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Today’s Paleo menu theme is comfort food. I know I had reservations with all of my diet changes because my first thought is “I will have nothing to eat!” Cooking and eating is a huge part of my life, so I couldn’t accept diet changes without tasty food.
The first new recipe I look for when working with diet changes is pancakes. It might seem funny to you, but I love traditions and pancakes are an ingrained part of my family’s week.
Dan started the tradition of pancakes on Saturdays during our days of making fresh sourdough bread. He would save the leftover starter all week and make sourdough pancakes on Saturday morning. He would make a HUGE stack of tangy, springy pancakes each and every Saturday. There would be enough for several more breakfasts for the boys and I to enjoy throughout the next week. My mouth is watering just thinking of it!
I am always so sad to lose recipes I (we) love. Pancakes in particular because of this Saturday morning tradition. We can’t be without pancakes on Saturday morning! When dairy and oats were still a part of our diet, we would make these Oatmeal Yogurt Pancakes. Our most recent favorite that are Paleo-friendly are the Fluffy Pancakes in Against All Grain Meals Made Simple cookbook.
So without further ado, let me show you some delicious comfort foods that are Paleo-friendly!
Breakfast – pancakes (similar) and sausage links
I make our pancakes plain or mix in blueberries or chocolate chips. We top ours with any combination of sliced bananas, almond butter, strawberry freezer jam, maple syrup, and nuts.
For my plate, I limit my pancakes to 3, and I do not use maple syrup. As a Type 1 diabetic, I do need to watch my carbohydrate intake, and this meal pushes the limits of my carb load for one meal. I try to be active on Saturday mornings to help my body burn off this meal. By active, I mean I do some laundry and light cleaning, not cross-fit or anything. 🙂
Lunch – Taco Bowls
Pan fry cubed sweet potatoes in oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, cook until soft. Brown ground beef in a pan, sprinkle with taco seasoning (This is a good one, omit cornstarch to be Paleo compliant.). Assemble bowls: sweet potatoes, taco meat, salsa, avocado, diced tomatoes, and Chipotle Ranch Dip.
The Chipotle Ranch Dip is killer. You need to try it. We’ve been putting it on everything, including my latest carb-free snack: chicharrones!
Dinner – Meatloaf over Cauliflower-Parsnip Mash with Roasted Garlic and Green Beans
Confession: I love meatloaf. I’m sure I complained about it as a kid, but I L-O-V-E it now!
This is my favorite meal to put together quickly (if the meat is thawed, of course!). Quickly mix the meat and seasoning together, and while that bakes, I cook and mash the root veggies. About 5 minutes before mealtime, I put some frozen green beans from Costco in a saucepan with a splash of water. I cook on medium until warmed through. Drain the beans then drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
I serve the meatloaf on top of the mashed root vegetables. I find the peppery tang of parsnips to be a great pairing with meatloaf. I’d even venture to say I prefer this combo to regular mashed potatoes. Gasp! It has so much more flavor and character than regular white mashed potatoes!
This menu is a testament that you can enjoy your old favorites even when your diet changes. A little creative thinking and planning and you will find yourself continuing to enjoy the same foods you always have!
Have you tried any crazy remakes that you ended up liking more than the real thing? (Cauliflower rice? Cashew cream? Nutritional yeast? Flax seed eggs? etc.)
These look amazing! I’m gonna go carb free in March, so this is a great starting point
Thanks! What is your motivation for going carb-free, if you don’t mind me asking?