Dinner

Seasoned Ground Beef/Chicken/Turkey – Easy MEALPREP Recipe!

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It certainly has been awhile. Not simply days or weeks… but rather months since our last post. My apologies. I wish I could say that we were incredibly busy and had no time to even think about blogging, but that isn’t true at all. Yes, there were times when we were quite busy (doesn’t everyone have those busy seasons?), but we most certainly had SOME time to blog something. So shame on us! We will try not to go too long between posts in the future.

I will have a LITTLE bit more time on my hands as I am forced to take a small hiatus from running or anything high-impact really. Stupid me, I decided to train too hard last week for my half-marathon. I started speed work last week, and I pretty much overexerted my feet. After a couple of days of pain in my left foot when I walked, I decided to go to my foot doctor. He told me it wasn’t the fact that I was unfit or incapable of running longer distances, I just put too much pressure on my feet too quickly when I tried to do speed work. I don’t have any symptoms of a stress fracture (thank goodness), but I’m being prescribed an anti-inflammatory medicine, need to take rest the foot, ice it twice-daily, and NOT DO ANY HIGH-IMPACT WORK OUTS. WHOMP WHOMP.

I only do high-impact work outs (running, Insanity, etc.), so this poses a dilemma for me. I guess after resting for a week I’ll get back to PiYo (a more low-impact workout that blends pilates and yoga) to lean out and tone out my muscles.

This is such an unideal time for me to be out of commission! 1) I have a 5K this weekend that I was planning on running with Joseph and my StuCo kids, so now that’s a bust; 2) I NEED to train for my half-marathon coming up in January (Aramco Half anyone? Anyone?); and 3) Joseph is being featured in an P90X Live video on Beachbody on Demand TOMORROW, and I wanted to check out the video and work out with him! #supportivefeyonce (Shameless plug – sign-up for Beachbody on Demand for FREE for 30-days and check him out! Seriously. Go. goo.gl/AbWFOT)

Okay, back to the purpose of this post. Recipe. Summer is usually the time when I cook the most, and this summer was no different. I’ve learned the art of meal-prepping for not just one, but TWO! Joseph eats like a monster, and I’ve been trying to find a variety of ways to not only whip up something that’s somewhat palatable but also something that be made in bulk. This is where ground meat comes in. I like this recipe because it’s so versatile. Honestly, me posting this isn’t really useful because I’m sure anyone could come up with this on their own and/or it’s already something you make. Maybe I’m just late to the game.

Let’s begin! Gather the ingredients!

FOUR (or five) INGREDIENTS NEEDED FOR THIS ONLY! EASY PEASY! Love it!
FOUR (or five) INGREDIENTS NEEDED FOR THIS ONLY! EASY PEASY! Love it!
  • 1-2lbs ground meat (can be ground chicken, beef, turkey, etc., and the amount depends on how much you want to cook)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 diced onion
  • 1-2 minced cloves of garlic (optional, sometimes I’m lazy and give up on the mincing)
  • 1-2TBSP fat of choice (I tend to use extra virgin olive oil over ghee, I’ve found that when you refrigerate ground meat cooked with ghee, it hardens and looks nasty. But if you’re eating it immediately after, ghee gives the meat a better flavoring)
  • Flavorgod Seasoning of choice (if you don’t have this yet… GET IT. I use it for everything!)
  1. Turn stove on to medium heat and place a large pan on top of the stove. When the pan is sufficiently heated, add your fat of choice.
  2. Add your diced onions and garlic. Cook onions a few minutes until it’s slightly translucent.
  3. Add your ground meat to the pan and begin cooking until meat is half-way cooked. Season meat according to your taste
    Season accordingly. This is the CAJUN seasoning of Flavorgod. It looks like I may have over seasoned, but you can honestly barely taste it!
    Season accordingly. This is the CAJUN seasoning of Flavorgod. It looks like I may have over seasoned, but you can honestly barely taste it!

    buds, but don’t be afraid to add a good amount of seasoning! I tend to season things with a lighter hand, but ground meat actually needs a good amount of seasoning before you can begin to taste the seasoning. I wish I could tell you exactly how much to put in… but I honestly eyeball it. Sorry, I’m useless.

  4. Continue cooking until meat is thoroughly done!

I honestly might be completely off in how to cook this. It is possible that I overcook the meat. But Joseph is such an easy eater that I wouldn’t know if I was doing something wrong. So please use your best judgment in cooking this, haha. 🙂

When you’ve cooked this enough, it can easily take under 15 minutes to prep AND cook it. I love to pair this with fresh cucumbers and if I’m feeling particularly naughty, eat it with BROWN RICE (dun dun dun!!!).

I just love this dish because it’s SO easy to make and you virtually only need to go out to the grocery store to buy two to three fresh ingredients if you don’t have it at home already (meat, onions, garlic). Two pounds of this is more than enough protein to meal prep lunches for almost an entire week for two people.

Almost cooked! You can see the light coloring from the cajun seasoning. :)
Almost cooked! You can see the light coloring from the cajun seasoning. 🙂

If you make something similar, what do you like to season your ground meat with? Any other tips and suggestions?

Until the next meal,

Joseph + Jennifer

Valentine’s Day Traditions… Paleo Hawaiian Pizza Recipe

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If there’s one thing that you may need to know about my relationship with Joseph, it’s the fact that we really enjoy creating and maintaining traditions. His annual anniversary cake/dessert that he makes for me is one thing. Our annual holiday schedule (Christmas Eve with my family and Christmas day with his family) is another thing. Our annual puppy-themed greeting cards for every occasion that requires a greeting card. Our weekly Sunday schedule: church, lunch, nap, meal prep for the week. You get the gist. Another such tradition is my annual Valentine’s Day pizza making extravaganza for our Valentine’s Day date shenanigans.

TADA!!! Paleo-friendly Hawaiian Pizza - 6th time is the charm.
TADA!!! Paleo-friendly Hawaiian Pizza – 6th time is the charm.

Joseph loves pizza. That is his food kryptonite/achilles heel/weakness, and I really think that if he could, he would eat pizza every day for the rest of his life. True story. That is why for our first (or second?) Valentine’s Day when our relationship was just blossoming, I baked my first ever pizza for Joseph. I baked a Hawaiian pizza because I assumed that as a Filipino, he loved pineapples so his favorite pizza must have been Hawaiian pizza. Now, I don’t really know if that’s the case, and Joseph has never really clarified this because I think he loves me and doesn’t want to burst my bubble, so the tradition stuck.

As the years have gone by, my pizza-making skills have morphed and improved. The first few years I bought canned pizza dough, canned pineapples, and everything was just clearly pre-made/processed. I think around the third year is when I decided to make it somewhat healthier by purchasing canned WHEAT pizza dough and using fresh pineapples instead. Last year is when I attempted my first paleo pizza. It was… okay. And this year I have continued the tradition with another Hawaiian pizza, and yes, I made it paleo once again. And wow. I’m not going to lie, but it was absolutely fantastic. Delicious. I am quite proud of myself.

A BIG THANK YOU TO Paleo Spirit for the paleo pizza dough recipe. It really brought my pizza together. People might assume that making dough from scratch is difficult and time-consuming, and time-consuming it may be; however, it’s definitely NOT difficult, and it’s definitely worth it. So let’s begin, shall we?

Adding the warm water and oil and mixing with the dry ingredients. This consistency is good! Don't worry because it WILL become dough-y soon!
Adding the warm water and oil and mixing with the dry ingredients. This consistency is good! Don’t worry because it WILL become dough-y soon!

Paleo Pizza Dough:

  • 1 cup tapioca flour (starch) (plus more for rolling out dough)
  • 1/3 cup + 2-3 tablespoons coconut flour, separated
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 large egg, whisked

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees F. Combine the tapioca flour, coconut flour (minus the 2-3 tablespoons), and sea salt in a large bowl.

Add the oil and warm water and mix with the dry ingredients. Don’t worry if it doesn’t look dough-y yet. This will happen soon! Add the whisked egg and mix.

Finally, take your 2-3 tablespoons of coconut flour and add to the mixture until it begins to form into a soft but sticky dough.

Before the pizza dough is baked! I made mine into a heart and had a little extra for a small pancake pizza.
Before the pizza dough is baked! I made mine into a heart and had a little extra for a small pancake pizza.

On PARCHMENT paper (not wax paper – I made that mistake last year. And the parchment paper really changed things), add a bit of tapioca flour to your roller pin and the parchment and roll out your dough. Be carefully of adding TOO much tapioca flour or else your dough will be too dense. I think I made that mistake last year as well. I always make my pizza dough into a heart shape, but you can roll it out into a regular pizza shape.

The dough is really break-able at this point, so be careful! Transfer the parchment paper onto a baking sheet/pizza baking sheet/etc. Bake for 12-15 minutes depending on how “done” you would like your pizza to be. I baked mine for 12 minutes!

Hawaiian Pizza:

  • Paleo Pizza Dough slightly pre-cooked
  • Organic Pizza Sauce with NO SUGAR ADDED (purchased at Whole Foods – checked the ingredients to ensure everything was paleo-friendly)
  • Almond “mozzarella” cheese substitute
  • Pre-cut pineapple chunks
  • Applegate Uncured Black Forest Ham diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

This is the brand of almond cheese I use!
This is the brand of almond cheese I use!

Cut your toppings (pineapple and ham) to the desired pizza-topping size. I purchase pre-cut pineapple chunks and cut them into even smaller pieces. I once tried to cut an entire pineapple… that didn’t work out so well. Pineapple cutting is not my thing. Place toppings to the side.

After letting the pizza crust cool for a bit, I took a spoon and carefully ladled the pizza sauce over my pizza. Add as much or as little sauce as you would like. It is YOUR pizza!

You can layer the cheese and toppings however you would like (cheese first, toppings first, what have you), but after 5+ years of this, I think I figured out a way that really makes the pizza delectable. I lightly sprinkled the almond cheese over the pizza to where there was still a lot of sauce showing through the cheese. I added half the pineapples and ham to the pizza. The pizza should still look SPARSE. I then added the full amount of cheese to the pizza, and I topped it off with the rest of my pineapple chunks and ham pieces. It’s almost like a double layer of cheese and toppings. Yums.

Seriously, SO GOOD.
Seriously, SO GOOD.

Place the pizza in the oven. Cook until toppings are thoroughly heated. I put my timer for 5 minutes at a time, and I simply checked my pizza after each time was up to ensure the crust was not burning. It took about 10-15 minutes. I do want to mention that the almond cheese substitute does not melt as well as regular cheese. I assume because it is a substitute. However, it tastes fine! And voila! You have yourself a paleo-friendly pizza! You can switch out whatever toppings you would like to meet your taste buds.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day weekend! Joseph and I enjoyed a casual weekend together. Honestly, it was just like any other Saturday we had… running in the morning, me making brunch for lunch, running errands, and then dinner. The only thing different was that he surprised me with flowers in the morning before the run (d’awww <3).

Joseph's gifts to me. Perfect. I love him!
Joseph’s gifts to me. Puppy V-Day card, ZBB CD and tickets, paleo double chocolate chewy cookies baked by him, and surprise morning roses. I’m a lucky duck, I know.

Then we had a small gift exchange after lunch – I gave him The Paleo Performance cookbook and a 26.2 mile car decal, and he surprised me with tickets to the Zac Brown Band concert! And finally after dinner, we went to go watch Kingsman (good movie, I recommend. But a little on the gory side, wow).

I also tried to be cutesy and romantic by using an idea I found off of Pinterest (wow, have I ever mentioned how much I love Pinterest?). While making Joseph do the dishes after lunch (hehehe *evil laugh*), I went into his bathroom and decorated his mirror with sticky notes I had written on previously. I think the original Pinterest idea had you write down things you loved about your significant other, but I just wrote down everything possible. Memories, things I love about him, inside jokes, positive comments, etc. I made them into a heart. I was feeling quite sneaky and proud of myself when I walked out of his bathroom. And then…

  • Joseph: Were you doing something shady in there?
  • Me: What?
  • Joseph: You were in the restroom for a long time. And I know you didn’t poop. Or did you? You don’t poop that long.
  • Me: ….I wasn’t doing anything shady! I was pooping!
  • Joseph: … you look shady. I need to go to the restroom now anyways.
  • Me: WAIT NO! WHY! ….I JUST POOPED. IT SMELLS!
  • Joseph: …Why are you on the floor?
  • Me: *crying/laughing* I don’t know! GO TO THE BATHROOM LATER, IT’S TOO SOON!

    Pinterest-inspired love notes on his mirror.
    Pinterest-inspired love notes on his mirror.

I honestly don’t know why I was on the floor. Sometimes, I get so embarrassed when I’m caught trying to be sneaky that I cry. Or I laugh so hard that I cry. Either way, I end up crying and on the floor. Don’t worry, Joseph accepts this. He eventually goes into the restroom, and he has that “I knew it, I know you” face, but he still appreciates the romantic gesture. Except for the fact that it’s covering his mirror and now he can’t see himself lol. Oops.

All in all, it was a perfect day with my Valentine, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Until the next meal,

Jennifer

I leave you with this
I leave you with this random picture.

New Year’s Resolutions and Kimchi Chicken Crock Pot Recipe

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Happy New Years, everyone! It’s always crazy to me how quickly time flies. Are we celebrating and heralding in a brand new year already? When I reflect upon the past year, it is overwhelming to realize all of the milestones that have occurred in 2014 alone. Joseph starting a new job as well as teaching a new Insanity class, Joseph completing not only a half marathon but also a 25K and a 30K race, me receiving my school and district’s rookie teacher of the year award, me undergoing foot surgery to restructure my right foot, a couple of our close friends getting engaged, my brother’s wedding to my beautiful sister-in-law, us learning how to ballroom dance, us starting a food blog (that we have sadly not kept up to date in recent months – we know, we know)… so many memorable milestones within a short span of one year. I think that we often forget to reflect on all of the wonderful things that happen in our lives.

I know that many people scoff at New Year’s Resolutions, “People just stop after a month anyways! People should be striving ALL THE TIME to achieve their resolutions!” and so on and so forth. But I think it is refreshing to take the time to sit back and think about what you might want to do achieve. Why should we look down on any person who wishes to make a change in their life, even if it ends up being a temporary change? At least they tried. And who knows, maybe the resolution will stick, and it ends up being a huge part of their lives? I say, go for it. Make your New Year’s Resolutions, and don’t be afraid of what others might think.

Joseph and I sat down today to reflect on our year and discuss what our New Year’s Resolutions might be. For the most part, Joseph and I have very similar goals, with minor tweaks here and there to fit our individual lives.

  1. Eat better! For Joseph that’s eating healthier and for me, that’s making the decision to eat out only once a month.
  2. Spend less and save more.
  3. Rely less on social media so that we can focus on each other and those around us (i.e for me, that means checking social media accounts once a day).
  4. Be more cognizant and reflective. This includes praying daily, being more open-minded, and being more patient and forgiving with each other and those around us.
  5. Stay active, no matter how hectic our lives become. Whether that’s training for our upcoming half marathons and/or his full marathon, or even just taking the time to dance with each other again just because.
  6. And finally, to simply love more.

After going over our New Year’s Resolutions with each other, we realized that not only did we have similar resolutions, but our resolutions were really things that we should be striving for every day for the rest of our lives. So I guess, instead of calling these our New Year’s Resolutions… we should call these our LIFE RESOLUTIONS. What are your New Year’s Resolutions?

I can’t leave this entry without a recipe, especially since we’ve left everyone hanging for at least a month! Shame on us! I’ve really been utilizing the crock pot a lot lately, so I’d like to share with you a recipe I tried a few weeks back. I found this recipe from a blog, Stuff I Make My Husband, and it looked so simple and easy! Crock pot recipes usually are quite simple and easy. You literally take whatever you think might taste good together… and just throw in the crock pot and see what happens! Seriously.

Now, when I made this, it ended up having a very thin and soup-like consistency. Very similar to the korean soup, kimchijigae, but with less kick. I’m not sure if it’s supposed to be a soup, or if it’s supposed to just be chicken with cabbage that’s mildly sauce-like, but I think you can play around with the ingredient measurements and add/remove whatever you would like. I may add chopped onions next time!

GATHER THE INGREDIENTS!!!

  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 scallions sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbs coconut aminos
  • 1 Tbs dark sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp high-quality ground ginger
  • 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • About 2 cups cabbage kimchi

DIRECTIONS

IMG_6403 IMG_6404

  1. Combine all of your ingredients except for the scallions, chicken, and kimchi in the slow cooker. Leave the scallions and kimchi in the fridge as you won’t be needing them for a few hours!
  2. Add the chicken thighs into the crock pot, and spoon some of the sauce on top.
  3. Cover and cook for 4 to 6 hours on low. If in a rush, like I was, blast on high for 2 hours. (This may have been the reason for the soup-y consistency I had)
  4. When you are almost ready to serve, turn heat to high (or in my case, keep it on high), add the kimchi, and cook for about 20 more minutes. Serve sprinkled with the scallion greens.

Voila! Easy peasy, and plenty of spicy kick to keep you warm on a cold winter’s night. Special thanks to Stuff I Make My Husband for the recipe!

IMG_6407

Until the next meal,

Joseph and Jennifer

Paleo Chicken and Kale Stew Recipe – 5 ingredients only!

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Winter = perfect crock pot season (click here to purchase the crockpot we have). Okay, to be honest, every season is perfect crock pot season, but there’s something about winter that makes you thinking of a simmering stew in a crock pot ready and waiting for you when you get home from a long day at work as pure bliss.

I found this recipe while trying to browse easy crock pot recipes that were paleo-friendly. Thank you to 5 Ingredient Paleo for the recipe!!! This recipe caught my eye because it only called for five ingredients! Yes, count that, FIVE ingredients! It’s also incredibly easy on top of that. You simply throw the ingredients in the slow cooker, turn it on, and let it go. That’s what I love about crock pots/slow cookers, one of the best kitchen tools for lazy cooking. Throw in the ingredients in the morning, go to work, and when you get home you have a meal ready for you. No fuss, no muss. So, let’s get started!

Gather the ingredients!
  • 2 pounds chicken breast
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, cut into chunks
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste + 1 cup of water
  • 2-4 cups of baby kale or chopped regular kale
  • Additional seasoning (optional)

Simply throw all of the ingredients except for the kale in the slow cooker, add your cup of water and tomato paste, and then stir to incorporate everything. You do not need to chop up the chicken breast because they will shred easily once cooked in the slow cooker. I added a dash of basil and rosemary. I honestly don’t know if it did anything, but the dish turned out well in the end. I think you can definitely play around with the ingredients by adding different seasonings/spices as well as other veggies as well (carrots? white potatoes? possiblities are endless!).

Chop all ingredients (except for chicken) and throw everything in the slow cooker (minus the kale). THAT'S IT!
Chop all ingredients (except for chicken) and throw everything in the slow cooker (minus the kale). THAT’S IT!

The recipe from the original blog post calls to cook everything on low for about 6-8 hours. And the in the last hour of cooking, open your slow cooker (slowly), and once again stir to mix everything up. The stirring should then shred your chicken easily. Add in the kale, and mix until well incorporated. Cook for about 30-60 minutes longer until the kale is tender.

After adding the kale and mixing to incorporate everything.
After adding the kale and mixing to incorporate everything.

I was a little pressed for time, so I blasted the slow cooker on high for 3-4 hours. I then switched it back to low for another hour, threw in the kale, and then blasted the slow cooker on high for the last hour. The chicken was not as easy to shred, but it was still shreddable with some prodding and poking on my end.

And voila! The stew turned out fantastic. Perfect dish to warm us up on a cold evening!

Piping hot bowl of chicken and kale stew. YUM.
Piping hot bowl of chicken and kale stew. YUM.

Until the next meal,

Joseph and Jennifer

Almost Crusted Chicken Recipe

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Ok, so I was somewhat coerced into writing this post by my loving gf, but here it is! Do you want GAINS? “Of course, Joseph. What kind of question is that?” Then you’ll want to add chicken to your arsenal of protein.

Chicken breasts/thighs are a great source of lean protein. They’re easy to make and a lot cheaper than other meat sources. They go a long way when it comes to meal prepping, unless you just eat them all with no remorse, which I sometimes do (ask Jennifer or any of my previous roommates). You’ll want to stick with white meat as it is less fatty.

Enough of the intro, this recipe takes about 30 minutes to prepare, more or less.

Ingredients Needed:

  • 3 chicken breasts or thighs, about 6-8 oz. each (make sure it’s defrosted)
  • ½ cup of blanched almond flour/meal (you can purchase here)
  • 3 tbs. of FlavorGod Seasonings, trust me you’ll want THIS seasoning and not some crap from stores (buy here: http://flavorgod.com/)
  • 1 large egg

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and grab 2 bowls. Set aside your chicken breasts for now (cut them if needed).

Beautiful gf cutting the chicken breasts.
Beautiful gf cutting the chicken breasts.

Put raw egg in one bowl. In the other bowl, place your ½ cup of almond flour and 3 tbs. of FlavorGod seasoning (my favorite is EVERYTHING SEASONING SPICY, sorry future digestive system).

We used Lemon Garlic Seasoning for this batch, but my favorite is Everything Seasoning Spicy.
We used Lemon Garlic Seasoning for this batch, but my favorite is Everything Seasoning Spicy.

Mix the flour and seasoning, and be sure to break apart at clumps.

Make sure to smooth out any clumps in the almond/seasoning mixture.
Make sure to smooth out any clumps in the almond/seasoning mixture.
Almond flour and seasoning
Almond flour and seasoning

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Place the chicken into the egg bowl to coat it. You’ll then place the egg-coated chicken into the bowl with the almond flour and seasoning mix to give it a thin almond coating.

IMG_5363
Dipping chicken in egg and then almond flour mixture
Thoroughly coat chicken with egg, making sure to shake off excess egg before dipping in the flour mixture.
Thoroughly coat chicken with egg, making sure to shake off excess egg before dipping in the flour mixture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Put the chicken on a baking sheet (with or without parchment paper) and place in the oven for 20 minutes or until fully cooked.

Before placing in the oven.
Before placing in the oven – baking sheet does not need any spray.
After baking in the oven for about 20 minutes.
After baking in the oven for about 20 minutes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THAT’S IT! It’s fast and easy. If you want to double the amount of chicken you make, just double the ingredients.

Moist on the inside, even when microwaved a day later for meal prep.
Moist on the inside, even when microwaved a day later for meal prep.
Double the ingredients for meal prep. Meal prep shown with garlic mashed cauliflower.
Double the ingredients for meal prep. Meal prep shown with garlic mashed cauliflower.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to hashtag #jenjoandpaleo when you cook with a recipe inspired by our blog! We thank everyone for their support!

Almond crusted chicken breast served with steamed green beans and garlic mashed cauliflower.
Almond crusted chicken breast served with steamed green beans and garlic mashed cauliflower.

Until the next meal,

Joseph and Jennifer

Herbed Chicken Drumsticks with Cherry Tomatoes

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Hi everyone! Time to share another recipe! I’m honestly not sure where the original source of this recipe is. I came across this recipe about four to five years ago and have since memorized it and tweaked it to my needs. I’m sure there are various versions of this recipe all over the Internet and cookbooks, so if anybody knows of the original source of THIS exact recipe, please send it to me so that I can provide this recipe with the proper credit! The measurements of all the ingredients are possibly off…. only because I’ve made this dish so many times I tend to eyeball everything that I do.

I LOVE this dish because not only is it paleo-friendly, but it is incredibly easy to make and you don’t have to have a “paleo-pantry” to make this. In fact, I used to make this dish in college before I even know what “paleo” was. At the time, I didn’t realize that this recipe was paleo-friendly, heck, I didn’t even know paleo was! When I found the recipe, I simply thought to myself, “I’m in college and need something easy to cook and impress people with. This will do. This will do.” So for those of you with “regular” pantries, this is certainly something you can make! And for those of you who claim you don’t cook well, this is also something you can make easily!

Okay, time to gather the ingredients!

  • 5-6 chicken drumsticks (this can probably be made with chicken breast, thigh, whatever your preference is – but I am personally a big fan of drumsticks!)
  • 1 cup of cherry/grape tomatoes
  • 1 small onion (I use white onions)
  • 1 medium white potato, optional (Whole30 approved, but in moderation)
  • 3-4 Tsb of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1-2 tsp of thyme
  • 1-2 tsp of oregano
  • 1-2 tsp of basil
  • 1-2 tsp of rosemary

Beginning note: You do NOT need to wash chicken before cooking it. Rinsing your raw chicken with water actually distributes infection around your kitchen! Additionally, chicken companies already go through a cleaning process that ensures the chicken is germ-free. Any bacteria that is lingering will dissipate when your chicken is cooking. Still tempted to wash your chicken? See more information here and here.

WASH YOUR HANDS. Preheat the oven to 375°F.Take your onion and chop it into bite-size chunks. You do NOT have to be nice and neat when cutting these onions! You just want to cut them to desired bite-size pieces that meet your preferences.

These do not have to be chopped in any fancy way - just easy and messy bite-size chunks!
These do not have to be chopped in any fancy way – just easy and messy bite-size chunks!

Cut the cherry tomatoes in half. I’m not exactly sure why I do this; I assume it’s because I want some of the tomato juices to seep throughout the dish to make it more tender and juicy. I suppose you can just… not cut the cherry tomatoes and still have the same dish. I admit, cutting the tomatoes is somewhat a pain in the butt! Sometimes I’ll chop up some white potatoes and mix it in with the chicken, tomato, and onion mixture before I throw it in the oven to add some carbs and to make the dish a little more filling. Joseph eats a lot – so I try to do what I can to ensure his stomach gets its fill of good food! But the potatoes are OPTIONAL, so you do not need to add potatoes if you don’t want to.

Throw the onion, tomatoes, and drumsticks all together in your baking dish (9 X 11 is sufficient).

Just throw everything in the baking dish!
Just throw everything in the baking dish!

Go ahead and drizzle the extra-virgin olive oil all over your chicken mixture and add the spices. You can add more/less EVO-oil and spices depending on your desires. I just gave you the measurements as a general guideline. Then, with your clean hands or a mixing spoon – mix everything very well until everything is evenly coated with the EVO-oil and spices.

About four tablespoons of EVO-oil and 1-2 teaspoons of all the spices.
About four tablespoons of EVO-oil and 1-2 teaspoons of all the spices.
Make sure to mix everything well so that the chicken and veggies are evenly coated in EVO-oil and spices!
Make sure to mix everything well so that the chicken and veggies are evenly coated in EVO-oil and spices!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Place baking dish (uncovered) into oven and bake for about 50 minutes at 375°F. Turn drumsticks over halfway (25 minutes). Take out after 50 minutes, but make sure to check a drumstick to ensure the chicken is cooked thoroughly.

Fresh out of the oven, smells so good!!!
Fresh out of the oven, smells so good!!!

We served this alongside a simple salad (salad spring mix, mixed berries, and drizzled with Tessemae’s balsamic dressing) and steamed green beans!

Dinner is served! Herbed chicken drumsticks with grape tomatoes and potatoes, steamed green beans, and a simple mixed berry salad with balsamic dressing. YUM IN OUR TUMS!!!
Dinner is served! Herbed chicken drumsticks with grape tomatoes and potatoes, steamed green beans, and a simple mixed berry salad with balsamic dressing. YUM IN OUR TUMS!!!

I think that you could probably play around with different oils and spices and maybe add different types of veggies into the dish. I love how easy and versatile this recipe can be, and I love how you can just tweak it to meet your needs! Hope you enjoyed this recipe!

Remember, if you try this recipe at home please reply to this blogpost and provide your feedback. We’d love to hear how the recipe worked out for you! And if you’re one of those crazy “I take pictures of my food and post it” type of people like me, feel free to use the hashtag #jenjoandpaleo to support us!

We tried Revive Root Beer and Living Limon!
We tried Revive Root Beer and Living Limon!
He enjoyed the kombucha! He says it tastes like a carbonated drink.
He enjoyed the kombucha! He says it tastes like a carbonated drink.
Not sure if I liked it too much - it tasted like beer to me, and I hate alcohol. :P
Not sure if I liked it too much – it tasted like beer to me, and I hate alcohol. 😛

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Until the next meal,

Joseph and Jennifer

 

Asian-Inspired Ground Beef, Mushroom, and Broccoli Slaw Lettuce Wraps

Posted on Updated on

Our first recipe post! Huzzah! The first recipe we are sharing is one that I hold close to my heart. It is one of the very first “paleo-friendly dishes” we made that wasn’t a horrific disaster (remind me to tell you about the first time I made mashed cauliflower – yikes). This is my easy go-to dish when I just need to whip up something quickly to eat. I also use this dish to introduce my friends who are hesitant of paleo-cooking to show them that eating clean and healthy is not unsatisfying by any means. Whenever I’ve cooked and served this to my friends who have never encountered a paleo-friendly dish, they are surprised by how delicious and filling it is.

When Joseph and I first made this dish, it took us awhile to get the hang of it. We were fumbling around in the kitchen – chopping things here, measuring things there, forgetting a step or two (my fault mostly haha), but I can now proudly say this is one of the dishes that I am not afraid of serving to my friends and family!

This recipe is taken from Nom Nom Paleo (of course), but I’ve very slightly tweaked it to meet our needs. I’ve added a few side notes about tips and tricks I picked up as well as commentary on my own thoughts about the recipe. Pictures are included, everyone loves pictures!

Assemble these ingredients:

  • 1 lb of ground meat (we’ve used grass-fed ground beef OR chicken in the past; I personally like using ground chicken because it tastes “lighter” to me, and Joseph has no preference because he eats anything and everything)
  • 1 lb of thinly sliced mushrooms (we use brown bella mushrooms)
  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped (we use whatever is available, which is typically white onion)
  • 2 tablespoons of lard (we typically use either ghee or extra virgin olive oil)
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1-2 cups of broccoli slaw (This can be found at most local grocery stores – check the area that has the pre-made salad/pre-cut veggies, and you will find bags of “broccoli slaw.” We’ve purchased ours at Whole Foods, Kroger, and even Fiesta)
  • ½ cup of shredded carrots (I do not add this – I find that the broccoli slaw I buy usually has enough carrot in it. Plus I am too lazy to shred my own carrots)
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced (Scallions are also known as green onions!)
  • a handful of cilantro, coarsely chopped (optional, some of you are genetically engineered to dislike cilantro so I’ve been told)
  • 1-2 tablespoons of paleo-friendly fish sauce (Red Boat brand fish sauce, possible blog post to come later. Can be found at Whole Foods. Strongly recommended by Michelle Tam of Nom Nom Paleo!)
  • 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 tablespoons of coconut aminos (Paleo-friendly soy sauce)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

First tip of the day… make sure to write down EVERYTHING you need for your recipe(s) at the grocery store. Or at least, be very certain you have everything in your cart before checking out. Funny story that happened earlier today (…except not so funny to Joseph at the time), I mentally had everything we needed for our lettuce wraps in my head, and I let Joseph know, “Okay, we just need: broccoli slaw, onion, green onion, mushrooms, and cilantro! Woo!” He purchases the items, and then we go on our merry way and begin cooking dinner at his apartment. As we are slicing and dicing, I start to heat up the skillet because we’re about to really get going. Joseph then stops abruptly and asks, “Hey… don’t we need lettuce for our lettuce wraps?” Me, “…OHHHHH NOOOOOOOOOOO. HOW CAN WE EAT LETTUCE WRAPS WITH NO LETTUCE! WAAAHHH!” (May not have been that dramatic) And he drives back to the grocery store to buy a head of lettuce. Oops. Sadly, this is not the first time that something of this nature has happened to us. I’ve mentioned this before, and you will see it time and time again, I can be… unaware at times. So yes, lesson learned for the most part: MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ALL INGREDIENTS BEFORE COOKING!

Apologies for the tangent, now here is the important part: how we made the dish. We first chopped the white onion. The recipe calls for one whole small onion, and we tend to purchase larger onions – so for us, we only needed to use half a white onion. Because we cook together, we tend to do multiple steps at once, so while one of us cuts the onion (I usually start cutting, then I start crying…. so Joseph finishes chopping for me hehe) the other will slice the mushrooms, green onions, and the cilantro. It makes the cooking process much faster. But if you’re by yourself, I recommend cutting, chopping, slicing, dicing, mincing before you do any cooking.

The onions can be pulverized in food processor, minced, chopped, cut in slices, etc. Most of this recipe can be adjusted to your needs!
The onions can be pulverized in food processor, minced, chopped, cut in slices, etc. Most of this recipe can be adjusted to your needs!
We purchase our mushrooms pre-sliced (read an article on Rachel Ray that said it was actually more cost-efficient), and we cut them in half for easier bite-size pieces. We've seen recipes where the mushrooms are sliced then. Preferences, preferences, people!
We purchase our mushrooms pre-sliced (read an article on Rachel Ray that said it was actually more cost-efficient), and we cut them in half for easier bite-size pieces. We’ve seen recipes where the mushrooms are sliced then. Preferences, preferences, people!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After you’ve prepped most of the food, heat up your skillet to about medium heat and throw your chopped onions in there with the lard. I usually use ghee as my lard (explanation of ghee to come later), but decided to use extra virgin olive oil this time. Cook the onions until they are slightly translucent and then add the sliced mushrooms. Add the minced garlic cloves and a dash of kosher salt and ground black pepper (your preference).

Cook onions first with olive oil until translucent and then add the mushrooms!
Cook onions first with olive oil until translucent and then add the mushrooms!

Then add the ground beef/chicken and cook and stir the meat until it is broken up into smaller chunks and no longer pink. We then added the coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar, and fish sauce. The recipe asks for 1-2 tablesoons, and we usually add about 1 1/2 tablespoon of each. DO NOT SKIP THIS PART. I (Jennifer) made the mistake once of foregoing the sauces… that was a catastrophe. Incredibly dry and bland, worst mistake ever.

Cook the meat until no longer pink, then add the sauces. DO NOT FORGET THE SAUCES.
Cook the meat until no longer pink, then add the sauces. DO NOT FORGET THE SAUCES.
Adding the veggies after the meat is cooked - they cook quickly!
Adding the veggies after the meat is cooked – they cook quickly!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the meat is fully cooked, add the broccoli slaw. You can add shredded carrots if you wish, but for us, there is enough carrot in our broccoli slaw that we don’t feel the need to add any extra. Again, this is all preference. I’ve included a picture of broccoli slaw because when I first encountered this ingredient in the recipe I was thinking, “WHAT IS THIS???!” But I’ve grown to love it because I find it very versatile to cook with! The veggies soften very quickly after you add them to the skillet.

The mysterious broccoli slaw... Can be found by the herbs/greens area of a grocery store.
The mysterious broccoli slaw… Can be found by the herbs/greens area of a grocery store.

The last thing I add are the scallions and cilantro since they cook the quickest! Stir everything around so that everything is evenly distributed throughout the skillet.

Adding the cilantro and scallions last!!!
Adding the cilantro and scallions last!!!

Make sure to wash your lettuce before eating with it, and then you can spoon the mixture onto your lettuce and NOM AWAY! Most people say that butter lettuce is best for lettuce wraps, but Joseph and I actually prefer iceburg lettuce with our wraps.  And voila! You have easy-peasy Asian-Inspired Ground Beef, Mushroom, and Broccoli Slaw Lettuce Wraps!

The finished meal. This can feed about 2-3 people.
The finished meal. This can feed about 2-3 people.

We finished off our dinner with some Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams Dark Chocolate paired with Dang Coconut Chips. Both of which are paleo-friendly (sidenote: Jeni’s Splendid is only paleo-friendly if you are not strict about milk/dairy as some paleo-followers are, which this contains). HAPPY STUMMIES.

Dang Coconut Chips - these are DANG GOOD!!!
Dang Coconut Chips – these are DANG GOOD!!!
Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams - the most paleo-friendly ice cream out there (if you are not strict about dairy)
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams – the most paleo-friendly ice cream out there (if you are not strict about dairy)
Munching on some dang coconut chips. So good.
Munching on some dang coconut chips. So good.
Yes, we eat out of the ice cream pint, don't judge us. Using Dang Coconut Chips as ice cream topping is ingenius!
Yes, we eat out of the ice cream pint, don’t judge us. Using Dang Coconut Chips as ice cream topping is ingenius!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Original recipe can be found here at Nom Nom Paleo. If you try this recipe at home please reply to this blogpost and provide your feedback. We’d love to hear how the recipe worked out for you! And if you’re one of those crazy “I take pictures of my food and post it” type of people like me, feel free to use the hashtag #jenjoandpaleo to support us!

Happy happy us!
Happy happy us!

Until the next meal,

Joseph and Jennifer