A Keto Dietitian’s Tips for Families Celebrating the Winter Holidays, Keto-Style!

Thanksgiving is a week from today and the rest of winter holidays are right around the corner! In today’s guest blog post, ketogenic dietitian Robyn Blackford, RDN, LDN, provides her tips for families celebrating the holidays while on the ketogenic diet. Thanks for these awesome tips, Robyn!


For people following a ketogenic diet during the holidays, it doesn’t have to be a season of additional stressors. Parents of children who follow a special medical diet, including the ketogenic diet, may even find the upcoming holidays easier to survive than they first thought.

I often hear that extended family members are very supportive of their child’s special diet. Educating others on the diet will open your family up to a potentially strong support system. Most people like to hear about the nuances of the special diet and learn how they, too, can help. Talking about the diet and getting that ‘pat on the back’ can give you just enough motivation and energy to make the next special meal. Siblings may ask if they, too, can have the yummy, magical keto food that you are preparing. What a nice, fun, supportive time that this can be for your whole family!

Whether you are hosting holidays at your house or joining others elsewhere, you are sure to be successful to sticking to your ketogenic diet during these festive days if you practice these tips.

Holidays at your house:

* Consider serving a low carb dish on your menu. There are many low carb recipes readily available, such as a cauliflower mash in place of mashed potatoes. This may be helpful for others to understand some of the details and enjoy the foods that are part of the special diet

* Using festive holiday plates, bowls, and napkins to distract from ordinary or special diet food is a welcome change for people of any age! Try using cookie cutters to make foods more appealing and brightly colored toothpicks to add fun to your holiday meal.

* Keep food out of reach for tiny guests that are on a special diet. This way they cannot snatch foods quicker than you can say no or be able to take it away from them. They can be faster than you anticipate!

Holidays as a guest:

* Consider eating or serving your keto meal before leaving the house. This way you do not have to worry about finding foods you can eat later when you or your child is hungry. Talking to the holiday host can help you be successful if you plan on eating a little something at the get-together.

* Plan to serve and eat your favorite keto foods while away from home in easy-to-warm-up containers. It can be quite a treat if you haven’t had that favorite food in a while.

* For smaller children, be sure to pack a bag full of toys and fun things to help distract them from focusing on food. Do not underestimate the power of non-food rewards during playtime!

 

In any case, make sure that you plan ahead. Mentally prepare your child to resist food that is not part of their special diet and prepare yourself to teach others about the positive impact the diet has had on your lives.

Helping people follow their ketogenic diet can be one of the best gifts you can give them during the holiday season!

-Robyn

A Keto Mom’s Tips for Managing the Holidays on the Ketogenic Diet

Our favorite keto-mom blogger, Dana Haddox-Wright, is back for another guest blog post! In today’s post, Dana shares her tips and recipe ideas for managing the holidays with a child on the ketogenic diet. Thanks for sharing with us, Dana.

Happy Holidays, everyone!


Happy Holidays

The holiday season is approaching quickly and for most families, this means taking in all of the feasts and treats that come with the territory. Food tends to be a focal point of the festivities as families get together to share in traditions either set by the family or by their religious affiliations.

Having a child on the ketogenic diet can be a challenge during the holidays. It is important to include them in our traditions as much as possible, even if their meals are much smaller than everyone else’s. Infusing keto meals with the holiday spirit requires a lot of thought, but it is not impossible. Though I am by no means an expert keto chef, I do have some ideas for making keto-friendly versions of holiday classics. To keep things simple, and I apologize ahead of time for leaving out any other holidays, I will be focusing on Thanksgiving, Chanukah, and Christmas.

THANKSGIVING MEAL:

Cauliflower and turnip make great substitutes for potatoes. Sweet potatoes may be switched to rutabaga. For our daughter, we make three dishes of the traditional Thanksgiving feast: Turkey breast, cauliflower, turnip, or rutabaga mixed with European butter, and a side of 40% cream (put into the keto calculator to fit your child’s caloric count and ratio). These dishes are easy to prepare and the kids will love to “gobble” it up (pun intended).

For more tips and recipes for Thanksgiving, here are some previous KetoConnect posts on the topic:

CHANUKAH FEAST:

I may not be Jewish, but I have wonderful friends who were willing to share some of their Chanukah favorites with me. Sufganiyot are custard or jelly filled doughnuts typically consumed every day of the Chanukah festival. I have created two types of doughnuts, and although they are not filled with anything (but love), they are delicious. One of my recipes uses ground macadamia nuts, egg, canola oil, frozen berries, a touch of vanilla, and liquid stevia to taste. A second is a nut-free recipe. It includes: baking powder, ground cinnamon, Truvia®, vanilla, coconut flour, xantham gum, egg, canola oil, and European butter. Each of the mixtures can be baked in a silicone mold (bundt shaped).

Latkes and brisket are also enjoyed during Chanukah. Though latkes are typically made with potato, one could create a keto-version with shredded or whipped turnip, a dash of onion powder, egg, olive oil with greek yogurt for dipping. In order to make it a full meal (which would make calculating it easier), one might add cooked brisket and a side of cream.

For more ideas, check out some previous Chanukah-related KetoConnect posts:

CHRISTMAS DINNER:

Some families serve turkey, some roast, and others serve ham. In a similar manner to Thanksgiving, consider substitutions. If you serve turkey, create a meal akin to what I suggested above. For roast, you can serve with butter and cooked carrots or rutabaga (with side of cream). You can also make a ham and cauliflower casserole (ham, cooked cauliflower, cheddar cheese, cream, and European style butter cooked in one pan).

For more Christmas recipe ideas, visit:

HOLIDAY SNACKS:

Chanukah gelt is typically a coin-shaped chocolate treat. An easy way to make chocolate is to melt coconut oil with unsweetened baker’s chocolate, add in liquid stevia and little vanilla. For texture, shredded coconut or whole flax seed can be added. You may be able to find coin molds and foil wrappers. The only catch is that the chocolate must be refrigerated until it is to be eaten.

Cookies can be made for any occasion. I like to keep it simple and make keto sugar cookies. Each batch makes 3 small cookies. Simply combine: melted European butter and coconut oil, mixed egg, coconut flour, Truvia®, a dash of vanilla and liquid stevia to taste. You can use different silicone mold shapes and keto-safe food colorings to make them look a little more festive.

I also make a coconut based candy that includes coconut oil, coconut flour, and shredded coconut. Simply melt the coconut oil and mix in other ingredients, then transfer into any mold and leave in refrigerator or freezer until completely set.

Finally, please try to keep your sanity during the holiday season.  Even if your child does not like certain items in the keto-versions of the traditional meals, they will always have their other favorites to fall back on.  If they like sausage, incorporate sausage.  If they like crunchy vegetables, work those in.  Making keto recipes is all about trial and error.  Feel free to test your holiday recipes beforehand, so that you know what needs tweaking.  I always tell people that I feel like a mad scientist in the kitchen, maybe that is because I am actually a little crazy.

In the end, both you and your kids will be happy that no one was left out.

-Dana

For more holiday tips and resources, visit the following KetoConnect articles:


Read more posts from Dana:

 

 

Keto-friendly Thanksgiving Recipes!

Chef Rachel

Chef Rachel

Thanksgiving is right around the corner! For keto parents, it can be difficult to come up with keto-friendly variations of traditional Thanksgiving recipes. Chef Rachel Finn, from Kansas City, KS, has saved you some time! Rachel specializes in creating recipes for individuals on special diets and often works with families of children on the ketogenic diet. Her keto Thanksgiving recipe creations are sure to please your little one’s taste buds! Below are instructions for making these recipes at a 4:1 or 3:1 ratio. We hope that your family has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Note, the recipes below are intended for individuals on a 4:1 or 3:1 ketogenic ratio. As always, consult with your health care provider to ensure that a recipe is appropriate for your child’s diet. Work with your provider to adjust recipes to meet your specific ratio and calorie requirements.


Recipes for a 4:1 Ratio

Thanksgiving Tart (4:1)

tart

Ingredients:
16 g Butter
20 g KetoCal® 3:1 powder, Nutricia NA
18 g Oil, Olive
10 g Cream Cheese, Philadelphia Brand
8 g Flour, Coconut – Bob’s Red Mill Organic Hi Fiber
11 g Egg (raw, mixed well)
2 g Bouillon, Wylers Instant-Beef/Chick granules
7 g Turkey, dark meat (no skin) – cooked
5 ml Water

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 325 °F
2. To make the tart crust, place coconut flour and KetoCal into bowl and rub in butter with fingertips. Add a pinch of poultry seasoning, dried rosemary or rubbed sage, if desired.
3. Dissolve bouillon granules in the 5 mL water. Sprinkle bouillon over top tart crust dough and mix until it becomes a stiff, crumbly pastry dough. Save 5 grams of the pastry dough for the tart topping.
4. Line tartlet tin with your crust dough (minus the 5 grams saved for the top), using your fingers to press the pastry into the edges.
5. In a bowl, mix together cream cheese, egg, olive oil, and turkey. Pour the mixture into the crust.
6. Season with salt and pepper, and top with remaining 5 g of crust dough. Add another pinch of dried rosemary on top.
7. Place on oven tray and cook for 10-15 minutes. Allow to cool before removing from tart pan.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe):
Carbohydrate: 3.87
Calories: 507
Fat: 50.87
Protein: 8.8
Ratio: 4.01:1

Mashed Fauxtatoes (4:1)faux

Ingredients:
76 g Cauliflower, cooked
8 g KetoCal® 4:1 LQ Unflavored – Nutricia
14 g Butter

Directions:
1. In a small saucepan, heat KetoCal 4:1 LQ with butter and cooked cauliflower until warm.
2. Puree mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth.
3. Season with salt and pepper.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe):
Carbohydrate: 1.44
Calories: 129
Fat: 12.88
Protein: 1.77
Ratio: 4.01:1

Thanksgiving Green Bean Casserole (4:1)gbc

Ingredients:
10 g KetoCal® powder 3:1, Nutricia NA
36 g Cream, 36%
50 g Green Beans – cooked
28 g Butter
46 g Sour Cream – cultured (not low-fat)
10 g Durkee French’s fried onions

Directions:
1. Melt butter; Mix with KetoCal 3:1 powder, sour cream, and cream.
2. Stir in green beans.
3. Pour mixture in a ramekin or a small baking dish. Season with salt & pepper.
4. Top with fried onion (if desired, save some of the onions to place on top after baking for a crunchy texture).
5. Bake in 350 °F for 15 minutes.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe):
Carbohydrate: 9.77
Calories: 566
Fat: 56.66
Protein: 4.38
Ratio: 4:1


 

Recipes for a 3:1 Ratio

Thanksgiving Tart (3:1)tart

Ingredients:
17 g Butter
20 g KetoCal 3:1 Powder
7 g Oil, Olive
10 g Cream Cheese, Philadelphia Brand
10 g Flour, Coconut – Bob’s Red Mill Organic Hi Fiber
14 g Egg (raw, mixed well)
2 g Bouillon, Wylers Instant-Beef/Chick granules
6 g Turkey, dark meat (no skin) – cooked

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 325 °F
2. To make the tart crust, place coconut flour and KetoCal into bowl and rub in butter with fingertips. Add a pinch of poultry seasoning, dried rosemary or rubbed sage, if desired.
3. Dissolve bouillon granules in the 5 mL water. Sprinkle bouillon over top tart crust dough and mix until it becomes a stiff, crumbly pastry dough. Save 5 grams of the pastry dough for the tart topping.
4. Line tartlet tin with your crust dough (minus the 5 grams saved for the top), using your fingers to press the pastry into the edges.
5. In a bowl, mix together cream cheese, egg, olive oil, and turkey. Pour the mixture into the crust.
6. Season with salt and pepper, and top with remaining 5 g of crust dough. Add another pinch of dried rosemary on top.
7. Place on oven tray and cook for 10-15 minutes. Allow to cool before removing from tart pan.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe):

Carbohydrate: 4.32
Calories: 424
Fat: 9.18
Protein: 9.18
Ratio: 3.05:1

Mashed Fauxtatoes (3:1)

Ingredients:faux
107 g Cauliflower, cooked
10 g KetoCal® 4:1 LQ Unflavored
14 g Butter

Directions:
1. In a small saucepan, heat KetoCal 4:1 LQ with butter and cooked cauliflower until warm.
2. Puree mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth.
3. Season with salt and pepper.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe):
Carbohydrate: 2.01
Calories: 138
Fat: 2.4
Protein: 2.4
Ratio: 3.02:1

Thanksgiving Green Bean Casserole (3:1)gbc

Ingredients:
13 g KetoCal 3:1 Powder
28 g Cream, 36%
54 g Green Beans – cooked
16 g Butter
34 g Sour Cream – cultured (not low-fat)
12 g Durkee French’s fried onions

Directions:
1. Melt butter; Mix with KetoCal 3:1 powder, sour cream, and cream.
2. Stir in green beans.
3. Pour mixture in a ramekin or a small baking dish. Season with salt & pepper.
4. Top with fried onion (if desired, save some of the onions to place on top after baking for a crunchy texture).
5. Bake in 350 °F for 15 minutes.

Nutrition Information (for entire recipe):
Carbohydrate: 10.44
Calories: 462
Fat: 4.41
Protein: 4.41
Ratio: 3.01:1