Looking for a healthier version of cream of mushroom chicken? Those canned condensed soups cannot compare to this quick and easy healthier alternative! The grain free and starch free gravy stays thick even after reheating and tasted great the next day.
Lately I have been experimenting with making Paleo versions of a few Filipino dishes that I grew up eating and between random scribbles on pieces of paper and relying on my memory to remember the exact measurements of each ingredient, I’ve finally decided that I will post them so that I can keep track of the substitutions I used!
This Chicken Afritada is a classic Filipino dish that has Spanish influences and can be classified as a thick tomato based stew. The ingredients from the original recipe are almost Paleo except for the potatoes, hotdogs, msg and soy sauce that are usually added. The key to making this flavorful is simmering the tomato sauce with bay leaves until the sauce is no longer tangy and almost reduces by half.
I ran out of sweet potatoes which I was planning to use instead of white potatoes but I loaded it with enough vegetables that it didn’t fell like it was missing anything!
- 1 lb chicken thighs, cut into 2″ pieces
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 1 bell pepper, sliced
- 2 large carrots, sliced
- ¼ cup frozen green peas
- 1 cup chicken broth (or bone broth)
- 1-15oz can tomato sauce
- 3 pcs bay leaf
- 1 tsp fish sauce (adjust according to taste preference)
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- freshly ground black pepper
- In a pot, saute chicken pieces in 1 tsp coconut oil over high heat for 1-2 minutes until lightly seared.
- Lower heat to medium, add garlic, onions and fish sauce. Saute until fragrant.
- Add chicken broth and bring to a simmer.
- Stir in tomato sauce and bay leaves then reduce heat to low, cover the pot and simmer for at least 45 minutes until the sauce is no longer tangy.
- Once the sauce has thickened, add the carrots, bell peppers and peas.
- Season with black pepper and add more fish sauce if desired.
- Cover and simmer some more until the vegetables are cooked.
- Serve hot and enjoy!!
One of my go to sources of protein is pork tenderloin. It is a very lean cut with virtually no fat at all and can be flavored and cooked in a variety of ways so it is a good alternative to chicken breast whenever we get tired of eating chicken for days.
To give it a little bit of oomph factor, this stuffed tenderloin is packed with a sweet and savory filling that takes plain ol’ pork to an entirely different dimension. Ground Italian sausage flavors the meat well as it roasts in the oven and the sweet potato and dried fruit adds the right amount of sweetness. Slicing into the tenderloin reveals the wonderful colors of the ingredients making it a feast for both the eyes and tastebuds. Serve it with some roasted onions on the side to make it a complete meal!
- 2 pcs (1lb each) pork tenderloin
- 2 pcs italian sausage, casing removed
- ½ cup chopped sweet potatoes
- ¼ cup chopped onions
- ⅛ cup dried cranberries
- ⅛ cup dried apricots
- 1 tbsp coconut oil or lard
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Butterfly each tenderloin by making a lengthwise incision, taking care not to cut it completely in half.
- Cover with parchment paper (or plastic wrap) and pound it flat with a meat mallet until it is about ½ inch thick.
- Season both sides with garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.
- For each tenderloin, spread the ground italian sausage evenly and add the sweet potatoes, onions, cranberries and apricots.
- Carefully roll each tenderloin until the stuffing is wrapped up tightly and secure the seams with toothpicks or tie each tenderloin completely with kitchen string.
- Season the outside with coconut oil or lard and some more salt and pepper.
- Bake it in the oven for 35-40mins or until the thickest part reaches a temperature of 145F.
- Take it our of the oven and let it rest for 10-15 mins before slicing.
Its 14 days until Christmas and I am such a procrastinator when it comes to buying presents. D and I prefer to give giftcards or movie tickets since those are always appreciated and it takes the guesswork out of trying to figure out what to give a friend/relative, especially those that already have everything! I do make an exception for my godson Austin and his 2 sisters KC and Phoebe since I like to buy them something that they really want. After staring at different kinds of Skylander toys (there’s so many of them!), makeup kits and clothes I was starving when I got home and I’m glad that I have this Pesto Chicken Salad ready and waiting for me in the fridge. I prepared everything a couple of days ago and just mixed in the pesto and stuffed my face with it.
I had some organic basil but no pine nuts in the fridge so I subbed raw walnuts toasted in a pan for a few minutes to give it a nutty flavor.
I also added artichokes and sun dried tomatoes which I both love to make this salad extra yummy. Rinse the artichokes in cold water to remove excess sodium then drain completely or spread on top of paper towels when in a hurry. (This will prevent the salad from becoming watery).
- (For the pesto:)
- 2 cups organic basil leaves, packed
- ½ cup raw walnuts, toasted
- 2 cloves garlic
- ¼ cup sun dried tomatoes
- salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup EVOO
- (For the chicken salad:)
- ¾ cup pesto sauce *
- 1½ lbs chicken breast, cooked and cubed into 1″ pieces
- 1-15oz can artichoke hearts, rinsed and drained
- ½ cup sun dried tomatoes
- To prepare the pesto: Add the first 5 pesto ingredients and pulse in a food processor for 15 seconds. Slowly drizzle in the EVOO and pulse for 30 more seconds until everything is mixed together. Set aside.
- To prepare the salad: Combine chicken, artichoke hearts and sun dried tomatoes in a bowl. Drizzle ¾ cup of pesto (add more or less depending on taste preference) and mix until the pesto coats each ingredient.
- Serve immediately or chill in the fridge to enjoy later.
This dish right here is summer in a bowl! I know its already Fall but today I conjured up this dish because I wanted a meal that packs a lot of flavor, texture and heat. It is a different take on my traditional lettuce wraps recipe and uses the fresh flavors of pineapple combined with the smokiness of shrimp seasoned with chipotle adobo peppers, topped with the crunchiness of bacon. It was a flavor explosion in my mouth! This is so addicting that I could finish the entire bowl and head of butter lettuce
- 1lb raw shrimp, peeled, deveined, chopped into ½ inch pieces
- 1 head butter lettuce, washed and dried thoroughly
- 1 egg, scrambled, chopped
- 2 slices bacon, nitrite and preservative free, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 cup fresh pineapple, chopped
- ¼ cup green onions, chopped
- 3 tbsp chipotle adobo sauce *
- In a pan over medium heat, pan fry bacon pieces until crispy. Set aside.
- Add chopped shrimp, chipotle adobo sauce in the same pan and cook until shrimp turns pink. About 3-5 mins.
- Add bell pepper and fresh pineapple. Cook for 1-2 minutes.
- Turn off heat and add the bacon, chopped egg and green onions.
- Stir and serve in butter lettuce cups!
The month of October is synonymous to anything and everything related to pumpkins so I made some Pumpkin Spice Date bars as a post dinner sweet treat and a great pick me up at the end of a long day. This recipe is adapted from the Paleo Pumpkin Thanksgiving e-book that was part of the Harvest Your Health Bundle Sale.
For these Pumpkin Spice Date bars, I tripled the amount of nuts and used 3 different types since I like a nuttier consistency and added regular pumpkin spice in lieu of the spices in the recipe. Sometimes (well most of the time) I go off on a tangent and veer away from the original recipe but it works better for me that way
- 10 medjool dates, pitted and mashed
- 3 tbsp raw almonds, chopped
- 2 tbsp raw walnuts, chopped
- 2 tbsp raw pecans, chopped
- 1 tsp pumpkin spice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a bowl, combine mashed dates, pumpkin spice and vanilla extract.
- Add the nuts and kneed everything together to combine.
- Flatten into a ½ inch thickness, wrap in parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or until firm.
- Slice into ¾ inch pieces and enjoy.
- Keep leftovers in the fridge so they do no become mushy.
The original recipe can also be found here.
If you missed my blog post on Monday talking about the biggest health related e-book bundle sale, details are in the link below. (This promo is over)
Continuing on from yesterday’s post regarding the Paleo e-books from the Harvest Your Health bundle, here are 5 more with specific recipes that I have tried plus additional information about each e-book that will give you an idea about its content.
Don’t miss out, the e-books in this bundle will help you live a healthier lifestyle and is definitely worth the $37 investment! (This promo is over)
Paleogasm (by Camille Macres)
This e-book is packed with 150 recipes and takes your taste buds around the world with different cuisines such as Italian, Mexican, Vietnamese, Thai, Moroccan, Indian, etc. I’m thrilled about this e-book since most of the recipes are ones that I haven’t seen before! I’ve browsed through it 3x already and figured I’d try a sweet breakfast treat before anything else. This Banana Blueberry Muffins with Walnut Streusel enjoyed with a nice cup of tea was just what I was looking for.
Paleo Everyday (by Heather Connell)
An e-book that has a lot of eye candy, this will catch your attention from cover to cover. The mouth-watering pictures for each recipe will make you want to cook everything all at once! I particularly like how each recipe has tips for recipe modifications and what to do with leftovers. Recipes are categorized into breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks so it was very easy to navigate. To me since Fall is here, it is synonymous to a nice warm bowl of oatmeal for breakfast. This Paleo Apple Pie “Oatmeal” fits the bill and it got me going and kept me full until lunchtime.
The Grain Free Lunchbox (by Jolene Sloam)
Most of its recipes in this e-book are geared towards preparing healthy meals and snacks for kids lunch boxes. Lots of bite sized pieces such as mini burgers, nuggets, pancakes and more – all of which can easily be enjoyed by the little ones!
The Sweet and Sour Chicken caught my eye because it is entirely different from the Chinese version that we all are accustomed to. The ingredient list is short and I had everything in the pantry so I fired up my cast iron pan and started cooking. In less than 30 minutes, we had a piping hot delicious meal. So simple, just the way I like it!
Toadally Primal Smoothies (by Todd Dosenberry)
Smoothies are great any time of the day and I enjoy them once in a while when I’m too busy or tired to cook and want something quick. These primal smoothies are made with fresh ingredients and healthy fats without the protein powder usually found in most smoothies. I made a trio this past weekend since it still felt like summer in SoCal and we needed something refreshing. I also love how great they look with these reusable EcoJarz lids and straws! The recipes for the Pumpkin Banana Bread, Strawberry Cucumber Slushy and Green Power smoothies can be found here.
A Paleo Pumpkin Thanksgiving (by George Bryant)
Lastly, it wont be Fall if there are no pumpkin recipes and this particular e-book is solely dedicated to the good ol’ jack o lantern! These Pumpkin Spice Date Bars are the perfect portable snack on the go or a sweet treat after a hearty meal. I made modifications to the original recipe for a nuttier texture that I prefer. I will be sharing my version tomorrow so stay tuned!
Clearly the 7 Paleo e-books I have highlighted are just the tip of the iceberg and if you are interested in learning more about the rest, head over to the Harvest Your Health Bundle Sale website or click on the buy now button below to purchase this bundle! (This promo is over)