Food

Growing Your Own Food

Growing your own food can be intimidating and time consuming if you’re new to the idea. However, the health benefits of growing your own food and immediately eating fruits and veggies after you harvest them are totally worth spending a little time, energy and money into growing your own food.

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Paleo “Green Monkey” Smoothie Bowl

I love acai bowls. By love, I mean that I could eat them every day. However, it’s a pretty expensive habit, whether eating out or stocking the house with pure acai frozen packets. Alternatively, I occasionally make acai or other smoothie bowls for myself for breakfast or after a workout if I don’t feel like a full meal before dinner. With summer coming up, I will be craving them even more, so I have been testing out some new combinations lately.

This recipe that I came up with is really healthy, limits natural sugars, is packed with nutrients, is filling, and tastes great! It’s also a good way to incorporate more gelatin into your diet, and get the amazing benefits of including gelatin in your diet on a regular basis. If you’re not familiar with the benefits of gelatin, check out this post by Wellness Mama, this one on Chris Kresser’s blog, or this post from Civilized Caveman for more information.

There are two types of gelatin: regular (red can – which gels) and collagen hydrolysate (green can – which does not gel). This post on Butter Nutrition is a great resource for which type go gelatin is right for you, but the green can is cold water soluble so it usually works bests in smoothies and bowls. I keep both around the house and buy the Great Lakes brand. Definitely make that the brand you buy is grass fed!

Gelatin/collagen may not be healthy for everyone, so consult a physician or nutritionist if you have any questions about supplementing gelatin in your diet.

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Cooking Inspiration from the Contents of my CSA Box

As I mentioned in a previous post about CSA’s, I recently joined a local CSA and have been happily receiving large boxes of veggies. I’ve made a commitment to using all of the items that I receive in my box, so I don’t waste any food. Sometimes that means getting a little creative, especially if it’s the first time I’ve ever seen the vegetable!

Contents of our last box:

  • Red Leaf Lettuce (lots!)
  • Swiss Chard
  • Kale
  • Basil
  • Radishes
  • Turnips
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Baby Broccoli
  • Sugar Snap Peas
  • Mixed Bean Sprouts (used these as a topping for salads)

Surprisingly, the contents of the box goes way faster than I would have expected! I guess I eat more veggies when they’re around and I don’t want them to go to waste 🙂

So how did I make use of all of this for just the two of us?

  • Salads! Lots and lots of large salads with mixed kale and lettuce with tons of toppings:

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  • Grilled Chicken Thighs with sautéed summer squash (from the previous week’s box) topped with a basil pesto. I saved the left over pesto and used it for various other dishes & on eggs throughout the week.

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  • Sautéed Baby Broccoli & Kale using a bit of fat and seasonings (for side dishes). I’d also often top the kale with leftover pesto.
  • Creamy Coconut and Lemon Chard – I don’t have a picture of my personal creation, but this recipe is so incredibly simple and delicious. Since we received chard two weeks in a row, I made this dish a second time and added in grilled halibut to make a full meal out of it. SO good!
  • Simple Steamed Baby Broccoli with lemon pepper, garlic powder, and a bit of sea salt for side dishes with a simple protein (i.e. grilled chicken or fish).
  • Marinated Roasted Beets from Nom Nom Paleo…LOVE these. My husband isn’t usually a big fan of beets, but he said they were awesome. He even asked for a second helping the next day for his lunch at work!

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Finally, we used the sugar snap peas (and carrots) throughout the week as snacks for around the house and to take to work.

Hopefully, this gives you a glance at how we eat at home on a regular basis as well as some ideas for new recipes to try!

 

What are some of your favorite recipes made with any of these ingredients? Share with us below!

10 Satisfying Paleo Travel Snacks

It can be pretty difficult to stay healthy on the road, especially when trying to make good choices when there are a limited number of available healthy options (in the airport or on the airplane).

Over the years, I have learned that once I get to a certain level of hunger, I tend to make poor food choices or get hangry.

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Story of my life….

The solution to this problem for the sake of myself (and my husband) is to bring along a variety of healthy snacks and foods I enjoy in order to stave off hunger and to be able to eat well on the road.

Hopefully, this list below will help you find healthy snacks to bring along on your travels to stay well fed around the globe.

Paleo Travel Snacks

1. Fresh Fruit – My favorite types to bring along are ones that travel well and are easy to eat on the go with little to no fuss: apples, grapes, tangerines/oranges, cherries, blueberries, peaches, nectarines, pears, and bananas. Bananas need to be eaten relatively soon unless you like mushy brown ones, but they are great to eat while waiting for your flight, especially in the morning. Apples and bananas are usually pretty easy to find and purchase at the airport for a snack too!

2. Fresh Cut Vegetables – This one does take a little prep beforehand (unless you get a bag of baby carrots), but I like having a few low calorie nutritious snacks around. My favorites are carrots, snap peas, sliced cucumbers, sliced zucchinis, cherry tomatoes, and bell peppers.

One note: if you’re traveling overseas and you have to eat any fruit or vegetables you bring on board the plane before you land.

3. Nuts & Seeds – Easy, quick calorie dense snacks that have a substantial amount of fat and some protein. My favorites are macadamias, almonds, brazil nuts, pistachios, pepitas, and sunflower seeds. You can always create your own trail mix with some dried fruit, shredded coconut, and dark chocolate chips (like Enjoy Life Mini Chips) mixed in too!

4. Gone Nuts! (Cacao) – Of course my favorite packs are the cacao ones, but they have other varieties as well.

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5. Jerky –  Sugar-free jerky is a great source of easy protein on the go (turkey, beef, bison, etc). I like the Tanka varieties, they are really tasty.

6. Epic Bars – An easy alternative to jerky and good source of protein too (bison is my favorite, but love the lamb and turkey too!). (Side note: my interaction with the customs officers when we arrived in New Zealand and they saw these in my bag was pretty hilarious…they had never seen them before and were incredibly curious/intrigued! They didn’t have a problem with them though and they saved our lives on many a hike throughout the trip 🙂 )

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7. Dang Toasted Coconut Chips – They comes in a few varieties (including without sugar) but the regular and chocolate covered ones are my personal favorites. SO good!

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8. Dark Chocolate – (notice the chocolate trend here?!?!) – Great for a little treat on the road when you feel like something sweet. It’s a healthy alternative to the candy bars in the airport because it actually has antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to support your health! Alter Ego, Primal Chocolate, and Theo are a few of my favorite brands.

9. That’s It Bars – These are great – just made up of dried fruit. They come in a variety of flavors and are my husband’s favorite snack. Pear/apple, mango/apple, and apricot/apple are T’s favorites. I really like the apple/cherry ones too!

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10. Larabars – Some varieties are healthier than others, but I find the blueberry muffin, apple pie, cashew cookie, and coconut varieties to be paleo friendly.

 

What are your favorite healthy snacks to travel with? Share in the comments below!

Should You Join a CSA?

Recently, I decided to join a CSA for the first time and thought it would be fitting to share some information about CSAs with you. If you haven’t heard of a CSA or you are potentially looking to join one, but aren’t sure, this post is for you!

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Paleo Cinnamon Granola Recipe

When I first started eating Paleo, one of the things I missed the most was granola.  An acaí bowl just isn’t the same without granola in it. I couldn’t really live this way, so I did some research, and stumbled upon a Paleo granola recipe. I tried it out, and it ended up being pretty easy to make and absolutely delicious. After making it, I decided to modify it to make my own recipe because I wanted to use a lot less almond flour than the original recipe called for.

This recipe I am about to share is the first one I had really attempted to make my own, and it is one of my absolute favorites.
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Mission Completed: Learned How To Perfectly Fry An Egg

I love breakfast, especially breakfast involving eggs. I could eat breakfast for any meal (who needs lunch food? It’s usually overrated). So, normally, breakfast and eggs are a must have every day for me. I generally mix-up the different ways I eat eggs…scrambled with a variety of ingredients, an omelette, poached, or over-easy. I have always liked sunny-side up eggs when I go out for breakfast, but never really attempted to make eggs sunny-side up at home because I was always intimidated by the process (lame, I know). I have tried a few times before and always failed to make it sunny-side up, so I just stopped going there. My eggs basically always came out folded over anyways, so it seemed better just to go with over-easy method I knew.

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