Life after surgery can be full of healthy yet delicious foods. However, it can be difficult to know what to make and how to make new foods taste amazing. Half the battle is having a guide or recipe to follow to simplify the process.
When looking for a tasty recipe to enjoy, it is important to take a look at the ingredients. Be cautious of high sugar condiments and ingredients along with foods high in carbohydrates. Especially when you are still on your weight loss journey.
The recipe we are highlighting this week is high in protein and fiber, but low in starchy carbohydrates and sugar. It is an excellent option for people following the Stage 4 diet (weight loss phase) or those seeking a low carbohydrate recipe! This bell pepper skillet recipe was created by Mary’s Whole Life blog.
Deconstructed Stuffed Pepper Skillet
This makes 4 servings. However, it is important to portion your food. Since the vegetables and protein are all mixed together, make sure your total serving does not exceed 5 ounces (3 ounces of protein and 2 ounces of vegetables)..
- 2 TBSP Olive Oil
- 1 pound ground turkey
- ½ yellow onion
- 2 bell peppers
- 2 garlic cloves
- 24 oz jar of a Low Sugar Marinara Sauce
- 1 bag frozen cauliflower rice
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- 1 tsp thyme
- Red pepper flakes (optional for a little heat)
- Shredded cheese on top
- Heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet.
- Add ground turkey and cook for 5-7 minutes until browned and cooked through. Remove from the pan using a slotted spoon, and set aside.
- Add 1 more tbsp of olive oil to the hot pan and add the bell peppers, onion, and garlic. Saute until they are tender.
- Add in the frozen cauliflower rice along with the salt, pepper, oregano, thyme, and red pepper flakes.
- Sautee all the vegetables until the rice begins to soften, then add the ground beef back into the pan.
- Add the jar of marinara sauce, stir to combine, and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
- Serve this unstuffed pepper skillet with shredded cheese on top. Enjoy!
Nutrition Information: Total Carbohydrates 8g, Total Sugar 2g, and Total Protein 22g
Breakdown of the Ingredients
This recipe has some great components for individuals following bariatric surgery. First, this is a high protein recipe that uses a lean protein source like ground turkey. If your preference is ground beef, make sure to purchase an extra lean option. The shredded cheese on top is an added little boost of protein as well! For those trying to avoid dairy, Mary’s Whole Life suggests adding 1 TBSP of nutritional yeast when you add the other spices to the recipe. This has a nice cheesy flavor as well!
The bell peppers, onion, and cauliflower rice are great vegetable options. Someone could even use nopales, squash, or even spinach to help add even more variety and play to your vegetable preferences. Remember, corn and potatoes are considered starchy carbohydrates and should be avoided when weight loss is the goal.
This recipe incorporates extra virgin olive oil, which is an excellent option for a heart healthy fat. If you would like, you could even add a little sliced avocado as a serving suggestion for those needing a little extra nutrition.
Herbs and Spices
Additionally, it is packed with flavor! The herbs, spices, and even red pepper flakes help this recipe burst with flavor. It is just important to be mindful of the brand of marinara sauce your purchase to make sure it is not high in sugar.
Take a look at our Pinterest account for more recipe ideas and inspiration!