Whole30: The First Few Days

Honestly, detoxing from sugar sucks. The first week of the Whole30 are not particularly pleasant; I’ve already experienced headaches, restlessness, and extremely intense cravings (particularly when watching movies). Knowing that I’m going to feel much better in a week helps immensely with making good choices – particularly in a grocery store with Christmas cookies half off. 🙂

Cooking takes quite a bit of time, and the added produce consumption requires a couple of grocery store trips a week (I made my second grocery trip of the week today after gauging how much produce Tony and I went through from the first round). To save some time, it’s important to have a couple of quick recipes that don’t sacrifice flavor for functionality. Here are a couple of my go-to recipes for when I’m starving but really don’t want to plan and cook for an extended period of time:

Lemon Pork Sirloin & Mashed Cauliflower
Total prep to plate time: about 25 minutes

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Ingredients

One head of cauliflower
One can of coconut milk
About a tablespoon of ghee
One shallot
Garlic
Cayenne pepper

Lemons
Pork sirloin chops

Steps

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

Cover a baking dish with aluminum foil, put the pork sirloin chops in, add salt & pepper, and put slices of your lemon on top. Put the dish into the oven and set your timer for 20 minutes.

Remove the leaves from your cauliflower, cut off the stalk (which you can throw away or use for vegetable stock), and cut your cauliflower into palm sized chunks. Bring water to a rolling boil, add a bit of salt, and dump in all of the cauliflower chunks.

While your food is cooking, mince your garlic and shallots. After 6-8 minutes, check your cauliflower with a knife – it should be able to slide into the cauliflower easily. At this point, drain the cauliflower; add the ghee, shallots, garlic, a little cayenne pepper, and start mashing away. Add a little bit of coconut milk to your cauliflower at a time until you reach the desired consistency (I like to leave some texture).

By this time, your pork should be just about done. Remove it from the oven and let it set for a couple of minutes before serving to prevent all of the juices from leaving.

Taco Baskets
Total prep to plate time: about 20 minutes

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Ingredients

Ground meat (I use about a pound of turkey or chicken for every 3 people)
Tomatoes
Spinach
An avocado
1/4 of a sweet onion
1/2 of a yellow bell pepper
Any kind of hot sauce
Chili powder
Cumin powder

Steps

Put meat into a frying pan on medium heat with as much chili powder and cumin as you like (I use roughly a tablespoon of each). Cook the meat about three-quarters of the way (five minutes), add a little water (a quarter cup should work per pound of meat), turn the heat to medium-low, and cover to finish cooking.

Chop all of your vegetables into strips or chunks. Add a small handful of onions to the meat; remove from heat after about two minutes. Place spinach in a bowl, put meat on top, and cover with vegetables and hot sauce as desired.

This is super fast and a very easy way eat a lot of vegetables at once!

The Second Grocery Store Trip

Tony and I ate literally two packages of carrots in one day – they make a great snack to curb cravings. Though I believe the Whole30 plan doesn’t encourage snacking, I think it helps people who have never restricted their diet so drastically to stick with the program.

Today, we loaded up on produce that we don’t have a lot of experience with (radishes, dates, turnips, some kind of pepper) while making sure we had enough produce that could be eaten raw if we don’t have a ton of time to cook (kiwis, asparagus, avocados, pears, tomatoes, a pomegranate). I also wanted to make sure we had a variety of protein to choose from, so in addition to the tuna, almond butter, eggs, etc. from my initial grocery store trip, I picked up ground lamb, pork, and a couple of cuts of steak that I’ve never tried before.

This week should be interesting – it’s crucial to have enough variety in flavors and diet composition that this stays interesting until the negative sugar detox side effects subside.

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