While paleo's most vocal advocates include committed athletes and fitness-first type of people, that doesn't mean that the benefits of eating paleo are limited to hardcore workout junkies. Paleo is great for anyone who wants pretty simple guidelines and feels their best on a diet rich in protein, fat, and greens. We always recommend eating the way that works best for you; there is no one-size-fits-all approach. Paleo is a great way to dip into clean eating, and with some trial and error you should be able to decide if it's an approach that works for you.
Get into the habit of buying a butternut squash whenever you’re at the store. They’re so versatile and able to be used in so many ways, that you’ll have no trouble finding a Paleo friendly recipe to use it in. Here she’ll show you exactly how to take that big bulky squash and tame it so it becomes a tasty soup. If you’ve always avoided these types of squash because you didn’t know how to prepare it, now’s your chance to learn how, and it will be a skill you can use again and again when eating on the Paleo plan.
This sweet potato is stuffed with beef and blueberries, a combination that you may not have ever seen before. They all combine to form a very well-balanced Paleo meal, and you’re getting tons of antioxidants both from the blueberries and the sweet potatoes. The beef gives you protein, while sweet potatoes are a carbohydrate that is digested slowly by the body. There is just as much sweet potatoes as there is beef, with just a bit of blueberries added for good measure. This makes for a microcosm of what it’s like to eat a perfectly portioned Paleo meal.
Get the taste of Thailand in a turkey burger so you can cut out a lot of the fat that comes with beef. On Paleo you want to mix up the type of meat you’re eating, and turkey makes a great choice. It will still give you protein and a savory flavor, and can be a nice respite from beef. In this burger they have red chilli and ginger being used to try to capture some of the Thai flavor, and they’ve served it open-faced on slice of Paleo bread. The avocado on top is a nice addition, it cools off the spices and adds fiber and potassium.
As some of you know, I worked for Laura Fuentes at MOMables last summer. I like to say she gave me the “Blogging for Dummies” course. She had it down, but she needed an intern and I wanted to learn. It was such a fun experience, and now whenever I’m in town I must visit for Bulletproof Coffee or a Paleo treat together. We both love healthy food, blogging, and coffee. A lot.
Tacos can be tricky to make Paleo, but they’ve figured out a good way here by using portobello mushroom caps for the shells. These caps do a good job of holding all of the yummy taco-inspired ingredients, and by the time you finish one of these you’ll feel satisfied, and like you just had Taco Night. The thick texture of the mushrooms means you can pile on the taco toppings and you won’t have to worry about breaking the shell.
These Paleo pizza bites will blow you away with their pizza flavor. She’s managed to make them extra delicious even though there isn’t any cheese in them at all. They look like little baked meatballs, but the cool thing about them is the way they burst with flavor when you eat them. It’s the Italian sausage that gives them the intense flavor, as well as the accompanying ingredients like bell peppers and mushrooms, just like you’d find on a pizza.
Is this book 100% squeaky-clean strict Paleo? No. Ultra-strict Paleo templates call for avoidance of salt, extreme reduction in carbohydrate intake, and never eating dairy of any kind. When performance-minded people blindly follow strict Paleo, the rate of failure and abandonment is high. Why? They haven’t properly tailored Paleo principles to their training demands. As such, you’ll see salt, carb-dense veggies and even some full-fat dairy like ghee in some recipes. And, you’ll even see the occasional option for things like whey protein, white potatoes and white rice. These may not be right for every person, but it’s my stance that if these foods are not problematic for you and may help your performance and recovery, they shouldn’t be 100% off the menu forever.
The cooking methods, the kitchen equipment and the food culture in the illustrations are also based on archaeological finds. Even the clothes and the clay jars are finds from settlements or graves. The glass in the woman’s hand, for example, was found at an excavation site in Sweden. (Illustration: Communicating Culture & Atelier bunterhund Zürich)
There's no one "right way" to do paleo. If you're just starting out, it may take some time to figure out what feels best. Maybe you just eat paleo after 2 p.m. on weekdays; maybe you are so hardcore, you get uneasy just looking at a slice of bread. Most of us fall somewhere in between. We're advocates of a more generally "paleo-based" system, following paleo principles most of the time, but making reasonable exceptions for important events or your mom's famous chocolate chip cookies.
Make-ahead meals work well in so many situations, especially for people who have busy households or simply don’t have much time for cooking. This particular cookbook takes advantage of that concept and directly applies it to paleo cooking. In it, the author offers 85+ different recipes, which are designed so that they can be easily frozen and reheated. Likewise, many of the recipes use a slow cooker, which can act as another way to save time.
A paleo diet promotes high-protein recipes with responsibly raised, antibiotic- and hormone-free meats and poultry, and wild-caught, sustainably sourced seafood. Good fat comes in as a close second, with sources like nuts, seeds, coconut oil, avocado oil, and extra virgin olive oil as excellent choices. Vegetables are also key, as long as they're not too starchy. Avoid white potatoes, but most fresh veggies are fair game.