Tag Archives: low fat

Spicy Tofu Lettuce Wraps

When I stop to think about how I have something going on every single weekend between now and then end of October, the old me would have freaked out. However the new, positive, hip (yes, hip!) me is looking forward to having things going on during the weekends and people I will get to see!

Of course being busy on the weekends, just means I’m even busier during the week.
Knowing how busy the weeks to come are going to be, I’ve been trying to get grocery shopping done at the beginning of each week so we aren’t scrambling to get certain items each night for dinner. Menu planning is a simple concept, but you know what? It really works!

One of the items on the list was extra firm tofu. Sure, it’s a normal thing in our fridge all the time, but I was in the mood to make something delicious.

Enter tofu lettuce wraps a la PF Changs. …Minus the calories, fat, MSG and sodium.
Making ‘em homemade was ridiculously easy, healthy, spicy (duh), low-carb and full of protein!

The basic recipe is from Isa Chandra (the vegan queen of cooking!) and her cookbook: Appetite for Reduction – a must own! All the recipes in there are healthy, delicious and nothing over 400 calories per serving. Total win. And it just so happens that one of the things I’ve been wanting to do is try to cook from each cookbook I have. Challenge accepted.

Spicy Tofu Lettuce Wraps
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Recipe adapted by Isa Chandra
Author:
Recipe type: Low-carb, vegetarian, protein
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 15-oz block firm tofu, cut into small cubes
  • 2 teaspoons lite soy sauce
  • Cooking spray (optional)
  • 1 small red bell pepper, small dice
  • 1 small red onion, small dice
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon Sriracha chili sauce
  • 3 tablespoons mirin (rice vinegar)
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard
  • 12 Romaine lettuce leaves
Instructions
  1. Heat a large, deep skillet or pan over medium high heat.
  2. Add the tofu (you can spray some cooking spray if needed) and cook until starting to brown. Add the soy sauce, stir and continue to cook another 8-10 minutes, or until browned on all sides. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, cook red pepper and red onion over medium heat. Add garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes and Sriracha and stir.
  4. Add the mirin (rice vinegar) and cook 3-5 minutes. If you don’t have mirin, use sherry wine or white wine vinegar.
  5. Lastly, add in the hoisin and mustard and stir well.
  6. Toss the tofu back in and coat well with the sauce.
  7. Serve it up in lettuce leaves and enjoy!

These were so easy to make and so delicious and could be made vegan or gluten-free! You could easily substitute in your favorite protein like beef or chicken or whatever, too. Give it a try, I know you will love them.

Do you do weekly menu plans?

Healthy Italian

 

Hi everyone! I hope you all are doing well!

So the title isn’t a mistake. There is such a thing as healthy Italian food. Ever since I started my new low-calorie/low-carb diet, I’ve missed pasta a lot. I’m also really nervous to eat a lot of pasta because I’m afraid of portion control. While I think I’ve, for the most part, learned how to eat the right amount, and also not eat things like cream sauce and stuff, I’m afraid I’ll still eat too much. It’s a terrible, horrible feeling that I’m hoping one day passes, but still. It is a bit of a struggle and it’s more mental than anything, but I’ll get better about it. I’m sure of it.

In light of thinking healthy Italian, REB and I made tofu parmesan on Saturday night. I never was a big fan of chicken parmesan when I ate meat, but I wasn’t a fan of deep fried things. I’m still not big on eggplant parmesan either. However, I found this recipe on Eating Well for tofu parm and decided we should give it a shot! I’m glad we did!

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It was not only delicious, but it was under 300 calories per serving. Perfection. I wish there was more protein in it, but you can always add some extra sides to make that happen. We did change a few things for our tastes, but it worked great.

Recipe adapted from Eating Well

Tofu Parmesan

•1 14-oz. block firm tofu, cut lengthwise into four “steaks”
•1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
•1/4 teaspoon salt
•1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
•1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
•2 teaspoon olive oil
•1/2 pound (one 8oz.-carton) baby Bella mushrooms, sliced
•1/2 cup onion (half a large onion), chopped
•1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
•1/2 cup total low-sodium marinara sauce
•1/2 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese, grated (can also use vegan cheese if you prefer)
•5 basil leaves, chiffonade

Method

On a plate, combine the Panko and Italian seasoning. Cut the tofu lengthwise into four “steaks” or pieces. Lightly season each side with garlic powder and salt (we didn’t use the full 1/4 teaspoon for each) and then dredge each side in the breadcrumb/Italian seasoning mix.

In a large deep skillet heat the olive oil and then add the onions and let them get translucent and slightly brown, about 5 minutes. Next add the mushrooms and let them sweat their liquid out and turn slightly brown, about 5-10 minutes.

Transfer the onions and mushrooms to a bowl. In the same skillet, which you may need to add another teaspoon of olive oil, add the tofu steaks and cook until it’s golden brown (about 3 minutes per side).

Turn the tofu, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, spoon the mushroom/onion mixture on each steak, top with a tablespoon or so of marinara sauce, then the mozzarella cheese. Cover the skillet and let the tofu continue to cook until the cheese is melted, about 2-3 minutes.

The last bit is just sprinkling some basil on top of each and serving it up! I’m glad we decided to use Panko instead of breadcrumbs. It made the tofu a little crispier. Note to self: find more recipes to use Panko! Like I said, this recipe is under 300 calories per serving and all delicious! Enjoy!

Have you had struggles with weight?
What are things you miss eating and have you found alternatives?