Mmmm biscuits!

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Things have been crazy busy lately. It seems like every time I’m about to post this, something comes up and post pones it yet again. I’m currently in the middle of a hair cut and color… So since I can’t move from the chair and don’t have my work in front of me… These next 25 minutes are dedicated to Paleo!

Growing up, one of my all time favorite breakfasts was biscuits and gravy. I’m convinced my mom makes them better than anyone! Lately, I’ve been craving biscuits and any kind of bread really. So last week I took an entire day to figure this recipe out.

After a couple of misfires and a dozen taste tests from friends, we finally have a winner! The texture is pretty on point, and with a little grass fed butter (and honey for you sweet lovers) you will hardly miss all that bad stuff!

Easy Paleo Biscuits

Ingredients:
4 egg whites, 1 egg
3/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
2 TBS coconut oil (don’t melt it)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda

Directions:
-First, preheat the oven to 400.
-Then, crack open your egg whites and egg and whisk until nice and fluffy.
-Add 1/4 cup almond flour to your egg mixture and whisk again. Set aside.
-Combine all other dry ingredients in a large bowl and stir well
-Add the coconut oil in solid form to your dry ingredients. Using a fork, work the oil into the mixture. You are trying to get a nice crumbly look to the mixture.
-Once you get that look, stick it in the freezer for at least ten minutes. If you have the time, give it an extra ten.
-Take the bowl out of the freezer and add the egg mixture to the dough. Stir well!
-Fork out about 2-3 TBS of the dough onto the cookie sheet and mold the biscuit into the shape you want.
-Bake for 15-20 minutes, then add your (optional) butter and honey and enjoy!!

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*Sidenote, if you haven’t tried coconut sugar yet, go get it! It tastes exactly like brown sugar and also is delicious on these biscuits! YUM!!

Salt and Vinegar Kale Chips

Long time, no talk. Since my last post, I’ve been to LA and Atlanta.  Basically my home in Texas has been more of a home base where I do my laundry and hibernate for a day until I have to take off on another flight. Courtney is probably going to put a post on here next looking for a new roommate because she probably thinks I’ve moved. Well that’s not the case, work has just been out of control BUSY.

LA was alright, the highlight was that I got a CrossFit at a few different boxes.  My favorite was Walnut CrossFit in Walnut, CA.  Shout out to the crew there, you guys have a great thing going on at that box!

My Atlanta trip was automatically phenomenal because that’s where I’m from.  I benefitted from 2 home cooked meals from Memaw.  She did a great job preparing a paleo friendly menu.  I also got to go have lunch at the school where my cousin and aunt work.  It’s always nice to be able to put your arms around your family members.  My Aunt Lorrie and her family have been on their Paleo journey for a couple months now, so good to see her y’all.  She had a little baking field trip over at my grandparent’s house and I got there just in time to enjoy a little pumpkin almond something or another. Delicious.  I thought that was going to be the end of my family time during my trip to Georgia, but just as I’m walking to security at the airport, I ran into my Aunt Lisa.  Crazy how that happens! All in all, my Georgia trip was a success, even the work that I had to do while I was there.

I’ve finally had time to sit down and write up this Kale Chip recipe. It’s easy. It’s cheap. It’s crispy crunchy!

Ingredients

  • 1 Bunch of Kale
  • 1 TBSP coconut oil
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 1 TBSP Cider Vinegar
  • ½ tsp chili powder

Directions

Wash the Kale and pat dry with a paper towel.  Tear the kale leaves from the stalk in large chunks.  They shrink up really small when you bake them so keep that in mind.  In a bowl, combine all of the remaining ingredients and mix.  Add the kale leaves and toss to coat.  Place the kale on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake at 350° for about 20 minutes.  I mixed mine around about half way through the baking time. Serve immediately.  Unfortunately, these don’t stay fresh for very long so go ahead and eat them all! I did!

Nutrition: 1 serving = ¼ of the recipe

Calories: 43

Protein: 1.7 grams

Fat: 5.25 grams

Carbohydrate: 5 grams

Layered Chocolate Pie

 

(Mmmm…)

I am going to start this by saying that the picture does NOT do it justice. Seriously, you can’t eat the picture… Anyways, one of my all time favorite desserts is Chocolate Silk Pie that comes from a BOX, KID YOU NOT. Jello, I don’t know what you put in that box, but it is hands down delicious chocolate goodness that I have been missing for a minute. Unfortunately for you, I have found my Paleo replacement.

As always, Lindsay was my guinea pig for this one. I’m not sure if it’s a good thing that she always has to try out my desserts. She might secretly hate me for making her scarf down one chocolately sweet treat after another… In fact, I think she’s partly thankful that she is out of town more than half the time now so she can go on a dessert detox. Ha, who am I kidding?! She loves chocolate as much as I do. I mean, who would be mad about someone feeding you chocolate?! She makes me take fish oil and eat all my vegetables… So I ask you, who is the better roommate here? JUST JOKING! Thanks to her, these Paleo treats are possible. Otherwise, I would be a good ten pounds more out of shape, not doing crossfit, not eating healthy and still never taking vitamins. Life just wouldn’t be as sweet.

Speaking of sweet, if you like chocolate… you should enjoy this. It definitely hit the spot for me the day after our Grapevine Gauntlet. My body still hurts by the way! Wish we could do it all again this weekend… Love our Grapevine Crossfit people!! Until then, give this a go and let me know what you think!

Layered Chocolate Pie

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 2 Tbs melted Coconut Oil
  • 1 cup Almond Flour
  • 2 Tbs Cocoa Powder

Nut Butter Layer:

  • 6 Nut Butter Cups (if you haven’t already made these, go to my previous post and make them. Seriously, you NEED to gobble these up and then put the rest in this pie)

Filling:

  • 2 ripe avocados
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Mix all crust ingredients into your glass pie pan and spread with your fork until evenly distributed.
  • Place all six nut butter cups on top of your crust evenly and put into the oven for 5-10 minutes. Once the nut butter cups have melted, spread around the crust with your fork.
  • Set the crust aside.
  • Throw all filling ingredients into a food processor or blender and blend until it is creamy smooth.
  • Scoop the filling on top of the crust and place imediately into the freezer.
  • Leave it in the freezer for at least an hour, then cut a nice big slice to eat… or leave the slice in the fridge and take your fork directly to the pie plate… Yum.

Whipped Topping (Optional)

Ingredients

  • 1 can coconut milk (refridgerate first)
  • 2 Tbs vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup honey

Directions

  • Scoop out the coconut milk into a bowl
  • Add honey and vanilla (do this to taste, any combination will work)
  • Whisk together and store in the fridge until you are ready to serve!

(Lindsay and I after the Gauntlet… first official roommate picture, so had to share!)

Nut Butter Cups

Being born on Halloween automatically means that I love my sweets! It also means that this time of year is going to be a real challenge for me with tons of delicious candy and treats taking up two of Kroger’s aisles. Reese’s peanut butter cups are by far one of my favorites, especially when they turn them into pumpkins! Seeing these turn up at the store this past week got me thinking… And I decided I needed something to replace my beloved Reese’s.

With the help of Lindsay’s delicious chocolate nut butter, I created a simple and very tasty solution! These are so good, in fact, that the roommate and I devoured about four each at midnight when she flew in late from DC! The most important step is the nut butter. My favorite is with cashews, but the almond version is incredible as well… Try these out, you will NOT regret it!

Lindsay’s Nut Butter

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of any kind of roasted nuts or combination of nuts (almond, cashew, macadamia…)
  • 3 to 4 TBSP of Enjoy life Chocolate chips
  • 1 TBSP Coconut Oil
  • ½ tsp of salt (if you use this nut butter for nut butter cups, add a little extra salt here.  It makes that perfect salty/sweet taste you need for the nut butter cups)

Directions

Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth!

Nut Butter Cups

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Enjoy Life Chocolate Chunks (you can also use baker’s chocolate)
  • 1 cup Nut Butter
  • 2 Tbs Coconut Oil or any Non-stick spray

Directions

  • First, you need to find the right pan to make these. I found mine at Kroger and it is perfect for the fast approaching holiday! Just pick something that will produce a cup that is about an inch to 2 inches in depth. Depending on what you choose you may need a little more or less chocolate!
  • Once you have the pan, coat it with Coconut Oil or a non-stick spray.
  • Place one cup of chocolate chunks into a microwavable container and melt for 1 1/2-2 minutes then stir until smooth.
  • Spoon about 1 Tbs chocolate into each cookie cut out, once all the chocolate is in, spread it out along the bottom and up the sides.
  • Place one cup of nut butter into a microwavable container and heat about 45 seconds. (if you just made the nut butter, you will not need to heat it). This step just helps it spread evenly.
  • Spoon about a Tbs into each cup and spread evenly ontop of the chocolate.
  • Heat the rest of the chocolate the same way as before and spoon on top of each cup!
  • Place the tray of cups into the freezer and let chill until it is hard to the touch!
  • Use a knife to pry them out, then try not to eat them all at once like we did… oops!

(This is the pan I used for these bad boys!)

Let’s Talk About Kale

I think it’s time for another “info” post.  On my trip to New Orleans, I found myself with a few hours to kill before my flight home and I decided that I should spend that time wandering around Whole Foods.  It’s interesting traveling around and seeing how markets across the country vary in produce and food selection.  What stood out to me in this Whole Foods was the particularly large amount of prepared good ole New Orleans soul food.  This includes gumbo, red beans and rice, fried catfish, and jambalaya.  While I did not try any of these (though I’m sure they are all very delicious), there was something new that I spotted that I found worth buying and trying.  I grabbed a bag of Chili Lime Kale Chips by Kaia Foods (soon to be called Kaya, they are undergoing a name change).  With my purchase in hand, I strolled over to the café area to relax and give these chips a try.  On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d give these guys an 8. Deductions for this product come from the size of the bag (wayyyyyy too small!)  and another deduction for price (eating these daily could eat a hole in your wallet!).  As far as taste, they were surprisingly right on the money.  They satisfied my crunch craving and packed the right punch of the three S’s,  salty, sour, and spicy.

Almost everyone has heard that kale is a “superfood”, but how many can actually name the “superfood” components of this leafy green? I did a little research via Google Scholar and came up with the following:

Let’s start with the easy stuff, the nutrition facts.  Steven Laifer lays out the nutrition data in his article, “Kale: Powerful Cancer Protection and Healthy Eye and Heart Benefits”.  One serving is considered 1 cup, or about 67 grams.

Calories: 33

Protein: 2 grams

Fat: 0.5 grams

Carbohydrate: 7 grams

Calcium: 91 mg (9% daily value)

Potassium: 299 mg (9% daily value)

Lutein & zeaxanthin: 26.5 mg

Vitamin A: 10,302 IU (206% daily value)

Vitamin C: 81 mg (134% daily value)

Vitamin K: 547 mg (684% daily value)

Vitamin B6: 0.2 mg (9% daily value)

Manganese: 0.5 mg (26% daily value)

 

Kale is in the same family as brussel sprouts, cabbage, and collards.  These plants are known for their health promoting phytonutrient content.

The high vitamin C content in kale makes it a potent antioxidant in the body, which helps prevent damage to cells by eliminating free radicals from the body. Removing free radicals is beneficial in that free radicals damage cells and result in an immune system inflammatory response in order to clean and heal the damaged cells (Embu 77). Long story short, vitamin C helps decrease inflammation, yay!

Vitamin E, also an antioxidant, protects cell membranes from damage by oxidative stress.  It is important to note that vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin and should be consumed with a little fat in order to reap the full benefits of this important antioxidant (Embu 77).

Vitamin A, in the form of Beta Carotene, is another nutrient found in abundance in kale.  Beta Carotene is the carotenoid family and is associated with a lower risk for multiple types of cancers (Embu 77).

Lastly, kale is low in the antinutrients,  Phytate, Oxalate, and Tannins (Embu 77).  I think I’ll do my next post on these antinutrients because they are substances that I would like to explore.

Remember how I said the down side of the kale chips I tried were amount of kale chips per package and high price? Well let’s fix this by making our own, it’s very easy! I tried it out yesterday – so new recipe post to follow! Eat kale, be healthy!

 

References:

Embu, P.K.,  J.U. Anyka. “Vitamin and Antinutrient Composition of Kale (Brassica oleracea) Grown in

Delta State, Nigeria. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition. Volume 10 (1): 76-79, 2011.

Laifer, Stephen. “Kale: Powerful Cancer Protection and Healthy Eye and Heart Benefits”. Life Extension.

July 2008. Pages 89-91. Available at <http://www.encognitive.com/files/KALE_0.pdf&gt;.

Simple Grilled Chicken & Steak Salad

Have no fear my friends, Paleo doesn’t always have to be complicated. The simpler the better actually! Here are few things to remember when building the perfect salad:

  • Lots of veggies
  • Healthy Fats
  • Protein…Protein…Protein…& more Protein

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Thursday nights are usually pretty hectic for me and my man so cooking dinner is not an option. If I don’t have left overs to heat up, or meat pre thawed then I’ll call a local restaurant and order some kind of grilled meat to go to save me some time.

INGREDIENTS:

*Measurements are up to you, I made mine pretty large for some serious staying power for my busy night* Notice in the bold – my key ingredients to building a perfect paleo salad**

  • Grilled Chicken & Steak – Protein
  • Grilled/sautéed Onions -Veggie
  • Lettuce of your choice – Veggie
  • Avocado – I used a whole Avocado to help me feel full for the rest of the night – Healthy Fat

DRESSING:

I did not pre mix this dressing since I was in a hurry. It was just as tasty drizzled all over the top.

  • Salt & Pepper
  • Garlic Powder
  • Cilantro
  • Olive Oil – Healthy Fat
  • Lemon

When creating food I love implementing different colors. In my mind a colorful plate means it’s jam packed with beautiful fruits or veggies which equals super nutritious. Unfortunately I didn’t have a tomato on hand otherwise that bright red beauty would’ve been the cherry….uuhh, err…or the tomato on top?

C’mon people get creative with your salads, what are some of your favorite toppings?

  • I love adding cilantro to pretty much everything I cook, but there is something about that cilantro that makes salads taste fresher than ever!

xoxo Becky :)

Coconut Crusted Eggplant Slices

Today, I’m posting from my hotel in New Orleans.  I flew into town this morning and fly back to Dallas tomorrow night.  I landed fairly early this morning so I pretty much had the whole day here to see what sort of trouble I could get into.  After checking into my hotel, I headed to Café Du Monde to enjoy a fresh cup of coffee.  No beignets for this girl, although it was quite a temptation.  After my afternoon coffee, I headed to Barnes and Noble where I picked a few paleo books and cookbooks off of the shelves and sat myself down in a very comfy chair.  After about an hour of reading, I felt a nap coming on and I completely gave in and passed out.  Yes, right in the middle of Barnes and Noble, with a lap full of books, I passed out.  We’re not talking a short cat nap here, I’m talking an hour long siesta! Who does that?! Apparently me! After my nap I read a little while longer and then set out to Crossfit New Orleans to get my WOD on.

As far as this recipe goes, it was a great little side dish for the chicken meatballs and zucchini “pasta” that I posted last time.  There is something about coconut flour that I just love, and I have no issues eating it right out of the bag. It’s yummy!

Ingredients

  • 1 Eggplant
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 TBSP water
  • 1 TBSP coconut oil plus about  1 tsp to grease the baking sheet
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp of Italian seasoning
  • ½ tsp salt

Directions

Pre-heat the oven to 425°. Slice the eggplant into thin strips/slices.  In a bowl, whisk the eggs, water, and 1 TBSP coconut oil.  On a plate, mix together the coconut flour, Italian seasoning, and salt.  Grease a baking sheet with the remaining teaspoon of coconut oil.  Dip the eggplant slices in the egg mixture, dredge in the coconut flour, then dip again in the egg and place on a baking sheet.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the eggplant turns a nice golden color.  Makes about 4 servings

Nutrition : Serving size is ¼ of the eggplant slices

Calories: 177

Protein: 8 grams

Fat: 5.2 grams

Carbohydrate: 19 grams