The key to a successful month commiting to the requirements of Whole 30 is to set the goal with friends, a family member and your spouse/significant other.
Last January, my womans small group and a close friend of mine, Ashley, committed to trying Whole 30. For some it was the first time ever and for others, it wasn’t. Ashley really helped me to kick things off with a bang because she’s one heck of a meal planner, including planning for left overs from dinners, and had recently completed Whole 30 so had so many recipe recommendations.
It’s my hope that this can be a resource for you if you’re considering to do Whole 30. Pinterest can be overwhelming with ideas, all of which require different ingredients. My list of favorite recipes will help to streamline your meal planning and take the burden off of buying so many ingredients that can really add up.
It is important to understand what you CANNOT have for the duration, apart from no alcohol, grains, dairy, added sugars, other ingredients need attention when you’re grocery shopping. I’ve never known how much sugar was added to SO MUCH of what we buy. For example, meats, bacon, sausages, etc. There’s no need to add sugar to meat, manufacturers. Let me tell you, compliant Whole 30 bacon is so much better.
I benefited from this lifestyle and saw my carpal tunnel symptoms disappear completely by the end of the first 2 weeks. Most of the things you cannot have on Whole 30 are inflammatories.
Focus on simple ingredients you can cook with and should have as staples. This can be done for relatively cheap now that most groceries, including Walmart, stock them.
Tapioca Starch (optional unless you tackle the casserole recipe below)
Coconut Aminos (Trader Joes for less than $3)
Rice Wine Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar
Almond Butter (Costco – It’s also Peanut Free and huge in volume for $8)
Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
Compliant Salad Dressings – Primal Kitchen and Tessa Mae’s
Nut Pod’s Creamer – Vanilla is my favorite, Hazelnut is second. Can be found at most groceries now
I also recommend you buying TRUE ROOTS by Kristin Cavallari. I wish I had this cookbook prior to starting whole 30 because it has more than 100 recipes free of gluten, dairy, and refined sugar.
Below I’m listing out our favorite Whole 30 Recipes, 95% of them we have kept in rotation after the 30 day commitment where we’ve maintained an 80/20 lifestyle. (Holidays aside, okay?)
- Eggroll in a Bowl by 40Aprons
- Hands down our favorite Whole 30 Recipe. For the chili sauce drizzle, I use Primal Mayo, Franks Red Hot Sauce, and garlic powder to taste. (Thanks to the suggestion from my friend, Ashley.) I also like to stretch our money and find that buying a head of purple and green cabbage each will let you cook this meal 2-3 times vs. buying bagged cabbage.)
- Sweet Potato Hash from True Roots cookbook
- I substitute out the breakfast sausage and apple for compliant Chicken Apple Sausage (which you’ll find in multiple recipes i’m suggesting)
- This recipe is almost identical, just add 1 heaping cup of kale (stems removed) and cook until wilted as the final step.
- Chicken Apple Sausage Stir-fry from the kitchen of Ashley
- 1 package of chicken apple sausage, cut into slices
- 1 large vidalia onion (or yellow), sliced
- 1-2 bell peppers
- 1 tbsp of coconut oil/olive oil
- 2 gloves of garlic minced
- Trader Joes Sauerkraut
- Add oil, onion, bell pepper, garlic to a large skillet. Cook until fork tender and/or onions are translucent. Add in sliced sausage and cook until warm.
- Serve in a bowl and top with 1-2 tbsp of sauerkraut
- Marinated Grilled Turkey Tenderloin
- 2 compliant tenderloins (1 package from Trader Joes)
- 1 tbsp of Dijon Mustard
- 2 cloves of minced garlic
- 1/4 cup of rice wine vinegar
- 2-3 tbsp of coconut aminos
- Add all ingredients to a gallon ziplock back, allow to marinate all day until grilling. Pair with Roasted vegetables, cauliflower veggie rice, sauteed asparagus.
- Loaded Veggie Rice
- Grate 1/2 head of cauliflower (After this is prepped, it can be frozen to make it easy to cook when needed in the future.)
- Add olive oil to a skillet with 1/2 bag of frozen peas and carrots and any additional veggies you may have on hand that are family favorites. Cook for 5-8 minutes then add in grated cauliflower.
- Season with minced garlic, seasalt and pepper.
- Add protein – either cooked shrimp or leftover turkey tenderloin
- Chicken & Broccoli Casserole
- Orange Chicken Meatballs
- Chicken Fajitas – in lettuce boats or over Salad – From my kitchen
- 6 chicken tenderloins, sliced thin
- 1 large onion sliced
- 1-2 Bell Peppers sliced (we like to use 1 green and 1 red)
- For Fajita Seasoning:
- Mix 2 tbsp of olive oil, 1 tbsp of chili powder, 1 tsp of cumin, 2 cloves of minced garlic, a few shakes of chili pepper flakes, a few shakes of paprika, sea salt and pepper, mix in a bowl and add to a skillet of all ingredients mentioned above. Cover and simmer on med-low until chicken is cooked thoroughly.
- Meanwhile, make my famous guac.
- 2 ripe avocados
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1-2 cloves of garlic
- Sea Salt to taste
- Fresh Cilantro – Mix and mash all ingredients until blended.
- Serve fajita mix in salad boats or over a bed of mixed greens and top with fresh guac and fresh cilantro
- BBQ – From the kitchen of Ashley
- Kirkland pulled pork (it’s compliant), top with Tessa Mae’s BBQ Sauce
- Slaw mix from Trader Joes – mix with vinegar, Primal Mayo, and seasoning to taste
- Top bbq with slaw
- Serve alongside roasted diced sweet potato
- Breakfast Casserole
- 6-7 eggs
- Handful of spinach
- Bell pepper & Onion for a Western Style (top with Franks Red Hot and avocado slices once cooked…so good.)
- Any left over veggies you have on hand
- Seasalt, pepper to taste
- Bake in pie dish at 350 until center is firm. Aprox 20-25 min. Cut into pie slices and eat for breakfast each morning.
- Hardboiled Eggs & Prosciutto
- This one is as easy as it sounds for breakfast. Find compliant prosciutto at Costco in bulk, wrap 1/2 piece around an egg and enjoy. I like to top each bite with Frank’s Red Hot. (I put that ___ on everything)
- Coconut Larabar knockoff – You’ll never look at a packaged Larabar again after these.
Another tip, look at your family favorite recipes and determine if they can be made compliant with different ingredients. ie- My homemade spaghetti sauce can be made compliant by purchasing canned goods that don’t have added sugars and served over a bed of zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash.
Keep meals simple. Grill or bake protein & serve with fresh vegetables. Use leftover protein over a salad for lunch the next day.
Best of luck to you. I know you can be successful!