breakfast, Clean Eating, Recipe, Whole 30

W30 Sweet Potato + Chorizo Frittata

Frittatas and breakfast bakes are my jam! I usually make them on Sundays then slice and store for quick and easy breakfasts during the week. Here’s one of go-to’s plus links to some of my other faves!

You’ll need:

– 2 tablespoons olive oil

– 1 pound chorizo sausage

– 2 cups sweet potatoes, shredded or finely chopped

– 1/2 cup yellow onion, diced

– 1/4 cup full-fat coconut milk or unsweetened almond milk

– 10 eggs

-1 big handful spinach, fresh

-2 Roma tomatoes, sliced

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Heat olive oil in a large cast iron (or oven safe) skillet over medium heat.

3. Add chorizo, sweet potatoes and onion and sauté until chorizo is fully cooked.

4. Crack eggs and whisk with milk. Season with S+P. (I like to throw this in my blender to quickly mix.)

5. Sprinkle spinach over chorizo mixture then pour egg mixture on top. Allow to cook for about 2 minutes.

6. Arrange sliced tomatoes on top.

7. Bake Frittata in the oven for 10-12 minutes or until eggs are fully cooked.

Some other meal prep breakfast favorites:

•Easy Breakfast Casserole from PaleOMG

•Buffalo Chicken Frittata from Thyme and Joy

•Enchilada Breakfast Bake

Clean Eating, Recipe, Whole 30

Whole 30 Shrimp Fried (Cauliflower) Rice

I’ve made so many cauliflower fried rice recipes over the years and I’ve finally come up with a variation that is as fast to prep as it is delicious. A win in my book 🙌🏻

You’ll need:

•1 pound wild-caught peeled + deveined raw shrimp (thawed if purchased frozen)

•1 bag frozen cauliflower rice

•1 small yellow onion, diced

•1 clove garlic, minced

•1 cup carrots, diced (I used frozen!)

•2 cups broccoli florets (fresh)

•3 eggs

•1/2 cup coconut aminos (I like @bigtreefarmsbali)

•olive oil

Method:

1- Steam cauli-rice according to package.

2- Roast broccoli (Tossed in a little olive oil, seasoned with S+P at 400 for about 15 minutes)

3- Over medium heat, sauté garlic, onion and carrots in olive oil.

4- Add in steamed cauliflower rice and allow to cook together for 2-3 minutes.

5- Push mixture to one side of the pan and crack eggs in open space. Scramble and then incorporate into rice mixture.

6- Again, push rice mixture to one side of pan and add shrimp. Cook until shrimp turns pink and then stir to incorporate into rice mixture. If cooking the shrimp in the same pan freaks you out, just sauté in another pan and then add in once fully cooked.

7- Add broccoli to the pan.

8- Pour in coconut aminos and stir until completely incorporated.

9- Taste and season with S+P as desired.

Let me know what you think!

Clean Eating, Recipe, Whole 30

Instant Pot Coconut + Curry Butternut Squash Chili

I love chili, especially during a Whole 30, but lately, my go-to recipes seem boring.

I decided to take my favorite chili base: ground beef, fire roasted tomatoes and bone broth, and add in totally new flavors: red curry paste, coconut milk and butternut squash.

It was just what I needed. A chili game-changer.

You’ll need

2 lbs ground beef

1 butternut squash, cubed

1 each red, yellow, orange bell pepper, diced

1 whole yellow onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup beef bone broth

1/2 cup canned full-fat coconut milk (solid parts)

1 28-ounce can fire roasted tomatoes, drained

3 tablespoons red curry paste (you’ll find this on the international aisle in grocery store)

2 heaping tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon cumin

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon cloves

Sea Salt

Method

1. Press the sauté button on the Instant Pot and wait for the metal insert to heat up.

2. When hot, add ground beef and a sprinkle of sea salt. Break apart and cook until no longer pink.

3. Stir in vegetables, add a bit more sea salt, and cook for about 5 minutes.

4. Next, stir in the tomato paste, red curry paste, minced garlic and cook until fragrant.

5. Add in spices, bone broth, tomatoes and coconut milk last. Stir well to make sure liquid reaches the bottom.

6. Lock the lid and cook under high pressure for 15 minutes. (Press the “Manual” or “Pressure Cook” button and set the time for 15 minutes under high pressure.)

7. Once finished cooking, allow pressure to come down naturally.

8. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Notes:

•If cooking on stove top or in a slow cooker, increase beef broth to 1 1/2 cups and coconut milk to 1 cup.

•This makes a lot! Cut recipe in half or plan to freeze half.

Recipe, Whole 30

Whole 30 Slow Cooked Balsamic Chicken Thighs

Easy Meal Prep Protein.

You’ll need…

1 t Garlic Powder

1 t Dried Basil

1/2 t Salt

1/2 t Pepper

2 t Dried minced onion

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 T EVOO

1/2 cup Balsamic Vinegar

8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs or 4 chicken breasts

Fresh parsley for garnish if desired.

Method…

1- combine first 5 dry spices in a bowl and then spread over chicken on both sides

2- pour olive oil and garlic in bottom of slow cooker

3 – place chicken on top of olive oil and garlic

4- pour balsamic vinegar over chicken

5- cover and cook on high for 4 hours.

I served over mixed greens with blueberries, slivered almonds and hard boiled egg then tossed in EVOO + balsamic vinegar. Also delicious with roasted potatoes and broccoli 👌🏻

Clean Eating, Recipe, Whole 30

W30 Egg Roll in a Bowl

All the deliciousness of an egg roll minus the greasy, unhealthy fried wrapper.

I discovered the idea of “egg roll in a bowl” a few years ago during one of my Whole 30s and since then I’ve made about 10 different variations (probably 10 times each!) I’ve even shared a couple of these recipes online, and today I’ve got a new one for you that I think is the best yet!

This recipe is a modified version of 40 Aprons Egg Roll in a Bowl. I love the mix of ingredients they put together and the delicious Creamy Chili sauce.

I changed the method a bit to reduce the greasiness from the ground pork, took out a few ingredients (ones I thought many people wouldn’t have on hand) and added scrambled eggs to the mix!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small bunch green onions sliced, green and white parts divided
  • 1/2 cup red onion diced
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pound ground pork (ground turkey or chicken could also be used)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 1-2 tablespoons Whole30 compliant hot sauce (I like Franks RedHot Sauce)
  • 14 ounce bag coleslaw mix
  • 3 tablespoons coconut aminos
  • 3 eggs

Garnish (optional)

  • green parts of sliced green onions from above
  • Sesame seeds

Creamy Chili Sauce (optional)

  • 1/4 cup W30 Compliant Mayonnaise  (store-bought or homemade. I like this recipe.)
  • 1-2 tablespoons W30 compliant hot sauce

Method

  1. Heat olive oil in a skillet and place over medium heat.

  2. Add white parts of green onions, diced red onion, and garlic and saute, stirring frequently, until red onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes.
  3. In another large skillet, brown ground pork and drain excess fat.

  4. Add onion mixture, grated ginger, and hot sauce to pork skillet and allow to cook together over medium heat for about 5 minutes.

  5. Add coleslaw mix and coconut aminos. Stir until well combined. Cook, stirring regularly, until cabbage is tender, about 5 minutes.

  6. Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together 1/4 cup mayonnaise and 1-2 tablespoons compliant hot sauce. (Totally unnecessary, but if you want to make your plate pretty, place creamy chili sauce in a small plastic sandwich bag to “pipe” when serving.
  7. Once pork-cabbage mixture is fully cooked, push mixture to one side of the skillet and crack eggs in open space. Allow eggs to cook for a 2-3 minutes then scramble gently and incorporate into pork-cabbage mixture
  8. To plate: Spoon a helping of the egg roll mixture in a serving bowl. Either spoon some of the creamy chili sauce on top or snip off the corner of the sandwich bag with the sauce and drizzle over egg roll mixture. Garnish with green parts of the green onions and sesame seeds if desired.

Let me know if you try it!

Clean Eating, Whole 30

The Perfect Roasted Veggies

One of my saving graces during a Whole 30 is having lots of roasted veggies on hand. They are the perfect thing to throw together with chicken sausage or left over ground beef in a pinch for a filling, healthy meal.

I typically roast a variety of veggies on Sunday and then eat them through the week.

My favorites to have on hand are sweet potatoes, broccoli, brussel sprouts and peppers.

Here are my tips for making the BEST roasted veggies:

1- Roast veggies in a hot oven (I always roast at 400 and sometimes up to 425!)

2- Drizzle a little olive oil or avocado oil, salt and pepper before roasting.

3- Roast on a flat pan (not one with sides as they will hold in heat and create a steaming effect – which produces mushy veggies – yuck!)

4- Roast on parchment paper, not aluminum foil for best results. Parchment paper better absorbs the moisture in the veggies allowing them to get crispier.

5- Space out the veggies on the pan. Overcrowding does not allow for even cooking.

6- For an extra crispy effect, turn the oven to broil for the last few minutes of cooking. You have to watch closely though as they will burn quickly!

7- When storing, be sure veggies are completely cooled before closing in a container and be sure to store like veggies together. For example, you wouldn’t want to mix roasted tomatoes with sweet potatoes as tomatoes are very watery and would change the flavor of your sweet potatoes.

Happy Roasting!

Clean Eating, Recipe, Whole 30

Whole 30 One Pot Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs

December has been such a whirlwind: Holiday parties, school performances and activities, Christmas shopping (and wrapping OMG), one kid’s birthday party and a 24-hour stomach bug that swept through our house. To say it’s taken a toll on my nutrition and meal prepping would be an understatement. I’m getting back in the game NOW as I prepare for my January Whole 30!

And because I am all about the busy mamas out there, I wanted to share this recipe for Whole 30 Slower Cooker Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs because it only uses ONE POT! Yep, that’s right. One pot, super healthy and only 5 main ingredients.

Here are the deets:

You’ll need:

-1 medium sized spaghetti squash

-2 pounds of ground meat (I used grass-fed ground beef but I really love to mix beef and Italian sausage together when I have it on hand. Ground turkey is also a great option!)

-1 jar of W30 Compliant Marinara Sauce (Rao’s is my absolute fave!)

-1 20-ounce can fire-roasted tomatoes

-2 eggs

-1 tsp sea salt

-2 tsp onion powder

-2 tsp garlic powder

-2 tbsp Italian seasoning (make your own or carefully read labels to avoid sugar and other additives)

Method:

1. In a large bowl, combine meat with eggs and spices. Using your hands, mix well until all ingredients are fully incorporated and ready to roll into balls.

2. Roll into bite-sized meatballs (I put my kids to work in the kitchen as often as possible!) and place in slow cooker (the meatballs, not the kids 😊).

3. Pour marinara sauce and canned tomatoes over the meatballs and stir.

4. Cut spaghetti squash in half through the center and scoop out seeds.

5. Place spaghetti squash halves face down on top of meatballs.

6. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours.

7. Remove spaghetti squash carefully, scoop out insides, then top with meatballs and sauce. Garnish with herbs of your choice!

Notes:

-If you have picky little eaters like I do, you can quickly make some pasta and top with the meatballs and sauce from the crockpot. I do this and everyone in my family is happy!

-This is a great meal prep recipe as it makes a lot! You can use the meatballs in other meals too — I love them with roasted veggies and a salad.

breakfast, Clean Eating, Whole 30

Whole 30 Egg Bake

This is so good it’s worthy of a holiday breakfast, yet so easy it’s also a great weekly meal prep option! The veggies can be switched out for anything your ❤️ desires!

You’ll need:

-1 pound compliant breakfast sausage (or 1 pack of @aidells sausage, chopped into bite sized pieces)

-2 1/2 cups butternut squash, diced (sweet potatoes or white potatoes can also be used here!)

-1 yellow onion, chopped

-1 red bell pepper, chopped

-2-3 cups fresh kale, removed from stems and chopped

-10 eggs

-1/4 cup canned full-fat coconut milk (use solid part only)

-Seasoning of your choice (Today I used Traders Joe’s Everything Bagel… but garlic powder, salt and pepper are 👌🏻)

Method:

•preheat oven to 400

•line a baking sheet with parchment paper

•place squash and pepper on baking sheet. Lightly coat with olive oil, season with S+P and put in the oven for about 10 minutes.

•while veggies roast, cook sausage in a pan

•once sausage is cooked, add onion to the pan and cook until tender

•add kale to sausage/onion pan and allow to cook for a few minutes

•crack eggs and whisk in a bowl with the your seasoning and the solid parts of the coconut milk (do not use watery part)

•remove squash and peppers from oven.

•layer into a well coated 9×13 pan (I use coconut oil) in the following order: sausage/kale/onion ➡️squash/peppers ➡️egg/coconut milk

•bake approximately 20 minutes in 400 degree oven or until edges start to brown and eggs are cooked through.

I’m serving this one on Christmas morning, but I like to slice into pieces and reheat for on-the-go breakfasts when I meal prep for the week!

Note: Frozen veggies will not work well in this recipe as they will produce too much water.

Clean Eating, Whole 30

Food Freedom Holiday Tips

There’s no way around it – December – especially the week of Christmas and New Years – is a tough time to be practicing Food Freedom.

Cookie platters seem to be appearing out of thin air and it suddenly seems like a good idea to crack open a bottle of wine on a Wednesday night. Many of us (me included!) give ourselves “permission” to indulge now because we know we’ll pull it together with a January Whole 30.

It is certainly ok to enjoy the holidays but a food-free-for-all is another story! Try these Food Freedom strategies from Whole 30 to decide which foods are “worth it” and which foods don’t really matter after all.

FOOD FREEDOM HOLIDAY TIPS

1.    Breakfast of Champions – Regardless of the holiday festivities in your day, make sure you kick it off with a good-sized healthy breakfast. Load up on protein, vegetables, and healthy fat so you are starting the day satisfied and full of nutrient-rich food.  With a solid foundation in the morning, you’ll set yourself up to make better choices for the rest of the day. The Whole 30 food will also help keep your sugar dragon at bay when faced with goodies at a holiday event.

2.    Routine Matters – Your holiday schedule may be crazy and filled with lots of parties, dinners, and social engagements. Despite the chaos, do the best you can to stick with your regular routine. Have your coffee and quiet time in the morning before the day begins. Get your workout in as you usually do – and maybe even take a friend or family member with you! If you stick with the things you know your body needs and craves, you will be more likely to be grounded and present during holiday events – and in turn, better able to decide if certain foods are worth it. If you are out of sorts with your routine, you can expect your eating to be out of sorts as well!

3.    Have your “worth it” questions handy (from Food Freedom.) There are several questions you can ask yourself before you decide to consume “a potentially less-healthy food or beverage.” Among them are: “Is it worth it?” “How will consuming this impact me physically, mentally, and emotionally?” “Do I really want it?” “Do I need to consume anything here to enjoy the experience?” You can use any of these questions – or some of your own – to help you decide if something is truly worth it. Keep these questions handy on your phone, on a notecard, or on your fridge. Make it a habit to run through them when you are faced with something you know has the potential to “mess you up.” As Melissa says in Food Freedom Forever, “it’s important to honor your truth in that moment by asking yourself if you even want it in the first place, and declining if you realize you just don’t. Nothing derails food freedom faster than eating something you knew you didn’t really want, leaving you feeling out of control and disappointed in yourself.”

4.    Be honest with yourself and others – If you shove leftover candy in your face at midnight when no one is watching, then it doesn’t count, right? Many of us are familiar with holiday (or non-holiday) secret binges. It’s a terrible feeling to sneak food, obsess over it, and then feel guilty after it’s eaten. Be honest with yourself – and with others. If there are foods that are making you feel uncomfortable in your Food Freedom, acknowledge that. You can move them elsewhere or maybe ask relatives to not to bring them. Know yourself – and understand where you are in your Food Freedom journey.

5.    Give yourself permission to decide in the moment – It may be tempting to try to map out your holiday events in advance and try to plan when you will indulge, and when you won’t. Don’t do that! Go into each event with an open mind, and permission to flex your Food Freedom if you think it’s worth it. By doing this, you are not setting yourself up for binges or cheat days, or feelings of deprivation or sadness. And things change day by day: At one party you may decide a glass of wine is worth it but at another gathering, you may be happy sticking with seltzer. Or at a holiday brunch you may decide that you want to stick with eggs and veggies but at work party, it’s worth it to go for a piece of cake. Rely on the tools you learned in Food Freedom Forever to give yourself the space to make these decisions as you as faced with them.

6.    Play the tape through all the way to the end – As you are deciding if something is worth it, fast forward in your head and think about the very end of the situation. Will it truly be worth it in the end? How will the wine/cake/cookies/ chocolate/etc. make you feel in an hour? In two hours? The next day? Will you feel physically sick or emotionally tied to sugar? Will you be able to hit that workout you have planned in the morning? Will you feel your best when you see friends and family tomorrow? Will it all be worth it then? By playing the tape all the way through, you allow yourself the opportunity to think about the final outcome of the eating experience – and then you truly decide if it will be worth it. This is a brilliant strategy and one that I am planning to use throughout the holidays and beyond!

7.    Make your plate last if needed – This is great tip from Whole 30 about going through buffet lines or making a plate during a family-style meal. Let everyone else take first and use the time to run through your “worth it” questions. If you are the last one to take, you won’t feel rushed or stress out about having lots of other eyes on your plate. You can take your time, take deep breaths, and choose wisely. And if you want to go back for more – or something else – make sure it’s really worth it (using many of these strategies listed) and be mindful about what you put on your plate. Go slow (it’s not a race!) and truly enjoy what you are eating and drinking.

8.    Show yourself grace – We are all so much kinder to others than we are to ourselves. If you eat something and it turned out to NOT be worth it, don’t beat yourself up. Take it as a learning experience, vow to do something different next time, and move on. Don’t let your days be filled with guilt or shame. Reframe and grow from it. And don’t wait until the next Monday or month or even numbered day to make a change – Start with your next bite.

9.    Savor the moments and the food – The holidays can be a loaded, emotional time of the year but at the end of the day, they’re about spending time with family and friends. They are not meant to be a time to beat yourself up or feel guilty or shameful. Embrace the holidays for what they are, take time for yourself in the busy-ness, and remember to savor the people and the experiences (special food included) that come around only once a year. Food is a piece of the holidays but there’s so much more. You can be in control of the food – not the other way around. Sip, savor, and enjoy! And know that anytime you need it, a Whole 30 (or a shorter reset) is at your fingertips to help you get back to feeling your best!

Whole 30

EATING YOUR WAY THROUGH THANKSGIVING DAY: A HOW TO GUIDE FOR AVOIDING A FOOD COMA

1,875.  

That’s how many calories are on the typical Thanksgiving Day dinner plate.  

Sounds like a lot, right?   Well, it adds up fast when your menu consists of turkey, cornbread stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, cranberry sauce, macaroni and cheese and buttered dinner rolls.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you to NOT eat the things you love; and I definitely don’t want you to count calories.  I just want to provide some perspective and food for thought for you to have on your radar as we head into the holiday season.  Here are my go-to tips for fully enjoying your Thanksgiving without having to ride out an ultra uncomfortable food coma!

  1.  Eat Breakfast.  Going into a Thanksgiving feast starving never ends well.  Eating an early morning meal of protein and healthy fat will help you to feel satiated and less likely to over consume throughout the day.  
  2. Get a workout in before the meal.  Combined with a healthy breakfast, exercise sets your metabolism for the day and will help you make better food choices.  Hit up your local Turkey Trot or take a brisk walk.  If you’re in the Lake Norman area, we will offer several Thanksgiving Day workout options at CrossFit Cornelius and C2 FHIT.  I’d love for you to join us!  
  3. Drink lots of water before and during your Thanksgiving meal.  Water helps your stomach stay full to avoid overeating and assists the gut in digestion.  Soft drinks and sweet tea just add unnecessary sugar and calories to your meal. 
  4. Use a smaller plate.  Swap out that huge dinner plate for a smaller one.   You’ll still fill it with the food you want, but portion sizes will be more appropriate.
  5. Be mindful as you fill your plate.  Start by putting one to two palm sized portions of turkey in the middle of your plate.  With the remaining space, fill half to three-quarters with colorful vegetables.  Then add on the side items that you consider to be your favorites or ones that you only have on holidays.  Keep serving sizes small as you really only need a few bites to feel satisfied.  
  6. Decide if it’s really worth it.  Just because it’s on the table doesn’t mean you have to eat it.  As you are moving through the buffet line, ask yourself, is this food really worth it?  My mom’s homemade sweet potato casserole?  Heck yea! Canned cranberry sauce?  No thank you.  
  7. Eat slowly.  Engage in conversation.  Enjoy the moment.  Once your plate is empty, wait a minimum of ten minutes before returning for a second helping.  This gives your brain and gut a chance to communicate to let you know just how full your stomach actually is.  
  8. Leave the table when you are finished eating.  Physically removing yourself will keep you from snacking after the meal and allow your brain and gut time to do their thing and send necessary satiety and satiation signals.  
  9. Practice portion control with desserts.  Thanksgiving is definitely one of those days when you should exercise your food freedom and enjoy a dessert that you love.  Here’s the deal:  There is no need to eat all five of the desserts being served.  Even if they are small portions.   You are more likely to over consume if you serve yourself “a little” of each dessert.  It’s best to choose one that you really want, savor every bite and then call it quits for the day! 
  10.  If you end up over indulging and in a serious food coma, don’t panic; but also don’t let it lead you down a slippery slope of unhealthy eating habits for days to come.  Ride it out, pull it together and get back on track the next day!  Give me a call if you need some tough love to get through it.