Chocolate Strawberry Pie (AIP, Paleo)

Chocolate Strawberry Pie (AIP/Paleo)

Its spring again at last! Most years I feel like winter drags on and the start of spring feels like it will never arrive. However, this year winter flew by as I adjusted to life as a mom and recovered from pregnancy and birth. It feels like Christmas has just morphed right into Easter! Nevertheless, I am thrilled for warm weather and even more thrilled for spring and summer fruits and veggies. One of the ways I always like to welcome spring is to come up with a new Strawberry recipe, since Strawberries are one of the first fruits of the season. In past years I have made jam, mini shortcakes and cookies so this year I decided to make a pie!

A long time ago I remember watching a movie, I can’t remember what it was called now, in which a woman makes a strawberry chocolate pie. I remember wanting so badly to bake such an amazing pie myself. I made a conventional one once in my pre-paleo days and it did not disappoint. So, as I pondered what strawberry recipe to make this year that memory came to me and I knew just what I had to do!

Cocoa is one of my successful reintroductions so I made this with chocolate but it can be easily made with carob and it will be just as tasty of a treat and will be totally AIP compliant.

Chocolate Strawberry Pie (AIP/Paleo)

Chocolate Strawberry Pie (AIP/Paleo)

Ingredients: 

Crust:

1 Cup Tigernut Flour

6 TBS Coconut Oil, melted

4 TBS cocoa powder/carob powder for AIP

1 pint strawberries, trimmed and halved

Filling:

1 15oz can of full fat coconut milk

1/4 cup of maple syrup

2 TBS vanilla extract, alcohol free

1/2 cup of coconut manna, melted

1/2 cup of cocoa powder/carob powder for AIP

pinch of sea salt

1 TBS Gelatin

Directions: 

In a food processor, combine your tigernut flour, coconut oil, and cocoa or carob powder and pulse until well blended. Press the mixture into a 9 inch pie plate. Freeze for 30 minutes or until hard. Lay your strawberries cut side down, covering the pie crust and set aside. In your food processor, combine your coconut milk, maple syrup, vanilla extract, sea salt, melted coconut manna and cocoa or carob powder. Blend until fully mixed. While the food processor is running slowly sprinkle in your gelatin and allow it to blend for a few more seconds. Spoon your filling into the pie plate so that the strawberries are covered and the top is smooth. Refrigerate for about 2 hours or until it is set. Top with coconut cream, strawberries or grated chocolate. Store in the fridge. Enjoy!

AIP Convenience Snacks 2017 edition

AIP Convenience Snacks 2017 Edition

Over the years I have had two other posts on AIP Convenience snacks on this blog you can view them HERE and HERE. Both are still filled with wonderful valid options, but as more and more attention has been brought to the benefits of this lifestyle retailers have begun to catch on and there are now more and more AIP compliant items being added to the market. Nothing can or should replace cooking your own healthy food, especially when it comes to fruits and vegetables, but as we know life can be a bit crazy and sometimes having a few things on hand that don’t need to be cooked is a life saver. So, I’ve compiled another list with some new products to help you in your AIP Journey. I have also included a list of snacks that only include one reintroduction ingredient to help you expand your options as you experience successful reintroductions.

100% AIP Compliant Convenience Snacks

Yucan Crunch

Epic Maple Bacon Pork Cracklins

Epic Bacon Bites

 

 

 

 

 

 

La Croix

Paleo Angel Power Balls

Sliced Tiger Nuts

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Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides

 

Cassava Strips

Bone Broth from Paleo on the Go

Tortillas from Paleo on the Go

Jackson’s Honest Sweet Potato Chips

Artisana Coconut Butter Packs

 

Compliant with One Reintroduced Ingredient

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Epic Beef Liver Bites– Contains Black Pepper

Coconut Butter Cups – Contains Chocolate

Dandelion Dark Roast Herbal Coffee – contains ramon seeds

Epic Salt and Pepper Pork Rinds – contains black pepper

Cherry Pie Larabars – contains almonds

Hail Merry Caramel Sea Salt Macaroons– contains almonds

 

 

 

 

A Day On The Autoimmune Protocol + GIVEAWAY

A Day On the Autoimmune Protocol plus A Celebratory Giveaway

4 years ago I began this blog as a way to share my recipes and talk about some of the hippy dippy things I enjoyed doing like canning and gardening. Since then, I found the autoimmune protocol and this site has blossomed into a community that aims to support others who are working to heal and manage autoimmune disease through diet and lifestyle. I genuinely never could have imagined what this blog would come to mean to me and those it has helped.

Thinking back over the past four years has really highlighted for me how many things have changed in my day-to-day life. The way I eat, the foods I eat, my priorities, and my routines have all changed dramatically and the results have been fantastic. I know that a lot of you out there are either just beginning your journey or maybe you are just thinking about the idea of diet and lifestyle changes and it can all seem so overwhelming at the start. So, to celebrate my four year blog-iversary I decided to put together a little video showing you what a regular day in my life looks like almost 4 years after beginning the autoimmune protocol. My life is far from glamorous as is evident from the new-mom bags under my eyes, my postpartum tummy, my messy house and how ridiculous I look while exercising but when it comes down to it that is the point right? This is a lifestyle, not a quick fix or a magic pill. Life is messy but even when things aren’t picture perfect you can still work towards healing and creating a better life.

The video is fun and I hope you enjoyed it, but what is a celebration without gifts? So, to celebrate my 4 year blog-iversary and to show my appreciation for all of my wonderful readers I have teamed up with Paleo on the Go to give one lucky reader a $120 gift certificate to try out some of Paleo on the Go’s awesome AIP food. All of their food is delivered to your door fully cooked and frozen all you have to do is heat it up. Plus is is incredibly delicious and they have a huge AIP menu. 4 years on AIP has equaled a lot of cooking for me but it has been so nice to enjoy Paleo on the Go‘s food when I just need a break. So, be sure to enter below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Banana Spice Lactation Cookies (AIP/Paleo)

Banana Spice Lactation Cookies (AIP/Paleo)

Now, before you panic and think that I am going to turn this site into yet another mommy blog, let me assure you that I won’t. That being said, there is a definite lack of information out there for pregnant and breastfeeding women with autoimmune diseases and I would like to start to help fill in that gap.

Before I gave birth I was very nervous about being able to establish a good milk supply and breastfeed successfully. I educated myself as much as I could and set up the support that I knew I would need but I was still nervous. One of the things that I was concerned about was the fact that I would be unable to eat a lot of the traditional “supply boosting” foods that are commonly recommended by other moms and care providers. These types of food include grains, oatmeal, nuts and seeds. These foods are called galactagogues, because they have properties that help boost milk supply and quality. However, the more I researched the more I realized that most of these types of foods tend to help milk supply in one of three ways: they contain phytoestrogens or some other hormone impacting component, they have a high micronutrient density (iron, calcium, potassium… ), or they provide a good boost of energy. Obviously, the autoimmune protocol diet is a very nutrient dense diet so chances are that if you are eating AIP and you don’t have any anatomical issues going on like insufficient breast tissue, or a lip or tongue tie, then you probably already have a great foundation for building a healthy milk supply. Personally, I have had no issues with my supply. That being said, I want to put other mom’s minds at ease knowing that there are lots of great AIP friendly foods out there that can help support them while breastfeeding. Here is an incomplete list to get you started:

  • Dark leafy greens (kale, spinach, collards, mustard greens)
  • green papaya (this is the young unripe form of papaya, it can usually be found in Asian markets or international markets)
  • dates
  • red raspberry leaf
  • blackstrap molasses
  • turmeric
  • ginger
  • cinnamon
  • tigernuts
  • fennel leaf
  • fenugreek leaf
  • sweet potatoes
  • coconut oil
  • olive oil
  • garlic
  • nutritional yeast
  • water
  • coconut water
  • chicory
  • dandelion root
  • moringa leaf (don’t use if pregnant or trying to conceive)

Below I have made a yummy AIP friendly lactation cookie recipe that will be wonderful treat for yourself or a new mom friend who is in need of some breastfeeding support. The name of the game with these cookies was nutrient density, but they are pretty tasty too! great for enjoying with a cup of tea at 2am when your little one is going through a growth spurt… I may be speaking from experience there…

Banana Spice Lactation Cookies (AIP/Paleo)

Banana Spice Lactation Cookies (AIP/Paleo)

yields 1 dozen

Ingredients: 

1 cup of Tigernut Flour

¼ tsp of Sea Salt

¼ tsp of Baking Soda

2 TBS Collagen Powder

1 tsp Turmeric Powder

1 tsp Ground Ginger

¼ Cup of Nutritional Yeast

3 TBS Coconut Oil, melted

1 Medium Banana, Pureed

2 TBS Blackstrap Molasses

½ tsp Vanilla Extract

1/4 cup of raisins

1 TBS organic African Moringa Leaf Powder (optional)

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl combine all of your dry ingredients and blend. Add in your coconut oil, banana puree, molasses, and vanilla and mix well. Finally, stir in your raisins. spoon batter onto a lined cookie sheet in 1 TBS sized balls. Gently flatten with your fingers. Bake for 15 minutes. Allow them to cool, store in the refrigerator.

 

Balsamic Beef Heart Tacos (AIP/Paleo)

Balsamic Beef Heart Tacos (AIP/Paleo)

If you’ve followed the autoimmune protocol for long you know that there is an emphasis placed on eating offal and organ meat. According to Dr. Sarah Ballantyne “Organ meats are the most concentrated source of just about every nutrient, including important vitamins, minerals, healthy fats and essential amino acids.” I have struggled with incorporating organ meat throughout my time on the autoimmune protocol. I drink bone broth regularly, and I choked down liver in the form of pate for a while in my early days of healing, but as soon as I started feeling better organ meat got dropped out of my regular meal plan.

However, after pregnancy, birth, and now breastfeeding I am keenly aware that my body is a little on the depleted side and in need of lots of nutrient density. I’ve got mega new mom brain fog, my hormones are trying to balance out and my adrenals are naturally being taxed. So, I have turned back to organ meat with a renewed commitment to finding what works for me. In the past I have always focused my attention on liver because there are a lot of recipes out there and it seems to be the way most people eat organ meat. However, I have a really hard time with the taste and the texture. (Side Note: I did recently tried Epic’s liver bites and they are by far the least “livery” tasting way to I have tried yet) Instead, I decided to give beef heart a try. Up to this point my only experience with beef heart was in Paleo on the Go’s Shepherd’s pie and I was honestly shocked that it contained organ meat at all because I couldn’t taste anything out of the ordinary. Because heart is a muscle it has texture that is much more similar to a steak or any other type of muscle meat that we are more used to eating. I went to my local farm and sourced a high quality piece of beef heart and came home to figure out what to do with it. I will say that the prep work was a little more involved than it is with liver. I washed it off, snipped the residual strings (veins and arteries) and cut off most of the fat. (This video is a helpful guide). What is left is a very lean, nice looking cut of meat. I cooked it in the slow cooker, in the way I outlined below, to help with the texture but when It was done I was still a little too squeamish to just sit down and eat it in a big slice, so instead I decided to shred it, mix it with ground beef and eat it in tacos and it was delicious!

This recipe isn’t an exact science because it was a process, but in the end I enjoyed the result and it was a very palatable way to increase my organ meat consumption and help build back up my nutrient stores.

Balsamic Beef Heart Tacos (AIP/Paleo)

Balsamic Beef Heart Tacos (AIP/Paleo)

Ingredients: 

1 grass fed beef heart

1 tsp sea salt

2 cloves of garlic

1/2 tsp dried marjoram

1/2 tsp of dried oregano

1/2 cup of bone broth

1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar

1 lb grass fed ground beef

Your favorite AIP friendly tortillas (This is a great recipe or I like these store bought ones although they do contain a small amount of xanthan gum which makes them not 100% AIP friendly)

Optional Taco toppings: avocado, sauerkraut, AIP salsa, lettuce, cooked onions…

Directions: 

Prepare your beef heart by following the instructions here. Then, combine your salt, garlic, marjoram and oregano and rub it all over your beef heart. Place the heart in your slow cooker and add your bone broth and vinegar. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. In a small skillet, cook your ground beef, seasoning to taste with salt and garlic. Remove the heart from the slow cooker and either shred it with two forks or pulse it in the food processor. Combine your heart with your ground beef and use as the base for your delicious tacos!

 

Fool-Proof Plantain Pancakes (AIP/Paleo)

Fool-Proof AIP Pancakes (AIP/Paleo)

A while ago a friend of mine who is also an AIP blogger and a health coach sent a message asking for recommendations on fool-proof AIP pancake and waffle recipes. She had a client who had tried a number of recipes that resulted in falling apart pancakes without a good flavor or texture. A number of people responded with some great waffle recipes, but no one had recommendations on a truly fool-proof pancake recipe. If you have followed my blog for a while, you know that most of my recipes are born out of necessity so I got to work trying to figure out this issue. It has taken me a while, but I finally have a recipe that I am considering to be as close to fool-proof as we can get. The key to this recipe is to cook them over a very low heat while covered. This essentially bakes them rather than fries them which allows them to rise and stick together well. The key to the flavor is to use slightly sweeter ripe plantains rather  than green plantains. So, give it a try and let me know what you think!

Fool-Proof Plantain Pancakes (AIP/Paleo)

Fool Proof Plantain Pancakes (AIP/Paleo)

(Makes 4-6 small/medium sized pancakes)

Ingredients: 

2 TBS Coconut Oil

2 ripe plantains (yellow and black, no green)

1 TBS + 1 Tsp Coconut Flour

½ tsp tapioca flour (or 2 egg yolks if reintroduced)

¼ tsp baking powder (baking soda and cream of tartar combined in a 2:1 ratio of cream of tartar to baking soda)

Optional Add ins: cinnamon, vanilla extract, …

Directions

Blend all ingredients together in the food processor until smooth. Melt 2 TBS coconut oil in a pan over medium heat. When the coconut oil is melted, reduce the heat to medium low. Spoon your batter into the pan to create small pancakes. Cover (very important) and cook for about 3-4 minutes on the first side or until you see the pancake start to fluff up slightly and see small bubbles form around the edges. Flip them and cook for another 2-3 minutes on the second side or until firm and golden brown.

Skillet Honey Garlic Chicken (AIP/Paleo)

Skillet Honey Garlic Chicken (AIP/Paleo)

One of my most popular recipes is a super simple slow cooker recipe that I came up with in the early days of my transition to the autoimmune protocol, slow cooker honey garlic chicken. It is easy to see why it is popular, it is so simple and uses ingredients that most of us keep in our pantries all of the time. I love my slow cooker and it can often be a great way to save time in the kitchen, that being said it isn’t always possible to get dinner ready 8 hours ahead of time either because you can’t or, let’s be honest, because you forgot. With that in mind, I decided to come up with a skillet version of this slow cooker favorite so that it’s yummy flavors can be enjoyed regardless of how much time you have in the kitchen. This is a great weeknight dinner and it sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Skillet Honey Garlic Chicken (AIP/Paleo)

Skillet Honey Garlic Chicken (AIP/Paleo)

Ingredients 

2 TBS Coconut Oil 

2-3 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

1/4 Cup of Diced Onion

Green beans or substitute broccoli for intro AIP

1 TBS Minced Garlic

1/4 Cup of Coconut Aminos

2 TBS Honey

1 TBS Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 tsp Sea Salt

Directions

In a large skillet melt your coconut oil over medium heat. Cut up your chicken into bite size pieces and add them to your skillet. Cook until browned before adding in your onion, garlic and vegetables. Continue to cook over medium heat until chicken is fully cooked, onion is translucent and vegetables are tender. In a small bowl combine your coconut aminos, honey, apple cider vinegar and salt and stir until well mixed. Pour over your skillet and toss to coat. Serve and Enjoy.