May 28, 2023

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Stuffed Sweet Potato Tacos – Nutrition Twins

9 min read
Stuffed Sweet Potato Tacos - Nutrition Twins

If you crave Mexican food but always regret indulging in the typical greasy, carb-loaded take-out food that leaves you feeling heavy and bloated, you’ll love this easy-to-make, super satisfying, Stuffed Sweet Potato “Tacos”!  They make the perfect carb-lovers weekday weight loss dinner to help you lose belly fat!

As twin registered dietitians, personal trainers, and weight loss experts, we know that for these weight loss tacos to become your go-to on hectic nights, they must be a quick and easy healthy recipe, that contains the Mexican flavors you love, while also providing just the right balance of macronutrients (carbs, protein, and fat) to leave you feeling satisfied, yet light and energized.

We also added nutritional bonuses that help to kick weight loss up a notch as well as tricks to help you to prepare these tacos quickly since easy meal prep is a must to beat out ordering take-out food! You’re welcome! 😊

What makes these stuffed sweet potato tacos good for belly fat?

1. They are delicious and low-fat!

Most tacos are loaded with greasy and heavy ingredients that jack up the calories—a fried taco shell, lots of cheese and beef, as well as inflammation-provoking vegetable oils that are highly refined and that make weight loss harder. Not these stuffed sweet potato tacos!

We created a taco that tastes rich and indulgent but slashes the fat and calories, fights inflammation, and helps to stabilize blood sugar, helping your body and your metabolism to work better, as well as preventing the cravings that come from blood sugar swings that lead to snacking, overeating and weight gain, typically around the abdomen.

2. They improve blood sugar levels

Steady blood sugar is critical for your waistline as a spike would also cause a surge of insulin that would shut down fat burning for hours. Skipping the blood sugar swings also means avoiding the release of neurotransmitters like cortisol, the belly fat hormone.

This taco does all this, thanks to its perfect combination of nutrient-packed protein, carbs, and fat (from lean ground turkey, sweet potatoes, veggies, and olive oil) that provide long-lasting, even-keeled energy to fuel your metabolism.  Plus, they provide nutrients that you need for health and to be a more efficient fat-burning machine.

3. Help to eat fewer calories

Another reason these stuffed sweet potato tacos help you to lose weight and fight off belly fat is they have built-in portion control! This is important as most people are unaware of what a portion size should be and make a habit of eating the oversized, high-calorie take-out food portion they receive.

Doing these several days close together not only leads to weight gain, but also expands the stomach past its standard capacity, resulting in you not feeling as overstuffed as you once did from those take-out tacos, and needing more food to feel satisfied, ah! (Plus, overeating often causes bloating, heartburn, and sluggishness as the blood is diverted away from the brain and muscles and shuttled to the stomach for digestion. This means less energy to get off the couch or get to the gym, both lead to less energy burned and an easier time gaining weight.)

But with these stuffed sweet potato tacos, the sweet potato itself and everything stuffed in it is your portion! Even though this portion looks large and as if it would take several Mexican food take-out tacos to get that much food, our tacos have just a fraction of the calories and they’re filling, thanks to the fiber and protein that leaves you feeling satisfied, preventing overeating and the weight gain that comes with it.

And the ingredients themselves slash the calories compared to take-out tacos making them another reason they help you to lose weight all over, including your belly. Each person in the family gets one large taco or you can save some for another meal!

An interesting fact about overeating

Research has found that eating a large meal (like too many take-out tacos) can lead to weight gain and insulin resistance—even in the short term!  In young healthy adults, one day of binge eating can lead to impaired blood sugar control and insulin sensitivity.

High blood sugar over time leads to obesity and type 2 diabetes—and if you do it often, it can even lead to leptin resistance, which means that leptin, the hormone produced by your fat cells that tells you that you’re full and to stop eating, doesn’t work. We don’t want this to happen to you!

Is the oil in these stuffed sweet potato tacos good for belly fat?

One of the fat-inflating downsides of Mexican take-out food is one of the most overlooked—the refined oil that 99% of restaurants use…vegetable oils. While the calories and saturated fat in Mexican food accumulate quickly, expanding your waistline, the refined oils—corn, safflower, sunflower, soy, canola, etc., are polyunsaturated fats that are highly processed (heated to extremely high temperatures which cause the unsaturated oils to oxidize), making them highly inflammatory.

This means they wreak more havoc in your body, perpetuating inflammation and making weight loss more challenging. Pack that into a meal that is already calorie-loaded, and your belly takes the hit!

Instead, this Stuffed Sweet Potato “Taco” uses a small amount of olive oil, an anti-inflammatory oil that, even if used in larger amounts wouldn’t damage the tissues and cells and harm them in a way that makes weight gain easier. In fact, even if this recipe used a lot of olive oil, the only downside would be the calories for your waistline, as olive oil wouldn’t damage the body in a way that makes weight loss harder.

Is the “taco” shell in this recipe good if you want to lose weight?

While you may think you crave a crispy taco shell, it isn’t satisfying and creates more cravings because it has no fiber or water to fill you. Plus, it may be light and airy, but it’s packed with calories, yet you still want more since it’s not filling. With our stuffed sweet potato taco variation, even the “taco” shell, is good for your waistline.

The shell is the sweet potato itself, making it a carb-lover weight-loss dinner dream! While most people think they must shy away from carbs to lose belly fat, the truth is that with this recipe, the carbs are helpful for weight loss! In each serving, you get an entire creamy sweet potato that you can really sink your teeth in and that helps to promote fat loss.

While it’s only 100-110 calories of wholesome, fiber-filled, water-rich carbs, it’s the perfect amount to satisfy your cravings without giving you so much that you experience a food “coma”.  You won’t feel like you need to eat something else because the taco provides the right amount of wholesome carbs from the sweet potato.

How do sweet potatoes help you lose weight?

Sweet potatoes contain fiber that helps to fill you up and keep you feeling satisfied while keeping the calories in check. Plus, since they feel decadent and provide carbohydrates, you don’t feel deprived.

As registered dietitians, we find that when our clients include roughly 4 to 6 ounces of sweet potato as the wholesome carbohydrate accompanying their meal (lean protein, lots of veggies, and small amounts of fat), they feel incredibly satisfied, skirting after-meal cravings and energy dips.

This is a carb-lovers dream that supports what research shows– the sweet, creamy texture of the sweet potato satisfies the desire for sweets and carbs, while the high fiber, water-packed tuber also fills the stomach in just 100-150 low-glycemic calories, prolonging satiety, and providing excellent anti-inflammatory nutrients.

Do sweet potatoes help you to lose weight in other ways?

Sweet potatoes are packed with high amounts of anthocyanins which contribute to their antioxidant activity and anti-inflammatory actions. They fight the inflammation that causes cell damage and makes weight loss more challenging.

And they’re also chock-full of nutrients, like vitamin A (from beta carotene), vitamin C, and vitamin E, just to name a few that help to prevent the damage from inflammation that makes fighting belly fat so difficult.

Can the taco filling help you lose belly fat?

Absolutely! The sweet potato shells are filled with succulently seasoned lean ground turkey (which cuts the fat and calories significantly compared to beef tacos) and veggies that both help to extend the energy boost from the sweet potato while stabilizing blood sugar and providing satisfaction, which all important when you want to lose weight.

The spices chili, cumin powder, and smoked paprika all contain potent antioxidants that also combat the inflammation that’s associated with making weight loss harder and weight gain easier. They’re the ideal flavor enhancers since they pack a delicious and flavorful punch without adding calories, sodium or fat.

You’ll want to make these all of the time, and that’s why we made sure that this recipe is so easy that you can make it even on the most hectic nights!

What makes these tacos so fast and easy to make?

In less than a half hour (more like 15-20 minutes!) you can whip up these tacos! Here’s why—you can microwave the sweet potato in about 6 minutes and while that’s cooking, simply heat a skillet with the lean ground turkey and seasoning, which takes just minutes to cook.

Then, you’ll chop a few veggies like tomato, lettuce and bell pepper, etc., gather your other additions and slice open the sweet potato and stuff it with your ingredients, add the toppings…and dinner is served! You go, girl! 😉

What makes these tacos taste so good?

Other than an entire creamy sweet potato for each serving and the savory taco meat seasoned to perfection and topped with crispy lettuce and crunchy bell pepper, these tacos are bursting with zest and a hint of heat from Mexican-inspired spices like chili powder, cumin (that quell fat-provoking inflammation), and smoked paprika. There’s additional creaminess from a dollop of Greek yogurt that compliments and balances these tacos beautifully.

 

Stuffed Sweet Potato Tacos Recipe:

This delicious and healthy weeknight dinner is easy to make and ideal for anyone who is trying to lose weight and wants to feel like they’re still indulging in decadent food.

  • Yield: 1 portion
  • 1 small sweet potato, about 6 ounces
  • 4 oz lean ground turkey
  • 2 tbsp diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon each: chili powder, cumin, and smoked paprika
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup diced tomatoes
  • ¼ cup diced bell pepper
  • ½ cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 tablespoon nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chopped green onion
  • Olive oil in a spritzer

Instructions:

  1. Poke the sweet potato all over with a fork. Cook by either wrapping in foil and baking at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes or by placing on a plate with a splash of water and microwaving for 7-8 minutes, until tender.
  2. Heat a small skillet over medium heat with a spritz of oil. Add the onion, ground turkey, and spices. Cook, stirring to break up the turkey until the turkey is cooked through.
  3. Cut the sweet potato in half lengthwise and top with the turkey, tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, Greek yogurt, and green onion.

 

Nutrition facts per serving:

  • Calories: 330
  • Fat: 7g
  • Cholesterol: 65mg
  • Sodium: 300mg
  • Total carbohydrate: 41g
  • Fiber: 7g
  • Sugar: 11g
  • Protein: 27g
  • Vitamin A: 540% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
  • Vitamin C: 70% RDI
  • Calcium: 10% RDI

Iron: 20% RDI

Stuffed Sweet Potato Tacos

 

Author:

Recipe type: Dinner, Health Weeknight Weight Loss

Cuisine: Mexican

  • 1 small sweet potato, about 6 ounces
  • 4 oz lean ground turkey
  • 2 tbsp diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon each: chili powder, cumin, and smoked paprika
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup diced tomatoes
  • ¼ cup diced bell pepper
  • ½ cup shredded lettuce
  • 1 tablespoon nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chopped green onion
  • Olive oil in a spritzer
  1. Poke the sweet potato all over with a fork. Cook by either wrapping in foil and baking at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes or by placing on a plate with a splash of water and microwaving for 7-8 minutes, until tender.
  2. Heat a small skillet over medium heat with a spritz of oil. Add the onion, ground turkey, and spices. Cook, stirring to break up the turkey until the turkey is cooked through.
  3. Cut the sweet potato in half lengthwise and top with the turkey, tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, Greek yogurt, and green onion.

Vitamin A: 540% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
Vitamin C: 70% RDI
Calcium: 10% RDI
Iron: 20% RDI

Serving size: 1 stuffed sweet potato Calories: 330 Fat: 7 g Carbohydrates: 41 g Sugar: 7 g, 0 added sugar Sodium: 300 mg Fiber: 7 g Protein: 27 gr Cholesterol: 65 mg

3.5.3251

If you’re struggling to lose fat and you know that you’d benefit from easy recipes like these delicious and easy-to-make Carb-Lover’s Stuffed Sweet Potato Tacos, but also want to eat take-out food without feeling frustrated when your jeans feel tighter the next day…

Grab Our Free Guide—
3 Simple Secrets to Weight Loss Without Relying on Willpower.

You’ll also learn the secret to eating larger portions of the foods you crave without gaining weight.

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