Monthly Archives: September 2015

Party time! (veggie and fruit dips)

Whoa, talk about MIA. Apparently I forgot how to blog the past few weeks. Eek! 

Well, I’m back and I actually do have a lot to share ๐Ÿ™‚ My husband and I just wrapped up our 20 days eating whole30. I know, I know, if it was only 20 days, it wasn’t a whole 30, but it’s better than nothing, right? And at least now we know we won’t die doing it next time. If we can make it 20 days we can definitely make it 30. Eventually we will do it again. The right way ๐Ÿ˜‰

For those of you who don’t know, whole30 is very similar to paleo, but slightly stricter. No alcohol. No sweeteners of any kind. No grains. No dairy. Basically no processed foods. Just whole wholesome foods. Veggies, meat, fruit, nuts, seeds, and healthy oils. www.whole30.com has all the info you need and delicious recipes too. If you are interested ๐Ÿ™‚ I definitely was able to add some brand new favorite recipes to my recipe box, which is awesome!

Okay, so the main reason we didn’t make it to 30 days was because this past weekend was my birthday weekend and we wanted to have a celebration that included red wine and chocolate chip cookies, so whole20 seemed reasonable. 

  

So, last night was the big night, and we had a great time. We were able to celebrate and eat great paleo friendly food at the same time! If you’ve ever thought about eating paleo but wondered what you would eat/serve at a party, here are some helpful hints. We had quite the spread, and 90% of it was 100% paleo. (And super easy!) 

  I think many people don’t change their diets because they are scared of how difficult it might be, or how boring, or restricted they will feel. I promise, once you get the hang of it, paleo is NOT boring. (Search  my hashtag #paleodoesnotequalboring and you’ll see for yourself) 

Okay so back to the food. We served fresh and roasted veggies, and I made a yummy veggie dip to go with them. (I’ll share the recipe below) we had fresh fruit with 3 different fruit dips. Vanilla, chocolate, and pumpkin spice. (I’ll share that recipe too) there was chicken apple sausages (aidells has some paleo friendly flavors) for dessert we had paleo chocolate chip cookies (recipe from www.primalpalate.com) fresh guacamole and jacksons honest potato chips were on the menu too,  and sheep’s milk cheese and uncured salami also. I think it’s safe to say we did not go hungry. 

  There are tons of healthy options when it comes to party foods and appetizers. Sometimes you just have to get a little creative, and sometimes you just have to go back to basics. Fruits and veggies always work. 
So here’s the part you’ve been waiting for…..fruit and veggie dips recipes! 

Tahini dip (recipe from www.paleoplan.com)

1/2 cup tahini

1/2 cup water 

Juice of 1/2 lemon squeezed

3 finely chopped garlic cloves

Pinch of salt

Combine in a bowl until smooth. Sprinkle paprika on top. Dip any veggie you want ๐Ÿ™‚ I love it with roasted cauliflower! 

Vanilla and chocolate fruit dips (www.everydaypaleo.com)

2 ripe bananas

1 cup coconut milk (I use canned)

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tsp coconut flour

1 1/2 tablespoons cacao powder 

Combine all ingredients (except cacao) in food processor. Blend until smooth. Pour half into a storage container or serving dish. Add cacao into remaining portion and blend again until combined. Now you have a vanilla dip and a chocolate dip. 

I did a second batch and instead of cacao for the second half I put about 2 tablespoons of Nikki’s pumpkin spice coconut butter in and blended. All three dips were quite runny, but after refrigerating they thickened up a bit. We dipped apples, bananas, strawberries and grapes in them and they were all delicious! ๐Ÿ˜

  Hopefully you will find these ideas helpful. Even if you don’t choose to eat paleo all the time, you still can create some healthy AND delicious party foods. Hope you get to enjoy these at your next celebration! 

Snack Time!!

Hello again! I’m back! 

So this past weekend my husband and I got this crazy idea to try Whole30. To be honest we are going to do whole20. My birthday weekend was 20 days away from the day we decided to start so we thought it would be a good compromise. 

Okay, whole30 is basically paleo, BUT you have to remove all forms of sugar including artificial sweeteners, even honey and agave. Sugar will come from fruit only for the next 20 days. You also have to remove ALL dairy, even if it’s grassfed. The only “dairy” allowed is ghee. No grains of any kind. No alcohol. And no home made paleo “sweets or treats” so no coconut flour tortillas or almond flour muffins. 

Basically you need to eat only whole foods. Meat, veggies, seeds, nuts, healthy fats, and fruit for 30 days. I know, I know, sounds totally boring….but I have to be honest, the past 5 days haven’t really been all that boring, or that bad at all.

I have found quite a bit of support and recipes on Instagram. The best site so far is @whole30recipes on Instagram. Check them out if you’re interested.  The food looks sooo good! You can get more info about whole30 at whole30.com

Ok, I’m totally going to jump to a new subject now. Hopefully you will find this helpful. 

My niece is starting her second year away at college. I’m so proud of her. She sees all of my posts and recently told me that she wants to try to eat a little better. She asked me about healthy snacks, so this post is inspired by my Haleighโค๏ธ 

So here goes!

One of my favorite snacks is bananas dipped in almond butter. Make sure you buy an almond butter that does not have any added sugar. My personal favorites are almondipity (local to my area) and Trader Joes. 

  You can also dip apples, strawberries, carrots, or celery. All are yummy healthy choices, and pretty easy to take to-go.
Another favorite healthy, and super-easy-to-take-with-you snack is larabars. My favorite flavor is pineapple upside down cake, but it is super hard to find. Coconut chocolate is yummy too, but these 3 flavor are whole30 approved so that’s what I have right now. 

  
Nuts and seeds are also a great option. Be careful though because sugar is added to almost everything. Sometimes sugar is called dextrose or sucrolose. So watch out for those guys too. Anyway, raw nuts are great for you. You can mix them with unsweetened coconut and dark chocolate chips for a little trail mix. Or you can eat them plain. I also found this yummy “granola” that is actually nuts and seeds made by larabar that I really enjoy. Sometimes on top of some strawberries. Yum! 

  I don’t think these bars are 100% paleo but they are a pretty healthy snack too. Made by Two Moms in the Raw. We found them at Costco. 
  
Next up eggs! Hard boiled eggs are a super easy snack. Boil a dozen and they’ll stay good in the fridge for about a week. Sprinkle a little salt on them and eat up! A little trick I learned is to keep the carton and write HARD BOILED on it so that when they are in the fridge with your raw eggs you won’t accidently grab the wrong ones. That could be messy! 

  
Uncured salami is yum too. I love to roll up some sliced avacado in mine. Gallo makes this uncured salami. Not sure it’s 100% paleo or not, but occasionally we eat it.

  
Apple chips and other dried fruits are another great grab and go. Trader Joes has a lot of options. Again, watch for added sugar. Coconut sugar is okay in moderation. Coconut chips are good too. 

  
Last up, good ole veggies. Cucumber, baby carrots, sweet peppers and avacado are a few of my favs. I found a dip at whole foods called babaganoush that is great for veggie dipping. If you aren’t paleo then get a little hummus or make your own if that helps you. 

  
Bottom line is, if you want to be healthier, eat LESS sugar and processed carbs, and eat MORE fruits, veggies, seeds, and nuts ๐Ÿ™‚