Make an easy low-carb version of Mexican fajitas: using mini peppers instead of tortillas, you get the perfect party food. Delicious, fun to eat, and gorgeous to serve!
This a great, gorgeous ketofied way of serving fajitas: they can still be eaten by hand, as nature intended, but we won’t be needing tortillas for that. We’ll use the mini bell peppers instead!
I normally go food shopping looking for ingredients, but sometimes the opposite happens. An ingredient that I didn’t even think of just asks* to be taken home. I found the cutest package of organic mini colored sweet peppers at the grocery store across the street. The baby peppers were looking at me like puppies through a pet shop window.
*(I do talk to food occasionally and I don’t consider it a major psychiatric issue – compared to others I might or not have – so don’t worry for me)
Fajitas: the most keto-friendly Mexican food
Fajitas are the best bet keto option if you are eating out in a Mexican restaurant: just ask the waiter to hold on the tortillas. You won’t miss a thing, the tortillas are really optional. Their are just the vehicle for the fajita, as nachos are the vehicle for salsa or cheese sauce.
I understand that food that is transported to your mouth via hand is much more fun to eat than via fork, so yes, this is where the lack of tortillas might be a let down. To reclaim on the fun lost, maybe ask for extra dips on the side instead? Fajitas are generally served with an assortment of delicious low-carb side options: guacamole, pico de galo, sour cream, and queso (cheese!)
Are sweet peppers and onions keto?
Bell peppers, although also called sweet peppers, are a low-carb vegetable. The macros in red bell peppers are decent enough: 100 grams contain 0.3 grams of fat, 6 grams total carbs, 3.9 grams of net carbs, and 1 gram of protein. And only 31 calories!
Onions, the other classic fajita ingredient, are a little higher in carbs, at 9 total carbs and 7.3 net carbs per 100 grams, but they are healthy and delicious and can still be part of your keto diet if eaten in moderation.
For comparison, cauliflower, a keto favorite, has 5 total carbs and 3 net carbs per 100 grams. But consider the quantity that’s usually eaten of each: you probably eat more than double the weight in cauliflower than you do of onion. This makes the amount of carbs in them even. See, macros are all about portion sizing 😎
Solving the tortilla conundrum
If I had bought the big sweet peppers, I’d make some sizzling fajitas. They are so simple to do: just grill a thick skirt steak, and serve up sliced with stir-fried strips of onions and bell peppers in all colors. And the dips of your choice. But still, no tortillas. How to take the fajitas into your mouth in a fun way? Use a keto vehicle.
Enter the photogenic, colorful baby peppers. I wanted to showcase their cuteness. This led me to re-invent fajitas: instead of slicing up the bell peppers and adding to the fajita, I decided to keep them whole and stuff them. Now, the mini peppers are the perfect keto vehicle for fajita! Who needs tortillas? This is the perfect solution for your keto food transportation situation.
It’s easy to make. It’s a great party food. And it goes down very well with a cold beer. You just need to get some low-carb beer 🍺
Still, if you really want some keto tortillas… you can check out this easy recipe here.
How to make stuffed mini peppers
Cut the meat into very small cubes, of about half an inch each. We need to stuff the baby peppers with it, so the smaller the better. Sprinkle the salt and spices. (1)
Heat up about 2 tablespoons of olive oil or lard in a frying pan. Dump all the fajita meat at once, on high heat. Stir the meat around so it will cook evenly. When the meat is browned, add the onions (2), and fry until the onions get soft. A couple of minutes should be enough.
Turn off the heat, and while you wait for the fajita meat to cool off a little, prepare the baby peppers for stuffing (3). Very carefully, with a small sharp knife, clean out the baby peppers: cut out the tops, then insert the knife inside and remove the ribs and seeds. The more space you make inside, the more meat you can stuff.
When the meat is cool enough, using a teaspoon, start stuffing the peppers. Hold them inside your hand, and don’t be afraid of pushing down on the meat with the spoon: you are holding them tight, so they will not burst.
Arrange the peppers standing on a greased muffin tray, and take it to the oven at 200 °C (392 °F) for approximately 10-15 minutes, fan on. Baby peppers roast fast – compared with their full sized counterparts. You can tell they are done when the skin gets wrinkly and with slightly charred areas (4).
To serve the keto fajitas standing, you can use ramekins. Or arrange them side by side on a platter. Garnish with chopped cilantro.
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