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Crockpot Salsa Chicken

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I totally made this recipe by mistake. And it just might be the easiest damn thing I’ve ever made. AND it tastes SO good! Don’t you love it when that happens? It’s like all of the stars just align in your favor some days, right?

Over Thanksgiving, my family was in town. Yes, I hosted. For the first time ever, I might add. And it really turned out great! I was (still am 🙂 ) super proud of myself. I did have some good help from my family…

But all of that to say – the Friday after Thanksgiving, we had one of my favorite Mexican food restaurants cater for us… We were done with the cooking.

My Uncle was in charge of ordering the catering and we always know when he’s in charge of something, it will be over the top! He always goes above and beyond and that means there is NEVER a lack of ANYTHING!

You can see where this is going, right? Yep – we had ALLLL the leftovers! …not just from Thanksgiving, but now from the Mexican restaurant! And, Mo and I are the only ones who live in Dallas out of this side of my family so we ended up with ALL of it!

I really dislike letting food go to waste, so I decided I’d test myself and come up with something yummy to make with all of it! We ended up with:

  • Guacamole
  • a bunch-o-Salsa
  • a bunch-o-chopped onion and fresh cilantro
  • Roasted Brussels Sprouts

So came the birth of this recipe! …minus the brussels sprouts! I just made a few extra of those and we had them as a little side instead of chips! 🙂

Y’all!! It took me less than 5 minutes to put this together and it was SO stinkin’ good!

So, next time you’re in a pinch and need something super quick and healthy – make this your new go-to!

Hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Crockpot Salsa Chicken

Serves: 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 3lbs organic chicken breasts
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • ½ bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 20oz jarred salsa
  • avocado, to garnish
  • fresh chives, to garnish
  • roasted cauliflower rice (optional)

Directions:

  • Pull out your crockpot.
  • Add your chicken breasts.
  • Then add the rest of the ingredients on top, in any order. Stir to combine.
  • Put on low for 5-6 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
  • After it’s done cooking, use two forks to shred the chicken.
  • Serve in big bowls on top of roasted cauliflower rice (optional) and top with cilantro and sliced avocado.

 

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Instructions
  1. Pull out your crockpot.
  2. Add your chicken breasts.
  3. Then add the rest of the ingredients on top, in any order. Stir to combine.
  4. Put on low for 5-6 hours or high for 3-4 hours.
  5. After it’s done cooking, use two forks to shred the chicken.
  6. Serve in big bowls on top of roasted cauliflower rice (optional) and top with cilantro and sliced avocado.
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Clean Eating White Chicken Chili

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IT’S COLD IN TEXAS!!! And by cold I mean, lows in the 50’s! Which is cold for us! And I am LOVING it!

I am always SO ready for it to be cold by the end of the summer and by the end of winter, I’m REALLY ready for warm weather! But, I LOVE everything that comes along with cold weather – the holidays, lighting the fireplace, hot chocolate, hearty soups and stews and making chili’s like this one!

This chili is incredibly easy to make – takes about 10 minutes or less of actual prep and then you let it stew in the pot for 20 minutes, up to a few hours. And the best part? It is even better as leftovers! I love making this on a Sunday and then we get to have it for leftovers for lunch for the next few days at the start of the week! …meal prep 101!

The beans in this recipe technically knock it off of the Paleo list, but if you’re not strict Paleo, then go for it! Or, add 2 diced zucchini in lieu of the beans…

And it’s GREAT with all of the garnishes I have listed in the ingredients! We love chili’s piled high with lots of “stuff”! But, you may not… Suit yourself. Don’t say I didn’t warn you! 😉

AND, if you’re into the cornbread thing – my Clean Eating Cornbread Muffins are the PERFECT pair with this (or any chili, soup or stew)!

Hope you enjoy as much as we do!

Clean Eating White Chicken Chili

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 2lbs ground chicken breast
  • 1 tbsp olive or avocado oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño or serrano pepper, stem and most seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2, 15oz cans white cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2, 4oz cans chopped green chilies
  • 1-2 cups chicken bone broth or low sodium chicken/vegetable stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (less if you prefer it less spicy…)
  • sea salt to taste
  • fresh cilantro, leaves only (optional garnish)
  • chives or scallion, thinly sliced (optional garnish)
  • 1 avocado, pitted, peeled, and chopped (optional garnish)
  • fresh pico or salsa (optional garnish)
  • goat cheese (optional garnish)

Directions

  • Heat oil in a large skillet on medium heat, place the onion into the skillet and cook, stirring often, until softened – approx. 5 minutes.
  • Place the chopped jalapeno/serrano and garlic in with the onion and cook one more minute, until garlic is fragrant.
  • Push vegetables to the sides of the skillet and add in the ground chicken. Break up into desired pieces and let brown on one side for 3-4 minutes, toss and cook until almost cooked through – another 3-4 minutes. Combine with the vegetables, add green chilies and beans along with stock, bay leaf and another pinch of salt and stir to combine.
  • Bring to a low boil and turn to heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, up to 1 hour until the chili has thickened.
  • Ladle the chili into bowls and garnish with goat cheese, cilantro, fresh pico de gallo or salsa, chopped chives or scallion, and/or avocados.
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  1. Heat oil in a large skillet on medium heat, place the onion into the skillet and cook, stirring often, until softened – approx. 5 minutes.
  2. Place the chopped jalapeno/serrano and garlic in with the onion and cook one more minute, until garlic is fragrant.
  3. Push vegetables to the sides of the skillet and add in the ground chicken. Break up into desired pieces and let brown on one side for 3-4 minutes, toss and cook until almost cooked through – another 3-4 minutes. Combine with the vegetables, add green chilies and beans along with stock, bay leaf and another pinch of salt and stir to combine.
  4. Bring to a low boil and turn to heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, up to 1 hour until the chili has thickened.
  5. Ladle the chili into bowls and garnish with goat cheese, cilantro, fresh pico de gallo or salsa, chopped chives or scallion, and/or avocados.
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Paleo One-Skillet Tomato Basil Chicken

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I come from a long line of crazy Italians and I LOVE Italian food! No surprise there, given my heritage – but, probably some surprise due to my predominantly grain-free lifestyle.

A little story about me as a little girl… Growing up, my very favorite breakfast was cheese tortellini with butter and lots of salt and pepper. Man, I can taste it as I type this! I don’t tend towards this breakfast now, as most of you who follow me know! 🙂 And not that I would be opposed – but it’s interesting, taste buds change. Not only between growing up from a kid to an adult – but as we eat differently, taste buds will change. Did you know that?

You can eat a certain way your whole life and then change your habits and your body will begin to CRAVE the new things you feed it. This works both ways of course – you could go from eating a very clean “diet” to perhaps going off the rails for several days (think: the holidays) OR you could go from eating a highly processed “diet” to eating a very clean “diet” — either way, you will teach your taste buds (and your brain) what to crave.

So, while I LOVE pasta with butter and man – how many times have I had Fettucini Alfredo?! 🙂 I just don’t genuinely CRAVE those things anymore. Not that they are bad AT ALL – but, in moderation.

So, this is my way of satisfying my Italian craving, while still maintaining little to no grains.

Please hear me clearly here: GRAINS are NOT bad – this goes for pasta too! In a perfect world, we would have 100% access to sprouted grains all the time… So, when I do eat grains, I try very hard to be sure they are sprouted. I’ve simply learned that I feel far better when I do this vs not caring. So when I say that we eat a predominantly grain-free “diet” – this is why. Not because I think they are bad for you. Just wanted to clarify this small but significant point. 🙂

I served this with a small herb salad – butter lettuce, spinach, cilantro leaves, chives, a few shavings of raw manchego and tossed with evoo and balsamic vinegar and my “cheesy” roasted cauliflower! It was de-lish!!

Hope you enjoy!

Paleo One-Skillet Tomato Basil Chicken

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs chicken tenders
  • avocado oil cooking spray
  • 1 ½lbs cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 8-10 fresh basil leaves, julienned
  • 1 – 2 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 – 2 tbsp paprika
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper (optional)

Directions:

  • Spray a large non-stick skillet with avocado oil cooking spray and place over medium heat.
  • Season both sides of the chicken tenders with oregano, paprika, salt and black pepper.
  • Place chicken into pan (you don’t want to crowd the pan, otherwise the chicken will steam and not get that yummy crust, so you may have to do this in two batches) and cook approximately 4 minutes on each side, or until chicken is almost entirely cooked through (a meat thermometer reads 155 degrees F).
  • Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
  • Add the tomatoes and garlic into the pan with a little salt and cook for approximately 5 minutes until tomatoes are softened completely and the liquid from the tomatoes has reduced a bit.
  • Add chicken back into the pan and coat with the sauce.
  • Add in basil and stir to combine.
  • Turn heat to lowest setting and let simmer for another 5 minutes or until ready to serve.
  • Just before serving, squeeze half lemon over the top of the chicken.
  • Serve with cauliflower rice, cauliflower mash or roasted heirloom potatoes!

 

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Instructions
  1. Spray a large non-stick skillet with avocado oil cooking spray and place over medium heat.
  2. Season both sides of the chicken tenders with oregano, paprika, salt and black pepper.
  3. Place chicken into pan (you don’t want to crowd the pan, otherwise the chicken will steam and not get that yummy crust, so you may have to do this in two batches) and cook approximately 4 minutes on each side, or until chicken is almost entirely cooked through (a meat thermometer reads 155 degrees F).
  4. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
  5. Add the tomatoes and garlic into the pan with a little salt and cook for approximately 5 minutes until tomatoes are softened completely and the liquid from the tomatoes has reduced a bit.
  6. Add chicken back into the pan and coat with the sauce.
  7. Add in basil and stir to combine.
  8. Turn heat to lowest setting and let simmer for another 5 minutes or until ready to serve.
  9. Just before serving, squeeze half lemon over the top of the chicken.
  10. Serve with cauliflower rice, cauliflower mash or roasted heirloom potatoes!
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Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs with Roasted Cauliflower Rice

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We LOVE curry at the Brossette’s. It’s one of our favorite flavors. Good thing too because it is full of anti-inflammatory benefits!

Sometimes I have no clue where I come up with ideas for recipes. I used to hate my appetite. A battle with anorexia will do that to a person. I used to get so frustrated that I craved things and was hungry for food… That food was (still is, duh!) important to me. I just wanted to be that person who “didn’t care about food” – you know, the people who “forget to eat lunch…” Ha! I will NEVER forget to eat a meal. Never. And I used to really dislike that about myself.

Now? I lean into that. I LOVE that I crave things and I REALLY love that when I allow myself to have said craving, I usually don’t crave it anymore for a while. Hence, moderation. Too much of ANY thing – even spinach – is not good. And our bodies know this. It’s so beautiful to me – if we allow our bodies to work like they are intended to and we lean into the things we crave without over-doing or under-doing – we will naturally be exactly what we’re supposed to be in terms of aesthetics. It’s when we start forcing our bodies to become an idea that WE have in our heads as to what we WANT to look like that things start going haywire.

This is why we, at LINK Endurance, coach nutrition the way we do… It’s a long, slow process but one that will bring you to what I described above.

Ok, so what does all of that have to do with Coconut Curry Meatballs? Well, not a whole lot honestly, except that to say, I woke up one day CRAVING curry but I also wanted meatballs. I wanted something saucy and filling and full of flavor. It’s the Italian in me coming out, I’m sure. So – that is where these meatballs came from.

I adapted a recipe from Randa at The Bewitchin Kitchen, as I’d never made a dish quite like this before. I mean, I’ve made curries and I’ve made meatballs of course, but have never put the two together. So I leaned on her for some inspiration and a jumping off point!

I must say, she and I would make a great team if we could come up with a recipe THIS good every time!

These meatballs are incredibly easy to make, the sauce culdn’t be simpler and the cauliflower rice – well, it’s easy, yes, but roasting it gives it SO. MUCH. FLAVOR! It’s the only way I make cauliflower rice these days! And! The leftover meatballs are JUST as good, if not better the next day!

Hope you enjoy as much as we do!

Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs with Roasted Cauliflower Rice

Makes approx. 28 meatballs… Serves 4-5 people…

Ingredients for the Meatballs:

  • avocado oil cooking spray
  • 2 large carrots, roughly chopped
  • 2 large shallots, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp cilantro leaves
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 5-6 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp red chili flakes
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1lb ground chicken breast
  • several cilantro leaves or julienned basil, for garnish (optional)

Ingredients for the Sauce:

  • 1 ¾ cans coconut milk (light or full fat)
  • 2 heaping tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 ½ tbsp almond butter
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 ¼ tsp salt

Ingredients for the Cauliflower Rice:

  • 2-3, 10oz bags pre-riced Cauliflower (fresh or frozen)***
  • salt and black pepper
  • coconut aminos (optional)***

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line two large sheet pans with foil or parchment paper. Spray both with avocado oil cooking spray and set one aside and pour the bags of cauliflower rice onto the other one and spread out evenly – spray the top with additional avocado oil cooking spray and a few dashes of salt (unless using the coconut aminos after roasting – see notes) and a few pinches of black pepper. Toss to combine and set aside.
  • Place all of the ingredients for the meatballs (except the chicken and cilantro/basil garnish leaves) into a food processor and pulse until chopped and combined.
  • Pour mixture into a large bowl along with the ground chicken. Mix well with a spatula or your hands.
  • Roll into 1 ½ – 2″ balls and place them onto lined sheet pan.***
  • Bake for 10 minutes on the middle rack of your oven, roll the meatballs over and bake them for an additional 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
  • Place the cauliflower rice onto the top rack of your oven when you put the meatballs in and let roast 10 minutes, toss and then place on the bottom rack of your oven and let roast another 5-10 minutes. Once you pull the meatballs out, just leave turn your oven off and leave the cauliflower rice in the oven to stay warm until ready to serve – just be sure it’s on the bottom rack at this point.
  • While the meatballs are baking, make the sauce by heating the coconut milk over medium heat in a large skillet.
  • Add the remaining ingredients for the sauce and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring until combined and the almond butter is melted.
  • Add the meatballs to the sauce, stir them around to coat them with the sauce and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  • Serve over roasted cauliflower rice with fresh cilantro and/or basil on top.

Notes:

  • If you buy frozen cauliflower rice, thaw before roasting and drain any excess water before placing on the sheet pan.
  • I like to toss my cauliflower rice with several dashes of coconut aminos as soon as I take it out of the oven. It just gives it more umami/flavor! Not a must, but definitely recommended! If you do this – do not add salt prior to roasting.
  • When making the meatballs, I suggest using a small ice cream scoop to scoop out the meatball mixture so you ensure each meatball is close to the same size and therefore cooks evenly.

Recipe adapted from Randa at thebewitchinkitchen.com…

 

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Ingredients for the Meatballs
Ingredients for the Caulifower Rice
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Course Dinner, Main Dish
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Ingredients for the Meatballs
Ingredients for the Caulifower Rice
Ingredients for the Sauce
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Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line two large sheet pans with foil or parchment paper. Spray both with avocado oil cooking spray and set one aside and pour the bags of cauliflower rice onto the other one and spread out evenly – spray the top with additional avocado oil cooking spray and several dashes of salt and a few pinches of black pepper. Toss to combine and set aside.
  2. Place all of the ingredients for the meatballs (except the chicken and cilantro/basil garnish leaves) into a food processor and pulse until chopped and combined.
  3. Pour mixture into a large bowl along with the ground chicken. Mix well with a spatula or your hands.
  4. Roll into 1 ½ – 2″ balls and place them onto lined sheet pan.***
  5. Bake for 10 minutes on the middle rack of your oven, roll the meatballs over and bake them for an additional 5-10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
  6. Place the cauliflower rice onto the top rack of your oven when you put the meatballs in and let roast 10 minutes, toss and then place on the bottom rack of your oven and let roast another 5-10 minutes. Once you pull the meatballs out, just leave turn your oven off and leave the cauliflower rice in the oven to stay warm until ready to serve – just be sure it’s on the bottom rack at this point.
  7. While the meatballs are baking, make the sauce by heating the coconut milk over medium heat in a large skillet.
  8. Add the remaining ingredients for the sauce and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring until combined and the almond butter is melted.
  9. Add the meatballs to the sauce, stir them around to coat them with the sauce and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  10. Serve over roasted cauliflower rice with fresh cilantro and/or basil on top.
Recipe Notes

If you buy frozen cauliflower rice, thaw before roasting and drain any excess water before placing on the sheet pan. I like to toss my cauliflower rice with several dashes of coconut aminos as soon as I take it out of the oven. It just gives it more umami/flavor! Not a must, but definitely recommended! When making the meatballs, I suggest using a small ice cream scoop to scoop out the meatball mixture so you ensure each meatball is close to the same size and therefore cooks evenly.

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Hatch Green Chile Chicken Lettuce Tacos

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It’s HATCH season!! …one of my favs! I really love spicy foods – which is interesting because I’ve grown into that somehow. I have a client who LOVES jalapenos! Every time I ask him about what he’s eaten there are always jalapenos involved. So I put them on a salad one day and fell in love! Ever since, I’ve been a spice queen.

Unfortunately the same is not true for Mo! Ha! Poor guy – I’ve definitely, on accident – truly – smoked him out before. It’s kind of funny though because we’ll be eating and I’ll look over and he’s literally sweating bullets. I am laughing just thinking about it! He’s such a trooper though! So without fail, he always ends up picking out the jalapenos or hatch peppers and putting them on my plate! Spice and funky cheeses are about the only two things he’ll turn his nose up at – otherwise, he’s truly the easiest person in the world to cook for!

You can buy Hatch Chilies hot or mild. For this recipe, I used one hot and one mild. I honestly didn’t find it to be that spicy. But if you’re sensitive to spice at all, I would stick with only mild. And if you’re not senstive to spice, I would do two of the hot ones!

Hatch season only lasts about 2 months, so I try to take as much advantage as I can. Many people will roast huge batches and then freeze them to use throughout the year! I’ve never tried that but if I get the time this year I might! They are absolutely delicious and add so much flavor to foods! And I’m always down for anything hanging on the verge of tasting like tex-mex!

I also like to add these to burgers and salads for some added punch!

Hope you enjoy!

Hatch Green Chile Chicken Lettuce Tacos

Makes 10-12 tacos…

Ingredients:

  • 2 roasted hatch green chilies, halved and julienned***
  • 2 tsp avocado oil or avocado oil cooking spray
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, julienned
  • 1lb ground chicken
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • Real Salt, to taste
  • 10-12 pieces butter lettuce***
  • 3-4 tbsp grated raw manchego or crumbled goat cheese

Directions:

  • First, roast the hatch chilies. While they cool, make the remaining ingredients.
  • Pour the avocado oil into a large sauté pan and swirl the pan to coat (or spray with avocado oil cooking spray). Turn heat to medium; once warm place the bell peppers into the pan with a pinch of salt. Let cook until softened and slightly caramelized – approx. 8-10 minutes.
  • Then, move the bell pepper to the sides of the pan and place the ground chicken in the middle and break up with a wooden spoon. Let cook 2 minutes and then continue to break apart and stir. Add cumin through salt and stir to combine the chicken, bell peppers and seasonings. Be sure chicken is cooked through but breaking apart a larger piece and making sure it is white/not pink in the middle. Remove from heat and add in hatch chilies. Toss to combine.
  • Spoon chicken and pepper mixture into lettuce pieces in desired amounts.
  • Top with grated manchego or goat cheese crumbles and serve.

Notes:

  • If Hatch Chiles are not in season, feel free to substitute with 1 fresh Jalapeño – remove the seeds and ribs if you don’t want it to be too spicy…
  • During Hatch season (August – October) you can find Hatch Chiles already roasted. Central Market is great about this. But, if you want to roast your own, click the link in the Ingredients section and you will be taken to the directions I use for roasting my own.
  • Feel free to use romaine, green leaf, red leaf, kale, etc. in lieu of butter lettuce, if you prefer.
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  1. First, roast the hatch chilies. While they cool, make the remaining ingredients.
  2. Pour the avocado oil into a large sauté pan and swirl the pan to coat (or spray with avocado oil cooking spray). Turn heat to medium; once warm place the bell peppers into the pan with a pinch of salt. Let cook until softened and slightly caramelized – approx. 8-10 minutes.
  3. Then, move the bell pepper to the sides of the pan and place the ground chicken in the middle and break up with a wooden spoon. Let cook 2 minutes and then continue to break apart and stir. Add cumin through salt and stir to combine the chicken, bell peppers and seasonings. Be sure chicken is cooked through but breaking apart a larger piece and making sure it is white/not pink in the middle. Remove from heat and add in hatch chilies. Toss to combine.
  4. Spoon chicken and pepper mixture into lettuce pieces in desired amounts.
  5. Top with grated manchego or goat cheese crumbles and serve.
Recipe Notes

If Hatch Chiles are not in season, feel free to substitute with 1 fresh Jalapeño – remove the seeds and ribs if you don’t want it to be too spicy... During Hatch season (August - October) you can find Hatch Chiles already roasted. Central Market is great about this. But, if you want to roast your own, click the link in the Ingredients section and you will be taken to the directions I use for roasting my own. Feel free to use romaine, green leaf, red leaf, kale, etc. in lieu of butter lettuce, if you prefer.

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Chilled Cucumber Soup

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We love and abide by seasonal eating. When you eat seasonally, it is more flavorful, less expensive and naturally more nutritious.

Think about it: when it’s cold outside, don’t you want heavier, more warming foods like stews, casseroles, root vegetables, etc? And when it’s hot outside, it is the exact opposite… We grab for fresh fruits and raw vegetables… Chilled soups and Gazpachos… Citrus and lighter foods… Nothing that will weigh us down… Not to be a drama queen, but heat can feel really oppressive, you know? 🙂

If you’ve been following along, you know that we live in Dallas. TEXAS. And I only add the emphasis on Texas as to drive home the fact that it is the beginning of July and frankly – it is hotter than absolute hell. You know when you get ready to go have a nice dinner or go to work and walk outside and literally, within seconds, start sweating? Yup. It’s been that way here for the last 2 1/2 months already… And we’re not even to the halfway mark yet.

That being said, anything cold and refreshing sounds amazing. Hence my Chilled Cucumber Soup. This is not a Paleo or dairy free recipe but easily could be by substituting the greek yogurt with a plain coconut milk yogurt.

My absolute favorite part about this recipe is that it comes together in literally 10 minutes and there is absolutely no cooking involved! None! Zip! Nada! No heat in the kitchen whatsoever. And right now… That is such a blessing and frankly, totally necessary!

So, for those of you that live in SoCal and have one season of absolute beautiful all year, please feel for those of us across the rest of the country, sweltering!

Hope you enjoy!

Chilled Cucumber Soup

Approx. 3 servings, about 1.5 cups each

Ingredients:

  • 1 hothouse cucumber, seeded and roughly diced
  • 1 ½ cups 2% or full fat plain greek yogurt*
  • 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed
  • 1 bunch fresh dill, stems removed
  • 1 cup light canned coconut milk
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • juice of 1 lemon

Directions:

  • Place the cucumber, yogurt, shallot, garlic, dill, coconut milk, a good pinch of salt and pepper into a food processor or high powered blender and blend until desired consistency.
  • Pour into a large bowl, cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight, prior to serving.
  • When ready to serve, stir in lemon juice and adjust seasonings if needed and pour into soup bowls and serve!

Notes:

  • Sub with plain coconut milk yogurt if Paleo or vegan/dairy free.
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  1. Place the cucumber, yogurt, shallot, garlic, dill, coconut milk, a good pinch of salt and pepper into a food processor or high powered blender and blend until desired consistency.
  2. Pour into a large bowl, cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight, prior to serving.
  3. When ready to serve, stir in lemon juice and adjust seasonings if needed and pour into soup bowls and serve!
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Strawberry Balsamic Summer Salad with Grilled Lemon Chicken

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Can you tell I’m on a strawberry kick? I think this is my second post in a row centered around strawberries! What can I say? It’s screaming hot in Dallas right now and anything “citrusy” and refreshing sounds amazing!

And, when I can make a meal without having to turn the oven on or stand over the stove, COUNT. ME. IN!

I know you’ve read my salad schpeal before so I’ll keep this short for anyone who hasn’t read previous salad posts… I LOVE salad. Would eat it almost daily. But I don’t just love any salad, I love BIG salads that have lots of ingredients and textures and feel like a meal vs bird food. THAT is a salad in my book!

And this recipe will not disappoint that criteria. This recipe was actually started by Mo and then I swooped in and amp’d it up a bit.

We really believe in eating seasonally and we practice coaching out clients the same way. When you eat seasonally you get far more nutrition out of the food and you’re body is able to operate cyclically. Meaning, when you begin to pay attention to eating per the season, you will notice that you will crave lighter, brighter foods in the spring and summer months and heavier, more rich foods in the fall and winter months. Unless of course you live in SoCal and you have one season per year. Okay, okay, maybe one and a half. 😉

This salad recipe is super quick to make and is so refreshing and light. It is perfect for the hotter months!

If you’re practicing strict Paleo, feel free to sub the couscous with cauliflower rice. I offer directions on how to cook the cauliflower rice in the Notes section.

Hope you enjoy!

Strawberry Balsamic Summer Salad with Grilled Lemon Chicken

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 free range boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 large lemon, zest and juice
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • ¾ cup dry couscous*
  • ½ large container pre-washed baby spinach
  • 8-10 fresh strawberries, leaves removed and sliced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 2-3 tbsp crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/3 cup walnuts, halved and toasted
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

  • Place chicken breasts into a large Ziploc bag with the lemon zest and juice, paprika and a good pinch or two of salt and pepper. Seal the bag, toss well to coat the chicken and place in the fridge to marinate for 30 minutes, up to overnight.
  • When you’re ready to make the couscous and put the salad together, get the chicken out of the fridge and place a grill pan sprayed with avocado oil cooking spray over medium heat. Once hot but not smoking, place the chicken breasts onto the pan and grill for approx. 5 minutes per side or until a meat thermometer reads 160 degrees F.
  • While the chicken is grilling, make the couscous. In a medium pot, combine 1 cup filtered water and a good pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and then stir in couscous (do not just dumb the couscous in without stirring or it will all clump together – stir as you pour it in…). Cover, remove from heat immediately and set aside for 5 minutes. Uncover, gently fluff with a fork and set aside until ready to assemble the salad.
  • While the couscous is cooking, place the spinach, sliced strawberries, avocado and goat cheese into a large salad bowl. Pour approx. ½ cup of the cooked couscous (while still warm) on top. Top with a good drizzle of olive oil and balsamic, salt and pepper to taste and toss gently to combine.
  • Slice the chicken and place on top or dice into bite-sized pieces and toss with the salad. Serve!

Notes:

  • To make this Paleo, sub couscous with approx. 1 1/2 cups uncooked cauliflower rice – saute in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until softened and slightly browned.
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Instructions
  1. Place chicken breasts into a large Ziploc bag with the lemon zest and juice, paprika and a good pinch or two of salt and pepper. Seal the bag, toss well to coat the chicken and place in the fridge to marinate for 30 minutes, up to overnight.
  2. When you’re ready to make the couscous and put the salad together, get the chicken out of the fridge and place a grill pan sprayed with avocado oil cooking spray over medium heat. Once hot but not smoking, place the chicken breasts onto the pan and grill for approx. 5 minutes per side or until a meat thermometer reads 160 degrees F.
  3. While the chicken is grilling, make the couscous. In a medium pot, combine 1 cup filtered water and a good pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and then stir in couscous (do not just dumb the couscous in without stirring or it will all clump together – stir as you pour it in…). Cover, remove from heat immediately and set aside for 5 minutes. Uncover, gently fluff with a fork and set aside until ready to assemble the salad.
  4. While the couscous is cooking, place the spinach, sliced strawberries, avocado and goat cheese into a large salad bowl. Pour approx. ½ cup of the cooked couscous (while still warm) on top. Top with a good drizzle of olive oil and balsamic, salt and pepper to taste and toss gently to combine.
  5. Slice the chicken and place on top or dice into bite-sized pieces and toss with the salad. Serve!
Recipe Notes

To make this Paleo, sub couscous with approx. 1 1/2 cups uncooked cauliflower rice - saute in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until softened and slightly browned.

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Blood Orange Summer Salad

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Salad’s can be boring. We get it. But when it is 7000 degrees in Dallas (not really, obviously – but good-ness it feels like it!) and the LAST thing you want is something hot to eat – salad’s can make the perfect meal! That’s right… To all my manly men out there – I just referred to a salad as a “meal…”

When Mo and I first met and I offered to make dinner and told him we were going to have “a big salad…” he almost broke up with me right there on the spot. (Look what he’d be missing out on today! Ha! 🙂 ) Nevertheless, he indulged me and all but licked his bowl clean. This girl can make a mean salad… And one that does not leave you feeling like you just ate “rabbit food…”

The key is loading it up with different textures and temperatures and then tossing it with a really yummy dressing.

First you’ve got to start with really good greens – none of this iceberg lettuce crap. I’m talking spinach, arugula, kale, mixed baby lettuces, mache, etc. Anything but iceberg!

Then, you pick out your protein – be it salmon, as on this salad, or perhaps roasted chicken, ground beef or bison, if you’re vegan – maybe some tempeh… And season whatever you choose really well! THIS is key!

Now lets talk temperatures – I love to toss a salad with some vegetables (anything in season) I’ve just roasted or a just cooked protein source – this way the warmth from the cooked item gently wilts the greens… I know this may sound odd but THIS is what brings the whole salad together and makes it really feel like a true meal vs just greens and vegetables on a plate.

So you have the crisp from the greens, the warmth from the vegetables and/or protein and now we need something chilled that when you bite into it along with the greens and protein creates this awesome experience in your mouth… Stop! Get your minds out of the gutter! I’m talking about FOOD! 😉 This is where avocado or fruit, like the blood oranges in this salad come into play…

Now the dressing… It really depends on what season we’re in for me. So, if it’s cold outside and I am craving greens but want something really hearty – I will make a creamy dressing with Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil Mayo as the base. If it’s hotter than hell outside and I want anything BUT hearty – I will simply use good extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil and either with a vinegar – red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar or my fav: apple cider vinegar.

Last but absolutely not least – something crunchy – this should go on the salad after you’ve dressed it so that it doesn’t get the crunchy item soggy. I love to toast up sourdough croutons or roast some chickpeas or black beans. Toasted pumpkin seeds or almonds, pecans, cashews, etc. are great too! In this salad, the crunch actually comes from the way I cooked the salmon – because it is seared, it gets this wonderful crust! Mmmm… It’s SO good! You could also make your own tortilla chips by slicing up Ezekiel brand Sprouted Corn Tortillas or Siete brand Almond Flour or Coconut Flour Tortillas and toasting in the oven to get them crisp!

See? Salads don’t have to be boring! They are AWESOME if you follow these steps!

Now make this one and you can thank me later! 😉

Enjoy!!!

Blood Orange, Avocado & Goat Cheese Salad with Salmon

Serves 1

Ingredients:

  • 5-7oz wild caught salmon, skin on
  • 2 tsp ghee butter
  • 3-4 handfuls raw spinach, arugula or mixed greens
  • 2 tbsp crumbled goat cheese
  • ½ small avocado, diced
  • ½ blood orange, segments only
  • 1-2 tbsp chopped chives
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste

Directions:

  • Heat ghee butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season top of salmon with salt and pepper. Once ghee is melted, place salmon into the skillet skin-side-up. Let cook for 4 minutes and then flip and cook another 3-4 minutes, based on preferred doneness.
  • While the salmon is cooking, place the orange segments into the bottom of a large bowl (this is so the juice does not make the greens soggy) and then place greens, goat cheese, avocado and chives on top. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle olive oil and vinegar over the top. Toss gently to combine.
  • To serve, place salad onto a plate or bowl. Gently peel skin of salmon off and place on top of prepared salad, skin-side-down.
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Instructions
  1. Heat ghee butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season top of salmon with salt and pepper. Once ghee is melted, place salmon into the skillet skin-side-up. Let cook for 4 minutes and then flip and cook another 3-4 minutes, based on preferred doneness.
  2. While the salmon is cooking, place the orange segments into the bottom of a large bowl (this is so the juice does not make the greens soggy) and then place greens, goat cheese, avocado and chives on top. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle olive oil and vinegar over the top. Toss gently to combine.
  3. To serve, place salad onto a plate or bowl. Gently peel skin of salmon off and place on top of prepared salad, skin-side-down.
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Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken Bowls with Cauliflower Rice and Avocado

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My Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken Bowls are the ultimate easy, weeknight recipe! And, it screams SPRING!

I cannot even believe how easy this is to make. Really. I can’t. It took me 5 minutes to get it into the slow cooker and another 5 minutes to finish it up and serve.

Everything is made in the slow cooker – no extra dishes for prep… Well, except a whisk and a knife. Okay, are you convinced yet? It’s SO easy! 🙂

But aside from being easy, it is DE-licious!

I made this one evening for dinner and it had just gotten up to about 84 degrees in Dallas. It’s been in the 40’s in the mornings so 84 felt hot! So honestly? The last thing I wanted was a bowl of something hot. And I was kind of bummed that I had chosen this dish for dinner. I wanted something cool and refreshing. But guess what? This was that exactly! I served it over raw greens (I chose spinach because we LOVE spinach, but you could use any dark, leafy greens you like…) and it was so good – astringent, if you will. Which is how we should be eating this time of year… Cleansing, astringent foods.

This is the time of year for citrus, fresh fruits, raw produce, etc. You’ll see so much beautiful produce in the grocery stores right now! We LOVE this time of year!

We hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do!

Slow Cooker Lemon Chicken Bowls with Cauliflower Rice and Avocado

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs organic chicken breasts
  • 1 quart low sodium, organic chicken bone broth
  • zest and juice of 2 large lemons
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp raw/local honey
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • real salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 pre-washed container spinach or baby kale
  • 2, 10oz bags cauliflower rice
  • 1 large avocado
  • several cilantro or parsley leaves

Directions:

  • In the bowl of your slow cooker, place the broth, zest and juice of the lemons, onion, honey, garlic powder, coriander, oregano, cayenne, salt and black pepper. Whisk well to combine.
  • Place the chicken into the slow cooker and “nuzzle” down into the sauce so the chicken is almost completely covered.
  • Set slow cooker to low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours.
  • Approximately 1 hour before the crockpot tells you it’s done, take two forks and gently shred the chicken to pull apart into desired-size pieces and add in cauliflower rice and stir to combine. Cover again and let it continue to cook.
  • To serve, place 1 handful spinach/baby kale on the bottom of a bowl and top with a big helping of the lemon chicken/cauliflower rice. Garnish with avocado and fresh cilantro or parsley leaves.
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Instructions
  1. In the bowl of your slow cooker, place the broth, zest and juice of the lemons, onion, honey, garlic powder, coriander, oregano, cayenne, salt and black pepper. Whisk well to combine.
  2. Place the chicken into the slow cooker and “nuzzle” down into the sauce so the chicken is almost completely covered.
  3. Set slow cooker to low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours.
  4. Approximately 1 hour before the crockpot tells you it’s done, take two forks and gently shred the chicken to pull apart into desired-size pieces and add in cauliflower rice and stir to combine. Cover again and let it continue to cook.
  5. To serve, place 1 handful spinach/baby kale on the bottom of a bowl and top with a big helping of the lemon chicken/cauliflower rice. Garnish with avocado and fresh cilantro or parsley leaves.
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A Healthier Panzanella Salad

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Ok – so let me preface with – this is not a “true” Panzanella salad in every sense of the word. There is not near the amount of bread that is in a typical Panzanella and I’ve added greens in lieu of all of the bread. Nor did I marinade the croutons in tomato juices, etc. BUT, it eats like a Panzanella. Everything is in big pieces and the juices from the roasted tomatoes create some of the dressing and that seeps into the croutons and mmm… I mean, I can’t get enough!

This is one of those salads I crave at least once a week. It is one of my favorite and easiest meals to make. And yes, I just called a salad a meal and I promise you will feel this way once you’ve had this one!

Mo and I are eaters. Foodies for sure. But we really like to eat food. 🙂 So if you haven’t made any of my other salads and therefore you’re not “in the know” yet – you can trust that my salads are not for the faint of heart. This definitely took some convincing with Mo when I first started cooking for him. This is where the “inside joke” of “We’re having a ‘big salad’ for dinner…” came from. When I was racing triathlon a bunch and had a full load of clients, etc., etc. salads were an almost nightly thing at our house! But if you ask Mo – he loves them. They are filling, full of nutrition and full of flavor and texture! …I’m big on texture! Gotta have some crunch!

So this salad pulls out my Italian heritage. As I said, it is not an exact replica of a true Panzanella salad. But, the anti-inflammatory nutritionist in me cannot help myself, plus, we really like it better this way!

Hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

Primal Panzanella Salad

Serves 2-4

Ingredients for the Salad:

  • 1lb free range chicken breast, cubed
  • 1/3 cup + 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, divided
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ¾ large container pre-washed baby spinach
  • 8-10 fresh basil leaves, julienned
  • 1 large shallot, very thinly sliced
  • ½ cup goat cheese crumbles
  • 1 large avocado, diced into large pieces
  • 1 ½ cups baby cherry tomatoes
  • 2-3 pieces good sourdough bread, cut into large pieces
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • Real Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • ½ – 1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)

Directions for the Salad:

  • Place chicken a large Ziploc baggie with 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar, lemon zest and juice, oregano and ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp black pepper. Seal bag and gently toss (over the sink – yes, I’ve learned the hard way! J) to combine. Marinade for 30 minutes, up to overnight. Pull out of the fridge 30 minutes prior to cooking.
  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line two small sheet pans with foil.
  • While oven is heating up, on one sheet pan, place the tomatoes and on the other sheet pan, lay the sourdough out, in an even layer. Drizzle the tomatoes and sourdough with ½ tbsp olive oil each and sprinkle both with salt and black pepper. Set the croutons aside and place the tomatoes into the oven to roast for 7-10 minutes until slightly browned and starting to burst open.
  • Using tongs, pull the chicken out of the bag and place each piece in an even layer, without touching, onto a large nonstick skillet over medium heat; discard the remaining marinade. Let cook for 2-3 minutes per side, until each piece is cooked through.
  • Meanwhile, in a large salad/serving bowl place spinach, basil, goat cheese and avocado.
  • When you’re ready to pull the tomatoes out of the oven, place sourdough on the top rack of the oven to toast for 2-3 minutes and pour the tomatoes, while hot, in with the spinach and then add the chicken.
  • Drizzle remaining olive oil and balsamic over the top and toss gently to combine and coat with the dressing. Sprinkle with salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes (if using) and place croutons on top. Toss again to combine and serve!
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Instructions
  1. Place chicken a large Ziploc baggie with 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar, lemon zest and juice, oregano and ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp black pepper. Seal bag and gently toss (over the sink – yes, I’ve learned the hard way! J) to combine. Marinade for 30 minutes, up to overnight. Pull out of the fridge 30 minutes prior to cooking.
  2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line two small sheet pans with foil.
  3. While oven is heating up, on one sheet pan, place the tomatoes and on the other sheet pan, lay the sourdough out, in an even layer. Drizzle the tomatoes and sourdough with ½ tbsp olive oil each and sprinkle both with salt and black pepper. Set the croutons aside and place the tomatoes into the oven to roast for 7-10 minutes until slightly browned and starting to burst open.
  4. Using tongs, pull the chicken out of the bag and place each piece in an even layer, without touching, onto a large nonstick skillet over medium heat; discard the remaining marinade. Let cook for 2-3 minutes per side, until each piece is cooked through.
  5. Meanwhile, in a large salad/serving bowl place spinach, basil, goat cheese and avocado.
  6. When you’re ready to pull the tomatoes out of the oven, place sourdough on the top rack of the oven to toast for 2-3 minutes and pour the tomatoes, while hot, in with the spinach and then add the chicken.
  7. Drizzle remaining olive oil and balsamic over the top and toss gently to combine and coat with the dressing. Sprinkle with salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes (if using) and place croutons on top. Toss again to combine and serve!
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