Showing posts sorted by relevance for query keto Margaret Schindel. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query keto Margaret Schindel. Sort by date Show all posts

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Snack Better With The Best Healthy Keto Cookie Dough Bites

Is raw cookie dough a guilty pleasure that you try not to indulge in, either because of the health risks associated with eating raw eggs or because you are trying to eat better? 

Whether you are trying to cut down on sugar or highly processed foods, follow a vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, low carb or ketogenic diet, or just want some healthy treats to satisfy your sweet tooth and curb your afternoon hunger pangs, you will love Bhu Keto Bites from Bhu Foods.

Today I'm reviewing these mini protein bars that come in five delicious cookie dough flavors, have a rich taste and smooth, creamy texture, are high in fiber and healthy fats, and contain no added sugars or artificial sweeteners, just minimally processed, non-GMO, organic ingredients.

Best of all, Bhu Keto Protein Bites taste just like cookie dough (yum!), but unlike that forbidden treat, they are not only safe to eat but also good for you!

Photo of Bhu Keto Bites - Delicious, High Protein, No Added Sugar Keto Cookie Dough Bites
Four of the five delicious flavors of Bhu Keto Bites mini protein bars.
Not shown: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough flavor

For several years before before I began my successful low carb keto diet journey, I had been searching for delicious, healthy protein bars or snacks that would taste good and be good for me. Unfortunately, most of the protein bars I tried either tasted like cardboard and had a dry, unpleasant texture or tasted good because they contained a lot of natural or added sugars or contained highly processed ingredients, even though they marketed themselves as healthy food.

Then, in 2019, I switched my focus from a traditional low-fat, low-calorie diet to a nutritious, low carb approach to eating that focused on healthy fats, proteins and dietary fiber with little to no added sugars and minimally processed ingredients. That's when I discovered Bhu Keto Bites (and their big brothers, Bhu Keto Bars).

10 Reasons to Love Bhu Keto Bites

How do I love Bhu Keto Bites? Let me count the ways!

1. A Healthy Treat That Tastes Like Raw Cookie Dough

  • These bite-sized mini protein bars are absolutely delicious and have a rich, creamy texture and luscious mouthfeel.

2. High in Protein, Healthy Fats and Fiber

Depending on the cookie dough flavor, these Bhu Keto Bites contain:

  • 6-7g protein
  • 10-12g fat
  • 4-6g dietary fiber

3. Low Carb and Keto Friendly

Depending on the cookie dough flavor, these Bhu Keto Bites contain:

  • 5-7g total carbs
  • 0-1g net carbs

4. Healthy, High Quality, Nutritious Ingredients

  • Organic
  • Non-GMO
  • Minimally processed

"We are committed to 100% organic, clean, ingredients. Our pricing may be slightly higher than the competition, but we believe the investment to your health and towards our planet is well worth it."
— Bhu Foods

5. No Added Sugars

  • 100% free cane sugar. 

"Our mission is to help wean people off of sugar so we wouldn’t think of adding sugar to our bars."
— Bhu Foods

6. Sweetened With Pure Monk Fruit

  • Sweetened with pure monk fruit (aka monk fruit sugar), which has numerous health benefits.
    • Monk fruit sugar is made by infusing the juice of the small, melon-like fruit in hot water and drying it to a powder.
    • It is metabolized differently than regular sugar, has a zero glycemic index and does not affect blood sugar levels or spike insulin, making it a great sugar alternative for diabetics.
    • Monk fruit has been used for centuries in Eastern medicine to treat digestive problems and colds. So, unlike sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners, monk fruit sweetener can help with, rather than cause, intestinal distress.
    • The compounds that give monk fruit sugar its sweetness (mogrosides) have anti-inflammatory effects and can help your body fight cancer.
    • Unlike regular sugar, monk fruit sweetener will not cause cavities. 
    • It's 150-200 times sweeter than cane sugar, so only a small amount is needed to achieve the desired sweetness.

Source: "What to Know About Monk Fruit Sugar," WebMD

Bhu Foods even has the chocolate chips in these Bhu Bites manufactured to their own specifications and sweetened with pure monk fruit!

7. No Sugar Alcohols

  • Bhu Bites also contain no erythritol or other sugar alcohols that can cause gas, bloating, and diarrhea in some people, or if too much is consumed.

8. Supports a Variety of Dietary Requirements

  • Vegan
  • Gluten-free
  • 100% grain-free
  • 100% soy-free
  • Diabetic-friendly

Allergy warnings: Bhu Bites are manufactured in a facility that also processes peanuts, tree nuts, eggs and possibly whey and may contain an occasional shell fragment. They also contain cashews and MCT oil (from coconuts). The White Chocolate Macadamia Cookie Dough flavor also contains macadamia nuts, and the 

10. Small But Satisfying

  • Bhu Keto Bites are small but also dense, rich and very satisfying, thanks to the significant amounts of high quality protein, healthy fats and dietary fiber.
  • They're the perfect size to enjoy with a cup of tea or coffee or a glass of milk (dairy or plant-based), as a snack, a taste of something sweet after dinner, or any time you're in the mood for "a little something," as Winnie the Pooh would say.
  • I recommend nibbling them slowly to make them last longer so you can savor every bite and prolong the deliciousness!

9. No Refrigeration Needed

  • Unlike their equally delicious and nutritious big brothers, Bhu Keto Bars, Bhu Keto Bites are shelf stable and require no refrigeration. 
  • The manufacturer recommends storing them at 72° F or cooler. During the summer, or if you live in a warmer climate, they also taste great straight from the fridge. 

Key Nutrition Data Comparison for Bhu Keto Bites Flavors

Bhu Keto Bites
Serving size: 1 piece
Calories Protein Total
Fat
Total
Carbs
Fiber Total
Sugars
Added
Sugars
Net
Carbs
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough 130 6g 11g 7g 6g 1g 0g 1g
White Chocolate Macadamia Cookie Dough 130 6g 10g 6g 5g 1g 0g 0g
Double Dark Chocolate Cookie Dough 140 6g 12g 5g 4g 1g 0g 1g
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough 140 7g 10g 7g 6g 1g 0g 1g
Chocolate Mint Cookie Dough 140 6g 12g 5g 4g 0g 0g 1g

Which Bhu Keto Bites Cookie Dough Flavor Is Your Favorite?

Honestly, I have a hard time deciding. Usually, it's whichever flavor I'm eating at the moment! All five flavors are wonderful. 

I highly recommend starting with:

  • a Bhu Keto Bites Variety Pack, which includes one bag each of:
    • Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough,
    • White Chocolate Macadamia Cookie Dough,
    • Double Dark Chocolate Cookie Dough 
    • Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

  • Chocolate Mint Cookie Dough Bhu Bites, the newest flavor, which is not included in the Variety Pack assortment. 

After you sample them all, you can reorder your favorite flavors. (If you're like me, that's all five!)

Enjoy!

Note: In addition to ordering Bhu Keto Bites on Amazon, you also may be able to find them at some branches of Whole Foods Market, Wegmans, The Vitamin Shoppe, and other retail stores, depending on where you live.



Snack Better With The Best Healthy Keto Cookie Dough Bites by Margaret Schindel


Posts About My Keto Diet Journey

My First Year on The Keto Diet

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part Two

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

Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding Recipe

Good Dee’s Keto Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix Review

Hamama Microgreens Growing Kit Review & Success Tips

My Favorite Hamama Microgreens Seed Quilt Accessories

Keto Cheddar Cheese Biscuits With Chives Recipe

The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe

The Best Low Carb Keto Gift Ideas: Keto Gift Guide

The Best Low Carb Keto Cinnamon Muffins

Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix and Yeast Bread Recipe

The Good Chocolate 100% Organic No Sugar Dark Chocolate Review

The Best Advice to Maintain Your Keto Diet Weight Loss

My New Irresistibly Delicious Keto Cheese Crackers Recipe

Luscious Low Carb Keto Triple Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies Recipe

Quick & Easy Livlo Blueberry Scones Keto Baking Mix Review

Snack Better With The Best Healthy Keto Cookie Dough Bites

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 Product Reviews by Our Review This Reviews Contributors

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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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One

On June 4, 2020, I kicked off a new series of posts reviewing my experiences during My First Year on the Keto Diet and sharing some of my insights and lessons learned over the course of my successful journey so far. Since that post was published, I’ve lost another pound, even though I’m no longer actively trying to lose weight, bringing my total weight loss since May 25, 2019 to 57 pounds. I am healthier and feel better than I have in decades. (Oh, and being able to wear shorts and sleeveless tops this summer without feeling embarrassed feels pretty amazing, too!)

Text "Set Yourself Up for Ketogenic Diet Success" on a background photo collage of keto-friendly foods
©2020 Margaret Schindel. All rights reserved.

Last spring, after a serious medical scare when I learned that being obese and post-menopausal had put me at significantly higher risk for endometrial cancer, among other life-threatening diseases, my doctor stressed the importance of losing my 50+ pounds of excess weight. I had tried many times to strictly limit my consumption of the foods I constantly craved—sugars, grains, and other foods that are high in carbohydrates or highly processed—and failed just as many time.

After reading a lot about what causes those types of food cravings and how to lose weight without giving into them, I realized that I and many others with an obesity problem had become psychologically, emotionally, and in some ways, almost physically addicted to those foods, and in my case, it probably dated back to my childhood. Note: If you're interested in learning more about this phenomenon, the journal articles, "Food Addiction: Implications for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Overeating," Nutrients, September 2019, and "Sugar Addiction: From Evolution to Revolution," Frontiers in Psychiatry, November 2018, discuss it in depth.

The good news: I finally understood why all my previous efforts to lose weight and keep it off had failed. The bad news: Losing enough weight to meaningfully lower my risk for developing cancer and other life-threatening illnesses—and keeping it off—wouldn't be as simple as just cutting back on calories, sugar, and flour, and getting more exercise. Achieving those goals would require an all-in commitment to overcoming my roughly 60-year-long carbohydrate, processed foods, and sugar addiction for good.

Preparing for Success on the Keto Diet

From personal experience, I knew that no matter how badly I wanted and needed to succeed, or how hard I tried, desire and effort without the proper preparation would not be enough to make that success a reality. To quote legendary former college football coach Bobby Knight (who won 902 NCAA Division I men's college basketball games and knows a thing or two about critical success factors), "The will to succeed is important, but what's more important is the will to prepare."

Choosing to spend a few weeks preparing myself mentally, psychologically, socially, and environmentally before giving up the foods I was addicted to "cold turkey," whether temporarily or for good, was one of the best decisions I made.

Following the most important things I focused on during those weeks of preparation that helped me be successful on my keto weight loss journey.

Making a Serious Commitment to Losing Weight and Eating Better

I was overweight and, yes, clinically obese, for decades, and it made me miserable. It badly eroded my self-esteem. And as a former clotheshorse who worked in the fashion industry in New York City for many years, it was painful to try on beautiful clothes and see how bad they looked on me (or how bad I looked in them). In retrospect, even that constant pain and shame must not have been enough motivation to make the dramatic, long-term changes to my eating habits needed to lose the excess pounds, since my many attempts at dieting over the years had all failed.

This time, my serious medical scare provided a powerful enough motivation to make me commit 100% to fundamentally change my way of eating, and choosing better quality, more nutritious, and less processed foods. Without that kick in the butt, I doubt I would have succeeded this time, either. I encourage you to think about what your motivation is to commit to this much more restrictive way of eating.

Many people boast that they have lost a lot of weight following their own version of a ketogenic diet that includes "cheating" on a regular basis, or even a planned rotation schedule of being "on" and "off" keto. Others might lose weight using a less restrictive variation of the classic keto diet approach, such as so-called dirty or lazy keto. If that works for them, great!

I can only share what has worked for me, an approach that I chose based on my own situation, goals, and self-knowledge based on past experience. Everyone is different. As always, your mileage (and your choices) may vary.

Researching the Keto Diet and Understanding Its Basic Concepts

Keto is a low carb, high fat, moderate protein approach to eating, often referred to as LCHF (low carb, high fat). Regardless of whether you follow this dietary approach or what foods you eat, losing weight requires a calorie deficit, i.e., you need to eat fewer calories than your body uses. On a ketogenic diet, most of your calories should come from healthy fats, a smaller percentage should come from from proteins, and very few calories should come from carbohydrates (and, ideally, mostly from low-carb vegetables and berries).

That's a very simplified overview, and I had to do weeks of extensive research and reading before I had a good grasp on all the most important aspects of this way of eating. Here are a few of the many resources that helped me educate myself on this subject.

Helpful Online Guides and Articles

  • "The Ketogenic Diet - A Keto Guide for Beginners" on ruled.me is one of the best places to start familiarizing yourself with the keto or low carb approach to eating. It contains lots of helpful, actionable, easy-to-understand information and advice, including explanations of macros and net carbs.

Here are a few other articles I found helpful in understanding the benefits and risks of this type of diet:

Recommended Books

Although I focused primarily on cookbooks, some also contained helpful information, explanations, and inspiration for anyone interested in living a low-carb lifestyle, like these:

I also own two wonderful cookbooks by well known, highly respected keto diet author and expert Maria Emmerich. I'm also looking forward to adding this book, which she co-wrote with her husband, to my growing collection:

    My Favorite Keto YouTube Channels

    Strict vs. Lazy vs. Dirty Keto

    As I explained in my previous post, there is no such thing as "the" keto diet (or ketogenic diet) outside the context of certain medical treatments. There is only "a" keto/ketogenic diet, which is a low carbohydrate, moderate protein, high fat approach to eating based on achieving a metabolic state called ketosis the majority of the time, which enables the body to become fat-adapted.

    Despite this, there are countless self-proclaimed "keto experts" (aka "keto police") who have lost weight using this approach and are on a mission to "educate" (i.e., lecture) everyone else on the "rules" about what they (or another keto "expert") are convinced is the right or wrong to follow a ketogenic diet. They often will argue passionately with other self-appointed "keto police" about whose rules are the "real" rules, which is ridiculous and, more important, extremely confusing for newbies to this way of eating who are trying to figure out whom to trust as a reliable source of information and advice.

    People often break out the high-level differences in ketogenic diet strategies into three groups. (Again, what each approach is called and how those labels are defined can vary, depending on who is doing the labeling and defining.) Most commonly, these three approaches are:

    "Clean Keto" aka Strict or Classic Keto
    The "clean keto" approach focuses on high quality foods and optimal nutrition to support a healthy lifestyle.

    "Lazy Keto"
    Lazy keto" usually refers to tracking carbohydrates and limiting them to 20-25 net carbs per day, without calculating/tracking macros or calories or eating specific types of foods. However, some people use this term to mean simply eating only keto-friendly foods—no calculating or tracking macros or calories.

    "Dirty Keto" aka IIFYM (If It Fits Your Macros)
    "Dirty keto" is basically eating anything you want, as long as it fits within your daily carbs and calorie limits, protein target, and fat allowance. This approach focuses exclusively on weight loss, simplicity, and freedom of choice, without concern for nutrition or food quality.

    Choosing and Personalizing an Optimal Ketogenic Diet Strategy

    "Lazy keto" and "dirty keto" would have taken less work and were tempting options. Ultimately, however, I decided that the best strategy to help me kick my food addiction and lose the weight I needed to at a reasonable pace would take a mostly "clean keto" approach, but slightly less strict. I would focus primarily on cutting out all added sugars and refined carbohydrates, eating more whole foods, choosing grass-fed, organic, and/or non-GMO foods whenever possible, cutting way down on processed foods, and increasing my daily consumption of fresh, low-carbohydrate vegetables.

    I also decided to track my dietary fiber intake and supplement what I was able to get from food with a safe, gentle, osmotic laxative like MiraLAX, which an endoscopy nurse I met during my most recent colonoscopy visit told me she takes daily to stay "regular." Sometimes I buy an equivalent product from a different brand, such as Member's Mark ClearLAX or Amazon Basic Care ClearLax, that has the same active ingredient (polyethylene glycol 3350) but costs less per dose.

    With so much weight to lose, and a powerful and urgent motivation to do lose it and also lower my health risks, I decided that I didn't want to "cheat" when eating out, or for holidays or special occasions, or when I was under a lot of stress. To support that goal over a long period of time, I knew I would need to be proactive in preventing myself from feeling deprived, and decided to plan homemade or purchased keto-friendly treats, made with high-quality, nutritious, and some minimally and, occasionally, moderately processed ingredients, into my daily menus.

    When I chose to get started on keto, my short-term goal was to lose the weight I needed to in a way that I could sustain as long as necessary. I made a commitment to myself to do whatever it took, for as long as necessary, to achieve that goal. The strategy I chose to follow turned out to work extremely well for me, based on my individual needs, challenges, and goals. Someone else might do better with a significantly different approach.

    I encourage anyone who is seriously considering a ketogenic approach to losing weight to be brutally honest with themselves about how much, how, and for how long they are willing to change their eating habits, and then define their own personal guidelines/rules for their unique keto journey and modify them over time, if needed, as they discover what is and isn't working well for them.

    Consulting With a Doctor

    When the surgeon explained that my being both obese and postmenopausal were the most likely factors in my developing cervical polyps, she also told me that losing my excess body fat was one of the best ways to reduce my risk for developing either additional polyps or uterine cancer. During my pre-op follow-up visit, I told her that I had family members and friends who had lost weight successfully on keto, and that I was considering a "clean keto" diet, with a focus on making healthy, nutritionally sound choices and losing pounds at a moderate rate. She said it sounded like a reasonable approach and one worth trying, at least for a period of time. So, I was fortunate to have her support. Clearly, the risks of obesity appeared higher than any risks associated with such a restricted diet.

    Some medical or nutrition experts, however, are not in favor of a ketogenic diet for weight loss. Some also have misconceptions about keto, and many advise against it because it is so restrictive. But most support adopting a low-carb diet as a permanent lifestyle change. In fact, I don't know of any medical or nutrition professional who would not encourage patients to either cut out or restrict sugar, refined carbs and processed foods from their diet.

    It's also important to understand that keto is not always the best option, or even a good one, for every person. If you have a health condition, eating a very low carb diet might help, but it also could make it worse. So, it's best to have this conversation with your doctor, and to discuss what things should be monitored, how often, and whether you can monitor them yourself or will need a medical professional to run periodic tests.

    Note: If your doctor isn't aware of recent evidence-based studies and their findings regarding the potential health and medical benefits of a keto or LCHF approach to eating, you might consider sharing either of both of the following articles published in professional journals:

    Determining a Daily Calorie Target and Calculating Macros

    Like many other people, I found the not only the concept of macros but also how to calculate what mine should be extremely confusing. 

    In the context of keto, "macros" is short for macronutrients: carbohydrates, protein, and fats. A person's macros refers to 1) the relative percentages of their target daily calories allocated to each of those macronutrients, and 2) the number of grams of net carbs, protein and fat that person can/should eat daily. 

    One of the most common macronutrient ratios is 5/25/70, i.e., 5% of the person's daily calories come from "net carbs," 25% come from protein, and 70% come from fat. To clarify a common misconception, this does NOT mean that for someone who chooses a 5/25/70 macro ratio, 70% of the amount of foods they eat on keto will consist of fats. Fats have 9 calories per gram, while proteins and carbohydrates each have only 4 calories per gram. So, allocating 70% of your daily calories to fat translates to a much smaller percentage in terms of weight (in grams). 

    For daily tracking purposes, what matters is the daily number of grams of carbohydrate, protein and fat consumed, as well as your total calories.

    Net Carbs vs. Total Carbohydrate Grams

    Most people on keto base their macros calculations and tracking on net carbs, rather than total carbs. The reason is that dietary fiber, most sugar alcohols, as well as two of my favorite keto-friendly sweeteners, Allulose and pentose (e.g., BochaSweet brand sugar replacement) are not digested, so they aren't metabolized and used by the body for energy. This means they don't affect achieving or sustaining a metabolic state of ketosis (which is the core of a ketogenic diet approach). 

    The most common way to calculate "net carbs" (and the formula I use) is: 

    Total Carbohydrate - Fiber - (most) Sugar Alcohols - Allulose or pentose (e.g., BochaSweet) sweetener = Net Carbs 

    Some people only subtract the dietary fiber. Others subtract only half the sugar alcohols and/or Allulose or pentose (e.g., BochaSweet). Still others track total carbohydrate grams rather than calculating net carbs, which is much more restrictive (or is based on a higher percentage of carbohydrates).

    Keto Calculators / Macro Calculators

    When I was preparing to get started on keto, I had no idea how to choose a ratio for my macros, how many calories my body burned, how to decide on a calorie deficit percentage, or how to calculate how many grams of net carbs, protein and fat to eat each day. Fortunately, there were lots of articles and calculators to help.

    Ruled.me's ketogenic macro calculator is one of the most user-friendly of those I've tried. It's a good tool to help you figure out your daily calories target for weight loss and your starting macros, both the ratio (as a percent of calories) and, most importantly, the number of fat, carbohydrate and protein grams and calories you will consume daily on keto).

    Downloading Carb Manager or Another Good App to Track Calories, Macros, and Other Key Nutrients

    The thing I resisted most when starting my keto diet journey, and also the one I knew would be critical to my success, was committing to track every bite of food and every sip of drink that went into my mouth before I consumed it. Lots of people lose weight on keto without doing this. I can only share what was important to my weight loss success on this diet.

    There are a number of good apps for tracking your macros and calories. Some can also help you track other key nutrients. If you have high blood pressure, for example, it might be important for you to track your sodium intake. For me, tracking my fiber intake was a high priority, since many foods that are high in fiber are also high in carbohydrates and/or calories, which makes it hard to get enough dietary fiber daily for gastrointestinal health (and to avoid constipation!).

    My favorite tracking app, which I use every day, several times a day and recommend highly, is Carb Manager. The free version of this app has everything you need to track your macros, other nutrients of your choice, and calories. (I subsequently upgraded to the paid, premium version because it offers additional features I find helpful, but it's absolutely not necessary for keto.)

    Carb Manager has a huge library of foods (many of which were entered by other users, so I always check user-entered nutrition data against the manufacturer's nutrition data from the package label). You can make a custom entry for any food, either by manually entering the nutrition data from the package label or manufacturer's website, or by pointing your camera at the barcode on the packaging, if available, to see whether the data for that product can be imported into the app automatically (or has been entered already by someone else).

    Note: Carb Manager automatically calculates net carbs by subtracting fiber and sugar alcohol grams from the total carbohydrate grams. However, it doesn't yet include Allulose, which is a relatively new keto-friendly sweetener, in its calculations. Also, the USDA doesn't require manufacturers to list Allulose in the nutrition data, so it's not always clear how many grams of Allulose are in some products that use it. Fortunately, when you enter or edit the nutrition information for a food in Carb Manager, you have the ability to choose to enter carbohydrate grams as net carbs or total carbohydrates. Net carbs are often printed on the packaging for foods containing Allulose.

    One of the things I love about Carb Manager is that it has a macro calculator with adjustment sliders that can help you see in advance how changing your macro percentages would affect your daily fat, protein and carbohydrate grams, or how increasing or decreasing your desired calorie deficit percentage would affect the number of calories and net carb, protein and fat grams you can eat and the estimated length of time to reach your weight loss goal.

    Another great aspect of the Carb Manager app is its "Smart Macros" feature option that, if you turn it on, will automatically adjust your daily macros and calories over time, as your weight changes. The app also allows you to enter and track your body measurements, BMI, and other types of metrics to gauge your progress, a feature that I use and find extremely helpful, since the numbers on the scale can (and usually do) fluctuate regularly, often for no apparent reason, but a tape measure doesn't lie.

    This terrific app has many more features and capabilities than I can go into in this post, but the website has a very robust database of articles that explains each feature and how to use it. You can also take a brief tour of the Carb Manager app to get a sense of how it works and what the user experience is like before you download it.

    We're only halfway through the list of things I did to prepare myself for success before starting my keto diet journey. I'll cover the rest in my next post, Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part Two.

    "The best way to predict your future is to create it." 〜 Abraham Lincoln


    Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One by Margaret Schindel


    Posts In This Series About My Keto Diet Journey

    My First Year on The Keto Diet

    Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One

    Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part Two

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

    Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding Recipe

    Good Dee’s Keto Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix Review

    Hamama Microgreens Growing Kit Review & Success Tips

    My Favorite Hamama Microgreens Seed Quilt Accessories

    Keto Cheddar Cheese Biscuits With Chives Recipe

    The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe

    The Best Low Carb Keto Gift Ideas: Keto Gift Guide

    The Best Low Carb Keto Cinnamon Muffins

    Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix and Yeast Bread Recipe

    The Good Chocolate 100% Organic No Sugar Dark Chocolate Review

    The Best Advice to Maintain Your Keto Diet Weight Loss

    My New Irresistibly Delicious Keto Cheese Crackers Recipe

    Luscious Low Carb Keto Triple Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies Recipe

    Quick & Easy Livlo Blueberry Scones Keto Baking Mix Review

    Snack Better With The Best Healthy Keto Cookie Dough Bites

    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.”


    FOLLOW US ON:

    Wednesday, March 24, 2021

    Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix and Yeast Bread Recipe

    loaf of bread with text "Keto Yeast Bread made with Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Bread Mix"
    Delicious keto bread that isn't heavy, dense, or crumbly!

    When I began my successful keto diet journey in 2019, Maya Krampf's popular Wholesome Yum website and The Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Cookbook (which I have recommended in my Keto Gift Guide and other posts here on Review This Reviews) quickly became two of my go-to resources for quick and easy, healthy keto recipes and reliable information about the ketogenic approach to eating. Maya also has developed a line of high quality, low carb, gluten free, keto food products made with clean ingredients (including her excellent Besti keto-friendly sweeteners), and new products continue to be added to her Wholesome Yum Foods online shop. 

    The Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix that launched on December 21, 2020 is one of Maya's newest products. I think it's also one of her best!

    A few days ago, she also published a new Keto Yeast Bread Recipe for this bread mix that delivers even more impressive and delicious results. I’m excited to share my in-depth product review of this excellent Wholesome Yum mix and compare the differences in between the loaves I've made with original recipe and the new keto yeast bread recipe. 

    Photo of Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Bread Mix package
    This keto bread mix has all the pre-measured dry ingredients for a delicious, fresh-baked loaf

    Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix, Original Recipe (No Yeast)

    The directions currently printed on the bag require just three ingredients in addition to the packaged mix: 6 tablespoons of butter, 4 large eggs, and 3/4 cup (6 ounces) of unsweetened almond milk. 

    You can replace the almond milk with a different keto-friendly milk, if you wish.

    Line the Loaf Pan With Baking Parchment Paper

    The recipe calls for the prepared bread mix to be baked in an 8" x 4" loaf pan lined with baking parchment paper, with the parchment paper overhanging at least the two long sides of the pan. 

    However, the 8.5" x 4.5" OXO Good Grips Non-Stick Pro Loaf Pan I have been using (see my product review) has worked fine.

    Photo of parchment paper lined loaf pan with box of baking parchment and scissors
    Make sure the parchment paper overhangs the long sides of the pan

    I have been lining the pan with unbleached If You Care Parchment Baking Paper, which is chlorine-free and compostable. It's also silicone coated, and nothing sticks to it! 

    For environmental reasons, the box doesn't have a serrated metal cutting strip. Since the larger, softer cardboard "teeth" don't cut as cleanly as the metal ones, I just use scissors to trim the a sheet of the desired length.

    Allow Time to Bring the Ingredients to Room Temperature

    All the ingredients should be at room temperature when make the keto bread dough/batter.

    Note: Although there is an asterisked line to this effect in the printed directions on the bag, it's easy to miss, not only because the very small type is hard to read, but also because there are no corresponding asterisks attached to the individual ingredients. (A single asterisk with no corresponding reference is meaningless.) It would be helpful if this were fixed during the next packaging print run. 

    When a recipe calls for room temperature ingredients, they should be at approximately 70 °F (21 °C), with the exception of butter. Room temperature butter should be a bit cooler, roughly 65 °F (18 °C). It has reached the correct temperature when it is still a bit cool to the touch and retains its shape, but has softened enough to leave an indentation when pressed with a fingertip.

    Photo of ingredients to make Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Bread Mix: bag of mix, 6 tablespoons of butter, 4 eggs, and 3/4 cup almond milk
    One bag of mix + butter, eggs, and almond milk = quick and easy keto bread!

    Why Using Room Temperature Ingredients Matters When Making The Keto Bread Mix Batter

    Using room temperature butter, eggs, and almond milk allows the butter to cream properly and the eggs and butter to be fully incorporated into the creamed butter, so there are no remaining clumps of butter after the dry ingredients in the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix are added. 

    Conversely, using ingredients that are too warm or too cold will likely produce less-than-optimal results.

    When I tried the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix for the first time this January, the New England winter meant that our north-facing kitchen (with its large expanse of windows) was quite chilly. As a result, even after sitting out on the counter for a couple of hours, my "room temperature" eggs, and almond milk were much cooler than 70 °F (21 °C), and even my butter was colder than 65 °F (18 °C) and had very little "give" when pressed with a fingertip. 

    As a result, even after being creamed at high speed with my trusty KitchenAid mixer for for nearly 15 minutes, the butter never softened fully, and when I added the eggs and almond milk to it, they wouldn't incorporate smoothly, no matter how long I beat the mixture. 

    You can see in following photo that the first batch of keto bread dough/batter didn't come together as smoothly as it should and would have if my kitchen hadn't been so chilly.

    Photo of bread dough in parchment paper lined loaf pan
    A cold kitchen made my butter a bit uncooperative!

    In retrospect, I could have put the unshelled, room temperature eggs in a bowl of warm water for 5–10 minutes and warmed the almond milk gently on the stovetop or in the microwave. However, the butter still would have been a problem, since using any form of added heat to soften butter without melting it is a tricky proposition.

    The Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix Recipe Is Pretty Forgiving

    Despite my inability to bring the ingredients to "recipe" room temperature, and the fact that we currently have only a tabletop oven (our built-in double oven died a few years ago), the loaf baked quite nicely.
    Photo of baked easy keto bread mix loaf in pan on rack
    The first loaf I made with this keto bread mix turned out well, even with the too-cool ingredients

    Making low carb, gluten-free bread with Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix was easy. The hard part was waiting until the next day, as the package directions recommend, before slicing into the loaf so I could taste it!

    Photo of baked keto bread loaf cut in half on cutting board with bread knife
    A lighter, less dense texture than most keto bread

    Although it is possible to find low carb bread recipes that don't contain almond flour, most of them do. Ground almonds are heavier than grain flours, lack gluten for structure, and interact differently with leavening agents. As a result, most loaves made from a keto bread recipe are pretty dense, and tend to crumble easily.

    So, when I cut into the loaf I made with the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix, I was very pleased to see small air pockets, indicating a somewhat lighter, less dense texture than most low carb bread made with almond flour. (You can see the air pockets better in the close-up photo of my half-sandwich.)

    Not only did it make great toast, it also was less crumbly than most other keto-friendly almond flour breads, which allowed me to make a sandwich that didn't fall apart as soon as I bit into it!

    Photo of half sandwich made with keto bread, keto jam, and keto chocolate hazelnut spread
    My sweet half-sandwich on keto bread made with the Wholesome Yum mix
    (Note: For scale, this is a salad plate.)

    After making a great slice of toast, the next thing I tried was a sandwich. I had just received my order of keto-friendly Good Good sweet raspberry jam (which is currently out of stock, but other flavors are available, including Good Good Sweet Blueberry Jam) and ChocZero Chocolate Hazelnut Spread (a keto diet friendly alternative to Nutella), so I decided to cut a slice in half and make myself a raspberry-chocolate hazelnut half-sandwich. (Hey, don't knock it until you try it! I like to think of it as a 21st-century update to the Fluffernutter, a lunchbox favorite back in the 1960s, when I was a kid, that I can't imagine eating today.) 

    I was able to eat my half-sandwich without the bread crumbling or breaking, which was a major improvement over most other keto bread recipes or mixes I had tried. 

    The New Keto Yeast Bread Recipe Makes an Even Better Low Carb Loaf 

    Even though I was pleased with the results I was getting from Maya's new keto bread mix and had already begun to write a product review of it for Review This Reviews, I was extremely excited by her revelation last month in one of the Wholesome Yum Facebook groups I belong to that she had been working on a keto yeast bread recipe for the new mix and thought she was close to perfecting it. 

    I knew that adding yeast to the batter/dough would result in a taller loaf with a lighter, airier, more sponge-like texture and might also give the bread some of the flavor characteristics of conventional yeast breads. 

    I decided to hold off on my product review of the bread mix until the new recipe had been published, so I could compare it to the original and confirm or correct my assumptions about the effects of adding yeast to the batter. 

    Photo of Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Bread Mix and other ingredients for the keto yeast bread recipe
    Feeding the yeast with inulin allows this keto yeast bread recipe to be 100% sugar free 

    The Yeast Bread Version of the Recipe Adds Two Ingredients

    Active Dry Yeast

    You can use any brand of active dry yeast, such as Fleischmann's or Red Star. I decided to order my favorite from my BK (before keto) baking, SAF-Instant Premium Yeast - Red, which is widely used by professional bakers and consistently produces superior results with any type of bread, pizza, croissant, or other unsweetened doughs. 

    I discovered the red SAF-Instant Premium Yeast many years ago on the King Arthur Baking website (a reliable source of baking expertise and a go-to resource for baking enthusiasts). The fact that it's the yeast they use most often in their test kitchens was a good enough endorsement for me! 

    In addition to improving bread dough baking results, a 1-pound vacuum-sealed bag/brick of SAF-instant yeast ends up costing much, much less per use than the 4-ounce jars or strips of three individual packets of active dry yeast sold in supermarkets. 

    I keep mine in the freezer in an airtight container, where it remains good for years, and unopened packages have a two-year shelf life. 

    Tip: If you're not following a low carb or keto diet, use SAF-Instant Premium Yeast - Gold, rather than the one in the red package, for making conventional sweet dough recipes. 

    Inulin Powder

    In this recipe, the active dry yeast is fed with powdered inulin, a soluble fiber and prebiotic, instead of the sugar or other high glycemic index sweeteners that recipes typically used for that purpose. 

    I was in such a rush to order inulin powder for this recipe that I inadvertently ordered a huge 2.2-pound bag of it on Amazon (with free Amazon Prime delivery)! However, since it you need only one teaspoon of it per 2¼ teaspoons (or one packet) of active dry yeast, I recommend buying a smaller package, such as this 8-ounce bag of 100% pure inulin powder that is made in the USA (in Utah) from non-GMO Jerusalem artichokes, sometimes called sunchokes. 

    Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread Recipe 

    To make the keto yeast bread recipe, you start by mixing the batter according to the original recipe, then fold in active dry yeast bloomed in lukewarm water mixed with inulin powder, and set the covered yeast batter aside in a warm spot to proof. After the yeast bread batter/dough has been allowed to rise for an hour, it is transferred to the parchment-line loaf pan and baked at the same temperature, and for the same length of time, as the original recipe. And, like the original recipe, the baked loaf should be removed to a cooling rack and left until it has cooled completely (overnight, if possible) before you slice into it. 

    Here are the ingredients, tools, supplies, and equipment you will need to make Maya's new keto yeast bread recipe. 

    Ingredients:

    • 2¼ teaspoons (or 1 packet) active dry yeast
    • 1/4 cup (59 ml) lukewarm water, 105–115 °F (41–46 °C)
    • 1 teaspoon of inulin powder *
    • 1 bag Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix
    • 6 tablespoons butter **
    • 4 large eggs ** (not medium, extra-large, or jumbo size)
    • 3/4 cup (6 fl. oz.) unsweetened almond milk ** ***

    Tools, Supplies, and Equipment:

    • A hand mixer or stand mixer 
    • A large mixing bowl
    • A rubber scraper (to scrape the bowl and beaters)
    • Plastic wrap (to cover the bowl of prepared yeast dough before setting it aside to proof/rise) ****
    • An 8" x 4" loaf pan
    • Baking parchment paper to line the pan (I highly recommend using unbleached baking parchment)
    • A cooling rack

    * The inulin powder is a prebiotic fiber that is used in this recipe to feed the yeast. It is a keto-friendly alternative to feeding the yeast with sugar, honey, or other high-glycemic sweeteners that can elevate your blood glucose and insulin levels. If you follow a strict sugar-free or keto diet and want to ensure that your keto bread is absolutely sugar free, the inulin in this recipe is an essential ingredient that cannot be substituted. However, for people whose dietary requirements and preferences are less strict, the recipe also offers the option to replace the teaspoon of inulin powder with a teaspoon of coconut sugar. 

    ** At room temperature

    *** Use plain, unsweetened almond milk for this recipe. Unless the package specifically says "unsweetened almond milk," assume it contains added sugar, and is not suitable for a low carb, sugar-free, or keto diet.

    **** I recommend biodegradable, reusable beeswax food wrap as a more sustainable and environmentally friendly alternative to disposable plastic wrap (aka cling film). It's available either precut or in rolled sheets that you can cut to size, as needed. Although I own and use both types, I'd suggest buying an uncut roll to ensure that you'll have a large enough piece to cover your large mixing bowl while the keto bread batter is proofing.

    Directions:

    Follow Maya's full Keto Yeast Bread Recipe on Wholesome Yum, which provides not only step-by-step directions with photos, but also helpful tips, refrigerator and freezer storage instructions, and an FAQ that answers questions such as as whether yeast and inulin are keto-friendly ingredients.

    This Keto Yeast Bread Recipe Turned Out Even Better The Second Time!

    Update 4/8/21: Last weekend, we finally had a warm-ish spring day here in New England (a "balmy" 58 degrees Fahrenheit, lol!). I had just finished the last slice from my first loaf, and hoped that my room temperature eggs, butter and nut milk would be warmer and more cooperative this time. Indeed, they were! I was able to get the butter to cream properly, so it was nicely pale and fluffy. And the eggs and nut milk (I used macadamia nut milk this time) were fully incorporated into the creamed butter, so there were no large lumps of butter in my yeast bread batter, which made it much easier to smooth the top after transferring it to the parchment paper-lined loaf pan.

    Second loaf of keto yeast bread on cutting board
    My second keto yeast bread loaf 

    Comparing Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix Original and Keto Yeast Bread Recipes 

    Height

    When I followed the original Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix recipe printed on the bag, the top of the baked loaf remained lower than the rim of the baking pan.

    Photo of baked keto bread loaf in pan, made with recipe on bag of mix
    The basic recipe without yeast produces a shorter loaf

    However, when I followed the new keto yeast bread recipe, the batter's volume increased considerably as it proofed, which produced a baked loaf that was taller than baking pan.

    Taller loaf in pan, made with keto yeast bread recipe
    Adding yeast to the original batter recipe produces a larger, taller loaf that rises above the pan rim

    Size and Texture

    The recipe printed on the bag produced slices that were slightly larger, and had more air pockets and a lighter texture, than typical keto breads.

    Sliced Wholesome Yum Keto Bread

    As you can see, the slices of this loaf, which was made with the Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread Recipe, were significantly larger and had many more air pockets and and an even lighter texture vs. those cut from previous loaf made with the original Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix recipe.

    Sliced Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread loaf

    Time and Effort

    The time it takes to bloom the yeast and fold it into the prepared batter is minimal. 

    However, the yeasted dough also needs to be covered and set aside to proof before it is transferred to the parchment paper-lined pan, which add 60 minutes to the total time, start-to-finish . 

    On the other hand, since the batter doesn't need to be monitored while it's proofing, that time can be spent elsewhere, on other activities.

    Bottom Line

    Unless I'm pressed for time or can't start baking until later in the day, I consider the superior loaf produced with Maya's new Wholesome Yum Keto Yeast Bread Recipe well worth the minimal additional effort and the one-hour delay while the batter is proofing.

    However, even without the addition of yeast, the Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix is a convenient, time-saving, and delicious option for making freshly baked, keto-friendly bread.

    Wholesome Yum Easy Keto Bread Mix and Yeast Bread Recipe by Margaret Schindel


    Posts In This Series About My Keto Diet Journey

    My First Year on The Keto Diet

    Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part One

    Preparing to Succeed on the Keto Diet, Part Two

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

    Low Carb Keto Chocolate Yogurt Granola Chip Pudding Recipe

    Good Dee’s Keto Cookie Low Carb Baking Mix Review

    Hamama Microgreens Growing Kit Review & Success Tips

    My Favorite Hamama Microgreens Seed Quilt Accessories

    Keto Cheddar Cheese Biscuits With Chives Recipe

    The Ultimate Keto Hot Chocolate Recipe

    The Best Low Carb Keto Gift Ideas: Keto Gift Guide

    The Best Low Carb Keto Cinnamon Muffins

    Wholesome Yum Keto Bread Mix and Yeast Bread Recipe

    The Good Chocolate 100% Organic No Sugar Dark Chocolate Review

    The Best Advice to Maintain Your Keto Diet Weight Loss

    My New Irresistibly Delicious Keto Cheese Crackers Recipe

    Luscious Low Carb Keto Triple Peppermint Cheesecake Brownies Recipe

    Quick & Easy Livlo Blueberry Scones Keto Baking Mix Review

    Snack Better With The Best Healthy Keto Cookie Dough Bites

    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

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