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Paleo Beefaroni

If you liked beefaroni when you were a kid, you will love this healthy grownup Paleo Beefaroni!

paleo beefaroni

Sometimes people who don’t know me really well tell me they are intimidated to cook for me. The prevailing thought is that I only eat gourmet, chef-y kind of foods. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. I’m going to admit something to you now: my all-time favorite go-to comfort food is a bowl of pasta with ketchup. I know… gross, right? Granted, I use chickpea or almond pasta and sometimes I use homemade ketchup, but still… pasta with ketchup. I love it… don’t judge me…

When I was a kid, I ate lots of food from cans. My siblings and I loved it. Our cupboards were filled with canned raviolis, beefaroni, spaghetti-O’s, and more. I remember coming home from school, opening up a can, and eating straight from the can with a fork without even heating it up. I wouldn’t touch that food today, but I do love to take these simple comfort foods and healthy them up.

A lot of people think I’m a vegan or a vegetarian. Nope.  It’s just another common misconception. I’m not a vegan. Not even a vegetarian.  I do go through veg phases, but I feel best with a little meat in my diet. But, I feel strongly about making sure that meat is organic and grass-fed. Non-organic beef has too many hormones in it that increase estrogen in your body… and this is not good for anyone. Combining great quality beef with a paleo pasta (I used a chickpea pasta here), turns old fashioned beefaroni into a nutrient-packed healthy meal. Hmmm…. maybe next time I’ll add a little kale or spinach…

When I made this paleo beefaroni recipe, I made a huge pot of it because instinctively I knew that it would be a bit hit with everyone I came in contact with.

If you know me at all, you know that there is always a pot of something on the stove — oftentimes, something experimental. And, if you open my fridge — which I encourage all of my guests to do freely and often — you will always find a few leftovers. So, I made a huge pot of paleo beefaroni, and I put the big pot in the fridge. Over the next few days, it was gone. It’s really good and it reheats really well.

So, make a big pot of this. I mean, if you have guests or a big family, or some pasta-loving friends, make sure you at least double this recipe. You won’t be sorry.

For another great pasta fix, try my recipe for Paleo Pasta Carbonara.

paleo beefaronipaleo beefaroni

Here are some of the healing powers in this paleo beefaroni recipe:

Chickpeas actually help calm the spirit. They relieve anxiety and soothe irritability… it kind of makes you realize why hummus is so popular… I used a chickpea penne for this recipe and it was awesome!

Beef is good for a lot of ailments. It’s good for edema/swelling in the body, it helps many people with their weak back and knees and, believe it or not, it’s good for that bloated, distended feeling we sometimes get in our stomachs. In the olden days, beef was stewed for hours so that the liquid could be sipped to combat chronic diarrhea. I recommend using grass-fed organic ground beef for this recipe.

Onions are great for your immune system; they are a natural antihistamine. Recently, I recommended that a patient with bronchitis put sliced raw onions in her socks when she went to sleep… she woke up so much better; they actually can rid the body of bacteria. (I know I’ve told you this before, but it really is awesome!) Onion is a superhero in the food world!

In Chinese medicine, we use tomatoes to aid in digestion and to help detoxify the body. They are also good to combat excess cholesterol, lessen inflammation and curb asthma. Tomatoes can also quench thirst, and they can help fight some kidney infections. You can add as many fresh tomatoes as you like to this recipe.

paleo beefaroni

Paleo Beefaroni
Author: 
Recipe type: pasta
Cuisine: paleo, comfort food, beef, meat
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
This is 100% more delicious than old-fashioned canned beefaroni. This paleo version is delicious, simple, and so healthy!
Ingredients
  • 8 oz pasta (I used this paleo chickpea pasta), but you can use an almond pasta to keep this totally Paleo
  • 1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 24 oz jar of marinara or spaghetti sauce (I like this one)
  • 1 lb grass-fed, organic ground beef
  • 1 med onion, chopped
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • Parmesan cheese (optional) (I used a vegan Parmesan)
Instructions
  1. Cook pasta al dente. Note: when cooking paleo pastas, I recommend checking them at least 2 or 3 minutes sooner than the package recommends; if you overcook it even a little, it turns into glue! When it's done, drain it.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.
  3. Add the onions and beef and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Cook, stirring, and breaking up the beef with a wooden spoon, until the meat is no longer pink and the onions are softened.
  5. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to low and simmer 10 minutes.
  6. Add the drained pasta to the meat sauce. Stir gently to combine.
  7. Ladle into bowls.
  8. Serve with Parmesan cheese if desired.

paleo beefaroni

Paleo Meatloaf

Sometimes you just need a comforting paleo meatloaf… and oh how good the leftovers are…

paleo meatloaf

I’m a pretty fickle foodie. One month I’m all gung-ho vegan and then another month I’m all about the meat. This month I’m a little bit vegan and a little bit meat-y. But, I am almost always a Paleo eater. I learned many years ago that my body feels best without grains and without dairy. But, if I eat grass-fed organic meat, I’m also good. So, believe you me, I love to take advantage of those facts.

This meatloaf came to be last week when I was craving meat. I didn’t even realize it at the time, but all week long I was making recipes out of various types of ground meat. It’s making me laugh now when I think back on Steve’s face when I put a different variety of meatballs in front of him several meals in a row. Then, I moved on to meatloaf. Which I happen to love.

Truth be told, I love meatloaf, but nobody else in my house does. So, that means there’s a boat-load of leftover meatloaf in my fridge each time I make it. Have you ever made a leftover meatloaf wrap for lunch… OMG it’s sooooo good. And this time, I even made a bolognese sauce out of a few slices. Then, I made a sweet potato hash with meatloaf chunks one day. I don’t know why, but my family will eat all of these reconstituted meatloaf recipes, but they back away from the fresh thing. Go figure.

I’ve probably made hundreds of different types of meatloaf over the years. I figured it was about time I made a traditional meatloaf that was also paleo-friendly.

Take my word for it, you are not going to miss the bread in this meatloaf. And your gut will thank you. Oh, and your tastebuds will be pretty happy too…

This meatloaf has no grains and no dairy. It’s made with homemade ketchup, but you can buy a jar of paleo ketchup if you’d prefer to use that. I hid some hemp seeds in the loaf for some extra nutrition and I ground up some zucchini for a little added moisture. I think the next time I make it, I may even try to substitute some mushrooms for the zucchini and see how that tastes.

Bottom line: even if your family says no to meatloaf — like my crazy crew — make this anyway, because you will love it, and the leftovers are amazing!

If you like this recipe for paleo meatloaf, you will also love my recipe for Paleo Cheese-Stuffed Meatballs!

paleo meatloafpaleo meatloaf

Here are some of the awesome healing powers of this paleo meatloaf:

Beef is good for a lot of ailments. It’s good for edema/swelling in the body, it helps many people with their weak back and knees and, believe it or not, it’s good for that bloated, distended feeling we sometimes get in our stomachs. In the olden days, beef was stewed for hours so that the liquid could be sipped to combat chronic diarrhea. I use grass-fed beef whenever possible.

Onions are great for your immune system; they are a natural antihistamine. Recently, I recommended that a patient with bronchitis put sliced raw onions in her socks when she went to sleep… she woke up so much better; they actually can rid the body of bacteria. (I know I’ve told you this before, but it really is awesome!) Onion is a superhero in the food world!

Parsley has been shown to reduce tumors in the lungs and to neutralize the effects of carcinogens, including cigarette smoke. It is high in vitamins A and C, and is good for your heart. This herb is also a natural breath freshener. So, if you have a chance to use more than a few sprigs as a garnish, go for it.

Hemp seeds are a superfood. They are high in protein, easily digestible, and contain a full complement of amino acids. They contain disease-fighting phytonutrients that are good for your blood, immune system, tissues and skin. Hemp contains a specific fatty acid that acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory. It also helps balance hormones, making it a great choice to fight the symptoms of PMS. This super seed is also good for your liver and your brain.

Zucchini cools your body off and makes you feel better during those hot days of summer. It helps your body release excess heat and it will make your mind feel more calm.

In eastern medicine, nuts are known to be good for your brain, heart, skin and reproductive system. Almonds are particularly nutritious. They are a good source of protein and they give you energy. And, they are gluten-free. Almonds will help relieve a cough and asthma and are also good for constipation. This recipe uses almond flour.

In Chinese medicine, we use tomatoes to aid in digestion and to help detoxify the body. They are also good to combat excess cholesterol, lessen inflammation and curb asthma. Tomatoes can also quench thirst, and they can help fight some kidney infections.

paleo meatloaf

Paleo Meatloaf
Author: 
Recipe type: paleo, whole30
Cuisine: meatloaf, comfort food
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
This meatloaf is comfort food to the max. It's got everything you need and want and it makes for the best leftovers ever!
Ingredients
  • 1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 lb ground beef
  • 1 small zucchini, grated and squeezed as dry as possible
  • ⅓ cup almond flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 Tbs ketchup
  • ⅓ cup minced fresh parsley
  • ⅓ cup hemp seeds
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. Line a 9x5-in. loaf pan with parchment paper.
  3. In a skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.
  4. Add the onion and some salt and pepper.
  5. Cook, stirring, until the onions begin to soften, then add the garlic and stir for an additional 30 seconds.
  6. In a large bowl, combine the ground meat, squeezed grated zucchini, almond flour, eggs, ketchup, parsley, and hemp seeds, and cooked onion mixture.
  7. Get in there with your hands, and mush it up until combined.
  8. Put the meat mixture into your lined loaf pan and spread it out evenly.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes, then spread the ketchup on the top and bake for an additional 40 minutes, or until its' cooked through.
  10. Remove from oven and let cook slightly.
  11. Slice and enjoy.
  12. Store the leftovers in the fridge and make lots of great stuff with it all week!

paleo meatloaf

Cheeseburger Soup

This cheeseburger soup is dairy-free and it really tastes like a cheeseburger in a bowl!

cheeseburger soup

Everyone is always asking me what my favorite food is and what my favorite recipe is. I can never decide. And I am never indecisive. I am good that way — I can make a decision quickly and confidently… usually. Except when I’m asked this question. But if you ask Steve this same question, he will tell you, without any hesitation, that cheeseburger soup is his all-time favorite meal.

The cheesy flavor comes from cashews and nutritional yeast. When you blend these up with some chipotle chilies for extra flavor… it’s like an awesome cheese sauce coating all of the amazing grass-fed beef in your bowl. It’s like magic!

Words cannot do this soup justice. When I was a fairly new blogger, I posted this recipe and it’s been a favorite ever since. It’s a cheeseburger in a bowl. A cheeseburger in soup form. It’s the most satisfying thing I have eaten in a long long time. And yet, it’s dairy-free and has so many nutrients that you will be doing your body a favor by eating it. Can this all possibly be true? YES!

I can’t take credit for coming up with the idea for this recipe; that credit goes to Kelly at The Spunky Coconut — and it’s genius!

If you like this recipe, you should also try my recipe for Slow Cooker Vegetable Minestrone — after all, having some veggies to balance your meat is always a good thing.

cheeseburger soup

Here are some of the ingredients that make this soup so good for you:

Beef is good for a lot of ailments. It’s good for edema/swelling in the body, it helps many people with their weak back and knees and, believe it or not, it’s good for that bloated, distended feeling we sometimes get in our stomachs. In the olden days, beef was stewed for hours so that the liquid could be sipped to combat chronic diarrhea. I try to buy organic, grass-fed beef whenever possible — and it’s become pretty easy to find it in ground beef form in lots of markets!

Onions are great for your immune system; they are a natural antihistamine. Recently, I recommended that a patient with bronchitis put sliced raw onions in her socks when she went to sleep… she woke up so much better. (I know I’ve told you this before, but it really is awesome!) Onion is a superhero in the food world!

Cashews are really a multi-tasking nut. I use them all the time so I say it all the time: Cashews have a lower fat content than most other nuts. Most of the fat in cashews is unsaturated and is made up of oleic acid; this is the same acid that is found in olive oil, making these nuts a heart-healty choice. I know some of you have a problem finding raw nuts sometimes — I’m happy to try to help you locate them if you need shopping suggestions, so just leave a comment and I will try to help. I buy then whenever and wherever I see them. I’m also lucky enough to live near a Whole Foods, so I sometimes buy them from the bulk bins here.

Nutritional yeast gives things a cheese-y taste without using any dairy and it adds amino acids and Vitamin B, so it’s perfect here.

Chipotle peppers are jalapenos that have been smoked. The ones that come in the can are perfect to use here. These spicy peppers are a good source of vitamin A and potassium. Hot peppers contain more vitamin C than any other vegetable and they are good at fighting off the common cold. Whenever I have a cold I eat lots of hot sauce. So, if you like spice, as I do, use a generous amount of chipotles here. The main component of hot peppers is capsicum. Capsicum actually works with your body and mind to make you feel happy. It’s also good for reducing swelling and can relieve arthritic joint pain. If you have high blood pressure, check with your doctor before eating too many hot peppers because they can actually raise the blood pressure in some people.

Scallions, as I tell you often, are one of my favorites. In Chinese medicine, the root of the scallion is a healing herb (Cong Bai). I always keep scallions on hand in my refrigerator so that I can whip up a batch of cold and flu fighting tea (scallion roots and ginger) the second anyone feels that scratchy throat coming on. It helps the body sweat out toxins. Scallions are antiviral and antibacterial; they are good for the common cold and general nasal congestion — just don’t eat too many if you have a fever.

Garlic is amazing in its antiviral and antibacterial capabilities. Garlic is actually a Chinese herb (Da Suan). It’s used to kill toxins and parasites and also to reduce swelling in the body. It’s what I call a great “A” herb: anesthetic, antibacterial, anti fungal, antioxidant, antiviral, etc….

cheeseburger soup

Cheeseburger Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: soup, dairy-free, paleo, whole30
Cuisine: recipe adapted from: The Spunky Coconut
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
This soup really tastes like a cheeseburger. But it's dairy-free. It's a magical recipe!
Ingredients
  • 1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1-1/2 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • sea salt
  • For the creamy sauce:
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth (or a combination of whatever broths you have on hand)
  • 1-1/2 cups raw cashews
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 chipotle chili from a can of chipotles in adobo sauce
  • 1 bunch of scallions, sliced
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a large heavy pot.
  2. Add the onions, garlic and beef. Season with salt.
  3. Cook, stirring and breaking up with a spoon until the meat is no longer pink.
  4. Meanwhile, in a blender, combine the broths, cashews, 1-tsp sea salt, tomato paste, nutritional yeast and chipotle chile.
  5. Puree until silky smooth.
  6. Pour the contents of the blender into the pot with the beef. Stir until combined and hot.
  7. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with scallions. Enjoy!

cheeseburger soup