Beef · Lamb · Recipes · Whole30

FFF: Becca’s Winter Goulash

If you saw my Instagram post about paleo nachos a few weeks ago, you may have already realized what’s happening here, but if not – let me explain. A while back, my friend Sara mentioned that nachos were what she missed most during Whole30, so I did what I could to paleo-fy them for her. Guys, they were SO good. It was like getting struck by lightning, I had to do this for all the friends I’d talked into trying Whole30 (and some of the friends who still don’t think they could do it).

Enter FFF: Friend’s Favorite Foods – a new bekaneggs blog series in which I will attempt to Whole30-fy or at least paleo my friends’ favorite foods. Hopefully these recipes work out because I now have a long list of people waiting for a Whole30 version of their favorite dishes! (SWYPO dishes, problematic foods, and anything that is clearly not in the spirit of Whole30 will not be happening so if you’re looking for pizza, you’re in the wrong place). But I digress, let’s get to Rebecca’s dish.

***

My dad… isn’t much of a cook, to say the least – but the man knows his way around a meat stew of any variety. His super spicy goulash, an obsession that started when I dated a Hungarian boy in high school, is one of my favorite family food memories from the teenage years. I was thrilled when my friend Becca said goulash was one of her must-haves – and her reaction when I said I could make it Whole30 made me want to put it together asap.

Continue reading “FFF: Becca’s Winter Goulash”

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Beef · Recipes · Whole30

Laziest Whole30 Dinner: Two Ways

I’ve been pretty candid about my new job and unintentionally way too long hiatus from whole30- and Paleo writing (just the writing part, not the eating part), but I’ve got lots of recipes to share and am trying to stockpile some posts for you guys!

With that new and exciting job, I’ve got some great but also unconventional work hours which means that I am absolutely starving when I get home and Nick’s been waiting for me for nearly two hours. The point is, we’re freaking hungry and I just need to eat something nutritious and filling as soon as humanly possible so I can get on to the relaxing and the doggo snuggling!

How I feel when I get home from work at 8pm and we still need to make dinner

In case you missed it: meet our newest family member – Franklin! We adopted him from the Tillamook Animal Shelter at the beginning of November. Thank you so much to BAPBR for your courtesy listings for pitbulls at other shelters and for helping us with the adoption process! We are ecstatic with our big baby and kind of excited to eventually share some of his paleo-ish life too!

I digress. This dish – if you can even call it that – can go in either of two directions, depending on who is cooking that night and if Nick will submit to eating Thai curry again. The ingredients are pretty much the same either way with one or two swaps.

The basic concept is as follows: ground meat of your choosing, onion, steamed kabocha squash or pumpkin purΓ©e, bok choy or spinach (optional), and Thai red curry paste or Tessemae’s creamy ranch dressing.

For this recipe, you will need:
One large pan, nonstick recommended
Spatula
Cutting board
Sharp knife
Microwave safe bowl (for version B)
Plastic wrap (for version B)

Ingredients for Version A –
1 lb ground meat (pork, beef, or dark meat chicken)
One large onion, chopped
One can pumpkin purΓ©e
Baby bok choy or spinach (optional)
2 tsp avocado oil or ghee
Tessemae’s creamy ranch dressing
Fresh or freeze-dried scallions (optional)

Ingredients for Version B –
1 lb ground meat (pork, beef, or dark meat chicken)
One large onion, chopped
One bag frozen kabocha squash (Trader Joe’s)
Baby bok choy or spinach (optional)
2 tsp avocado oil or ghee
Thai red curry paste (this one is my favorite)
Garlic powder (optional)
Fresh or freeze-dried scallions (optional)

Regardless of which direction you choose to go in, start by heating avocado oil or ghee in a large pan over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add your chopped onion and cook, mixing occasionally, for 5-7 minutes or until some caramelization begins to form (you can of course go for much longer, but the idea is we’re hungry and impatient). Version B also works great with my meal prep pulled pork!

Version A

Continue reading “Laziest Whole30 Dinner: Two Ways”

CrockPot · Pork · Recipes · Whole30

Meal Prep: Pulled Pork

Over the years I’ve come across countless recipes for pulled pork, and even the paleo ones tend to add copious amounts of sugar in one way or another for reasons I have yet to understand. This is not one of those recipes.

Low maintenance, quick to prep, fall apart pork that’ll last you a full week of meals and suit any cuisine craving that might creep up on you? That sounds like my kind of Sunday. #mealprep

Note: I did actually eat this for the entire week while Nick was on a business trip. It lasted me 10 meals.

Equipment:
5-6qt crockpot
Carving fork (optional, but super helpful)
Tongs and/or slotted spoon
Large heat-safe bowl

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Poultry · Recipes · Whole30

Beka’s Buffalo Chicken

Buffalo chicken has been a favorite food item of mine since the early days of high school (that’s like 15 years!) Buffalo chicken pizza, buffalo chicken wrap, buffalo chicken… pretty much anything. Before Nick and I made the switch to Whole30 as a long-term option, one of my most common cheat day cravings was the buffalo chicken cheesesteak from Jersey Mike’s – a small but mass-produced taste of the east coast. I have missed buffalo chicken a lot, but I definitely do not miss how that massive sandwich made me feel – wheat, soy, dairy, sugar… all the inflammatory things! So I set out to recreate my own Whole30 and paleo version at home …it was way easier than I expected.

This is such a fast and seriously simple recipe that I almost feel a little silly writing it, but it only requires a few ingredients and you guys kept asking, so here it is. You’ll need chicken, tomato, hot sauce, ranch, and onions if you like ’em. That’s it. The hardest part is just finding a buffalo sauce that is actually Whole30. Tessemae’s makes a wonderful sauce in both hot and mild varieties, but my local Whole Foods has stopped carrying that item. I’m still on the hunt for local alternatives, supposedly Target is a good option, but you can also order from Tessemae’s online!Β While the brand is Whole30 approved, not all of their products are compliant. Be sure to check the ingredients for every item!

You can use any cut of chicken you like, but my two favorites for this recipe are “party” wings (drumettes and flats) and good ol’ boneless, skinless breasts. For wings, follow my DIY Default Wings recipe, toss the wings in the hot sauce, and drizzle with ranch.

For breasts, use this recipe:

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Health · Information · Whole30

What I Eat in a Week: Food Freedom

If you didn’t know, in addition to BekaNEggs (that’s the page you’re reading right now), I also run/write a makeup + beauty blog called Makeup Nerdery. That means, in addition to my seemingly endless consumption of food and fitness content, I also spend a lot of time reading about and watching stuff relating to makeup, beauty, skincare, etc. Lately I have seen a lot of YouTubers making these “what I eat in a week” videos and while they are fun to watch, and I’m not here to judge anyone else’s eating habits (unless you are my friend in real life), they are made more to satisfy our nosiness and curiosity than to actually provide any useful information. I’m here to do the opposite, or at least… a little bit of both.

A few things before we get into this: I’m not sharing this to show off or brag, I’m not sharing this to make you feel bad about your own food choices, I am not counting macros at the moment (or calories ever), and I am a Chronic Meal Repeater. I’m sharing this to show you how I make food-that-makes-me-feel-good work for me and my life. If this gives you some motivation, some ideas, or even some comfort in how little time and effort I actually spend on my food, then this week of trying to photograph everything I put in my mouth was totally worth it. I am also not measuring or weighing anything right now, but will share amounts of food whenever I actually know.

One thing I will say is that I *do* plan out my meals for the entire week every weekend and then The Boyfriend and I do all of our grocery shopping on Sunday between our local farmer’s market and the grocery store it shares a parking lot with.

For the purposes of this post, “collagen drink” refers to my morning shaker bottle concoction which consists of 10-12oz Nespresso decaf coffee, 4oz New Barn unsweetened almond milk, 2 scoops of Vital Proteins collagen peptides, and lots of ice. In addition to all the items I list, I also try to drink three 32oz jars of water every day.

So, what I eat in a typical Food Freedom week. This week included the tail end of Whole30 reintroductions,Β Whole30 and Paleo meals, and some Paleo snacks. Let me know if you want to see a full Whole30 week!

Monday – 7 August

  • Brunch: Two eggs, 9 pieces sashimi, 2oz guacamole, GT’s Kombucha “Heart Beet”Β (whole30)

  • Snack: ChompsΒ stickΒ (whole30)
  • Dinner: Buffalo chicken and leftover parsnips (made with Tessemae’s Mild Buffalo and Creamy Ranch)Β (whole30)

Continue reading “What I Eat in a Week: Food Freedom”

Kid-Friendly · Recipes · Soup · Vegetarian · Whole30

Ultra-Faux Pho

This is… this is not even fake pho. This is a supremely lazy/fast approach to a slightly-influenced-by-Vietnamese-Pho dinner, but one that always goes off without a hitch in my house and can pretty much be done with any veg and meat you have. So here it is, my ultra-faux pho.

Your ingredients list can really go any which way you like, but here are the basics for 2-3 servings:

1 quart chicken, beef, or mushroom broth (or half and half meat/veg)
1 lb meat (meatballs, sausage, shredded chicken, etc)
1 vegetable that you can make noodles out of (zucchini, sweet potato)
1-2 handfuls green leafy vegetables (baby bok choy, spinach, etc)
1-2 handfuls chopped mushrooms (optional)
4-6 eggs
Togarashi, to taste

Using a spiralizer, julienne peeler, or just a regular vegetable peeler, turns your noodling vegetable into said noodles. You can also buy pre-noodled zucchini or sweet potato – they are increasingly available in grocery stores (Trader Joe’s sells sweet potato ribbons and they are fantastic).

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Information · Whole30

Fridge & Pantry Essentials: Whole30

In a previous post I mentioned that The Boyfriend and I (and 11 of our friends and relatives that I annoyed into submission) would be doing a Whole30 challenge this month. This is my second time doing it, and I had great results in terms of health and how I felt after the first one we did in November 2015 (pro-tip: would not recommend doing it over a major holiday).

This past week, after all the holiday festivities, I Whole30-fied our entire fridge and pantry – ditched all the things that make us sick and we should avoid longterm (anything with soy, really) and hid all the other indulgent stuff that wasn’t going to expire for a while (mostly just the hot fudge and the balsamic glaze). With so many of our friends (and my mom!) doing Whole30 for the first time, I was reminded just how much work went into the “spices and condiments” category of finding approved foods. Even for the basics, like salad dressing, the compliant options available to us are often limited at best. Five years into the slow carb game and on the heels of my second Whole30 and a new paleo life, here are the spice blends, condiments, and other pantry staples I rely on to get meals done.Β Each item will be labeled for Paleo, Whole30, and/or Slow Carb.

Let me know in the comments if you guys like this “Essentials” series, I’ve got plenty more ideas!

Teeny Tiny Spice Company Tandoori Masalapaleo, whole30, slow carb – Sadly my beloved British Curry is not Whole30 compliant due to some added maple sugar (ok for paleo), but the brand’s Tandoori Masala is an excellent consolation prize. I love to use it in my Indian style chicken curries with onions, garlic, and broccoli. It also makes a great marinade mixed with coconut milk for slow cooked chicken, crispy chicken thighs*, and lamb too.

* this recipe calls for both the British Curry and Tandoori Masala blends, you can definitely just use the Tandoori Masala! I would probably add some turmeric for good measure.

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Health · Information · Recipes · Whole30

Whole30 + Ice Cubes

If you checked out my most recent recipe or follow me on Instagram, you may have picked up on some recent little grumblings about Whole30. It’s often referred to as the Whole30 challenge, but it’s essentially a 30 day elimination diet that sounds a lot like paleo on steroids… or I guess, paleo on definitely no steroids whatsoever. The Boyfriend and I completed a round of Whole30 in November of 2015 and despite the struggle of sticking to the rules through Thanksgiving and managing the lack of local/seasonal produce in the winter, it was an overwhelmingly positive experience. We learned so much about our bodies – well, my body mostly – like that I am super sensitive to soy, and for the sake of my skin as well as any living creature in my general vicinity, I should probably not consume dairy, even on slow carb’s allotted cheat days.

We’re coming up on two years since our first Whole30 and I have been itching for another one. If we could make it through a round in November, then summer – with farmers’ markets and damn near everything in bloom – should be a piece of cake (except actually not cake at all because it’s definitely not Whole30 approved).

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Poultry · Recipes · Whole30

Thai Red Curry Chicken

I don’t know what it is about Thai food, but I crave it constantly. Much to my dismay, rice noodles do not fit anywhere into our slow carb or Whole30 lives, so I’ve had to learn to cook some of the good stuff all on my own. This Thai Red Curry chicken is so easy and quick, this might be a new weekly event in our house!

I get our Thai Red Curry paste from a local brand called Thai & True, but any brand is fine as long as it is slow carb/paleo/Whole30 compliant (whichever one you need it to be). I also use a wok-style oil that’s infused with lemongrass and ginger, but this is just something I have on hand and like to use, any cooking fat will do just fine for this recipe! In general, I highly recommend avocado oil and beef tallow for most cooking needs (though beef tallow may not be the best choice for this particular recipe).

Equipment: Β 
Large non-stick pan
Spatula or stirring utensil

Ingredients:Β 
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 small onion, finely chopped
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
4 tbsp Thai Red Curry paste
1 13oz can coconut milk
1-2 tbsp fresh Thai basil, stemmed
1-2 tbsp fresh scallions, thinly sliced
1-2 tbsp cooking oil
1/2 tsp coriander
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste

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Kid-Friendly · Party Food · Poultry · Recipes · Whole30

Default Wings: DIY

Wings are such a quick, easy, and often very cheap way to make everyone happy. They’re frequently labeled at the butcher counter as “party wings” and are already split up into the flat wing and the drumette, which is perfect for me because The Boyfriend prefers the drums and I want *all* the flats. For a little while I was preparing a new recipe each time we wanted wings, until I finally figured out my “go to” or The Default. If you love wings, but you and your meal buddy want different flavors, this is the recipe for you. The Default delivers perfectly crispy wings with a delicious dry rub every time, ready to be eaten as is or drenched in your sauce of choice.

Equipment:
Oven
Large glass pan
Tongs

Ingredients:
1-2 lbs “party wings”
2 tbsp cooking oil or animal fat of choice
1-2 tbsp granulated garlic
2-3 tsp Diamond Crystal salt

Preheat oven to 350*F. Grease one or two glass pans with your fat of choice, using a silicone brush or other preferred utensil to coat the whole bottom of the pan and up the sides. (You may need two pans if you are making more than one pound of wings, if they are too close together, it can overcrowd the pan and they won’t cook as well or as evenly).

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