With the September Whole30 around the corner, we’ve been busy collecting quick and easy recipes to help us through the month. We’re turning to lots of sheet pan meals this month; you can’t go wrong with protein, vegetables, and sauce/seasonings cooked on one dish! Clean-up is minimal and most of these recipes will leave you with leftovers to make packing school or work lunches a snap the next day.
Here’s a round-up of TEN of our favorite sheet pan meals with thoughts from the bloggers who created them! Which ones will you try?
“Weeknights are a perfect time for a simple and beautiful sheet-pan dinner. It’s only three ingredients drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with my Italian spice blend. Use your favorite seasoning blend if you don’t have an Italian blend. Getting dinner on the table can’t get much easier.”
“I don’t even know if this counts as a recipe because it’s stupid easy. I think the hardest part is making sure I don’t burn my chicken when I broiled it for maximum crispy skin. Other than that, you’re literally tossing a bunch of protein and vegetables with spices and calling it a day! …a very flavorful day I might add.”
“The pineapple layered with the leftover Whole30 ham really gives the meat such a yummy flavor as the natural sugars in the pineapples help to caramelize the artificial sugar-free Paleo ham a bit. It’s like using brown sugar to get that slightly sweet taste, except totally way better, way healthier and obviously Whole30 compliant!”
“This Teriyaki Beef Sheet Pan Dinner came out of the oven absolutely PERFECT. The broccoli was perfectly cooked and even wonderfully crispy on the edges, the beef had that perfect takeout near-crispy (but not over-cooked) texture, and the marinade reduced to form the tastiest sauce over everything. I was blown away and so excited to bring you this method.”
“Sheet pan meals are just one of those things you have to have in your back pocket. Throw it all in the oven and let the oven do the work. It just doesn’t get much better than that. Plus, it makes for kitchen clean up to be a heck of a lot easier. Here is a super-duper simple sheet pan meal that is still satisfying and delicious. It’s simply Italian sausage links with green beans, bell peppers and onions roasted to perfection. I serve mine with a little lemon, mustard, and side of sauerkraut and I am a happy woman.”
“We always keep salmon in the freezer, so I thawed a fillet quickly then scrounged together the vegetables we had left. It was a mix of fresh and frozen, but you know what? It still worked perfectly! So use the veggies that you have. Carrots, mushrooms, snap peas? Those would be equally tasty in this stir-fry inspired meal!”
“This Whole30 Steak and Potatoes Sheet Pan Dinner is the perfect meal for a busy weeknight or when you don’t want to spend an hour in the kitchen. Rosemary and garlic enhance the flavors of the steak and veggies without overpowering them. This meal is so simple and easy to make with minimal prep and cleanup.”
“This One-Pan Teriyaki Chicken Veggie Bake made with a simple homemade teriyaki sauce is easy to make, infused with asian flavors, and Whole30 friendly! Most homemade teriyaki sauces are made with soy sauce and a sweetener of some sort but you won’t find either of those ingredients in this recipe. I replaced the soy sauce and sweetener with coconut aminos and freshly squeeze orange juice and the results were on point. A Whole30 friendly Teriyaki Sauce for the win!”
“This Roasted Lemon Chicken and Green Beans Sheet Pan Meal is an easy and delicious dinner that’s low-carb, Keto, low-glycemic, gluten-free, dairy-free, and South Beach Diet Phase One, and can be Paleo or Whole 30 with the right ingredient choices!”
So, as a novice Whole30er, you might find yourself asking, “What is with all this talk about a meal template?” Basically, the meal template is our goal and guide as to how much of what types of foods we should be eating. It reminds us that veggies should be the primary food on our plate (and that means you too potatoes and sweet potatoes). It also reminds us that we need other real food on our plates. It’s critical that all meals include veggies, protein and a healthy plated fat. Fruit is optional but if consumed, should be eaten as part of your meal and not as a “dessert” Also, keep fruit to no more than 2 servings a day. Remember, ½ of a banana is one serving.
So… lets break down the plate. On Whole30 you should be eating healthy food, and a lot of it. You shouldn’t be hungry between meals unless you are doing big workouts and then you might need a mini meal. Your plate should be a dinner size plate, a salad plate isn’t large enough.
Over 1/2 of your plate should be veggies. They can be raw, sautéed, grilled, baked chopped up, whole, spiralized, riced etc. Basically, don’t deep fry them and put a lot of them on your plate. Potatoes and sweet potatoes are veggies for Whole30 purposes, but this doesn’t mean you should eat platefuls of mashed potatoes. Keep it colorful and make sure to mix it up. I personally eat tons of greens. A quick friendly reminder that peas and corn are no-go’s for Whole30 purposes.
You should have 1-2 palm sized portions of protein at every meal. Protein can be fish, poultry, pork, beef etc. It can be cooked a thousand different ways! This is where your energy will come from in between meals. I personally grill and sautée a lot. This should be good protein, as clean or organic as possible. For many people (like myself) all organic is not in the budget so I do it when and where I can. Do what works with your budget and strong stress about getting organic. Bacon is not considered a protein or a plated fat, it’s just a little extra something, so keep it reasonable.
What is a plated fat you ask? I asked the same question a couple of years ago. It is a healthy fat that is part of your meal. Cooking fat, oil, or ghee that you use to cook your food is NOT a plated fat. Most of that remains in the pan and is not enough to count. Plated fat should be part of every single meal. It is what keeps you satisfied between meals. Some plated fat favorites are: almond butter or other non-peanut nut butter, avocado, dressing (like dump ranch- which is a staple on my plate), coconut cream or ghee in your coffee, mayonnaise (I make my own and holy moly is it amazing), olives, raw nuts etc. There are all healthy plated fats that you can make a part of your meal. Portion size? I almost never measure, but a handful of olives or nuts, a couple tablespoons of nut butter or mayo etc., and ½-1 whole avocado
Don’t be afraid to use a Whole30 approved marinade or make your own. There are so many awesome recipes out there for marinades and they literally take seconds to throw together. Also, don’t be afraid of your spice drawer. I have probably 50 spices in my spice drawer and use all of them. It is amazing what they can do to add flavor varieties and make your food even more amazing. Always read labels on spice blends though. Many of the blends can contain non-compliant ingredients. To give you an idea, taco seasoning from the packet is generally not compliant.
If all is said and done and you are drinking a decent amount of water (general guideline is 8 oz for every 20 lbs. of body weight) and eating dinner plate size meals and still feel hungry between meals, you need to do some tweaking. Maybe you are feeling hungry because you used to be a big snacker and this is a habit that you are breaking, or maybe you might actually be hungry. Your plate might need a little tweaking. Maybe increase your plated fat, add a little bit more protein or throw a potato on your plate. Meal size definitely takes some trial and error to get it right. And remember, this is not a diet, it is feeding your body lots of good nutritious food to fuel you throughout your day so you can be your best, whether that means less medical issues, less exhaustion, a more stable mood or not having to drag yourself out of the bed in the morning.
There are so many NSVs (non-scale victories) that await you. Happy Whole30ing!
Who’s been drooling over Tawnya’s latest creation in the Facebook group. Gorgeous, isn’t it? Again, she was gracious enough to share one of her recipes and we’re so excited! Check out her Wild Boar Petite Loaf with Spicy Blackberry-Bacon Chutney recipe here.
Cooking is a wonderful outlet for some people and Tawnya has certainly found her stride since her passion is creating beautiful, healthy Whole30 gourmet meals. She found her creative spark in the process of recovery and learned to cook through her emotions. She finds joy in combining nature and color into her meals and is inspired by ancestral health and wellness. One day, she hopes to become a certified Whole30 coach so that she can help people heal through the miracle of healthy food.
Makes 12 large meatballs. I always make a large portion at dinnertime so that my husband and I can have leftovers the next day for lunch. I provide for three meatballs for each of us for dinner and for lunch.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2 lbs. ground chicken
4 slices of bacon, chopped into tiny pieces
1/2 -3/4 of a Granny Smith apple (depending on size), chopped into small pieces. You can save the remainder of the apple to accompany tomorrow’s leftovers!
1 Tbsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 tbsp sea salt
In a bowl, add the egg and whisk. Then add the rest of your ingredients, mixing thoroughly with your hands. Bake in oven for 25 minutes at 400F, then broil for 3 minutes.
For serving, I topped mine with extra salt and some pepper to taste and garnished with black sesame seeds (not shown) and chopped green onions.
You’ve read the book and are ready and raring to go. Put the brakes on a moment and take some time to PURGE! Your kitchen and your mind can use a little attention before you get started.
I got in the habit at the beginning of a round to do a purge and get myself set up ahead of time. Here are six things you can do to get ready:
Set Aside Fridge Space for Compliant Items Clean out a little space in your fridge for your Whole30 items. I take one of the shelves inside of the fridge door…ok, two shelves. Put ALL your Whole30 sauces, dressings, olives, etc. there.
Organize your fridge I know, I know–this is a dreaded task but let’s get things off to a good start. You can pick away at this! When you share a kitchen with roommates or family, things can easily get mixed up and you don’t want to accidentally grab that non-compliant mustard! And, you might not want to share your fancy-shmancy compliant bacon that you paid way too much money for!
Sort Your Spices They might not seem like something that would have extra stuff in them but there’s been more than one occasion that we’ve seen somebody ruin their Whole30 from not reading the labels. If you have the space, separate your compliant spices or homemade spices blends (read this post for ideas here) . If you don’t have the space, grab a package of sticky coloured dots and put them on the jars of spices that are compliant.
Set Aside Shelf Space for Compliant Pantry Items The first few rounds I was always pawing through my shelves to find what I was looking for. I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me to set aside a space for my Whole30 pantry items. Now, everything is in one place and it makes it A LOT EASIER to see what I have on hand to make meals with. If you’re short on extra space, dump it all in a basket–it’s gotta go somewhere anyway so might as well be together.
Stock Up or Make Compliant Items After all this organizing, you need something to put in these Whole30 spaces in your kitchen. Check out our Premade vs. Homemade: Getting Ready For A Whole30 Round post. You want to hit the ground running on Day1 and not worry about where things are or what you’re cooking.
Get Rid of Temptation Do you think that you’re going to feel the call of those Oreos sitting in your bottom shelf? Ditch them! Hide Them! Take them out into your yard and burn them! OK, maybe don’t burn anything but do set yourself up for success by removing food that might get you in trouble.
Have you heard about the hangover days? Carb flu? Yeah, they’re not fun. Good news though, not everyone will get it. Chances are if you were eating well beforehand that you’ll be fine. I was eating pretty awful before my first round and had a couple of rough days in the beginning. Here are six small changes that you can make before your round to ease into Day1 nicely.
Start Cutting Down On Sugar Passing up desserts is the obvious choice but you’ll be amazed at what sugar gets sneaked into. Many premade rotisserie chickens usually have brown sugar in it so be sure to read your labels. Start reading labels on everything and make better choices ahead of your round.
Go Dairy Free With Your Coffee The idea of not having coffee with cream and sugar in it to kick off your morning can be awfully daunting. Luckily, there are some great alternatives. You can make almond and cashew milk or dairy-free creamers like nutpods, which is almonds and coconut milk. I’m obsessed with nutpods and it tastes better than cream in my opinion. Click here to read more about coffee while on Whole30. You can get 15% off on nutpods on their website using the discount code jujuswhole30
Add More Veggies To Your Meals There’s no way around it—you are going to be eating A LOT of veggies in your thirty days. Go into the produce section of your supermarket with a brand new outlook and take stock of all that you can choose from. Then, choose it! Pile those veggies on your plate ahead of your round. If you’re not a great cook or a picky eater, this is a wonderful time because by Day30, you’ll be a force in the kitchen. Check out our Pinterest page for recipe ideas.
Make Some Proteins Or Meals To Freeze When you come home at the end of a long day, the last thing you might want to do is cook yet another meal. More cooking? Ugh. I always have stuff tucked away in my freezer that I can grab and heat up. You don’t want to be stuck in a panic with nothing to eat so do yourself a favour and freezer something. There have been times where a frozen hamburger patty that I made a few weeks prior saves my day!
Cut down on Alcohol Use to having a glass of wine with your supper? Try putting something else in that wine glass…have you tried Kombucha? Sparkling water?
Take Stock Of Social Events During Your Round Chances are you probably have at least ONE social situation to navigate through during your round where you’ll be by a mountain of sugary treats, alcohol, pastries, and more. Start to figure out how you’re going to navigate these situations.
Take the rest of the week and work through this list of to-dos to get started. Small changes ahead of time will make a big difference! If you have any ideas, please feel free to email us at email@example.com.
Prepping is such a key part to being successful on a round. Before a round, I carve out a little spot in the fridge for my Whole30 stuff. I also have a Whole30 shelf that ONLY Whole30 products go on! It makes it easy to see what I have at hand and what I need when I need to go to the supermarket.
A couple of years ago when I started my first Whole30 round, there weren’t many products on the market that were compliant.. Now, there are lots and lots of choices. Homemade is usually the cheaper of the two but premade products are convenient and save time. Whatever your budget and inclinations are, there’s something below for you.
You can purchase most products on Amazon or give Thrive Market a whirl. I have a membership there, LOVE the prices, and get most of my staple items here! You can get 25% off your first order and free shipping with any purchase more than $49 with a trial membership. If you’re low-income, a veteran, a teacher, a student, you can apply for a free membership through their Thrive Gives program. You can apply here.
SEASONINGS Using salt and pepper can get a bit boring after awhile. I like to spice things up (I know, I know…bad pun!) with spice blends since I toss together a lot of meals on the fly and love the variety.
Premade It’s no secret that we love Tiny Little Chef’s seasoning blends. You can see from one of my spice cabinets that I use her blends quite a bit–well, pretty much every day. She doesn’t put any strange ingredients in them to make them into Franken-spices and I love supporting her as a small business owner. I love her Inflammation Buster in my coffee and any of the house seasonings (spicy, lemon, original) get used fast in my house. We have a discount code for 20% off and free shipping (WHOLE30) if you purchase through her online store.
RANCH DRESSING The Holy Grail and most talked about dressing on Whole30. This is such an easy way to get a plated fat in any meal and it so delicious. Dump it on anything–seriously, it goes with everything!
Homemade Whole Sisters Dump Ranch is one of the most popular recipes amongst our readers. Use it with fresh herbs to kick it up a notch–you won’t be disappointed though it taste delicious with bottled herbs too.
Premade For those are slightly frightened of eating a raw egg now matter how delicious it looks whipped up into a ranch dressing, Primal Kitchen has an awesome ranch dressing that I love. Yeah, I’m one of those that can’t get past the raw eggs. You can also get it through Thrive Market here.
GHEE Any butter lovers out there? Yes! Don’t worry, ghee is clarified butter. You heat up regular butter and it separates into liquid fats and milk solids. Remove the milk solids, et voila, you have ghee.
Homemade The first time I made this it took me about 10 minutes. I did overcook it slightly but it has a really nice brown butter type taste to it. Word to the wise, don’t gab on the phone with a friend while doing it. Concentrate–it cooks fast! Check out Primally Inspired’s Ghee In The Crockpot recipe or DoYouEvenPaleo’s How to Make Homemade Ghee recipe. Pro Tip: You don’t need a cheesecloth if you have a tea strainer!
Premade We love Gather Superfoods Original and Brown Butter Ghee. I use the Brown Butter Ghee all the time and love it and you can get 30% off using the discount code WHOLE30 on their website. You can also get ghee at Trader Joe’s and, likely, your local supermarket or you can order it through Amazon or Thrive Market.
KETCHUP There’s no need to give up ketchup during a round. There are lots of options to stock your fridge with and you can keep making potato wedges, hamburgers, and meatloaf.
Homemade Dates add a nice taste to ketchup but, if you’re like me and short on time, you don’t have time to mess around with preparing them. Check out 40 Aprons’ Whole30 Ketchup recipe that’ll take no time to make!
Premade We’ve got a couple of fan favourites. You can order Not Ketchup’s Fruitchup here through Amazon or Good Food for Good’s Ketchup or Spicy Ketchup through Thrive Market (their ketchup is shown on the left).
MAYO Again, no need to give up egg, chicken, or tuna salad while on a round. That’s great news because it makes for quick and easy lunches!
Homemade One egg, some oil, and a few other ingredients are all you need to make homemade mayo–how easy is that? Check out The Movement Menu’s Homemade Paleo Mayonnaise. It takes 1 minute to make!
Premade If you’re in the no-raw-eggs-for-me-camp (Welcome, I lead that camp!), then Primal Kitchen’s Mayo with Avocado Oil may be for you. I must admit that I found the flavour a bit different when I first tried it. No sugar plus avocado oil instead of soybean oil will do that but I love it now! You can order it through Amazon or Thrive Market.
Homemade This will take you about 10 minutes from start to finish to make which is always a plus given the amount of cooking we need to do on a round. Get the recipe from The Real Food Drs’ for buffalo sauce here.
Premade The New Primal for the win! You can get their buffalo sauce in Mild, Medium, and Hot here on Amazon or can get 25% off your order directly through their website. Of course, you can grab most everything at Thrive Market like a lot of us do.
COFFEE ‘CREAM’ And lastly, we can’t forget our coffee drinkers out there. Some, of which, may be in a slight panic about the prospect of drinking their coffees black. Don’t worry, we have you covered!
Homemade Turns out cashew cream is super easy to make and quite tasty. Carla posted a her recipe on how to make cashew milk. I’ve tried it and really liked it. It’s worth a try–so simple! You can get more coffee ideas on our Whole30 Coffee Guide post here.
Premade I got used to drinking my coffee black. It took a month of trying in order to get there but I did it–I’m actually sipping on an iced coffee sans anything in it right now but that’s because I haven’t managed to get over to Judith’s to pick up some Pumpkin Spice nutpods that she has waiting for me. Nutpods is made from almonds and coconuts and is, quite simply put, DIVINE! It comes in original, French Vanilla, and Hazelnuts flavours BUT, if you’re feeling like something a bit different, try their vanilla lemon, peppermint mocha, pumpkin spice, and dark chocolate orange flavours! Click here and use the discount code jujuswhole30 for 15% off you order.
So, there are the six things you can make or buy to stock your kitchen for a round. Food does NOT need to be boring on Whole30 and you always have to have a plated fat so why not make it something delicious? For more sauces and condiment ideas, check out our That Special Sauce blog post. Enjoy!
So, you’ve committed to doing the Whole 30. Cue the fireworks! You’ve bought the books, you’ve done some online research, you’ve connected to our Facebook group (hopefully) and now, it’s time to go food shopping.
In addition to the ingredients you need for your regular meal prep, it’s important to have a well-stocked pantry to help round out your meals!
We’ve got your back with this list of foods to help you complete your kitchen!
Sweet potatoes, potatoes, whole squash and onions These veggies keep for a very long time and you can easily cut them into pieces, spread on a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and then roast at 400 degrees for 35-45 minutes. Keep checking as the onions obviously cook faster. You can also microwave a sweet potato or potato (poke holes in it first) for about 8-ish minutes and serve with ghee or olive oil, and salt and pepper to take care of part of your meal’s veggie requirement and your fat. If you have more time, you can slather coconut oil on your potatoes or sweet potatoes, wrap them on foil and cook them low and slow in your oven – 200 degrees for 2-3 hours. They are incredible!
Olive Oil Be sure to grab both extra virgin olive oil and light olive oil! You will go through it quickly on Whole 30! Use the EVOO to roast vegetables (I roast veggies like it’s my job!!) and you can also whip up a quick salad dressing using any combination of EVOO, compliant balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, compliant mustard, apple cider vinegar, and spices. Just play around with what tastes good to you! I often just drizzle EVOO, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper on greens and call it a day for salad dressing! I use the light olive oil for homemade mayo, dump ranch, and when I saute vegetables or chicken sausage.
Eggs Eggs will become your best friend on Whole30. Many mornings for easy protein, I cook three eggs (fried in avocado or coconut oil) for breakfast and share some of the whites with my daughter (nice mom, I am!). Most Whole 30 recipes call for eggs. Always have a dozen at a minimum in your fridge! Eggs are a great easy dinner when you’re tired and there have been a million times that a fried egg has spiced up my dinner of leftover something that I didn’t really feel like eating. Once you put a fried egg on top, it’s suddenly 100 times better!
Raw nuts Whole30 encourages you to go easy on your nut consumption as they can add up quickly but there have been many times when I have grabbed a handful of cashews (the chosen nut of Whole 30) with my meal for a quick fat. I also love raw almonds and walnuts. Nuts are great on top of salads or mixed into dishes like egg roll in a bowl. I also keep some raw nuts in my purse and at my desk at work JUST IN CASE of a hunger emergency!
Coconut Milk I keep no fewer than four cans of Thai Kitchen or Trader Joe’s unsweetened coconut milk in my kitchen at all times. I use this for coffee, to make scrambled eggs, and also in several recipes, including dump ranch, which I almost always have on hand!
Emergency Protein There will come a night when you are too tired to cook dinner. Be prepared with some emergency protein, such as compliant Applegate Hot Dogs or Trader Joe’s frozen chicken chili lime burgers. Also, cans of tuna with no soy – read your labels! Too tired to cook? Heat up some hot dogs/burgers and serve with some easy veggies and fat (see the rest of this post for ideas!!) Or open a can of tuna and mix with your homemade mayo or dump ranch (I always try to have at least one condiment pre-made) and you are good to go! One day I brought a can of tuna and a can opener to work and added it to a salad with veggies, hard-boiled egg and avocado (dressed with olive oil) that I bought. Tuna to the rescue!
Compliant Chicken Sausage About once a week, I cook up a package of compliant apple chicken sausage (I love the Coleman’s Natural or Aidell’s brands) and cut it into rounds. I sauté it in light olive oil with green apple and onion, seasoning with salt and pepper. I keep it in my fridge and add it to my egg breakfasts. So good and so easy!
Long-lasting Fruit One of the first mistakes I made on Whole30 was that I overbought fruit and it went bad. I tend to eat fruit at one or two meals daily because I enjoy it and I also exercise a lot (and walk a lot in my commute!). Fruit like apples, oranges, pears, and bananas tend to stay good for a while — remember you are going to eat small servings of fruit with your meal! I also always have no sugar added applesauce and raisins in my house for emergencies. If your fruit starts to go bad, you can cook it up in some water (add cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, etc) and make your own makeshift apple/fruit sauce. Just remember to eat it WITH your meal and not as a post-dinner treat.
Coconut Oil A staple for so much in Whole30 — Use it to cook your eggs, put it in your coffee, use it in recipes, and put it on your face to moisturize!
Ghee I am too lazy/busy(!) to make my own ghee but I always have Gather Superfoods ghee on hand. They make an original and a brown butter variety – and they both out of this world! Add ghee to your coffee, throw some on a baked potato, use it to make homemade buffalo sauce (with compliant hot sauce), or just add a dollop to the veggies already on your plate. It’s that good. I make a lot of salmon cakes and ghee is great in these. You can also make “fried” zucchini by sautéing zucchini, almond meal, ghee, and salt and pepper until it gets nice and browned. YUM!
Spices Having some basic spices on hand is so key to Whole30. Make sure you are stocked up on salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, dried parsley, cinnamon, and Italian seasoning. Check your labels to make sure everything is compliant. If you want to add a few more, grab some mustard powder, dried chives, cumin, and paprika. If you have access to a Trader Joe’s, check out their “Everything But the Bagel” blend and their Seasoning Salt. And if you’re really ready to spice things up, order some of our partner Tiny Little Chef’s spice blends – they will help you take your cooking to the next level.
I spent this past weekend with my parents and my daughter in Southern Maine. I love coming here. My parents have a house that’s about a 10-minute walk to the beach. I run every morning and sleep well every night in the ocean air.
While I love spending time with my parents, it’s also a chance for me to have a little break from running a household – my mom is awesome about doing my laundry and handling the mundane kitchen tasks, such as emptying the dishwasher (which I do 1-2 times a day at my own house!) I am a lucky girl!
I always arrive armed with my favorite Whole30 food, condiments, beverages – and of course, vegetables from my weekly farm share. Although I’m not on a round of Whole30 at the moment, I feel best when I eat as close as possible to Whole30. My Food Freedom includes a limited amount of added sugar and alcohol – and occasionally some hummus – but not really much more.
Here’s a peek at some of the Maine meals I ate this weekend:
For lunch on the day we arrived, I fried two eggs in Gather Superfood Ghee and served them on top of some greens from my farm share, some leftover sweet potato fries I brought from home (they were seasoned with the House and Blackened blends from Tiny Little Chef and an avocado wedge with Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel seasoning. I added some Bragg’s Nutritional Yeast the plate and washed it down with a DELICIOUStio gazpacho. Tio is a Whole30 Approved partner and generously sent me a sampler pack of their cold soups to try – and I LOVE THEM! My favorite is the rosado, which has a refreshing kick of watermelon.
After a day at the beach, we had dinner on the deck – and my dad grilled some hamburgers and Applegate Organic hotdogs. I had a burger and a hotdog with more farm share greens, roasted vegetables (mushrooms, eggplant, red pepper, and onion) and some sautéed potatoes, beet greens, and baby bok choy. I topped the burger with avocado and some Classic BBQ sauce from The New Primal. I dipped the hotdog and the veggies in the Mustard BBQ sauce from The New Primal. Both are Whole30 compliant and available at Whole Foods Market stores nationwide.
I will say that I poured myself a glass of sparking white wine mixed with seltzer to enjoy before dinner with some SeaSnax. But, after a few sips, the wine was not making me feel so great and I decided it was NOT going to be worth it in terms of my sleep quality and my run in the morning. I hate to waste things but I dumped the rest of the glass and enjoyed straight seltzer with my dinner.
After a sweaty 3-mile run, I needed some good eats to refuel. I made The Whole Smiths Banana Eggs – from the Good Food Cookbook. Be sure to get this cookbook NOW, it’s SO worth it! Banana eggs are not Whole30 but they are super clean – and so delicious. I topped mine with blueberries and served with leftover sweet potato fries, a random glob of leftover avocado, and an Applegate hotdog from last night. I had coffee with Califia Farms Better Half on the side – and this meal hit the spot!
For a simple Sunday night dinner after the beach, we made salmon. I made a sauce using Gather Superfoods ghee, almond flour, dried parsley, salt, garlic powder, and Tiny Little Chef’s Italian seasoning blend. I poured it over the salmon and baked it at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. On the side, I had leftover veggie – oven baked crispy broccoli, roasted sweet potatoes, and a medley of roasted red peppers, onion, mushroom, and eggplant. No wine tonight – I stuck with a can of mango bubly! Before dinner, I snacked on some walnuts, a few pieces of non-compliant dried fruit, and some Seasnax.
All in all, it was a delicious – and healthy – weekend!
What did you eat this weekend? Cheers to a tasty week ahead!
Many of you know Michelle Smith from her popular blog, The Whole Smiths. She is smart, funny, and authentic, and a talented recipe developer and home cook!
As an offshoot to her blog, Michelle has written the first-ever “Whole 30 Endorsed” cookbook,” The Whole Smiths Good Food Cookbook. The cookbook will be released June 5 (when Michelle starts her book tour – check out the tour schedule here to see if she’ll be in your neck of the woods!) but it’s available now for pre-release on Amazon.
Michelle was kind enough to share one of the recipes from the cookbook with us on Everyday Whole! Her Broccoli Chicken Ranch Potatoes look scrumptious, don’t require too many ingredients, and make for great leftovers.
Here’s how she described them in the cookbook:
I really wanted to include a Whole 30-compliant twice-baked potato in this book. Even though twice-baked potatoes usually have cheese (and lots of it), I decided to make a go at creating a version so loaded with flavor and goodness that nobody would even miss the extra dairy. I’m here tell you that I succeeded.
Thanks to Michelle for giving us this sneak peek into The Whole Smiths Good Food Cookbook! We can’t wait to get cooking from it!
Broccoli Chicken Ranch Potatoes
Serves 4 to 6
3 medium russet potatoes, scrubbed clean
[1/2] tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons salted ghee or butter
3 scallions (white and green parts), chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1[1/2] tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 teaspoons chopped fresh chives
[1/4] teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
[1/2] pound broccoli florets (about [1/2] head broccoli)
2 cups shredded cooked chicken (light and dark meat)
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Pierce holes into the potatoes using a fork, then coat in the olive oil and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the salt. Place the potatoes on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 1 hour. Let cool. Reduce the oven heat to 375°F.
Cut the cooled potatoes in half, lengthwise, and scrape the flesh out into a large bowl, reserving the skins. Mash the ghee into the potatoes using a fork, then combine with the scallions, garlic, dill, parsley, nutritional yeast, chives, the remaining 1 teaspoon of the salt, and the pepper. Add the broccoli and chicken and fold into the potato mixture.
Scoop the potato filling back into the reserved potato skins and place them onto a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the edges of the potatoes are slightly golden.
This weekend was so busy and on the go. It consisted of throwing meals together on the fly and eating in the car. Tons of lettuce with compliant prosciutto and tomatoes topped with dump ranch in a to go container and shoveled in while on the way to a local downtown event.
Day 3 was a bit of a challenge. I woke up with a crazy sinus headache that lingered all day. Who knew I was allergic to pollen? We had T-ball, an event downtown, my in-laws came over for a bit and no naps for my 3-year olds. I threw a pork shoulder in the crockpot and knew that I could at least throw some on salad. I also successfully burned ghee. I think I have only made it twice without burning it. I’m always one to try and save money and not outsource things, but I seriously think it’s time for some Gather Superfoods ghee.
Day 4: Today I will prep almond butter which should take about 10 minutes. Like I said, keeping in simple. No crazy weekend prep if I can avoid it. I am struggling in the afternoons. I get snacky and wonder if it’s that I have over-adjusted my portions (I never adjusted my portions when I stopped nursing back in October), or if its that I am thirsty or just tired and snacky. Now that I have the basic Whole30 down, I am trying to fine tune things: fewer sweet potatoes, less fruit, less nut butter. These are foods that I relied on heavily in past rounds and now believe that they were feeding my sugar dragon. I am not eliminating them completely, just being mindful of the amount I consume.
Day 5: Today I finally started seeing light at the end of the tunnel. My mind was clear and rested when I woke up. I was productive, did a 45-minute workout and felt more even keeled throughout the day. My afternoon food struggles were more manageable, and the only difference was that I ate lunch later than usual (around 1:30 pm). Today was my once a week try a new recipe and it was AWESOME!!! Saucy Kitchen’s Coconut lime chicken was amazing over cauliflower rice. I tweaked the recipe a bit and left out the red pepper, added extra chicken broth and an extra 2 ounces of coconut milk. I also used chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts. I can’t wait to add this into the weekly mix of meals.
Day 6-7: What a difference a week makes. Seriously though. As I was walking out of my grad class tonight I was reflecting on class last week. I was so tired but having insane sugar cravings. Last Thursday, I ate a piece of store bought banana bread that was in the house and honestly gross which led me down a gluten sugar rabbit hole. To be exact: two pieces of banana bread, one stale lemon poppy muffin, a brownie during class (to help me stay awake instead of the coffee they were selling at the exact same place < cue the poor choices parade> and after class when I stopped to get gas, I got a favorite, Hostess Cupcakes. It was ridiculous. I felt so gross, incredibly sluggish and Friday I woke up with the worst carb/sugar headache. That morning was when I randomly, without thinking about it too much, started my whole 60. Fast forward seven days, tons of delicious food, two family approved recipes, doing some form of exercise 3-4 times and I am back to my calmer, morning energy, productive self. I even fit in some self-care and took a yoga class with my favorite instructor. 100 percent ME time for 60 minutes. It was so good to get back on my mat. I’m honestly excited to see what the remaining 53 days brings.
Day 8: This morning I am starting to plan for a busy, and what could be challenging weekend. A birthday party, a wedding and Mother’s Day. I love Mother’s Day. Not that things are really very different since our kids are still little. They don’t sleep in, they are too little to let us sleep or relax with coffee. If I get breakfast in bed it will probably involve a gallon of spilled milk on the kitchen floor, iced black coffee in a stemmed nice wine glass my kids shouldn’t be touching and 8 cups of lettuce with a carrot wrapped up in a paper towel. At least the faces serving them to me would be beaming :). We are going to a super early dinner at a place that has a place for the kids to play in the sand and kick balls while my DW and I enjoy dinner with my in-laws. I know I can do the dinner part, but no cocktail is going to be tricky. I’m going to bring kombucha with me and order soda water in a fancy glass. That should do the trick. I’m not quite sure what I will do for the wedding but I’m thinking of eating a large mini meal on the way and bringing some backup food with me. I think I basically need to not eat anything on the plate because I can’t really check what is in it.
Days 9-10: Such a busy and fantastic weekend. I am so glad I had a week under my belt before this weekend’s festivities. The birthday party was a breeze, but I forgot to grab my plated fat on the way out the door. Our own Judith Forman rescued me with cashews she had on hand. I ate a late lunch so was not starving by the time we left for the wedding. I brought a Trader Joe’s chili-lime chicken burger, a handful of almonds and a hard-boiled egg. I drank seltzer with a slice of orange all night and had tons of fun dancing with my kids. Didn’t miss the alcohol at all, enjoyed some fresh berries and a cup of coffee during dessert and I felt like a million bucks the next morning for Mother’s Day. Because it was a late night I actually had an hour to myself to enjoy coffee and do nothing. It was the most perfect part about Mother’s Day. The events of the weekend came and went. I feel like I am in a really strong place and in total control of my Whole 60 right now. It’s such an empowering feeling. I feel stronger, clear headed and calmer.
I’m really glad I didn’t look at the calendar when I impulsively agreed to do a Whole 60. I will have to navigate Mother’s Day, my son’s 3rd birthday party, Father’s Day, and a bridal shower. Not to mention, this is the beginning of ice cream season. Oooooof.
Day 3, Monday: I started the week super motivated. We had to be out the door early for a meeting at my son’s future school (yay, preschool!) so I was up throwing leftover zucchini, peppers and mushrooms, oven fries and scrambled eggs on a plate with some special mayo/Frank’s sauce for a quick breakfast before we got out the door. I knew that I needed to start the day with a solid compliant meal to be successful for the rest of the day. Boom. Nailed it.
Days 4-7, Tuesday-Friday: I am struggling with the scale and I don’t even know why. Rationally I know, I KNOW, that it is JUST A NUMBER. It’s literally just information and doesn’t define my worth, or me but the pull to dig it out and step on it and KNOW what the number reads is so strong. I have been thinking about this a lot. I also have wanted to eat after dinner and am working on telling myself “the kitchen is closed, CARLA!”
Day 8, Saturday: I am killin’ it with the food piece of this round. One of my proudest Non Scale Victories is that I am really working on staying low key when it comes to food. I am using the program knowledge I have to keep it simple and stay focused on making what I know. I love having leftovers for breakfast and have enough sweet potato, onion, sausage and kale hash to eat along with scrambled eggs and a slice of tomato to have a super simple breakfast. I throw a scoop of guac on the side and a sprinkle of Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel Seasoning on the tomato and I’m good to go. My boys will both eat scrambled eggs too, so it’s a win-win-win breakfast option. You know what else happens Saturday? I dusted off my hand weights and did a workout video. It was not a pretty sight. I am out of shape, but my 2-year-old jumped around with me and it was probably the sweetest thing ever. He’s definitely my little coach and biggest fan, so I’ll call it a success. I have been so much more aware of moving my body. Even if it’s 15 pushups on the counter in the bathroom before bed, I’m doing something.
Day 9, Sunday, Mother’s Day: I slept in until 8:00 am, you guys. It was lovely. I had a delightful cup of coffee when I woke up. I made my own breakfast, which was a gift because it was exactly how I wanted it. We celebrated with my dad and stepmom, sister, brother and his fiancé. They were planning on brunch at home and in my food freedom, it would have been a perfect meal. My dad made a frittata that looked delicious, but alas, had cheese and peas in it. There was fruit salad and I helped myself to a small serving, but mostly focused on conversation and feeding the baby a snack. It was perfectly fine. My mom was in France with a friend and we’ll celebrate when she gets home. I’ll make her a whole 30 breakfast. *wink* I had leftovers for lunch and we ordered steaks from Longhorn for dinner because mama didn’t want to cook. I ordered a dry filet, sweet potato (topped that bad boy with brown butter ghee from Gather Superfoods) and garden salad with no croutons or cheese and topped it with dump ranch. It was perfection.
Day 10, Monday: I ran out of fresh greens Sunday, but dug around in the veggie drawer and knew I had some Brussels sprouts, compliant bacon and basically knew a hash would be breakfast. Before I got going on that, I set my Instant Pot to pressure-cook some eggs so they would be done at roughly the same time, because I’m brilliant. Well, actually it’s because I was really hungry for some reason this morning. Put 3 perfect strawberries on the side and of course, my go to scoop of guac on the side and breakfast was done. I’m noticing more and more that the anxiety about figuring out what I’m going to eat is easing up. I have options and I’ve practiced making things from scratch so many times at this point it’s becoming second nature. I tackled taking the boys to get my car inspected AND shopping at Costco and I didn’t even break a sweat. I always have to give myself a pep talk to get out of the house. If you have young, ahem, energetic, ahem, children you know what I mean…shopping at Costco makes one VERY hungry, so after I get the boys set up with lunch, I whipped up some sweet turkey, tomato and pickle lettuce wraps with the fresh mayo that I just made because I am finally able to do it without the panic of the recipe. P.s. If you can get Plainville turkey at your Costco, do it. That stuff is delicious and totes compliant.
One of my biggest challenges continues to be the scale. What the heck, 36 years of cultural programming!? I will continue to remind myself it’s not who I am and it doesn’t matter. I struggle to find specific dedicated time for exercise. I guess my ‘beggars can’t be choosers’ mentality will have to do for now and I’ll get it where I can. My sugar dragon is still a bit ‘firey’. (We decided that was a word, right?) I am fighting HARD to put her to sleep. Ssshhhhhhhhhh!
My Non Scale Victories are sneaking up on me. I am working on being less focused on the scale so they don’t fade into the background. I am rocking my goal of keeping it simple. Throwing together cold lunches, or rolling with the punches when the plan doesn’t work out is easier than it’s ever been. I’m so proud of that. Every day that it has been nice out, I have taken the boys outside we have gone on 2 walks as a family after dinner. The dance parties are back on in the living room. We particularly like Whitney Houston and the Trolls Soundtrack. I have not snacked, but I know what works for me if I need it. I also now have almost no pants without an elastic waistband that fit appropriately. It’s time to clean out the closet and make some donations. Last, but not least, I have used strategies to avoid the kitchen after dinner is over. Even if it’s been hard, I’ve still won the battle. Small victories. I’ll take them.
We all know that the key to success on Whole 30 is prep. But sometimes, Mama needs a little break from slicing, dicing, and serious cooking!
So, when our friends at Cece’s Veggie Noodle Co. offered to send me some already spiralized and riced vegetables to cook with, I jumped at the chance! With these vegetables, most of the hard work is already done and meals come together in a snap.
I invited my co-blogger and BFF Jenny over to cook with me. We got a later than expected start and didn’t even have a solid game plan in mind, but nonetheless, we created some great dishes!
First up, we took the Cece’s Veggie Noodle Co. white sweet potato spirals and gave then a rough chop. We added them to a hot pan coated in
As the vegetables started to get brown and crispy, we created two wells in the pan and cracked an egg into each well. Once the eggs fried up nicely, we served our hash alongside Tribali Foods Umami Burgers (Stay tuned for a giveaway on those coming up in the Facebook group!) Quick, easy and delicious!
Next up, we made what we dubbed “Prison Food.” I have to admit the dish didn’t look so appetizing at first but it tasted amazing – and was even better as leftovers the next day!
While that was cooking, we boiled down the rest of The New Primal marinade in a pot. When that had reduced and the chicken was just about cooked through, we cracked a few eggs into the riced broccoli, added the boiled marinade to the pan, and threw in some chopped cashews, sliced green onion, and sesame seeds. An Asian-inspired meal in a flash.
As a parting gift, I gave Jenny a container of Cece’s Veggie Noodle Co. organic zucchini spirals and the next night in her own kitchen, she came up with another original creation. She created a stir fry using the zucchini spirals, frozen peppers from Trader Joe’s, leftover sliced pork chops, and more of our favorite The New Primal Classic Marinade. Easy peasy!
Later in the week, when I was low on vegetables, I whipped up some Cece’s Veggie Noodle Co. organic riced cauliflower to round out some of my meals. I simply heated some light olive oil in my pan, and then added the riced cauliflower, two eggs, salt and pepper. I stirred everything together until the eggs were scrambled and the riced cauliflower started to brown.
It took less than 10 minutes, and I let it cook while I was packing lunches for the next day. I ended up using the riced cauliflower as part of my breakfast and dinner the following day. It literally could not get any easier.
My local supermarket (Market Basket!) sells other brands of fresh and frozen veggie noodles and rice but none are as tasty or as fresh as the Cece’s Veggie Noodle Co. products. It’s awesome that they’re produced in facilities that are wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, peanut free, tree-nut free, shellfish-free, and soy-free. You are literally getting vegetables – and nothing else.
I also love that Cece’s has a “ZERO food waste policy” – The package lets you know that “every single bit of our certified organic veggies gets used. Scraps of zucchini, butternut, beets, and sweet potato go to farms around our hometown of Austin, Texas.” So amazing!
And best of all, Cece’s Veggie Noodles are finally available in the Boston area at select Big Y and Target stores! Check the store locator on their website to see where you can buy some spiralized and riced veggies in your neck of the woods.
Have you used spiralized and riced vegetables? What’s your favorite way to cook with them?
*Cece’s Veggie Noodle Co. sent me the vegetables at no cost but all opinions are my own! I sincerely love this brand and all of its products!*