17 Recipes That Actually Got Me Through Whole30
From someone who can barely cook and likes to eat.
The Whole30 program is an elimination diet that calls for avoiding grains, legumes, dairy, added sugar, and alcohol for 30 days — and last month, I did it.
Eliminating multiple food groups from my life wasn’t something I had ever really wanted to do — because, well, I love way too many foods and didn’t want to be susceptible to bingeing down the line, which can happen with super restrictive diets.
But when I started having some ~gastro issues~, my doctor suggested I temporarily remove certain food groups from my diet and then gradually reintroduce them in order to find out what was causing the trouble. We decided Whole30 would be a great way to do it, since the popularity of the diet meant there were a million recipes online, so I wouldn’t be left to my own devices to come up with what to eat in order to nourish my flesh prison.
That said, Whole30 isn’t for everybody, so make sure to check with your doctor before starting any meal plans.
Because of that, I can promise all of these recipes: are simple and easy to make
* don’t use any fancy appliances because I have a tiny-ass kitchen and three roommates
* require no outlandish ingredients, except for a few Whole30-specific things that you’ll probably be stocking up on anyway (like coconut aminos, which are actually worth it, btw)
* lend themselves well to meal-prepping and leftovers, since I only ever wanted to cook 1-2 times a week
* are tasty and filling enough that I rarely felt like I was being deprived of anything (except alcohol and dessert, RIP)
Here were my favorites:
Listen, I don’t mean to be dramatic, but discovering bell peppers as alternative receptacles for sandwich fillings was NOTHING SHORT OF LIFE-CHANGING. Using lettuce is fine and all but ultimately very messy without much payoff, whereas bell peppers are crunchy and delicious and also easy to assemble into yummy little chicken salad boats at work. YOU TOO WILL BE A CONVERT, I PROMISE.
Little Bits Of / Anna Borges / BuzzFeed News
This recipe scratched my take-out itch, because SHOCKINGLY, my Seamless habit was not sustainable while observing Whole30. Cauliflower rice, btw, is just cauliflower chopped or processed till it’s the size of grains of rice. Or if you’re lucky, you can get it frozen or pre-chopped at the grocery store.
Jay’s Baking Me Crazy / Via jaysbakingmecrazy.com
Harissa Shakshuka With Spinach & Chickpeas
Bring big flavor to the table with this Israeli-inspired dish. Cooking the eggs sunny-side up in a rich tomato sauce imbues them with umami, and a light crumble of feta adds a salty pop to every bite.
Dragon Fruit, Pineapple & Chia Smoothie Bowl
You can thank frozen dragon fruit puree for this vibrant knock-out of a bowl, and tropical toppings give it an I’m-on-holiday vibe, perfect for a chilly, blustery day. Want to make a vegan version? Use coconut yogurt in place of the Greek.