CREAMY SPICED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP [VEGAN, PALEO, WHOLE30]

CREAMY SPICED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP

Creamy Spiced Butternut Squash Soup  – the perfect warming meal for our bellies and hearts in the middle of winter. The weather has sure made a turn for the cooler and cooler days, let alone nights. The last of the kale has finally come out of the garden in fears that it won’t survive! But for this recipe, won’t be featuring kale as the star. Warming spices are the ones that shine through here.

It’s full of warmth and just enough kick – with ginger, turmeric, jalapeno & garlic among a few others. Easy to throw together and cook in the same pot you will blend, if you are using an immersion blender. If you’re shopping for one, find my favorite on my list here.  Although I love to roast my veggies for eating as sides and for soups, sometimes it’s just so much easier to boil and then blend away.

Everyone has a love affair with tossing some toasted pumpkin seeds on top of soups, but I decided to add in some great beta glucans, also known as prebiotics, with added shiitakes in my topping mix here, too. Just enough bite to a creamy bowl of soup. Hope this soup warms you up as much as it does me.

CREAMY SPICED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP

CREAMY SPICED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP

Ingredients

    For the soup:
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled & cubed
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 carrots, diced
  • 4 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 green apple, quartered
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 inch ginger, minced
  • 1 jalapeño, deseeded & minced
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tbsp smoked paprika powder
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 can coconut cream
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • For the topping (optional):
  • 1 8oz package shiitake mushrooms, sliced into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsp avocado oil]
  • Sea salt to taste

Instructions

    For the soup:
  1. Heat up a skillet & the avocado oil. Toss in the onion and brown for 5 minutes. Add in the garlic, ginger & jalapeño and continue to cook for another two minutes. Add the butternut squash, carrots, celery & apple. Top with the spices and salt & pepper and stir. Pour the bone broth on top, toss in the rosemary and thyme, cover & let boil. Once it boils turn the heat down to a simmer & let the vegetables cook until fork tender.
  2. Once done, take out the rosemary & thyme and discard. Add in the coconut cream and mix in.
  3. Grab your immersion blender, or regular blender and blend the soup into a thick, creamy consistency. (You may need to do it in batches if using a blender.)
  4. Serve warm with topping, if making, or some more coconut cream.
  5. For the topping:
  6. Heat up a skillet along with the avocado oil.
  7. Toss in the mushrooms and cook down until soft.
  8. Add in the pumpkin seeds and toast for a few more minutes.
  9. Add salt to taste.
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CREAMY SPICED BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP

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CURRY CHICKEN & BROCCOLI, SPAGHETTI SQUASH CASSEROLE [PALEO | LOW CARB | WHOLE 30]

CURRY CHICKEN & BROCCOLI SPAGHETTI SQUASH CASSEROLE

What’s better than a warm casserole coming out of the oven? Of course, a warm pie would most likely be better, but we’re talking dinner options here. This Curry Chicken & Broccoli, Spaghetti Squash Casserole is at the top of the favorites list. Easy to make, healthy to eat, & also tasty! Three wins in one dish. Go on and try for yourself.

 CURRY CHICKEN & BROCCOLI SPAGHETTI SQUASH CASSEROLE

CURRY CHICKEN & BROCCOLI, SPAGHETTI SQUASH CASSEROLE [GLUTEN FREE, PALEO, DAIRY FREE]

CURRY CHICKEN & BROCCOLI, SPAGHETTI SQUASH CASSEROLE [GLUTEN FREE, PALEO, DAIRY FREE]

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 400F.
  2. Wash & dry your spaghetti squash, then slice it in half lengthwise. Clean out the insides of it. Toss salt and pepper as well as 2 tbsp of the avocado oil on top of it and flip skin side up on a baking sheet. Pop in the oven for 35-40 minutes. We're not looking for mushy strings, only al dente, since it will be cooking again.
  3. Once it cooks, take out of the oven & let cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 375F.
  4. In the meantime, heat the rest of your avocado oil in a skillet & cook your shallots for a couple of minutes. Put in the garlic and cook for another minute. Add in your chicken and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  5. Top the chicken mixture with the curry powder, smoked paprika, coconut aminos & the can of coconut cream . Add in the salt and pepper. Give everything a good mix and cook for a few more minutes.
  6. Toss in your broccoli in the chicken & mix well together.
  7. Get yourself a baking dish & then shred the spaghetti squash with a fork into the dish. Add in the chicken & broccoli mixture as well as the whisked eggs. Mix everything to coat the dish evenly.
  8. Pop the casserole into the oven for 35 minutes or until done.
  9. Serve with guacamole & salsa or whatever toppings sound good to you.
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CURRY CHICKEN & BROCCOLI SPAGHETTI SQUASH CASSEROLE

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RANCH CHICKEN TENDERS [DAIRY + GLUTEN & GRAIN FREE]

RANCH CHICKEN TENDER - Dairy, gluten, grain free

The thought of chicken tenders and ketchup sure doesn’t bring up images of a healthy meal, does it? I’m here to change that image! These Ranch Chicken Tenders are not only a healthy option, but also one that is dairy, gluten and also grain free! It will suit all of your friends who have gluten or dairy sensitivities and those eating a Paleo diet. Go right ahead – try them yourself.

Oh and hello to a new kid favorite!

RANCH CHICKEN TENDER - Dairy, gluten, grain free

RECIPE

GRAIN FREE RANCH CHICKEN TENDERS

GRAIN FREE RANCH CHICKEN TENDERS

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Toss the chicken tender pieces with the ranch dressing and set in fridge to marinate between 30mins - 2 hours.
  2. Take them out of the fridge.
  3. Beat the eggs in a bowl.
  4. Mix the dry ingredients in another bowl.
  5. Heat your skillet and pout in desired amount of oil to it.
  6. Once the skillet is hot, toss the chicken tenders one by one in the egg mixture followed by the dry cassava & spice mixture and put into the pan.
  7. Pan fry 3-5 minutes on each side. (Cooking times will vary according to thickness of your chicken)
  8. Serve warm with Tessemae's Ketchup.
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RANCH CHICKEN TENDER - Dairy, gluten, grain free

 

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CRISPY CURRY DILL CHICKEN

Crispy Curry Dill Chicken

There are those boneless and skinless types of people. And then there is me – all about the skin, the crispier the better. All about the bones – reused into a flavorful bone broth. This spatchcock chicken recipe is quick and mighty tasty. Crispy Curry Dill Chicken is how you get people to ask for seconds – if there will be any.

If spatchcock chicken seems intimidating, I urge you to just try it once – you might be pleasantly surprised at how simple it is, and also how much quicker your bird is ready to be eaten! For a well-detailed post on how to do it, reference The Food Lab’s post.

CRISPY CURRY DILL CHICKEN

CRISPY CURRY DILL CHICKEN

Ingredients

  • 1 4-5lb pastured chicken
  • 3tbsp ghee
  • 3 tbsp dill fresh or dried
  • 2 tbsp curry powder
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 475F.
  2. Prepare the curry dill ghee first by mixing the dill, curry powder, salt & pepper, and the ghee (you may want to melt it down a bit if it is solid hard, but most ghee is very workable).
  3. Wash and dry the chicken.
  4. Cut the back of the chicken out and prepare the bird chest up in front of you.
  5. Carefully separate the skin & meat on the chicken breast as well as the thighs.
  6. Once the skin is separated, stick the ghee mixture underneath the skin and spread around to try to cover as much surface area as possible. If there is leftover ghee you can rub the top of the bird as well as areas that you could not separate the skin from the bird - like the wings.
  7. Place the chicken on a lined baking sheet breast side up, tuck the wings under so they don't completely dry out while cooking. Pop in the oven for 45-50 minutes.
  8. You want the temperature of the thighs to register 175F and the breast 150-160F once done cooking.
  9. Take out, cut up, and serve while warm and crispy.
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Crispy Curry Dill Chicken

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AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

This past week I started experimenting with all of the autumn veggies that are coming into the season and created this easy Autumn Breakfast Hash Skillet. Have you ever had cinnamon with your eggs? I know some people have, I was not one of them, but I am now! That’s what keeps this dish as fall-like as it gets.AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

Before I dive into the recipe logistics, let’s talk squashes a little bit. I only became team pumpkin/squash a mere few years ago. Prior to that, it was a no go. Why do you ask? Well, mainly because I didn’t grow up eating those vegetables. And that just tells me one thing – it is so important on what you are exposed to in your little years.

I know that I had to convince my mom to try squashes after I fell in love myself. And you know what, it wasn’t hard. She’s always so willing to try what I suggest. My husband is still on the fence. He loves it when he just gets a meal served to him with it in it. But when he sees me make it, he knows that I usually use squash instead of potato (as in the instance of this skillet) and he acts like there may be something missing in the dish. There never is, once he tries it, he is always sold.

AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

This recipe uses butternut squash for the starchy vegetable AND apples for a twist! Afterall apples are coming into season now too, and it’s just a beauty. Nothing is better than a fresh apple off the tree. Also – team Honeycrisp here, anyone else?

The beauty of a breakfast skillet is that it’s a one pan dish – making clean up an ease. I love using my cast iron for the added mineral boost, but you can just as well cook this in a regular skillet, just maybe opt for a deeper one with bigger sides if you have one. Then dice the veggies and apples, sautee a bit, top with eggs and cook a little more. It’s as easy as that! Don’t fear cooking real foods – it honestly isn’t as hard as it may seem. And so many dishes can always be made easier!

AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

This recipe is simple, it caters to many diets too – if you’re paleo or on the Whole30, or even if you’re just wanting a healthier food choice than frozen waffles – this is your dish! Also as a side note, if on the Whole30, remember that your sausage needs to be without any added sugars – so check your labels!

AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

Ingredients

  • 1/2 medium butternut squash, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced
  • 2 medium apples, diced
  • 1/2 cup bone broth
  • 2 precooked chicken sausage (I used Aidell's Chicken Apple, as they don't have sugar - so if on Whole30 look for ones without any forms of sugar)
  • 1 5oz package of spinach
  • 1-2 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1/2 tsp cinammon
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 5 or more eggs
  • avocado to top

Instructions

  1. Start off with peeling and dicing your butternut squash. Then move onto the apples, carrots, onion, garlic, and sausage.
  2. Heat up your skillet, especially if you are using a cast iron as it takes a little bit for the skillet to get warm. Add in your oil.
  3. Start with sautéing the onions first. Once they start becoming a bit translucent, add in the minced garlic and cook for a minute or so until it becomes fragrant.
  4. Then add in the butternut squash, carrots and apple. Cook them a little bit so they brown a little and top with the bone broth and add in your spices and stir. Cover the skillet and let them cook down - about 8 minutes or so. Make sure to check every so often as you still want the veggies to hold their shape and not become mush.
  5. Uncover, add in the sausage stir again then top with spinach and cover again for a minute or so, until it wilts down.
  6. Crack the eggs on top of the skillet and cook to your desired firmness.
  7. Plate and top with avocado.
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AUTUMN BREAKFAST HASH

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KID FRIENDLY/WHOLE30 SALMON & SWEET POTATO PATTIES

Kid friendly whole 30 salmon and sweet potato patties

You will love this recipe because it has all of the health benefits from the healthy fats in salmon in a patty that suits the palate of a toddler. And what could be better than kid-friendly, healthy food? Oh yeah – the fact that it is a great for adults too!

Salmon – oh how I love salmon. What a rich and decadent fish! And what a great one to pair with my favorite herb – dill! Did you know that just 4oz of wild salmon has over 50% of the daily recommended Omega 3’s? And also over 200% of the daily recommended Vitamin B12! Now those are some great numbers to get from fresh food if you ask me!

Now let’s add into this equation the amounts of healthy fats that salmon contains – and then the amount of work it takes to grow baby/kiddo brains! In the first two years of a child’s life their brain literary triples in size. That is some MAJOR work happening. And Omega 3’s are to brain development what calcium is to our bones. Fish is one of the best sources of Omega 3’s out there in our food. And what better way to get it, then through actual real food!

And as adults, we also need to remember that our brain health depends on how we feed ourselves as well. I know for a fact that I like it best when my body is functioning well, my thinking is clear, and my memory is in good shape too! Enter the above mentioned healthy fats of salmon – and you are setting yourself up for success.

Kid friendly whole 30 salmon and sweet potato patties

Now, we all know what is beneficial for us and we can choose to eat it, whether we truly love it or not. However, if you’re like most parents you might feel defiant most days when it comes to feeding your little one. My son is 17 months now. And as with every other toddler that I know of – he is exerting some strong wills of independence. Sadly, this tends to really show its face when it comes to food.

What’s even worse is that us, as parents, we tend to get weak in the knees when our kids show less interest in the healthy food offered. And we budge and give in because it’s easier. And honestly, there is no shame in that. I give in – often. He eats bacon and blueberries half the time and rice cakes the other half.

But there are days when I decide to be strong willed too and serve him a plate of whatever it is we are eating. Salmon used to fly well on the plate, but not lately. However, most things made into a patty still go over well! Enter salmon & sweet potato patties.

You can serve yours over greens, or with a side of roasted vegetables and serve the kiddos in burger form if they so prefer. Or just as a patty with sides as well! Serve with guacamole for an extra oomph of healthy fats. Or try making a cucumber, yogurt & dill sauce if you prefer a sauce over it.

KID FRIENDLY WHOLE30 SWEET POTATO & SALMON PATTIES

KID FRIENDLY WHOLE30 SWEET POTATO & SALMON PATTIES

Ingredients

  • 1/2 lb of wild caught salmon fillet or one 15oz can of wild salmon
  • 1 large baked sweet potato
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 2 large pastured eggs
  • 3 tbsp dried dill
  • 2 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Oil of choice to pan fry the patties

Instructions

  1. Remove the salmon from the skin if using fillets and add into a bowl.
  2. Remove the sweet potato from the skin as well.
  3. Mash both of them together well.
  4. Add in the spices as well as the coconut and almond flours.
  5. Make a well in the middle and crack the eggs into there. Give everything a good mix.
  6. Wet your hands and form into patties.
  7. Heat up your skillet and your oil of choice.
  8. Place patties into the skillet and cook about 4-5 minutes on each side.
  9. Make sure to watch the pan, as sweet potato has a tendency to burn quickly, if you see that happening - turn the heat down a bit.
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WHOLE 30 CURRY TURKEY AND PORK MEATBALL

Curry turkey and pork meatballs

I have a slight obsession with Indian food. If I am going out to eat, I want it to be Indian food. And yes, now that I try to avoid gluten, skipping the naan is ever so heartbreaking – but oh so worth it. Not only because of the gluten, but plainly – I don’t need that many carbs in my life.

To then say that it only makes sense that I also have a slight obsession with all of the Indian spices is a bit of an understatement. I am highly uneducated in how to combine them best, but I have been able to find the combinations that work best for me. My favorite by far is cumin and the obvious curry mix! So, so good!

You are going to love these meatballs because they have the right amount of kick and flavor, and the perfect combination of lean meat from the turkey with a savory pork flavor. As an added bonus, no grains necessary to make them stick together nicely.

They are extremely versatile and can be paired with pasta, in a veggie bowl on top of a salad or even pan fried and put on some gluten free toast with the works! I will be sharing my favorite sauce to top these with next week. Stay tuned!

CURRY TURKEY AND PORK MEATBALLS

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

Yield: 20 meatballs

CURRY TURKEY AND PORK MEATBALLS

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 2 pastured eggs
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp pepper
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375° F.
  2. Toss all of the ingredients into a bowl and mix them by hand.
  3. Grease a baking sheet pan, form 20 meatballs and place on sheet.
  4. Put the baking sheet into the preheated oven and bake for 45 minutes. Depending on your oven, I would check them at around 40 minutes – with the meatballs containing turkey & coconut flour – they can dry out quite quickly.
  5. Once done, take out of the oven and enjoy.
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They are a hit at our house – even the toddler likes them! Which I might add is a BIG way to judge if something tastes good, as he’s one picky eater these days!