Bariatric Meal Planning.
You’ve heard time and time again that bariatric meal planning helps reduce stress and keeps you on track with your health goals. But it’s not always easy.
Bariatric meal planning can take time if you are looking for recipes on Pinterest or in one of your favorite cookbooks. You have to decide what entrees you are going to cook plus what side dishes you want to include for you and your family. With this in mind, the recipe I am sharing with you today includes your main entree plus your side dishes so it is one less thing to think about!
As I discussed in my interview, Eating Healthy After Bariatric Surgery for the Entire Family, meal planning involves asking yourself, “What protein, vegetable and starch should I serve during meals?” The following recipe includes all of these components to make the process easy.
I would like to introduce you to my Balsamic Glazed Pork Chops with Roasted Kale and Sweet Potato. It is super yummy and packed with nutrients.
This dish includes nutrients that are important for those that have undergone weight loss surgery. Pork provides protein, iron, zinc and B vitamins such as thiamin and riboflavin. The sweet potatoes add fiber, vitamin A, and vitamin C. And lastly, kale provides your body with additional fiber, vitamin A, vitamin K and folate. If you are interested in more foods that provide your body with what it needs after bariatric surgery, please be sure to check out my Top 10 Dietitian Approved Foods to Eat After Bariatric Surgery.
Unlike other balsamic glazes, this dish uses the natural sweetness from the sauteed onions instead of added sugars. It is important not to rush the browning process of the onions to make sure they have a sweet flavor.
Bariatric Meal: Balsamic Glazed Pork Chops with Roasted Kale and Sweet Potato
For pork chops
- 1 lb of boneless pork chops
- 1/4 cup onion, chopped
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1/4 c good quality balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp thyme
For sweet potato
- 2 sweet potatoes
- 1 bunch of kale, chopped with ribs removed
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Preheat oven to 400 F
- Wash sweet potato and place on baking sheet. Bake for about 45 min until soft. While baking, begin pork chops.
- Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until browned. It is important they brown to bring out sweetness.
- While sautéing, mix together balsamic vinegar, garlic, oregano and thyme. When onions are browned add this mixture to pan. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 5 min.
- In a skillet sear pork chops for about 2 min on each side. Then glaze with reduced balsamic mixture. Put skillet in oven and cook for an additional 5-10 min depending on how thick your pork chops are.
- Place kale in large mixing bowl. Toss with olive oil and then put in a single layer on baking sheet. Cook in oven 5-10 min until edges of kale begin to crisp.
If you are in the early stages after bariatric surgery you may not be eating sweet potatoes at this time to save room for protein. That is okay. Please omit the sweet potatoes or prepare them for your family instead. If you are in the pureed phase, this recipe will still work for you. Just puree the pork, kale and add chicken broth in a food processor and you will have tasty meal — I taste tested it and it was good. I promise!
If you enjoyed this bariatric meal recipe please make sure to also check out my Mediterranean Turkey Burgers featured on My Bariatric Life.
Helping you find balance on and off your plate,
Kristin Willard, RDN
Content is the opinion of the author and does not constitute or is a replacement for medical advice.