Five Paleo Dinners To Cook Next Week #26

Vermont has been seducing us the last few days with painfully beautiful, powder-blue skies and hard, bright sunshine. It makes me want to walk meander all day, listening to the Jane Eyre soundtrack like I don’t have anything better to do. When, in fact, I have about a billion details around the new book that need my attention. But all of those to-do items are made far more pleasant by the rays of light dancing through the windows to illuminate my workspace—and every hour, I take a walk break in the fresh air.

It’s official: I’ve packed away my heavy wool socks, and it’s time to fire up the grill.

Goodbye, oven! Hello, gas grill! Here are five paleo and Whole30 compliant recipes you could cook  on the grill (or oven) next week, along with a recommendation for sunshine-y salsa and spicy-sweet snack to prove I’m not all-vegetables-all-the-time.

Dinner Ideas (Whole30 compliant)

caesarsaladCaesar Salad

Cookup Tips: You’ll need to add protein to this to make it a complete meal: grilled chicken or poached shrimp are both good options. (Use a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store or canned salmon to make it über-easy.) You can make the dressing, cut the lettuce, and prepare your protein in advance, then assemble before eating. When I make this on weeknights, I just skip the croutons, but if you want to make them, I recommend you prep the dough in advance, then bake them just before eating.

Recommended Sides: None required… yay!

Egg Foo Yong | meljoulwan.comEgg Foo Yong

Cookup Tips: This recipe is pretty much made from leftovers, so if you cook chicken, beef, or pork during your Cookup, you can toss it into an Egg Foo Yong patty with whatever leftover veggies you have on hand.

Recommended Sides: You can stick with the Asian theme and cook up a batch of Cauliflower Rice, or do a diner-style mash-up and make some Home Fries or Sweet Potato Fries instead. You can do prep on all the veggies for sides during a Cookup, then finish them at dinner time.

sbj_burgerSB&J Burger

Cookup Tips: This is another fast recipe that doesn’t require you to think about it until about 10 minutes before you want to make it. As long as you’ve got ground beef, some fruit, and a jar of nut butter, you have all you need to make this deliciously-weird (weirdly-delicious?) meal.

Recommended Sides: This tastes really great with Classic Diner-Style Home Fries or Crispy, Oven-Baked Sweet Potato Fries. You can prep potatoes in advance, so when you’re ready to eat, all you need to do is finish ’em up.

mideastdinnerGrilled Chicken | Baba Ghanoush | Turkish Chopped Salad

Cookup Tips: The chicken really does taste best when it’s fresh off the grill, but during your Cookup, you can roast the eggplant and chop the veggies for the Turkish salad. When it’s time to eat, toss the salad and let the baba ghanoush come to room temp while you grill the chicken.

Recommended Sides: You really don’t need anything else, but if you wanted to earn bonus points, you could make a batch of Cauliflower Rice Pilaf.

mexican_meatza-e1326835111538Mexican Meatza

Cookup Tips: The Meatza can be baked for the first time in advance, then just before eating, add the toppings and do the second bake.

Recommended Sides: This tastes really great Crispy (green) Plantains, or a salad with Cumin-Lime Dressing. Plantains can be boiled and smashed during a Cookup, then crisped in a pan just before your meal. The Cumin-Lime Dressing tastes fresh for about a week, so you can make that in advance, too!

Condiment (Whole30 compliant)

cucumber-pineapple-salsaCucumber-Pineapple Salsa

Cookup Tips: You can make this during your Cookup in, like, 10 minutes, and then spoon it onto anything you eat during the week that needs a little razzle-dazzle. It’s fantastic with pork and grilled chicken. You could also sauté peeled shrimp in olive oil or ghee, then toss with this salsa and pile the whole thing on Oven-Roasted Cauliflower Rice. This is also really good tossed on top of Plantain Nachos.

Nibble (Not Whole30 compliant)

almondbutterSpicy Almond Butter

Cookup Tips: This takes just a few minutes to make and turns apple slices and celery sticks into something special. You can make it with almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, or a blend! For more sweet treats, stuff a little almond butter into a dried date or spread some on a banana. (It also makes for a mean SB&J Burger!)

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  • Gayle says:

    Considering Vermont is in the same general climate as Michigan, you may want to unpack those wool sox. It can still hit freezing temps for another month.
    You’ve mentioned sunbutter before and I finally found it locally – WOW I really don’t want to keep it around on a regular basis. It’s sitting in the kitchen calling to me. So far today I’ve ignored it, but it seems early yet.