Paleo Nachos (AIP, Dairy & Grain Free)

Paleo Nachos (AIP, Dairy & Grain Free)

Paleo Nachos are made with tostone “chips”, flavourful ground beef, an avocado crema & dairy free nacho sauce. It’s one of the best healthy & hearty nacho recipes out there! Free of gluten, grains & dairy + AIP friendly! Enjoy them while watching a game or movie, or as a fun dinner dish!

Did you know, more and more research is showing that cattle, pigs and poultry raised on their natural pasture and grass-based diets yield meat that is lower in total fat and calories, and food that is higher in good fats like Omega 3’s. In addition, this meat more concentrated with antioxidants such as vitamins E, C and beta-carotene, and with increased levels of other disease-fighting substances.

Generally speaking, animals are not eating what they were naturally meant to eat. As more animals are raised by the thousands and packed into concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs), their natural diets of roots and grasses, grubs and bugs has been replaced by a standard factory farm food of grains, soybeans, King Corn and various advanced pharmaceutical products.

Good science shows that eating meat, milk and eggs from grass-fed and pastured animals will provide your body with more health-enhancing, disease fighting materials than industrial-grade CAFO-raised protein.

Therefore, you should consider sourcing out animal products from farms that have ethical farming practices–and raise animals on their natural pasture from beginning to end.

One of the farms I order meat from is Wild Meadows Farm in Grey County Ontario. Not only can you taste the quality in the meat, but you feel good about eating it too. I’m truly grateful for businesses, like Wild Meadows Farm, who put the time, energy and resources into ethical farming practices.

I’ve used their grass-fed ground beef in various recipes and the result is always amazing & delicious!

I highly recommend Paleo Nachos with grass-fed ground beef. This dish is made from whole food ingredients and is free of gluten, grains and dairy. It’s great for those following a paleo or AIP diet — or anyone looking for a super healthy version of nachos!

Paleo Nachos AIP Dairy Free

What you need for Paleo Nachos

Want more wholesome comfort food recipes? You’re going to love these …

Tostone Nachos

Paleo Nachos are made with tostone "chips", flavourful ground beef, an avocado crema & dairy free nacho sauce. It's one of the best healthy & hearty nacho recipes out there! Free of gluten, grains & dairy + AIP friendly! Enjoy them while watching a game or movie, or as a fun dinner dish!
Prep Time: 30 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 3 people

Equipment

  • Food processor or blender
  • Stove-top pans

Ingredients
 

  • 2 large plantains, peeled and cut into 1 inch slices
  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • Sea salt
  • Avocado oil

Avocado Crema

  • 1 large avocado
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 2 tbsp red onion
  • 1/3 cup light coconut milk, canned
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Sea salt , to taste

Nacho Sauce

  • 1/2 cup light coconut milk, canned
  • 1/2 cup sweet potato, steamed or roasted
  • Juice of 1/4 lime
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Toppings

  • 2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tbsp red onion, chopped
  • Black or green olives, sliced

Taco Seasoning

  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground garlic
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Instructions
 

  • Using a food processor or blender, pulse all avocado crema ingredients together. Set aside.
  • Blend or process all nacho sauce ingredients until smooth. Set aside.
  • Prepare all toppings and set aside.
  • Cook ground beef with taco season + 1 tsp salt in a pan until meat is browned.

Fried Plantains/Tostones

  • While beef is cooking, cover bottom of a large pan in avocado oil and heat on medium-high.
  • When oil is hot, add plantain slices and fry on both sides until golden (roughly 2-minutes per side).⁠ Season with salt.
  • Remove plantains from pan and gently smash until flattened (I smash my plantains between two pieces of parchment paper with a mug or can).⁠
  • Add smashed plantains back to the pan and fry again on both sides until golden brown.⁠ Now you have tostones, which will be used as a base for your nachos!

Assembly

  • Lay tostones on a serving platter and spread beef on top.
  • Drizzle avocado crema and nacho sauce on top then garnish with toppings. Serve while it's hot!

Paleo Nachos AIP Dairy Free

Espresso Amaretti Cookies (Paleo, Gluten & Egg Free)

Espresso Amaretti Cookies (Paleo, Gluten & Egg Free)

Espresso Amaretti Cookies are a delicious variation on a classic Italian almond cookie. Made with just 5 simple & clean ingredients. These cookies are free from refined sugar, gluten & grains. Only 20-minutes needed to make these delicious cookies, just in time for the holiday season!

Almonds and coffee come together to make a perfect flavor combination. If you don’t believe me, then you’ve got to try this recipe! These chewy cookies are not too sweet, with a subtle espresso flavour. They are a perfect bite sized treat with a shot of espresso!

When creating this recipe, I tried a couple variations (in particular, brewed espresso vs. ground espresso beans) to find the right balance of flavour and texture. I decided to go with brewed espresso instead of ground espresso beans. Although the ground espresso beans offered a more intense espresso flavor, I felt that the brewed espresso resulted in a more balanced cookie.

I also decided to make these cookies egg free, even though traditional amaretti cookies are made with eggs. I did this for two reasons …

  • To keep this recipe super simple and easy to make. You can literally prepare and bake these cookies in just-20 minutes.
  • For people who have an intolerance or allergy to eggs. In addition, those following a plant-based or vegan diet can enjoy these cookies.

You’ll find that the taste and texture is still awesome even without eggs.

Espresso Amaretti Cookies can be stored in an airtight container (to ensure that they remain chewy) at room temperature for up to 1 week. These cookies can also be frozen for up to 3 months.

Espresso Amaretti Cookies

What you need for Espresso Amaretti Cookies

Want more healthy cookie recipes? You’re going to love these …

Espresso Amaretti Cookies Paleo

Espresso Amaretti Cookies

Espresso Amaretti Cookies are a delicious variation on a classic Italian almond cookie. Made with just 5 simple & clean ingredients. These cookies are free from refined sugar, gluten & grains. Only 20-minutes needed to make these delicious cookies, just in time for the holiday season!
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 12 mins
Total Time: 22 mins
Course: Snack/Treat
Cuisine: Gluten Free, Paleo, Plant-Based
Servings: 30 cookies

Ingredients
 

  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 1/3 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3 tbsp brewed espresso, cooled
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 30 espresso beans, to top cookies

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350F and line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Combine almond flour, coconut palm sugar and baking powder in a bowl and whisk together.
  • Add almond extract and espresso to bowl and combine ingredients, using a spoon or spatula, until a sticky dough forms and holds together.
  • Scoop batter with a teaspoon and roll into balls. Place on baking sheet (1-2 inches of space between balls).
  • Press an espresso bean into the top of each ball until a cookie shape is formed. For a chewy cookie, don’t flatten the dough too much.
  • Bake at 350F for 12 minutes. Let cool then store cookies in airtight container.
Keyword almond flour, coconut sugar, coffee, dairy free, espresso, grain free, holiday recipes, Italian, Italian recipes
Butternut Squash Soup (Dairy Free, AIP, Paleo)

Butternut Squash Soup (Dairy Free, AIP, Paleo)

This homemade Butternut Squash Soup is the best you’ll ever taste! It’s simple, super creamy and full of delicious roasted butternut flavor. This recipe is healthy, filling, comforting, and warms you up when the weather is chilly.

Why this Butternut Squash Soup is the best

Simple Ingredients

I kept the ingredients list simple so the roasted squash flavor can shine through. All you’ll need is butternut squash, celery root, onion, garlic, coconut milk, chicken/vegetable broth, avocado oil & sea salt.

Dairy Free

I used full fat coconut milk instead of dairy-based cream, so almost everyone can enjoy this delicious soup, including those who are following a dairy-free, vegan, paleo or AIP diet.

Roasted Everything for Major Flavour

Most of this soup’s flavor comes from the cooking method, which starts with roasting the butternut squash, and other ingredients, to bring out earthy, smoky, caramelized & sweet flavor. Not only does roasting all ingredients make this dish super flavourful, but it also makes it super easy to prepare.

Serve It Now or Later

If you’re planning to make this soup for company, you can serve the soup straight from your blender. Or, make it the day before and reheat it in a pot on the stove. You can easily store this soup in a mason jar in your fridge for up to a week.

Optional Garnishes

This soup is perfect as is…no garnish required, but feel free to add a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper or some toasted pepitas (green pumpkin seeds) for extra visual appeal.

Roasted butternut squash

Squash roasting options

There are a few options when it comes to roasting butternut squash for this recipe. One is to halve the butternut squash, scoop out the seeds and roast the halves. Make sure to cut the squash from the stem down (lengthwise), so that it’s easy to scoop the seeds out.

The other option is to peel and cube the squash then roast them. I usually opt for the first one because it’s super quick and easy (unless you purchase butternut squash that is already peeled and cubed). BUT the option is there and the choice is yours.

What you need for Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut squash
Onion
Garlic
Celery root
Coconut milk
Chicken or vegetable broth
Avocado oil
Sea salt

Blended butternut squash soup

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Butternut squash soup

Butternut Squash Soup

This homemade Butternut Squash Soup is the best you'll ever taste! It's simple, super creamy and full of delicious roasted butternut flavor. This recipe is healthy, filling, comforting, and warms you up when the weather is chilly.
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 35 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
Course: Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine: AIP, Low-Carb, Paleo, Plant-Based
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Blender

Ingredients
 

  • 1 large butternut squash
  • 1 yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, skin on
  • 1 celery root, roughly chopped
  • 1 400 ml can full fat coconut milk
  • 1.5 cups organic chicken or vegetable broth, more if needed
  • Avocado oil
  • Sea salt, to taste

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Cut butternut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds.
  • Arrange butternut squash (flesh down), garlic, onion and celery root on the baking sheet. Rub the flesh of the squash with a little avocado oil and drizzle some on everything else. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  • Roast for 30-35 minutes, or until butternut squash is tender. Remove from oven and let cool slightly before handling.
  • Scoop the squash from the skins and place into blender. It should measure about 5 cups of squash.
  • Add the onion, peeled garlic, celery root, coconut milk, broth and sea salt to the blender. Puree until smooth.
  • If the soup is too thick, add a little more broth until desired texture is reached.
  • If the soup isn’t hot enough, pour into a saucepan and heat gently before serving.
  • Store leftovers in a mason jar in the fridge for up to one week.
Keyword butternut squash, celery root, coconut milk, dairy free, roasted, soup, vegan

 

Chicken Pesto “Spaghetti” (Gluten Free, Low-Carb, Paleo)

Chicken Pesto “Spaghetti” (Gluten Free, Low-Carb, Paleo)

Chicken Pesto “Spaghetti” is not only delicious, but it’s also a quick meal to whip up during the busy work week.

This dish is a great way to put fresh basil (or that batch of pesto you have sitting in your freezer) to use.

If you’re looking for a healthy pesto recipe, I definitely recommend my homemade dairy free pesto. I usually make a large batch of it at a time, freeze what I don’t use (ice cube trays are great for this), and defrost the pesto for dishes like this one. The end result is easy and delicious weekday dinners.

In addition to being delicious and easy, this dish uses spaghetti squash, making it perfect for those living a gluten/grain free, paleo, low-carb or keto lifestyle.

Spaghetti squash is great whole food alternative to processed spaghetti

Nutrition facts: spaghetti squash vs. processed spaghetti …

Spaghetti squash – 10 grams of carbs/cup & 42 calories/cup + mother nature’s nutrients
Processed spaghetti – 43 grams of carbs/cup & 220 calories/cup + a carb crash after consumption

I recommend replacing processed spaghetti with spaghetti squash if you;

  • want to lose weight (lower carbs & calories + more nutrients = weight loss)
  • have IBS or gut issues (since gluten and grains can aggravate symptoms)
  • have diabetes (lower carb foods = better blood sugar levels)
  • follow a paleo, keto or low-carb diet

3 simple ingredients for Chicken Pesto “Spaghetti”

Chicken Pesto "Spaghetti"

If you love this dish, then you need to try …

Chicken Pesto "Spaghetti"

Chicken Pesto "Spaghetti"

Chicken Pesto "Spaghetti" is not only delicious, but it's also a quick meal to whip up during the busy work week. It's the perfect spaghetti recipe for those living a gluten/grain free, paleo, low-carb or keto lifestyle. 
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 40 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: Gluten Free, Low-Carb, Paleo
Servings: 2

Ingredients
 

  • 1 spaghetti squash, medium
  • 1 lb ground chicken, pastured
  • 2 - 3 tbsp dairy free pesto, recipe link in notes
  • Sea salt, to taste

Instructions
 

For the spaghetti squash

  • Cut spaghetti squash lengthwise and remove seeds with spoon. Sprinkle flesh with sea salt.
  • Bake at 400 for 30-40 min (first 10-min bake with flesh down, then turn so skin is down for remaining time). Fork should pierce skin easily when squash is cooked. See notes for cooking spaghetti squash below.
  • Use a fork to scrape out the strands of squash.

For the chicken pesto

  • Using a stovetop pan, cook chicken over medium to medium-high heat. Use a spatula to break a part meat. Season with sea salt.
  • Once chicken is fully cooked, reduce heat and add pesto. Combine chicken and pesto until fragrant.
  • Place spaghetti squash noodles at the bottom of a bowl or plate then top with chicken pesto. Enjoy!

Notes

Notes on cooking spaghetti squash
  • Cooking time varies depending on the size of the squash. Check regularly to avoid overcooking the squash. You want the noodles to be ‘al dente’.
  • Time your spaghetti squash so that it’s done cooking around the same time as your chicken pesto, so your noodles don’t cool.
Get the dairy free pesto recipe HERE.
Keyword chicken

Chicken Pesto "Spaghetti"

Avocado Caprese Salad (Dairy Free, Paleo, Plant-Based)

Avocado Caprese Salad (Dairy Free, Paleo, Plant-Based)

Caprese Salad with creamy avocado is delicious and so easy to make! This salad is the ultimate way to enjoy fresh, ripe summer tomatoes & basil!

A classic caprese salad is made with very few ingredients–mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and olive oil. I decided to put a spin on this classic dish by removing the dairy (a common food allergen) and replacing it with creamy & nutrient-rich avocado.

Now this fresh Italian salad can be enjoyed by those following a dairy free, paleo or plant-based diet!

How to make a caprese salad

It’s real simple… start by slicing the tomatoes. Feel free to use tomatoes that are different shapes, sizes and colours.

Then slice the avocados, keeping them similar in thickness to the tomatoes. Arrange one slice of tomato then overlap with one slice of avocado around the outside of a plate (or however you choose).

You can incorporate whole fresh basil leaves into the layers or scatter freshly torn basil on top.

Lastly, finish this dish with a good drizzle of high-quality olive oil and sea salt or add even more flavour with a homemade dairy free pesto.

Important tips for making a caprese salad

  • Find the freshest, ripe locally grown tomatoes
  • Use a high-quality extra virgin olive oil
  • Use fresh basil
  • Find ripe avocados for more creaminess

Pair this salad with one of my dairy & gluten free Italian main dishes …

Caprese salad with avocado

Avocado Caprese Salad Dairy Free

Avocado Caprese Salad

Caprese Salad with creamy avocado is delicious and so easy to make. This salad is the ultimate way to enjoy fresh, ripe summer tomatoes & basil! I decided to put a spin on this classic dish by removing the dairy (a common food allergen) and replacing it with creamy & nutrient-rich avocado. Now this fresh Italian salad can be enjoyed by those following a dairy free, paleo or plant-based diet!
Prep Time: 5 mins
Course: Salad
Cuisine: Dairy Free, Paleo, Plant-Based
Servings: 2

Ingredients
 

  • 2 tomatoes, ripe
  • 1 avocado, ripe
  • 1 handful basil, fresh
  • 1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, or homemade pesto*
  • Sea salt, to taste

Instructions
 

  • Thickly slice tomatoes and avocado.
  • Arrange one slice of tomato then overlap with one slice of avocado around the outside of a plate (or however you choose).
  • Incorporate whole fresh basil leaves into the layers or scatter freshly torn basil on top.
  • Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt or use homemade dairy free pesto.

Notes

Avocado Caprese Salad Dairy Free

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice (Grain Free, AIP, Low-Carb)

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice (Grain Free, AIP, Low-Carb)

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice is a delicious grain free and low-carb side to any dish. The prep is super easy with frozen riced cauliflower (which can be found at most grocery stores) and pre sliced mushrooms!

Mushrooms don’t just add awesome flavour to this dish, but they’re also a great food to boost immune function.

According to a 2005 report published in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, mushrooms contain “compounds and complex substances with antimicrobial, antiviral, antitumor, antiallergic, immunomodulating, anti-inflammatory, antiatherogenic, hypoglycemic and hepatoprotective activities.”

To simplify, mushrooms can enhance almost every system in the body and protect you from numerous conditions and diseases since they’re associated with lowered inflammation. Sustaining high levels of inflammation long term has been shown to contribute to chronic conditions, such as heart & autoimmune disease, diabetes and cancer.

Note: Buy and eat organic grown mushrooms whenever possible since they’re very porous and have the tendency to easily absorb chemicals from the soil that they’re grown in.

What you need for this recipe

  • Frozen riced cauliflower
  • Sliced mushrooms
  • Onion
  • Parsley
  • Organic chicken stock
  • Avocado oil

 

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice goes great with …

Mushroom “Rice”

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice is a delicious grain free and low-carb side to any dish. The prep is super easy with frozen riced cauliflower (which can be found at most grocery stores) and pre sliced mushrooms!
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: AIP, Keto, Low-Carb, Paleo
Servings: 2

Ingredients
 

  • 1 12 oz bag frozen riced cauliflower, I get mine from Costco
  • 1 pack sliced mushrooms
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely sliced
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 and 1/4 cup organic chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • Sea salt & black pepper , to taste

Instructions
 

  • Saute mushrooms in 1 tbsp avocado oil for 2-minutes over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Add 1/4 cup chicken stock, cover and let cook for 5-minutes. Remove lid and allow remaining liquid to cook off. Set mushrooms aside in a bowl.
  • Using the same pan, add 1 tbsp avocado oil and saute onion until fragrant over medium heat.
  • Add frozen riced cauliflower and combine until slightly heated. Season with salt.
  • Add 1/4 cup of chicken stock to the pan at a time. Let liquid evaporate before adding more stock. Do this until you get through 1 cup of stock. Continue to stir ingredients as you do this.
  • Add mushrooms and parsley to the pan, combine everything together and let cook for another minute. Remove from heat and serve.

Cauliflower Mushroom Rice