Low Carb Pumpkin Brownie Bites

If you're not a chocolate lover now, you will be after eating one of these...!
If you’re not a chocolate lover now, you will be after eating one of these…!

Hello Your Fit Day Friends!

I’m kind of on a chocolate roll these days. Funny, because I’m not even a chocolate lover. In fact, you’ll never see me go hunting for chocolate, or wear one of those Death by Chocolate T-shirts.

But still, I love making my sugar free low carb treats…and chocolate is good for us (right?)…and practically everyone I know will snatch up a piece of chocolate something, if offered.

So… I’m offering,..with my Low Carb Chocolate Pumpkin Brownie Bites!

This recipe is a variation of my Melt In Your Mouth Chocolate Chiffon Brownie Cake, the one where I used Kabocha squash (known also as Japanese pumpkin) and Splenda granules. The one that tastes like a chocolate truffle!

In this Low Carb Chocolate Pumpkin Brownie Bites recipe I’ve replaced the Splenda with erythritol and liquid stevia.

And for convenience, and because some people can’t find kabocha squash in their area, I used canned pumpkin.

Each bite melts in your mouth, and tastes just as decadent as my Chocolate Chiffon Brownie Cake. And if you let it sit in the fridge for a day it becomes nice and fudge-y!

These Low Carb Chocolate Pumpkin Brownie Bites are not too sweet, so you may want to add extra sweetener. But I think it’s really really good just the way it is!!

For most of my pumpkin baking treats I usually use kabocha squash, which is also called Japanese pumpkin.  I love kabocha and have been using it for more than 20 years. You can read about kabocha here.

Crispy on the outside, melt-in-your-mouth on the inside!!
Crispy on the outside, melt-in-your-mouth on the inside!!

So here’s how I made these brownie bites:

First, I sifted the dry ingredients together, minus some of the sweetener which is used for the egg whites.02_dry_mixture

Then I beat the egg whites in a stainless steel bowl until frothy (copper bowls are best, so they say; and you can also use glass),03_foamy_eggwhites

at which time I added in the cream of tarter. I continued beating until soft peaks formed,04_softpeak_eggwhites

and then added in the sweetener of choice (See notes below), a little bit at a time so it wouldn’t fly around the room. (In the pictures I used erythritol and liquid Splenda)

After it was all incorporated I beat for about another 30 seconds, just until stiff peaks formed. When they are fluffy, STOP your beating!

These are egg whites whipped until stiff peaks
Whip it! Whip it good!

Make sure not to over beat the whites or they can liquify again. And if they’re too stiff they will get dry and crack when you are folding in the other ingredients. If this happens make sure not to panic! Just add in another egg white and carry on. It’s a learning experience…all will be OK!!

Next I gently poured the squash/egg mixture on top of the egg whites. 06_pumpkin_on_top_eggwhites

Then I folded in the squash/egg mixture until all incorporated.07_pumpkin_mixed_eggwhites

So it looked like this,08_pumpkin_eggwhite_batter

Then I sifted and folded in the dry mixture, in 4 equal siftings, until no pockets of the dry mix was left visible.06_sifted_dry_mixture_on_eggwhites

This part takes a lot of patience and time. Because every time you think it’s all mixed in another little pocket appears underneath the egg whites. So you kind of have to gently lift that bubble of egg white/dry mix, and shake the spatula against the bowl when it appears, so it bursts out the dry mix hidden inside, and then keep folding. I told you this takes patience!! But it’s well worth the effort in the end!07_eggwhite_cocoa

Your final batter will look like this:

Try not to eat the batter, like I do!!
Try not to eat the batter, like I do!!

If you’re not too sure on how to fold flour, or any other ingredients into egg whites, refer to my Lemon Chiffon Poppy Seed Cake recipe directions and watch the video on folding.

Then I divided my batter evenly (about 2.5 tbsp per cup) into 8 greased muffin cups without the parchment paper-because they come out more crispy-and placed them on the middle rack. (Or you can use parchment lined muffin tins, but they are not as crisp on top and sides and bottom).DebbyK Low Carb Chocolate Brownie Bites

And finally, after baking in a 350 degree oven for 45-50 minutes (while being tortured with the smell of chocolate wafting through my apartment) out from the oven they came. As hard as it was to do, I let them sit for 15 minutes.

DebbyK Low Carb Chocolate Brownie Bites

Then I plated them up…12_round_stacked_closeup

and devoured every last one. Well, that part wasn’t hard at all!!12_round_stacked_02

Really, I did! Because my chocolate brownie bites, have 24 grams of protein for the entire batter. I’d qualify that as a complete meal!

I like to schemer some my home made coconut butter, or some of my homemade chocolate pudding , on top, to add some good fats to the experience! So go ahead, have your cake and eat it too…for dinner!!

BTW: The macros for canned pumpkin and kabocha are very similar.

Notes about Sweeteners and carb counts:

Using Splenda Granules and erythritol: The first time I made these brownies I used Splenda Granules. (Yes! I eat Splenda!) This is what helps impart that light and airy melt in your mouth texture. I find that Splenda granules bake up more like real sugar than erythritol does.

Erythritol is a heavier sweetener by weight, and I believe this makes the brownie texture slightly more dense. But this could just be my own experience with it.

The recipe below is using erythritol, which gives the brownies a slightly different mouth feel; a bit more fudge-y.

Should you count Erythritol Net Carbs?: Personally I don’t count the sugar alcohols of erythritol into my net carb count, like some low carbers do. Erythritol has been shown not to spike insulin, and is not metabolized by our bodies, and even eating the entire cake doesn’t affect me.

But we are all individual snowflakes, so follow your bliss!

So if you choose not to count the erythritol carbs, that leaves the entire batch of brownies with 15g net carbs. That’s less than 2 grams net carbs per brownie!

However, in the nutrition info I have included total net carbs using erythritol, for those of you who count the sugar alcohol’s net carbs.


P.S- You can also bake these as a cake and enjoy the crispy corners! I prefer to bake these in one of those grocery store 7″-8″ cheap pie pans.

This is a picture of brownies baked in an 8 inch square tin seen on DebbyK website wwww.yourfitday.com
Melt In Your Mouth Brownies made with pumpkin

Alas, let’s get baking!

Note: If you prefer even more of a ‘melt-in-your-mouth’ experience and don’t mind using Splenda,  check out this chocolate ‘melt-in-your-mouth’ brownie recipe.

Low Carb Melt-In-Your Mouth Chocolate Brownie Bites
Prep time
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A low carb Paleo friendly brownie, with a slightly sticky and crispy top, that's light and airy inside, and melts in your mouth with every bite!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 8
  • 3 egg whites
  • 75gram canned pumpkin
  • 1 Tbsp coconut milk
  • 1 tsp liquid vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp water
  • 10 gram whey protein powder
  • 1 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 8 gram unsweetened cocoa powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp xantham gum (optional)
  • ¼ cup erythritol
  • ¼ tsp powdered stevia

  • What You'll Need:
  • Large Stainless Steel, Copper, or Glass mixing bowl
  • Medium size bowl
  • 2 small bowls
  • Rubber spatula
  • Mixer, either hand or stand
  • Sifter
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Lightly grease muffin tins with coconut oil
  3. In a medium size bowl, separate the egg whites and the yolks (best done when the eggs are still cold straight up from the fridge). Reserve the yolks for another use.
  4. Let egg whites rest at room temperature for about 20 minutes
  5. Grind ¼ cup erythritol in a coffee grinder.
  6. In a separate bowl, mix coconut flour, whey protein powder, baking powder, cocoa powder, salt, ¼ tsp powdered stevia and ½ of the powdered erythritol.
  7. Sift the dry ingredients.
  8. In another bowl, mix canned pumpkin with 1 Tbsp coconut milk, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1 Tbsp of water. Mixture should resemble thick gravy. Don't make it too watery. If the batter gets too watery, a quick remedy would be mix about 1-2 tsp of the sifted dry ingredients.
  9. By this time, the egg whites should be at a room temperature.
  10. Using a hand mixer with a whisk attachment, lightly beat egg whites until foamy.
  11. Lower the mixer speed, then put in ⅛ tsp cream of tartar. Increase the mixer speed and beat until soft peaks formed.
  12. Lower the mixer speed, then mix in the remaining powdered erythritol. Mix it slowly until everything incorporates so you won't have powdered erythritol flying around.
  13. Beat the egg whites until stiff peak formed.
  14. Pour in the pumpkin/coconut milk mixture and carefully fold into the egg whites. Please watch video on folding below:
  15. Once the batter is mixed, sift ¼ of the dry ingredients on`to the egg white. Carefully fold the dry ingredients into the egg whites mixture. Repeat this three more times, until you use up all the dry ingredients.
  16. Fill about 2.5 Tbsp batter into each muffin tin. The batter should fill about ½ of the muffin tin if you want to make them into 8 muffins.
  17. Bake in 350F for 45-50 minutes
  18. Remove from oven and let sit about 15 minutes before removing from muffin tins. They come out easier this way.
  19. Enjoy!
Take your time when folding all the ingredients into the egg whites. And make sure to break apart, very gently, any lumps or bubbles of dry mix that you see.

The best way to do this is by lifting the lumps onto your spatula and breaking them apart by tapping the spatula on the side of the bowl.

Using Splenda: I use ½ cup of the Splenda granules (not the baking Splenda or packets) and then powder that for the dry mix, and use ¼ cup for the egg whites.

Net Carbs: NOT Counting Erythritol, for Entire Batter: 15g
That's for the entire batter!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 8 Calories: 28 Fat: .6g Saturated fat: .3g Carbohydrates: 7.9g Sugar: .5g Sodium: 24 Fiber: .8g Protein: 3g

A big Thank You to Jos, over at Delightfultastebuds, for her exceptional photography skills and patience!

Low Carb Chocolate Protein Pudding

Chocolate pudding
Warm and creamy protein pudding, before being turned into ‘gelato’

Hello Your Fit Day Friends!

I’ve always loved rich creamy pudding type foods. They don’t even have to be deserts. I’ll make just about anything into a thick gloppy mush and eat it! This one just happens to a be creamy, sweet and chocolatey low carb chocolate protein pudding! And each serving has 6 grams of  protein. Great for a little afternoon protein boost.

I came up with this recipe because I had some extra room in the day for my fat and protein macros, and I was experimenting with making pudding. So I kind of just threw things together following a couple different recipes for pudding and lemon curd.

What’s not to like about a warm and creamy chocolate pudding. And what’s not to like about your pudding going a.k.a. as gelato, chocolate sauce, or a ganache for your cakes and muffins!

Well, this Chocolate Protein Pudding can be all that. It just depends on what type of self control you have the moment it comes off the stove!

And I’m not going to lie! I had to maintain a lot of self control not to spoon all of this goodness into my mouth instead of those little glass dishes. It was a challenge, let me tell you.

As I was pouring the pudding into the dishes I just happened to very intently swiped my finger through the stream of chocolate and touch the tip of my tongue with it, and suddenly my olfactory memories transported me back to my mother’s kitchen, baking chocolate chip cookies, and dissolving Hershey Kisses in my mouth.

And that’s exactly what this pudding tastes like (to me, anyway!). A bowl of melted Hershey Kisses.

And if you love Hershey Kisses you will definitely become addicted to this pudding. I’m not even a chocolate lover and I’m hooked!

It’s super quick and easy to make, and takes all of about 6 minutes from prep to fridge. (Of course you then have to wait for the pudding to firm up in the fridge!)

So go ahead and whip some of this goodness up. But I’m warning you now, you may not be able to wait the 20-30 minutes for it to firm up! Let me know how far you got…. 🙂

Alas, let’s get baking!

chocolate pudding in two glass jars

Chocolate Protein Pudding
Prep time
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Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 2
  1. Whisk an egg yolk and 1 Tbsp of coconut milk in a small dish.
  2. In another deep small bowl mix the 5 or 6 gr of a whey powder (about a tbsp), 8-10 grams of cocoa powder( about 2 tbsp), the stevia and erythritol mix ( or whatever sweetener pleases your fancy), a pinch of salt together. Whisk that all up!
  3. Then, with a rubber spatula, mix the egg yolk mixture into the cocoa mixture and blend it all up. It's hard not to lick the spoon and just eat that. But stop yourself so you can indulge in the real goodness that is to come!! If it's not sweet enough then sweeten to taste.
  4. Then, in a small saucepan heat 6 tbsp of coconut milk until just simmering and small bubbles appear on the sides.
  5. Remove from stove and begin tempering the chocolate with the milk by adding 1 tbsp of the milk into the cocoa mixture and mixing vigorously as you do that, combining it all, and then continue to do this tbsp by tbsp until it's all combined.
  6. Then, with the rubber spatula transfer that all back into the saucepan.
  7. Now here is where you need to be super vigilant! Reduce heat to low and put saucepan back on stove. But making sure to stir stir stir that cocoa mixture. It will seem like nothing is happening. But in 30 seconds to 1 minute it will start to thicken and you will see streaks of the pan on the bottom.
  8. Make sure to continue moving that spatula around the corners of the pan. At this 1 minute mark or slightly less you will see small curds start to form. Immediately lift the pan 4-6 inches off the stove top, but continue stirring the mixture around the pan getting in all areas as it thickens up.
  9. It may start looking dry on the edges and you don't want this, so lift the pan higher and make sure that the flame is low.
  10. Once those curds start forming at the beginning, when you first start to lift the pan off the stovetop, you only need to do that mixing for about 1.5 minutes. I used a timer at the beginning , but eventually you will know when to stop.
  11. So now, take the pan off the stove and place on counter. Add in 4 tsp of coconut oil or butter, TWO tsp at a time, and mix it all in before adding in the next 2 tsp. It will be nice and shiny and glossy. Take a whiff and sweeten to taste if necessary. It will smell and taste like a Hershey Kiss.
  12. Divide evenly into 2 small shallow dishes
  13. Place in refrigerator for 20-30 minutes or desired consistency is reached. I don't put plastic on top of the pudding, but if you care about a film that may form you may do so to prevent it.
  14. Or, eat warm from the dish or serve on top of some of my other delicious treats!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 Calories: 237.5 Fat: 23 Carbohydrates: 3.5 Fiber: 1 Protein: 6

Gluten Free Lemon Poppy Seed Pumpkin Muffins

Hi Your Fit Day Friends!

Well, spring is here in the Bay Area and the days are getting warmer and longer.

And with more warm weather comes sunshine. And as always, that means more lemons from my friend’s lemon tree. Actually, here in California we are blessed with lemons hanging all year round.

I love lemon-y anything!

So when life hands you lemons, what do you make?

Cakes, cookies, muffins and pies. That’s what!

And what goes with lemon? Poppies Poppy seeds, that’s what. And I love poppy seeds.

Those little crunchy poppy seeds with their bursts of nuttiness. There’s nothing like a sweet pastry, cake, cookie or dough laced and filled with poppies I mean poppy seeds!

I first developed this muffin a couple years ago, after my shoulder surgery, when I started using the Carnbite® Solution Plan, which I stayed on for about 1 1/2 years ( A little too long, but that’s another blog I’ll be following up with).

So it was during this time I was inspired to start baking more gluten free deserts for both me and my clients.

And I had a real yen for lemon poppy seed bread.

After many failed attempts, and a bunch of bricks, I finally came up with my own gluten free version for lemon poppy seed muffins, which are also delicious baked as small tea cakes.

I use Kabocha squash, also known as Japanese pumpkin, because of it’s rich creamy texture, and is my ‘go to’ substitute for fat in almost any baked good. But you can also use canned pumpkin, or another winter squash.

As you make more of my recipes, you’ll see that I use Kabocha in most of them. It’s super nutritious and packs a punch with vitamin A. It’s a bit starchy though, so a little goes a long way.

This muffin is by no means low carb, so it can be a great addition to your post workout protein to round out the meal.

But my favorite time to have this is for my desert after dinner, when I let those carbs coax me into a deep sleep, where I dream of…  poppies …I mean my next days challenge in the weight room!

Be careful though, as the Yum factor of this muffin is quite high, and you may find yourself stuffing your face with the whole bunch!

Let’s start baking!

Photo credits go to my good friend Jos at www.delightfultastebuds.com. Make sure to visit her site full of yumminess!

Gluten Free Lemon Poppy Seed Pumpkin Muffins
Prep time
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A quick and easy gluten free lemon poppy seed muffin made with kabocha pumpkin squash and rice flour
Recipe type: Desert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6
  • ½ cup white rice flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt (I used fine sea salt)
  • 3 tbs sweet potato starch or potato starch. You can buy sweet potato powder(starch) at local Asian market or maybe on Amazon
  • 10 gram whey isolate (i use zero carb raw pastured from Z-natural)
  • ½ cup baked kabocha (Japanese pumpkin)squash that is pressed into the ½ cup measure cup. You can also use butternut or acorn squash. Canned pumpkin is an option too if you don’t have any winter squash.
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 3 tbs lemon Juice
  • 2 tbs water or almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ Stevia, or to taste. Or ½ cup erythritol (I've also used about ½ cup granular Splenda )
  • 1-2 tbsp poppy seeds. Macros are for 1 tbsp
  1. Mix dry together in small bowl, except sweetener and poppy seeds
  2. In medium bowl , using hand mixer, blend together wet ingredients and sweetener.
  3. Add dry to wet and mix with spoon until smooth and everything is incorporated
  4. Fold in poppy seeds
  5. Using approximately ¼ cup measure, divide batter into 6 silicon baking cups, or 6 paper lined muffin tins (note that rice flour baked goods will stick to the sides of paper liners and make it hard to peel off); or divide into TWO 3” non stick ramekins (or lightly oiled non stick ceramic ramekins)
  6. It should make 6 muffins. I think the last muffin was short so I took like ½ tsp out of others to even it out
  7. Bake 365 for 30-40 minutes depending on if you’re using small muffin cups or 2 larger ramekins. Smaller muffins check at about 25 minutes. Mine usually take about 35 minutes, but it depends on if my oven is running on the cooler side.
  8. Tops should be brown.
  9. Test a muffin by slicing out a small portion. If the center is still a bit gooey put back in oven for another 5-8 minutes. The toothpick test may not necessarily work with this muffin
  10. Cool muffins for 5 minutes before removing from cups
  11. These are amazing with coconut oil, coconut butter, or even a blueberry compote drizzled on top!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 6 Fat: 2 Carbohydrates: 27 Protein: 2

How nice these would be with a some of my homemade lemon coconut butter spread!
How nice these would be with a some of my homemade lemon coconut butter spread!


Gluten free lemon poppy seed muffins
Lemon and Poppy Seeds…Yum! Photo: Jos www.delightfultastebuds.com





Low Carb Melt-In-Your-Mouth Chocolate Brownie Cake

Top view of brownie slices on platesHi Your Fit Day Friends!

As I sit here on my ball, writing my post, the scent of chocolate is wafting it’s way throughout my apartment and under my nose. This is causing quite a stir. With me anyway, since I’m the only one here, and I know how amazingly good this low carb melt-in-your-mouth chocolate brownie cake is!

And I can almost guarantee that you will soon add these chocolate melt-in-your-mouth brownies to your list of ‘go to’ and ‘must haves’!

Now, for those of you who know me, or who’ve clicked around on my blog, here, and here, you know that I’ve been sugar, and processed-foods free for the past 26 years.

But that doesn’t stop me from indulging in a bit of decadence-low carb style. And that’s just how my low carb melt-in-your-mouth chocolate brownies make you feel: like you’re diving into a box of Swiss chocolates!!

They’re super chocolatey, with a slightly sticky, merengue-like top. And, they have crisp sides, which has always been my favorite part of a brownie.

Ahhhhh…and when you sink your teeth into one…it’s so light and airy… and just melts in your mouth.

low carb melt-in-your-mouth chocolate brownie cake
They will melt in your mouth after each bite!

OK! Well, I don’t want to make you wait any longer…so here’s what to do:

Make the kabocha squash mixture and set aside.

Pureed kabocha pumpkin in white bowl
Creamy Kabocha squash mixture should be like a thick gravy or sour cream consistency.

Sift together dry ingredients following recipe directions, and set aside.

cocoa powder and coconut flour dry mix in bowl

Beat eggs until frothy, and then add in the cream of tarter,


Beat until soft peaks form,


and then add in the sweetener of choice (see notes in recipe), a little at a time, and continue beating until stiff peaks form

Egg whites beaten to stiff peaks
Beat egg whites just until stiff peaks form

And then add the kabocha mixture gently on top, and spread around a bit, making sure not to break the whites.

Kabocha squash mixture sitting on top of egg whites in metal bowl
Kabocha mixture should sit on top of egg whites

Then fold the mixture gently into the egg whites. (You can watch the video on folding here)

Kabocha partially folded into stiff egg whites.
Slowly fold kabocha squash mixture into beaten egg whites

Until they look like this

orange colored stiff egg whites in metal bowl
Folded to perfection with lots of volume

Then, take 1/4 of the dry mixture and sift it over the egg whites. Then fold this into the egg whites gently. Repeat this step three more times. It will eventually look smooth and creamy like this.

Picture of chocolate batter
The dry mixture has been nicely folded into the kabocha/egg white mixture. Make sure that all the large and small clumps have been bursted and incorporated

You’re almost done!

Now pour this lusciousness into the prepared tin.

Chocolate batter in round baking tin
Tap the pan on the counter to take out all the air bubbles. Look how nice and smooth the batter is!

And bake, following the directions below, until it looks like this.

Baked brownies in round pan on counter
Waiting to be cut and plated for some eating pleasure!

Or if you are a square, like this!

baked brownies in square pan

(Personally, I prefer to bake these in one of those grocery store 7″-8″ cheap pie pans because the bottom and edges come out super crispy).

Let cool without going nuts (Oh, you can fold those into the batter at the end if you want!)

Slice and plate them up, like this, if you want!

Side view of sliced brownies on plates with glass of milk

Or this…

Brownie slices on plate with glass of milk
They will melt in your mouth after each bite!

Or this…

Triangle slices of brownies on plate in star shape with glass of milk
Almost too pretty to eat…NOT!

Honestly, I couldn’t wait this long with my first batch. They were gone, baby, gone!

Really, whichever way you choose to bake these, it’s like eating milk chocolate truffles (that recipe’s coming soon!).

Ha! I should have called it my milk chocolate truffle cake!

Alas, let’s get baking!

All photos credited to Jos. Be sure to check out all her yummy recipes, too!

Low Carb Melt-In-Your-Mouth Chocolate Kabocha Brownie Cake
Prep time
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Total time
A chocolate chiffon-like brownie cake that melts in your mouth with every bite!
Recipe type: Dessert/Meal
Cuisine: Paleo/Primal
Serves: 8
  • 3 egg whites
  • 75gr baked kabocha
  • 1 Tbsp coconut milk
  • 1 tsp liquid vanilla extract
  • 5-6 Tbsp water (this really depends on how watery or starchy your kabocha squash is. Add 1 Tbsp each time until you got that thick gravy/sour cream consistency
  • 10 gram whey protein powder
  • 1 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 8 gram unsweetened cocoa powder
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp xantham gum (optional)
  • ½ cup powdered Splenda
  • ¼ cup granulated Splenda

  • What You'll Need:
  • Large Stainless Steel, Copper, or Glass mixing bowl
  • Medium size bowl
  • 2 small bowls
  • Rubber spatula
  • Mixer, either hand or stand
  • Sifter
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Lightly grease 7-8 inch tin with coconut oil
  3. In a medium size bowl, separate the egg whites and the yolks (best done when the eggs are still cold straight up from the fridge). Reserve the yolks for another use.
  4. Grind ½ cup granulated Splenda in a coffee grinder until it becomes powdered
  5. In a separate bowl, mix coconut flour, whey protein powder, baking powder, powdered Splenda, cocoa powder, and salt.
  6. Sift the dry ingredients.
  7. In another bowl, mix mashed baked kabocha with 1 Tbsp coconut milk, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1 Tbsp of water. Mixture should resemble thick gravy. Don't make it too watery. If the batter gets too watery, a quick remedy would be mix about 1-2 tsp of the sifted dry ingredients.
  8. By this time, the egg whites should be at a room temperature.
  9. Using a hand mixer with a whisk attachment, lightly beat egg whites until foamy.
  10. Lower the mixer speed, then put in ⅛ tsp cream of tartar. Increase the mixer speed and beat until soft peaks formed.
  11. Lower the mixer speed, then mix in ¼ cup granulated Splenda. Mix it slowly until everything incorporates so you won't have the Splenda flying around.
  12. Beat the egg whites until stiff peak formed.
  13. Pour in the kabocha/coconut milk mixture and carefully fold into the egg whites. Please watch video on folding below:
  14. Once the batter is mixed, sift ¼ of the dry ingredients on`to the egg white. Carefully fold the dry ingredients into the egg whites mixture. Repeat this three more times, until you use up all the dry ingredients.
  15. Fill your 7-8 inch tin with the batter.
  16. Bake in 350F for 45-50 minutes
  17. Remove from oven and let sit about 15 minutes before removing from the tin. They come out easier this way.
  18. Slice and enjoy!
Take your time when folding all the ingredients into the egg whites. And make sure to break apart, very gently, any lumps or bubbles of dry mix that you see.

The best way to do this is by lifting the lumps onto your spatula and breaking them apart by tapping the spatula on the side of the bowl.

Using Splenda: I use ½ cup of the Splenda granules (not the baking Splenda or packets) and then powder that for the dry mix, and use ¼ cup for the egg whites.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 8 Calories: 28 Fat: 1 Saturated fat: 0 Carbohydrates: 5 Sugar: 1 Sodium: 24 Fiber: 1 Protein: 3

Lemon Curd

Hello Your Fit Day readers!

This is Jos and I’d like to thank Debby for having me doing a guest post on her blog.

Single serve Lemon Curd by Jos

I’m sure you’re all still remember her delicious Low Carb Melt-In-Your-Mouth Lemon ‘Chiffon’ Poppy Seed Cake? If you haven’t made it yet, go shop for the ingredients and make them pronto!

When Debby shared her recipe to me, I couldn’t wait to try them out and it has become one of my staple low carb treats whenever I need a sweet-tooth fix. FYI, in general, I am not a sweet tooth person but once in a while, that thing kicks in.


I enjoyed her Low Carb Melt-In-Your-Mouth Lemon ‘Chiffon’ Poppy Seed Cake (in these photos, I made them in muffin tins). When she posted her recipe, she told me that the cake will go very well with my Lemon Curd, which I posted on my blog here.


Since her recipe yields extra 2 egg yolks, I am thinking instead of having you figuring out how to scale down my original Lemon Curd recipe, might as well I do it for you, right?

Anyway let’s proceed with the recipe, shall we?

Single Serve Lemon Curd
A yummy dairy-free lemon curd. Perfect companion for Low Carb Melt-In-Your-Mouth Lemon ‘Chiffon’ Poppy Seed Cake.
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 1
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 Tablespoon full fat coconut milk
  • 1 Tablespoon erythritol
  • ½ tsp liquid SweetLeaf Vanilla Stevia
  • 1-2 tsp lemon juice (if you like it tart)
  • 1 tsp liquid lemon extract
  • ½ tsp lemon zest (optional)
  1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl and heat on a double boiler on medium heat. Stir constantly. If you don't have a double boiler like me, you could place the bowl on top of a sauce pan filled with water. Just make sure the bowl isn't touching the water.
  2. Mix until the mixture thickens but be careful not getting it too hot or you'll end up with scramble egg yolks. (usually takes about 7 minutes at least).
  3. Once the mixture thickens, remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature.
  4. Cover the curd with plastic wrap directly to prevent skin forming. Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
  5. Enjoy with Debby's Low Carb Melt-In-Your-Mouth Lemon ‘Chiffon’ Poppy Seed Cake!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Calories: 133 Fat: 11 Carbohydrates: 2 Protein: 6

So, what are you still waiting for?


Gluten-Free Rice Flour Pumpkin Skillet Biscuits

Crisp  on the outside...sweet and creamy like porridge on the inside.
Crisp on the outside…sweet and creamy on the inside.

Hello Your Fit Day Friends!

I want to let you in on a secret. Carbs are not evil. Really. They’re not. And neither are my Gluten-free Rice Flour Pumpkin Skillet Biscuits. Trust me on this one! It’s more about which carbs you choose, how you cycle them into your diet, and how to make them work for you.

If you haven’t read my last post, where I talk about why I’m using the Carbnite® Solution Plan, stop and click here first. That should explain it all. Well, a lot anyway.

Now, I’m all about helping you stay lean and fit, so some of the best times to indulge in my starchy treats would be:

  1. After a weight training session, preferably in the evening.
  2. When you’re on a Low Carb High Fat ‘diet’, where a re-feed of starches will help boost your metabolism. (Low Carb diets are typically low calorie, due to the satiating effects of fat. You are eating more fat, aren’t you?!!)
  3. Anytime,  because you really don’t care about all this carb timing stuff; you’re here mostly for the yummy gluten-free and sugar-free recipes, high carb or low carb; and because you want to impress someone with your gluten-free, sugar-free baking skills instead of serving them bricks. I know, I’ve had my share of them too!

So, I’ve decided to travel outside the box of my post-workout-world staples of straight-up sweet potatoes and kabocha squash, and get creative in the kitchen. And I’ll be delivering them to you one bite at a time, all gluten-free and sugar-free!

First, I thought I’d give my hand a try at making some biscuits. You know, those light, fluffy, flaky shortcakes, that catapult you into a state of carb-coma euphoria.

But when I was searching the web for “gluten free rice flour biscuits” I hit a stumbling block: I could only find super high-fat and sugar laden recipes, most of which included slow carb flours from grains and legumes. Not exactly what we’re looking for post-workout, or for a program like Carbnite®, which you read about here.

So after some searching and tweaking of recipes, I think I came up with a pretty good gluten-free, sugar-free, low fat biscuit. Sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it?

Ah ha! But it’s not! And to prove it, below is my modified version of a skillet biscuit I found over at The Daily Diatribe. I replaced most of the fat, and all of the applesauce (fructose), with Japanese pumpkin (Kabocha squash); and I used stevia instead as the sweetener, instead of the maple syrup.

You could use any type of dense starchy winter squash if you don’t have Japanese Kabocha pumpkins. Or you could use canned pumpkin. However, I can’t vouch for the canned pumpkin because I haven’t tried it yet. But I’m sure it would work. Although, I wouldn’t add any extra water to make a mash, since canned pumpkin is already the right consistency. If you do try it please let me know how they turn out in the comments below.

Mind you my version didn’t end up exactly light and fluffy, like regular biscuits.  Instead they are a bit flatter, crispy on the outside, with a creamy and sweet, baked porridge-like texture on the inside; and very carb-coma worthy!

I also saved out two 1/4 cup portions of the batter and baked them at 400 degrees F for about 30 minutes until the tops were a deep golden brown. They save you a bit of fat and I think they are just as crunchy and creamy and delicious.

I find both ways rather addicting.

For some extra added comfort I drizzled a few swirls of my homemade lemon-blueberry compote on top…Divine! (Recipe coming soon)

Some Variations to try:

Bacon Skillet Biscuit (I have not tried this as of yet, but I imagined it to be yummy?): Cook 4 strips of bacon until crisp. Cut each slice in half, so that you have eight pieces.  Crumble each 1/2 strip.  Gently press each 1/2 crumbled strip into each 1/4 cup of scooped batter before ladling onto skillet. Cook per directions.

Blueberry Skillet Biscuit (I have tried this and it is yummy!): Wash and pat dry 8 oz of organic blueberries. Divide into eight separate one ounce servings. Dust each ounce serving with rice flour. Add one ounce of blueberries to each 1/4 cup of scooped batter. Cook per directions.

Chocolate chip variation (I have not tried this yet, but chocolate with everything, including bacon, is yummy!): Measure out eight 1 oz servings of gluten free dark chocolate chips. Add one ounce of chips to each 1/4 cup of scooped batter. Cook per directions.

Savory Chive and Herb (I have tried this with my Ultra Low Carb biscuits-recipe coming soon-and they are Yum Yummy!): For savory biscuits you can fold in some fresh chives, or your favorite blend of fresh or dried herbs, to the mixed batter. Cook per directions

I hope you like them as much as I do. Please let me know in your comments below.

And don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter, in the above right hand corner, so you don’t miss out on the fun!

Biscuits that melt in your mouth
Biscuits that melt in your mouth…drool!
Gluten Free Rice Flour Pumpkin Skillet Biscuit
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A sweet and savory biscuit with a hint of vanilla. Lightly cooked in coconut oil on your skillet makes for a crisp savory crust with a sweet creamy inside, similar to a thick griddle cake. You can also try baking these biscuits too.
Recipe type: Appetiser
Cuisine: Gluten Free
Serves: 8
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk (I used Whole Foods 365 Almond milk unsweetened)
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1⅓ cups white rice flour (not sweet white rice flour or brown rice flour)
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • 4 tablespoons sweet potato mash (4 tbsp baked kabocha squash* with 1-3 tbsp of water to make puree the consistency of applesauce. This is important. This will depend on the moisture content of your winter squash. You will end up with slightly more puree than 4 tbsp. I usually add it all since it's just a little bit more)
  • ¼-1 tsp liquid stevia, to taste. Start with small amount as it's very potent.
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • * You can also use winter squash such as acorn, butternut.
  • * You can also use canned pumpkin, but you don’t need to add any extra liquid to make it a puree, since it's already the right consistency.
  1. Stir together the milk and apple cider vinegar and set aside to curdle. Begin heating a skillet on medium to allow it to get nice and hot.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.
  3. Add the oil, kabocha mash puree and vanilla to the milk and stir.(If making savory biscuits then omit vanilla and instead add your favorite spices, maybe onion powder, garlic, red pepper flakes, to flour mixture). These are still savory-sweet, if you stick to original recipe.
  4. Make a well in the center of your dry ingredients, pour in the wet ingredients, and stir together just until completely mixed.
  5. Add oil to your skillet(I just coat the pan), then scoop the batter into the skillet, using a ¼ measuring cup per biscuit. Try and shape the biscuits so they are high when you scoop them out of the measuring cup. (Actually, I whacked the pan to get them out; or you can be more civilized and use a spoon).
  6. Cook for 4 minutes, then flip. Immediately cover the skillet with it's lid (or find something to cover it with) and cook for another 4 minutes.
  7. I didn't have a top so mine were a bit flat, but they still puffed up.
  8. Remove from skillet and let cool about 5 minutes before serving.
  9. If they are not crispy for your liking, or you prefer the centers to be a bit more baked, you can put them into an oven at 350 for a few minutes to crisp them up.
  10. Best eaten warm.
You can also bake the biscuits in a pre heated 400 degree F oven for about 30 minutes, or until the tops are a deep golden brown. I kept biting into mine to see if they were done. After about 30 minutes of taste testing, and not much biscuit left, I proclaimed them to be delicious!

These freeze well in a zip lock bag. To reheat simply thaw and bake for about 5-8 minutes in a 300 degree oven or until crispy and crunchy again.

Nutrition Info for the Variations
Per Biscuit

Bacon: Fat:8.5grams; Protein: 6.5grams ; Carbs same as original

Blueberry: Carbs:29grams ; Fat and Protein same as original

Chocolate Chips(Enjoy Life Brand): Fat:13 grams ; Carbs:41grams ; Protein:5
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 8 Fat: 4 Carbohydrates: 23 Protein: 2
Crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside!
Crunchy on the outside, creamy on the inside!


Why I’m using the Carbnite® Solution Plan

9 Weeks Post Shoulder Surgery July 2012
9 Weeks Post Shoulder Surgery July 2012

Hello Your Fit Day Friends!

I know, it’s been a long time since I’ve updated my blog. Yes, I’m a bit of a procrastinator when it comes to blogging. But I have been working on this post now for a few months. Let me explain…

For those of you who are on my newsletter list you’ve already been updated weekly about what’s going on. For those of you who are now just joining us here at Your Fit Day, the news is that I had shoulder surgery May 10, 2012, seven months after my hips surgery, which was in October of 2011. I apologize for the gap, but life really got in the way of my life, not to mention blogging. But now that things are settling down I’m back. Yippee!

My body went through a lot of changes during both of these surgeries, especially right after the second one, my shoulder surgery. I lost a lot of muscle on the second surgery, the one for my shoulder. I did the best I could to maintain my fitness, but because I was so close in months post hip surgery to having major shoulder surgery on the opposite side of my body, I was quite limited in what I could do.

So here’s the update on what helped keep my metabolism humming as best as it could after my shoulder surgery, and my body from atrophying as little as possible.

Why The Carbnite®Solution Protocol

Almost a year and a half ago, and about two months into my recovery from my shoulder surgery, I started a cyclic ketogenic diet, using John Kiefer’s Carbnite®Solution as a way to help regulate my metabolism and carb intake ( which I tend not to take in when I’m not training). And I believed that using a cyclic ketogenic diet would help me through my recovery from recent shoulder surgery while not training. I wasn’t unfamiliar with Kiefer’s book, as I’ve referred and coached many friends and clients through it over the years since the book first came out.

I like Carbnite® Solution because it has many similarities to some of the low carb and carb cycling protocols that I have used over the past two decades to maintain my lean fit body, as well as getting in shape for fitness competitions, events, and photo shoots. And also because Kiefer’s book is educational and explains well why you don’t want to go very low-carb for too long, and that eating fat is OK.

Yes!! I get to eat schmaltz!

Now, maybe I’m just a wee bit biased because several years back, when Kiefer lived in Oakland, CA, he helped me a great deal with my nutritional programming when I was doing a lot of endurance training along with my strength training. He was very generous with his information and gave me great advice…that worked.

But that aside, Kiefer is highly regarded as a fat loss expert, you can always count on him to present a ton of research to back up his programs and articles, and in my opinion he’s not the type of guy to shove a piece of schlock on the shelf.  I’d say he’s on my list of to be trusted fitness authors!

My Past 25 Year Diet Overview

I’ve only been following a strict Carbnite® Solution protocol and ketogenic diet for about one and a half years now. Before this, and roughly for the past 25 years, the bulk of my meals were predominantly lean protein like tuna and turkey, deep cold water fishes, and vegetables.

I remained pretty low in fat (except what you would find in fatty fish), with small amounts of carbs cycled around my training times; sometime before, sometimes after, sometimes both.

And there were periods where I was even very low starchy carbs, relying mostly on veggies for carbs. I’ll admit, those were times I should have been eating a bit more starchy carbs with all the training I was doing.

About The Fat

It wasn’t until about four years ago that I even started cooking with added fats, instead of just using a non-stick pan.. My option was is coconut oil. The higher fat protocols were always very interesting to me, but being a child of the 80’s and 90’s I was part of the ‘low fat to no fat’ frenzy! This obviously changed as I learned more about keto diets.

I was also red-meat free up until about one and a half years ago (save for bison and buffalo when I could afford it, and the venison that my friend gave me during hunting season, which was seldom!). That’s when I added grass fed and pastured ground beef and lamb back into my diet, after abstaining for 35 years!! I can’t believe what I was missing!!

Slow roasted salmon collar and skin. Pure Omega 3's! Photo by Jos (Delightfultastebuds.com)
Slow roasted salmon collar and skin. Pure Omega 3’s! Photo by Jos (Delightfultastebuds.com)

You could say that before adding red meat back into my diet I was mainly a ‘tur-pescatarian’ ( That’s my made up name for a turkey/fish eater!). But I enjoyed mostly the fattier fishes, like sea bass (back then it was not yet on the endangered list and only $1/lb for the chowder fish), turbo, and fresh wild albacore; and especially the collars, skins, bellies and remnants of halibut (I now include salmon bellies, skins and collars).

Come to think of it, fat was pretty much seasonal for me. When the halibut were jumping, which was about six months of the year, I’d venture to guess that my diet was very high in natural fat from all of the pure fish oils that were in the skins, bellies, collars, and cartilage that I ate during the week.

Halibut collars
Halibut collars fresh from the fish monger! I would literally eat the entire collar…YUM!
Photo by Jos (Delightfultastebuds.com)

I mean, literally, I’d eat the sweet bubbling succulent fat that oozed from just under the fatty crispy skins, and spoon up the savory sizzling oil right from the oven skillet! I even ate eat the bones of the halibut and salmon too. I left leave nothing! I was like am a coastal cave woman! This is how I still love to eat.

Pump It Up

Now, back in the late 80’s and into the mid 90’s, I did the super-low-fat bodybuilding lifestyle of oatmeal, cream of rice, my veggie egg white omelets, (which I still love and eat) as well as eating five smallish meals a day. Yes! You know that diet I’m talking about!

Maybe it had something to do with the myth that eating more meals meant a machisma metabolism. But for me, having had disordered eating for a short period in my life, it was easier to wrap my head around smaller meals throughout the day, rather than eating larger ones more spread out. To me they were baby steps. And besides, it gave me back my power to be able to just eat, without stress, knowing it was building my body back up!

And I stuck with this low fat, multiple meal plan for many years, thinking low-to-no added fat, and many many meals, was the way to go. I’m not going to knock it, because I liked how I looked, felt and performed while I was training for bodybuilding, fitness competitions and endurance events.

And it was over the next several years, during the training for these events, that I learned more about how to use carbs for performance.

Cycling My Carbs

Although I eventually gave up sugar in the late 1980’s and early ’90’s, and cut down my overall carb consumption, I of course didn’t give up carbs completely while I was training, which was always pretty hard. I just limited carbs, in the right amounts, around my training, to make sure I had energy, my glycogen was replenished, and/or to prepare me for the next days training.

And if you know me, you also know that I’ve always trained with the intensity and volume of a Super HER-O Human!  (Well, up until my two surgeries, anyway). So, I needed carbs in my diet while I was working out hard. Remember, I was not keto adapted back then.

Note: When I’m talking about cycling carbs I’m talking about starchy carbs, not veggie carbs.

In fact, when I was about 16 weeks pre-contest in body building, and in my cutting phase, it was a very common practice for me to Zig Zag my diet and go five days lower/moderate calories and carbs, with the fifth or sixth day being a ‘cheat’ day eating anything I wanted (I still limited my choices to wholesome foods and didn’t go bananas, but I ate bananas!).

It was great for me mentally and socially, I never felt like I needed to binge, and I looked forward to it every week. I even made the day into a breakfast club, where each week my friends and I would choose a different breakfast spot in Berkeley to explore.

My favorite meal was a big, 1/2 inch thick multi grain pancake with smashed bananas on top, followed by non fat (usually sugar free) frozen yogurt in the evening! However, now that I’m learning more about the hormonal responses to food (which I’ll be writing about more later) I realize that there were years in my training that I probably could have cycled even more carbs, and fats, into my diet.

My Sugar Addiction Was Real And So Was My Cellulite!

But to be honest, ever since giving up sugar 25 years ago, after competing in my first body building show (I came in at 10.5% body fat), up until doing the Carbnite® Solution Plan, I’d had a fear of starchy carbs and sugar. And with good reason: because carbs and sugar can be addictive.

I know this personally, because I had a sugar (as in gum-balls) addiction from age 16-26 (I’ll be blogging about this in the future). Once I started eating them I couldn’t stop. And I’d buy bags full.

I was like Pavlov’s dog. Just the thought of going to the market made me plan out my route and do ‘drive-buys’ for binges. Drooling all the way! Just the thought of biting into that crunchy crust of sugar-coated gum made me salivate and run for that nearest gumball bin. As a result I carried a lot of extra belly and lower body fat during the periods when I ate them.

But here’s the thing: When I would give up the gum balls for a period of 3-4 weeks I would notice that the fat melted away like magic. After several trials of this new behavior I realized processed sugar was the culprit in making me fat and squishy. Because those were the only processed sugars I was eating by that time; besides the measured carbs I was using for recovery.

So after my first competition in the late 80’s, I gave up sugar for good, while continuing to limit my starchy carbs around my training. And I stayed naturally very lean and muscular as a result, with just enough fat in all the right places!

Sugar also made me quite lethargic and very emotionally depressed, which was another motivation for giving it up. I’m so glad I’m free of that addiction. But that’s another blog altogether!

In a nutshell, sugar and starchy carbs can make you fat if used incorrectly, and/or eaten in abundance at the wrong times, not to mention all the other unhealthy things it can do to your body.

And for us girls too many carbs and too much sugar (and well, just too many extra calories) can pack on cellulite…like it did with with me, on the back of my legs. Most of us girls struggle with that, and who needs anymore struggles! I didn’t, and I knew what the culprit was.

In fact, after finally giving up all processed sugar back in the late 80’s, and early 90’s after my first body building show, (it took me a couple years to really ‘get off’ sugar; and yes, I’m dating myself), and limiting carbs to support only my hard training days, I slowly got rid of all the fat on the back of my legs. Honestly it took many years of persistence, dedication and hard training so see it finally go away for good.

Deb's 8-pack Abs circa 1990
This is what cycling carbs will get you! This was my ‘5 days on, one day off ‘ ‘cheat’ meal plan. One inch thick pancakes were my friend!

And as for the washboard on my stomach (which I’m lacking now after my shoulder surgery recovery), well, let’s just say people began to drop their laundry off on my doorstep!  I transformed my legs from dimpled to dazzling, and became a human washing machine to boot.

It was a lot of hard work, which included hard training sessions in the weight room, in the pool and on the track; while being mindful of how much I put in my mouth; and especially only eating carbs to suit my activity levels. So since then I’ve used carbs only to support my training. And I’m still sugar and processed-foods free.

But trust me…Nothing stays the same forever!! I had great success cycling my carbs strategically for many many years. But after back to back hip and shoulder surgeries, when I could no longer train like I had before, I needed to make some tweaks to my program.  And that’s why I decided to test out The Carbnite® Solution for a while and switch over to a ketogenic diet.

Are you still stuck on my weird gum ball addiction?!

Keeping The Fires Stoked

So, after my shoulder surgery in May 2012, and because my lack of training didn’t support eating carbs while recovering from surgery, I needed a program that would keep my metabolism humming, and not tank, while staying ultra low carb (ULC). As I’ll explain below, The Carbnite® Solution Plan would help me to do that. And… I thought it would be fun to use Carbnite® Solution along with my clients! Talk about support!!!

Last night I ate cookies, cakes and pies-all homemade and gluten free of course! I'm 4 months post shoulder surgery on the Carbnite® Solution Plan
Last night I ate cookies, cakes and pies-all homemade and gluten free of course! I’m 4 months post shoulder surgery on the Carbnite® Solution Plan

So instead of falling into a completely carb free eating plan post surgery, I found that doing the Carbnite® Solution plan seriously while rehabbing my shoulder, and while I wasn’t training with intensity or volume after surgery, would be a good way to put carbs back into an ultra low carb lifestyle; and keep my leptin levels and other hormones working in concert for optimum fat burning and muscle maintenance.

After my hip surgery(and here is Day 5 Post Op)it wasn’t such a problem since I could train my upper body, and do hard pool workouts, and utilize the starchy carbs to support my training. But without ‘training’ for several months post shoulder surgery, and knowing that I would be low carb, I knew that I would have to force myself to eat carbs so that my metabolism wouldn’t shut down. And at my age you have to do everything you can to help your metabolism along. I’m certainly not going to give up just because I had two surgeries!!

You see after staying super low carbs, even for as little as 7-14 days, your leptin levels (leptin is a hormone that helps regulate the thyroid so our metabolism stays on an even keel) start to decrease.  I’m not going to go into the science of how this works here, but if you are at all interested in making your body a fat burning machine I highly recommend the book , and to read Kiefer’s article about leptin here.

Here’s my Haiku:

“On Carbs”

Go long time with no,

Makes metabolism slow.

Eat carbs, now not low. -DebbyK

DebbyK’s Abridged Edition for Carbnite® Solution:

After an orientation period of 9 1/2 days of eating Ultra Low Carb (ULC) of only protein, fat, and less than 30 grams of net carbs consisting of mostly fibrous veggies, (the purpose of which is to get your body into a ketogenic state so it adapts to using it’s stored fat for fuel; and to shut off an enzyme that potentially turns carbs into fat), on the evening of the 10th day you spike your insulin levels super high by eating high glycemic, insulin spiking, low-fiber carbs. The following day you’re back to the ULC part of the plan for another 6 1/2 days, with your next night of carb loading and insulin spiking on the evening of the 7th day. Now, rinse and repeat, typically every 5-7 days, depending.

Actually you want that spike higher than high. And it’s not just about one little dessert and BOOM! your done for the evening. And thank god, because that would be such a tease! Not to mention it would ruin the whole shebang.

No, instead it’s this lovely window of 6-8 hours (women may do better with the shorter period) in which you keep your insulin levels spiked by eating some of your favorite high glycemic foods. Yup! Eat, rest, rinse and repeat, about every two hours, starting this party at around 4 PM.

Get it? Carb ‘NIGHT’ !

According to Kiefer it only takes your body 6-8 hours of re-feeding it carbs to re-set your fat burning hormones and jump start your metabolism. Actually when you do this your body becomes a fat burning machine. Who knew!!

Now, even though this is a high insulin spiking re-feed, I still maintain a gluten- free, sugar-free, processed foods free-zone in my home (I’m a poet!). I like to describe my eating and lifestyle as ‘my own whole foods living with a primal flair. I try to eat in-season, fresh, whole foods that also have healing properties. Basically if it falls too far from the tree I don’t eat it! Although I admit it: I do use some Splenda  (which I’m slowly cutting out). Please don’t throw pebbles at me!

Some Cautions on Carbnite® Solution

If you plan to use Carbnite Solution, some things you’ll want to avoid in extreme quantities on this night of treats are table sugar and fat. And the timing of these two are very important; sugar in the first part of the night, and fat more towards the end.

This is because fat, eaten with high insulin spiking carbs, can potentially be stored as fat if eaten too early in the night, due to fat’s slow digestion time. So I limit the fat I eat on my treat night, and have it at the end of the evening, during the last hour or so.

And why not a lot of sugar? Well, for one, sugar is 50% fructose, and, as directly stated by Kiefer on his You Tube Video, “fructose, when you’re in an energy surplus, can be stored directly as fat”. Yuck! We don’t want that!!

Well, I just avoid sugar anyway since I’ve been committed to a life without refined sugar for the past 26 years and I don’t want it or crave it; and I limit fruit, since my body doesn’t react well to fructose anyway. So if you want to sweeten the pot, use dextrose as your main sweetener.

But, I love my bananas and berries as much as any Yogi Bear, so if Ido want fruit on my ‘Night Of Treats’ I have it, but limit it to small amounts, and try to have it early on in the evening when my depleted liver can use it. But since this is a night meant to enjoy yourself, if you want to have a french pastry, or some pancakes drizzled with maple syrup, by all means indulge yourself!!

Another NOTE: Carbnite® Solution is marketed as a ‘power diet’ for fat loss. My intention for using this program was NOT to lose fat. It was primarily to have a structure that I could follow while maintaining my low carb lifestyle to (a) keep my fat burning hormones in check, and (b) use a ketogenic diet to help optimize my body ability to  maintain it’s muscle while recovering.

In fact, my goal since my last surgery has been to increase my weight and gain some of the muscle back that I lost. I have done both. In the last few months, however, as I’ve increased my calories, I have also gained some fat. My non-scientific speculation is that this is some sort of evolutionary protection from being so lean pre and post surgeries, while also going through two traumas so close together.

However, I do believe that I may be going through some hormonal changes as a result of the trauma, as well as age related hormonal changes, which may also affect the distribution and accumulation of fat. Does this concern me? Yes, a little bit. I’ll be honest I loved my six pack.

Well, I may only have a two-pack now, but I’ve packed some size back onto my booty and I’m happy about that!

My Plan

I’m not sure how long I’ll stay on the Carbnite® Solution. As of late fall of 2013 I’m feeling strong and I’ve started to train heavier again with my legs, glutes, and back. Plus, I’m back in the pool now after my shoulder surgery, and I’m starting to crank it up there too! So, I think I’m ready to start cycling some carbs back into my diet based on my workout schedule. Plus, I just like the look and feel of my muscles better when they are filled with glycogen throughout the week.

For that, I plan on going back to cycling more carbs around my workouts, the way I used to do when I was training with more volume, while maintaining the ultra low carb portion of the day.

I also plan on incorporating the latest research and fat loss principals that I’ve learned from Carb Backloading® into my program (see sidebar and click on that picture of those 6 pack abs!), as well as any new protocols in the field of nutrition, fat loss and metabolism that may give women approaching menopause a better arsenal for a healthy fight against fat. Whatever I decide, I’ll be sure to let you know…

As a fat loss coach I’ve added the Carbnite® Solution and backloading protocols into my toolbox, along with  my other low carb/cyclic ketogenic and whole foods lifestyle plans. And my clients who are using these protocols are getting great results. Just take a look at my client Jos.

Gluten Free Rice Four Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins and Cakes
Gluten Free Rice Four Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins and Cakes

Plus, they’re having so much fun, which is key to any successful program.  I mean what’s not to like: rice puddings, porridges, pies and poppy seed cakes one night a week!

And succulent savory ultra low carb meals, like slow cooked brisket, with pan roasted, caramelized red bells and brussel sprouts the rest of the week!

In fact, I’m having tons of fun creating gluten free recipes to use for those who indulge in the low and ultra low-carb lifestyle, as well as for those times for treating and re-feeding yourself with some high-carb creative cooking…and baking.

And yes, they will all be in future posts,  if I can get myself out of the kitchen long enough to write them up!!

Only kidding…I promise, they’re coming.

And now… for some shameless self promotion!

If you want to know more about Carbnite® Solution and if it’s right for you, or if you’re interested in losing body fat, gaining muscle, increasing athletic performance, or just living a healthy and fit lifestyle while using a whole foods based diet plan that is sustainable, then please email me so we can talk about how my coaching can help you.

What fat loss programs have you used? Are they working for you?


Low Carb Pumpkin PieTartlettes and the Art of baking

Pumpkin Tartlette
Hand sculpted like a piece of art!

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

I Love Art! It’s no wonder since I grew up with an abundance of art and music in my home; from an opera singer mom to an impressionist painting dad, as well as my brothers, sister and myself playing our various instruments and doing our own crafty things. And during those years I  was drawn to jewelry making, knitting, claymation, ceramics, cooking, tile making,photography, painting t-shirts, terrarium building and landscape gardening, to name just a few!
So of course I would classify myself as the creative type, possibly a diva!

But like most of us life got in the way, and it was hard to keep up with my crafting. And as I got older I found myself not doing much more than making Holiday cards and cookies! Then about 14 years ago, after a tragic event in our family, once again I had this sudden urgent creative itch, which ran deep.

At  first this resulted in the medium of painting;. However, it didn’t take me long to realize I would never be Renoir or Van Gough. I can barley draw a line, let alone a circle. No, I was painting pots. You know, the red clay ones you buy at the garden store.  I bought a few, went to the art store, stocked up on color and started painting away; which only resulted in a bunch of pots in my house that reminded me of my 5th grade art class.  The passion was there but I needed more authenticity in its expression.

It didn’t take me long to realize that I should be building the pots I was going to paint, not buying them. I needed to get down and dirty in some clay; really make something… or attempt to anyway. So I found a ceramics studio in Oakland-near my apartment and conveniently right next door to my pool-signed up for a class, and fell in love with the art of building and molding things out of clay.

After a couple years of this, and a house full of eclectic pieces, I considered myself an artist and was energized by the thought of just going to class. I dreamed about pottery as much as I did about lifting weights!

But then, tragically, the studio closed down for renovation. Unfortunately I couldn’t find another suitable place to do my craft, since they were too expensive or too far a drive. And when the City of Oakland’s Studio One finally did open it’s doors again, in it’s swanky new building, the price for a session had nearly tripled. While my tax dollars had supported the building of a new art studio my budget was unable to support taking a class. So my art fell to the wayside.

Well, kind of. Fitness has allowed me to sculpt not only my own body but those of 100’s of others’. But with my recent two surgeries, one on my hip in October of 2011, and another on my shoulder in May 2012, it’s been hard training clients, do art, or even garden (and won’t be able to garden for several months). But that craving to create has never ceased. And it’s getting stronger.

Fast forward 12 years later

My passion for creativity has surfaced again and it’s like a tsunami! But now I have found a new art medium:  the art of baking. And so here we are, at my fitness blog, drooling over pumpkins, pies and nutty crusts, and who knows what else that lies ahead!

What I really love about baking is that, just like working with clay, I can dream up anything; and using all my senses I can bring it to life. My hands now work again as they did with clay: I mold and shape the dough,  I mix the ingredients into batter, and  I fire, or now bake, what was once raw. And just as I did with my clay pieces, I hope my baked ‘piece’ turns out as intended. Sometimes it doesn’t because ovens, as with kilns, can be testy and temperamental,  having their own intentions. And sometimes I end up with a flop! But who cares. I love the whimsy of both: art and baking.

So making my pumpkin pie tartlettes brought me back in time… to the old Studio One ceramics class.  There you would find me one with the clay, transformed with intent, immersed in another world, throwing, plying and molding the mound with my hands; and bringing to life the various shapes and beings that I had no idea could come forth from the tips of my fingers. Just as it was with clay I now find myself in my closet kitchen-my culinary studio-hovered over my counter top doing the same.

Today I’m working with ground nuts, like I did with clay, and molding the delicate meal into a vessel that holds my leftover pumpkin pie batter, which is then baked into the mini, sweet, aromatic pumpkin pies. And let’s be honest, it’s a lot easier to lick your hands when they’re filled with ground nuts than it is if they’re yucked up with mud.

These spicy tartletes are 1/5th of the leftovers from my Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie. But you can make and use the entire batter which will yield about 26 mini pies.

I also did a new take on my Nutty Crust and Pumpkin Pie Batter, using more spices. Hope you like it. Let me know in the comments!

Low Carb Pumpkin Pie Tartlettes
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A creamy rich mini pumpkin pie, with a spiced, slightly salty crust, that I make from the leftovers of my Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie.
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6
  • 1 Cup Leftover pumpkin pie batter from Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie or 1 cup or your own leftover pumpkin pie batter.. Or the entire batter if you want to make 26 tartlettes.
Pumpkin Pie Batter
  • 2 cups pumpkin, mashed ( I use real sugar pumpkins, not canned. If you use canned pumpkin use 1 15oz can but results will vary)
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¼ cups Vanilla Whey Protein Powder
  • 1 can (15 oz) coconut milk, canned, full fat
  • 1 teaspoon liquid stevia - vanilla cream flavored
  • 1 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract (Use 1 more tbsp if no Vanilla cream stevia)
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon, ground
  • ½ teaspoons nutmeg (adjust to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger (adjust to taste)
Nut Crust
  • ½ cup, whole almonds, raw
  • ⅔ cup, ground hazelnuts, ground
  • ⅓ cup Finely ground, blanched almonds
  • 1 tablespoon walnut halves, roughly chopped (OPTIONAL, as these were all I had left so I used them!)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil metled
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon, ground
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoons fresh ground sea salt
  1. Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Line 6 muffin tins with liners (you will have approx. 6 tbsp of crust batter left over, which you can make into shells for something else!)
  3. Combine all ingredients into food processor or blender. Pulse or grind til combined and meal sticks together in small beads. Make sure to stop before nuts have become butter.
  4. Using 3 Tbsp of nut batter per muffin liner gently mold into liner making sure entire cup is covered in nut batter. Make sides are thicker than bottom and batter goes to top rim of liner.
  5. Bake at 350 for approx 10 minutes
  6. Let cool 10 minutes before filling
  7. Make pie batter while waiting for crusts to bake (If not using leftovers, of course)
  8. Be careful not to eat the pie batter while waiting, it tastes that yummy!
  1. If using frozen leftover batter bring to room temperature and set aside and proceed to CRUST direction.
  2. If using your own batter results may vary as well as nutritional information. I highly suggest making my lovely Pie batter.
  3. In a blender or food processor add pumpkin, eggs, spices. Blend until combined. Slowly add coconut milk and continue blending until combined. Recipe makes 5 cups of batter. Approximately 1 cup of batter makes 6 tartlettes.
  4. Gently add Approx 3 Tbsp of pumpkin batter into each of the nut crust lined muffin tins.
  5. Bake for 18-25 minutes or until center of tartlettes are firm.
  6. Check at 20 minutes and pull out of oven before tops of tartlettes turn brown
  7. It's smelling really good right now!
  8. Let cool 5 minutes
  9. Keeping the tartlettes in the liners, remove from tins and place in open Tupperware container.
  10. Place in refrigerator to set for an hour, and keep your hands off!
  11. Store loosely covered in fridge. Will keep for about a week, if they last that long uneaten!
The entire batter will make approximately 26 tartlettes. You will need to triple the Nut Crust recipe.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 6 Calories: 201 Fat: 20 Carbohydrates: 7 Sodium: 133 Fiber: 2.8 Protein: 6.65

Pumpkin Tartlettes

Gluten Free Pumpkin Tartlette

Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Custard Nutritional Information And Fat Loss Tip

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

It tastes as good as it glows!

It’s that time of year again : pumpkins and parties! And that means we’re worried about our waistlines. So it’s no wonder I’ve been getting a bunch of requests for the nutritional information for the custard portion of my Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie.

This custard is so yummy you don’t even need the crust. It would be great just served warm in ramekins, straight from the oven, drizzled with some coconut butter, heavy whipped cream or maybe even some whipped coconut milk. So here’s the nutritional breakdown so you can go to town and be creative with my custard.

According to the line on my blender the recipe yielded roughly 5 cups of custard. Since I was only able to fit 4 cups of custard into my pie crust my recipe reflects only 4/5ths of the batter. So make sure you take that into account when you make your pie.

And remember this is great for an Ulta Low Carb (ULC) program like Carbnite Solution as well as the ULC portions of the day during Carb Backloading. It’s healthy for diabetics, and for those who are watching their sugar intake. Well, shouldn’t everyone? At least during the day.

Fat Loss Tip

In fact if I can give ONE piece of advice right now for losing body fat it’s this (and don’t worry, there are more to come!):

Don’t eat carbohydrates (sugars) in the A. M. That includes any form of carbohydrates, including milk, oatmeal, cereal, as well as fructose (this list is not all inclusive). Yup, that means fruit and juice. When you eat carbs in the morning, as well as throughout the day, your body shuts down fat burning and instead, and I’m not going to get scientific here, (I’ll let Kiefer do that) starts pushing those carbs into fat cells. UGH!

You see our bodies are insulin sensitive in the morning. And contrary to what most of us have been taught, after a night of fasting the body is in the fat burning mode in the A.M.. But cortisol levels are still high. And high cortisol levels plus food, especially carbohydrates, equals less fat burning and more fat storage. So why mess up what nature intended! In fact you should wait at least 2 hours upon waking to eat anything, so that your body can keep it’s fat burning furnace stoked. If you have to eat anything stick to fat, like a tablespoon of coconut butter  or even grass fed heavy whipping cream in your tea or coffee.

Kiefer, from www.dangerouslyhardcore.com explains the science behind all of this in his very educational and easy to understand interview on Robb Wolf’s podcast. I highly recommend tuning in while your scarfing down my low carb pumpkin pie, of course!

So make sure that when you’re eating your carbs you take them in the late afternoon or evening, or even before bedtime. Who would of thunk! If you make this one change in your diet you’ll most likely lose body fat and see a difference within a month. Give it a try and stop back and tell me if your pants are falling off!

That’s why my Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie, even including the nut crust, is great during the day. It has minimal carbs and won’t promote an insulin surge, causing those nutrients to get stored as fat. So you can have your cake pie and eat it too!

P.S. I didn’t put the above links on the post for the lovely colors. Please click on them to learn some great stuff about how your body either burns fat or stores it, plus more…!

So indulge, please!

Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie Nutrition using only 4/5ths of the batter below (without the crust)

Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie Nutritional Information
Nutritional information for the pumpkin pie custard using only ⅘ths of the recipe
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 16
  • 2 cups pumpkin, mashed
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¼ cups Vanilla Whey Protein Powder
  • 1 can (15 oz) coconut milk, canned, full fat
  • 1 teaspoon liquid stevia - flavored
  • 1 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon, ground
  • ½ teaspoons nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  1. Make the filling as per instructions here: http://www.yourfitday.com/374/perfect-paleo-pumpkin-pie/
  2. READ THIS CAREFULLY! Fill your pie crust or ramekins with ONLY ⅘ths of the pie filling if you want your pie to reflect the macro-nutrient information for the Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie.
My Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie uses only ⅘ths of this batter. Each Serving of pie =3.75 TBSP of the ⅘ths batter used. You will have about 1 cup left over of batter. I did not account for that cup in the nutritional information above.   Nutrition For Total Batter(if you are using all of it!): Calories: 1388 Fat: 113g Carbs: 58g Fiber: 16g Protein: 53g Below is the nutritional information for just the ⅘th of batter I used in my recipe. Enjoy!!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 16 Calories: 56.9 Fat: 5.65 Carbohydrates: 2.9 Fiber: .8 Protein: 2.65


Low Carb Nutty Pie Crust

HI Your Fit Day Friends!

Paleo Pie Crust
This is basically a big nut cookie!

I’d been pondering a while on what would be the best low carb pie crust for my first pumpkin pie – while also being suitable for Ultra Low Carb meals, including the Carbnite Solution Diet Plan and Carb Backloading program.

Since giving up grains about 15 years ago, my Mom’s sweet, light and flaky, cinnamon-y pastry flour pie crust was no longer an option. I remember helping her in the kitchen, learning how to roll out the dough and laying the dough dipped pin over the pie plate. But the best part of pie making for me was collecting the falling waves of cut and crimped dough into my powdery hands, dousing them with cinnamon and sugar, and baking them until tender and flaky into my ‘pie crisp cookies’. They were little drops of buttery flakes that melted on my tongue like snowflakes. But my tummy, digestion and skin are so much better for giving up gluten and grains ( I do eat rice on my Carbnite!).

So my quest was to make a crust that was as alluring as a traditional one, which would also pleasing to the Paleo pallete!

To stay gluten free and low carb, coconut flour was certainly option.  But I decided I wanted to make this crust with nuts only. To bind it together I would need a fat. Yum yum, fat!

My options were butter, lard, coconut oil…and maybe some of DebbyK’s coconut butter. Well, since I don’t eat dairy butter was not really an option for this crust (but don’t let me stop your grass fed butter dipping addictions!).

And straight lard in a nut crust just didn’t seem appealing to me with pumpkin pie.

I thought coconut butter, since it’s so thick, might seize up and make the nuts harder to spread, which would result in using a lot more coconut butter – quite possibly my entire jar. And truth be told I’d rather eat DebbyK’s Coconut Butter straight out of the jar than dump most of the jar into my pie crust. I confess, I’m an addict.  Although, I do intend to try using the coconut butter in my next pie crust, so stay tuned!

Since this was my first pie crust I hopped to the web to get some inspirations and see what others, who are gluten free and primarily primal, had cooked up. Although the tart crust from Elenas Pantry was inspiring and looked tasty, I decided to exclude the egg, make it a nut medley, and throw in all the nuts I had in my fridge instead of using only almond flour.

The first crust I ended up with (without cinnamon because I forgot to add it in-oops!) sent wafts of sweet nuttiness through my small apartment. It was so hard not to eat it up right then. But I was thinking of you, so I didn’t. Which was the right thing to do, because if I had eaten that crust/cookie I’d be stuck without a crust for my Perfect Paleo Pumpkin Pie, which I hope you are making right now for Thanksgiving. And when I added the cinnamon in a second testing the crust came out even better: sweet nuttiness! That’s the one you’ll find below.

Really I could eat this pie crust alone as a giant cookie it, tastes that yummy!

As a side: I got even more creative with another crust for my tartlettes which I made from the leftover pie batter, and I added in 1/2 tsp ginger as well. Feel free to add a 1/4 tsp to the recipe below if you wish, and maybe even 1/4  tsp of nutmeg to marry the crust and pie together even more. If you do, let me know how it comes out.

Anyway, you’ll get to taste the tartlettes soon enough!

Here is my Low Carb Nutty Crust:

Nutty Pie Crust
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A sweet nutty crust that tastes just as good as a giant cookie!!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American/Paleo
Serves: 16
  • 1 Cup walnuts
  • ½ Cup almonds
  • ½ Cup almond flour (blanched)
  • ½ Cup hazelnut flour
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 2 Tsp cinnamon
  • Optional:
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  1. In a blender or food processor ( I only have a blender) add all pie crust ingredients.
  2. Pulse until nuts start to get crumbly. Be careful as to not allow nuts to start forming a butter.
  3. Continue to pulse until mixture forms a crumbly meal and comes together when pinched. Make sure you don't grind too much, you don't want nut nut butter! Stop to scrape down sides as needed.
  4. Scrape out into mound in center of pie pan or dish
  5. Starting from middle work the pie crust out and up sides of pie tin. This part of pie making reminds me of hand building a bowl or plate out of clay! Allow for thicker crust up the sides. Bottom can be thinner.
  6. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until it just starts to brown. Do not over bake!
  7. Remove and let completely cool before filling
  8. Pie crust can be made day ahead and stored in refrigerator
  9. To keep carb count low I slice my pies into 16ths.
  10. Feel free to make this 8 servings but account for your daily net carbs.
  11. Remember: If this crust is for a pie stay focused, think PIE, and Do Not eat this as a cookie!
This crust has been known to disguise itself as a cookie, so beware! It's highly addicting. It can also be used as a crumble for muffin and cake toppings. Be creative!!
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1/16 Calories: 125 Fat: 12 Saturated fat: 2 Carbohydrates: 3 Sodium: 38 Fiber: 1.63 Protein: 3

Paleo Pie Crust
This is basically a big nut cookie!