Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Tuesday Taco Nights are Low Carb FUNctional Food

Tuesday Tacos Put the FUN back in tacos!

Low Carb Cheese Taco Shells are a FUNctional Food!
At the Fluffy Chix Roost and Sock Monkey Habitat (or as some uncharitably refer to us - the Looney Bin) , the “boys” would choose Tuesday Taco Night any night we let them. It could be Thursday and we’d ask what they want for dinner and they’d reply, “Tuesday Tacos”. They don’t have very large brains and in their minds Tuesday and Tacos are indelibly fused.

Being the true TexMex lovin’, Texas boys they are, they believe TexMex should secede from the food pyramid and form its own pyramid. Barring that, TexMex should at least become the 5th food group. And if TexMex did indeed become a 5th food group, Tuesday Tacos would become the iconic emblem to epitomize said food group.

I should inform you, the "boys" are quite the activists...
click image to enlarge.
 It’s gotten to the point that I’ve just quit askin’ the “boys” what they want for dinner because I know their response will not vary. They are very predictable. In unison, “Tuesday Tacos! Olé!”


Now, I should tell you their ideas of a good taco filling and yours will most likely clash. See, the “boys” think tacos should be filled with peanut butter and bananas. And no matter how often I remind them bananas are not part of the low carb world, they remind me they are Paleo and that their diet specifies bananas are something their ancestor Grok ate, especially when you’ve climbed the food ladder and enjoy them in moderation. (I'd like to give a shout-out to Mark Sisson at Mark's Daily Apple for teaching the boys about Paleo Nutrition and their ancestor, Grok...oh you just don't even want to get into evolution with Buddy!)

Buddy told me during the latest Great Banana Debate, “Mom, you KNOW monkeys make great climbers. How many times do we have to show you? We’ve been there. Done that. We’re over here now, Mom. And we like our bananas. We know what moderation is and can’t help it if you and Dad are slow learners.”

Yeah. So what do you say to a 4 year old sock monkey boy who uses logic to win arguments? He makes a good point. It probably wouldn’t get the Queen's knickers in a twist if you had a couple of slices of banana as a serving. But who sits down and honestly has 2 slices of banana in a serving? I can think of only one scenario where this is a feasible serving and it doesn’t involve tacos. It’s when that banana slice is topped with a hunk of Chunky Monkey Peanut Butter, frozen, and covered in a dark chocolate shell. But I digress. See? That is the problem with bananas! They’re too good for their own good!

The "boys" think Tuesday Tacos should not be
filled with yummy meat, veg and cheese,
but should be filled with peanut butter and bananas.
The "boys" are wrong.
At that point, I reminded Buddy that peanuts are not nuts, but legumes, a member of the pea and bean family, and as such are prohibited from Paleo living. But you know, the “boys” are sock monkeys. And, I’ve come to learn there really is less chance of winning an argument against a sock monkey than there is winning an argument with a DFSW (Delicate Flower of Southern Womanhood). Trust me. I know. I am one. A DFSW – not a sock monkey. The “boys” are sock monkeys. Remember?

And that was where Buddy nearly went Ape sh** on me and reminded me that they are sock monkeys! They don’t get caught up in all that nonsensical taxonomic caca de toro and threatened that I would have to pry the Chunky Monkey Peanut Butter jar out of his cold dead hands. (Remember? They’re TexMex sock monkeys and are apt to make up words in three languages – English, TexMex, and Sock Monkey?)

End of argument.

I’m doing a little house cleaning here in the Fluffy Chix Cook Chicken Run and am going to repurpose the area formerly occupied by the Fluffy Chix Talk Freezer Diving. I found the Taco post and want to be sure it isn’t lost for all posterity – or at least the recipes from it! Not that they’re recipes – they are loose interpretations and can become your own. It’s another YOI (You Own It) Recipe.

Work it baybeee!

So without further ado, brought to you by the “boys” – I give you, Tuesday Tacos! Ole!

Tuesday Tacos! Olé!
Serves – 8 Tacos + a bit of leftover meat
Prep Time – 30 Minutes
Cook Time – 20 Minutes
Difficulty – Hmmm. With or without Sock Monkey help?

Tuesday Taco Fixings - Make the recipe YOURS!

For Taco Shells
1c Part Skim Mozzarella, shredded
1c Sharp Cheddar, shredded
2 slices Baby Swiss (from Deli)

For Meat Filling
1-1/2 lb Ground Beef
1 small Onion, chopped coarsely
1 large Jalapeno, chopped with seeds
2 Tbsp Chili Powder
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Black Pepper
1 tsp Cumin, ground
½ tsp Coriander, ground
1 tsp Turmeric, ground
1/2c Salsa
1/4c Cilantro, fresh (optional)
1c Water

For Taco Guts
1 recipe Taco Meat
8 Cheese Taco Shells
4 Campari or Roma Tomatoes or 2 large Tomatoes
8 leaves Romaine
1/2c Purple Onion, chopped
1/2c Cheddar Cheese, shredded (Yes, I understand this is the equivalent of eating cheese on top of cheese.)

1 Avocado, sliced or made into guacamole
1/2c Sour Cream or Greek Yogurt (optional)
1/2c Salsa (optional)

Lettuce leaves line the low carb cheese shells and give
Tuesday Tacos added strength.
For Taco Shells
Grate mozzarella and cheddar cheeses with coarse grater and mix together. Lightly sprinkle a circle of cheese onto parchment paper cut to fit in the microwave. Microwave cheese one shell at a time for 40-50 seconds per shell. Immediately remove from microwave and drape over a curved mold (I use my rolling pin covered in aluminum foil).

Use paper towels to help shape the cheese on the parchment paper over the mold and to blot the cheese as you go. When the cheese cools it will harden. Gently peel off parchment paper and continue with the next shell. This should make about 8 shells.

Repeat the process of microwaving with each slice of Swiss cheese. Shape them and blot. Wait for them to cool and crisp.

For Meat Filling
In large skillet combine first 9 ingredients for meat filling and sauté over high heat until meat is browned. Drain meat and return to skillet. Add salsa, chopped cilantro and water. Mix thoroughly. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer and cook for 30 minutes or until meat becomes tender and pan juices have thickened.

For Tacos
Assemble taco ingredients to your specification. We love to line the shells with a lettuce leaf. It helps make the shells stronger and keeps them from getting soggy from the meat drippings. Add 1/4c of meat filling per shell and top with tomato, purple onion, cheese and 1/8th of an avocado. A dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt and a spoon of salsa make a great finish. Ole!

Nutritional Information

Cheese Taco Shells - Unfilled, Full Recipe


Cheese Taco Shells - Unfilled, Single Shell

Meat Filling - Entire Recipe

Meat Filling - Single Serving

"The Works" Tuesday Taco - Single Taco*
(Includes - 1/4c Meat, 1 Romaine Leaf, 2Tbsp Tomato, 1 Tbsp Cheese, 1/16Avocado or 1Tbsp, 1Tbsp Sour Cream, 1 Tbsp Red Salsa)

(*Note - You can "lighten" Tuesday Tacos by choosing a leaner meat. The caloric values are based on 80/20 meat calculated from raw. So if you wanted to or are fat-phobic, you can drain the meat. I don't do that. I simply enjoy 80/20 much better than 90/10 and eat the fat. You can economize on carbs by cutting back on the spices, or using a lower carb salsa. I used LaVictoria brand for the calculations but in reality at home, I generally make my own from fresh ingredients using the food processor. You can also choose, as I do, to eliminate the sour cream in favor of Greek yogurt. And please! That's all I can help you with...I simply WILL not advise you to use low fat or no fat cheese or fake cheese, unless you have a dairy allergy! ;) There, I said it!)

SusieT’s Notes
Yes, four forks. With five sock monkeys in the house who are rabid for Tuesday Tacos and being decidedly out-numbered, could I seriously consider giving these tacos anything but four forks?

"Low Carb Tuesday Tacos should be the icon of
the TexMex Food Revolution. They're tasty,
good for you, and just plain FUN to eat," declared Buddy!
Here’s my only comment about the shells. The shells are fragile. The mozzarella helps give them body, which is good, but I actually prefer keeping them flat, like a tostada shell. I also like building taco salad bowls by draping them over the back of a ramekin to shape them.

Also, they’re greasy and definitely need to be blotted after they come out of the nuke box. Once you blot and let them crisp up, then they aren’t greasy any longer.

One thing I can vouch for…Tuesday Tacos are a FUNctional Food. The taco shells put the FUN back in Tuesday Tacos. You can eat ‘em just like a “regular person” or so the “boys” inform me. And there’s no need for a fork unless you just swing that way!
Hope you’ll give these a try!

Oh and Buddy told me to tell you, “Olé!”


  1. How could one not love Taco's with cheese shells?

    1. I know, right? They're TACOS!

      And cheese!



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  2. These sound great, but your nutritional information is missing. :)

    1. There ya go! I just hadn't had time to get them up! Thanks for the reminder!

  3. Checking, checking, checking - hah! No okra - it's safe!
    I'm in!

    Seriously, anyone who doesn't love these tacos are part of the covert alien invasion force, and not to be trusted. Don't bother reporting them to the authorities. (The authorities are part of the invasion - duh!) Simply take non-taco eaters on a leisurely drive in the scenic country-side, and just do what I do with them. But a word of warming: Don't bury them close too the roadway. Man, was that embarrassing...

    1. Elwin, hon, I swanny! You keep me in stitches. You're a hoot! That's what you are!

      LOL, we call that a "Bad Dog Ride"!

      So glad to see you back here. I will try to keep the okra to a minimum, but I do have two recipes that need to come out of the woodshed before summer okra season is over. It just wouldn't be fair! ;) hehe...

  4. Yum! I like the "make the recipe yours" idea! Super post as per usual, my friend. :)

  5. I was just whining about needing a chip recipe for salsa and guac. I can't wait to try this out and break them up for scoopers. Oh, you are so darn delicious!!!

    1. Arlene I have better corn chip substitutes than the cheese shells, but cheese shells are pretty tasty! :)

      Make my Low Carb Tortillas, then melba them until very crisp by cooking at 250 degrees until crisp but not brown. You may need to tent them with aluminum foil to keep them from over-browning! Or else, try making my corn tortilla recipe. So much like tostada chips you will think you won the lottery!!! MUAH! Good luck and let me know! (Oh and for a no cook thing, I use Pork Rinds as a scoop for salsa, guacamole, and queso on those days I just don't have it in me to cook! They taste delicious and even the carb monkeys love them!)

    2. Arlene - look under the labels titles of

      "low carb tortillas" for both of those recipes. Or you can use the search window in the upper right corner to search the blog for them, but the labels will take you to both recipes very quickly!

  6. I am experimenting with cod fish, and also I'm trying to stay on a low carb diet simultaneously. I'm interested if anyone has any kind of good low carb recipes I could use on cod? . . Thanks a bunch, men!. Grilled or perhaps broiled? Either, or perhaps - definitely not picky!.
    My webpage : more?

    1. You can go look at my oven baked fish recipe. I use that on cod all the time. Easy and delicious! You can also grill it or pan roast it. Fast and tastes so good!

  7. Great post!! I am going to put this on the menu rotation!!

  8. Perhaps I missed something. What do you do with the 2 slices of swiss? I see that you micrawave them and shape them, but are they just an alternative to the other shells?

    1. Hi there! You nuke each slice of Swiss on a separate piece of parchment paper. It just gives you a different kind of shell for a change! You can add 1/4 to 1/3c more of each kind of cheese though, and omit the Swiss cheese if you prefer! Make it yours! YOI! :)


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