This Week I Tried…January 22nd Edition

I am still slacking with the weekly posts, but really that’s only a promise I keep to myself, so what do you care? 😉

The past couple of weeks I’ve tried a few new things but have kept it pretty straight edge as I’ve been teetering on burn out with cooking and trying not to extend myself.  Check out what I ate the last couple of weeks!

ZUCCHINI PASTA W/ BACON PESTO, recipe here

Cost: $18

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: Just a note that this little recipe requires a food processor (which I have) but when I started all of this I didn’t read the fine print when choosing recipes and would end up getting ready to cook and realizing I didn’t have everything I needed.  That said this was so yummy, I’ve always loved zucchini and now I love the AIP version of zucchini-based meals, this pasta hits the spot.  I would double the recipe if you want it to last for a few meals!

Notes: $18 for 2-3 meals and, again, I recommend having or buying a food processor.  A blender won’t get you the texture you need, but could work in a pinch.

LOX AND EVERYTHING SWEET POTATO, recipe here!

Cost: $13 – $30

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: OK, so this was the first dish with salmon that I enjoyed, probably because the salmon was smoked, but regardless, YAY!  This looks and tastes so good and works best as an appetizer, but is also filling as a main course.  Make sure the smoked salmon you buy is AIP approved and the sweet potatoes are white not orange!

Notes: $13 – $30 for 3-4 meals, the cost really depends on what spices you have around.  I had all of the spices, basil, oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, etc.  If you don’t the price will bump up a bit.

PALEO SNICKERDOODLE PANCAKES (+ BACON) recipe here!

Cost: $15 – $45

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: These pancakes were delicious but I only indulge once in awhile!  I know my pancake making skills could improve, looks wise, but they taste great…I promise.

Notes: $5 – $45 for 6-8 pancakes and it depends on the ingredients you already have.  Starting from scratch can be expensive of course, but I had most of these ingredients on hand so it only cost me roughly $15.

PALEO GINGERBREAD DONUT HOLES, recipe here!

Cost: $0 – $64

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: So these turned out more like cookies when I made them, but they are still good.  I may have gone a little too wild on the cinnamon!  Whenever you make AIP or even paleo donuts don’t expect a donut, seriously, you will be very disappointed.  If you expect a tasty treat, then you’re all good.

Notes: $0 – $64 and I know that’s pricey!  I happened to have all of the ingredients, hence the $0, but if you don’t it might not be worth going out to buy all these ingredients.  As I’ve mentioned before, however, these ingredients will stretch and you’ll be able to make a lot of delicious treats with them.

ZESTY DETOX SALAD, recipe here!

Cost: $23

Rating (1-10): 6

Review: This was better than I thought it was going to be, but there was just TOO much salad.   I know I am supposed to love salads on AIP, buuuuut I don’t.  It is full of amazing nutritional value and AIP-ers need that!

Notes: $23 for 3-4 side salads with an entree (that sounds like something written in a Chili’s menu) ;).

SIMPLE MILLS BANANA MUFFINS

Cost: $7.99

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: No recipe here but I wanted to share the banana muffins I made with the Simple Mills mix! Sometimes you need an easy snack and this is one of them.  I highly recommend this brand if you’ve reintroduced more paleo items into your diet!

Notes: $7.99 for one box of banana muffin mix, makes a dozen muffins!

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY TURMERIC CHICKEN SOUP, recipe here!

(Photo Cred: Unbound Wellness)

Cost: $30

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: So I forgot to take a picture, but you’ve come to expect that from me now, so I have to.  Any who, this soup was yummy, nutritional, and anti-inflammatory thanks to our good pal turmeric.  Be careful with turmeric it will stain anything and everything it touches.  Hop on over and check out Michelle at Unbound Wellness she has a ton of great content and recipes to share, this being one of them

Notes: $30 for 4-5 meals and you can also freeze and save for a rainy day!  Soup is good to have on hand because it’s easy to heat up and eat again down the road.

BUTCHER BOX, site here!

Cost: $129/month

Rating (1-10): 10

Review: I love this service, I finally tried it and it’s so convenient and you get quality meat delivered to your door once a month.  If you sign up now you get free bacon in every delivery in 2018!  I received two free packages of bacon for my first order and the 2018 special.

Notes: $129 for 8-11 pounds of meat and if you choose the variety pack it’s always a bit of a surprise. I received 2.7 lbs of chicken breast, 2 lbs of ground pork, 2 lbs of ground beef, 2 lbs of sirloin, 2 lbs of sirloin tip, and, of course, 2 packages of AIP approved bacon.

 

Next week I get another year older and this weekend I am celebrating by making myself a paleo chocolate cake, I am excited to share the pics with you!  Also, and because every millennial loves nostalgia, my friends and I will be celebrating in pajamas.  Yes a pajama party, no room for judgment here folks!

I hope you found something good to eat, until next time…

XOXO

Mack

 

This Week I Tried…January 9th Edition

I was back into the swing of normal life this past week and tried some new and delicious recipes, plus it’s raining in the LA desert today and I was in a writing mood, so lucky you I wrote this post (OMG)!

Enjoy!

CHICKEN LIVER MOUSE (PALEO), recipe here

 

Cost: $20 – $35

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: I am still working on getting enough organ meats into my diet, but this little recipe is certainly helpful in that endeavor.  I shared an image of the cooking process and the end result which I enjoyed alongside some Simple Mills Rosemary & Sea Salt crackers.  It’s so good! Disclaimer: you should have successfully reintroduced cashews into your diet before attempting this recipe

Notes: $20 – $35 and you’ll have a snack for daaaaays!  Lasts for roughly 5 days in the refrigerator, freeze up to 3 months after that.  This recipe filled up a big piece of tupperware so you will have a lot.

GARLIC & DILL SOCKEYE SALMON, recipe here!

Cost: $15 – $25

Rating (1-10): 6

Review: Again, salmon (see all fish), not for me, but this was probably one of the tastier salmon dishes I have had thus far.  I try to have at least one fish dish a week to get those omega-3’s!

Notes: $15 – $25 for 3-4 meals (if you’re like me and have to choke down salmon it will last you 4 meals, small bits only).  Side note: the sweet potato rounds are always bomb, eat those.

PALEO PAD THAI, recipe here!

Cost: $35 – $55

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: I am a lady who loves her pad thai and all Thai foods (especially panang curry, I miss you panang).  Thai food is pretty much a no-no for paleo AIP folks, even with reintroductions, many many night shade spices that are hard on the body appear in Thai dishes.  I was thrilled to try this recipe (I substituted kelp noodles for squash noodles), it wasn’t really pad thai in the traditional sense but it was definitely yummy in its own unique way.  You need to go in with the expectation that the paleo or AIP versions of recipes will be good but different than the standard versions.

Notes: $35 – $55 for 4 meals, this one is pricier as it incorporates non-traditional ingredients so be prepared to pony up if you really want to make it. 🙂

GARLIC STEAK WITH LEMON-PEPPER ASPARAGUS, recipe here!

Cost: $30 – $35

Rating (1-10): 6

Review: I normally love steak but when cooking with 100% grass fed beef you need more flavorings to offset the gamey taste and this recipe wasn’t doing it for me. I would go heavier on the spices if I make it again.  Also I recommend buying thicker asparagus as the thinner versions are a bit limp after cooking (but still delicious).

Notes: $30 – $35 for a 4 meals, I used a sirloin steak from the Belcampo Butcher Shop in Santa Monica (they also have an amazing restaurant and they can accommodate AIP).

CHICKEN STIR-FRY WITH RICE, recipe here!

Cost: $30 – $40

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: I loved this recipe and it is 100% like the real thing, I actually used organic white jasmine rice, not cauliflower rice (white rice is actually recommended over brown rice in reintroductions).  White rice, however, should be eaten in extreme moderation (I am failing at that).  It’s OK not to be perfect though, I am far from it, last night I dreamt I ate 4 slices of pizza….I am sad about that…because I don’t remember what it tasted like ;).

Notes: $30 – $40 for a 4 meals and you’ll enjoy every last bit of it, if you like stir fry!

GOLDEN MILK TEA LATTE, recipe here!

Cost: $5 – $20

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: I have to admit that this one was a bit too sweet/thick for me, but very good otherwise.  I will have to try a lighter turmeric-based tea here soon.  Eric really liked it!

Notes: $5 – $20 for the ingredients, everything but the coconut milk should last you for quite a few rounds of making this recipe.

EATING EVOLVED BUTTER CUPS, recipe here!

Cost: $4

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: I love discovering easy treats/snacks on AIP/Paleo!  They can be hard to come by unless you shop ahead. I first saw these on Alaena Haber’s Grazed and Enthused Instagram stories and they were in the aisle at my local Whole Foods, so I had to try one out.  While they really don’t taste like caramel sea salt (they taste like coconut as many Paleo/AIP treats do), they were yummy! I want to try their dark chocolate and almond sea salt bars, I’ll let you know how they are after I pick one up and give it a go

Notes: $4 per bar/pack, so yes they’re pricey, but quality ingredients often are!

I want to start the new year strong and find a good medical team to help with any underlying issues that may be holding me back from healing.  So if you know of any good functional medicine doctors, nutritional therapy practitioners, acupuncturists, etc.  in the LA area please send them my way.  While endocrinologists are great at diagnosing, their knowledge of autoimmune diseases are pretty slim. Sure, Hashimoto’s affects the thyroid but the root cause is not in the thyroid, so your health cannot be put solely in their hands.

I started listening to the Phoenix Helix podcast run by Eileen Laird which is so very helpful and positive for the AI journey.  Eileen interviews a multitude of people in the AI community who have or specialize in many different AI conditions.  One point they all drive home is that there is no easy/quick fix and there are multiple aspects to healing, something to remember when we’re frustrated on this road.

I know this is a far cry from who I was just 6 months ago and for those of you in my life who do not have an autoimmune condition please understand that this is important to my health and it is very much helping.  Food is medicine and while not every disease can be “cured” by just food and lifestyle changes, these changes I am making contribute to healing, they promote my health and wellness.

No, I can’t have refined sugars, gluten or soy again and probably no dairy or nightshades either, it’s cool with me so it should be cool with you. Yes, I am going to bed at 9:30 pm on the weekend because I need more rest, and so do you, go to bed! I can’t be as careless anymore and I know that sounds boring and restrictive, but dammit I have never felt better and that is priceless.  Health is so important and it’s never been more apparent than it is now.  I was the queen of staying up late, saying yes to everything, worrying constantly, smoking, drinking casually, and eating bread and sugar like it was my job and I was a mess, I just didn’t realize it.

I am happier in this new lifestyle, and not in a weird Scientology/Cross-Fit cult way ;).  I hope you’re feeling good and empowered in the new year and if not I hope you find your way there, thanks for reading, until next time!

XOXO

Mack

 

This Week I Tried…January 3rd Edition

I really screwed the pooch this past month and didn’t post anything and now I have a back log of recipes I’ve tried that I haven’t shared with you!  I know, you’re super sad and disappointed, right?!

That said, I hope you all had an amazing holiday break (if you got one) and enjoyed time with family (if you like them).  I know I did and I was even able to eat AIP or Paleo while back in frigid Indiana (thanks for the grocery buying mom).  Below is a smattering of recipes and snacks I’ve tried in the last month, and it’s A LOT, so I am apologizing in advance if you’re reading all of this.

Hope you get some helpful info from my critiques below, enjoy!!

 

SOFT & CHEWY GINGERBREAD COOKIES (AIP, PALEO)  recipe here

Cost: $5 – $72

Rating (1-10): 9

Review: These cookies are AIP and so delicious they are just as good if not better than standard gingerbread cookies.  I am featuring them next to the Paleo chocolate chip cookies I made in the last post, which are maybe the best cookies I’ve ever made, yes, even better than standard chocolate chip cookies.

Notes: $5 – $72, I know that price tag looks crazy but it’s ONLY if you are starting from scratch with these ingredients (which will have multiple uses and last a long time).  I only spent $5 for oranges and cream of tartar.  If you are starting from scratch try finding some other recipes that call for these ingredients so you get more bang for you buck.

 

JUICE

Cost: $15 

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: Eric got me a juicer for Christmas and I am LOVING it, I’ve used it almost everyday since I got it.  I don’t have a specific recipe but I usually throw beets, carrots, ginger, lemon, green apple, mint, kale, and spinach into the mix.  It’s good to get more veggies into my system in the morning, I was slacking in that area.

Notes: $15 depending on the ingredients you want to include in your juice, that $15 haul gets me roughly 4 – 6 juices (way cheaper than your local juicery), I recommend Trader Joes for all the organic fruits and veggies!

 

SNACKS, ShopAIP link here!

Cost: $? (Depends on what you buy, any order over $50 gets free shipping, that’s what I did)

Rating (1-10): 10

Review: I am so glad I started following all of the wonderful people in the AIP community on Instagram and Facebook, they’ve provided me with what feels like unlimited resources for maintaining an AIP/Paleo lifestyle.  ShopAIP is one of those resources.  They stock AIP compliant ingredients and most importantly, ready-made snacks!  This was a life saver for my trip back home, I would not have survived the flights without these snacks.  They also ship SUPER fast, I ordered on a Friday and had everything by Monday!  That could also be because they are based in California, regardless they are quick.

I loved all of these treats except the Dang coconut chips and Kiwa Beetroot chips, that said they are meant to be a healthier snack and will satiate your hunger, but they weren’t my favorites.

Notes: ShopAIP has a whole slew of snacks, ingredients, etc. not just what I’ve listed below.  Now anyone almost anywhere can get access to quality ingredients for a healing diet through sites like these.  There are no excuses! There are also great compliant meat providers (who ship) in Butcher Box, U.S. Wellness Meats, and all other ingredients via Thrive Market.  Thrive Market is a great deal if you plan on buying a lot of ingredients!

 

MONGOLIAN BEEF STIR FRY, recipe here!

Cost: $47

Rating (1-10): 6

Review: A Clean Plate has some awesome recipes and I highly recommend browsing their site.  While this wasn’t my favorite recipe it was delicious and lasted me quite awhile.  If you’re missing Panda Express, this will hit the spot for the fast food fix ;).

Notes: $47 for a 4-5 meals, you’ll only need one can of water chestnuts (I find out the hard way for you).  Make sure the can is BPA-free.

 

CHICKEN POT PIE SOUP, recipe here!

Photo cred: A Clean Plate (sorry I was lazy)

Cost: $22 – $40

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: This soup is so creamy and delicious!  It is especially good for the winter months.  I’ve made it twice in the last month, once when I had a cold, and it is just the cure for what ails you.

Notes: $22 – $40 depending on what ingredients you have, I recommend adding peas (if you can have or like them), they give the soup an added yummy factor!

 

SIMPLE MILLS

Cost: $5 – $8 (per product)

Rating (1-10): 10 (for crackers and cookies) 7 (for artisan bread)

Review: I’ve seen Simple Mills touted by the AIP Blogger Unbound Wellness and finally picked up a few of their products and I am SO glad I did.  While the crackers have sunflower oil in them (Paleo proceed with caution) all of the other products are pretty much Paleo!  I loved the cookies (too much), crackers, and the bread was OK (Paleo bread has been failing me).  I am excited to try their pumpkin muffins and the vanilla/chocolate cupcakes!  They also have frosting which I might have to try for my birthday :).

Notes: $5-8 per product (depending on the product), only some Whole Foods carry these products and not necessarily all of them (i.e. frosting or vanilla/chocolate cupcake mixes).  That said you can order them online!

 

SAUTEED MUSHROOMS

Cost: $5

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: I have always loved sauteed mushrooms and I can use the same recipe from my standard diet!  A package of slices white mushrooms, olive oil, and salt & pepper (omit pepper for AIP).

Notes: $5 for mushrooms at 2 meals!

 

CRISPY ORANGE PORK, recipe here!

Photo cred: Real Everything (sorry I was lazy)

Cost: $40 – $62

Rating (1-10): 6

Review: For the price I would say this recipe is just so-so and is still a little too heavy for me.  That said, it was pretty delicious and I would encourage you to at least try it!

Notes: $40 – $62 and that really depends on the ingredients you already have (as usual I am a broken record). The cassava flour is pretty expensive, but it will last you awhile.

 

GINGER GARLIC CAULIFLOWER RICE, recipe here!

Photo cred: Paleo Mom (sorry I was lazy)

Cost: $12

Rating (1-10): 8

Review: This was a perfect side dish to the crispy orange pork and a tasty (healthier) alternative to white rice.

Notes: $12 for everything and gets you a side dish for 2 meals, if you need to buy coconut oil the price will go up a bit, but if you’ve been on AIP awhile you will have this handy (I did not use tallow, it’s pricey but has more flavor). Trader Joes and Whole Foods have cauliflower that is already riced!

 

ROASTED GARLIC & HERB COD, recipe here!

Photo cred: A Clean Plate (sorry I was lazy)

Cost: $20 – $40

Rating (1-10): 5

Review: I just don’t love fish, but I’ll keep eating it because I know it’s valuable to my health.  That doesn’t mean I am going to pretend to like it for y’all, OK!  It’s nothing against the recipe, but my taste buds alone are against it.  If you like cod this recipe is for you my friend.

Notes: $20 – $40  and gets you 3-4 meals!

 

ROASTED ROSEMARY CARROTS & ONIONS, recipe here!

Photo cred: Primal Palate (sorry I was lazy)

Cost: $2 – $5

Rating (1-10): 7

Review: This is an excellent side dish and SO cheap, which is not normally the case on AIP/Paleo, but it can be done!  This dish has a comforting feel to and is perfect as a fall/winter side dish.

Notes: $2 – $5 for a side dish at 2 -3 meals.

I am missing a few meals here I am sure, but I wanted to share what I could from my month hiatus of meals!  I hope your holidays were as good as mine and that you’re feeling recharged for the new year, I know I’m not ;).

Happy New Year!

XOXO

Mack