Monday, February 29, 2016

Baked Broccoli with Garlic

I have been asked what my favorite, EASY side dishes are and below is one of those dishes that we have at least once a week with beef, salmon, or chicken.

I think the best way to have broccoli is baked because it allows the stems to soften up, but by adding olive oil and seasonings it also helps it to crisp up and brown.

 Add garlic to this dish and it really blows any steamed broccoli out of the water!

So, without further ado, here is my baked broccoli that I eat weekly...

Ingredients: {4 servings}

  • 2 heads of broccoli, cut into florets 
  • 2-3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
Turn oven on to 350 degrees fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with tin foil or parchment paper. Mix all ingredients together in a big bowl with your hands ensuring olive oil covers all broccoli florets. Place broccoli on lined baking sheet and evenly spread out. Season with more sea salt and pepper. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes or until broccoli becomes tender and starts to brown. Add as a side dish to your entree and enjoy! 

Avocado Egg Salad

This egg salad is EGGcelent!
hahaha I just had to...
But, really, this egg salad is fabulous and I love that I don't have to whip up some paleo mayo to combine all of the ingredients together.
Instead, I used a mashed avocado as the binder.

Not only does the avocado give this egg salad a pretty green color to it, but it also gives a lot of healthy fats to the one who consumes this dish!
Avocados are also rich in B vitamins, vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin E and potassium. 

Ingredients: {servings ~5}
  • 5 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  • 1 ripe avocado, mashed
  • 1 large celery stick, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 small red onion, chopped finely
  • 1/2 large lemon, juiced
  • 4 big pinches of salt
  • 2 squirts of dijon mustard
Mix altogether and enjoy with lettuce wraps, on top of salads or all by itself!

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Avocado Egg Bake

I'm going to make this post just as simple as this recipe...
But, seriously, if you like eggs and avocados, then this is the recipe for you!

Even my picky husband likes this dish :)
Total win for me!

And SOOO easy to do in the morning for breakfast!!!

Ingredients: {2 servings}
  • 1 ripe avocado, cut in half
  • 2 eggs
  • sea salt
  • pepper
  • cayenne pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with tin foil or parchment paper. Scoop out more of the avocado meat to make room for an egg {make the hole wider and deeper}. Place avocado halves on the lined baking sheet and carefully crack an egg in each half ensuring yolk gets in. Season with sea salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Place in oven and bake for about 17 min or until the egg is set.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Tuna Salad

Growing up, I was never a fan of tuna salad. I think part of it was the mayo used {Miracle Whip = 2 big thumbs down} but as I've grown up my taste buds have changed. It also helps that the recipe below doesn't include mayo AND it's also pretty tasty ;)
By the way, I do like mayo now, but I'm a huge fan of paleo mayo. It tastes so much better and you can add different herbs/spices to make it even more flavorful! 

Ingredients: {servings 2}
  • 5 oz can of tuna {ensure ingredients are clean and contain only tuna and olive oil}
  • 1/2 of a small avocado 
  • 1/4 cup red onion, minced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 celery stick, diced finely
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together thoroughly and enjoy it on top of salads, in lettuce wraps, or all on its own :)

Garlic Butter Roasted Carrots

I love garlic. Like, a lot. I also LOVE butter. REAL butter. So, a recipe that combines BOTH butter and garlic is a heavenly dish for me!
 Which is why I love these roasted carrots....ahhhhh :)

This is also a VERY easy recipe. Three ingredients to be exact!
Well, if you don't count the sea salt and pepper :)

 These carrots are also a great side dish for any kind of protein entrée, but a favorite of mine is salmon :)
In fact, you could even rub some of this buttery garlic mixture over some salmon filets {along with sea salt and pepper} and place it on the same baking sheet to cook for about 15 minutes or until salmon is flaky.

Ingredients: {servings ~4}
  • 2 lbs carrots, peeled, cut length wise and then chopped {about 3 inch sized pieces}
  • 4 Tbsp real butter {kerry gold Irish butter}
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
Set oven to 425 degrees fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Place the cut carrots in a medium sized bowl. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter until completely melted and then add the garlic. Stir garlic for a couple of minutes until it starts to brown and then take off stove. Pour butter garlic mixture over the carrots and then stir to combine all ingredients. Evenly spread out on the lined baking sheet and place in oven for 30 minutes or until carrots start to char a little. Stir carrots around about halfway through baking. Serve! 

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Mint Green Smoothie

What is your favorite green smoothie? 

My personal favorite is a mint green smoothie. 
The mint adds a taste of freshness that makes you say, "ahhhhh" after every sip!
I love it.

Ingredients: {3+ servings}
  • BIG handful of spinach
  • 4 Tbsp full fat, unsweetened coconut milk
  • 3 fresh mint leaves with stems
  • 1 1/2 cup frozen fruit {I like to mix various fruits together: pineapples, mangos, strawberries and peaches}
  • 1/2-1 cup of water {depending on what kind of consistency you like}
Blend all ingredients together in a blender and ENJOY!

Paleo Banana Pancakes

When I have bananas that need to be eaten ASAP, I usually make my paleo pancakes.
They are literally 3 ingredients: bananas, eggs, and cinnamon!

A lot of other paleo pancake recipes out there include various flours i.e. coconut flour or almond flour, but they tend to be harder to flip in the pan and I only like to use those expensive flours for special occasions like birthdays, holidays, etc.
Except for coconut flour, I really, really dislike coconut flour...gag!

But, I love this recipe because it tastes sooo good and it is sooo easy peasy! And you can use fresh or frozen bananas, too. I have taken out frozen bananas from the freezer and warmed them up in the microwave for a minute before mixing all the ingredients together. It works great either way!

Ingredients: {makes about 10 small pancakes}
  • 1 large banana 
  • 2 eggs
  • a dash or two of cinnamon
Mix all ingredients together until combined. You will still have some banana chunks in the batter, but that's okay! Heat up a skillet on medium heat and coat with either olive oil, coconut oil or real butter {i.e. kerry gold irish butter}. Pour batter into hot skillet and let cook until golden brown {about 2-3 minutes} on each side. I like to make my pancakes on the smaller side because you can easily eat them with your hands and they are also easier to flip, but they will still hold good form if you make them larger :) Top with fresh fruit or almond butter or coconut flakes or whatever your heart desires! To me, they are delicious just how they are. Enjoy!

P.S. To make this a COMPLETE primal meal, add some veggies or a green smoothie! 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Roasted Cabbage with Dijon Mustard Glaze

CONFESSION: I had this exact meal for dinner last night AND lunch today. 
To say I love this dish is an understatement.
Add sautéed sausage or sugar-free, uncured hot dogs and it is HEAVEN!

Also, this dish is super easy to make! Promise. And you know how much I love simple...

You might have seen this same recipe posted back in the end of January during my challenge, but I thought that one of my absolute favorite dishes deserved it's own post and some nice pictures;)

See the full recipe below.

Ingredients: {8 servings}
  • 1/2 medium green cabbage, cut into 8 even wedges
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 Tbsp real butter {i.e. Kerry Gold Irish Butter}
  • 2 Tbsp minced white onion
  • 1 Tbsp dijon mustard 
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • pinch of sea salt and pepper
With the oven at 450 degrees, line a baking sheet with tin foil and set cabbage slices on sheet. Drizzle each side of the wedges with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Place baking sheet in oven and roast for about 10 minutes and then flip to the other side and roast for about 8-10 minutes. During this time, make your sauce by adding to a saucepan over medium heat and stir until butter is completely melted. When the cabbage is done, take them out and prepare on a plate. Then drizzle with the dijon mustard and butter sauce. Sauté sliced sausages or hotdogs {sugar free, nitrite/nitrate free, uncured dogs like the applegate brand} in olive oil over medium heat until browned and add to your roasted cabbage! Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Coconut Lime Fruit Salad

The perfect little side dish to mentally check you out of this winter season and drift you away into a beautiful, tropical paradise dream!

This isn't your typical fruit salad because this flavorful beauty combines a little sweet {all from the fruit} and sour from limes PLUS a little fat from coconut. This all plays nicely with a little bit of tropical fruit, especially fruit that is ripe and in season right now like KIWI and MANGOS :)

Doesn't this make you want to run away to the Bahamas or Hawaii? After making and eating this dish it made me want to pack up my swim suit, flip flops {ahh I miss all my flip flops and sandals!!!}, sunscreen and sunnies and get far, far away from here!

I hope this is the perfect little pick-me-up to get you out of the winter time blues...muah!

Ingredients: {15+ servings}
  • 3 ripe mangos, cubed
  • 2 cups pineapple, cubed {I used canned pineapple, but fresh is better}
  • 1 pint of blueberries
  • 2 cups purple grapes
  • 5 kiwis, peeled and sliced width wise then cut in half
  • 1/2 cup full fat, unsweetened coconut milk
  • zest of 1 lime
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1-2 Tbsp unsweetened coconut flakes {optional}
Mix altogether and enjoy! And, in my opinion, it tastes even better after it sits in the fridge over night:)

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Paleo Chicken Salad

This is a paleo version of my favorite chicken salad family recipe!

Whenever there were baby showers, bridal showers, or other fun family get togethers, my Aunt would make a HUGE bowl of her chicken salad and then stuff croissants with this deliciousness. 
But, as you know, being paleo doesn't include croissants and, in my opinion, the chicken salad is so delicious all on its own!

This is another very easy recipe and one that you can make a lot of which means you can have leftovers for other meals: lettuce wraps, on top of salads, or even all on its own as a snack :)

Ingredients: {servings ~15 servings}
  • 4 cups baked chicken, cubed and shredded some {I usually just bake 3 to 4 boneless chicken breasts seasoned with olive oil, sea salt and pepper in the oven at 375f  for 45min}
  • 3 cups purple grapes, halved
  • 1 1/2 cups celery, chopped
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced almonds {optional}
  • 1/2 cup paleo mayo {you can either easily make this or buy this}
  • 1 tsp coconut aminos
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 tsp curry powder
  • 1 Tbs salt
Mix together until combined well and enjoy!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Sweet Potato Sliders

Just look at this little beauty.....

These sweet and savory little babies totally hit the spot during our big {small, of 2 please?} 50th Super Bowl party!
And the homemade mayo and guacamole held the whole thing together quite nicely.

Again, this recipe was SO easy! If you have homemade paleo mayo ready to go, that is. 
If not, here is a quick recipe.
My suggestions are: (1) make sure all ingredients are at room temperature before mixing, (2) use avocado oil or anything other than extra virgin olive oil, (3) put your stick blender in and set at bottom of jar before pouring in the olive oil, (4) blend well with stick blender at the bottom of jar for a few minutes and then gradually pull up letting the blender grab a bit of oil at a time.

Aight, now let's get down to making these cute, tasty appetizers...

Ingredients: {4+ servings}

  • 1 large sweet potato, sliced about 1/4-1/2 inch width
  • 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1 lb of ground beef {grass-fed is preferred or you can use bison}
  • 1 egg
  • a few dashes of cayenne pepper
  • S&P to taste
  • 2 avocados
  • 1/2 white onion, diced finely
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • handful of cilantro, diced finely
  • 1 lime or lemon, juiced
  • homemade mayo
Turn oven on to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with tin foil. Rub sliced sweet potatoes with olive oil and sea salt on both sides. Spread out potatoes on baking sheet and place in oven to cook for about 30min, or until firm, but not too soft. Take them out and let cool. In a large bowl, mix ground beef, egg, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper well. Form balls and then flatten them some to match the size of your sweet potatoes. Grill or cook on stovetop over medium heat with olive oil for a few minutes on each side or until cooked through. Sprinkle more S&P over the top of the patties. Let cool. {You will have leftover ground beef, so you can either make more sliders or save the beef for another meal!} Mix together the avocados, onion, garlic, cilantro, lime/lemon and any other desired ingredients to make guacamole. Season with salt and pepper to taste. At this point you may finish off the sweet potato slices in a hot pan to make them a little more crispy. Then arrange the sliders by spreading homemade paleo mayo on the bottom of one sweet potato slice, adding the beef patty, dollop of guacamole on the patty and then placing another sweet potato slice on top. The mayo and guacamole kind of act as a glue to hold the whole thing together. Serve and enjoy! 

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Paleo Fruit Cobbler

So, I came across a paleo-friendly cobbler recipe recently and had to try it because I'm a sucker for cobblers! 

 {I believe the original recipe came from, but I tweaked it slightly?}

In this recipe I combined blueberries and peaches. You can use any fresh fruit, but the fresher the fruit/in-season fruit the better. This reminds me of a summer I spent out in West Virginia at my soon-to-be-in-law's house. My soon-to-be-sister-in-law {is this already a confusing story to read? haha my husband and I weren't engaged yet, so this was the easiest way to explain} and I went to a blueberry patch up in the mountains to pick blueberries. 
Oh. My. Gosh.
These were the BEST blueberries I have ever had! And they were GIGANTIC. Some of them the size of my thumb. No joke, I made blueberry cobblers for weeks {non-paleo, of course, this was my pre-primal/paleo days!}

I also love that this was a pretty simple recipe...
 So, without further ado, here is the recipe!

Ingredients: {servings ~7}
  • 7 cups of FRESH fruit {I used 4 cups peaches and 3 cups blueberries}
  • 3-4 Tbsp raw honey
  • 1 Tbsp arrowroot 
  • 1 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup melted butter {REAL butter like kerry gold}
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract 
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp butter {kerry gold}
  • butter for greasing pie pan
Set oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit. Mix fruit, honey and arrowroot in a bowl. Then pour into a greased pie pan about 9x9 inch with butter. In another bowl, mix all other ingredients with your hands {except for the 2 Tbsp butter} and then crumble on top of the fruit evenly. Cut up the 2 Tbsp of butter into about 5 chunks and place on top of the crumbles. Place in oven and bake for about 50-60min or until crumbles brown and fruit juices get thick. Enjoy!

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Sweet Potato and Bell Pepper Egg Bake

This 3 ingredient egg bake was SO easy and tasty!

And I'm all about easy recipes, especially breakfast recipes, because I always seem to be running out the door in the morning for work!

Mmmm and I just love simple, classic ingredients....

Ingredients: {servings 2}
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and diced into small pieces
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced into small pieces
  • 2 eggs 
  • kerry gold butter or olive oil
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
Okay, Okay...if you count the butter/oil and S&P it's more like 6 ingredients :)

Turn the oven on to 350 degrees. In a small pan, heat up about 3-4 Tbsp of kerry gold butter or olive oil on medium heat. Add sweet potatoes, season with S&P and cook until they start to brown. Add green bell peppers and season with more S&P. Crack 2 eggs into the middle of the pan and place in oven. Bake for about 15min or until eggs are cooked and sweet potatoes/bell peppers are soft. Season with more S&P and serve!