Do you ever find yourself making the same recipes over and over again? Believe it or not, as long as they are real food recipes, having some go-to meals to fall back on is one of the best strategies for staying true to your healthy eating goals. Especially when life takes over, as it tends to do.
Today I will pay special tribute to my ten favourite dishes, the ones I find myself making over and over again. The ones I no longer need the recipes to reference. If you’ve ever seen my kitchen — world’s tiniest workable counter space! — then you’ll appreciate why not needing a recipe book is so important to me.
In no particular order, here they are. Click on the link in the title for the full recipe.
I once polled our community to complete this sentence: You know it’s time to hit the grocery store when you’re out of … ? For me, it was a no-brainer — the ingredients to make guacamole.
High in healthy and satiating monounsaturated fat, we use this favourite as a dip for raw veggies, a topping for fried eggs (or even chicken/fish), and the base of creamy salad dressings. A dish of guacamole never goes to waste in our house. Even the kids are hooked.
Especially as the weather grows colder each fall, you can often find a hot crackpot full of tomato soup on my counter. My trusty immersion blender works wonders to puree this soup to the smooth consistency my family likes best.
Think you don’t like Brussels sprouts? I would urge you to reserve all judgment until after trying this go-to side dish (one that we probably make at least once a week). The fact that the Brussels sprouts are shredded (sometimes it’s just the look of these tiny cabbages, right?) and fried in bacon fat goes a long way to helping their cause.
Deemed (by me) as one of the most versatile foods in real food eating land, this low carb rice substitute can be used in stir fries, curries, sushi, pizza crust, or even risotto. With such a similar taste and texture to traditional rice, I have served this several times to unassuming dinner guests who never even noticed the difference.
Spaghetti squash can be used as a direct substitute in virtually any pasta dish. This “lasagna” uses both spaghetti squash and julienned zucchini in place of the noodles. Ground beef, turkey, or lamb have all passed the taste test in my house, along with an array of possible vegetable options.
We used to make our own whole wheat flour crust for Friday pizza night. This tradition was greatly missed when we started eating real food … until we discovered this version (and the cauliflower crust one, which is slightly more labour-intensive).
Missing that crunch? We have these crackers on hand almost one hundred percent of the time. I make up several batches at the beginning of the week and store them in a Ziploc bag or airtight container. They go well with regular or chipotle-mango guacamole, regular or tomatillo salsa, as well as cheese (for the dairy tolerant). They are a great additions to the kids’ lunches.
8. Egg muffins
More portable than omelettes and more exciting than hard-boiled, this healthy meal or snack staple is a favourite with both kids and adults alike. Depending on the ingredients you have on hand, you can make these real food goodies differently every time. Our favourite combinations are bacon and cheddar, salmon and dill, and tomato, pepper and goat cheese.
9. Kale chips
Much like the sunflower sesame crackers, kale chips fill a crunch void. They, too, can be dressed differently every time. For maximum simplicity, brush with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt prior to cooking. To wow your party guest though, try this Maple cinnamon spice version. You’re welcome.
Another staple in the kids’ lunches, this basic muffin recipe can be reworked for maximum variety. Raspberry dark chocolate, banana chocolate chip, and lemon poppyseed have all been tried with success.
I’d love to hear from you: What is your favourite real food recipe? Head on over to our Facebook page and leave a comment now.