Light meals

Smaller meals when you just aren’t that hungry, the recipes listed on this section are for those with a smaller appetites, or when you need quick lunch ideas. Some are also great options to serve as an appetizer at your next dinner party…

Keto Nachos

Keto Nachos
Keto Nachos

Cheesy, crispy ‘nachos’ that can be used to scoop up a generous serving of Guacamole! Try this fool-proof version, then play around changing up the cheese or herbs I used…

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 2g
(2.3%); Fat 30g (78.2%); Protein 17g (19.5%)
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Quick Guacamole

Guacamole

A quick and easy guacamole dip that you can scoop up with my Keto Nachos! Macros have been calculated on the guacamole alone, so its handy for you if you choose to use it in other ways…

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 1.5g
(4.9%); Fat 13g (90.8%); Protein 1.3g (4.3%)
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Keto Onion Rings

Keto Onion Rings

Just because you have given up flour doesn’t mean you can’t crumb-and-fry food anymore! I simply combined blitzed lean pork crackling with nutritional yeast flakes (<-my new favourite ingredient) and fried as normal. Absolutely incredible flavours and perfect to have on the side of your bunless burger. Leaner crackling is preferred for this recipe, so I used Mr Porky’s Crispy Pork Strips – which I have seen available at Tesco and Sainsbury’s here in the UK.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 5.5g
(6%); Fat 31g (76.6%); Protein 16g (17.5%)
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Keto Cloud Bread

Keto Cloud Bread
Keto Cloud Bread

I want to start by saying I did not invent this ‘bread’, nor the term ‘Cloud Bread’. I have seen this concept referred to as Oopsie bread in places too – and I am sure there is a great story behind it but I am ashamed to say I haven’t even researched what that story is. I was too excited to try it out and post my version. I initially followed a popular recipe that everyone seemed to use, but I tried it and found it left out a couple of essential techniques. Ones that would improve flavour and prevent disaster (having gone to culinary school, these were glaring omissions to me). Anyhow, after a slightly failed first attempt using said recipe, I made it my mission to improve what I had seen out there drawing from my own experience in the kitchen. My recipe below may not be for everyone, but for the Keto Community around the world, I am sure it will make you very happy! The recipe will make 6, but essentially this means 6 halves (in other words – 3 sandwiches / 3 burgers). If you want more, double the recipe and use a second tray (they can store in the fridge for up to 2/3 days).

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 0.7g
(2%); Fat 10g (71.4%); Protein 8.6g (26.6%)
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Keto Grilled Brie Mushrooms with Onion Chutney

Keto Grilled Brie Mushrooms

This lovely small meal can be served either as an appetiser for your next fancy dinner party, or enjoyed as a light meal along with some fresh salad leaves. The red onions are cooked down for a while on a very low heat, and their jammy sweetness balances the oozy Brie just perfectly. The general marrying of the two flavours are worth knowing, even for those that don’t like mushrooms. Some examples include Brie and onion jam keto sandwiches or toppings for grilled steak. And for those that LOVE the idea of a big, black mushroom – do this exact dish as it is written here and top your bunless burger with it – you will never consider a bacon and Cheddar topping again!

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 4.5g
(10.4%); Fat 14g (70.8%); Protein 8.1g (18.8%)
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Salmon & Avocado Salad with Quick-pickled Onions

Keto Salmon Avocado Salad

This winning low-carb salad boosts a combination of flavours and textures that make every mouthful perfect harmony! Small details like toasting the pumpkin seeds beforehand, quick-pickling the thinly-sliced red onions and using roasted sesame oil makes this salad sensational. I used equal amounts of watercress and pea shoots as I find watercress can be a slightly dominating flavour for this salad.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 5.1g
(3.7%); Fat 47g (76.9%); Protein 27g (19.4%)
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Low-carb Bacon-wrapped Avocado Prawn Mini Kebabs

Keto Bacon Prawn Avocado Skewers
Keto Bacon Prawn Avocado Skewers

These mini skewers are like someone said, “let’s take all the best keto items and grill them on a skewer!” Bacon? “Yes please!” Prawns? “Yes please!” Avocado? “Oh, stop it, now you are just showing off!” A little finicky to make, but totes worth it in the end. A fun, tasty appetiser at your next braai (BBQ)… 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 2.9g
(3.2%); Fat 30g (75.8%); Protein 19g (20.9%)
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Keto Pesto Pasta – using Konjac (Shirataki) Pasta

Keto Pesto Konjac Shirataki Pasta
Keto Pesto Konjac Shirataki Pasta

I have blogged about konjac (shirataki) noodles before – they are the bomb! Made out of the konjac root, the company Eat Water in the UK has (over time) perfected a noodle-looking food that is so low in carbs, I can fool myself into thinking I am enjoying a good pasta. They are high in fibre, very filling and even look like the real thing. Available in ‘rice’, ‘noodles’, ‘penne’ and ‘fettuccine’ (my favourite, they are indeed a godsend for those on keto / low-carb diets. I love big, bold flavours that slap me right through the face, and you simply cannot go wrong with an excellent homemade Basil Pesto. My pesto recipe is unbeatable and I highly encourage you to whip up a batch at home – you will never eat store-bought again. By all means, add a lovely portion of grilled chicken to it, just include it in your macros.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 4.9g
(7.4%); Fat 25g (84.8%); Protein 5.2g (7.8%)
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Thai Steak Salad

Thai Steak Salad
Thai Steak Salad

I woke up particularly well this morning. Mr Higgins* snuggled right up against me the entire night, and I woke up with his little nose breathing small amounts of snot onto my cheek: bliss. It certainly beats one Winter morning last year while still half asleep, in an effort to cover my shoulders with the duvet, my hand slipped and I punched myself in the face. Yeah, I would take a bit of Scottie snot any day.

Off topic, apologies… Having been to Thailand twice in my travels, I think its fair to say how incredible and fresh the flavours are, and there is a strong Asian influence in this salad. It is also 100% keto, fast, simple and satisfying! 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 4.7g
(5.4%); Fat 17g (46.5%); Protein 41g (48.1%)
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Keto Charred, Blistered Padrón Peppers

Keto Padron Peppers
Keto Padron Peppers

The first time I ever tried padrón peppers was in Barafina in Soho, London about 2 years ago. Funnyman and I were out drowning our sorrows for some or other reason, I cannot recall exactly but I suspect it was something financial. The irony was that we sat in this restaurant for about 4 hours and ordered three-quarters of the tapas menu items throughout the evening, washed down with plenty of wine (this was LBK- life before keto). Whatever was bothering us that night was soon forgotten (along with our financial common sense) – but the padrón peppers were thankfully as memorable as they were delicious. Eaten whole, this is a risky little appetiser as some are hot and some are not – you just don’t know what you will get. They are simply the perfect appetiser for someone who likes to live on the edge and I was delighted when I saw they are now readily available at the supermarket. I have made this several times and never encountered a spicy one, so perhaps it’s not that risky after all. A lovely, simple tapas – you should give it a try! 

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 0.7g
(5.1%); Fat 4.6g (78.3%); Protein 2.2g (16.5%)
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Keto Garlic Snails (Escargot)

Keto Escargot Snails
Keto Escargot Snails

How could I start a food blog without addressing escargot? While many cringe at the thought of eating snails, it was my favourite thing to order in a restaurant since I was very young. Back in South Africa, I could purchase them from the supermarket, but here in England I have to order them online. I even own the cheesy retro snail dishes #NERD. This recipe is uncomplicated grilled snails in garlic butter topped with Gruyere cheese and parsley. I infused the butter with garlic to avoid the chewing on clumps of garlic, which is a nifty little process to know anyway, so give it a read even if you are not into these umami-packed delights. Sigh… just too lovely as is, or mop the butter up with a slice of keto bread … enjoy.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 2g
(3.2%); Fat 24g (87.1%); Protein 5.9g (9.7%)
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Keto Breakfast Bacon & Egg ‘Muffins’

Keto Breakfast Bacon muffins
Keto Breakfast Bacon muffins

These little zero carb ‘muffins’ are something of a mini-frittata. They are very rich, so one batch could last you a couple of mornings (they store well in the fridge). Pop them in the microwave for a quick keto-friendly breakfast. Do change up the filling – mushroom, peppers and different cheese all work well. If you can’t be bothered with cleaning the muffin tin (eggs are notorious for sticking), use cupcake cases. One serving = 2 muffins.

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 0g
(0.1%); Fat 27g (73.3%); Protein 22g (26.6%)
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Keto Courgette and Brie Soup

Keto Courgette and Brie Soup
Keto Courgette and Brie Soup

Inspiration for this recipe came from my darling friend, Little Debbie Bryson who makes something similar at her sop-en-dop* birthday party every winter in Cape Town. Since moving to UK, I have sadly missed so many of them. This is for you LDB, I know it doesn’t compare to yours – but I slurped my version up with a longing lump in my throat. The recipe makes two hearty bowls, filling enough as a main meal, but you could make it stretch to 4 servings and enjoy it as a late-afternoon light meal (cup-of-soup) and halve the macros accordingly..

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 7.4g
(6.8%); Fat 31g (65.1%); Protein 30g (28%)
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Best-ever Keto Smoked Salmon Salad

Keto Best Smoked Salmon Salad
Keto Best Smoked Salmon Salad

Smoked salmon brings back such fond memories for me when I worked on a cruise ship in Alaska in my early twenties. We pretty much had smoked salmon on tap – it was excellent quality and it was bliss! Now, just to be clear, working on cruise ships may sound glamorous, but it its not. At least, it wasn’t for me. I was hired as a photographer, but the small print indicated that I also had to dress up in giant animal outfits and have my picture taken with guests like a port mascot on most days. When we docked in Ketchikan on Wednesdays, I was a beaver (see pics below for proof!); on Thursdays in Juneau, I was either a moose or a polar bear. Every Friday, at the tender port of Sitka, I was a bald eagle… And every second Monday when we docked in Vancouver, I was fully-kitted out as a Mountie, fake rifle included! Thankfully, Saturdays were sea days, so I was spared the humiliation of kids trying to knock my giant beaver head off.

Off-piste, apologies … back to the salad! This has to be one of my favourite salads to throw together. Apart from the delicious, fatty salmon and avocado generously covered in fresh lemon juice, it boasts capers, toasted pine nuts and shaved Parmesan. That’s just about all my favourite ingredients in one fairly posh salad!

– – – – – – – – – – – – per serving – – – – – – – – – – – –
Carbs 3.6g
(3.3%); Fat 37g (77.1%); Protein 2.1g (19.6%)
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