I often turn my nose at the idea of “paleo-izing” items from modern food culture. Bread, brownies, pancakes, noodles… attempting to recreate these items doesn’t allow you to fully change your habits. One of the first rules of new habits: Set yourself up for success. Not failure.
In my head, I either change or don’t change. Eating paleo bread makes me want to choose regular bread when there isn’t a paleo option. While I’m pretty black and white for myself, I understand folks may be easing their way into this lifestyle change or, perhaps, look to such food items for comfort or tradition.
CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES
That said, I’ve been known to bake chocolate chip cookies from time to time. You can find my Famous Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe in Paleo Parent‘s first book “Eat Like A Dinosaur” along with an arsenal of approachable go-to’s for families or people with a traditional palate including freezable chicken nuggets, fruit roll ups, waffles and more. I respect their copyright and would encourage you to check out the book for yourself, it’s been one of the most used recipe books in our house! Not to mention, there is a children’s book, their familiar back story of (un)health and an easy-to-read allergy index included on every single page.
Now that I got you all amped up on the idea of a delicious chocolate chip cookie, I’ve got great news for my local friends! Betsy’s Bakery created their first prototype! As soon as I saw their Facebook post about Paleo cookies, I grabbed a kid and headed right over. As the story goes, Betsy has Celiac disease and her bakery is entirely gluten-free! She also has dairy free, vegan and now (the most healthy of all) paleo options!
When we chatted briefly about her chocolate chip cookies, future recipes and marketing to the audience of these sweet morsels, she thought Fridays would be a great day to offer fresh Paleo items. I agreed! As a used-to-be Crossfit’er I know how focused I was during the week, but by Friday it was definitely time for a reward. What better way to celebrate then with a naturally sweetened, protein and (good) fat packed dessert that tastes like a cheat, but isn’t! Remember to refrigerate paleo baked goods – fresh ingredients stay fresher when chilled.
Paleo eating is easy and shouldn’t overwhelm anyone with ‘how to cook’. I am not, repeat, AM NOT a ‘good cook’. In fact, I didn’t begin really cooking, or understanding how to cook, until I decided to eat paleo. Plants and protein, so EASY. I typically roast or crock pot large proteins, I’ll pan cook smaller portions of proteins, and sauté or roast veggies. The creativity comes in the spice blends, medleys and pairings.
- Preheat oven to 350
- Add a dollop of coconut oil or grass-fed butter to a baking sheet
- Place in oven till oil is melted
- Toss chopped veggies onto sheet
- Season to taste (salt, pepper and garlic are my go-to’s, be as simple or creative as you’d like with your spice)
- Toss veggies every 10-15 minutes until desired – typically around 25-30 minutes for most of my vegetables – the softer the veggie the faster it cooks so I may wait to add onions to a sheet until half way through, etc
Alternatively – and a great way to cook ‘fries’ (sweet potato, carrot, zucchini, etc):
- Preheat oven to 350
- Chop vegetables to even sizing, add to bowl
- Pour melted coconut oil or grass-fed butter on top
- Season with preferred blend
- Add to baking sheet
- Toss every 10-15 minutes until cooked
CHICKEN on the bone
I get asked how I roast my chicken a lot. I forget how something so simple can feel so scary for a new cook. It wasn’t 3 years ago that I cooked less than 10% of the time and now I do most of the cooking/preparing. Paleo food is EASY and that’s the whole point. While I roast/bake most of my chicken the same way (350 and flip/marinate every 20 minutes till cooked – whole birds I flip every 40 minutes) the wings I made for dinner tonight were too good not to share. I only regret I didn’t take a snapshot, but they were gone before I gave it a thought. Moist and crispy. They were a flavor so delicious the whole family enjoyed them.
I bake my wings and other chicken parts atop a cookie cooling rack, over tin foil on a baking sheet. Sophisticated.
- Preheat oven to 350
- Place wings on rack apparatus mentioned above, or something similar
- Brush with coconut oil or grass-fed butter
- Sprinkle with salt, pepper and Savory Spice Shop‘s Red Rocks Hickory Smoke Seasoning: Hickory smoke salt, Hungarian and California paprika, roasted garlic, toasted onion, black pepper, hickory smoke flavoring and oregano OR ANY OTHER SPICE/MARINADE YOU CONJURE UP
- Bake for 20 minutes
- Flip wings and repeat steps 3, 4 then 5
- When timer goes off the 2nd time, flip wings as you place them onto the tin foil covered baking sheet
- Wrap wings – I use an additional piece of foil for leaking and insulation – place in oven
- Turn heat up to 450
- Bake for 10 minutes
- Flip foil package and turn off oven – this is when I make salads, get the table set, etc.
I don’t have a lot of time today so let’s keep this short and sweet, I hit a total of $109.06. If I were shopping at one store, I would have put back a pack of wings or thighs, or perhaps a bag of apples. Instead I put back my baking essentials of honey, vanilla and something else at the 2nd store, in order to stay closer to the budget of $100. It’s not a hardship to be without stock for cookies or muffins. Choice!
This week’s menu was made after I went shopping based on the available funds, sales and meat choices that were in the stores. If you noticed, I used a $1 off coupon for some nitrate free pepperoni – just check Applegate’s website!
What are you having for dinner this week? Leave a comment or join us on Facebook to chime in on another topic.
To check out previous $100/week budget Menu & Receipt posts click below.