Tag Archives: gluten free

Quinoa salad

7 Dec

Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is one of those questionable foods when it comes to classifying something as paleo or not.  Some people (not me) call grass fed butter paleo.  I call quinoa paleo.  Whether or not you want to consider quinoa paleo the fact remains that it is a gluten free seed that is high in protein.  This is a great source of protein for those who do not eat meat, or have only recently started to eat meat and cannot eat it every day.  The original quinoa salad recipe comes from my friend Cameron who makes it as a great side for barbecues!  This is my modified version that has replaced the ingredients that are absolutely not paleo.

1 1/2 cups quinoa
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 yellow bell peppers, chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and diced
1 1/2 tbl. red wine vinegar
2 tbl. ground coriander
5 tbl. fresh lime juice
1 tsp. kosher or sea salt
2 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/3 cup olive oil
Place quinoa in a fine mesh strainer and wash thoroughly with cool water.  In a sauce pan of salted boiling water, cook the quinoa for 10 minutes.  Drain the quinoa and place in a mesh strainer over a pot with boiling water (the strainer and quinoa should not make contact with the water), cover quinoa with a tea towel, and steam quinoa for 10 minutes.  Mix the peppers with the red wine vinegar.  Transfer quinoa to a large bowl, when cool mix with peppers and coriander.  Whisk together lime juice, salt, and cumin.  While whisking drizzle in a constant stream of olive oil.  Pour dressing over quinoa and mix well.  Serve cold or room temperature.

Paleo Gingerbread

28 Oct

Living in New England there are certain flavors one associates with certain times of year and gingerbread is definitely a fall/winter flavor!  I was able to create an amazing light, moist paleo gingerbread with only 1 teaspoon of sweetener per serving!  This recipe follows all Lurong Paleo Challenge 2012 guidelines.  It was a huge hit after dinner last night.  I was asked, “Did you use coconut flour?”  “No, I didn’t use any type of flour.”  “Then what’s it made of?”  See below and enjoy!


1 cup pumpkin

1 cup mashed sweet potato

2 cups almond butter

1/2 cup coconut nectar or organic blue agave

4 eggs

4 egg whites

1/2 tsp. kosher or sea salt

1 tbl. vanilla extract

3 tsp. ground cinnamon

3 tsp. ground ginger

3/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

3/4 tsp. ground cloves

3/4 tsp. ground allspice

Coconut oil (for greasing the pan)


Bake approximately 2 pounds of sweet potato at 400°F until fork tender, approximately 60 minutes.  Cool and mash sweet potato.  Whisk egg whites to form stiff peaks and set aside.  Blend together pumpkin, sweet potato, almond butter, coconut nectar/agave, eggs, salt, vanilla, and spices.  Once well blended carefully fold in egg whites – do this in 4 batches.  Do not over mix in your egg whites!  Grease a 9×14 inch glass baking dish with coconut oil.  Pour batter into greased pan and bake at 350°F for 35 minutes.  When cool cut into 24 squares and enjoy!

I made fresh vanilla bean whipped (coconut) cream for the topping.  That recipe can be found in my cookbook Paleo Made Easy available on the right hand side of this page.

Paleo Double Berry Muffins v 2.0

7 Oct

Anyone participating in the 2012 LuRong Living Paleo Challenge?  The original version of this recipe was made according to the challenge rules.  Sneakily, LuRong changed their rules after the challenge started.  I don’t know about you, but I read rules once.  I read them, I know them, I’m good to go.  It is fair to say that once the rules are posted, they don’t change.  So thanks to a friend reading the rules more recently, I now know the most recent version and being a scientist I view “no baking soda or powder” as a challenge.  A challenge I can easily win 🙂  Here are my delicious strawberry raspberry paleo muffins with no baking soda and no baking powder!


1 cup hazelnut meal (can substitute 1 cup almond meal)

1 cup almond meal

3/8 tsp. kosher salt

2 large eggs

2 egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

4 tbl. coconut nectar

2 tbl. grape seed or canola oil

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 cup freshly sliced strawberries

1/2 cup freeze dried raspberries


Preheat oven to 350°F.  Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form (I recommend saving time by using the whisk attachment on an electric mixer) and set aside.  With the exception of the beaten egg whites, whisk together wet ingredients then stir in dry ingredients.  Fold in strawberries and raspberries.  Gently and carefully fold in your beaten egg whites.  Do NOT overmix!  This is what will make these muffins rise.  You will still see some egg white in the batter, that is normal, proceed to distribute batter into muffin cups (I made 16) and bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes.

Paleo Double Berry Muffins

1 Oct

I’ve been experimenting with a lot of muffin recipes that do not use baking soda and use less than 1/2 tbl. low glycemic sweetener per muffin and finally this one is up to my standards!  Others have definitely needed some apple or nut butter to top them with, but these are nice and moist!



1 cup hazelnut meal

1 cup almond meal

1 tsp. baking powder

3/8 tsp. kosher salt

2 large eggs

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

4 tbl. coconut nectar

2 tbl. grape seed or canola oil

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 cup freshly sliced strawberries

1/2 cup freeze dried raspberries


Preheat oven to 350°F.  Whisk together wet ingredients then stir in dry ingredients.  Fold in strawberries and raspberries.  Distribute batter into 12 muffin cups and bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes (took 23 minutes in my oven).

Paleo Apple Crisp version 2.0

27 Sep

My original paleo apple crisp recipe (found in Paleo Made Easy) is pretty great, but not up to Lurong Living Paleo Challenge 2012 standards, so I have tweaked the recipe!  Here is version 2.0 which got me a huge hug from a fellow challenge participant on the day I made it 🙂


Filling –

≤ 1 1/2 cups water or organic, nothing added, apple juice (depending on your paleo restrictions)

15 pitted dates

5-6 apples depending on size (I used Empire and Cortland), peeled, cored, and diced

1/3 cup unsweetened coconut milk beverage (this time I used So Delicious brand)

2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1 tsp. vanilla extract

Topping –

2/3 cup Earth Balance soy free buttery spread, melted or coconut oil, melted

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 cup almond meal (this time I used homemade)

1/2 cup ground flax seed

1/2 cup pecans, chopped

1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

1/3 cup sliced almonds

1/2 – 1 cup unsweetened flaked coconut (I measured out 1/2 cup then started to sprinkle in more)

1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon


Heat 1 cup of water or organic apple juice (depending on your paleo restrictions) in a 2 cup glass pyrex measuring cup in the microwave for 2 minutes.  Place 15 dates in the hot liquid then bring the volume in the measuring cup up to 1 1/2 cups with more, non heated, water or apple juice.  Let this mixture sit for 30 minutes.  Puree the date mixture in your food processer.  To the pureed dates add the coconut milk beverage, 2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg and 1 tsp. vanilla.  Place your diced apples in a rectangular glass baking dish and pour the date seasoning mixture over the apples, mix evenly.  For the topping mix together the melted coconut oil or Earth Balance and then mix in the remaining ingredients.  Sprinkle the “crisp” evenly over the apple mixture.  For added sweetness you can sprinkle one stevia packet over the entire assembled crisp (optional).  Bake your apple crisp at 375°F for 35 minutes.
If you LOVE cinnamon, add more, it is good for you!

Love a topping on your apple crisp?  Check out my paleo whipped cream recipe in Paleo Made Easy!

Paleo onion and sweet potato quiche

9 Sep

I’m just going to say it, I don’t like eggs.  Sunny side up, hard boiled, poached, deviled…yuck…I’ve tried, but have never taken a liking to them.  I don’t even want to be in the same room with someone eating a hard boiled egg, the aroma does not appeal to me.  Too bad, hard boiled eggs (the white only) are a great, healthy snack!  What I will eat are omelettes, quiche, and of course the scrambled huevos rancheros from my cookbook (equally good for dinner and breakfast).  Basically put stuff in it until you loose the classic egg flavor and I love it 🙂  The key to a great quiche, in my opinion, is the crust.  Normally an amazing buttery, flakey, delicious, not paleo crust.  I wanted to try to hit the slightly sweet note of a quiche crust, but keep things paleo.  It was a huge success!  If you’re craving quiche, definitely give this recipe a try!  It serves 8.


Crust –

1 1/2 cups hazelnut meal (homemade or bought)

1 large egg

1 large egg white

Filling –

7 large eggs

1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut milk beverage (today I used So Delicious brand)

1 sweet onion, sliced into thin rings

2 sweet potatoes (~ 1 pound total), peeled and cubed

1 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp pepper

Avocado oil

Coconut oil spray.


Mix together the hazelnut meal, 1 egg and 1 egg white until a dough forms.  Grease a 9″ glass pie plate with coconut oil and press the dough into the bottom of the pie plate and up the sides.  Use the heel of your hand to press the dough out as an even layer.  Dock the crust with a fork so it won’t bubble and bake at 375°F for 15 minutes, until it starts to become golden on the edges.  Remove from oven and cool.

Toss your cubed sweet potatoes with avocado oil to coat, season with salt and pepper and bake at 400°F until fork tender, 20-25 minutes.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, heat enough avocado oil to coat the pan.  Once hot add the onion and saute until the onions are soft but not yet caramelized.  If needed, deglaze your pan with apple cider vinegar.

Layer half of your cooked sweet potatoes into your pie crust, top with onions, then add the remaining sweet potato.  Whisk together the eggs, coconut milk beverage, salt, and pepper.  Pour egg mixture over vegetables in crust.  Bake quiche at 375°F for 35-40 minutes, until middle is set.

Paleo blackberry spice cupcakes

8 Sep

“Jesus cake” is a recipe that has been in my boyfriend’s family for over 6 generations.  It is a 6 layer blackberry jam spice cake with caramel frosting made every year for Christmas (you know, Jesus’ birthday).  This cake is amazing, so different from anything else I’ve ever eaten.  Great for breakfast as well as dessert, and the farthest thing from paleo.  I first converted this into a paleo recipe at the beginning of the year, and it was spot on!  With all of the controversy over what is and is not a paleo sweetener, I’ve re-made the paleo recipe (below) without any form of sugar.  That’s right, no agave, no honey, no stevia – none of it.  Not the same as the original now, but it doesn’t get any more paleo than this!


Cake –

15 pitted dates

1 1/2 cups boiling water

6 large eggs

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 1/2 tbl. + 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

12 oz (~2 cups) blackberries

1/2 tsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 cup coconut flour

1 scoop Jay Robb vanilla egg white protein powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1 tsp. ground cloves

Frosting –

15 pitted dates

1 1/2 cups boiling water

1/3 cup Thai Kitchen full fat coconut milk

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/8 tsp. kosher salt

Cake –

Place dates in a 2 cup (or larger) size Pyrex glass measuring cup.  Boil water and pour over the dates until it reaches the 1 1/2 cup mark.  Let sit for 15 minutes.  Remove and discard 1/4 cup of the water.  Process the remaining liquid and dates in a food processor until it is smooth.  Cook the blackberries with 1/2 tsp. vanilla and 1/2 tsp. lemon juice over medium heat for 5 minutes then process in a food processor until smooth.  Whisk together the pureed dates and blackberries with the eggs, applesauce, vanilla, and salt.  Sift in coconut flour, egg white protein, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves and mix well.  Distribute evenly into 16 cupcake wrappers in cupcake tins and bake at 350°F for 25-30 minutes.

Frosting –

Place dates in a 2 cup (or larger) size Pyrex glass measuring cup.  Boil water and pour over the dates until it reaches the 1 1/2 cup mark.  Let sit for 15 minutes.  Remove and discard all of the water.  Process the dates in a food processor with coconut milk, vanilla, and salt until it is smooth.  When cupcakes are completely cool add frosting.

Paleo baked goods do not contain preservatives, make sure to store them in an air tight container in the refrigerator or freeze them for a later date.

Paleo key lime cashew frosting for coconut key lime cupcakes

28 Jun

Key lime is a flavor I love in the summer!  Key lime pie, key lime cheesecake, and coconut key lime cupcakes!  The cake part of my coconut key lime cupcakes was perfected for Paleo Made Easy.  Don’t have a copy?  Click the paypal link on the upper right hand side of this page!  In Pale Made Easy I topped the cupcakes with a paleo (of course) key lime glaze.  To date my favorite topping on these cupcakes is my vegan key lime buttercream frosting, alas, that still contains confectioners sugar making it far from paleo.  Tonight was an attempt at a completely new frosting, using cashews as the base.  It is good and, importantly, holds up to a cupcake.  I made enough frosting for at least 48 cupcakes (whoops) so you might want to scale back.


2 cups raw cashews

4 cups water

1/3 cup coconut oil, melted

1/3 cup + 1 tbl. organic blue agave

1/3 cup + 1 tbl. key lime juice

1/8 tsp. vanilla extract


Soak cashews in water for 8 hours.  Cashews should now be plump and much larger than their original size.  Drain cashews.  Add drained cashews to a blender and blend as fine as possible.  Add coconut oil, blend until incorporated.  Add lime juice, agave, and vanilla and continue to blend until the frosting is as smooth as possible.  Spread onto cupcakes and enjoy.

I used a Ninja Pro 1100 blender.  There is still a bit of texture, but it looks very smooth.  If you have a Vitamix you will probably achieve a more silky texture than I can with the Ninja.

Side note:  Know any vegans looking for cheesecake?  Try putting this mixture in ramekins and freezing it!  Should make an excellent no bake key lime no-cheesecake 🙂

Paleo Thai Red Curry with Pork

24 Jun

One of my best friends loves to cook Thai food.  As a prequel to her plan to start CrossFit this summer she has been going through Paleo Made Easy eating an increasingly paleo diet.  The two of us teamed up last night to make a paleo version of her red curry, and it just happened to be her best one yet!  🙂  Since I had to go to the Asian market to pick up lemongrass, I decided to wander around and see what I might find in the way of paleo “noodles” I could add to the dish (not that the dish needs it).  I was hoping to find kelp noodles, no dice.  I did, however, find sweet potato starch noodles.  Figured I try them, so they made it into the recipe.  We decided to make this dish with pork, but you could easily use chicken or even shrimp or scallops.  The seasoning amounts listed below are not exact, we are two people who tend to season, taste, season, taste…until it is perfect.  At some point measuring goes out the window.  This recipe makes 10 servings, feel free to cut back if you aren’t having dinner guests.


3 lb. pork loin, sliced into stir fry strips

1 large (or 3 small) shallots, sliced

5 small (or 3 large) dried bay leaves

Kosher salt


Oil for cooking (coconut, canola, or olive oil)

1 – 1 1/2 tbl. freshly minced ginger

6 cloves garlic, minced

3 tbl. tomato paste

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

2 fresh tomatoes, chopped

2 cans full fat coconut milk (Thai Kitchen or any brand from an Asian market)

1 stalk lemon grass, cut off top & bottom, peel off outer layers, use inner layers only

1/2 – 1 tsp. cayenne pepper

3 tbl. chili powder

3 tbl. fish sauce

2 tbl. ground cumin

2 tbl. ground coriander

2/3 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tbl. coconut crystals

1/4 + cup organic low sodium chicken broth (if you wish to thin out sauce)

2 cups pineapple chunks

1/2 lb. asparagus

1 handful fresh basil, chiffonade into ribbons

Freshly chopped cilantro (optional, garnish)

Freshly sliced limes (optional, to squeeze over your plate)


Steam asparagus for 3 minutes, slice into 1/2 inch pieces and set aside.  Season pork with salt and pepper.  Heat a few tablespoons of oil in a large stir fry pan over medium heat.  When oil is hot add shallot and saute for 1-2 minutes.  Add pork and bay leaves and saute until pork is no longer pink.  Set pork aside.  Drain excess fat from pan and return to heat.  Add garlic, ginger, and tomato paste.  When fragrant add bell pepper and tomato and saute for 3-4 minutes.  Add coconut milk, fish sauce, cayenne, chili powder, cumin, and coriander.  Bruise the lemon grass by bending and cracking it (much like you would a glow stick).  Add lemongrass to sauce.  Add coconut crystals and simmer sauce 5 minutes.  Discard lemongrass.  In a blender (in batches as needed), food processor, or using an immersion blender puree the sauce until smooth.  Return sauce to stir fry pan and season with salt to taste.  Add pineapple, asparagus, pork, and basil and bring to a simmer.  Simmer sauce 10-15 minutes.  Remove bay leaves and serve.  If desired garnish with fresh cilantro and fresh lime juice.

For the sweet potato noodles: boil in salted water for 6 minutes.  Run under cold water to stop the cooking process.  This was my first experience with these noodles.  They look like glass, they feel like thin gummy worms.  They have zero flavor to themselves, so I ladled some of the red curry sauce over them, problem solved.  They were fun to eat and added an additional texture to the dish.

Paleo breakfast hash

27 Feb

Homemade corned beef hash is something two diners in my area are famous for, but paleo it is not.  Here is a recipe for a delicious hash that abides by paleo guidelines for whenever you are in the mood to make a comforting breakfast (or breakfast for dinner).


1/2 lb. uncured nitrate free beef bacon (or substitute uncured nitrate free pork or turkey bacon)

1 1/4 lb. butternut squash, peeled and diced (if eating this as a post workout meal you can substitute sweet potato for all or some of the squash)

1 onion, diced

1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced

4 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tbl. Earth Balance soy free buttery spread (can substitute avocado oil, olive oil, or canola oil)

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. pepper


Heat “butter” in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion and 1/2 tsp. salt and cook for 5 minutes. Add bacon and squash and turn the heat to medium high.  Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Add the bell pepper, garlic, salt, and pepper and cook until has is browned, approximately 5 minutes.

I served mine up with a bell pepper, jalapeño, garlic and chive omelet in a bag (recipe from my cookbook Paleo Made Easy).