Christmas on the Ketogenic Diet: Blog Roundup

Christmas

Christmas is just over a week away! As you know, when you have a child on the ketogenic diet, party and meal planning takes a little extra time. To help you prepare, we’ve compiled a list of blog posts with tips and recipe ideas for celebrating the holidays with a child on the ketogenic diet.

Do you know of any other useful blog posts or articles about celebrating the holidays on the ketogenic diet? Please let us know so that we can add it to the list! Also, please share your own tips for other parents in the comment section below.

We hope that your family has a very merry Christmas and happy holiday season!

Tips for Managing Your Child’s Ketogenic Diet over the Holidays (KetoConnect guest blogger)

KetoCal Christmas Recipe Ideas (KetoConnect)

A Keto Mom’s Tips for Managing the Holidays on the Ketogenic Diet (KetoConnect guest blogger)

Winter Holidays on the Ketogenic Diet (Epilepsy Foundation)

Holiday Baking (KetoCook)

Keto Gingerbread House & Gingerbread Men (KetoCook)

Although Hanukkah has already passed for 2015, we also have some tips and recipe ideas for families celebrating Hanukkah on the ketogenic diet in case you missed them.

Tips and Recipes for Making Valentine’s Day Fun for Your Keto Kid

valentinesdayLike most holidays and special occasions, Valentine’s Day can be tricky when you have a child on the ketogenic diet for epilepsy. Most valentine celebrations involve candy and other sweets not allowed on the ketogenic diet, which can make it stressful for parents trying to ensure that their child does not consume any non-allowed foods.  Parents may also find it challenging to make the day fun despite the dietary restrictions. Fortunately, little things go a long way when it comes to making special occasions fun for kids. For today’s KetoConnect Blog Post, we have some tips and ideas for small ways to make Valentine’s Day fun and special for your keto kid.

Add a Festive Touch!

You can make any meal more festive with a cute Valentine’s Day-themed straw, cup, plate, etc.

Decorate Your KetoCal!

Replace your child’s regular KetoCal with pink, strawberry-flavored KetoCal. Simply add a sugar-free, carb-free strawberry flavoring, such as DaVinci Gourmet’s strawberry syrup, to the KetoCal LQ Vanilla. Add your festive straw and voila!–You have a Valentine’s treat!

Another idea is to actually decorate the KetoCal LQ drink box. We found some cute ideas on Pinterest, such as these. You can find more ideas on our “Valentine’s Day on the Ketogenic Diet board on Pinterest! (Please note- these ideas use juice boxes, so you would just use your KetoCal LQ boxes instead).

Make Everything Heart-Shaped!

Another easy way to make Valentine’s Day special is to make your child’s favorite foods in the shape of a heart. Below are a few ideas:

  • Make your KetoCal pancakes into hearts by pouring the batter into a cookie cutter on the pan.
  • Make a heart-shaped KetoCal pizza by spreading the pizza dough into the shape of a heart before topping and cooking (you could do this by hand or using a larger-sized cookie cutter–just place the cookie cutter on the parchment paper and spread the dough inside of it to shape the pizza).
  • Make heart-shaped muffins or cupcakes using heart-shaped silicone baking cups, such as these.

Embrace Pink!

Celebrate Valentine’s Day by making recipes that are naturally festive by color! Here are some recipe ideas that are pink and perfect for Valentine’s Day.

Rasstrawberry_smoothiepberry or Strawberry Smoothie:

Our KetoCal Raspberry or Strawberry Smoothie recipes are naturally pink in color and perfect for Valentine’s Day. Optional–Top with whipped heavy cream sweetened with carb-free sweetener and serve with a festive straw!

KetoCal Cherry Float:

Add scoops of KetoCal Vanilla Ice Cream to any sugar-free, carb-free cherry-flavored soda, such as Zevia® Black Cherry or Professor Fizz (please note, these sodas are not carb-free but the carb comes from erythritol, which some dietitians do not count towards total carbohydrate– check with your dietitian first). Usually, the carb-free cherry soda is red in color but if the brand you use is not, you could add a small amount of red food coloring. Optional- top with whipped heavy cream sweetened with carb-free sweetener and serve with a festive straw!

Strawberry Panna Cotta:panna-cotta

Panna Cotta is a creamy Italian dessert. Our KetoCal Strawberry Panna Cotta recipe is tasty and perfectly-colored for a Valentine’s Day treat!

Make Awesome Non-Food Valentines!

Many valentines involve candy, but there are many other options for non-food valentine treats which are just as much fun for kids. We found some awesome ideas for non-candy valentines on Pinterest. You can check them out on our “Valentine’s Day on the Ketogenic Diet” Pinterest board. If your child’s school is having a Valentine’s Day celebration, send along some non-food valentine treats for your child and the rest of the children to enjoy. If you are friends with other parents of children in the class, you could share some non-food Valentine ideas with them as well. There are likely other children in the class with food restrictions, such as those with food allergies, and many parents try to minimize their children’s sugar intake, so you might find that other parents embrace the awesome non-food valentine idea too!

-Mallory

KetoCal Christmas Recipe Ideas

Earlier this week we posted tips for celebrating the holidays with a child on the ketogenic diet. If you missed it, be sure to check it out! To go along with these tips, today we have some KetoCal recipes for making keto-friendly Christmas treats and Christmas morning breakfast ideas. If your family celebrates Hanukkah, be sure to check out our previous blog posts on celebrating Hanukkah with a child on the ketogenic diet and KetoCal Hanukkah Recipe Ideas.

As always, consult with your child’s health care provider to adjust these recipes to meet your child’s ketogenic ratio and calorie requirements.  The ketogenic diet for epilepsy should only be used under medical supervision.

Making cookies at christmas time

Favorite Christmas Treat Recipe Ideas:

KetoCal Christmas Cookies:

Make Christmas cookies using our KetoCal Almond Coconut Cookie recipe. These are your keto-version of basic “sugar” cookies (sans sugar of course). They are easy to make and a favorite around the office (people often describe them as tasting like shortbread cookies). You can make these cookies festive by adding carb-free food coloring to the batter before cooking. I like to divide the recipe in half and add red carb-free food coloring to one batch and green carb-free food coloring to the other. Another idea is to add red or green “sprinkles” to your cookies by mixing a small amount of carb-free food coloring into the Truvia before adding it on top of the cookies. You could also use small, Christmas-themed cookie cutters to make different shapes.

KetoCal Gingerbread Cookies

KetoCal Hot Chocolate

Our KetoCal Chocolate Smoothie Recipe can be used to make tasty hot chocolate by simply omitting the ice and serving it warm. This easy recipe uses 3 simple ingredients: KetoCal LQ Vanilla, unsweetened cocoa powder, and vegetable oil. Optional carb-free sweetener can be added to taste. We like to use KetoCal LQ Vanilla for this recipe but you could also use KetoCal LQ Unflavored with additional carb-free sweetener.

Other Christmas dessert ideas:

KetoCal Blackberry Crumble

KetoCal Crème Brulee

Christmas morning breakfast ideas:

KetoCal Cinnamon and Blueberry Toast

KetoCal Pancakes

KetoCal Chocolate Muffins

KetoCal Bacon & Cheese Muffins

KetoCal Blueberry Muffins

KetoCal Cheesy Ham Tart

KetoCal Cheesy Tomato Tart

 

Merry Christmas and happy holidays everyone!

-Mallory

Tips for Managing Your Child’s Ketogenic Diet Over the Holidays

The holiday season is officially upon us! Hanukkah starts today, Christmas is just over a week away, and Kwanzaa starts the following day! This time of year tends to be very food-focused, which can make it challenging for parents of children on restrictive diets. For today’s blog post, Robyn Blackford, a ketogenic dietitian from Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, helped us to come up with some tips for managing the holidays with a child on the ketogenic diet.

Plan Ahead for Meals & Treats

  • Talk to your child’s dietitian for any recipes that you may need well before the time you need them.
  • Make the recipes in advance to ensure that they taste good and travel well.
  • For holiday meals, if possible, find out what will be served ahead of time so that you can find keto-variations to match what everyone else will be eating.
  • Make a few batches of keto treats to have handy over the holidays so that you can provide them for your child at school parties, family get-togethers, etc. when other kids are enjoying treats.

Prepare for Holiday Meals & Get-Togethers

Preparing your child:

  • It’s important to prepare your child for holiday meals, get-togethers, and parties. Talk to your child ahead of time about what to expect and practice saying “No, thank you” if offered any foods other than the foods that you bring.
  • For holiday meals, some kids may enjoy a smaller, kid-friendly, holiday-themed dinner plate. Smaller, sectioned plates can be helpful for making keto meals more appealing to children and also make it less obvious that their meal is smaller in size than a typical meal. On the other hand, some kids may prefer to have the same dinner plate as everyone else so that they don’t feel different. Talk with your child ahead of time to find out which option he or she prefers. If you go with the small, child-friendly plate, you might also bring some for all of the children attending to enjoy!

Preparing friends & family:

  • Let family members and friends know ahead of time about your child’s special diet so that they know not to offer foods other than the food that you bring for your child. By letting everyone know ahead of time, you can avoid having the conversation in front of your child, which might make your child feel self-conscious.

Preparing your child’s school:

  • If there will be a holiday party at your child’s school and food will be provided, remind your child’s teacher(s) that your child cannot have any food except for the food that you send. If there will be treats provided, send a special keto treat for your child so that he or she doesn’t feel left out. You might also send along non-food, holiday-themed treats like stickers, pencils, etc. for all of the children to enjoy.

Embrace Non-food Variations of Favorite Holiday Traditions

A lot of holiday traditions involve foods that are not allowed on the ketogenic diet, but you can still enjoy them by taking a new, non-food spin on favorite traditions.gingerbread house

  • If your family enjoys making gingerbread houses, you can make a non-food gingerbread house this year using a cardboard box, paper, cotton balls, jewels, glitter, puff balls, stickers, etc. Here’s one that we made as an example. They are just as much fun to make and they last longer!
  • Rather than filling your child’s Christmas stocking with candy, fill it with non-food treats like small toys, stickers, markers, fun socks, etc.

We hope that you find these tips helpful for managing your child’s ketogenic diet over the holidays.  With a little creativity, improvising and planning ahead, you can make your child’s holiday as normal as possible. Try to remember that although food seems like such an important part of holiday celebrations, most of our best childhood memories of the holidays have nothing to do with the food.

Happy Chrismakwanzika everyone!

-Robyn & Mallory

KetoCal Hanukkah Recipes

Earlier this week we posted a guest blog with tips and recipe ideas for celebrating Hanukkah on the Ketogenic Diet. If you missed it, be sure to check it out! To go along with these tips and ideas, we have some KetoCal recipes for popular Hanukkah foods to share today. As always, consult with your child’s health care provider to adjust these recipes to meet your child’s ketogenic ratio and calorie requirements.

KetoCal Latkes with Sour Cream Topping:

latkeLatkes are potato pancakes often enjoyed during Hanukkah. These delicious keto latkes are made with low carb vegetables, zucchini and cauliflower, instead of potatoes.

Recipe makes two medium-sized latkes.

Ingredients:

  • 25 g Cauliflower, raw
  • 65 g Zucchini, with skin – raw
  • 1 g Garlic Paste
  • 16 g Egg (raw, mixed well)
  • 12 g Sour Cream – cultured (not low-fat)
  • 12 g Mayonnaise
  • 16 g Oil, Olive
  • 21 g KetoCal 3:1 Powder

Directions:

  1. Shred raw zucchini (I used a cheese grater), then measure (raw).
  2. Chop cauliflower florets, then measure (raw).
  3. Steam cauliflower a bit to soften, either on the stove or in the microwave. Briefly mash them with a fork or mini spatula.
  4. After measured, place shredded zucchini on a plate and sprinkle a small amount of salt on top. Allow to sit for a few minutes, then blot it with a paper towel (this removes excess water from the zucchini so that the latke batter is not too watery).
  5. Mix vegetables, egg, garlic paste, olive oil and KetoCal 3:1 powder in a bowl.
  6. Heat a pan with olive oil.
  7. Pour latke batter into pan, making two “pancakes”. Cook until brown on edges, then flip and brown on the other side. If some of the latke falls apart at the edges, just use your spatula to reshape it as it cooks.
  8. Remove from heat and place on a plate to cool, Do not place on a paper towel since this will remove some of the fat.
  9. To make the sour cream topping, mix the sour cream and mayonnaise together. Spoon the mixture onto the latkes.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe; 2 latkes):

Calories: 445
Fat: 44.4 g
Protein: 6.8 g
Carbohydrate: 4.3 g
Ratio: 4:1

KetoCal Sufganiot:

donut1Recipe makes two mini doughnuts.

Sufganiot are jelly-filled doughnuts often enjoyed during Hanukkah. You can make a keto doughnut by preparing the KetoCal Pancake recipe and pouring the batter into a doughnut mold pan (thanks to our past guest blogger, Dana, for sharing her keto doughnut creation with us!).

Ingredients:

  • 26 g KetoCal 4:1 Powder
  • 8 g butter
  • 7 g cream, 40%
  • 4 g olive oil
  • 28 g eggs, raw, mixed well
  • 4 g (mL) water

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Melt the butter.
  3. Stir in the egg, cream, oil, and optional carb-free sweetener into the butter and mix well.
  4. Mix the KetoCal 4:1 powder and water, and then add into the mixture.
  5. Spray a mini doughnut mold pan with oil.
  6. Pour batter into doughnut molds (depending on the size of your molds, it should make about 2-3 mini doughnuts)
  7. Cook for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.

Optional: To add a jelly filling to your doughnuts, stir a small amount of prepared sugar-free, carb-free fruit-flavored gelatin to reach a jelly-like consistency, then spoon it into the middle of the doughnut. Note that the doughnut recipe is for a 4:1 ketogenic ratio. Adding carb-free, sugar-free gelatin will affect the ratio slightly, so work with your dietitian to balance the ratio with an additional source of fat if needed.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe, not including optional “jelly”):

Calories: 341
Fat: 34.0 g
Protein: 7.5 g
Carbohydrate: 1.1 g
Ratio: 4:1

Celebrating Chanukah on the Ketogenic Diet

zahavaChanukah begins a week from today and we are excited to welcome a guest blogger for today’s post on celebrating Chanukah while on the ketogenic diet for epilepsy. Zahava Turner, RD CSP LDN, is a ketogenic dietitian at the Johns Hopkins Ketogenic Diet Clinic in Baltimore, MD. Zahava looks forward to celebrating Chanukah with her family each year so she is happy to share some tips for families celebrating Chanukah with a child on the ketogenic diet so that they can have an enjoyable holiday too.


hanukkahChanukah and the Ketogenic Diet

The holiday season is fast approaching! Chanukah or Hannukah is a Jewish holiday that celebrates the triumph of light over darkness and spirituality in a materialistic world. The Holy Temple which had been destroyed was rededicated  in Jerusalem. It begins on the 25th of the Jewish month of Kislev. Chanukah is observed by lighting the Menorah every night for eight days in honor of the single vial of olive oil that was found in the rubble that lasted for eight days.

As with most holidays, there are special foods that are eaten during Chanukah. Popular Chanukah foods include latkes, which are potato pancakes, and sufganiot, which are doughnuts. These foods are traditionally cooked in oil to commemorate the miracle of the olive oil that lasted for eight days. The heavy use of oil during Chanukah makes it the perfect holiday for children following a ketogenic diet for epilepsy!

As a ketogenic dietitian, I know how important it is to parents for their child’s life to be as normal as possible while on the ketogenic diet. Parents may be concerned that their child will have to miss out on favorite Chanukah foods but with some creativity and help from your dietitian, you can create ketogenic versions of almost any dish. Below are some ideas for making ketogenic latkes and sufganiot for your child to enjoy during Chanukah.

Latkes:

Although potatoes are traditionally used for latkes – any shredded vegetable like zucchini, beets, kale, or spinach can be mixed with egg to bind it together and then fried in oil.

Sufganiot:

One of the families that I work with came up with this recipe for a ketogenic donut! These keto donuts make a great substitute for sufganiot during Chanukah.

Keto-donut Recipe – Created by the Lynch family

Work with your dietitian to adjust the amounts of each ingredient to meet your child’s ketogenic ratio and calorie needs.

Ingredients:

  • Egg whites
  • Cream (whipped)
  • Macadamia nuts (finely chopped)
  • Butter and
  • Peanut butter

Directions:

Spray mini bunt pan well with nonstick cooking spray.  Mix egg whites, whipped cream and nuts together – set aside.  Melt butter and peanut butter together – mix well and pour into egg mixture.  Mix together and pour into bunt pan.  Bake in the oven at 350°Fon the lowest rack until golden brown (about 35 min. for a 300 kcal meal).  Cover with aluminum foil the last 10 minutes or so of baking to prevent top from burning before completely cooked through.

Happy Chanukah everyone!

-Zahava

 Find more recipe ideas for keto Chanukah foods here.