Monday, February 23, 2015

Recipe: Creamy Avocado Carb Free Pasta

A virtually no carb, low calorie, low fat, healthy, creamy, very tasty pasta dish? Sounds too good to be true, but in this case it is not! 

Hey Fit Fam,

In no way am I telling you that you should eat meals that are carb free. You all know I love my quality low/moderate GI complex carbs, eat them all day long and encourage everyone of all fitness levels to do the same! Most low carb "diets" can not only be dangerous, they are totally counter productive. You need carbs to grown beautiful lean muscle and sculpt your body! Please understand that carbs are not the enemy! It makes my heart hurt when people tell me that trainers or nutritionists encourage them to eat virtually no carbs. Carbs are not what make us "fat" -- overeating and eating the wrong carbs are what is bad!

That said, a bowl full of noodles just isn't always realistic. For me this is especially true because I eat small meals every 2.5 to 3 hours. Even healthy pastas (brown rice/quinoa) are very high in carbs, so in order to get "full" I would have to have more than I could allow myself at ONE meal. For that reason, if I were going to have real pasta, I'd rather save it for a splurge meal and carb up with as big ole' bowl full!

For a long time I cooked my yummy "Broccoli Slaw Pasta". I've also tried spaghetti squash and zoodles (zucchini noodles) and they are all great, but my pasta game was changed when I found Miracle Noodles. They literally have ZERO macros down the nutrition line. They add NOTHING to your daily count. So I can eat 3-4 ounces (or more if I really wanted) of it and then still pile my bowl full of veggies - such as mushrooms, zucchini, asparagus, red bell peppers, sugar snap peas, etc. The list of veggies is endless!!! All of those veggies do have carbs, they are just fibrous carbs (different than complex carbs like rice, potatoes, etc.)

I reserve this meal for late in the day, usually my meal 5. Why? Well, sometimes I taper my "real carbs" off throughout the day, but sometimes I don't. It really depends on the day and honestly I've tried doing this both ways and have noticed ZERO difference in terms of the way my body looks.  I simply find that I need energy more earlier in the day and closer to my workouts, so I use up most of my real carbs for the day in Meals 1-4 and my pre/post 1st phorm workout supplements. Then for Meal 5... I usually try to get all my carbs from veggies (sometimes I'll throw in a small serving of sweet potato if I haven't hit my macros that day) and for my last meal (6) I never have "carbs" so to speak. I always have a 1st Phorm Level 1 creation, which tastes like sinful carbs - but isn't.

For those of you that do not follow me on Instagram or haven't read up on all my Recipes here on the Blog, the waffle is just the 1st Phorm Level 1 Protein, little bit of baking powder and an egg white mixed up and poured into a waffle maker! You can also put it in a mug and make a mug cake, skip the egg and baking soda and make "pudding", or even add a little Xanthan Gum and pop it in the freezer and have yourself some ice cream!! Protein creations are ENDLESS!! For my nightly waffle, I top it off with some Walden Farms pancake syrup (only that brand) and a little healthy fat .. usually 1tbs of nut butter! I save some of my healthy fats for Meal 6 because healthy fats are great to have before bed. But, if you can't have the nut butter, I am in love with making "icings" out of Kroger Carbmaster Vanilla Yogurt (just 1-2 tbs, not all of it) mixed with just a pinch of any powdered peanut butter. While PB2 is good .. the creations you can make yourself on MY OATMEAL are much better! I made one called Peanut Butter Cookie Dough ... yummmmmy! You can also save a little bit of your protein powder and mix it in the yogurt! So many options!! Sorry to go off topic, it just gets me so excited, lol!

Back to Miracle Noodle Pasta. If you wanted to have some carbs in the meal that you have your Miracle Noodles, you can always add some in (black beans would be great.) Miracle Noodles can be cooked in a skillet too to make great "asian" type dishes! How yummy would they be with a homemade peanut sauce, peppers, a veggie and onions!! Speaking of homemade peanut sauce .. I am posting one soon! It's super simple!

Now, lets talk about sauces. This is where it gets tricky and could make or break you! Turn over those jars you buy in the store .. HORRIBLE! They are usually packed with calories, fat, sugar and carbs! Another reason I save "real" pasta dishes for my splurge meal!  The "sauce" I choose on my daily wellness plan depends on what I make my Miracle Noodles with.  Here are my two favorites!

Creamy Avocado Sauce (per serving) 
1 oz smashed ripe avocado
1+ tablespoon light plain greek yogurt
Lemon juice to mix/taste
Flavor God Garlic Lovers Seasoning (or garlic salt is okay)
Pepper to taste

You can blend this in a ninja, but if the avocado is ripe enough you can just use a spoon to mash/mix! Much less mess! Taste it when you are done and add more spices as needed! I go easy on everything (especially the yogurt) at first and add more as needed. This won't look like much, but trust me, it will coat everything well (as long as you aren't going overboard on your servings .. I stick with 3-4oz of the noodles, 3-4oz meat, 1/2 cup zucchini, 1/4 cup peppers, 1oz mushrooms, etc.)

Tomato Olive Oil Basil (per serving) 
1/4 cup crushed tomato (I use the one that is all natural with the lowest sugar/carbs I can find)
Spices (I use Flavor God Garlic Lovers and some extra basil)
Olive Oil -- I just use about 1 teaspoon (depending on my fat needs for the day) and you do NOT want to cook this. You want to just pour this on after cooking! Heating olive oil can actually pull out the nutrients!

As for how to prepare this recipe, you can make it all in one skillet if you wanted, but that is WAY harder in my opinion. I meal prep everything at one time. So I map out my foods for the week and then make enough veggies, miracle noodles, meat, etc., for a few days and put in individual containers, that way I can mix up my foods to keep from getting bored. It's a way you can eat the same things everyday, but in different ways if you want!!

I didn't mention it above, but of course don't forget your lean meat in this recipe! I use ground extra lean turkey, extra lean beef, or just baked chicken cut into small pieces or shredded! Ground turkey is my favorite in this particular dish!

One last thing. The noodles STINK!!!! They smell like ... fishy water. Just follow the instructions on the packet .. promise that is not what they will taste like! They honestly don't have much "flavor" but the texture is what we miss when we crave pasta anyway!

Eat Clean. Train Dirty.

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