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Clean Eating Cornbread Muffins

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I grew up on cornbread! My mom always made it to go with soup, which we had pretty often growing up! Smelling it baking in the kitchen brings me right back to my mom’s house when I was little. It is the best nostalgia!

Corn can be a tricky thing though because of the gmo’s (genetically modified organisms) corn can be so high in. So, I went for quite a while without eating it and frankly, always avoid it when eating out, etc. unless I am sure that it is made with non-gmo cornmeal. If you’ve avoided gmo’s and then accidentally had them at one point or another, you know that they can make you pretty uncomfortable – sleepy, tired, lethargic, GI distress, disrupted digestion, inflammation, joint pain, etc.

My recipe specifically calls for non-gmo cornmeal – I like Bob’s Redmill brand for this. And just so you know, if a product is listed as organic, that also means that it is non-gmo. But, most products that are known to have gmo’s will have a label on them that states specifically: non-gmo.

I LOVE cornbread that has lots of texture and “stuff” in it, so I put green chiles, bell peppers and corn kernals into mine! But if you like it plain, you will still love this recipe!

These are a great pair with my Clean Eating White Chicken Chili or any chili, soup or stew!

AND, a great bonus is – during the holidays, you can make this ahead of time, freeze it and it’s ready to go when you need to make cornbread dressing. And now, you’ll have a cornbread dressing you can feel really good about eating!

Clean Eating Cornbread Muffins

Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup fine ground non-gmo cornmeal
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • ½ cup tapioca flour
  • 1 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup canned LIGHT coconut milk
  • 2 cage free eggs
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 can (or frozen) organic corn, rinsed and drained (optional)
  • 1 can diced green chilies (optional)
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, diced (optional)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and spray a 12-count muffin tin with avocado or coconut oil cooking spray, set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients and mix very well.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the liquid ingredients and mix very well.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until all clumps of cornmeal are gone.
  • Add in the corn, green chilies and bell pepper, if using. Mix well to combine.
  • Pour into muffin tins that have been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Pour evenly into 12-count muffin tin and bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center muffin comes out clean.
  • Serve immediately or let cool and store in an airtight container up to 1 week or freeze up to 3 months.

 

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Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and spray a 12-count muffin tin with avocado or coconut oil cooking spray, set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients and mix very well.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the liquid ingredients and mix very well.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until all clumps of cornmeal are gone.
  5. Add in the corn, green chilies and bell pepper, if using. Mix well to combine.
  6. Pour into muffin tins that have been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
  7. Pour evenly into 12-count muffin tin and bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center muffin comes out clean.
  8. Serve immediately or let cool and store in an airtight container up to 1 week or freeze up to 3 months.
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3 Ingredient Paleo Naan with Easy Primal Tzatziki

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This duo of recipes is one of my very favorite things to make for Mo and I (or, just myself 🙂 ) when I get the craving for something bready and unctuous! You know that craving? No? Just me? Ha! If you don’t know it – I’m not sure how to explain it… It’s just this want for something doughy that has a little chew to it and something to dip that texture in just tops it off! …takes it over the edge!

The naan in this recipe is not mine to claim at all! Ashley from My Heart Beets is due FULL credit for this and deserves every bit of it! She’s a genius for many of her recipes, but this one alone made me a believer!

The tzatziki is not traditional in the sense that it does not have cucumber in it. Could you add it? Absolutely! I would use a Hothouse cucumber. Halve it length-wise and then scoop the seeds out with a spoon. Finely dice or grate using a box-grater – a quarter to half of the cucumber depending upon your preference and mix it into the tzatziki recipe below.

I love to serve this with my Primal Greek Casserole (recipe coming soon!) or as an appetizer when we have company over… Or, like I said, when the craving hits me and I want something clean-eating to fill the craving with!

Hope this becomes one of your new go-to’s when you get that craving too! You’ll feel much better for it!

3 Ingredient Paleo Naan with Easy Primal Tzatziki

Makes 2 large Naan or 6 small Naan and 1 cup Tzatziki

Ingredients for Naan:

  • ½ cup almond flour
  • ½ cup tapioca flour or arrowroot flour
  • 1 cup canned light coconut milk
  • pinch of sea salt

Ingredients for Tzatziki:

  • 1, 7oz container 2% or full fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped + more for garnish
  • zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

Directions for Naan:

  • Mix all the ingredients together.
  • Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and pour batter to desired thickness.
  • Once the batter fluffs up and looks firm/mostly cooked – approx. 2-3 minutes, flip it over to cook the other side.
  • Continue until all batter is used.
  • Serve or store in an airtight container, once cooled, for up to one week.

Directions for Tzatziki:

  • Pour the extra water off the top of the Greek yogurt as you want it to be as thick as possible.
  • Place all ingredients except into a medium bowl and whisk well to combine.
  • Garnish with extra dill, if desired.
  • Serve!
  • This can be made one day ahead!

…naan recipe adapted from My Heart Beets

 

 

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Directions for Naan
  1. Mix all the ingredients together.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and pour batter to desired thickness.
  3. Once the batter fluffs up and looks firm/mostly cooked – approx. 2-3 minutes, flip it over to cook the other side.
  4. Continue until all batter is used.
  5. Serve or store in an airtight container, once cooled, for up to one week.
Directions for Tzatziki
  1. Pour the extra water off the top of the Greek yogurt as you want it to be as thick as possible.
  2. Place all ingredients except into a medium bowl and whisk well to combine.
  3. Garnish with extra dill, if desired.
  4. Serve!
  5. This can be made one day ahead!
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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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Roasted Green Beans with Cherry Tomatoes and Raw Parm

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I stumbled into writing this recipe on accident. I’ve learned that those are the recipes that are often-times the very best and the ones I go back to over and over again!

A little insight into me: I love french fries (hang with me here…) – many days after school when I was in, I don’t know, let’s say 1st grade through 5th or 6th grade, my mom would stop and let me get french fries and a coke or chocolate milk shake for a snack… Yes, you read that right. 🙂 My parents actually used to joke that I was going to turn into a french fry, I ate so many of them! Ha! And I would not go near a vegetable – except broccoli, which my grandmother always called “trees” – which she would make Italian style with good olive oil and lots of garlic… That’s the only way I would eat it. But put greens in front of me or carrots even… I was having none of it!

Obviously, as my taste-buds have changed (through a lot of work I’ve done on my own through my nutrition – I’m here to tell you, just because you were raised eating a certain way does NOT mean you have to give in to that way of eating as an adult – I’ll save this for one of our Health Episodes Podcasts 🙂 ) I do not eat near as many french fries as I did when I was growing up. That is not to say that I don’t crave them and full confession – I have my share of sweet potato fries about once a week at our favorite Dallas restaurant: Origin Kitchen + Bar

What I try to do now is create things that allow me to have the same process of eating as if I had a bowl of french fries in front of me. Meaning: french fries are a finger food – they are a little crunchy and salty and they just satisfy, you know? So, I’ve found that when I roast green beans or even asparagus and allow myself to eat them with my hands as I would french fries – it truly satisfies that craving in my brain and in a far healthier way.

Okay, so back to THIS recipe and how I stumbled upon it… I was craving something salty and wanted that unctuousness… But I try to keep my french fry indulgence to once a week or less… So I thought, “Green beans!!!” I had intended to make roasted chicken with a side of salty roasted green beans and a side salad of baby greens, roasted cherry tomatoes and grated raw parmesan. But when I started cooking, the salad just didn’t sound as good anymore – I just wasn’t that hungry anymore, but I had already blistered the tomatoes for the salad… So I thought well, I’ll just pour them in with the green beans and grate some of the parm over the green beans and tomatoes – that way nothing goes to waste.

Whoa! Best. Audible. EVER! Mo and I started eating and looked at each other and decided this should be my new go-to side dish for any occasion! The acidity of the tomatoes cuts through the salty green beans and the cheese adds so much flavor. Gah! It is so good! I could eat a whole recipe by myself, I think! That said, it is great as leftovers for lunch the next day too! And SO easy to double the recipe and use it as a food-prep item that you keep in the fridge to eat through the week.

Hope you enjoy as much as we do!

Roasted Green Beans with Cherry Tomatoes and Raw Parm

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds fresh green beans, trimmed
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1 ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¾ tsp black pepper
  • 10oz cherry tomatoes
  • 4oz block raw manchego or parmesan

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment, spray with avocado oil cooking spray and set aside.
  • Make sure green beans are dry and then spread onto the lined sheet pan. Drizzle with avocado oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss well to coat the green beans.
  • Roast approx. 20 minutes, tossing halfway through. They are done when slightly browned.
  • While green beans are roasting, make sure tomatoes are dry and then place them into a large, dry nonstick skillet over medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes, tossing occasionally. They are done when they are browned in spots and the skin is slightly blistered. (You might hear them pop a little – that’s okay!)
  • When green beans and tomatoes are done, pour the tomatoes over the greens beans while still on the sheet pan. Grate desired amount of cheese over the top and toss well to combine. Serve!

Notes:

  • You can roast the tomatoes in the oven with the green beans if you prefer. I’ve found that when doing so they release their juices due to the steam and it creates a bit of sogginess. It’s not bad – just better when done separately and the tomatoes are kept dry.

 

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Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment, spray with avocado oil cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Make sure green beans are dry and then spread onto the lined sheet pan. Drizzle with avocado oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss well to coat the green beans.
  3. Roast approx. 20 minutes, tossing halfway through. They are done when slightly browned.
  4. While green beans are roasting, make sure tomatoes are dry and then place them into a large, dry nonstick skillet over medium-low heat for 10-15 minutes, tossing occasionally. They are done when they are browned in spots and the skin is slightly blistered. (You might hear them pop a little – that’s okay!)
  5. When green beans and tomatoes are done, pour the tomatoes over the greens beans while still on the sheet pan. Grate desired amount of cheese over the top and toss well to combine. Serve!
Recipe Notes

You can roast the tomatoes in the oven with the green beans if you prefer. I’ve found that when doing so they release their juices due to the steam and it creates a bit of sogginess. It’s not bad – just better when done separately and the tomatoes are kept dry.

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Crunchy Celery Salad with Raw Parmesan

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I have a confession to make – I watch Ina Garten’s cooking show, Barefoot Contessa, on the Food Network every day while I eat lunch. I know… I know… We’re not supposed to watch TV or be distracted while eating – but it is one of my very favorite things! Sounds silly, right? But, it is so relaxing to me… Not to mention I learn so much. I swear, I learn something new every time I watch her – which I suppose is one reason she has been so successful!

Her recipes are by no means what I would categorize as “clean eating” – but she’s got several that with some light tweaking, they are wonderful for you! And that is the story with her Celery Salad with Parmesan.

I’ve made a few minor adjustments that don’t change the flavor at all, but help the salad become more anti-inflammatory. For example: I suggest a raw parmesan cheese vs a processed parmesan.

***Fun thing to note regarding dairy: Did you know that most people who deal with lactose intolerance can actually tolerate raw dairy vs processed? It’s the heat in the processing of cheese/dairy that denatures the lactose and that most often causes the issue for people who are lactose intolerant. Now, I am not insinuating that you if you are lactose intolerant that you go out and eat a bunch of raw cheese – but I do suggest you give it a try and see how you feel – maybe an ounce at most, to start… See how it goes! Quality really can be everything!

I like to serve this with some simple grilled chicken or salmon… It is cleansing and refreshing during the hotter months!

Hope you enjoy!

Crunchy Celery Salad with Raw Parmesan

Recipe adapted from Ina Garten’s Celery and Parmesan Salad

Serves 4-6…

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 1 lemon, juice only, divided
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 1 tsp celery seed
  • ½ tsp celery salt
  • ½ tsp anchovy paste
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • approx. 12 stalks celery + leaves, thinly sliced at an angle
  • 4-ounce block raw/unpasteurized Parmesan cheese*
  • ¼ cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • ½ bunch cilantro, leaves only

Directions

  • At least 1 hour before you plan to serve the salad, whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, juice of 1 ½ lemons, shallots, celery seed, celery salt, anchovy paste, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper.
  • Then, place the celery in a large bowl and toss it with the remaining juice of the leftover ½ lemon and ½ teaspoon salt (Ina says this is an important step and I must say – after making this, I 100% agree!). Add enough of the dressing in step one to the celery to moisten well. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to allow the celery to crisp and the flavors to develop.
  • When ready to serve, arrange the celery on a platter, shave the Parmesan onto the celery with a vegetable peeler, then sprinkle with walnuts, cilantro leaves, salt, and pepper and serve immediately.

Notes:

  • You will probably only need to use about ¼ cup of the dressing, so you will have about ¾ cup leftover. It is GREAT on other salads or to use as a marinade for fish! So don’t let it go to waste!
  • You can sub a raw manchego (sheep’s milk) cheese if you cannot find raw parm.
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Deviled Egg Potato Salad

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Potato Salad brings back all the feels for me… EVERY time we went to my grandparents house, growing up, we always had homemade barbecue! I grew up in Texas, so no shock there, right?

My grandaddy would smoke ribs and my grandmother always made THE best pinto beans, skillet cornbread and yep – you guessed it: Potato Salad! …we also always had deviled eggs – but not in the potato salad.

Her potato salad was always my favorite because it was just enough “dressing” to coat the potatoes but it was never, well, slimy. You know how some potato salads are just nothing but sloppy mayo? Yuck! 🙂

My potato salad recipe is a rendition of hers, but I thought: “Why not add the deviled eggs to the potatoes?” Plus, Mo would eat his weight in deviled eggs and while I love to make them, I don’t always have time. And when I do, he’s in heaven. So this recipe kills two birds with one stone and honestly? After you try this, I’m not sure you’ll ever miss having them separately!

Whether you’re prepping for a summer picnic or a trip to the lake… Or something new and fun to put in the kids lunches – MAKE my Deviled Egg Potato Salad! You will love it!

Deviled Egg Potato Salad

Makes approximately 4, 1 cup servings…

Ingredients:

  • 20 small heirloom (purple, red, yellow) potatoes
  • 6 cage-free eggs
  • ¼ cup Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil Mayo
  • 1 tbsp grain mustard
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 bunch chives, thinly sliced

Directions:

  • First, boil the eggs. Place eggs in a medium pot with cold water and bring to a boil. Turn heat off immediately and let stand, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Place into a large bowl filled with ice and cold water and let sit for 5-10 minutes, until completely cool. Peel and set aside.
  • Place potatoes into a large pot and cover completely with water, add a big pinch of salt and bring to a boil, turn to simmer and cover. Let cook for 10-12 minutes, until easily pierced with a fork.
  • Meanwhile, make the dressing. In a medium bowl combine the mayo, mustard, vinegar, paprika, salt and pepper. Whisk well to combine. Set aside.
  • Once potatoes are cooked, drain and set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
  • While potatoes are cooling, slice the eggs into 1/8ths (half, half again and then half one more time J ) and place into a large bowl.
  • Once potatoes are cool enough to handle, gently slice into quarters and place into the bowl with the eggs. Pour dressing over the top and sprinkle with ¾ of the chives and another pinch of salt and pepper. Gently toss to combine.
  • Garnish with remaining chives and serve.
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  1. First, boil the eggs. Place eggs in a medium pot with cold water and bring to a boil. Turn heat off immediately and let stand, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Place into a large bowl filled with ice and cold water and let sit for 5-10 minutes, until completely cool. Peel and set aside.
  2. Place potatoes into a large pot and cover completely with water, add a big pinch of salt and bring to a boil, turn to simmer and cover. Let cook for 10-12 minutes, until easily pierced with a fork.
  3. Meanwhile, make the dressing. In a medium bowl combine the mayo, mustard, vinegar, paprika, salt and pepper. Whisk well to combine. Set aside.
  4. Once potatoes are cooked, drain and set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
  5. While potatoes are cooling, slice the eggs into 1/8ths (half, half again and then half one more time J ) and place into a large bowl.
  6. Once potatoes are cool enough to handle, gently slice into quarters and place into the bowl with the eggs. Pour dressing over the top and sprinkle with ¾ of the chives and another pinch of salt and pepper. Gently toss to combine.
  7. Garnish with remaining chives and serve.
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Paleo “Cheesy” Cauliflower with Lemon Coriander Dipping Sauce

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THIS cauliflower! I mean… I made it for myself as part of my dinner one night when Mo was gone. I thought: “No way I’ll eat a whole head of cauliflower on my own, so great! I’ll have leftovers!” …you know where this is going, right? Yeah… Uh, no leftovers. I ate every last morsel!

I learned about Nutritional Yeast when I was practicing a plant-based lifestyle. And it has that reputation – people who can eat dairy or “normal” forms of protein from eggs, meats, etc, don’t include this in their regimens. Most have never heard of it. Plus, if you do practice a plant-based routine you know that animal proteins can add a lot of flavor to dishes, so without it, a dish can leave you longing. Nutritional Yeast will pack a punch of flavor!

So a little bit about what exactly, Nutritional Yeast is and why it is good for you:

  • Nutritional yeast is a complete protein (and a plant-based one, at that!), meaning that among the 18 amino acids it contains, nine are essential ones that your body cannot produce – we must get it from the foods we eat.
  • It is an immune booster due to the fact that it contains glutathione, among other things!
  • It also offers a significant dose of the minerals iron, selenium and zinc + 4g of fiber per serving!
  • Just a half tablespoon of some brands will provide you with a day’s worth of B vitamins, while other brands offer between 30 and 100 percent of B vitamins. These vitamins help you extract the energy from food and produce red blood cells.
  • It contains little sodium and fat AND it is gluten, soy and dairy free!

So even if you are fine with dairy and have no aspirations of practicing a plant-based lifestyle, you might want to start including Nutritional Yeast into your weekly routine! You could be missing out on some good stuff!

Okay, back to my cauliflower! Did I mention it’s delicious? And I ate THE WHOLE RECIPE ALL BY MYSELF? And that sauce – it’s not a must but it really adds to the dish. It has so much flavor and it’s anti-inflammatory and so good for you and I mean… I would eat this every day! So go! Now! Make it! It will be your new favorite side dish!

Enjoy!!

Paleo Cheesy Cauliflower with Lemon Coriander Dipping Sauce

Serves 2-4

Ingredients for the Cauliflower:

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into large florets
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Real salt and black pepper
  • 1/3 cup Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast
  • 1-2 tbsp fresh dill, for garnish (optional)

Ingredients for the Dipping Sauce:

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Place cauliflower in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Transfer to a baking sheet in an even layer, without touching, and roast cauliflower until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  • Sprinkle Nutritional Yeast over the cauliflower as soon as it comes out of the oven and gently toss to combine.
  • While the cauliflower is roasting, make the dipping sauce by combining all ingredients for the sauce into a medium bowl and whisking well to combine.
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  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Place cauliflower in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Transfer to a baking sheet in an even layer, without touching, and roast cauliflower until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle Nutritional Yeast over the cauliflower as soon as it comes out of the oven and gently toss to combine.
  4. While the cauliflower is roasting, make the dipping sauce by combining all ingredients for the sauce into a medium bowl and whisking well to combine.
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Cauliflower Chowder with Spiced Chickpeas

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I get on these kicks sometimes… Recently, it’s chowders. I literally wake up thinking about making chowder. I’ve never made a chowder. Never really had a burning desire to. But then for whatever reason, and this is how it works with me, I see something on TV or I have something at a restaurant and suddenly I am fixated on this one thing.

Chowder can be defined in different ways. But from what I understand, it ultimately means that potatoes are involved in some capacity. This recipe incorporates a potato for texture and creaminess – but some chowders leave them whole/diced. Does it really matter? No, not really.

My version of chowder (this time – stay tuned, there will be more where this came from!) is smooth and creamy… It is almost silky in texture. And I gotta say, one of the easiest recipes, quite possibly, ever!

I’ve posted several meatless recipes to demonstrate yummy ways of incorporating a meatless meal into the weekly routine (if you’re not already…) It makes life so much easier when you don’t have to cook a protein + it’s so good for digestion when we give it a little break from time to time. For all of my plant-based eaters, this is is a no-brainer for you. But for all of my carnivores, I’d be willing to bet you rarely if ever consider eating a meal that doesn’t involve meat of some sort. I’m here to tell you – try it! Once a week. Give it a shot and I promise you will feel good from it!

Over the last few weeks I’ve posted some great meals that I can speak for Mo (aka the ultimate carnivore) in saying that the meatless state of those meals was lost on him. Had I not told him there was no meat involved, I am 98% sure he never would’ve noticed.

That being said, this chowder will be a giveaway. Its meatless-ness (I know, not a word, but it works well here… Go with it!) will be noticed. But it is warm and filling and full of good nutrition. I served, yes, you guessed it: a “Big Salad” to go along with, which I kept meatless as well. We were completely satisfied, not wishing for more. It was a great meal.

That being said, this would be the most wonderful start to a meal vs being the main dish as I served it as. Or, served with a big piece of my 5-minute Grain Free Bread. Either way, it is wonderful!

We hope you enjoy as much as we do!

Cauliflower Chowder with Spiced Chickpeas

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 1 Yukon gold potato
  • 5 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1, 15oz can low sodium chickpeas, drained, rinsed and divided
  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 cup, light, canned coconut milk
  • 2 tsp miso paste
  • 2 tsp nutritional yeast
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 bunch chives, finely chopped

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line a large baking sheet and a small baking sheet with foil or parchment paper, spray with coconut oil cooking spray and set aside.
  • Chop cauliflower into florets, and peel and chop the potato. Arrange on the baking sheet and drizzle with about 1 tbsp olive oil and a couple of pinches of salt and pepper and toss to combine.
  • Lay a small sheet of foil out and place garlic on top. Drizzle with approx. 1 tsp olive oil, wrap in foil so that it is completely enclosed and place on sheet with cauliflower and potatoes.
  • Roast cauliflower/potatoes for 20 – 25 minutes, until the cauliflower is starting to brown and the potatoes are soft (it’s okay if they are a little al dente). Check the garlic after 10 minutes to make sure it isn’t burning.
  • While the vegetables are roasting, place all but ½ cup of the chickpeas onto the small baking sheet. Toss with sea salt and the smoked paprika. Place into the oven to roast for approx. 15 minutes – toss them occasionally. They’re done when crispy and slightly browned.
  • Allow the vegetables to cool for 5 minutes and then add them to a high-powered blender. Squeeze the garlic out of skin and add it to the blender as well.
  • Add ½ cup of the chickpeas, broth, coconut milk, miso, nutritional yeast and additional salt and pepper, and blend on high until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
  • Serve warm topped with chives and roasted chickpeas.

Recipe adapted from Alyssa at simplyquinoa.com

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Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line a large baking sheet and a small baking sheet with foil or parchment paper, spray with coconut oil cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Chop cauliflower into florets, and peel and chop the potato. Arrange on the baking sheet and drizzle with about 1 tbsp olive oil and a couple of pinches of salt and pepper and toss to combine.
  3. Lay a small sheet of foil out and place garlic on top. Drizzle with approx. 1 tsp olive oil, wrap in foil so that it is completely enclosed and place on sheet with cauliflower and potatoes.
  4. Roast cauliflower/potatoes for 20 – 25 minutes, until the cauliflower is starting to brown and the potatoes are soft (it’s okay if they are a little al dente). Check the garlic after 10 minutes to make sure it isn’t burning.
  5. While the vegetables are roasting, place all but ½ cup of the chickpeas onto the small baking sheet. Toss with sea salt and the smoked paprika. Place into the oven to roast for approx. 15 minutes – toss them occasionally. They’re done when crispy and slightly browned.
  6. Allow the vegetables to cool for 5 minutes and then add them to a high-powered blender. Squeeze the garlic out of skin and add it to the blender as well.
  7. Add ½ cup of the chickpeas, broth, coconut milk, miso, nutritional yeast and additional salt and pepper, and blend on high until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
  8. Serve warm topped with chives and roasted chickpeas.
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Warm Kale and Spinach Salad with a Creamy Paleo Lemon Dressing

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I’m a Nutritionist. And what that means is: I am supposed to be head over heels for KALE. All hale KALE. But… I’m not. I actually think it tastes a bit like a banana… And if you know me or follow me at all, you know that I loathe bananas. Always have. I’m sorry if I’ve now ruined the kale experience for you. Next time you eat it (hopefully this salad) you’re probably going to think of bananas. But, perhaps that will be a great thing, because maybe you really like bananas. All I know is – while I really don’t care for kale, I’ve learned that if I let it marinade in dressing for a bit or if I roast it and get it crispy, THEN I really enjoy it. Hence the birth of this salad. Well, and the fact that I am trying to incorporate more meatless dinners into our mix for Mo’s sake. The man loves meat. A lot. And left to his own devices, would probably eat it at every meal in spite of believing whole-heartedly that there is no need for it at every meal. I, on the other hand, would eat meat once a week, if left to my own devices. I’m not opposed to it, I would just much rather have vegetables!

So, we compromise………

I ALWAYS use spinach in the “Big Salads” I make. It’s my favorite. It’s dark green, it’s leafy, it’s antgi-inflammatory, it’s full of nutrition and man. It’s SO easy when you buy the pre-washed organic stuff. AND, it isn’t bitter like some other greens… Ehemmm KALE!

But, like we coach our clients, variety is the spice of life! 🙂 So I try to use other greens when I’m feeling the motivation to do so. I’ve never made a “massaged kale salad” before. But I have eaten them and really enjoyed them, in spite of my apparent distaste for kale. Mo loves kale, so I thought I’d up my compromise game and throw some kale and try the whole “massage the leaves technique” and let it sit for a few before adding the other ingredients. You know? It’s super easy… A little messy on your hands, but who cares? And, here’s the kicker – I really liked it. Annnnd, a little bonus – kale is 3g of protein per 1 cup chopped, so when you’re going meatless, this is an important point to consider!

Will kale be the new spinach for me? Heck no! But, now I have an easy way to make it something I think is delicious! Hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Warm Kale and Spinach Salad with a Creamy Paleo Lemon Dressing

Serves 2 as a meal or 4 as a side…

Ingredients:

Roasted Vegetables

  • 12-16oz bag pre-riced cauliflower rice
  • ½ tbsp smoked or regular paprika
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1lb baby new potatoes (any color), cut into ¼” thick rounds
  • 3 small carrots (any color), cut into ¼” thick rounds
  • 1, 15oz can organic chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin

Dressing

  • ¼ cup Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil Mayo
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp mustard powder
  • 2 pinches sea salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 1 large lemon, zest and juice

Greens

  • 1 bunch dinosaur or lacinto kale, stems removed and thinly sliced
  • 2 large handfuls baby spinach
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 jalapeno, thinly sliced (optional)

Directions:

  • First, make the dressing by combining all dressing ingredients into a medium bowl – whisk until well combined and smooth. Pour ½ of the dressing over the chopped kale and massage with your hands so that all pieces of kale are coated evenly. Set aside.
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line one large, one medium and one small baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with a light coating of coconut oil cooking spray.
  • Place the cauliflower rice onto the medium baking sheet in an even layer. Sprinkle with sea salt, paprika and turmeric – toss to combine. Roast in preheated oven for 10 minutes, toss and roast for another 5-10 minutes, until slightly browned on top. Remove from oven and set aside.
  • While the cauliflower is roasting, in a large bowl, combine cut potatoes and carrots. Add in drizzle of olive oil and spices, mix well until everything is evenly coated. Place in the oven to roast for 20-30 minutes, until slightly browned and tender.
  • Spread chickpeas onto the small baking sheet in an even layer. Sprinkle with sea salt and place in the oven, under the potatoes/carrots, to roast for approx. 15 minutes or until slightly browned and crisped.
  • Remove potatoes/carrots and chickpeas from oven and pour potatoes/carrots and cauliflower rice into the bowl with the dressed kale. Add the spinach and remaining dressing and toss well to combine.
  • Top with chickpeas and toss once more to combine.
  • Serve in bowls and top with jalapeno (if using) and toasted sesame seeds.
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Hearty Warm Kale Salad with Lemony Dressing
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Instructions
  1. First, make the dressing by combining all dressing ingredients into a medium bowl – whisk until well combined and smooth. Pour ½ of the dressing over the chopped kale and massage with your hands so that all pieces of kale are coated evenly. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F and line one large, one medium and one small baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with a light coating of coconut oil cooking spray.
  3. Place the cauliflower rice onto the medium baking sheet in an even layer. Sprinkle with sea salt, paprika and turmeric – toss to combine. Roast in preheated oven for 10 minutes, toss and roast for another 5-10 minutes, until slightly browned on top. Remove from oven and set aside.
  4. While the cauliflower is roasting, in a large bowl, combine cut potatoes and carrots. Add in drizzle of olive oil and spices, mix well until everything is evenly coated. Place in the oven to roast for 20-30 minutes, until slightly browned and tender.
  5. Spread chickpeas onto the small baking sheet in an even layer. Sprinkle with sea salt and place in the oven, under the potatoes/carrots, to roast for approx. 15 minutes or until slightly browned and crisped.
  6. Remove potatoes/carrots and chickpeas from oven and pour potatoes/carrots and cauliflower rice into the bowl with the dressed kale. Add the spinach and remaining dressing and toss well to combine.
  7. Top with chickpeas and toss once more to combine.
  8. Serve in bowls and top with jalapeno (if using) and toasted sesame seeds.
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Meatless Mushroom Meatballs

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Ahhhhh Meatless Monday’s. I really enjoy them! Sometimes it turns into a “Meatless Thursday” – nevertheless, while protein is obviously an incredibly important macronutrient, it is so wonderful on the body’s digestive system to take a break from animal protein sometimes – specifically meats – as these are toughest on the bloodstream and gut to break down. This is not a bad thing. Hear me: I am NOT advocating a meatless LIFE. but it is a great thing to offer the body a chance to break from it on occasion.

Mo and I spent the last 8 days in Maui, Hawaii. It was AMAZING. I will spare you the details so as to not rub it in 🙂 but suffice to say, we lived on fresh fruit smoothies and wild caught fish every day! It was fabulous!

Given that, we came back feeling pretty good… Sometimes travel can really take it out of you – especially when you don’t stick to your typical routine of clean-eating or perhaps drink alcohol more than normal, etc. Plus, travel in and of itself can be tough on the body… Plus, we’ve had a TON going on with LINK Endurance over the past month. So many WONDERFUL things that we are thrilled to share with all of you (are you signed up for our weekly newsletters!?!?) but nonetheless, I feel like we’ve been go-go-go for weeks now, even in Maui.

When we got back to Dallas we both decided it would be a good idea to give our bodies a little break and an easy way to do that would be going meatless at dinner for 5 days.

One of the greatest things I took away from practicing plant-based a few years ago is just because meat is available doesn’t mean I actually need it or want it. It’s just the American way right? We have a protein at every meal. I think it is SO important (and you know this if you follow us!) to LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! Before you order at a restaurant or decide what to cook for dinner – really think about it: do you WANT meat? Are you actually hungry for it? If so, YES! By all means! Have it! But if not, consider going meatless. Our bodies are so wise… If we listen consistently enough and actually adhere to, we will balance ourselves out so naturally. Okay now I’m getting on one of my favorite tangents! Back to the recipe!

These meatballs were absolutely delicious! All the texture and meatiness of the typical meatball but – no meat. And if you want to make them vegan, omit the optional cheese (perhaps use nutritional yeast instead…) and omit the 2 eggs and replace with 2 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 6 tbsp filtered water, set aside to “set” for 5 minutes and then mix into the “meatball batter” as you would whole eggs.

Last weeks recipe: Spinach and Egg Stuffed Sweet Potatoes started us off on our 5 days of meatless dinners! Follow along for next weeks recipe! Perhaps you use these for at least one meatless meal each week!? I served ours with a simple salad, but you could also serve with Zucchini Noodles or Cauliflower Rice or perhaps your favorite Pasta or White Rice!

Hope you enjoy these as much as we did!

Meatless Mushroom Meatballs

Makes 16-18 small meatballs, Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • approx. 20oz baby portabella mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup gluten free instant oats
  • ½ cup almond flour
  • ½ bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 cage free eggs*
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • dash cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1, 24oz jar marinara sauce*
  • parsley to garnish, leaves only
  • 1/3 cup grated raw/unpasteurized parmesan, pecorino or manchego cheese

Directions:

  • In a large skillet, sauté the onion in olive oil and a pinch of sea salt on medium-low heat for about 7 minutes, until completely softened.
  • Add mushrooms and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook for 10-15 minutes until completely cooked down – you’ll need to wait until the water evaporates and then keep cooking the mushrooms until they brown nicely.
  • To the mushrooms, add garlic, stir, and transfer the mushrooms into a large mixing bowl. Set aside to cool for 15 minutes.
  • Add the remaining ingredients, excluding marinara, to the mushrooms. Stir the mixture to combine and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to overnight for the flavors (and texture!) to develop.
  • When ready to cook, using a tablespoon as a measure, form small balls from the mixture. Fry the balls in a small amount of olive oil until they turn brown or bake them in a preheated oven at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  • Add marinara sauce to a medium saucepan. Place the meatballs on top and cook the meatballs in the sauce on low heat for about 15 more minutes after either cooking method.
  • Garnish with fresh parsley and/or grated cheese of choice. Serve with Zucchini Noodles, Cauliflower Rice, White Jasmine Rice or your favorite pasta!

Notes:

  • My favorite marinara is The Vine. They are the cleanest and best-tasting I have found! You can purchase in the LINK Endurance Shop or at Central Market.
  • If you want to make this entirely plant-based, omit the 2 eggs and replace with 2 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 6 tbsp filtered water, set aside to “set” for 5 minutes and then mix into the “meatball batter” as you would whole eggs.

Recipe adapted from Tania at cooktoria.com

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Instructions
  1. In a large skillet, sauté the onion in olive oil and a pinch of sea salt on medium-low heat for about 7 minutes, until completely softened.
  2. Add mushrooms and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook for 10-15 minutes until completely cooked down - you'll need to wait until the water evaporates and then keep cooking the mushrooms until they brown nicely.
  3. To the mushrooms, add garlic, stir, and transfer the mushrooms into a large mixing bowl. Set aside to cool for 15 minutes.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients, excluding marinara, to the mushrooms. Stir the mixture to combine and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to overnight for the flavors (and texture!) to develop.
  5. When ready to cook, using a tablespoon as a measure, form small balls from the mixture. Fry the balls in a small amount of olive oil until they turn brown or bake them in a preheated oven at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  6. Add marinara sauce to a medium saucepan. Place the meatballs on top and cook the meatballs in the sauce on low heat for about 15 more minutes after either cooking method.
  7. Garnish with fresh parsley and/or grated cheese of choice. Garnish with fresh parsley and/or grated cheese of choice. Serve with Zucchini Noodles, Cauliflower Rice, White Jasmine Rice or your favorite pasta!
Recipe Notes

My favorite marinara is The Vine. They are the cleanest and best-tasting I have found! You can purchase in the LINK Endurance Shop or at Central Market.

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