Monday, February 28, 2011

5 Simple Ways To Use Stevia

Today is the last day to enter my NuNaturals NuStevia giveaway, so I thought I would share some more ideas with you on how to use stevia.  I wanted to write up proper recipes for some of these, but the truth is, they're so simple there's really no point in writing down amounts. With stevia, it's really a matter of figuring out how sweet you like your food, and playing around with recipes accordingly. I've only been using stevia for a month or so now, but I really can't say enough good things about it. I don't get the same cravings as I would with sugar-sweetened food, I don't get headaches or that awful tired feeling I used to get when I ate something with sugar, and it tastes great with pretty much everything. Of course, this is coming from me, and I am not picky when it comes to food. I know a lot of people don't like the flavor of stevia, so that's something you'll have to decide for yourself. But if you've been toying around with the idea of cutting down on (or completely cutting out) sugar, stevia has been practically a miracle for this sugar-sensitive foodie. Of course, being the cautious person I am, I'm half waiting for something horrible to come out in the news about stevia. But so far, I've only heard good things, and in general I just stick with what my body tells me anyway. Right now, my body's happy.


1. Stevia-sweetened sauteed chicken
  •  For this dish, I heat a pan over medium heat with olive oil, then add a chicken breast. On the side that's facing up, I sprinkle sea salt, pepper, and powdered stevia. I sprinkle the stevia in much the same way I would salt. Just a light dusting over the top. After 2-3 minutes, I turn the chicken breast over and add salt and pepper to the other side (and more stevia if I want it really sweet). If it's a thick chicken breast, I'll put a top on the pan and allow it to cook through. Once it's done, it's a perfect complement to a salad or steamed veggies and a sweet potato.
2.  Sweeten your tea with liquid stevia.
  • I use about 5-10 drops for this, and I actually think it tastes much better than honey ever did to me in tea. I can see why you might not want to sweeten your coffee with it, but for tea, it's the perfect flavor.
3.  Add stevia to your plain yogurt.

  • This is one of those dishes that feels like cheating to me. I stopped buying sweetened yogurt, and eventually plain yogurt started tasting almost sweet to me. But then I discovered how good it tastes with a sprinkling of powdered stevia or 5-10 drops of liquid stevia. Some chopped fruit and nuts would go wonderfully with this, or if you're like me and you mix strange things together, stir in a bunch of salad greens and make this your new way to get your raw veggies in.


 4. Stevia-sweetened sauteed fish.
  • This is not very different from the chicken idea, but I like to use liquid stevia for fish and powdered stevia for chicken. I'm not really sure why, but it tastes great so I'm sticking with it. For this meal, I added about 5 drops of liquid stevia to the pan before adding the fish, then added another 5 drops on top of the fish, along with salt and pepper. Then I just cooked it until it began to flake, and I have to tell you, this was the best meal I've had in ages. 
5. Finally, it's simple (and perhaps a bit obvious), but stevia is great for sweetening your oatmeal or hot cereal. Liquid and powder both work great...just start out with a small amount, stir and taste, then add more if needed.

So that's it. 5 simple ways to incorporate stevia into your diet. Of course, if you don't have a sweet tooth, just go without! But if you're like me, and you can't live without your sweets, it takes the place of sugar marvelously. I'm playing around with making stevia-sweetened baked goods, but it might be a while before I come up with something I like enough to share here. In the meantime, come back tomorrow to see who won the stevia giveaway, and come back later in the week for...whatever I come up with?

13 comments:

Farty Girl said...

Stevia is a godsend in green smoothies!!! It helps cover up the bitter taste of kale and spinach so well! I always forget though, that sweet tastes can add wonderfulness to savory dishes as well. So thanks! :)

Just Call Me Zippy said...

I thought I was the only one that has a fear that someone is going to say that stevia is bad! Even if they do, I'm going to keep using it. Nothing can be worse than a blood sugar crash after a sugar high or the chemical stuff. I keep the little packets in my purse to use in restaurants. One thing I like is that is will dissolve in cold drinks. I'm southern and must have sweet iced tea.;) I can't wait to see your other recipes.

Anonymous said...

I'm curious to try it but don't want to invest just to find I don't like it. I'm already gluten, dairy, and soy free...plus, I don't do sugar...and I'm low carb. Purchasing something else that I might not like is hard to get my mind around. And, like you, I keep waiting for the reports to come out saying it's got some health problems associated with it. I will try it when I get a little money ahead.
Karen T

Wanda said...

I am a huge stevia fan, but the first brand I tried had that funny after taste. I continued trying other brands and have found several that are just fine. I hope FDA approves this as a sweetner soon, I look forward to the day when I can buy a bag of stevia instead of a bag of sugar. I lost 50 pounds last year and using stevia really knocks the sugar cravings down, but lets you enjoy something sweet. I make my own yogurt and throw in some fruit and a packet of stevia every morning. Perfect way to start the day :)

Iris said...

Wanda, I've only tried two brands. I would be interested in hearing which brands you have liked and not liked...

Amy said...

I would never have thought of using stevia in chicken or fish. I will have to keep that in mind the next time I make it. my husband and I really like KAL and have pretty much only used that and the Whole Foods brand until recently when I won the NuNaturals giveaway on city life eats and now I really like them also. My husband and I found that the Whole Foods brand needed way more stevia to do the same sweetness as the KAL. i'm looking forward to more ways of using stevia!

GiGi said...

I ADORE stevia... especially NuNaturals! (You should see my kitchen pantry - it's basically NuNaturals 2nd store, ha ha ah)... I use this stuff for EVERYTHING! Because of this stuff I haven't eaten sugar in 10 years! Can you believe it, 10 years!!! I absolutely ADORE mixing it with butternut squash, pureed pumpkin, cinnamon and egg whites! This is actually what I eat for breakfast every morning and I couldn't possibly imagine a morning with out it! ha ha, so sad but so true! I also use the liquid stevia in my coffee which is scrumptious!!! I also make coffee slushies with it and oh man... it's ice cream! (top secret recipe! ha ha).

Iris said...

GiGi, I love hearing all the different ways people are using stevia. And 10 years is awesome! It's nice to know that after 10 years, you're still loving stevia and making it work for you!

ASHLEA said...

Great post on Stevia. It's definitely been a mystery to me and I like to find practical ways to use it. Never would have considered it with meat either!

Ricki said...

I realize the giveaway is over. . . but just got to this! As you probably know, I am a huge fan of stevia and have been using it since my first foray into the ACD in 1999. I was really surprised that so few people use it in savory dishes! It's always my go-to drop of sweetness in my salad dressings instead of the sugar, agave, maple syrup or whatever. I love it in oatmeall, too, and smoothies--and all desserts, of course! :)

Simply...Gluten-free said...

OK, you convinced me - I will have to give stevia another try!

Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen said...

I am a huge fan of NuNaturals stevia! I love it and I completely agree to liking it in my tea more than honey. It is so gook on roasted sweet potatoes and carrots. When I bake though, I mostly mix it with a little sugar. It lowers the sugar content without changing the flavor and it's hard to take out the sugar completely without adding the volume of something else in it's place.

Iris said...

Sarena, I agree, it's really hard to figure out how to use stevia in baking without still using some other sweetener. But I'm determined to figure it out!

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