The main thing is to check the ingredients of everything you buy and avoid all the fillers and junk. I was shocked how many things contain hydrogenated oils, wheat and various forms of sugar. The other big change we made was to stop serving a rice or pasta side with dinners and do an extra veggie. Also, we still do mashed potatoes sometimes but we've found other veggies that work instead for other dishes, like carrots and cabbage instead of red potatoes when we do pot roast. Oh, and I've also learned that any type of meat and cheese combo that I like on a sandwich I'll also like on a salad or just rolled up together on a plate with some olives and a handful of fresh berries.
Some of my family's favorites, off the top of my head...
We use almond meal as a substitution for bread crumbs and it works very well. DH makes killer chicken strips by cutting breasts into pieces slightly larger than bite sized and sprinkling them with seasoning salt. Next he mixes up equal parts almond meal and fresh Parmesan cheese (we buy it in big bags at Costco and keep it in the freezer), he puts some garlic and pepper in the coating mixture. Next he heats about 1/4C each of bacon grease (we buy nitrate-free bacon and save the grease) and olive oil in a big skillet. Dredge the chicken through some beaten egg, then through the coating mixture, then fry for a few minutes on each side. Honestly the best chicken strips I've ever had! He's used the same coating to do zucchini and eggplant slices and they were really good, too.
My kids' favorite thing is meatloaf. It took forever to find a good recipe and this is based off one I found on the "How to cook everything" app.
Preheat your oven to 350
1/2C almond meal
Blend the first 3 ingredients then add
1 beaten egg
Garlic, onion and pepper to taste
Blend a bit more and add
1lb Italian sausage (I generally use mild, although hot is good if you like some kick)
Dump it out onto a broiling pan and mold it into a loaf shape. Top with a few slices of bacon if you like. Bake at 350 for an hour.
It's ridiculous how good this soup is! The first time I made it we all thought it was a bit salty and had too much potato so the 2nd time I changed the broth to water ratio from 8/2 to 6/4 (using a good chicken stock instead of broth) and used 2 potatoes. It was fantastic!! I always double this now because it reheats really well.
I had a couple of favorite pre-paleo recipes (jambalaya and cajun chicken pasta) that I combine and call "jambalaya" for lack of a better word. I cut up 4 chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces and sprinkle them with Cajun seasoning. Melt a couple tablespoons of butter and sauté the chicken until it's cooked through. Add 4 andouille sausages (sliced into bite-sized pieces) and whatever veggies you like. We do diced tomatoes and diced bell pepper. Sauté that together for 5 minutes or so to soften the peppers. Next I add 1/2 tsp each of basil and lemon pepper, a few shakes each of garlic, pepper and hot sauce, and about a cup of cream. I let it simmer until the cream reduces and thickens a bit (maybe 10 minutes) and serve it on white rice for the kids (DH and I skip it) with some Parmesan sprinkled on top. I think shrimp would be really good in this but my kids don't like it.
This is fantastic cooked over a wood burning fire pit! We use tamari instead of soy sauce and leave out the sugar.http://m.allrecipes.com/recipe/100606/beef-bulgogi
Make burgers (we use 1lb hamburger, 1lb ground turkey and lots of seasoning) and then fix them however you like but wrapped in lettuce leaves instead of on a bun. We do burgers a lot in the summer and have them with fresh fruit salad - apples, grapes, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, etc.
Another yummy soup, this one for the crockpot. I use 4 raw chicken breasts and shred them an hour or so before we eat. I also leave out the corn and tortilla strips but add a can of black beans. Beans are mostly a no on the primal diet but I wanted to fill the soup out a bit. It's just one can, shared among 5 people, and we don't have it too often so I think it's safe. We put shredded cheese and sour cream on top.http://m.allrecipes.com/recipe/89539/slow-cooker-chicken-tortilla-soup
My favorite breakfast -
Preheat the oven to 400. Butter a ramikin (or use bacon grease) and add 2 eggs, salt and pepper. Top with some shredded cheese (I usually slice a piece of cheddar, break it into little pieces, and drop them in) and a drizzle of cream. Bake for about 20 minutes (sometimes it takes a few minutes longer but my oven is wonky). I like these simple but DH has added all kinds of goodies (they go in first, eggs on top) like ham, sausage, bell pepper, salsa, spinach, leftover taco meat, etc.
We buy a really good quality protein powder and sometimes when I don't feel like cooking I'll mix that up in milk and have it for breakfast or lunch. I don't do this often, and never for two meals on the same day, because it's important to eat whole foods but I'm lazy and I run the risk of procrastinating until I'm starving and then I'm too tempted to reach for the kids' cereal or frozen burritos
. The vanilla is really tasty added to smoothies, too, so that makes a good breakfast or snack.