Sweet Potato topped with Pulled Pork & Slaw.

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Whole30 prevails! I’ve been doing my best to keep our meal plan on the Whole30/Paleo train, and it really helps to have some resources that shed light on how to cook this way. I will probably do a second post on that since I have a lot to share in the resources department, but this particular recipe is a mesh of one from Danielle Walker’s new book, Eat What You Love and one from the Whole30 Slowcooker book. This meal is SO GOOD and seriously, it is super easy to make if you don’t make all the ingredients from scratch (which I don’t!) AND you can make this in the slowcooker or Instant Pot, and I’ll include instructions for both!

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Ingredients:
Slaw:
- 1 bag coleslaw or broccoli slaw
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 cup Mayonnaise (I use this Primal Kitchen version because it is Whole30-Approved)
- 3 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. celery seeds
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- diced green onion

Pork:
- 1 (4-lb.) boneless pork roast, shoulder or Boston butt
- 2 cups Chicken stock
- 2 cups BBQ Sauce (I love this Noble Made version)
- 3/4 cup hot sauce (I love this Noble Made version)
- 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp. paprika
- 1 tbsp. chili powder
- 1 tbsp. garlic powder
- 1 tbsp. dry mustard

Other:
- sweet potatoes (1/2 per person)
- diced cilantro
- sliced avocado

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Method:

1. First, cook the sweet potatoes! Pre-heat the oven at 400 degrees and cook the sweet potatoes on a baking sheet for 1 hour. Then set them aside to cool a bit.

2. While the sweet potatoes are cooking, prep the pulled pork. First, trim the fat off the meat. Cut the pork into 4-6 chunks and place in a a bowl. Add the paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, dry mustard and 2 tablespoons salt and toss to coat the meat well.

3. Pour the bone broth into the Instant Pot (here is the version I have and LOVE) and add the pork. Pour bbq sauce, hot sauce and apple cider vinegar over the meat. Secure the lid until it locks, select “pressure cook” and cook on high pressure for 40 minutes.

1. While the sweet potatoes and pork are cooking, prep the slaw! Chop the red onion thinly and toss in a bowl with the slaw. In another small bowl, combine the mayo, mustard, vinegar and lemon juice. Pour “sauce” over the slaw and toss until mixed well. Add celery seeds and toss a bit more. Refrigerate while you prepare the rest of the meal.

5. When the Instant Pot pressure cook is finished, quick release the pressure. Open the lid and remove the pork to shred the meat. Season with a bit of salt and pepper before serving.

6. To serve, layer 1/2 a sweet potato with pulled pork, coleslaw, sliced avocado, diced green onion and diced cilantro. Bon Appetit!

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A few notes:
- To make this in a slow cooker, increase the bone broth to 2.5 cups. Cover and cook for 8 hours on low, then finish the dish as directed.

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This is a great meal to serve a crowd. I recently served this when we had family in town and everyone was shocked at how healthy it was AND how good it tasted! It’s not often that you really strike the balance between those two worlds, health and happy flavors! This is SUCH a great recipe and I hope you love it!

White Pork Chili (a Whole30 Meal!)

Taken and slightly adapted from Danielle Walker's  Against All Grain Cookbook

Taken and slightly adapted from Danielle Walker's Against All Grain Cookbook

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This is my favorite recipe discovery from the past year. My sis-in-law Katie made this White Pork Chili for our family when I had just had Daxton, and it was the BEST thing to have during that cold month and newborn life. So I definitely associate this meal with feeling super loved and nourished. However, I happen to have a penchant for stews. I love one-pot meals, because they're so easy to make, and I especially love a hot bowl of soup. The original, paleo version of this recipe can be found in Danielle Walker's book, Against All Grain, however, I've changed it up to make this particular version Whole30-friendly. Don't let the lengthy ingredient list scare you - this stew is SO WORTH making. I promise you will love it. Omg I think I'm going to have to make more this week after drooling over these photos while I edited them.

Ingredients:
- 2 pork chops, grilled or oven-baked until medium done, cooled, and then diced
- 1 small jar tomatillo salsa
- 1/2 cup cashew butter
- 2 poblano peppers, deseeded and chopped
- 2 large sweet potatoes, diced
- 2 large zucchinni, diced
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 tbsp. garlic, minced
- 2 tsp. ground oregano
- 2 tsp. turmeric
- 2 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. paprika
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp. fresh squeezed lime juice
- 1 bunch fresh parsley, roughly chopped

Method:
1. Heat olive oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Saute the onion and garlic together until soft and fragrant.
2. Add the peppers, sweet potatoes and all the spices and saute for another 5 minutes or so, until the vegetables are soft.
3. Pour in the chicken stock, then add the zucchini.
4. Add in the rest of the ingredients and cover the stockpot. Return every few minutes to stir, as the cashew butter will need to continuously mixed in.
5. Once the vegetables are soft and the pork is warmed all the way through, this is ready to eat!
6. Top each bowl with a handful of parsley and a fresh squeeze of lime.

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There you have it! This meal stand alone beautifully by itself. If you aren't doing Whole30, you can add a splash of white wine to the broth. You can also serve it with some delicious baked bread to sop up all the savory goodness. Oh gosh, this is SUCH a great winter stew, I hope you super love it! Let me know if you decide to make it! xx

To-Go Breakfast Egg Bites (Whole30 approved!)

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Whoooooooooole30!!!
This is the 3rd time that I've done Whole30 and I learn more with each round. This particular recipe is a great one to have on hand for those busy weekday mornings when you need to grab something to-go quickly. I like to make a batch of these on Sunday afternoon and then have them for the weekday mornings. These are especially helpful for Stevie, because he is either commuting to Atlanta to work or to the airport to travel - it's really hard to do Whole30 when your work schedule is crazy! But having things like that all ready to go can really save breakfast/rush hour.

Ingredients:
- 10-12 eggs
- 1.5 cups chopped vegetables
- 1 cup cooked hash browns
- 1/2 cup protein of your choice (bacon or chicken sausage are my preferences)
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper

Method:
1. Heat oven to 350.
2. Dice and saute the vegetables until soft, then set aside.
3. Cook and dice protein of your choice. If I'm using bacon, I just kind of tear it apart, but if I'm using chicken sausage I chop it up into half-moons. Set aside.
4. Cook the hash browns according the the package.
5. Whisk together the eggs with the salt and pepper. I say 10-12 because it depends on how big your eggs are.
6. Spray a a 12-cup muffin tin with oil.
7. Layer in each muffin tin: 1 large spoonful of hash browns, 1 large spoonful of vegetables, 1 small spoonful of protein and then top off each muffin cup with the whisked eggs until it's just under the fill line.
8. Place in the oven and bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes. You will know they are finished once the tops are slightly browned.
9. You can keep in the refrigerator and reheat in the mornings in the microwave or toaster oven - these are a great way to start the day, especially on the go!

Notes:
- My favorite vegetables/protein combos are: 1. spinach, onions and bacon or 2. peppers, onions and chicken sausage.
- If you don't have hash browns, you can also shred potatoes and use that in place (a great tip from my friend Savannah :)
- If you want to make these non-Whole30 style, they are even more fabulous with less eggs and some half and half. You could use about 8 eggs, 3/4 cup half and half, and of course, top each muffin cup with shredded cheese. Let's be honest, they taste better this way.

P.S. - Looking for more to-go breakfast options? Check out my freezer-friendly Breakfast Burritos :)
P.P.S. - More Whole30 recipes here!
 

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Bacon, Spinach & Shallot Quiche.

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Christmas week is upon us! Hurray!!! This is the grandest, most delightful time of year and I am so excited that this week has finally come! What celebratory things do you have planned?!

I'll admit, I am still working with a mile-long to-do list. My unordered Christmas cards will have to become New Years cards. My pantry is empty. I could use a good house cleaning (okay, scrubbing/dusting and while you're at it, a fresh coat of paint would be great). After spending the past week goofing off in NYC, I got behind on a few things here on the home front. But it's the most wonderful time of year so I'll just prioritize what needs to happen and let go of the rest of the expectations. This time of year can really eat you alive with all the busyness - my thing over the past week has been saying no to everything else for the rest of the year. I don't know about you, but I feel maxed out, but in a super great way! And I want to preserve that great feelings and enjoyment without going into full-blown frazzled mode of trying to do everything. Doing everything well is a myth. I must say no and do a few things well. So pretty much any "thing" that comes up between now and January is just going to have to wait, because I'm at full commitment capacity. In case you're struggling with this, I give you permission today to let yourself say no to a whole bunch of stuff. Just do it. It will feel like relief, I promise you. Okay wow that was a tangent I wasn't really expecting to go down... but hopefully someone here needed to read this today! And P.S. I'll get a post up ASAP about our trip and all the fun things to do in the winter in NYC with kiddos. Ahhh it was the best. Although I don't miss the 25-degree weather.

Okay, so since it's Christmas week and we are all traveling or hosting or having meals and celebrations, I thought it was high time that I shared my holiday brunch go-to recipe. This quiche is easy and severely, dangerously good. I've been making it for years and I don't even use a recipe anymore, i just throw all the ingredients together and it always turns out well. It's not fancy or hard, but it's hearty and GOOD. My theory on this is that when you combine bacon and cheese with anything, it's going to be good. No matter what. It's just the law or science or something. Okay, here goes!

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Ingredients:
- 1 quiche or pie crust (found in the refrigerated section of the grocery store)
- 6 eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1 shallot, diced
- 5 slices bacon, already cooked and crumbled
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 2 tbsp. flour
- a handful of spinach
- a dash of nutmeg
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste

Method:
1. Heat a skillet over medium and add the oil.
2. Wait for the skillet to get hot and then add the diced shallots. Using a spatula, continuously move them around and give 1-3 minutes to soften.
3. Then add the crumbled bacon and spinach. Allow this mixture to cook with the onions for about 1 more minute. Once the spinach has just wilted, remove the pan from the heat. Put this mixture into a small bowl and set aside to cool.
4. Go ahead and whisk together the eggs and milk. Add a light dusting of salt, pepper and nutmeg, then set mixture aside.
5. Add the 2 tbsp. of flour to the bacon-spinach-shallot mixture, combine until everything is coated with flour.
6. Place the quiche crust inside a round glass Pyrex, pressing it into the pan.
7. Add the bacon-spinach-shallot mixture to the center of the quiche crust, then I spread it out evenly. Add the cheese and stir until everything looks consistent.
8. Pour the egg/milk mixture into the center of the quiche.
9. Bake on 375 degrees for about 35 minutes. Once a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean, your quiche is ready to be devoured!

Bon Appetit, friends!

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Notes:
- The baking time is extremely approximate. Just keep checking - it might be perfect or it might still need 10-15 more minutes to fully cook. Every oven, climate, and therefore quiche is different.
- If you feel like your crust is browning too quickly, you can loosely cover the entire quiche with some tinfoil. This keeps the crust from cooking faster than the contents.
- Don't have shallots? Use an onion! Don't have bacon? This is awesome with sausage, too. The other delicious twist on this recipe calls for sausage, mushroom and rosemary (so savory!).

I hope you enjoy whipping this up for your loved ones! And yourself. Tag a sista if you decide to make this - @oykristen. And I hope you have the MERRIEST CHRISTMAS WEEK!!! May the wrapping/laughing/egg-nogging be ever in your favor. xx

p.s. - how do you like my new kitchen breakfast table? Travis McAfee custom designed this beauty - he is a true genius craftsman extraordinaire and me and Stevie are LOVING IT. This table has brought our little family together in the kitchen and it's really been the perfect addition to our home. If you're interested, here is Travis' info - he makes everything from wooden wallets to custom projects. If you get in touch, let him know I sent you!

Almond Butter Energy "Milkshake" (Whole30 Compliant!)

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During Whole30, you aren't really supposed to indulge in anything sweet. In fact, the whole purpose of Whole30 is to "slay the sugar dragon", and detox your body from it's incessant desire for sugar. But if I hadn't made a few gateway "treats", I wouldn't have survived Whole30 either time I did it. This little recipe is a great trick to have up your sleeve if you're jonesing for something indulgent or seriously need a snack, especially if you're breastfeeding and need the extra calories and energy! All the ingredients included are Whole30 compliant, so it's technically safe, but be aware that these kind of snacks are sort of frowned upon if you're trying to do the program as strict as possible.

But doesn't it feel kind of good when you bend the rules a little? I'm not talking about shoplifting here, people. It's just a pretend treat.

Go ahead, have a milk shake and laugh in the face of DAIRY.

Ingredients:
- 1/2 banana
- 1 cup coconut milk (from a can)
- 3 ice cubes
- 1 pitted date
- 1 heaping tbsp. almond butter
- 1 tbsp. coconut oil
- 1/2 tbsp. chia seeds
- a dusting of cinnamon

Method:
1. Combine all the ingredients in a high-powered blender and mix on high until completely combined and smooth. The consistency should be thick and creamy, just like a milkshake. Makes one large glass or two smaller servings.

Go on with your bad self. Happy Whole30 to you!

P.S. - My 3 year old took this photo of me. He's either getting really good or he really wanted that milkshake, which I gave to him immediately after we photographed it ;) Treats for everyone!

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P.S. - Looking for more Whole30 meals ideas? Check out my quick reference meal guide to my tried-and-true favorites!