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food

Always Cooking with the Always Pan!

If you follow me on Instagram, you will know that I have been crushing it in the kitchen lately thanks to the Always Pan by Our Place. This purchase was fully influenced by ads I kept seeing on Instagram, but truly, this one is so worth it!!

I am not exactly someone who loves to cook. The whole idea of making a mess really turns me off to the whole thing. The Always Pan was a tempting purchase for me because it promised me fewer dishes. It has delivered on that promise.

Code: COOK15 for 15% OFF

The Always Pan

The size of the Always Pan is perfect for cooking EVERYTHING from omlettes, to chicken keema, to pasta, to daal (lentils)! Even after 20+ uses, the pan looks brand new and cleans up in no time.

This is honestly the MOST EXPENSIVE pan I have ever owned, but sometimes you really do get what you pay for. If you are in the market for new dishes, as I was, check out the Always Pan and be sure to use code COOK15 to save 15%!

Your Chick,

Rina

Quest VS. Atkins VS. Built Bar – Which Low Carb Snack is the Best?

Since starting Chicks and Salsa I have been fortunate enough to collaborate with several companies who have helped me along in my Keto Journey. Quest, Atkins, and Built Bar, and Splenda are among them. After trying a variety of snacks from these companies I have a few thoughts about where the strengths and weaknesses lie for each.

This post is in no way sponsored and please note that I am not a nutritionist. This is simply a personal review based on my experience with these companies over the past few years. If you have a bias towards a low carb or keto-friendly diet, read on.

QUEST NUTRITION

In my opinion, Quest wins on a variety of flavors that favor people who love super savory foods. From their dessert bars to their chips, and shakes, everything tastes great. HOWEVER, there is a noticeable ‘protein-y’ taste similar to the one that you would expect from a traditional protein shake detectable in everything they have. I don’t mind it, but my husband and friends don’t all love it. To try my favorites from QUEST, click below.

ATKINS

When my daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and I started to learn about carbohydrates and seeking out carb-conscious snacks, Atkins was my first stop. They really have a delicious collection of snacks, these Sweet and Salty clusters are a favorite as are these ‘peanut m&m’ candies. I quickly realized, however, that I have a sensitivity to sugar alcohols that upsets my stomach. Atkins uses a sugar alternative called Maltilol which is known to cause gastrointestinal issues. Atkins is great but needs to be eaten in moderation. Also of all three companies, I am reviewing today, their ingredient list is the longest- which I don’t love.

BUILT BARS

I remember when I first tried these, I was convinced I had found the best bars out there. Built Bars truly taste like a candy bar with the texture of a Milky Way. Even though the flavors are great, after a while the texture kind of starts to ‘get old.’ I keep a few of my favorite flavors around but only indulge in these once every week or two.

SPLENDA

I truly prefer Splenda ten out of ten times to Stevia. Above all, for coffee drinkers, their creamers are literally the best. They are not available for sale in my local grocery store so I shop them on Amazon.

For other low carb and Keto tips, check out my posts below!

Your Chick,

Rina

Keto Banner

Desi Vegetarian Keto Meals

This is by far the most requested post from me since I started doing ‘Keto Sprints’ over a year and a half ago.  I am hoping that this will be the start of an ongoing share that I put together to help you achieve your weight loss goals as I have for the first time in ten years.  See my initial results here.

Fit and Healthy

Although I am not a vegetarian, I have been asked time and time again for a menu that will work for vegetarians. Although it was not easy, I have compiled these meal ideas for you.

Before we get into what you can eat, let’s talk about Keto. 

What is the Keto Diet?

“Ketogenic” is a term for a low-carb diet (like the Atkins diet). The idea is for you to get more calories from protein and fat and less from carbohydrates. You cut back most on the carbs that are easy to digest, like sugar, soda, pastries, and white bread. So although it may feel odd at first to be eating so many fats, there is science behind this.

When you eat less than 50 grams of carbs a day, your body eventually runs out of fuel (blood sugar) it can use quickly. This typically takes 3 to 4 days. Then you’ll start to break down protein and fat for energy, which can make you lose weight. This is called ketosis. It’s important to note that the ketogenic diet is a short term diet that’s focuses on weight loss rather than the pursuit of health benefits. 

— Source: WebMD

Desi Keto Meals

You will love the burst of energy you feel when depriving your body of sugar.  Carbs are addicting and without them you will feel the difference in your appetite as well as mood.

keto meals

Carb Counts for Traditional Indian Foods Can be Found Here

Things to Remember

-Magic numbers: 35-50 g Carbs Daily, Protein 20% daily diet intake , Fats 75% daily diet intake, you need a LOT of fat in your diet when you eliminate carbs therefore cheese and avocados are now your best friends.

-Count NET CARBS (Carbs MINUS grams of Fiber for Net Carbs)

-You can actually eat anything on Keto (cookies/pizza etc.) just watch your  numbers and when you are out of carbs, make a different choice. I definitely eat things like pizza from time to time, but I consider those numbers in my daily count. With pizza I sometimes just eat the cheese – its actually really satisfying not eating the WHOLE piece.

-Fats are your friend, eat butter/avocados/pistachios/almonds liberally.

-Limit fruit intake.  Bananas have 12-15 carbs, grapes are approximately 1 carb each!  Stick to berries in ¼ cup portions.

-Total Carbs per day should stay under 35-50 grams TOTAL, it is important to keep count, if you don’t know, google it.  Here is an incredibly helpful link with carbs for ALL INDIAN foods.

Some of My Favorite Low Carb Finds

What to Expect

If you are doing this right, after about day three you should not feel hungry.  The combination of protein and fat in your diet should keep your satiated. 

After Three Days: Check to see if you are in ketosis, I use these sticks.

After One Week: You should start seeing some weight loss.

After Two Weeks: You will see a difference in your body. 

I hope you found this post to be helpful. The Keto Diet has changed my ability to manage my weight and my outlook on food completely. If you would like to see more meal options, drop me a comment and I will start working on a follow up.

Your Chick,

Rina 

Most Delicious Protein Bar I Have Ever Tasted #notsponsored

Its official, I have finally found the best tasting protein bars that money can buy!  Let me start off by saying that this post is in no way sponsored and as part of our fitness journey that Sonia and I have shared on Instagram, we are also on a journey to eat better. 

Delicious Protein Bar

Snacking is our ultimate weakness, after all we are Chicks And Salsa! So eating leaner and lighter between meals has been on our list of things to improve upon with summer winding down.  We have both been working out 3-4 times per week and drinking plenty of water, but what about those cravings??

Our Dad is a HUGE protein bar buff and has been for years.  Over time, we have tried almost ALL brands out there if they are available for sale at Costco or GNC.

I recently had the opportunity to sample Built Bars and these are a true GAME CHANGER.   I am not sure how they have done it, but these bars taste and feel like a Milky Way bar and here are the numbers:

110 calories, 4.0 g fat, 2.5 g saturated fat, 13 g carbohydrates, 4 g sugar, 15 g protein, 6 g fiber, 3 mg sodium

18 Flavors
The numbers

And with 7 net carbs, this bar is perfect for the Keto diet too (check out my journey on Keto here). 

With 18 different flavors, each one is better than the one before it! You will never get sick of them.

A look inside the Built Bar

With so many flavors and right at around $1.75 per bar, these bars are perfect for satisfying those tastebuds and cravings. 

Add these to your cart today, thank me later.

Your Chick,

Rina