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Low-Carb Dinner Menu Ideas

Low-Carb Main Dishes Made Simple

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Updated May 16, 2014

Low-Carb Dinner
Photo © Karen Struthers
Making low-carb dinners may seem challenging, but once you get the hang of it, it's really not hard. You probably are already making a few main dish recipes that are almost diet-ready.

Start With What You Know

Main dishes that are old standbys and are naturally low-carb or can easily adjusted are the best place to start. Think about your favorite meals. In particular:
  • Look to your meals where the protein is fairly plainly cooked, such as grilled or pan-fried meats, broiled fish, etc. Include more vegetables instead of potatoes or rice, including substitutes such as "Cauli-Rice". If the plate seems puny, add a green salad with an olive oil-based dressing, or a soup. Also, don't be afraid of including more healthy fat than you are used to -- it will help satisfy you until the next meal.
  • Skillet meals consisting of meat and veggies are often naturally low-carb, or you can just leave out a starchy or sugary ingredient or two. Top Skillet Chicken Meals
  • Make your favorite quiche without the crust

De-Carb Your Favorites

I firmly believe that to make low-carb eating into a way of life (instead of a "diet"), it's important to find low-carb versions of a lot of your favorite meals. For example:

Hunt for New Favorites

  • Check out the Main Dish Recipes on this site
  • Side Dish Recipes
  • Soups and Salads (includes cole slaw)
  • There are more ideas in my Low-Carb Menus
  • If you are on a specific diet plan, take a look at the cookbook(s) that go along with it, or other low-carb cookbooks. Checking a book out of the library can help you figure out if the author's tastes are similar to your own without investing in the book too soon.

Try a New Cuisine

Some cuisines are naturally less carby than others. Examples:
  • Traditional Greek food is often less starchy and sugary than others.
  • When people think about France they usually think of bread, but traditional French food is only moderate in carbohydrates. In fact, recently the French have been decreasing their intake of fat and increasing their carbs, and getting fatter.
  • Many Asian dishes become low-carb if you leave out the rice or noodles. Here's an easy Thai dish .
  • Check out the links below for more low-carb recipes from various world cuisines.
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