The cookbook’s been out for a little over a month and has garnered some very awesome support and praise from everyone from fitness and nutrition leaders to everyday warriors just like you!
I’m so thankful for your support! You can still get some great deals on The Performance Paleo Cookbookif you shop around online a little. (The best prices online seem to be on Amazon and Target.com…wink wink.)
Toasty walnuts, lemon and herbs add flavor to this humble green
Chard is such a versatile leafy green, and it’s great served both raw and cooked. It’s particularly rich in vitamin A and lots of antioxidants. The warm walnut dressing wilts the chard just a bit when you pour it over the greens.
If you’re going to prep the salad ahead of time, warm the dressing back up before you add it to the chard. Can’t find chard? Spinach will work just fine!
In a medium skillet over low heat, combine the shallot, garlic, rosemary, avocado oil, salt and pepper. Cook and stir, about 3 minutes, until the shallots turn translucent and soften. Add the nuts, cooking and stirring on low heat until they’re evenly toasted and lightly browned. Turn off the heat.
In a large bowl, combine the Swiss chard with the lemon juice and vinegar. Pour the walnut mixture over the chard and toss well to combine.
TOTAL RECIPE MACRONUTRIENTS (IN GRAMS PER SERVING)
One of my favorite go-to lunches is this Paleo Lemon Tahini Tuna Salad. It sounds complicated, but it comes together in a flash with fresh chopped veggies, canned tuna, and a ridiculously simple (and flavorful) lemon tahini dressing. What’s tahini? It’s basically sesame seed butter!
If you’re in the market for a no cook Paleo meal, this is it. It’ll transport well and stay fresh until lunch if you’re preparing it the night before or the morning of. I buy tuna without additives and stick to higher quality albacore packed in water or its own juices. Try for BPA-free cans when you can find them.
Instead of tuna, try salmon! Both are good sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, and I you are adventurous enough to eat the type with bones, it’s another non-dairy way to get calcium. Use whatever chopped veggies or salad greens you like. In this photo, I used a mix of thinly sliced cabbage, carrots, cucumber, red onion and snap peas.
In a medium bowl, mix the tahini, lemon juice, and garlic powder. Whisk until well combined. The dressing will be on the thicker side. If it's really too thick, like a pasta, whisk in a bit of water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until it thins a bit.
Add the tuna to the dressing and mix gently until it's well coated. If needed, add sea salt and pepper to taste.
This Paleo Brussels Sprouts, Blueberry and Bacon Salad was inspired by a dish at our local grub establishment, and it’s full of awesome flavors: crisp Brussels, sweet blueberries, savory bacon and a tangy lemon tarragon dressing. Got your attention?
What’s even better is that this Paleo Brussels Sprouts, Blueberry and Bacon Salad is easy to scale up and bring to a party or potluck, and it’s pretty simple to make. If you can’t find dried blueberries without a bunch of added sugar, fresh will work just fine.
¼ cup (60 mL) light-tasting olive oil or avocado oil
Preheat the oven to 350F (177C) and line a baking sheet with foil. Lay the bacon strips on the foil. You may want to season the bacon by sprinkling it with a little garlic powder. Bake the bacon until it's crispy but not burned, around 15 to 20 minutes. Set it aside to cool, and chop it.
To prep the Brussels sprouts, peel off any damaged outer leaves. Using a sharp knife, carefully slice the sprouts thinly. I like to think about making 4 to 6 slices per sprout. The thinner the better. Place those in a large bowl.
Add in the blueberries and walnuts.
In a medium bowl, combine the lemon juice, garlic, tarragon, mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk to combine, then drizzle in the oil while whisking until it's evenly mixed. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss everything well to combine. Top with the bacon.
Use fresh blueberries instead of dried if you prefer. This recipe is Whole30-friendly if you use sugar free bacon and blueberries without added sugar.
I need to preface by saying that this is one spectacular little number. It could easily pose as a main for lunch or act as a superior side dish for a larger spread. The birth of this recipe began one day while strolling the farmers market. After spotting a bushel of Brussels sprouts at a vendor’s booth, and some beautiful heirloom beets at another, I decided to come up with a dish that would combine the two. Ironically, I thought of uniting one of my all-time faves, beets, with something I had (at that point) never EVER tried before, Brussels sprouts.
To put this dish over the edge, I knew it would be ideal to cook up some bacon in the oven first and then roast the beets, garlic and Brussels sprouts in the fat afterward. Two words: dynamite decision. After slow roasting, everything caramelizes together to make one huge mound of goodness. It creates an earthy and nutty sauce within itself. Every bite gives you a savory crunch that will appeal to your taste buds and leave you wanting more.
Arrange slices of bacon on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and bake for about 20 minutes in the oven until crispy. When done, remove with tongs and set aside on a plate to cool. Reserve the bacon fat for cooking the vegetables.
In a large roasting pan, add in the beets, Brussels sprouts and garlic. Drizzle with leftover bacon fat. Sprinkle with dried thyme, salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly using the tongs. Roast in the oven on the middle rack for about 45 minutes until everything has caramelized slightly.
In the meantime, toast pistachios in a small pan over medium heat on the stovetop. Transfer contents of the roasting pan to a large bowl and top with pistachios. Crumble the cooled bacon and add it to the veggies. Use tongs to toss it all together.
Brussels sprouts are an excellent source of vitamin K and C.
Pistachios are an excellent source of copper and vitamin B6. They are also a very good source of iron, manganese, phosphorus, vitamin B1 and B5 as well as a good source of magnesium.
Want to check out more of Paleo Takes 5 – Or Fewer? Go here and click on Look Inside.
Kohlrabi is definitely not a vegetable I’d ever had gumption to try. Its funky, globular shape and oddly placed leaves always looked so strange to me. Let’s just say, kohlrabi was never on the menu…until now. I picked up a bunch at the store a few days ago and decided it was high time I give kohlrabi a try.
Interestingly, the word kohlrabi is a mashup of German phraseology that translates roughly into “cabbage turnip.” The flavor tastes of mild cabbage or something like broccoli stem but without the sulfurous undertones. In terms of nutrition, it’s rich in Vitamin C and the healthy phytochemicals that other members of the Brassicafamily are renowned for.
I prepared this kohlrabi like a salad, but if you’ve got more time, you could certainly slice it thinner / smaller like a slaw. The simple apple ginger vinaigrette is a great complement to the kohlrabi’s crunch.
Ingredients for the Kohlrabi Salad with Apple Ginger Vinaigrette
For the Salad
1 lb (454 g) kohlrabi, tops removed, halved and sliced
1/4 lb (113 g) carrots, halved and sliced
1/4 lb (113 g) red apple (I like Pink Lady, about half an apple), sliced
1/4 cup packed (3 oz / 85 g) fresh parsley
2 large (1 oz / 28 g) green onions, white and light green parts, sliced
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
For the Dressing
1/4 lb (113 g) red apple (I like Pink Lady, about half an apple), chopped
1/2 inch (1.3 cm) piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 Tablespoons (30 mL) light-tasting olive oil or avocado oil
Directions for the Kohlrabi Salad with Apple Ginger Vinaigrette
Prepare the salad by mixing the salad ingredients together in a large bowl. Set aside.
Make the dressing by combining the apple, ginger, apple cider vinegar, salt and pepper in a high-powered blender or food processor. Run the blender until the mixture is broken down and starts to liquify, then with the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil.
Pour the dressing over the salad and mix thoroughly to combine.
Paleo, Primal and real food lifestyles are gaining in popularity by the day. While the benefits—such as fat loss and stable energy—are enough to convince most people to take the leap and leave their processed food-based diets behind, for others the transition can be pretty overwhelming. If you’re just starting out on your journey to Paleo, this post is dedicated to you.
These five recipes I’ve compiled from my archives can help you make the switch to a gluten- and dairy-free nutrition plan a LOT easier. And, if you don’t tell anyone what they’re about to eat is Paleo, they’ll probably never know!
Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast
Slow Cooker Mocha-Rubbed Pot Roast. What’s not to love already? You’re probably thinking, “Coffee? Pot roast? What?!” but rest assured that it’s not like downing a cup of joe. The coffee adds a subtle depth of flavor that the spices alone can’t achieve. The end result was fall-apart tender. If you have time, I highly recommend taking the liquid from the crock pot and reducing it down by boiling until it becomes thicker. It’s nice to drizzle on top, almost like a gravy. Of course, if you’re in a rush, you can skip that step. If you don’t have access to this awesome cold-brew coffee, and java will do. Whole30-friendly.
Simple Paleo Tortillas
Are Simple Paleo Tortillas really possible?! If you’re looking for a really easy Paleo version of a flour tortilla—or a French crepe—look no further. These are pretty much foolproof and are much more flexible than other Paleo tortillas I’ve tried before that mostly use coconut flour as a base. I had a huge bag of arrowroot powder to use up (a gluten-free flour alternative) so this fit the bill quite well. These Paleo tortillas hold up to folding or rolling and can be used in sweet or savory applications, and it’s easy to make a double or triple batch in advance and save them for upcoming meals. They’d also be perfect for making up some tasty lunches on the go, and I think they’d be super popular with kids (of all ages)! I tested these to see how well they’d freeze. I rolled the tortillas up, froze them, and they thawed flexible and easy to fold!
This Paleo Chick-fil-A is dedicated to my friend Ricky. Being from the south, he’s been rattling on about Chick-fil-A for SO long, I finally decided to make a Paleo version for him. It came out so tasty that I’m going to bring some to party this weekend for him to officially try. The secret’s in the pickle juice! It basically brines the chicken which makes it super moist and tender. The recipe easily doubles. Whole30-friendly.
Watermelon Mojito Salad
This Watermelon Mojito Salad recipe was inspired by a Southern California road trip I took with one of my best friends. There may have been some mojitos consumed. I decided to make a mojito-esque—but clearly non-alcoholic—dish that would capture the flavors of this iconic Cuban drink. Plus watermelon. I love watermelon. Whole30-friendly.
Cinnamon French Toast Panna Cotta
Cinnamon French Toast Panna Cotta is a riff on a traditional Italian panna cotta, but mine is dairy-free. Usually panna cotta is made from a combination of milk, cream, sugar and gelatin—creamy with a slightly firm texture. Of course, there’s no actual bread in my version, but I incorporated all my favorite French toast flavors: the butteriness from the ghee, richness from the egg yolks, warmth from cinnamon and of course a bit of sweet from maple syrup. A bit of crumbled crispy bacon on top gives a savory counterpoint to the sweetness. And of course, I used coconut milk to keep it dairy-free. Seriously delicious. Keep in mind that this panna cotta doesn’t set up like super-firm gelatin desserts. I serve it in small Mason jars for a few small, rich bites.
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What’s your favorite Paleo recipe to serve to non-Paleo eaters?
Steph’s note: Please give a super warm welcome to my guest blogger Candace, better known around the Web as the creative mind behind Beyoutifully Delicious. She’s incredibly sweet and wickedly innovative in the kitchen, and I know you’re going to love her Paleo recipes. In fact, look out for part two of this recipe (a Strawberry Chili Grilled Chicken) that’ll be posting next week! Without further adieu, take it away Candace!
Coleslaw was never really my thing. Anytime I had it, it was mushy, drippy and tasted like that Miracle Whip crap. Bleh!
The greatest thing about cooking is you can always make something your own and give it your personal signature. I love peanut dressing and Pad Thai but I have really given up the peanut madness since turning my food over to the “Paleo Way.” I think I was having issues with it anyhow.
I love the texture of Napa cabbage so I make this star of the show, complimented by grated beets which are perfect for sweeping out those pesky phytoestrogens, carrots and fresh pineapple. No canned fruit in syrup here! This combination makes the perfect second post-workout meal where I start tapering off my carbs, upping my fat along with another big hunk o’ protein. It’s satisfying without leaving me weighted down.
Please welcome Kristen, my guest blogger and a special friend of mine, to the blog. I’ve come to know Kristen through her Instagram, and her story of sickness to wellness so touched my heart that I knew I had to share it on the blog. (Click here to read it, then come right back!) Kristen’s passion for food is clear in her super awesome blog, Living Loving Paleo, and her recipes are simple, approachable and nourishing. Take it away, Kristen!
One thing I super, duper missed when I first changed my diet to a Paleo diet was definitely sauces and dressings, especially creamy ones. I honestly thought I’d never see them again. I drew a blank when it came to making my own, as I never had before. Honestly, making my own dressings intimidated me, and I figured it would be difficult and time consuming (neither of which I’m a fan of). Then, I discovered just how easy and fast it is to make your own, and I knew I could never go back!
My life was completely turned around by changing the food that I put on my plate, and for the first time in a really long time I was healthy. I was determined to make recipes for my own sauces and dressings that fit my new lifestyle, and that were completely delicious! I love a great salad, and to me, a salad is completely made by the dressing. I must say, the dressing that I created for this taco salad makes it extra special. Store bought dressings don’t even compare! I hope you all love it as much as my family did. Happy cooking!
Ingredients for Tasty Taco Salad
For the base of the salad, I used romaine lettuce, diced tomatoes & avocado. Feel free to use any veggies you like.
In a small bowl mix together the chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Set aside.
Melt the coconut oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Once the coconut oil has melted, add the onion and sauté until soft. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the meat and cook until no longer pink. Add the taco seasoning to the meat and mix well.
While the meat is cooking, make the simple dressing. Place the oil, egg, mustard powder, lemon juice, lime juice, garlic and salt in a tall container. (I use a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup). Place an immersion blender at the bottom and turn on. Once the mixture starts to blend together and become thick, move the immersion blender towards the top, until it is well blended. This should take less than a minute! Stir in the cilantro. [Steph’s note: No immersion blender? Place the egg, mustard powder, lemon juice, lime juice, garlic and salt into a blender and let these come to room temperature. Run the blender for about 30 seconds, then with the blender on medium speed, very slowly (in a thin stream) drizzle in the avocado oil until the mayo has thickened.]
I cannot get enough of the flavors in this Thai Salad with Cilantro Lime Dressing!
When I came back from Scotland, all I was craving was super fresh veggies and this salad fits the bill. It’s inspired by one I had at Tender Greens but now that I made my own version I can have it any time without driving to the restaurant—plus, it’s nicer on my wallet and Whole30-friendly. The key to making this super-special is to use the freshest veggies you can find; it makes a huge difference. All quantities are approximate, and if you don’t like an ingredient, certainly leave it out or substitute it for something else. Top it with your protein of choice—grilled steak, pan-fried lemon chicken or shrimp would all be outstanding—for a complete meal.
Ingredients for the Thai Salad
For the Salad
1 head red or green leaf lettuce, roughly chopped
1/2 cup green papaya, julienned (I use this peeler to make it happen)
Say hi to my guest blogger, Laura! I first stumbled upon Laura’s recipes via her Instagram account (@paleo_in_comparison) and quickly came to admire her creativity when it came to food and her genuine nature. She’s a wife, homeschool mom of two rambunctious boys, and the Paleo blogger behind Paleo In Comparison and a growing Facebook community of the same name. In November of 2011, after years of yo-yo dieting and eating disorders, she stumbled into the Paleo lifestyle. With a total weight loss of 60 pounds (27 kg), and a complete change in her physical and emotional health, she’s never looked back. Paleo gave her life and health back, and helped her form a healthy relationship with food (I can relate!). She’s passionate about sharing her story, and believes that clean eating and living are essential to lifelong health and wellness. I know you’ll love her approach to food and her sense of humor.
If you’re looking for a tasty salad for your holiday table, I think this is perfect and the thought of the hot, sweet dressing makes my mouth water! With no further adieu, here’s Laura and her Collard and Brussels Salad with Hot Sweet Bacon Dressing…
“But salads aren’t sexy.”
That’s what I said to my husband when I told him I was considering making a salad for this guest post.
Salads are often neglected in the Paleo / Primal community for the glitz and glory of a rare steak, “Paleo” cookies, and bacon-wrapped…well…anything! But there are a lot of benefits to eating salads.
First, while I don’t subscribe to a raw food only diet, there most certainly are huge benefits to consuming our fruits and vegetables raw whenever possible. It’s just science – cooking can destroy and break down some of the vital nutrients and fiber in our foods. Cooking is a process – albeit a harmless one – but eating foods raw is the closest to unprocessed that we can get. Salads are a great way to get a lot of different veggies into our diets in their purest form.
On the more practical side, raw foods like salads are super convenient and easy to take with us anywhere. Cold travels better than hot, and you don’t need a microwave or oven to reheat it.
Whenever someone wants “a light lunch,” they go for a salad, but I would argue that nothing will fill your belly faster than raw veggies! Because all of that fiber hasn’t been broken down in the cooking process, you’re going to feel fuller longer – just be sure to drink plenty of water to help your tum-tum digest all that fibrous goodness!
Salads? Not sexy? Boy, did I change my mind fast! Healthy is sexy. So, if A=B and B=C, then A=C. It’s Logic 101. Salads are healthy, healthy is sexy. Therefore, salads are sexy!
The result of my salad revelation was this chicken thigh salad inspired by the colors of the Holiday season. Don’t worry, I was a good Paleo / Primal cook, and threw a little bacon grease in there for good measure. I hope you enjoy this sexy salad as much as my family did!
Collard and Brussels Salad with Seasonal Fruit, Hot Sweet Bacon Dressing & Crispy Chicken Skin Crumbles
Ingredients For the Salad
8 cups raw collards, shredded or finely chopped
4 cups raw brussels, quartered
1-1/3 cups raw cranberries
1 large green pear, sliced (or two small)
4 chicken thighs, bone-in with skin on (if you have a hungry set, make double for 2 thighs per serving)
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Remove skins from raw chicken thighs. This should be very easy. You may need to use a small paring knife in some spots, but the skins should come off easily just by hand. Once removed, cut the square-like pieces of skin in half. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper – this will help absorb the grease as the skins bake, making them crispier. Place on the cookie sheet and bake until deep golden brown and crispy, approximately 15 minutes. When finished remove from the cookie sheet and allow to cool completely, uncovered.
Remove parchment paper from cookie sheet, use the grease from the skins to coat the bottom of the cookie sheet. Place chicken thighs onto cookie sheet and coat with remaining grease (if you don’t have enough grease, you can coat the thighs with a little fat of choice – duck fat or ghee is always great with chicken). Season simply with a little salt and pepper. Bake at 375°F (190°C) until internal temp reaches 160°F (80°C), approximately 20-30 minutes depending on how many you cook. Allow to cool. Remove meat from bones & shred with your fingers.
Melt bacon grease in a non-stick pan over medium-low heat. Add balsamic vinegar and crushed garlic. Reduce liquid until it starts to thicken and the fat and vinegar are incorporated. Stir mixture occasionally with a rubber or wooden spatula while cooking. Once it has thickened, remove from heat and pour into a separate bowl. Add remaining ingredients and whisk well. Keep in mind the dressing should be served warm. Refrigerate leftovers and simply reheat to serve. The fat in the dressing will cause the dressing to harden when cold, so don’t be alarmed. Reheating will bring it back to proper consistency.
Plating the Salad
On each full-sized dinner plate, make a base with 2 cups of raw collards and 1 cup of raw Brussels sprouts. Place 1/4 of the pear slices on greens. Top with meat from 1 chicken thigh (2 if you doubled the chicken). Top with 1/3 cup of cranberries and some crumbled crispy chicken skins. Serve dressing on the side, or simply drizzle over the salad before serving.
Change it Up
You can use any leftover white meat you have for this salad.
If you want to make it with leftover meat, and do not have the crispy chicken skins, simply replace them with crispy bacon crumbles.
You can also make a quick and cold sweet dressing with honey, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, Dijon, and a little salt and pepper.
Do you have any questions for Laura? Let her know in the comments below!
Simply put, I’m always trying to eat more veggies. They’re nutrient-dense and incredibly diverse in flavor and texture. I try to eat a balance between raw and cooked veggies every day for variety – and because raw veggies require almost no prep!
This salad is pretty simple to prepare and is a good one for taking to potlucks or parties because it’s hardy and stands up to a couple hours sitting out without getting soggy. To make prepping julienned veggies easier, I have a very inexpensive peeler like this one here.
Ingredients for Crunch Kale Salad
1 medium bunch of kale (lacinato / dino kale works very well here), sliced thin
I’ve just returned from a week-long trip to London and Paris, hence how quiet I’ve been on the site here. If you’ve left a comment or sent an email, it will take a bit longer than usual but rest assured I’ll get back to you. I love traveling and discovering new foods, but I also really like getting back to my kitchen so I can make my favorite recipes and think of new ones.
This simple marinated steak was great over a fresh garden salad – use any veggies you’d like – served with some guacamole on the side. Or it’d make an awesome filling for my Simple Paleo Tortillas! If you don’t like beef, you could use chicken or pork. I bought some inexpensive steaks and cut them into strips for quick cooking. Alternatively, you could keep the meat whole, marinate it, grill it and then slice into strips once it’s cooked.
The inspiration from this recipe came from a hip, local eatery here in San Diego called Craft & Commerce. Their version of this salad comes with fried goat cheese – and would put me on the express train to Stomachacheville – but the rest is absolutely divine. I served mine with Easy Pan-Fried Lemon Chicken because it’s already got a bright, citrusy flavor.
Prep time: 15 min Cook time: 0 min Makes: 2 servings
Place the arugula down on the bottom of the plates.
Zest one orange and the grapefruit into a small bowl. Cut the both oranges and grapefruit into segments over the bowl to catch any juice. Squeeze the rest of the juice from the membranes!! Set the juice aside.
Top each salad with the segments from one orange, half a grapefruit, and ~1/4 cup of pickled jicama if desired.
In the bowl with the juice, add a pinch of salt and pepper and whisk in the olive oil to make a simple vinaigrette (you should have about 3 Tablespoons of juice, and if your fruit didn’t yield enough you could always add the juice of a lemon).
Pour the dressing over the salad and top with chicken or your protein of choice.
Want to knock people’s socks off at your next brunch? Serve this.
Want to make yourself feel extra special? Make this.
Want a dish that’ll make every part of your palate sing glorious hymns? This is the dish for you.
This recipe was inspired by a dish my friend Claudette ordered when we went to the closing night of The Linkery in San Diego. I took one look and was so impressed I went home and tried to replicate it just a couple days later. The frisee (a curly, slightly bitter vegetable related to endive) makes the perfect mop for the yolk and the lemon basil dressing.
*If the bacon is raw, get that cooking first. I like to bake my bacon but use whatever method you prefer. For baking bacon: line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment paper, and preheat the oven to 350F (175C). Bake for ~15-20 minutes or until it’s as crispy as you’d like. Remove from oven and set aside.
Meanwhile, prepare the dressing using the hot, melted bacon fat that collects in the baking sheet. You can also use olive oil if your bacon is precooked and there’s no melted fat.
Arrange the frisee on a plate. Drizzle the dressing over the frisee.
In a skillet over medium-high heat, melt bacon fat or another fat of choice until it’s shimmering. Fry the eggs until the yolks are as firm as you’d like. I went for sunnyside up with a runny yolk because I wanted yummy yolk all over the salad.
Place the eggs on top and the bacon on the side. Try not to eat it so fast that you don’t enjoy it because it’s goooooooood!
Tangy lemon and fresh basil mingle together with bacon fat to make a surprisingly light dressing perfect for Frisee Salad with Eggs and Bacon or any other application. No bacon fat? Substitute olive oil instead.
Makes: 1/4 cup
Ingredients for Lemon Basil Vinaigrette
Juice + zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon brown mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
3 Tablespoons melted bacon fat (or olive oil)
2 Tablespoons basil, chopped or cut as chiffonade
Directions for Lemon Basil Vinaigrette
Place the lemon juice and zest, brown mustard, salt and pepper in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk to combine.
Slowly drizzle in the melted bacon fat (or olive oil) while continuously mixing to emulsify the fat.