Showing posts with label keto recipes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label keto recipes. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe

Today, I'm delighted to share my review of my luscious new hot chocolate recipe, just in time for Christmas and other winter holiday celebrations and the long, chilly weather during the months that follow them. 

Once you taste this decadent cold-weather treat, you'll never want to settle for ordinary hot cocoa again! It's so rich, thick, intensely chocolaty, and indulgent, no one who tastes it will ever guess—or even believe—that this fabulous beverage is also sugar-free and very low in carbohydrates. That means you can enjoy it with your family and friends, even if some of are following a ketogenic diet. 

My carb-loving husband and I, both serious hot chocolate snobs, agree that it's The Ultimate Hot Chocolate Recipe, keto or not!  

Main image - mug of cocoa against snowy background, overlaid with text "The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe"
©2020 Margaret Schindel, all rights reserved

Gourmet Hot Chocolate Any Chocolate Connoisseur Will Love (Just Don't Tell Them It's Keto!)

'Tis the season for hot chocolate! During Christmas and other winter holidays, and straight through the cold weather months, hot cocoa a welcome indulgence, warming us from the inside out after we come in from the cold (and especially after we've been playing outside in the snow...or shoveling it!). Unfortunately, for those of us who follow a low carb or ketogenic diet, most keto recipes for low carb hot chocolate just aren't all that tasty or satisfying. 

After trying and being disappointed by five or six different keto recipes for hot cocoa and a couple of low carb hot chocolate mixes, I finally realized the only way to find a keto hot chocolate recipe that would live up to my very high expectations standards would be to develop one myself. 

It took a lot of experimentation, but the final result definitely has been worth all the time and effort I invested into the process. In fact, this is the closest thing I've ever sipped to the gold-standard chocolat chaud L'Africain at the world-famous Angelina café in the Rue de Rivoli in Paris (where I had the good fortunate to enjoy a cup once, many years ago). 

That's why I'm confident that my recipe truly is worthy of the title, The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe. In fact, second only to Angelina's iconic L'Africain, I think this may well be The Ultimate Hot Chocolate Recipe, period.

Photo of two large mugs of keto hot chocolate, sitting on a pink and ivory flowered cloth placemat
©2020 Margaret Schindel, all rights reserved
High carb or keto, hot chocolate doesn't get any more sumptuous than this recipe!

Hot Chocolate or Cocoa? Both!

As my fellow Review This Reviews contributor Wednesday Elf explained in her recent review of National Cocoa Day (which is just five days away, on December 13), although both terms for this beloved beverage are often used interchangeably, the main difference is whether they are made with real chocolate (often ground) or with cocoa powder. 

As I experimented with different combinations and proportions of ingredients for my recipe, I found that mixing my favorite Dutched cocoa powder, sugar-free chocolate chips, and Good Dee's Sipping Chocolate low carb hot cocoa mix resulted in the perfect, intense, dark chocolate flavor I wanted.

Combining the cocoa and dark chocolate with macadamia milk (instead of the more commonly used almond milk), heavy cream, and 1/8 teaspoon per serving of xanthan gum, and then using a handheld immersion blender (aka stick blender) to emulsify all the ingredients and thicken the mixture, worked synergistically  provided the rich, creamy taste and smooth, luxurious consistency that other low carb hot chocolate recipes and mixes I had tried lacked. Salt and pure vanilla extract to complement the dark chocolate flavor that, together with the smoothness and creaminess  rounded out the flavor profile, smoothing out the intense, dark chocolate flavor with to create The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate. 

Regular, Mint, and Salted Caramel Keto Hot Chocolate

Once I had perfected the recipe, I decided to take this challenge to the next level, creating low carb versions of my husband's favorite hot cocoa flavors that we could both could enjoy: keto mint hot chocolate and keto salted caramel hot chocolate. 

I hadn't thought this recipe could get any better, but I was mistaken. The mint and salted caramel variations turned out to be even more delicious than the original version!

The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe

You Don't Have to Follow a Low Carb Diet to Love It!


Years ago, I developed a fabulous sugar, fat, and calorie-laden hot chocolate recipe for my husband, and it spoiled us both for any other hot cocoa. I never wrote down the recipe or measured the ingredients; it was all in my head, and I just tasted and adjusted the amounts and proportions as I went along each time I made it.
©2020 Margaret Schindel,
all rights reserved

Unfortunately, after I made the decision for medical reasons to follow a ketogenic diet, I stopped making my husband's favorite winter treat because I could no longer taste and adjust the flavor during the process (because of the sugar). And we both missed it a lot. 

So, I challenged myself to come up with a new low carb hot chocolate recipe that would taste as rich and decadent as my original recipe, and could meet or exceed my husband's extremely high standards for his favorite beverage. 

I succeeded beyond either of our wildest dreams. Now, I'm sharing the recipe so you and those you love can enjoy it, too, whether or not they are watching their sugar or carbohydrate intake. 

Prep Time:  
10 minutes

Cook Time:
10 minutes

Total Time:
20 minutes

Recipe Yield:
Four servings
(approximately 6 fluid ounces per serving)

Calories:
136 kcal
per serving

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Measure the dry ingredients (Good Dee's Sipping Chocolate, Ghirardelli Majestic Premium unsweetened cocoa powder, granulated BochaSweet sugar replacement, xanthan gum, and salt) into a small bowl. Mix well (pressing out any lumps of cocoa) and set aside. 

  2. Pour the Milkadamia unsweetened vanilla macadamia milk into a 2-cup Pyrex glass measuring cup and microwave for 60 seconds or until hot. Remove from microwave.

  3. Place the sugar-free chocolate chips and ghee or butter into a 4-cup Pyrex glass measuring cup. Microwave on high for 45–60 seconds, depending on how powerful your microwave is. Stir the mixture well to melt as much of the chocolate as possible, then repeat, stirring until the chocolate is completely melted.

  4. Stir the hot macadamia milk into the melted chocolate mixture in the 4-cup Pyrex measuring cup until well incorporated. Then, microwave for another 60 seconds. 

  5. Stir in the dry ingredients, and then use an immersion blender (without any attachments) to blend the contents of the measuring cup. (I find it helpful to glide the immersion blender slowly over the bottom of the cup and tilt it slightly in different directions.) 

  6. Add the heavy cream, then blend with the immersion blender for 20–30 seconds, until the mixture thickens slightly. 

  7. Microwave on high for 30–60 seconds, or until very hot, and stir in the vanilla extract.

  8. Divide evenly among four small mugs or two large mugs. Top with optional whipped cream, if desired. Serve immediately. 

Keto Mint Hot Chocolate Recipe Variation

For the best peppermint or mint hot chocolate you’ve ever tasted:
  • Replace the vanilla extract with 3/8 to 1/2 teaspoon (to taste) of pure peppermint extract or pure mint extract. 
I highly recommend using either Watkins Pure Peppermint Extract or Watkins Pure Mint Extract (which contains a blend of spearmint and peppermint oils). Either one will let you enjoy the fresh, minty flavor of a traditional candy can stirrer in your hot cocoa, but without all the sugar, corn syrup, and artificial flavoring and food coloring. 

Keto Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Recipe Variation

Transform this beverage into a keto salted caramel hot chocolate so divine, it will make you close your eyes and purr with pleasure when you take your first sip! Just make these simple tweaks to my original recipe:
  • Increase the amount of salt to 3/4 teaspoon.
  • Increase the vanilla extract to 1/2 teaspoon.
  • At the end of step 4, blend in 4 tablespoons of ChocZero Caramel Sugar-Free Syrup to the hot chocolate mixture.

Optional Whipped Cream Topping

This sumptuous hot chocolate is even better topped with a dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream. Here's how to make a delicious low carb version. 
  1. At least 30–60 minutes before you plan to make this Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe, put some heavy whipping cream in a mixing bowl, stir in a few drops of vanilla, mint, or peppermint extract, and sweeten to taste with your favorite keto-friendly, natural, powdered sweetener (confectioner's sugar replacement), such as powdered BochaSweet, powdered monkfruit allulose blend sweetener, or powdered allulose. Place the mixing bowl with the flavored cream in the refrigerator to chill, along with a wire balloon whisk or the whisk attachment of your electric mixer. 

  2. After making the hot chocolate recipe through step 6 (before you heat the hot chocolate mixture for the last time and stir in the extract), whip the cold, flavored, lightly sweetened cream in the chilled bowl with the chilled whisk.

  3. Finish preparing the hot chocolate recipe (steps 7 and 8), topping each mug with a cloud of freshly whipped cream. Finish the whipped cream topping with a light dusting of unsweetened cocoa, if desired.

Recipe Notes

  • Good Dee’s Sipping Chocolate is a key ingredient in this recipe! You can order it, as well as the Good Dee’s Dark Chocolate Chips, either on Amazon or on the Good Dee’s website. Consider adding some of the delicious Good Dee’s keto cookie mix flavors I’ve reviewed previously to your cart while you’re at it. After all, what’s better than cookies and hot cocoa on a chilly day, especially around the holidays?

    Note: If you don't get Amazon Prime free shipping, or the Good Dee's products you want are out of stock on Amazon, or you'd prefer to shop the full selection of Good Dee's products, you can save 15% off your total purchase price any time you use my Good Dee's website affiliate shopping link and enter my unique discount coupon code GOODDEES15MRS during checkout. 
  • Using Ghirardelli Majestic Premium Cocoa makes a big difference in the taste of this decadent hot chocolate. The more expensive nib-alkalization process gives it a richer, smoother, better flavor. Even though the generous 2-pound (32-ounce) canister looks as though it would be a lifetime supply, I use this extraordinary cocoa powder so often in this and other recipes, such as my luscious low carb keto chocolate yogurt chip pudding parfait recipe (my favorite quick and easy breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, or snack when I’m in the mood for something sweet), that I have to replenish my supply a few times a year.

    If you are unable to get the Ghirardelli Majestic Premium and need to substitute a different brand or formula, please make sure to choose a high-quality, unsweetened, alkalized or Dutch-processed cocoa powder. Although your hot chocolate won't taste the same as my original recipe, if you use a different brand of alkalized or Dutch-processed (aka Dutched or "Dutch"), it should still be delicious!

  • Making this hot beverage in a large, flat-bottomed Pyrex glass 4-cup measuring cup lets you can see what's at the bottom of the hot mixture, so you know whether the chocolate chips have melted completely and, if so, whether all the melted chocolate has been incorporated into the hot macadamia milk and melted butter mixture. 

  • Using an immersion blender on medium speed creates the perfect consistency. If you don't own one, you can use a regular blender, and use a slim silicone scraper to make sure you get all of your delicious hot beverage out of the container. My decades-old stick blender was a gift from someone who knew how much I enjoy cooking and baking, and that model was discontinued long ago. However, if you're looking for a good one, the powerful Müeller Austria Ultra-Stick 500 Watt 9-Speed Stainless Steel Immersion Blender has more than 20,000 5-star ratings on Amazon.

Nutrition Facts

I entered this recipe and its variations into Carb Manager to help me calculate and track the calories, macros, and other nutrition data, based on the specific ingredients and brands I used. I usually drink one-quarter of the recipe, while my husband prefers to indulge in a larger portion. So, here are the nutrition facts for both the smaller, typical serving size (6 fluid ounces) and a double-size serving (12 fluid ounces).

The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe (Original, Mint, or Peppermint) Nutrition Facts

One quarter of this recipe (6 fluid ounce serving) contains 1 net carb, 136 calories, 4.7 grams of dietary fiber, 2.8 grams of protein, and 13 grams of fat. 

Half the recipe (12 fluid ounce serving) contains 2 net carbs, 272 calories, 9.4 grams of dietary fiber, 5.7 grams of protein, and 26.1 grams of fat. 

The Ultimate Keto Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Recipe Nutrition Facts

One quarter of this recipe (6 fluid ounce serving) contains 1 net carb, 136 calories, 4.7 grams of dietary fiber, 2.8 grams of protein, and 13 grams of fat. 

Half the recipe (12 fluid ounce serving) contains 2 net carbs, 272 calories, 9.4 grams of dietary fiber, 5.7 grams of protein, and 26.1 grams of fat. 

The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe by Margaret Schindel


Posts In This Series About My Keto Diet Journey

The Best Low Carb Keto Gift Ideas: Keto Holiday Gift Guide 2020

The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe

Keto Cheddar Cheese Biscuits With Chives Recipe

My Favorite Hamama Microgreens Seed Quilt Accessories

Hamama Microgreens Growing Kit Review & Success Tips

Good Dee’s Keto Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix Review

Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding Recipe

Low Carb Muffins & Cupcakes: Treats to Enjoy on a Keto Diet

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part Two

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One

My First Year on The Keto Diet


Reviews of the Keto Diet by Barbara C. (aka Brite-Ideas)

My Personal Keto Testimonial

How I Stayed Committed to the Ketogenic Way of Eating



Read More Reviews About Health and Wellness by Our Review This Reviews Contributors





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Keto Cheddar Cheese Biscuits Recipe With Chives


Today, I'm pleased to share my review of my quick and easy low carb cheddar cheese and chive biscuits recipe, whose not-so-secret ingredient is HighKey Keto Buttermilk Biscuit Mix.

I've enjoyed putting my own spin on my baked goods ever since I was a kid, whether I'm making them from scratch or using a high quality packaged mix as a shortcut. So, when HighKey Snacks, one of my favorite keto food brands, came out with a delicious keto-friendly buttermilk biscuit baking mix, I couldn’t wait to start playing around with my own ingredient add-ins. One of my favorite variations so far is this quick and easy, 5-ingredient recipe for keto cheddar cheese buttermilk biscuits with chives. They're so buttery and delicious, everyone in your family will ask for more, and they'll never guess these treats are keto-friendly. This is now one of my go-to low carb recipes, and I usually bake a dozen every two or three weeks, depending on whether my omnivorous husband is in the mood for some. 

Main image - photo collage with text "Keto & Low Carb Cheddar-Chive Buttermilk Biscuits"
Tender, flavorful, cheddar cheese keto biscuits with chives, ready in 30 minutes or less

Enjoy Big, Buttery Drop Biscuits, Even on a Keto or Low Carb Diet

I have tried—and loved—every baking mix in HighKey’s keto-friendly, low carb product line. So, I was really excited when the company announced it was coming out with a new keto buttermilk biscuit mix. I was confident that it, too, would be a winner, and I wasn’t disappointed! 

Since making a traditional flaky biscuit requires using wheat flour or other another grain, the texture of those made with HighKey’s buttermilk biscuit baking mix makes them more similar to traditional drop biscuits. Just add eggs, They’re extremely versatile and taste great, whether you eat them plain, toasted and buttered, or in sweet or savory dishes, from keto strawberry shortcake (with fresh berries and whipped cream) to sweet or savory low carb sandwiches.

Even though this biscuit mix has great buttermilk flavor, I was surprised to learn that it contains no buttermilk. In fact, it’s dairy free and soy free, and has no added sugar or artificial ingredients, so it’s a great option for people with those dietary restrictions, regardless of whether they’re following a ketogenic or low carb diet.

Photo of two baking pans of freshly baked keto cheddar-chive biscuits
Tender, low carb, keto-friendly cheddar cheese biscuits with chives, just out of the oven

My Quick and Easy Keto Cheddar Cheese and Chive Biscuits Variation

Using HighKey Buttermilk Biscuit Baking Mix

Variety is the spice of life, especially when your food choices aren’t free of limitations. Both my husband and I are huge fans of cheddar cheese bread. These days, however, the yummy, carbohydrate-laden cheese bread we used to buy from our local bakery is now off-limits (for me, at least). My husband also loves chives. So, one of the first ideas I had for varying the original HighKey buttermilk biscuit mix recipe was to add sharp cheddar cheese and chives. 

I had to experiment with the proportions bit to get the prominent cheddar flavor I was looking for. Increasing the amount of cheese also made the biscuits somewhat less crumbly, which means I can also use them as hamburger buns. And, while I love having a slice of hot, gooey, melted cheese on my burgers, using these cheddar-chive keto biscuits as a bun gives me that great cheeseburger flavor even if I don’t add any additional cheese. 

I usually prefer to use fresh chives in my dishes. For this recipe, however, I decided to go with freeze-dried chives, since I would need only a small quantity, and I no longer eat mashed potatoes (which I always make with plenty of fresh chives) now that I follow a ketogenic diet. Fortunately, freeze-dried chives work fine for these cheddar cheese biscuits.

One of My Favorite Keto Bread Options

With or without chives, these cheddar cheese biscuits are not only delicious but also versatile. Even though they are moist, rich, and yummy just as is, I also I love using them to add extra flavor to a sandwich or burger, as a filling side dish to turn a soup or salad into a satisfying, high-protein, low carb meal, or just sliced, toasted, and buttered for breakfast (or a hearty snack).  

Just be aware that you may want your burger with a knife and fork if you serve it in one of these tender biscuits.

Photo of hamburger on a biscuit, served on a plate
Last night's dinner: this juicy burger on a keto cheddar-chive biscuit,
served with a big, colorful, pretty and nutritious salad

Low Carb Keto Cheddar Cheese and Chive Buttermilk Biscuits Recipe 

These quick and easy keto biscuits are sure to become one of your favorite low carb recipes.

Photo of keto cheddar-chive biscuit on a small plate
Prep Time:

15 minutes

Cook Time:

15 minutes

Total Time:

30 minutes

Recipe Yield:

12 large biscuits

Calories:

257 kcal


Ingredients


Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 ℉. Line one or two baking sheets with parchment paper. 
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the baking mix, shredded cheese, and chives.
  3. Stir in the chilled butter cubes, then cut in the butter with a pastry blender until it resembles coarse crumbs. 
  4. Stir in the eggs to form a soft, sticky dough.
  5. Scoop the dough onto the parchment-lined baking sheet(s) in 12 equal mounds, spacing them well apart to allow for spreading.
  6. Bake for 14–15 minutes, until the tops and edges of the biscuits are a light golden brown.
  7. Let them cool for a minute or two, then remove them to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Screenshot of recipe nutrition information in Carb Manager app on iPhone screen
Nutrition Facts

If you're on a keto diet and counting your macros, here's what the Carb Manager app calculated. Although it's based on the specific brand of extra-sharp aged cheddar cheese (and eggs and butter) I used, the calories and macros should be very similar, regardless of the brands of ingredients you use.

These big, delicious cheese biscuits are extremely filling. Each contains 2.6 net carbs, 257 calories, and just over 23 grams of fat, 9 grams of protein, and 6 grams of dietary fiber. 


Helpful Baking Tips for Making Keto Cheddar and Chive Buttermilk Biscuits


Make the Entire Package of HighKey Buttermilk Biscuit Mix at a Time (and Freeze What You Don't Need For Later)

The first time I prepared a bag of HighKey Buttermilk Biscuit Mix, I measured out 1-1/3 cups of the dry mix and combined it with 1/4 cup of butter and two eggs to make 6 biscuits as directed on the package. Unfortunately, when I started making my next batch, I discovered that there was only about a cup of leftover dry mix in the package! Subsequently, I have seen comments on Facebook and Amazon from people who had the same experience after following the package directions. Now, I always make a dozen buttermilk biscuits at a time, using the entire bag of mix. Fortunately, like most baked goods, these biscuits freeze beautifully, and thaw quickly at room temperature.

Use a Pastry Blender to Cut in the Butter

When I was a girl, my grandmother taught me to cut fat into dry ingredients by scissoring it into the flour mixture with two sharp knives. That experience definitely has made me appreciate the ease and efficiency of using a pastry blender instead. In addition, this handy tool, also called a pastry cutter or dough blender, creates more uniform bits of butter for more even distribution throughout the dough. It's also possible to use a fork, but that tends to mash the butter into the flour, rather than chopping it into nice little individual flour-coated bits. So, although the HighKey Buttermilk Biscuit Mix package directions give you the choice of using a pastry cutter or a fork, I strongly recommend using the former.
Spring Chef Dough Blender on Amazon

I recently replaced my dull, 40-year-old pastry blender with a Spring Chef Dough Blender, and it turned out to be a major upgrade! It has sturdier and much sharper stainless steel blades, as well as a wide, comfortable, soft-grip handle. Both these features make it a pleasure to use, especially since this high quality, heavy-duty cutter doesn't feel heavy in my hand. In addition to cutting butter or other fat into dry ingredients, I also love using it for other cooking and baking tasks that my previous pastry blender would not have been up to, such as chopping nuts and making salsa and guacamole.

Use a #14 Scoop to Portion the Dough Evenly

Dividing any dough or batter evenly into equal-size portions is always desirable, since it enables all the biscuits, cookies, etc., to finish baking at the same time with the same degree of doneness. If you are baking for yourself or others who are monitoring their food intake, whether tracking macros on a low carb or keto diet or counting calories, protein, fat, carbohydrates, fiber, cholesterol, sodium, potassium, or other nutrients for a medical, health, or weight loss reason, portioning equal servings of a recipe becomes even more important. Over time, I have assembled a collection of high quality Norpro stainless steel scoops in several different sizes, the largest of which is the 4-tablespoon (#16) Norpro scoop with a comfortable, soft-grip handle, none had the right capacity to measure out 1/12 portions of this keto buttermilk biscuit dough, with or without added cheese. Guesstimating how much to overfill  the #16 size always left me with too much or two little dough for the last few portions, and I was spending more time weighing each mound and shuffling around bits of dough to equalize the portion sizes than I did preparing it in the first place.

Eventually, I managed to find a #14 stainless steel scoop with a capacity of 4-3/4 tablespoons, which turned out to be the perfect size for portioning this keto biscuit dough into twelfths. It's a huge time-saver, makes nice, rounded mounds, and has a sturdy spring-action mechanism for the scraper blade.

Don't Skip the Baking Parchment Paper

These drop biscuits will likely stick, and stick badly, to the baking pan if you try to grease it instead of using baking parchment. I prefer using unbleached, precut sheets of parchment paper, which are less toxic than bleached baking parchment and don't curl like paper sold in rolls. If you are trying to cut down on single-use disposable products, a reusable silicone nonstick baking mat is a great alternative.

Consider Making Them With Extra-Sharp Cheddar 

The first time I made these, I used regular sharp cheddar, and only half an ounce. (I also left out the chives.) They tasted good, but weren't as cheesy or tangy as I had hoped. So, for the next batch, I not only doubled the amount of cheese, and used aged, extra-sharp cheddar. It made a huge difference! So, if you enjoy the taste of extra-sharp cheddar, I encourage you to try using it in these biscuits.

My Favorite Brands of High Quality, Low Carb and Keto Baking Mix Products

One of the keys to my successful keto diet journey, which helped me lose nearly 60 pounds and, more importantly, has enabled me to maintain that weight loss, has been finding keto-friendly versions of my favorite baked goods. Although I’ve always loved to bake (and still do), I also wanted to spend less time thinking about food, which meant spending less time cooking and baking, especially during the first six months of my new, healthy eating lifestyle after switching to a ketogenic diet. So, while I absolutely love using the recipes in Carolyn Ketchum’s The Ultimate Guide to Keto Baking (my keto baking bible) and my go-to low carb and keto blogs and websites, more often than not I’ve been using the excellent baking mixes from HighKey Snacks, Good Dee’s, and Keto and Co, which not only taste great but are also made with wholesome (and, for the most part, minimally processed) ingredients. You can learn more about these brands’ high-quality baking mixes in my review of homemade low carb keto cupcakes and muffins.


More Reviews of Low Carb and Keto Baking Mixes and Recipes


Keto Cheddar Cheese Buttermilk Biscuits Recipe With Chives by Margaret Schindel







Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Good Dee’s Keto Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix Review

If you have been following my ongoing series of posts here about my successful keto diet weight loss journey, you’ll know that I love baked goods and desserts. You’ll also know that finding ways to indulge in keto desserts has helped me maintain a fairly strict ketogenic diet approach to eating since May 2019, a very low carb, healthy lifestyle that I continue to follow now that I have achieved and surpassed my original weight loss goals. 

I also enjoy baking, but I don’t always have time to do low carb baking from scratch. That’s why I keep a selection of high quality keto baking mixes in my pantry, so, I can enjoy fresh-baked sweet treats in just minutes. In a recent post, I shared my favorite low carb baking mix brands and keto recipes for low carb keto muffins. In this post, I'll share the excellent Good Dee's Cookie Mix low carb baking mix line.

Introductory image photo collage of Good Dee's low carb keto cookie baking mix flavors
Bake fresh keto cookies in just minutes 
with Good Dee's low carb cookie baking mix

Good Dee's Low Carb Cookie Mix

Fresh Baked Keto Cookies in Minutes!

All Good Dee's Low Carb Cookie Baking Mix flavors are sugar free, gluten free, grain free, and wheat-free. Some (but not all) are also manufactured in a dedicated gluten free facility. Anyone who either has a food allergy or bakes cookies for someone who does will appreciate the allergy information on the packaging and the brand owner's efforts to accommodate multiple common food allergies.

A Changing Flavor Selection

Good Dee's continues to expand their low carb baking mix line for keto cookies and other products. Not every flavor is available year round, and some are considered seasonal. I recommend checking on both Amazon (free shipping for Amazon Prime members) and the Good Dee's website (free shipping for orders over $50) to see which flavors are currently in production and in stock. Occasionally, these products also go on sale, another reason to keep an eye out on both websites, and also to sign up for the Good Dee's mailing list for exclusive offers.

Last week, I used the three Good Dee's low carb baking mix flavors I had on hand to bake the three dozen cookies I photographed for this post. I've also tried a fourth flavor (double chocolate chip) that I didn't have in my pantry at the time. Today, I'll share my product reviews of the four low carb baking mix flavors that I've purchased and made into keto cookies.

Good Dee's Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix

Side by side photos of Good Dee's Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix and baked cookies
These thick, soft, chewy chocolate chip cookies 
are also low carb and keto diet friendly treats

It's not surprising that the first keto cookie mix Good Dee's introduced was chocolate chip. After all, chocolate chip cookies are the most popular cookie in the United States, and the second most popular cookie in the world, after French macarons. 

I tried Good Dee's Chocolate Chip Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix for the first time shortly after I discovered it on Amazon and, truthfully, I was a bit underwhelmed. Fortunately, the "new & improved recipe" lived up to its promise, and the second batch I made, using the mix with the new recipe, was much better. Like all the Good Dee's cookie mixes I've tried to date, the improved chocolate chip version produced cookies that were large, thick, soft and chewy. That's how I prefer my "chippers," but if you like thin, crisp cookies, you probably won't be a fan of the Good Dee's mixes. 

As you can see, they certainly weren't the best-looking chocolate chip cookies I've ever baked. Both times I've made them, the batter underneath the chocolate chips seemed to pull away from them, resulting in small, chocolate-filled craters after baking. However, I don't care that much about how pretty they are, since they meet my much more important criteria for being tasty, satisfying, and keto-friendly.

The other thing to know about this mix is that the chips are very dark chocolate and not very sweet. I rather like the contrast of the barely sweet chocolate chips and somewhat sweeter cookie dough. 

Good Dee's Sugar Cookie Mix

Side by side photos of Good Dee's Sugar Free Cookie Baking Mix and plate of cookies
A different texture than traditional
sugar cookies, but a similar taste


Like all this brand's products, Good Dee's Sugar Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix is actually sugar free. Although the texture is coarser and chewier than conventional sugar cookies, the taste is surprisingly similar. 

These also make a great base for adding your own flavor mix-ins. I'm thinking of adding some tiny wild Maine blueberries and chopped walnuts or pecans to my next batch. Yum! 

Good Dee's Butter Pecan Cookie Mix

Side by side photos of Good Dee's Butter Pecan Low Carb Cookie Baking Mix and baked butter pecan cookies
If I had to pick my favorite, it would have to be this
awesome Good Dee's butter pecan cookie baking mix

Of the four keto cookie mix flavors I've tried so far, the Good Dee's Butter Pecan Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix has definitely turned out to be my favorite. To me, they have an awesome flavor and a less coarse texture than the other flavors, making these extremely similar to old-fashioned butter pecan cookies made with white flour and cane sugar. 

My husband, who eats conventional cookies or cake daily for dessert, likes these low carb butter pecan cookies a lot, too—the ultimate compliment for keto baked goods!

Good Dee's Double Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix

If you're a chocolate lover, Good Dee's Double Chocolate Chip Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix would be a good flavor to try. These are rich, not-too-sweet, dark chocolate cookies studded with dark chocolate chips. Since there are no golden brown edges to tell you when these are done, I suggest keeping a close eye on them and pulling them out of the oven as soon as the edges appear set.

Other Good Dee's Low Carb Cookie Mix Flavors

I haven't had a chance to try the Good Dee's Snickerdoodle Cookie Mix or Peanut Butter Cookie Mix yet. But since I love both those types, I'm definitely looking forward to picking up a bag of each.

About Good Dee's Low Carb Baking Products

The Dee behind Good Dee's is owner and founder Deana Karim, who finally succeeded in losing weight and adopting a healthy lifestyle after embracing a LCHF (low carb, high fat) approach to eating. She knew that thinking of this way of eating as a diet (and, by implication, temporary), and feeling deprived because she could no longer enjoy cookies and other baked goods, would be a "recipe" for failure. At the time, there weren't any baked goods that met her requirements for being healthy, low carb, and delicious — so she started developing her own low carb keto recipes for brownies, cookies, muffins, and cakes. 

Understanding that there were many other people following a low carb diet who, like her, had an unmet need for easy-to-make, healthy, and delicious sugar free baked goods, Deana invested her $5,000 savings into launching her Good Dee's low carb baking mix business. A month later, her low carb, gluten free, sugar free chocolate brownie mix was the number one brownie mix (not just low carb) on Amazon! 

She continues to expand her line, and has listened to customer feedback to improve several of her baking mixes. She now offers Good Dee's allulose-sweetened sugar free chocolate chips (currently out of stock on Amazon, so check back to see whether it's available), sugar free just add water frosting mix in cream cheese, dark chocolate, and white chocolate flavors, and even sugar free rainbow sprinkles and naturally colored sugar free edible glitter for decorating cookies, cakes, cupcakes, and ice cream sundaes. 

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Tips for Baking With Good Dee's Keto Cookie Mixes

All low carb baking mixes behave differently than their traditional flour- and sugar-laden counterparts. Here are my tips for baking successful keto cookies from a Good Dee's low carb baking mix.

Line Your Cookie Sheets With Baking Parchment

Even if you have a Silpat or other nonstick baking pan liner underneath, I recommend lining your baking sheets with baking parchment, as directed when using these low carb baking mixes. The cookies are extremely fragile when they come out of the oven, and the parchment paper helps them release without breaking. I have switched to using unbleached baking parchment exclusively, and my high quality Fasmov Non-Stick Parchment Paper Baking Liner Sheets are shipped flat, so the edges of the paper don't curl (which I love!). 

Prepare and Measure the Wet Ingredients

Photo: Bag of Good Dee's chocolate chip cookie mix next to beaten egg, melted butter, and vanilla extract
Setting out and measuring all the ingredients, the mixing bowl,
and a mixing spoon keeps your work space organized

As with any type of baking, ingredients should be at room temperature unless otherwise specified (for example, using chilled fat in pastry dough or biscuits). 
  • To bring the egg to room temperature, you can either set it out on the counter or, if you want to start baking sooner, gently place the whole egg (still in its shell) into a bowl of warm (not hot) water and leave it for 5–10 minutes. 
  • Either butter (preferably unsalted) or coconut oil will work for any of the Good Dee's cookie mixes. I prefer the taste of unsalted butter for most keto baking. When I've been low on butter or baking dairy free cookies to accommodate another person's dietary requirements, however, I've substituted my favorite unrefined, cold-pressed, organic virgin coconut oil, which adds a very subtle hint of coconut flavor that I quite enjoy. If you prefer a more neutral flavor (or just don't like the taste of coconut), you can use refined coconut oil, but it doesn't offer the health benefits that unrefined, cold-pressed, organic virgin coconut oil does.
  • I find it easiest to melt the butter or coconut oil in a Pyrex measuring cup, covered with wax paper, microwaving it in 15-20 second bursts, and stopping when most, but not all, of the fat has melted. After removing it from the microwave, I gently swirl it in the glass measuring cup, letting the hot melted fat finish melting the remaining solids. If you prefer, you can melt it over simmering water in a double boiler. Set the melted butter or coconut oil aside to cool while you preheat the oven and prepare the cookie dough.
  • In any baking recipe, I always recommend using the best quality, pure vanilla you can find (and afford). Penzeys pure vanilla extract is my favorite.

Stir Dry Mix Before Adding Wet Ingredients

Photo of cookie baking mix in bowl, next to the wet ingredients on countertop
Getting ready to add the egg, butter, and vanilla extract
after stirring the dry cookie mix in a mixing bowl

The directions for all Good Dee's cookie mixes call for pouring the baking mix into a bowl and stirring with a spoon before adding the wet ingredients. I'm guessing the reason is that nut and seed flours are heavier than wheat flour, so they may tend to separate out and settle to the bottom during shipping. If that's the case, they might need to be stirred back into the rest of the mix to redistribute them evenly. 

After stirring the dry mix in the bowl, add the egg, melted butter or coconut oil, and vanilla extract, then mix thoroughly.

Use a Cookie Scoop to Portion the Dough Evenly

Image of 12 scoops of Good Dee's low carb chocolate chip cookie dough on baking parchment lined cookie sheets
I used a medium cookie scoop to divide the prepared
keto chocolate chip cookie mix into 12 equal portions

Dividing dough into 12 equal portions with any accuracy can be a pain. I could weigh the prepared dough in grams, divide the total weight by 12, and then weigh out each portion of the dough. But if I'm using a baking mix, I'm not interested in spending that amount of time and effort just to portion out the dough equally. 

Since I still track my daily keto macros and calories, ensuring that dough is divided as evenly as possible is important to me. Most of the mixes call for dropping 1½ to 2 tablespoon portions of dough onto the parchment paper-lined cookie sheet to make 12 cookies. However, the butter pecan cookie mix package says to use 1 tablespoon of dough for each cookie to make "approximately" 12 cookies, yet when I did that, I had used up only slightly more than half the dough. By trial and error, I found that 1/12 of my prepared butter pecan cookie dough measured out to slightly less than 2 tablespoons per cookie.

So, if you track your daily keto macros and calories (for example, on the Carb Manager app), I recommend using a 1.5 to 2 tablespoon stainless steel scoop with a trigger mechanism to help release the sticky dough, such as the Solula Professional 18/8 Stainless Steel Medium Cookie Scoop #40 (with a 1.7 tablespoon capacity) to help you measure out 12 equal portions of cookie dough. You'll quickly find out, through trial and error, whether you need to use a level scoop, a scant scoop, or a slightly rounded scoop of dough for each cookie.

Don't Overbake

I've noticed that keto cookies I've made using a Good Dee's Low Carb Baking Mix tend to progress from underbaked to overbaked fairly quickly. Since every oven is different, I recommend setting your timer for one minute less than the package directions' shortest baking time and then keeping a close eye on the cookies so you can pull them out as soon as the edges turn golden (or, in the case of the double chocolate chip cookies, until the edges have just set). 

Let Baked Cookies Cool Completely Before Removing From the Baking Parchment

These keto cookies have a much softer, somewhat coarser, and chewier texture than conventional cookies made with flour and sugar, and they are also more fragile, even after they have cooled. If you try to lift them off the baking parchment before they have fully cooled, they are likely to fall apart. So, don't let the scent of freshly baked cookies tempt you to try to eat one, or even move them to a serving plate, while they're still warm.

In fact, I find that both the flavor and texture of these low carb baked goods are even better after a day or two!

Consider Freezing Some (or Most)

If you think it might be hard to resist eating more of these cookies than will fit within your daily calories and keto macros, or if you don't plan to eat one every day and want to enjoy them as a sweet treat from time to time, you may want to freeze some or most of them, after snugly wrapping them individually in plastic freezer wrap and then placing them inside an airtight freezer-safe food storage container (or, if necessary, inside a heavy, zippered freezer food storage bag). 

Wrapping each cookie securely in plastic freezer wrap not only provides another layer of protection against freezer burn, it also makes it easy to remove just one or two cookies, which will thaw fairly quickly after being unwrapped.

Keto Cookies vs. Conventional Cookies

Photo: small plate of three different types of low carb cookies
Gluten-free, sugar-free, grain-free, butter pecan,
chocolate chip, and sugar cookie keto cookies,
made with Good Dee's low carb baking mix

Unless you're just starting a keto diet, you've probably discovered that ketogenic cookies, cakes, pies, etc., have a different texture and, often, a somewhat different taste than conventional baked goods made with high carbohydrate ingredients that can spike your blood sugar levels and cause inflammation. So, it's important to have realistic expectations of any keto baking recipes or low carb baking mixes. 

That said, I found that my taste buds gradually adapted after several months on a fairly strict ketogenic diet, and since I no longer eat conventional sweet treats, my palate no longer compares very low carb desserts to traditional baked goods. My experience is pretty typical of people who stick to a fairly strict keto diet for at least 8–12 weeks. 

So, while these cookies don't taste like my grandmother's cookies (or mine, prior to last May), they make yummy, satisfying keto desserts for those of us following a very low carb lifestyle.

Why Use a Keto Baking Mix Instead of a Low Carb Recipe? 

Ease of Use, Time Savings, and Convenience


Baking is based on chemical reactions between ingredients. And the chemistry that makes conventional baking recipes work involves interactions between ingredients that aren't keto friendly. Even for those of us who have decades of experience as excellent home bakers, there's a significant learning curve in converting old, beloved family recipes for low carb baking. That's a challenge I haven't had an interest in tackling (at least, not yet!), so I prefer to let low carb baking experts do the work of developing delicious, foolproof recipes for keto cookies and other baked goods. 

Sugar free, gluten free keto baking also requires stocking the pantry with different ingredients than the ones we're accustomed to using. For example, instead of white and whole wheat flour and cornstarch, we might need to buy almond flour, coconut flour, sunflower seed flour, watermelon seed flour, and xanthan gum. (And it's not as though any of these ingredients can be simply substituted 1:1 in a keto baking recipe!) 

So, although I keep those and other low carb baking ingredients in my freezer and pantry, and enjoy making a number of keto baking recipes for rolls, buns, muffins, etc., when I have time and inclination, I also appreciate the convenience of having keto baking mix varieties on hand. I try to buy ones that contain the same high-quality, low carb ingredients I use in my scratch low carb baking, and that produce keto baked goods that taste as good as the ones I bake from scratch (or close enough).





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Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding Recipe

In my previous post in this series about my successful keto diet weight loss journey, I shared some of my favorite baking mixes and recipes for low carb keto muffins and cupcakes. I’ve decided to continue the theme of low carb, keto-friendly treats with my quick and easy, no-cook recipe for a scrumptious chocolate pudding that’s high in protein, dietary fiber, and calcium, and fairly low in net carbs.

Photo collage main image - Keto / Low Carb / Sugar Free Chocolate Yogurt Pudding with Granola and White Chocolate Chips
My no-cook keto chocolate yogurt pudding or parfait recipe
is luscious, healthy, and high in protein, fiber, and calcium

A Rich, Decadent Chocolate Yogurt Pudding That's Nutritious as Well as Delicious!

I've always enjoyed cooking for other people. But since our household consists of just my husband and me, and he doesn't follow a low carb diet, I'd rather spend time doing things other than cooking meals just for myself. Like most people who follow a ketogenic diet, I'm always looking for more quick and easy, tasty, healthy, low carb breakfasts and lunches to add variety to my meals. And, since I don't eat fish or seafood, and trying to get enough protein just from meat, poultry and eggs can get boring pretty quickly. 

When I was researching keto-friendly foods, I had discovered that many of the sources of protein I used to eat frequently, such as Gardein plant-based crispy "chicken" tenders, are too high in carbohydrates and/or contain wheat or other grains that aren't compatible with a ketogenic eating framework. 

One important exception was plain, full-fat yogurt, with no added sugar or artificial ingredients. (Reduced-fat yogurt tends to have more sugar and/or other ingredients added to make them thicker and creamier, to compensate for the reduced fat content.) After a bit more online research, the consensus seemed to be that Fage (pronounced "Fah-Yay") Total 5% Milkfat plain Greek yogurt had the least tangy taste, creamiest texture, and best nutritional profile in terms of keto macros (low carb, high protein, high fat). 

I bought a container and found it had a much milder taste and smoother, creamier mouthfeel than the low-fat and no-fat plain Greek yogurts I used to buy to use as a lower-calorie, lower-fat, higher-protein alternative to sour cream before I switched to keto. In fact, I was surprised to discover that, unlike the reduced-fat varieties or even plain full-fat Greek yogurt from other popular brands, the Fage Total 5% Milkfat Greek yogurt was good enough to eat straight from the container, if I wanted to toss some into a lunch bag for a quick, on-the-go snack or light meal and didn't have time to add anything to it. But, since I much prefer flavored to unflavored yogurt, I started experimenting with different low carb mix-ins to make it more interesting.

Luckily, one of my first experiments turned out to be my favorite (so far): mixing the full-fat, plain Greek yogurt with my favorite unsweetened cocoa powder (Ghirardelli Majestic Premium) and keto-friendly sweetener (Bocha Sweet), plus a touch of pink Himalayan salt and pure vanilla extract to enhance the flavor of the cocoa. 

The first time I made this cocoa-flavored yogurt dish, I couldn't believe how luscious it was. It tasted like a rich, creamy, delectable chocolate pudding. In fact, if I hadn't known that the main ingredient was Greek yogurt, I never would have guessed. 

In addition to the fabulous taste and texture, it was high in protein, fat, and calcium, and low in net carbs and calories—a low carb or keto dieter's dream!

Making This Indulgent, Low Carb Chocolate Pudding Recipe Even Yummier and Healthier

After a few months, it occurred to me that a crunchy topping might provide a nice contrast to the creamy consistency of this chocolate yogurt pudding. I decided to try sprinkling it with my favorite Livlo chocolate hazelnut keto granola, which did, indeed, make this heavenly sweet treat even better.

Delighted as I was with this new twist, however, I still hadn't quite finished tinkering with the recipe. For most of us who follow a ketogenic diet, one of the challenges is how to get enough dietary fiber from the food we eat while staying within our net carbs macro limit. So, I wanted to increase the dietary fiber in my chocolate yogurt pudding, preferably in a way that would further enhance its deliciousness.

I decided that topping it with some ChocZero sugar free white chocolate chips as well as the chocolate hazelnut granola not only would boost the fiber content significantly, but would also add another layer of texture and flavor.

One taste, and I was in heaven. I could just hear an announcer's voice in my head, preceded by three rings of the bell: (ding, ding, ding) "We have a winner, ladies and gentlemen!"

Sometimes, I layer one-third of the cocoa-flavored Greek yogurt, one-third of the chocolate hazelnut granola, and one-third of the sugar free white chocolate chips in a small drinking glass, then repeat those layers two more times for an elegant pudding parfait.  

A Nutrition Profile That Fits Easily Within My Daily Keto Macros

Even though this rich, creamy pudding/parfait tastes positively sinful, it's actually a nutritious, guilt-free indulgence. In fact, this healthy, filling, protein-rich dish makes a great breakfast, lunch, dessert, or snack!

Even after reaching my goal weight a few months ago, I still track everything I eat or drink in the Carb Manager app. So, before I prepare a new recipe—my own or someone else's—I always enter it into the app so it can calculate the keto macros and other nutrients I track, such as dietary fiber. According to Carb Manager's calculations, each serving of this sumptuous, low carb chocolate yogurt pudding or parfait contains just under 15 grams of fat, roughly 13 grams of high quality protein, 6.4 grams of dietary fiber (a little less than 25% of the FDA's daily value (DV), based on a 2,000-calorie diet), 5.5 grams of net carbs, and 236 calories, if it's made with the ingredient brands and amounts specified in the recipe. It also provides 137.1 mg of calcium, or 10% of the FDA's 1300 mg DV.

As you can see from this iPhone screenshot after I entered it into the app, Carb Manager gave this recipe a "Keto Grade: A" rating. 
Image: screenshot of keto macros for recipe on Carb Manager app
Carb Manager calculates the macros for this low carb keto pudding

Note: Substituting different brands or amounts of the ingredients for those specified in recipe will alter both the taste and the nutrition of this chocolate yogurt pudding.

Eating a bowl of rich, creamy, chocolate yogurt pudding topped with chocolate hazelnut granola and white chocolate chips for breakfast is an incredibly luxurious treat!


Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding or Parfait (No-Cook Recipe)

Prep Time:

5 minutes

Cook Time:

0 minutes

Makes:

1 serving


Ingredients


Directions

  1. Measure and set out all the ingredients. (I like to lay them out on a sheet of wax paper.)
Photo of Livlo keto granola, pink Himalayan salt, Bocha Sweet sugar replacement, Ghirardelli Majestic Premium cocoa powder, Penzeys vanilla extract, ChocZero sugar free white chocolate chips, and Fage Total 5% Milkfat plain Greek yogurt
Keto chocolate yogurt granola chip pudding/parfait
ingredients measured? Check!
  1. Add the Greek yogurt, cocoa powder, Bocha Sweet, pink Himalayan salt, and vanilla extract to a small bowl. 
Photo: bowl with chocolate yogurt pudding ingredients before mixing, with granola and white chocolate chips to be added later
Chocolate yogurt pudding ingredients, ready to stir together
before adding the granola and white chocolate chip toppings
  1. Stir well until the mixture is smooth and creamy, and the color is a uniform, medium cocoa brown.
  1. To serve as a pudding: Spoon the chocolate yogurt into a small serving dish. Sprinkle the top with the Livlo Granolō keto granola and ChocZero sugar free white chocolate chips.
image - bowl of prepared keto chocolate yogurt pudding topped with sugar free granola and white chocolate chips
My delicious, nutritious keto chocolate yogurt pudding recipe
is high in protein and fiber, and low in net carbs and calories
  1. To serve as a parfait: Spread 1/3 of the chocolate mixture into an even layer in the bottom of a clear juice glass (or similar small, narrow glass). Top with 1/3 of the granola and 1/3 of the white chocolate chips. Repeat these layers twice more. Garnish with an organic fresh raspberry or blueberry, if desired.

    Note: We don't own any juice glasses, so I had to make my pudding parfait in an 11-ounce Old Fashioned whiskey glass. If you layer the parfait components in a smaller, narrower, 5- to 6-ounce glass, the banding layers will be more distinct and result in a more attractive presentation.
Photo of prepared keto chocolate yogurt granola chip parfait recipe, served in a small glass
Layer the chocolate yogurt, granola, and
white chocolate chips in a small glass
to turn this pudding into a parfait

Optional Additional Toppings 

Organic Fresh Raspberries

I adore organic fresh raspberries, and I try to include them in my daily menus as often as possible. As you can see, I garnished the pudding and parfait in the recipe photographs with a ripe, red raspberry for a pop of bright color. And one of my favorite ways to enjoy my low carb keto chocolate yogurt granola white chocolate chip pudding is topped with 1/4 cup of fresh raspberries, which adds 0.2 grams of fat, 0.3 grams of protein, 1.8 grams of dietary fiber, 1.3 grams of net carbs, and just 13 calories.

Freshly Whipped Heavy Cream

Whether you're eating a bowl of freshly-picked berries or a slice of sugar-free, grain-free, low carb pie or cake, nearly everything sweet tastes better with a dollop of homemade, freshly whipped cream! Fortunately, heavy cream is very low in carbohydrates, so those of us who eat keto can enjoy a spoonful or two.

Look for organic heavy cream with the highest butterfat content you can find, preferably from pasture-raised, grass-fed cows that have never been given antibiotics or synthetic hormones. In the US, this usually means heavy cream, also called heavy whipping cream (aka HWC), which typically has a 36-38% butterfat content. If you can find it, double cream (48% butterfat), sometimes sold at gourmet food shops, is even better. (Avoid regular "whipping cream," which has a butterfat content of only around 30%.) Cream with a higher butterfat content whips more easily, usually has less lactose (natural milk sugar), and is extremely low in carbohydrates.

For the best results, make sure the cream is very cold, and chill a small mixing bowl by putting it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or in the freezer for 15 minutes. Pour the cold cream into the chilled bowl and stir in a little pure vanilla extract. If you wish, sweeten the vanilla cream lightly with a little powdered aka confectioner's style keto-friendly sweetener. My favorite by far is Bocha Sweet Powdered Sugar Replacement. Using an electric mixer with a metal whisk attachment, whip the flavored cream on medium-high speed until it forms soft, billowing, medium peaks.

The Ultimate Keto Chocolate Yogurt Pudding Parfait

For an ultra-decadent dessert, top your serving of chocolate yogurt granola white chocolate chip pudding or parfait with fresh raspberries and whipped cream, if it fits within your macros or you want a small splurge to celebrate your birthday, anniversary, Valentine's Day, or another special occasion.

How Much Is a Pinch, Dash, Tad, Smidgen, or Drop of a Recipe Ingredient?

Even though I'm an experienced home cook and baker, I learned only recently that "tad," "dash," "pinch," "smidgen," and "drop" weren't simply vague approximations for ingredient quantities used by lazy recipe writers or people like my Russian grandmother, who learned to cook and bake at the knee of her own mother and grandmother as they showed her how to make their family's traditional recipes. These delicious, old-world recipes, passed down through the generations from mother to daughter, were rarely, if ever, written down, and the ingredients were measured by eye or, in some cases, by the feel of the dough, rather than with measuring cups or spoons.

 For modern cooks and bakers, each of those old-fashioned recipe measurements has become associated with a specific fraction of a teaspoon. A tad is 1/4 teaspoon, a dash is 1/8 teaspoon, a pinch is 1/16 teaspoon, a smidgen is 1/32 teaspoon, and a drop is 1/64 teaspoon. (Who knew?)

Image of set of five mini measuring spoons
These mini measuring spoons take the guesswork
out of measuring small amounts of seasonings
Unfortunately, knowing that you need 1/32 teaspoon of salt isn't much help if your smallest measuring spoon is 1/4 of a teaspoon (or even 1/8 teaspoon, depending on the set you have). I've run into this problem when often I've tried to cut down a recipe to make only half, a third, or a quarter of the original amount. 

Is it a big deal? It depends on what you're making. 

Guesstimating very small quantities of salt, pepper, herbs or spices may be fine if you're making a stew, for example, since you can easily adjust the seasoning to taste. But if you're baking, which is based on creating and controlling chemical reactions to product the desired result, measuring small amounts ingredients like baking powder, baking soda, yeast, and salt precisely can be essential to ensure a successful outcome. 

So, when I found a well designed, well made set of mini measuring spoons to complement (and supplement) my conventional-size measuring spoon sets, I didn't hesitate to order it. 

I looked at several different sets of mini measuring spoons before ultimately choosing the New Star Foodservice 42924 Stainless Steel Mini Measuring Spoons Set, for several reasons:

  • It has more than 6,000 5-star ratings and glowing reviews on Amazon.
  • The handles are stamped with measurements in both words and fractions of a teaspoon, and these permanent markings are large and easy to read, even for my aging eyes. 
    • Most of the other mini measuring spoon sets I found were marked with word measurements (tad, dash, pinch, smidgen, drop) only.
  • The spoons have oval bowls that fit easily into even the narrowest herb and spice container openings.
  • These sturdy stainless steel mini measuring spoons are dishwasher safe.
I've been using them for several months and couldn't be happier with my choice.

The Right Ingredients Make a Big Difference 

This quick and easy, low carb chocolate yogurt pudding recipe consists simply of plain Greek yogurt, stirred together with unsweetened cocoa, sweetener, salt, and vanilla extract, and then sprinkled with keto granola and sugar free white chocolate chips. And, because none of these components is transformed through cooking or baking, the flavor of each ingredient really comes through.

Of course, you certainly can use alternatives to the brands and products I recommend for this recipe, if you wish. However, they may not be as keto-friendly, and may have a negative affect on the pudding's taste, nutrition, or both. If you do choose to make any ingredient substitutions or other changes, I highly recommend that you use Carb Manager or a similar app to calculate the recipe's nutrition based on your changes, so you can track your macros and other nutrients accurately.

Full-Fat, Plain Greek Yogurt

Fage Total 5% Milkfat Plain Greek Yogurt has a mild flavor, a smooth, rich, creamy texture, and fewer carbs than most other full-fat Greek yogurt brands. The 1/2 cup of Fage Total 5% Milkfat Plain Greek Yogurt used in this recipe has only 3.5 grams of net carbs, 0 grams of fiber, 5.5 grams of fat, 10 grams of protein, and 105 calories.

Pink Himalayan Salt

Pink Himalayan salt is mined from massive salt beds that formed in a region of Pakistan where large seas dried up during the Jurassic era, more than 250,000,000 years ago. Through the ages, the salt flats became embedded deep in what is now the Himalayan Mountains, where over time, local weather events, erosion, and water leached minerals into the buried salt, giving this highly prized salt its characteristic taste and pink color. 

I've been enjoying The Spice Lab's Fine Pink Himalayan Salt, which has a deeper pink color than many of its competitors, indicating its superior quality and high mineral content. It's also available in finer and coarser grinds.

Unsweetened Cocoa Powder

As a chocolate lover and avid baker, I've tried many brands of high-quality unsweetened cocoa powder over the years, and keep both natural (non-alkalized) and Dutch-processed (alkalized) varieties on hand for different uses. A couple of years ago, I tried a canister of Ghirardelli Majestic Premium Cocoa Powder and was instantly wowed! This high-quality, nib-alkalized unsweetened cocoa powder imparts a deep, rich flavor unlike any other unsweetened cocoa powder I've used, including those from much more expensive brands, including high-end chocolatiers such as Valrhona. 

The biggest surprise was discovering how versatile it is! I love using it for baking, in recipes that call for Dutch-processed rather than natural cocoa powder. It dissolves well in hot almond, cashew, or macadamia milk to make low-carb hot cocoa. And in a recipe like this one, where it isn't being heated, it mixes into the Greek yogurt beautifully and tastes amazing!

Keto-Friendly, Plant-Derived Sweetener

Since May 2019, when I started my weight loss journey and committed to a very low carb lifestyle, I've purchased nearly every type of keto-friendly sweetener or sweetener blend on the market. Allulose is excellent, but Bocha Sweet Sugar Replacement is far-and-away my favorite. Bocha Sweet sugar replacement is a zero-calorie, zero-glycemic sweetener derived from organically grown, non-GMO kabocha, a Japanese variety of winter squash similar to pumpkin. Unlike most keto-friendly sweeteners, it tastes almost exactly like cane sugar and can replace it spoon-for-spoon and cup-for-cup when baking, cooking, or sweetening beverages such as coffee, tea, or cocoa. Like most high-quality, keto-friendly counterparts to inexpensive, nutrient-poor, highly processed ingredients, Bocha Sweet costs significantly more than white table sugar. But since even my husband, who loves addictive, high carb, nutritionally bankrupt sweet treats, agrees that the way it looks, acts, and tastes is virtually identical to regular cane sugar with none of the drawbacks, the higher price is well worth it to us.

Pure Vanilla Extract

I'm definitely a purist when it comes to vanilla extract, and have always try to buy the best I can afford. When the price of vanilla started to skyrocket a few years ago, I stocked up several large bottles of Penzeys delicious pure double strength vanilla extract. Unfortunately, the Penzeys vanilla extract contains a little added sugar, and since I'm now trying to minimize foods with added sugar in my diet, when I eventually finish going through my current "inventory," I'll probably be replacing it with another high-quality pure vanilla extract that has no sugar added, such as Nielsen-Massey No Sugar Added Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract or Rodelle Gourmet Pure Vanilla Extract.

Low Carb Granola

I've purchased several different brands and flavors of low-carb granola over the past few months. So far, my favorites are Livlo Granolō Chocolate Hazelnut Keto Granola and Livlo Granolō Cinnamon Almond Pecan Keto Granola. Either flavor, or a 50/50 mix of both, is wonderful in this chocolate Greek yogurt pudding or parfait recipe. I also like putting one to two tablespoons in a small custard cup or saucer and nibbling them very slowly, which makes a sweet, satisfying, high-protein snack. And a small topped with nut milk or heavy cream stays crunchy as you eat it. 

Keto-Friendly White Chocolate Chips

I love ChocZero No Sugar Added White Chocolate Baking Chips, which not only taste great but also are high in fiber, so I use them often in many different ways. Unfortunately, the demand for these creamy white chocolate chips is so high that they're often out of stock. I've learned to order multiple bags at a time and keep some in the freezer so I don't run out.

Lily's Stevia Sweetened White Chocolate Baking Chips, while not as tasty in my opinion, can be used instead in this recipe if you can't get hold of the ChocZero white chocolate chips.

If You Could Have Any Greek Yogurt Pudding or Parfait, Which Flavor(s) Would You Choose? 

I hope this post has helped to spark your imagination and interest you in experimenting with other ingredients and your own flavor combinations for transforming plain-Jane, full-fat Greek Yogurt into a tasty, low carb, high protein, sweet or savory pudding, dip, topping or spread. If so, please come back and share your favorite discoveries in the comments.

Also, if I've inspired you to try making my recipe for this healthy, nutritious and sinfully delicious Keto Chocolate Yogurt Pudding Parfait topped with chocolate hazelnut granola and white chocolate chips, I'd love to know what you think, and whether you love it as much as I do. 


Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding or Parfait Recipe by Margaret Schindel


Posts In This Series About My Keto Diet Journey

My Favorite Hamama Microgreens Seed Quilt Accessories

Hamama Microgreens Starter Kit and Seed Quilts Review

Good Dee’s Keto Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix Review

Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding Recipe

Low Carb Muffins & Cupcakes: Treats to Enjoy on a Keto Diet

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part Two

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One

My First Year on The Keto Diet


Reviews of the Keto Diet by Barbara C. (aka Brite-Ideas)

My Personal Keto Testimonial

How I Stayed Committed to the Ketogenic Way of Eating


Read More Reviews About Health and Wellness by Our Contributors




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