# How to count carbs for a "casserole dish"?

Hey guys!

I am at a complete loss right now. I’m making one of my husbands favorite dinners tonight (it has became my favorite too) but I haven’t made this in a while and I have no clue how to count the carbs! It’s called Pork Chops in Tomato Sauce. The ingredients that have carbs are the 2 cans of tomato sauce (56 carbs total for both cans) and the 2 Tbsp of brown sugar (18 carbs total). The other ingredients do not have carbs or have >1 carbs. How would I calculate the total carbs per serving if this serves 4? Would I add up all the carbs and divide by 4? Thanks for the help!!!

• A

That is a hard one Amber. I am not that skilled in my diabetes 101 class to help you out with freelance calculations. It sounds like however the carbs is mostly in the sauce in the form of sugar. I would eat the pork chop with little to no sauce on top.

Thanks Rye! Where do you take diabetes 101 classes? Is it an online thing or is it something that is locally offered where you live? I will have to see if Tallahassee has anything like that b/c I sure could use it

When I have a recipe that I know will cause lots of SWAGing, I use websites like this one: http://caloriecount.about.com/cc/recipe_analysis.php?process=resubmit&count=3

I have had very good success with it; I just type the whole recipe in there and let it work its magic!

Holy Hannah that is amazing!!! Thank you Kate

• A

LOL…it was a joke. My constant research is my diabetes 101 class…Although I know when I was in Atlanta my endo was at Emory University and they did offer classes on how to manage that is the closest I have heard of diabetes classes myself…lol

Also I just remembered my app. I do not know what kind of phone you have but I know BlackBerry and iPhone have apps to determine how many carbs, sugar, calories and fat in anything you eat. You can eat a half of grocery store brand yogurt and they can calculate it. They also have fast food listings just in case you want some Micky D’s one day. It tracks your daily consumption for you and most of them are free.

I did a Google search for diabetic education classes and found a local facility that offers them!!! I think I might check it out but Kate also replied to this discussion and in her reply she gave me a link. You have got to check it out, it’s awesome! You type your recipe in there and it does the nutritional calculations for you! I cannot believe I haven’t found this sooner :)~

Hi Amber. Yes, I would add the total carbs, which it sounds like you’ve done and divide by 4. The only exception would be if you, as Rye suggests, choose to eat your own pork chop without sauce. Then just divide the sauce among the remaining servings. Personally, I would just skip the sugar. Many recipes add sugar but it contributes very little to the taste and you can quickly get used to the less sweet flavors. If you or your husband don’t like it without the sweetness, consider say adding some pineapple chunks instead of the sugar; for the same amount of carbs you would get some actual nutrition! I would also check the ingredients on the can of tomato sauce and see if they too have sugar. You can buy tomato sauce without sugar though it might be a bit more expensive. I’m a little puzzled that you call this a casserole. If you are serving it over rice or something don’t forget to count that which will significantly up the carb count! It always amazes me when I watch the chef on DLife make a recipe and give you the carb count and then say, “serve over rice” without counting that in!

Thanks Zoe. I have not see a sugar free or reduced sugar tomato sauce but that might be something you can only get at a health food store. One trick I have done to wing myself off of sugar is I stared out by using half sugar and half splenda. Then I gradually decreased my sugar until I was down to just the splenda. It really helped with certain things but there are some foods that I can eat without sugar and not miss it LOL The recipe I posted is not a casserole but I didn’t know what to write as the title for it to be eye catching. When I think of a casserole dish, I think of something that has all the ingredients mixed together. They are the hardest to calculate the amount of carbs for. I figured my recipe is not a casserole but it has a bunch of ingredients that you throw in a baking dish and I have no clue how to count the carbs for this dish LOL I eat my pork chops over fresh spinach leaves b/c I don’t want to take insulin for rice. My husband eats his over rice … I rather eat my carbs during lunch in the form of a wrap (HEHE) I know what you mean about the dLife chef. When I think of the total carbs of a meal that includes everything … what you serve it with in all

Sounds like you have done a good job reducing your taste for sugar, it really is something you can get used to, and for those people who eat a lot of sugar it can actually be physiologically addictive. I know because I was one of them! I haven’t eaten sugar for 17 years (except those pesty glucose tabs which I consider “medicine”). People asked me how I can do that and I tell them stopping was hell, but staying stopped is easy.

I know what you mean about dishes with a lot of ingredients being hard to carb count for. I do a lot of complicated cooking so for me it has become a habit that after I cut up each ingredient I measure it. I mark my cookbooks with the carb counts so next time I use the recipe it will be there!

As for the tomato sauce, I’m spoiled, my super market is like one giant healthfood store - minus the healthfood store prices!

I think you should totally check that class out and tell us all that you have learned…I did see Kate’s website and I have already saved it in my internet favs

WOW 17 years sugar free … that is amazing! Power to you girl!!! I have not been that strong but I get better everyday. On www.DoctorOz.com there is a “Sugar Detox Challenge” under the “Challenges” tab at the top right of the page. That has helped me with reducing my sugar. I use splenda in my coffee and I don’t eat a lot of sweet foods. I have never cared for many sweet foods or junk food for that matter. My weakness are those addicting chocolate pop tarts …lol… they are so good! I will eat one and put the other in a plastic bag b/c a serving is only one pop tart. I think it’s stupid that they put 2 in a package, that is very misleading. You are right on the mark when you say that the hardest part to not eating sugar was stoping. To actually stay stopped is the easy part. With any addiction, cutting it out and fighting those cravings is the real battle. Once they have stopped for the most part, it’s easy to keep saying no b/c you don’t want to go back to that dark place. My biggest addiction is sugar!

I have always taken good care of my health. With having cystic fibrosis aka cf (born with that one) and type 1 diabetes (since late 2003) I have had no choice but to take care of my health, otherwise I may not be here. It was never a question, it was just something I did but a few months back I quit taking care of my diabetes. For the first time in my life, I felt defeated and overwhelmed by diabetes. I didn’t understand since I wasn’t new to the whole diabetic life. Now that I have gotten back on track (and will NEVER go off track again, lessoned learned!!!) I cook almost all my meals. I love cooking and it’s much easier for me to control what I eat. I also control what goes in my food like with my salt or sugar. I don’t eat preservatives or processed foods b/c I can’t due to my cf. I can eat some frozen things like lean cuisine meals which I often take for lunch So needless to say, I am better off cooking my meals. I love the idea of marking your cook books with the carb count. I am going to do that as I cook them and I will also mark my recipe cards. Then I don’t have to figure it all out again

Sorry I wrote a novel, have a great one Zoe!

-A

hahaha That is too funny, I saved that link in my favorites as well! It will be a life saver for sure! I am calling the place that has the educational diabetic classes tomorrow. I’m excited to see if it’s something that would benefit me so I’ll keep ya posted girl

Good for you, Amber, for extracting some very positive things out of being handed the card of two major health conditions. And for sugar being your biggest addiction, it sounds like you are doing great! When I lived in Guatemala if I forgot to say “sin azucar” I would get sugar in my drink (Guatemalans love their sweets) and it tasted nauseatingly sweet to me - one sip…and I don’t want to tell you the quantities of sweets I used to eat!

I haven’t been diabetic long enough to burn out (going on four years) but it seems not uncommon. But good for you for getting back on track! That’s good that you love cooking, it makes it much easier to control diabetes and it sounds like you have a cooperative family who will eat what you cook. The only one I feed is my cat. I usually give her whatever she wants because she has always had a problem with weight loss, but I saw one brand of cat food (in my special store of course) that had brown rice as an ingredient and I wouldn’t buy that. Rice? For a cat? It just dawned on me now that I was limiting her carbs…lol

I always write books. Luckily I can’t hear the groans!

Totatoes have fructose in them which accounts for the carbs. Make sure the sauce doesn’t have any added sugar. Just look on the label. What I do when something calls for tomato sauce is I get a can of plain crushed tomatoes and just blend them in a food processor. You can add your own spices if you want. If something calls for brown sugar use the Splenda brand or just a touch of blackstrap molasses. I still make a lot of my old recipes but I tweak them to be lower carb. They actually taste better. My favorite low carb website to get ideas is Linda’s Low Carb www.genaw.com/lowcarb/

56 + 18 = 74 Divide 74 grams by 4 = 18.5 grams.

The math looks like it would be 18.5 grams per serving, but this number is deceiving because you don’t really equally divide the sauce that goes over your pork chops. Figure the volume of 2 cans + 2 tablespoons sugar. Assume your pork chop will be coated by at least 2 tablespoon of your sauce.

Example: If one can has 8 0z printed on its label, that is 16 tablespoons. So your entire recipe is 34 tablespoons. This looks like a lot but a good deal stays in the pan or even evaporates. 34 Tablespoons = 74 grams of carbs.

Next will need an algebra math formula that is very useful but seems to me not many master for everyday life.

____ Total TBS______________ = ___2 Tablespoons
Total Carbs (in whole recipe) X (unknown amt of carb)

34_ = 2____
74 X

Multiply the numbers in opposite diagonal direction.

74 X 2 = 34(X)

148 = 34(x)

148 ÷ 34 = X

X = 4.35 grams

There are 4.35 grams in 2 Tablespoons of your sauce.

I am having problems displaying it correctly for this reply box but the underlines are like the horizontal lines we use for fractions. Yes, I am a math teacher, but this isn’t the greatest way to show how to do it or why it works.

It still doesn’t display correctly. SIIIIIIIIgh. Even after I made corrections in the reply box.

2 Tablespoons should be over "X (unknown amt of carbs) NOT combine with Total Carbs in whole recipe.

34 should be over 74 and then 2 over the X NOT 74 with X.

If anyone is a computer whiz, tell me how you would get math to display properly.

Thanks for the encouragement! I believe everything happens for a reason. That saying, “You are what you eat” can also go with your attitude and outlook on life. If you have a poor attitude about your situation then everything around you will seem miserable but if you make the best out of your situation then it will show in your surroundings. There are a few quotes that I know by heart b/c they mean so much to me. I will list them below:

“Never fear shadows, they simply mean there’s a light shinning somewhere nearby.”

“Imperfections are our inspiration in disguise.”

“When you feel like giving up, remember why you held on for so long in the first place.”

“Life can only be understood backwards but must be lived forwards.”

I have a cat too! I love her so much, she has gotten me through a lot. Animals have a way of healing the soul. I don’t mind if you write me a book, I won’t groan LOL I often do the same thing I’m glad we met … keep in touch Zoe! Have a great evening.

-A

What a smart idea! I never thought about using a food processor to make my own tomato sauce … sometimes the simplest solutions are right in front of us. Thanks for advice on the brown sugar and blackstrap molasses too. I like the splenda brown sugar, I use that but I never knew about the blackstrap molasses. I am learning all sorts of helpful tips

That link you sent me with Linda’s low card recipes is great. THANK YOU

Have a great night,
-A

That really helps! It makes perfect sense … THANK YOU so much for taking the time to write all that and explain it to me. My husband is a computer programmer and he said that there isn’t anything you can do about how the browser displays the math. I hate it when that happens LOL He is making me a google spread sheet that figures that stuff out, I will send it to you if you would like Take care!

-A