1/16/20

Creamy Sugar Free, Low Carb Cheesecake made with Sour Cream




You should chill your cheesecake overnight as it makes the texture creamy and wonderful. I cannot EVER wait and always have a piece warm...  so this photo is of it still warm.

Cheesecakes are so incredibly easy to make, take almost no work and yet are so good, and can be made into so many flavors!  They are also one of the easiest desserts to make into a sugar free, low carb or keto option so most people following a low carb way of eating will have these on hand often.

I've been making cheesecakes regularly since about 1992.   They are all basically made about the same, give or take one or two small ingredients and perhaps whether or not you use a water bath to bake it, or the mixing process.  Generally speaking though, you'll have cream cheese or ricotta cheese, sugar or sweetener, eggs, lemon juice, vanilla and sometimes sour cream.  The crusts are also pretty generalized.

This is a cheesecake very similar to the first cheesecake recipe I was given a copy of in the early 90's, by the wife of the Pastor I worked for in Tennessee.  She always made hers in a cake pan though.  I use the traditional springform pan. She used sugar of course, while I use a natural sweetener.  In this cake, I was using Lakanto Monkfruit Sweetener - which I've been thrilled with so far in everything I've been making lately.




Basic Low Carb Crust:

2 c almond flour, other nut flour, ground pecans, fine sugar free cookie crumbs, a mixture of any/all
1/2 c natural sweetener, confectioner's style (like So Nourished, Just Like Sugar, etc.)
1/4 t salt
4 T butter

Mix or blend the almond flour, ground nuts, sweetener and salt in a small bowl.  Add the butter, and mash/mix with a fork, your fingers or a rubber scraper until it starts to come together, place in your pan (for pie or bars).  Press evenly all across the bottom of a springform pan. Bake for about 12 minutes at 350.  Remove and let cool while you make your cheesecake.

Basic Plain Cheesecake

5 packages cream cheese, softened
4 eggs
1 1/2 c sweetener of choice that is not liquid drops (adapt the amount for the brand/style you are using*)
1 c sour cream
lemon juice
vanilla

*I used a mixture of Lakanto and Swerve - the confectioner's or 'powdered sugar' style.  Sometimes I use the granular, but it can make a less creamy texture.  You can also just whirl your granular sweetener in a food processor or blender. 

Beat the cream cheese smooth, then add your sweetener, followed by the eggs, sour cream and lemon juice and vanilla to taste.  Start with about a tablespoon of lemon juice and 2 teaspoons of vanilla but if you want a more lemon flavor, don't add the vanilla.  And if you wish, just switch to 2 teaspoons of lemon juice and a tablespoon of vanilla.  (You can add other flavors, add fruits, mix about a cup of the batter with cocoa and swirl it in, add sugar free candy pieces like crumbled peanut butter cups, add swirls of sugar free jams or jellies, etc.  But I'm a weirdo I guess.  I like plain, vanilla cheesecake best of all).

Pour your batter into a well greased 9 or 10 inch springform pan (or a large cake pan like my bosses wife used to use).  Bake at 325 for about 1 1/2 hours for the springform pan. Remove and let it cool completely then cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate overnight.  This changes the texture.  Serve with a drizzle or dollop of whatever you wish.  Caramel, chocolate, fruit, whipped cream, peanut butter sauce, crushed candies, crumbled cookies - using all sugar free and low carb options of course!

*I sometimes use a water bath and sometimes half this and use a small sprinform pan to make this in my InstantPot pressure cooker.  I don't typically bother with the water bath though.  It makes cheesecakes a bit more of a pain to make.  I had my pizza stone heating in the oven this time and just put the springform pan on it and baked it that way.  Turned out great.  If you do get a cheesecake that develops a crack during baking or cooling, just add a nice topping!  Covered with a sugar free jam, lemon filling, crumbled sugar free cookies or candies or even just covered in sweetened whipped cream, it is beautiful and no one would ever know.



This time I used a mixture of almond flour and ground pecans leftover from Christmas baking for the crust

Pressed into the bottom of the pan (and just a tiny lip up the side)

Baked for 12 minutes in my oven, until starting to turn golden on the edges

A yummy smooth cheesecake batter

In the pan and now... into the oven!










You might be interested in some of the products related to this post, available through Amazon;



Swerve Confectioners Sweetener
Lakanto Monkfruit Sweetener
Lakanto Confectioner's Style
Wilton 10" non-stick springform pan







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1/12/20

#WhatsForDinner? - LOW CARB AND SUGAR FREE. This is an unexpected addition to the last post. This time with a long list of ideas!

I randomly posted what we had for dinner last week, just for the heck of it. But this morning I glanced at one of my kazillion hand written and printed out 3-ring recipe binders (I have binders, notebooks, recipe boxes, folders, etc.) and in the front cover one of them I had printed "Tried & True" Low Carb & Sugar Free on the front of, I had an idea list from years ago that I honestly never bother looking at anymore, but it gave me the idea that I might want to help out readers by posting a list of 'IDEAS' because I know the question "What do I make for dinner tonight?"  VERY WELL.


There is a very long post hidden inside the topic of how I use a "MEAL IDEA LIST" and don't believe or follow weekly or monthly menu plans. But that's for another day maybe.  Today I'm skipping head and I'm just going to start re-typing some of the menu or meal ideas I had jotted down in this one particular 3-ring binder.  I'm thinking this particular list might be from about 8 (?) years ago.  I forgot it was tucked inside there.  I have various 'idea lists' depending on what we like right now, what we don't really like to eat anymore, or got tired of.  The lists change based on what 'sounds good' at that time.  My lists can be 10 meal ideas long or 65 meal ideas long.  Sometimes family chimes in.  Other times it's just me brainstorming, or flipping through the kazillion recipes I have.

So this list...

It was during the Atkins and Low Carb, Sugar Free stage... but we weren't following 'keto' so some of the items might have 15-20 carbs OR have more carbs depending on how YOU MAKE THEM and what BRAND PRODUCTS you use.  

*** This is important ***   
Example:  the brand unflavored or vanilla whey protein powder I use is 0 carbs and 0 sugar, but the brand you buy might have 20 grams of sugar and 8 carbs.   READ LABELS.

Also, if I write down an idea for 'enchiladas' this is going to leave you open to what YOU use for the tortilla wraps.  The carb counts between homemade crepe style wraps verses those of you who buy store bought low carb tortillas, verses some made with almond flour or coconut flour.  The diced tomatoes or tomato paste you use might have a bunch of sugar carbs added.  Mine doesn't.  Brands and styles of ingredients are important so yes, you can have almost ANY food item/meal assuming you have a way of substituting products to keep it sugar free and low carb or keto. If you see 'cheeseburgers' for example, you have to use your brains - no, we are not having them on store bought buns.  Use the mozzarella fat head dough and make buns, or if you trust a low-carb company's buns, or even using a lettuce wrap or no bun at all.  I'm a big proponent of using common sense, and have no patience for those who don't. 

ONE OF MY RANDOM MEAL OR RECIPE IDEA LISTS I FOUND (from around 2011 I think)
- LOW CARB & SUGAR FREE


Turkey Club Sandwich
Asian Beef with Bean Sprouts
Grilled Rib Eye
Chicken Salad
Tuna Salad
Pork Chops with Chive Sauce
Egg Salad
BBQ Pork Chops
BBQ Chicken Breasts
Southwestern Chicken Breasts - grilled
Roast
Cheeseburgers
Buffalo Wings and Blue Cheese Dressing
Shrimp Scampi
Grilled Fish
Grilled Salmon with Lemon Butter
Fish Tacos
Steamed Mussels with Garlic Butter
Crab Legs
Lemon Pepper Chicken
Grilled Scallops with Bacon
Grilled Pork Chops
Chicken Fingers
Creamy Mushroom Chicken
Pizza Burger
Lettuce Wraps - turkey, avocado
Asian Chicken with Almonds
Chicken Breasts with Italian Cream Sauce
Prime Rib
Lasagna with zucchini noodles
Fried Chicken
Parmesan Chicken
Feta and Bacon Stuffed Chicken Breasts
Baked Chicken with Sour Cream Sauce
Grilled Spicy Shrimp
Tuna Cakes
Marinated Grilled Chicken - Fair Style
Creamy Garlic Chicken
Broccoli Stuffed Chicken Breasts
Enchilada Bake
Smothered Pork Loin Chops
Fajitas
Pork Chops with Smoked Gouda and Bacon
Cream Cheese Crock Pot Chicken
Baked Chicken Breasts
Crab Cakes
Stuffed Red Snapper
Bacon Wrapped Pork Chops
Chicken Cordon Blue
Smothered Chicken
BLT
Cheesy Chili Bake

Cauliflower Salad
Broccoli Salad (ranch)
Mashed Turnips
Turnip Fries
Mashed Cauliflower
Zucchini Noodles with butter
7 layer salad
Broccoli and Bacon Salad
Zucchini Patties
Faux Fried Rice
Homemade Protein Noodles
Chef Salad
Green Bean Almondine
Avocado and Bacon
Cucumbers in Creamy Sauce
Sauteed Vegetables
Jalapeno Poppers
Stuffed Mushrooms
Deviled Eggs
Cauliflower Casserole
Cheesy Cauliflower and Ham
Garden Salad
Steamed Broccoli with Lemon Butter
Hot Spinach Dip
Hot Crab Casserole or Dip
Mock Macaroni and Cheese
Almond Thin Crackers
Creamed Spinach


While typing this out, I smiled a few times as there are things on this list I've never made (Prime Rib, I'm looking at you) and things we kind of make, because I make it completely different now.  Things I can't believe aren't on this old list (because many products and ingredients weren't available back then or I hadn't thought of it or found a recipe to try yet).

So this old (2011?) list is just a great place to 'brainstorm' as it may lead to a lot of other ideas.

And soon, I'll do a new UPDATED list of about 40 menu ideas we use NOW that are actually more keto as we tend to follow keto more now (which is really just the Atkins Induction Phase!  But it was hijacked years ago by others and is now just called eating "keto" as if it's a new invention.  For those of you oldies on Atkins, you know what I'm talking about.)  Call it what you want, but I'll do a more  recent and updated low carb and sugar free list soon!


__________________________


Need ingredients?  Need groceries delivered?  Need a certain dish, pan or appliance?  Need a cookbook - low carb, keto or otherwise?   What about a motorcycle part then?  A new bedspread, coffee table or maybe some baby diapers?  LOL.

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1/10/20

#WhatsForDinner? Low Carb, Keto, Atkins, etc. All week.


#WhatsForDinner?

This week we've had:

  • Santa Fe Salads (grilled marinated chicken and spicy homemade sauce)
  • Cheeseburgers on the Grill and Side Salad
  • Steaks with sauteed Mushrooms, Low Carb Cheesy 'Hashbrown' Casserole
  • Fish Tacos 
Tonight I'm thinking it is going to be either grilled salmon or stuffed salmon
Tomorrow I'm considering Southern Style Pulled Pork BBQ
And probably Homemade Low Carb/Keto Pizza Sunday


(All recipes are posted on An American Housewife, you can search labels or the search box, on the right hand side bar).


*update - we did have grilled salmon and a side salad
We did not do a pulled pork, instead I grilled patties from my homemade Chicken, Spinach and Feta Sausage (posted numerous times; just do a search) along with grilling zucchini and peppers with them.






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