carb veggies (mushrooms, cucumbers) in the middle, or small amounts of higher calorie low-carb stuff (cheddar cheese, canned salmon, avocado). I eat these with a bit of pickled ginger and some soy sauce with wasabi paste mixed in.

higher calorie but low carb (will keep you full longer):
-~9 (or whatever serving size you choose) pork rinds with high fat sour cream and low-carb salsa
-6 cucumber slices with olive tapenade or liverwurst
-half an avocado, possibly fried with sesame seeds
-a 4x5" chunk of cheddar cheese, or 2x2" hunk of brie
-shiritaki noodles drained then sauteed with 2 tbsp full fat cream cheese, 1 tbsp butter, 3 tbsp parmesan, 1 clove garlic, add salt and pepper = alfredo and DELICIOUS
-walnuts heated in the microwave with cinnamon and a bit of stevia/other artificial sweetener. Pour a bit of whipping cream (either whipped or unwhipped) on top if you like
-tbsp of coconut butter
-tbsp of sunbutter
-10 dry roasted almonds
-roast or steamed cauliflower with tahini, salt, and pepper
-2 squares Lindt 90% dark chocolate
-1/2 cup greek yogurt with a few frozen blueberries (2-3 tbsp)
-1 cup shredded cabbage/coleslaw mix with not many carrots with 2 tbsp full-fat mayo (hellman's), 1 tbsp greek yogurt, 1 tbsp sour cream, salt and pepper, maybe 2 tbsp grated cheddar cheese

Basically, I try to choose things that are 1. easy, 2. that I have arbitrarily limited my quantities of (ie. 9 pork rinds, 6 cuke slices, 10 almonds) to avoid consuming mass quantities, and 3. are low-carb
posted by Acer_saccharum at 1:24 PM on November 28, 2011 [4 favorites]


Spaghetti squash with whatever veggies and whatever protein you like with fish sauce and sriracha.
posted by cmoj at 1:25 PM on November 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also, the best low low carb low calorie snack is a huge glass of cold water with 1 tbsp lemon juice. Drink this when you feel hungry then wait 30 minutes and see if you still feel hungry.
posted by Acer_saccharum at 1:29 PM on November 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


This is one of my favorites, shockingly filling enough to be a satisfying supper. It's also very quick, and makes you feel all zingy and healthy.

Per person:

1 cup light veggie broth. For a nice combination of quickness and whole-foodness, you might enjoy doing something along the lines of this homemade bullion recipe. If you don't have something homemade on hand, you can use the stuff from a box, or bouillon, or miso dissolved in hot water.

About a teaspoon of minced ginger.

2 baby bok choi, both white and green parts, cut into 1"-2" pieces.

1/4 medium onion, sliced very thin.

About a quarter cup of the chopped protein of your choice: cooked chicken, tofu, whatever.

A very hearty squirt of sriracha or glob of chili-garlic sauce.

Some chopped cilantro.

Heat the broth and ginger in a covered pan while you chop the bok choi, onion, and protein. Toss them into the pot, re-cover, and simmer just a couple of minutes. Take off the heat and stir in the hot sauce and cilantro. Eat.
posted by redfoxtail at 2:36 PM on November 28, 2011


Kimchi (Korean sauerkraut) You can buy it in most large grocery stores or Asian markets or make it yourself.
posted by chocolatepeanutbuttercup at 3:47 PM on November 28, 2011


Curry roasted cauliflower! Let it roast until slightly caramelized to slightly burned, depending on your preference. I have occasionally hoarded heads of cauliflower in co-op houses because I wanted this all to myself.
posted by verbyournouns at 7:09 PM on November 28, 2011 [1 favorite]


Layered taco dip

Spread a layer of refried beans in the bottom of a pan
Top with a layer of sour cream
Sprinkle with part of a packet of taco seasoning
Add a layer of shredded cheddar cheese
Top with shredded lettuce, chopped fresh tomato, sliced black & green olives

Scoop up & eat with baked tortilla chips, I like Guiltless Gourmet brand

This does have carbs from the beans & chips, but they are whole foods with lots of fiber and very filling. Fat content can be customized by using fat-free or soy versions of cheese & sour cream, and fat-free beans. The taco seasoning might have gluten, but you can easily make your own gluten-free version... just google for some recipes.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 9:10 PM on November 28, 2011


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