Hi there, and happy Monday! I had a neat opportunity to host the Autoimmune Paleo Instagram account this week, and as such, prepared only elimination phase complaint foods! If you're not familiar with the AIP diet, it's a diet originally pioneered by Sarah Balantyne of The Paleo Mom. It starts with the basic paleo template but then also eliminates eggs, nuts and seeds, alcohol, and nightshade vegetables, each of which has been shown to have a potential impact on gut health. By eliminating these foods (along with the obvious offenders like gluten/grains, dairy, sugar, etc) I, along with many of my clients, have seen a huge improvement in gut health, which translates to an improvement in autoimmune symptoms. There's a great overview of the diet here.
When I work with clients on this diet I usually recommend that they follow the elimination phase for 1-3 months, or until they see a noticeable improvement in their symptoms. At that point, we start to strategically reintroduce foods and monitor for any changes in their symptoms. Ultimately the goal is for them to be able to eat the most liberal diet that they can while maintaining their health.
Here's what I prepared for the week!
Breakfast: Cinnamon Ginger Hot "Cereal" // This is the perfect AIP friendly alternative to the classic bowl of oatmeal! My batch is inspired by this recipe from Eat Heal Thrive, and uses spaghetti squash and carrots as the base. I modified the recipe by using extra spices, extra coconut milk (my favorite brand), and half of the apple cider. I'll add in some Vital Proteins collagen peptides every morning for protein.
Lunch: No-Cook Spread // I have a variety of different things this week to incorporate a bit of variety! As usual, I have cucumber and radishes as my veggies, an apple for carbohydrate, and an avocado for fat. I have turkey for protein on a couple of days, an Epic bar for one day, and some dairy free cheese (by The Spunky Coconut and featuring my favorite Sari Foods Nutritional Yeast) and pâté (chicken livers from US Wellness Meats) on the others! I'll put the pâté recipe below!
Dinner: Coconut and Plantain Chip Crusted Chicken with Assorted Roasted Veggies // This chicken is the AIP version of the one that I posted on the US Wellness site as their featured chef this month! For veggies, I picked up several different types (cauli rice, zucchini, yellow squash, asparagus, sweet potato) and mixed and matched for the week! I'll put the chicken recipe below.
Snacks: Gut Healing Gummies and Carob Bites // For the carob bites, all I did was mix one part carob with two parts coconut butter until smooth! I also turned a portion of this mixture into a bark with dried cranberries and coconut on top which was so much more delicious that I even imagined! I made this batch with Eating Evolved roasted coconut butter, which definitely added some depth of flavor. If you order online, use the code "traceygmt" for a free gift with your order!
Chicken Liver Pâté
-1 yellow onion, diced
-1# chicken raw chicken liver
-6 cloves of garlic, minced
-1 tbsp coconut oil
-2 tsp each: dried sage, dried oregano, dried rosemary (or use fresh if you have it!)
-1 tsp salt (I like @redmondrealsalt)
-2-3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
-2-3 tbsp coconut oil
1. Caramelize the onion in 1 tbsp coconut oil, then add in the garlic and cook for 1 additional minute.
2. Add in the chicken livers and cook until no longer pink.
3. Transfer the cooked chicken liver to a food processor and add all other ingredients.
4. Process until completely smooth, then transfer to small jars. Top each jar off with 1 tsp coconut oil to seal the top.
I like to make a batch of this each month and freeze the jars to pull out when I want them!
Coconut and Plantain Chip Crusted Chicken Tenders:
-1 cup shredded coconut (I buy mine from Trader Joes!)
-1 large handful plantain chips (Inka brand is compliant)
-1 tsp salt (I like @redmondrealsalt)
-2 tsp garlic powder
-1.5# chicken breasts
-1/2 cup coconut milk
1. Add the plantain chips to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until chopped into small pieces. Add the shredded coconut, salt, and garlic powder and process until you achieve the texture of breadcrumbs.
2. Cut the chicken breasts into 1" pieces and pour the coconut milk into a small bowl.
3. Dip each chicken nugget into the coconut milk, then coat with the plantain and coconut mixture. Place each piece on a parchment lined baking sheet.
4. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes until internal temperature reaches 165.
Have you been curious about giving the AIP diet a try? Here's a meal plan to make it happen! It really can be super simple. My quick go-to's are a breakfast hash with ground meat and veggies, a no cook lunch with raw veggies, fruit, and deli turkey, and a dinner of a soup or something like roasted meat and veggies. Easy peasy!
Have a great week!