So… It’s been about 2 weeks since I gave up nightshades

Here’s how it’s going so far…


Our household has been gluten free for several years now, so the main meals haven’t been difficult to plan.

One meat and two veggies.

A little complicated

Seasonings have been a little bit of a challenge, but I love granulated onion and garlic and they add a lot of flavor.

I’m learning a lot about seasonings I rarely use, such as parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. 

After much trial and error, I developed my own recipe for breakfast sausage, and it’s wonderful!


  • Giving up potatoes. 

When we went gluten-free, we added in a lot of potatoes.

We have been substituting roasted radishes for fried potatoes and pan-fried turnip slices for french fries.

Cauliflower Leek Soup is a good replacement for potato soup. 

They taste really good, but they don’t have that “comfort food” effect that I get from the potatoes.

  • Finding places to eat or food to take with me when I’m running errands all day.

Since I live in a rural area, I have to do most of my shopping online or an hour and a half from home. 

On my errand day, I try to get absolutely everything done before I head back home. 

There are no microwaves or refrigerators available, so I have to take foods that can be stored in a small ice chest and don’t require heating.

I’m still working on this, and will post about it in the future.

Driving me crazy…

The search for desserts.

My allergy to coconut makes this really complicated. Sigh.

I’m making baked apples with cinnamon and mace, since I can’t have nutmeg. I bake them without sweetener, and then drizzle them with a little honey or pure maple syrup when I reheat them.

Sliced strawberries with a little honey is a good dessert, but they are really expensive this time of year.

Other than that, the only thing I have come up with is a spoonful of jelly. More specifically, Polaner All Fruit. 

I’m hoping that reducing the inflammation in my body will allow me to eat more fresh fruits when Spring finally arrives.




Sausage Fritatta - Low Carb, Ketogenic


This is a go-to recipe that we love!

It makes up quick and easy in our favorite black skillet, and it has a slight southwestern taste from the green chilies



Sausage Frittata
Serves 4
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  1. 6 large eggs
  2. 1/3 c. heavy cream
  3. 16 oz. bulk breakfast sausage
  4. 1/2 small onion, chopped
  5. 1 can (4 oz.) chopped green chilies
  6. 6 oz. shredded colby-jack cheese
  7. 2 T. olive oil
  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together eggs and heavy cream. Stir in chilies. Set aside.
  2. Place sausage and onion in a 12" cast iron skillet. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring often to break up the sausage. Cook until no pink remains. Drain.
  3. Return skillet to stove top over medium-low heat.
  4. Add sausage/onion mixture and 1/2 of the cheese to eggs and stir briefly to combine. Pour into skillet.
  5. Cover and cook 10-12 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat broiler.
  7. When the eggs are set around the edges and almost done in the middle, top with remaining cheese and place under the broiler. Watch closely and broil until the cheese is completely melted. Brown slightly, if desired.
  8. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes before cutting.
Diet With Us

Since we have been changing over to a clean-eating lifestyle, we have become big fans of the Honeysuckle Italian Turkey Sausage

We used it for pizza, omelets, minestrone soup, and pizza soup.

It was on our list of staples… things we didn’t ever want to run out of.

As with most of the grocery items we have come to love, our local stores are no longer carrying it. Sigh.

So… I had to open my seasoning cabinet and figure out how to make my own.

Sometimes, necessity creates an opportunity for improvement.

We like this recipe even better, and it’s super easy!

Italian Turkey Sausage
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  1. 1 lb ground turkey
  2. 1/3 c. grated Parmesan
  3. 1/2 t. salt
  4. 1 t. granulated garlic or garlic powder
  5. 1/2 t. granulated onion or onion powder
  6. 1/2 t. ground fennel seed
  7. 1 1/2 t. Italian seasoning
  1. Mix well.
  2. Chill overnight to blend flavors.
  3. Brown and drain for use in recipes, or form into patties for Italian Turkey Burgers.
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Green Eggs and Grapefruit

Green Eggs – No Ham!

Heat in small saucepan:

1 – 2 tsp EVOO


1 sliced Green Onion

1 c. chopped fresh Spinach

When spinach is wilted, add:

2 beaten Eggs

In a medium frying pan, cook over med heat, pushing eggs to center as they cook.

Cook until done, but not dry.

Remove to serving plate.

Top with:

1 Tbsp. Grated Cheese


Makes 1 serving


21-Day Fix Container Count:

1 Green, 1 Red, 1/2 Blue, 1 Tsp

Photo also includes:

1/2 Grapefruit, 1 Purple

1 c. Organic Detox Tea


Bob’s Red Mill is one of my favorite brands. I love their old-fashioned methods and values, and their healthy, dependable products.

The company was established in 1978 by Bob Moore and his wife, Charlee. They built this business as a way to provide high quality foods to people across the country. 

Whole grains are ground on quartz millstones at cool temperatures to maintain the highest nutrition. The resulting product is packaged in clear bags so that we can see what we are buying.

From start to finish, the entire process is done in their own facility in Milwaukie, Oregon.

Their old-fashioned techniques and dedication to providing a consistently great product have made Bob’s Red Mill a name you can trust.

And, if the integrity of the company wasn’t enough reason to love Bob, a few years ago he demonstrated his enormous generosity by giving his company to his employees.


With that being said, I have to tell you that was very disappointed in the results when I made a batch of cookies using their Gluten Free Shortbread Cookie Mix. 

I realize that gluten-free baking can be a real challenge. That’s not news to any of us. 

However, I have been working with GF products for a couple of years now, and I have been able to find ways to correct a lot of issues and make delicious food that cannot even be recognized as gluten free.

Unfortunately, I was unable to do anything with this mix that I would call a success.

And, it wasn’t for lack of trying.

I mixed up the batter as instructed.

It was too dry, and refused to form into a cookie, so I added 2 T. cashew milk.

It was still just a little crumbly, but I could form balls with it, so I rolled a dozen, pressed them slightly, and sprinkled them with some raw sugar.

The first dozen out of the oven looked and smelled wonderful. 

Bob's Mill Shortbread (1)


I handed one to my daughter for the first taste test.

She took a bite, and was smiling and nodding her head until I asked her how they were.

She held her finger up for me to wait, and I realized she was having some trouble…

She looked like she had a mouth full of peanut butter that she couldn’t figure out what to do with.

So I took a bite of one, and completely understood what she was experiencing. It’s hard to describe…

It was dry, and felt like it was sucking all the moisture out of my mouth, but sticking everything together at the same time. Neither of us finished the cookie.

As we stood there looking at all this batter, we tried to figure out what on earth I could do to it so that we could salvage our investment.

We decided to try making thumbprint cookies out of them, so there would be something to break up the thick, dry, gooey, weird consistency. 

I rolled another dozen, pressed them, sprinkled them with raw sugar, and then depressed the centers and filled them with strawberry jam. 

Bob's Mill Shortbread (4)


These were better, a little easier to eat, but definitely not anything worth writing home about. 

We discussed more options, and I decided to try making sandwich cookies out of the rest. 

For these, I pressed the dough flat with a glass, and sprinkled them lightly with granulated sugar.

I let them cool, piped chocolate frosting on one, and topped it with another. 

Bob's Mill Shortbread (6)


These were the easiest ones to eat, but still a little bit of a challenge.

The last idea I had was to use the original batch as a crust for individual cheesecakes.

I lined a cupcake pan with muffin papers, put one cookie in the bottom of each, and pressed them slightly, to crush them just a little.

I used the standard cheesecake recipe inside of the Philadelphia cream cheese package to make the batter, and divided it between the muffin cups.

I baked them at 350 and just kept an eye on them until they were done.

Bob's Sugar Cookie Cheesecakes


Cheesecake isn’t my specialty, and these aren’t very pretty since they wrinkled a little after chilling them, but this was really the best way to consume these shortbread cookies.

Having established the fact that the best way to eat these cookies is to use them as a crust and hide them under a bunch of cream cheese, I have to say, it’s not worth it. 

Between the cost of the mix, and having to bake the cookies before using them as a crust, I can assure you – I won’t be making these again.

I have given some thought to using the mix as a base for that awesome cream cheese-chocolate pudding-whipped topping dessert, but I have more affordable ways of making that. If you have already purchased this mix and aren’t sure what to do with it, I would recommend giving that a try.

If anyone has any tips or ideas on how to make this mix work, please let us know.

I really hate to give up on any of Bob’s products, but, in my opinion, this one was just a complete fail.

This omelet is fairly simple to make, and it fits wonderfully in most of the healthy diets we are studying! 

Spinach Omelet
Serves 1
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  1. 1 T. chopped onion
  2. 1 small mushroom, chopped
  3. 3/4 c. chopped fresh spinach
  4. 2 eggs, beaten
  5. 1/3 c. grated cheese
  6. 2 T. salsa
  7. Water
  8. Cooking spray
  1. Place the onion in a small frying pan with about 1 T. water. Cook on medium high until the water evaporates and the onion is slightly translucent. Transfer onion to a small bowl.
  2. Spray the frying pan with cooking spray, and spread the spinach evenly in the pan. Add 1 t. water, cover and heat over medium high until the spinach is wilted.
  3. Pour the eggs over the top of the spinach. Cover and cook over medium heat until the eggs are almost done. Flip the eggs and spinach at the same time.
  4. Cover 1/2 of the eggs with the onion, mushrooms, and 1/2 of the cheese. Fold the other half of the eggs over the top of the onion mixture.
  5. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the omelet. Cover. Remove from heat and let set until the cheese is melted.
  6. Serve with salsa.
Diet With Us

I’ve never been a fan of eggs! My mother could cook them a million different ways, but the only way I could choke them down is covered in salsa, hot sauce or A-1. If it was bold, I hoped that it would mask it! My feelings towards eggs have recently changed, as I attempted something to alter the texture. This Open-Faced Omelet is exactly what I was looking for! A crispy top, lots of flavor, and my favorite pizza toppings really brought this to my breakfast plate every morning for a week!

Crispy Open-Faced Omelet
A crispy topping of cheese, mushrooms, onions and pepperoni!
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  1. 1 mushroom, (sliced)
  2. 1/8 cup onion, (diced)
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 6 slices of pepperoni
  5. 1/4 cup Mozzerella cheese
  6. 1 tablespoon butter or margarine
  7. Garlic powder
  8. Onion powder
  9. Italian seasoning blend (optional)
  10. Salt
  11. Pepper
  1. In an omelet pan, over medium heat, melt butter.
  2. Add sliced mushroom and onion. Saute until lightly browned.
  3. Beat both eggs.
  4. Turn heat to medium/medium-low.
  5. Evenly disperse mushrooms and onions.
  6. Add slices of pepperoni.
  7. Top with Mozzerella cheese.
  8. Pour beaten eggs evenly over "toppings."
  9. Sprinkle with seasonings (garlic and onion powder, Italian seasoning blend, salt and pepper).
  10. Place lid on top and cook almost throughout, on bottom side.
  11. Flip, cook until bottom is firm as well.
  12. Serve.
  1. Omelets may require practice... Don't get discouraged.
Diet With Us

 I just had an interesting realization. I am older than Jello Poke Cake. Sigh. I remember when my mom first started making it… I was in high school. That means I am a lot older than Jello Poke Cake!

 Looking back, what I remember most about this cake is that everyone thought it was so good! Except me. I hated it. I have made one Jello Poke Cake in my life, and it was because someone else requested it. I had one bite – just enough to confirm that I still hate it.

 However, in the midst of all that loathing, there was something I loved about it. Something that made it worth it to suffer through at least one piece.

 The cake that my mom made had a special ingredient. Something you can’t find any more. Sigh. It was wonderful. The greatest thing to ever happen to a jello cake. It was light, and airy, and rich, and creamy, and dreamy and wonderful. It was Whip ‘n Chill.

 Since I was a teenager at the time, I was naturally avoiding spending any unnecessary time with my mother, and I certainly wasn’t going to allow myself to learn anything from her. Therefore, I have no idea how this marvelous concoction was made. I assume it was similar to mixing a package of Dream Whip, but I don’t know if it was pourable or required spreading, or if she let the cake chill before topping it with this memorable layer of lusciousness.

 What I do know is there was this nasty jello cake, topped with this amazing strawberry layer, which was then topped with Dream Whip. And the only way I could get that yummy strawberry goodness was to eat. that. cake.

 This required strategy, because if I ate the top part first, I would never eat. that. cake. And, if I threw it out, I would get caught and I would never get any Whip ‘n Chill.

 The only way to get through it was to lay the slice of cake on its side and start at the bottom, and get a large glass of milk to wash it down. I. really. hate. Jello. cake. Sigh.

 But… once I got to the top, it was so worth it! Never before, and never since, has there been a product like Whip ‘n Chill. If you have never had it, there is no way to explain it to you. There are forums on the internet dedicated to people who are still mourning over the void left in their lives by the loss of Whip ‘n Chill. Seriously. You can look it up. People are begging to buy boxes of this stuff that are leftover from the 70’s. It’s that good.

 So, obviously, when I started my Low Carb lifestyle, Jello Poke Cake was not on my list of recipes to re-create. Whip ‘n Chill was gone, so I never even gave it another thought.

 Until I found this. As I was making it, I was just thankful to have found a quick, affordable low-carb dessert. I’m sure you already know the punch line, but at the time, I had no idea what a treat I was in for!

When I tasted it, I think I cried. It was like a mouth-full of magic, and I was instantly transported back to the 70’s. Sitting by the pool after a swim on a hot summer day, eating the top of the Jello cake… Mmmm…. So, back to the future, where Homemade Whip ‘n Chill became part of my low-carb diet menu!

This is really personal for me. I consider this recipe to be my reward for never throwing it out, and always suffering through that cold, horrible, plastic jello cake to get to the top. (No offense, Mom. I know I’m the only person on the planet who doesn’t like Jello Cake.)

 Whip ‘n Chill apparently came in several flavors – vanilla, chocolate, lemon, and strawberry. Fortunately, the first flavor I made from the recipe below was strawberry, otherwise I might not have made that immediate connection. However, I have branched out to other flavors, which I also thoroughly enjoy.

 Strawberry Jello = Whip ‘n Chill – exactly like I remember!

Orange Jello = a Dreamsicle flavor

Peach Jello = a light Peaches and Cream (slightly artificial, but yummy)

Lemon Jello = Pure Refreshment

Raspberry = the boldest of them all!

 I hope you all enjoy this. If you never had Whip ‘n Chill in the 70’s, it may not be as spectacular to you. Maybe it’s the trip down Memory Lane that makes it so great – after all, it’s a pretty plain and simple dessert. But, please, pass this recipe along to any fellow Whip ‘n Chill mourners. They will love you forever! And, if you decide to use it as a topping for your Jello Poke Cake, please let me know how it works out. I’m curious, but not enough to make it myself!


Jello Cream Mold
Serves 4
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Total Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
  1. 1 pkg (4-serving size) sugar-free jello
  2. 1 c. boiling water
  3. 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  4. 1/2 c. heavy cream
  1. Dissolve jello in boiling water.
  2. Pour into blender with cream cheese and cream. Blend well.
  3. Pour jello mixture into a mold or individual bowls.
  4. Chill several hours or overnight.
  5. Unmold (if necessary) and serve with desired garnishes.
Adapted from Low Carb Friends
Adapted from Low Carb Friends
Diet With Us
 by Cynthia McInvale

I’ve never met a potato that I didn’t love. Baked, fried, mashed, shredded into hash browns, cut up in soups – I love it all! The only down side to potatoes is the amount of time it takes to cook them. Therefore, when I bake potatoes for a summer barbeque, I always bake more than I need so they can be used in other recipes. I will also toss some in the oven next to a casserole or a batch of brownies. It’s all about time management and energy conservation.

This is one of those quick and easy recipes that won’t heat up the house too much or require you to spend half the day in the kitchen. Because I cheated. I admit it. However, in my defense, there is a trick to cheating and getting away with it. I always use a high-quality product as a base for my “almost homemade” recipes. In this case, I use Imagine Organic Potato Leek Soup and just add some yummy ingredients. 

Almost Homemade Potato Soup
Serves 3
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  1. 3 strips of bacon, uncooked
  2. 1 small onion, diced
  3. 3 stalks of celery, sliced
  4. 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  5. 3 medium potatoes, baked, cooled and diced
  6. 1 16 oz. container of Imagine Organic Potato Leek Soup
  7. 6 oz. colby/jack cheese, grated
  8. 3 T. sour cream
  9. 1 green onion, sliced
  10. Fresh ground pepper
  1. Cut bacon in small pieces. Place in a medium saucepan and fry over medium heat until crisp, separating pieces as they begin to cook. Leaving as much grease in the pan as possible, remove from the grease with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel. Set aside.
  2. Return the pan to the heat. Add the onion, celery and garlic to the pan and saute until tender. Add potatoes and Potato Leek Soup. Heat through.
  3. Ladle soup into three bowls. Top each with an equal portion of grated cheese, sour cream, green onion, and bacon pieces. Grind a little pepper over each and serve.
Diet With Us
 by Cynthia McInvale


Baked Tilapia

Baked Tilapia


I love fish! 

The photo above is Baked Tilapia – fast and easy!

I pat the fish dry with a paper towel and lay it on a plate.

Spray one side with olive oil and sprinkle it with the seasoning mix below.

Spray a cookie sheet with olive oil and lay the fish on the cookie sheet, seasoning-side down.

Spray the top of the fish with olive oil, and sprinkle it with the seasoning.

Bake at 400° for 10 – 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish.

I like mine with the seasoning a little crispy, so I broil it to look like the picture.

This tastes great with a serving of brown rice, steamed broccoli, and a fresh salad!

Fish Seasoning
Not too spicy, with a little bit of a smoky taste!
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  1. 1 Tbsp. smoked paprika
  2. 1/2 tsp. salt
  3. 1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  4. 1/4 tsp. ground red pepper
  5. 1 1/2 tsp. crushed dried basil
  6. 1 tsp. onion powder
  7. 1/2 tsp. ground thyme
  1. Mix all ingredients and use to season fish before baking, frying, or grilling. Store any remaining seasoning in an airtight container.
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NOTE: I realize that Tilapia is semi-controversial right now. This seasoning would work well on any white fish or chicken!