Tag: paleo

Savory Sweet Potato Kale Hash

Most of us think of breakfast as a type of food – bagels, cereal, pancakes, waffles, eggs, toast, etc.

I like to think of breakfast as a time of day. Anything goes!

I usually have a smoothie or oatmeal, but sometimes I want something savory and have leftover chili or soup or recipes like the one I’m sharing today.

People who start the day with a protein-rich, veggie-packed breakfast tend to have fewer food cravings later in the day. Most of us – especially women – start the day with a sweet meal that contains very little protein (i.e., most granola bars, bagels, cereal), which sets us up to have more sweet cravings, hormonal imbalances, mood swings, and low energy.

Want to balance out all of that? Try this dish.

Rich in fiber and nutrients from the sweet potatoes and kale, this meal will nourish you and fill you up. The protein comes primarily from the chicken sausage from my favorite company – Bilinski’s.

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Ordinarily, I’m not a fan of sausage, but here are just a few reasons why we love this product:

  • They taste delicious. We always have a package in our fridge, and these sausages are one of my husband, Bill’s favorite foods.
  • Their chickens are free range and pasture-raised, raised humanely and respectfully, and given access to plenty of natural sunlight and space to roam about. They are never treated with growth hormones or antibiotics.
  • Bilinski’s sausages have NO gross casing– so there is no pork or lamb casing to remove! That’s the main thing that weirds me out about most sausages.
  • All of their sausages are gluten-free and wheat-free.
  • Only whole, clean ingredients are used (you’ll never see generic “spices” or “flavorings” in their ingredients lists!) and each ingredient is always fully listed.

We buy them at MOMs Organic Market or Whole Foods, but if you want to find where they are sold near you, use their store locator.

Combine the protein-packed goodness of these sausages with the fiber-filled veggies and a few simple spices, and you’ll have a dish that is perfect for any meal. You can even put an over-easy egg on top to add even more flavor!

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Savory Sweet Potato Kale Hash

This dish is perfect for any meal but we love it as a filling and nourishing breakfast that is packed with flavor, protein and fiber. 

Course Breakfast
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Author Rachel Druckenmiller

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or avocado oil
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes peeled and diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 6 cups kale destemmed and chopped
  • 5 scallions sliced into rounds
  • 3 Bilinski's sausages Wild Mushroom is delicious!

Instructions

  1. In a medium skillet over medium heat, add a drizzle of olive oil and swirl to coat the pan. Cut sausage in half lengthwise and place cut-side down on skillet. Heat until browned, about 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat and cut into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

  2. Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add sweet potatoes, sage, cumin, salt and pepper and saute for 12-15 minutes or until sweet potatoes are cooked through and fork tender. After about 10 minutes, add garlic and stir to combine. Add a few tablespoons of water to prevent potatoes from sticking and to speed up the cooking process. 

  3. Add kale to sweet potatoes along with a few tablespoons of water and toss to combine. Cover with lid to steam kale, about 2-3 minutes. 

  4. Add diced sausage and scallions and toss everything to combine. Serve warm.

Minty Watermelon Mojito Salad

Mojitos are my favorite cocktail.  The combo of tart lime and smooth mint is so cooling and refreshing and perfect for summer!

Mmm, fresh mint, limes, and seedless cucumber

Mmm, fresh mint, limes, and seedless cucumber

I remember my first mojito experience.  

I had just come home from a semester abroad in Granada, Spain and was really into everything about the Hispanic culture from the food to the music and dancing. I loved their energy, vitality and enthusiasm for life!

When my friend Allyson invited me to go with her and some friends to The Latin Palace in Fells Point shortly after returning from my trip, I was all in. I had a blast as I was led through all sorts of Latin dances for hours!

When it was time to take a break from dancing, I was introduced to what would become my favorite mixed drink – mojitos.

WOW!

It’s been almost 10 years, and I still don’t think I’ve had a mojito that was as perfectly prepared as my first.

As I was looking for recipes to prepare today for a Memorial Day cookout, I stumbled across this one for a minty watermelon mojito salad.

How could I resist?? 

Watermelon + mint + lime + cucumber = the ultimate warm weather refresher.

It’s DELICIOUS and was really simple to prepare, too. This will be a hit at any cookout, picnic or party, and I guarantee kids will love it, too!

Minty Watermelon Mojito Salad

Ridiculously refreshing minty mojito watermelon salad

Ridiculously refreshing minty watermelon mojito salad

Ingredients

  • 3 cups seedless watermelon, cubed (here’s how to pick a perfect watermelon)
  • 1.5 cups seedless cucumber, cubed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, sliced thin (“chiffonade” if we’re being fancy about it)
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • Zest from two limes (here’s the zester I use)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Pinch of black pepper

Click here for the full recipe from one of my new favorite blogs – Stupid Easy Paleo!

Thank you to all of the men and women who selflessly serve our country, especially our friend, Joe, who recently left for a multi-year tour in Germany!

2-Minute Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream!

I scream, you scream, we all scream for (peanut butter) ICE CREAM!

I grew up loving ice cream and had an ice cream cake for every birthday, but since I’ve cut out dairy products, I’ve had to come up with other options.

With the weather getting warmer (finally!) and summer on its way, I wanted to share this recipe to give you a healthier option for ice cream!

Today’s recipe for peanut butter banana ice cream is incredibly simple, kidfriendly, and deliciously dairyfree. 

It turns out JUST LIKE soft serve ice cream in texture and consistency, so I know it will become one of your new favorites!

Even the ingredients are simple. In fact, you probably already have all of them on hand! Not only that, but this is a GREAT way to use up bananas that have seen better days rather than throwing them away 🙂 Just peel and then freeze them so you’re always prepared to make banana ice cream!

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Ingredients

  • 2 ripe bananas, peeled, frozenm and cut into 1/2″ discs
  • 2-3 tablespoons natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of sea salt
  • Optional: 1/4 avocado for extra creaminess

Chocolate Peanut Butter variation: Add 1-2 tablespoons cacao powder (to make peanut butter chocolate ice cream!)

Directions

Banana discs and peanut butter ready to go!

Step 1: Frozen banana discs and peanut butter ready to go!

Step 2: Put the bananas in the food processor (we used a mini one)

Step 2: Put the frozen bananas in the food processor (we used a mini one)

This is the big food processor we use and this is the mini one. You can make the banana ice cream in either one. We bought our mini one at Home Goods for about $28!

Step 3: Grind the bananas until they resemble this gravel-like consistency

Step 3: Grind the bananas until they resemble this gravel-like consistency

Step 4: Keep pulsing until the bananas resemble this consistency and then add in the peanut butter, vanilla extract and salt

Step 4: Keep pulsing until the bananas resemble this consistency and then add in the peanut butter, vanilla extract and salt. If making chocolate peanut butter ice cream, add the cacao powder at this point, too.

Tada! Peanut butter banana ice cream!

Tada! Peanut butter banana ice cream!

10-Minute Broccolini with Cherry Tomatoes and Garlic

Aside from being delicious, the best part about this recipe is that you can whip it up in 10 minutes!

It’s simple, flavorful, and really good for you.

I just started cooking with broccolini in the past few months and really love it! The stalks are thinner than broccoli, so I find that I’m able to eat the whole stalk, which means less food is wasted.

Making this dish also gave us an excuse to keep using our perfectly paleo parmesan cheeze – we couldn’t stop eating it!

If you missed the post from a few months ago about broccoli, here’s why broccoli and relatives of broccoli like broccolini are so good for you! Tom Malterre, one of the most renowned nutrition experts, even calls broccoli “the DNA whisperer.”

10-Minute Broccolini with Cherry Tomatoes & Garlic

This dish was incredible! We will definitely be making it again.

This dish was incredible! We will definitely be making it again.

Ingredients

  • 1-2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil
  • 2 bunches of broccolini, trim off about a 1/2 inch on the bottom end
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 cups (about one container) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup water
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Optional: Paleo Parmesan Cheeze

Directions

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan, and swirl to coat.
  2. Add garlic and sauté  for 30 seconds, stirring frequently.
  3. Add broccolini and cook 2 minutes.
  4. Add water and tomatoes. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook 3 minutes.
  5. Add salt and black pepper; cook, uncovered, 4 minutes or until broccolini is crisp-tender but still bright green.
  6. Top with paleo parmesan cheeze and enjoy!

Green Goddess Guacamole!

Think of a food you dislike.

Maybe you’ve tried it before, maybe you haven’t. Either way, you know you don’t like it, and there’s no way anyone can get you to try it…right?

Until about 4 years ago, guacamole was one of those foods for me. Why? Because I was CONVINCED that guacamole had mayonnaise in it…and I’ve always disliked mayonnaise.

One day at work, we had a healthy cooking demo taught by a health coach like me, and we were learning to make none other than…guacamole!  I had all but made up my mind that I wasn’t going to try it.

Fortunately, it didn’t take long before I realized that it was NOT made with mayonnaise and that everyone else was trying it, so…

I gave in to peer pressure and was shocked to find out I LOVED IT!

What had I been missing??

Ever since that day, I’ve been an avocado and guacamole lover.

Delicious, fresh, and seasonal ingredients for this delicious guac!

Delicious, fresh, and seasonal ingredients for this delicious guac!

Avocados are one of the healthiest foods you can eat AND are known as a beauty detox food. Here are just a few of their awesome health benefits:

  • Heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, vitamins and minerals promote moisturizing from the inside, which means healthy, smooth, radiant skin (a true beauty food!)
  • The healthy fat helps our bodies better absorb antioxidants from other fruits and veggies
  • The antioxidant they contain – glutathione – is a powerful cancer-fighter
  • The combo of good fat and fiber helps control blood sugar

My favorite ways to use avocados are in dips, soups, desserts, mixed in to salads, and (of course!) in guacamole. I found a super simple recipe that used a slightly different combo of ingredients than the usual ones, so I thought I would test it out.

Two of the other ingredients in this guac – cilantro and scallions (AKA green onions) – are also great for you. Cilantro helps the body detoxify and onions are one of the top anti-cancer GBOMBS foods, so enjoy them all you want!

Green Goddess Guacamole

Creamy guacamole goodness

Creamy guacamole goodness

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe avocados, seeded and peeled (here’s how to cut and peel an avocado)
  • 1 tablespoon FRESH lime juice (don’t sub the bottled kind)
  • 3-4 tablespoons green onions, thinly sliced (also called scallions)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (add more to taste)
  • fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • Optional: 1/2 ripe tomato, seeds and pulp removed, chopped

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients and mash with a fork or potato masher until you reach your desired consistency. We like ours to be a bit chunky, so we don’t mash it too much.

We love dipping fresh veggies like carrots, cucumber, celery, red peppers, and sugar snap peas into our guac, along with these tortilla chips!

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Shallots, Cranberries & Pecans

Ingredients for this delicious dish :)

Ingredients for this delicious dish 🙂 I made half the recipe, since I didn’t have enough Brussels sprouts!

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a big fan of Brussels sprouts…and I don’t mean the overly cooked, steamed or boiled kind. Roasting and sautéing these little cancer-fighting cabbages is the best way to make them taste absolutely delicious and turn haters into followers!

I tried a new recipe this week from my favorite blog, Nourishing Meals. It’s a variation of one that I’ve made roasted, but this time it was sautéed. This recipe has become another favorite of mine, as it includes Brussels sprouts, shallots, cranberries, and nuts, which are all anti-cancer, anti-fat storage GBOMBS foods.

The combination of the slightly bitter Brussels sprouts, sweet shallots, tart cranberries, buttery pecans and a hint of salt packs this dish with flavor!

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Shallots, Cranberries & Pecans

Sautéed Brussels Sprouts with Shallots, Cranberries & Pecans

This recipe takes less than 20 minutes from start to finish. I made a few modifications and used pecans instead of the sliced almonds and added some garlic because garlic makes everything taste better!

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced (add these in when you add in the Brussels sprouts)
  • 2 pounds Brussels Sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
  • 1 teaspoon Herbamare or sea salt (you can find Herbamare at any natural food store or online)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, naturally sweetened if possible
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Click here for the full recipe from Nourishing Meals!

Not Your Mama's Brussels Sprouts! 3 Recipes You Have to Try

On behalf of anyone who has ever subjected you to boiled, steamed, or otherwise overcooked Brussels sprouts…

I apologize.

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Many of us had traumatic experiences with certain foods while we were growing up and have written them off as adults, and rightfully so. Overcooked Brussels sprouts are often one of those foods, and when they are boiled to death, they do smell (and taste) pretty terrible!

Here’s the good news – Brussels sprouts have been reinvented and taste completely different than they did when we were kids. I promise. Those of us who have sworn off these stinky little cabbages since childhood are giving them a second chance as adults…and are loving them!

Not only are Brussels sprouts delicious, but they incredibly good for you! They are:

  • A source of over 20 essential vitamins and minerals our body needs to function at its best
  • Potent cancer fighters. Check out this post for more about the amazing cancer-fighting properties of green, cruciferous veggies like Brussels sprouts
  • Chock full of fiber. You know, that stuff that keeps us full, controls our blood sugar, and keeps us “regular”

Check out 3 of my favorite Brussels sprouts recipes below!

The first one, in particular, will convert even lifelong Brussels sprouts haters. I prepared it for Thanksgiving last year, and someone who had only had Brussels sprouts boiled tried them and LOVED them. He told his wife he would eat them if she prepared them this way. Happy Cooking 🙂

ImageMaple-Roasted Brussels Sprouts. This is my absolute favorite way to prepare Brussels sprouts. The recipe is super simple, too! Follow these tips/tricks for optimal results: flip Brussels sprouts over halfway through cooking time (at the 10 minute mark), so they cook 10 minutes per side. Do not overcook them – they should still be a brighter green (vs. a dull/muted green). These are SO good! You have to try them.

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Shallots. Inspired by the mini Brussels sprouts and shallots I received in my Hometown Harvest bag last week, I made up this recipe.

Ingredients & Directions: 2.5 cups Brussels sprouts, left whole (mini ones, if you can find them!); 2 shallots, sliced; 2 cloves of garlic, minced; 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil, melted; sea salt & black pepper, to taste.

I mixed all of the ingredients together and then roasted them on a baking sheet in the oven at 400F for 18-20 minutes, tossing them around in the pan at the 10-minute mark. They were really tasty! The shallots added a subtle sweetness. Bill and I devoured the whole bowl at dinner.

Smoky Lemony Shredded Brussels Sprouts – Smoked paprika has a delicious, deep flavor and is something we just started using last month! It can be tricky to find, so you might have to order it online or find it at Whole Foods, Fresh Market, MOMs, or Wegmans. I modified a few things in the recipe (but feel free to follow it “as is”):

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  • Used coconut oil instead of olive oil since coconut oil is more heat stable
  • Added 1/4-1/3 cup low sodium vegetable broth to help the Brussels sprouts cook down. I did this after the Brussels sprouts had been cooking for a few minutes. Just add it in a few tablespoons at a time until the Brussels sprouts soften.
  • Used 2 cloves of garlic instead of 1 (I love garlic!)
  • Added in 1/4 cup of toasted, chopped walnuts for some crunch!
  • Added closer to 1 tablespoon of lemon juice instead of 2 teaspoons (3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon)

What is your favorite way to prepare Brussels sprouts? Feel free to share your recipes below!

Not Your Mama’s Brussels Sprouts! 3 Recipes You Have to Try

On behalf of anyone who has ever subjected you to boiled, steamed, or otherwise overcooked Brussels sprouts…

I apologize.

Image

Many of us had traumatic experiences with certain foods while we were growing up and have written them off as adults, and rightfully so. Overcooked Brussels sprouts are often one of those foods, and when they are boiled to death, they do smell (and taste) pretty terrible!

Here’s the good news – Brussels sprouts have been reinvented and taste completely different than they did when we were kids. I promise. Those of us who have sworn off these stinky little cabbages since childhood are giving them a second chance as adults…and are loving them!

Not only are Brussels sprouts delicious, but they incredibly good for you! They are:

  • A source of over 20 essential vitamins and minerals our body needs to function at its best
  • Potent cancer fighters. Check out this post for more about the amazing cancer-fighting properties of green, cruciferous veggies like Brussels sprouts
  • Chock full of fiber. You know, that stuff that keeps us full, controls our blood sugar, and keeps us “regular”

Check out 3 of my favorite Brussels sprouts recipes below!

The first one, in particular, will convert even lifelong Brussels sprouts haters. I prepared it for Thanksgiving last year, and someone who had only had Brussels sprouts boiled tried them and LOVED them. He told his wife he would eat them if she prepared them this way. Happy Cooking 🙂

ImageMaple-Roasted Brussels Sprouts. This is my absolute favorite way to prepare Brussels sprouts. The recipe is super simple, too! Follow these tips/tricks for optimal results: flip Brussels sprouts over halfway through cooking time (at the 10 minute mark), so they cook 10 minutes per side. Do not overcook them – they should still be a brighter green (vs. a dull/muted green). These are SO good! You have to try them.

IMG_3345

Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Shallots. Inspired by the mini Brussels sprouts and shallots I received in my Hometown Harvest bag last week, I made up this recipe.

Ingredients & Directions: 2.5 cups Brussels sprouts, left whole (mini ones, if you can find them!); 2 shallots, sliced; 2 cloves of garlic, minced; 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil, melted; sea salt & black pepper, to taste.

I mixed all of the ingredients together and then roasted them on a baking sheet in the oven at 400F for 18-20 minutes, tossing them around in the pan at the 10-minute mark. They were really tasty! The shallots added a subtle sweetness. Bill and I devoured the whole bowl at dinner.

Smoky Lemony Shredded Brussels Sprouts – Smoked paprika has a delicious, deep flavor and is something we just started using last month! It can be tricky to find, so you might have to order it online or find it at Whole Foods, Fresh Market, MOMs, or Wegmans. I modified a few things in the recipe (but feel free to follow it “as is”):

IMG_3374

  • Used coconut oil instead of olive oil since coconut oil is more heat stable
  • Added 1/4-1/3 cup low sodium vegetable broth to help the Brussels sprouts cook down. I did this after the Brussels sprouts had been cooking for a few minutes. Just add it in a few tablespoons at a time until the Brussels sprouts soften.
  • Used 2 cloves of garlic instead of 1 (I love garlic!)
  • Added in 1/4 cup of toasted, chopped walnuts for some crunch!
  • Added closer to 1 tablespoon of lemon juice instead of 2 teaspoons (3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon)

What is your favorite way to prepare Brussels sprouts? Feel free to share your recipes below!

Why Broccoli Is Awesome…and The BEST Roasted Broccoli Recipe

When I was a kid, I put parmesan cheese on EVERYTHING.

One of the fun things I used to do at dinner was pretend it was “snowing” on the “trees” and coated my steamed broccoli with a generous helping of Kraft parmesan cheese. I wouldn’t eat broccoli without it!

Since then, I’ve discovered that cheese and other dairy products were the key triggers for my ear and upper respiratory infections as a child and young adult and can wreak havoc on the body…so no more snowy trees for me. The good news is that I’m feeling so much better now and have gotten rid of those issues completely. I’ll be writing more about my personal experience with the downsides of dairy in future posts (If you’re interested, start watching the video on the link at around minute 5:00).

Fortunately, I’ve learned how to enjoy broccoli without cheese. One of my favorite ways to prepare broccoli is roasting it. If you grew up eating overcooked, canned, or steamed-to-death vegetables, give them at least one more chance and roast them. You will be amazed by how delicious and flavorful they are!

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Broccoli is an incredibly healthy food and is also one of the GBOMBS. Here are just a few reasons why broccoli is awesome and we should eat more of it!

  • It’s anti-inflammatory and detoxifying. Inflammation and toxicity are the two main reasons we are so sick and holding on to extra weight, so we want to do as much as we can to reduce them!
  • It’s rich in fiber. Fiber keeps us full, so we eat less, and it keeps things moving in our digestive system.
  • It contains lutein, which helps to fight heart disease by preventing the thickening of arteries.
  • It’s rich in calcium. Calcium strengthens and promotes bone growth and health, which helps prevent osteoporosis.

Broccoli retains the most nutrients when eaten raw or lightly steamed or cooked, but most of us aren’t eating enough vegetables anyway, so it’s better to eat them roasted than not eat them at all, so roast away!

Now that we’ve established how great broccoli is, let’s talk about what to do with it.

This week in our Hometown Harvest bag, we got a hefty bunch of broccoli, and when I got home from a four-day business trip, I was ready to play in the kitchen and try a new recipe. 

This garlicky broccoli recipe is going to become a staple in our house. It’s SUPER simple and tasty. You are going to LOVE it.

It’s more fitting to call it what it really is…Crack Broccoli.

Seriously, it’s that good…you may have to stop yourself from eating the whole darn tray. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Garlicky Roasted (AKA Crack) Broccoli

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I made a few modifications to the original ingredient list and point them out below.

Ingredients

1 pound broccoli
1/4 cup olive oil (or coconut oil!)
1 tablespoon rice vinegar (we substituted raw apple cider vinegar because we didn’t have rice vinegar)
6 cloves garlic, peeled
1 teaspoon salt
Red pepper flakes
Lemon wedges, to garnish

Here is the full recipe from one of my favorite recipe bloggers, The Kitchn! (and, nope, that’s not a spelling error 🙂 just a cool name for a website!)

10 Super Bowl Snack Attack Recipes

If the rumors are true, this year’s Super Bowl commercials will beat out last year’s (which shouldn’t be too hard), but it’ll be tough to beat the excitement of last year’s game!

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As one of the biggest food days of the year approaches, many of us are putting together our Super Bowl menus and deciding what our contribution will be to the ultimate game day potluck.

Why not try something new this year? Something delicious…and nourishing.

Check out these healthy, party-friendly recipes, and let me know if you try any out for yourself. Enjoy!

  1. Best Guacamole Ever (& a Video!) by Cooking Stoned
  2. Super Easy Kale Chips (Basic, Italian & Japanese versions!) by Elizabeth Rider
  3. Chipotle Roasted Chickpeas by Half Baked Harvest
  4. Better Than Store-bought Hummus by Inspired Taste
  5. Paleo Bang Bang Shrimp by Paleo Fondue
  6. Homemade Salsa by Lexi’s Clean Kitchen
  7. Oven Baked Sweet Potato Fries by Nom Nom Paleo
  8. 4-Bean Chili by Crackers on the Couch
  9. Spicy Black Bean Hummus by FitSugar
  10. TexMex Dip by Gracious Pantry

Do you have any favorite healthy game day recipes to share?

Feel free to let everyone know in the comment section below!

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