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Restaurant Recipe Makeovers

Toni Ann DiSantis

Eating at restaurants is fun, but it can be a clean-eating nightmare. Bring the restaurant to your kitchen!  By reworking the ingredients and restructuring the recipes, you can remodel any of your favorite restaurant meals.  Each of these recipes is gluten-free, contains no added sugar, and comes complete with zero guilt. They're all 175 calories or fewer and packed with all-natural, nutrient-dense ingredients. Your healthy diet does not mean you'll be stuck with microscopic portions of bland food.



Serving Size: 4 Shrimp

Calories: 168, Fat: 3.5g, Carbs: 8.7g, Protein: 22.2g

  • 3 egg whites
  • 2 tbsp Stevia
  • 6 rounded tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 24 raw, peeled tail-on shrimp
  • 3 rounded tbsp corn starch
  • 4 tbsp sugar-free orange marmalade
  • 1/2 tsp Sriracha chili sauce (use 1 tsp for spicier sauce)
  • Water


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Whip egg whites until stiff peaks form.
  3. In a separate bowl, add Stevia to unsweetened coconut flakes and mix well.
  4. One at a time, coat shrimp in cornstarch, then coat in whipped egg whites.
  5. Coat the shrimp in coconut flakes, and place on parchment paper or a silicone baking sheet.
  6. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes, turning over after about 7 minutes. Because there is no flour on the shrimp, they will not turn golden brown like a typical breaded shrimp. When they are done, the coconut will be toasted and the tail will be pink.
  7. While the shrimp are in the oven, mix marmalade with Sriracha. More chili sauce will give it more heat. Add a little water to thin out the dipping sauce.




Serving Size: 4 oz

Calories: 169, Fat 3.7g, Carbs: 7g, Protien: 24g 

For the Chicken:

  • 1-1/2 cup crisp rice cereal
  • 1/4 cup dried minced onion
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground red pepper
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tbsp water
  • 20 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed of fat and cut into strips
  • Olive oil spray


  • 1 tbsp nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp Stevia or Splenda


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Place cereal in a bag. Use a rolling pin or can to crush into small pieces. Be careful not to turn it into a powder.
  3. Place crushed cereal in a large bowl and add onion, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
  4. In a separate bowl, mix the egg whites and water, and stir well.
  5. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel.
  6. Dip a piece of chicken into the egg whites and allow the excess to run off.
  7. Dip chicken in the cereal mixture. Press down to help it stick. Coat thoroughly.
  8. Place chicken on a baking sheet and lightly spray each piece with olive oil spray.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 min. Flip the chicken and spray lightly. Bake another 8-10 min.
  10. As chicken bakes, mix together Greek yogurt, mustard, and sweetener to make dipping sauce.



Serving Size: 1/12 of Recipe

Calories: 120, Fat: 1g, Carbs 3g, Protein: 22g

  • 6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 whole large onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups salsa
  • 1/4 cup red chili peppers (optional)


  1. Serving Size: 1/12 of Recipe
  2. Calories: 120, Fat: 1g, Carbs 3g, Protein 22g 
  3. Put all ingredients in the slow cooker, and mix by folding them over a few times.
  4. Set the cooker for at least 4 hours or more.
  5. When it's finished, stir the contents. The chicken should fall apart without much effort on your part. This is a sign it is done.
  6. Serve over black rice with a little avocado and lime juice.



Serving size: one burger with one bun

Calories: 149, Fat: 5.5g, Carbs: 11.2, Protein: 15.5g

  • 2 large eggplants
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • Olive oil
  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup diced shallots
  • 1/2 cup diced bell pepper
  • 2 tbsp of milled flaxseed
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic


While eggplant cooks, combine turkey, egg whites, flaxseed, bell peppers, shallots, and garlic in a bowl. Mix well.

Form 7 patties from the meat and place them on a cookie sheet.

Broil patties about 8 inches from heat until they are slightly brown. Flip over and broil another 5-7 minutes. You can also grill them if you prefer, but I find they hold together better on the cookie sheet.

Place a patty between two slices of eggplant. Add condiments of your choice, but keep in mind they will add calories not calculated in my total.