Italian Meatloaf

Italian meatloaf

Well, the holiday season is officially over. It’s been fun, but I’m ready for some normalcy again. The decorations and tree are down, and the house is back in order. I’m usually a little blue after the holiday season, but I’m doing just fine this year. There are so many things to look forward to that I’m not too sad. I’m excited about 2015 and know that it’s going to be wonderful. It will be a great year because I’m going to make it great! Remember, that you choose what you want to create in your life and you choose your attitude.

On another note, I had to pick a new winner for the Paleo Eats giveaway. I tried notifying the first winner numerous times and allowed about two weeks for her to get back to me. So, the new winner was picked at random again and is Julie K. Julie left this comment, “I’d like to win this book so I have something tangible to reference when I’m at home, hangry, and about to go against my clean eating habits.” Julie, please email me your mailing address at Thanks!

Meanwhile, this recipe turned out even better than I imagined, which made me happy. It’s total comfort food and hits the spot when you’re wanting both meatloaf and spaghetti. It’s seriously the best of both worlds. We ate ours on a bed of sautéed kale with marinara on top and a sprinkle of raw Parmesan, since we both tolerate it. It was perfection.

Enjoy and cheers to a New Year!


  • 1 Tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 lb ground spicy Italian chicken sausage
  • 1 egg, preferably pasture-raised
  • 2 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 Tbsp coconut flour
  • 1.5 Tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • No sugar added marinara sauce, for serving (I like this one and this one)
  • If tolerated, raw Parmesan for serving, optional


  1. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Once melted, add the onion, garlic and mushrooms. Sauté a few minutes, or until onion is softened. Set aside to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Once onion mixture is cool, place in a food processor or small prep blender like this one and pulse until big chunks are broken up into fine pieces.
  4. Then, in a large bowl, mix together the onion mixture, ground beef, ground chicken sausage, egg, tomato paste, coconut flour, Italian seasoning, sea salt and pepper. Mix everything well with your hands.
  5. Place meat mixture in a large loaf pan and spread out evenly with your hands. Bake for 60 minutes in the preheated oven.
  6. When the meatloaf is nearly done, pour some marinara sauce in a saucepan and let warm over medium-low heat.
  7. Serve meatloaf slices with warm marinara sauce and garnish with raw Parmesan, if tolerated and desired.



Chicken and Broccoli Egg Bake

chicken and broccoli egg bake

Chicken and broccoli are kind of a classic combo if you ask me, and these two foods especially taste wonderful together in casseroles. Something with chicken and broccoli was calling my name recently and in deciding what to make ahead of time for dinner the other night (since Jesse and I don’t get home until about 8pm), I threw together this little creation for us to eat when we got home. Every single ingredient was already in my kitchen, which goes to show that you can create easy, delicious meals without having to run to the store. Unless it’s a total Mother Hubbard’s cupboard scenario, which makes for a different story. That’s what my mom used to say whenever she needed to go to the store and I find that I say the same thing now when our fridge and cupboards are looking a little bare.

Anyway, it’s good to be back with a recipe. Hopefully, I’ll be back again soon with what I’m making on New Year’s day. Cheers and enjoy! Oh, and happy New Year too!


  • 1/4 cup melted grass-fed butter, plus extra for greasing dish & sautéing veggies
  • 1 leek, chopped
  • 1 cup white button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 large head broccoli, chopped into small florets
  • 1 lb cooked chicken breasts, shredded (leftovers work great)
  • 3/4 cup homemade almond milk or full-fat coconut milk
  • 6 eggs, preferably pasture-raised
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a 2-quart casserole dish with butter and set aside.
  2. Melt a small amount of butter (about 1 Tbsp) in a large pan over medium heat. Add the leek and mushrooms, and saute a few minutes. Then, add the broccoli and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Continue to saute a few more minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Once broccoli has slightly softened, add the shredded chicken and stir. Remove pan from heat and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the 1/4 cup melted butter, eggs and almond or coconut milk. Once mixed, add the oregano, parsley, cayenne and sea salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Next, add the chicken/veggie mixture and stir. Pour into the greased casserole dish and place in the preheated oven. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown and puffy.
  6. Let cool about 5-10 minutes before serving.

Yields: 4 servings



Paleo Eats Giveaway!



Transitioning to a Paleo-friendly diet can be intimidating. You may wind up buying new ingredients that you have never even heard of before, let alone used– some of which can be pretty darn expensive. Enter Kelly Bejelly’s new amazing cookbook, Paleo Eats: 111 Comforting Gluten-Free, Grain-Free and Dairy-Free Recipes for the Foodie in You. Paleo Eats is way more than your average cookbook! She knows firsthand how tough going Paleo can seem at first, especially when bringing your family along! To help you navigate these waters and smoothly transition your family to this diet, Kelly has included a few special sections in Paleo Eats, including how to:

  • Go Paleo without breaking the bank
  • Find the freshest, “cleanest” veggies
  • Work with new-to-you Paleo ingredients
  • Rescue a culinary disaster
  • Stock your Paleo pantry

Recreate your own family-favorite recipes Kelly takes the scary out of this healthy, delicious eating plan to give you confidence in your kitchen again!

This book has a lot of fun ideas that would be great for special occasions and to share with others. Additionally, it has some good everyday recipes too. One thing that I really like about this book is the helpful tutorial and substitution list in the back. For instance, Kelly lists which ratios of almond and coconut flour to use as a sub for tapioca starch/flour. I love this because as someone who formerly suffered with SIBO, I have to watch my starches and tapioca starch is something I avoid. I actually never knew there was an alternative until now! She lists lots of other useful tips as well and of course, shares her story.

Check out this book preview video that Kelly made below:

Meanwhile, Kelly has allowed me to share her Sweet Bread recipe from her book, which I also tried myself. It is so easy to make and not complicated at all. I appreciate the ease of the recipe and the fact that the bread is only subtly sweet. My husband and I both gave it the seal of approval (we ate it warm with butter) and decided to freeze the rest of the loaf, and save it for a special Christmas morning breakfast (going to make French toast with it, another recipe in Kelly’s book!).

Please know, I made mine with unsweetened applesauce instead of apple butter. I asked Kelly first if this would change the recipe drastically and she said it was a good alternative. Also, my bread took a little longer to bake, but I think it’s because applesauce has a little bit more moisture than apple butter. If you use applesauce because that’s what you have available to you, please keep this in mind.

Anyway, if you’d rather just get to the giveaway, scroll all the way to the end for details.

sweet bread

Sweet Bread:

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: *35 minutes

Makes 1 (5 by 9-inch) loaf

  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil, plus extra for greasing the pan
  • 5 large eggs
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup apple butter
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 5 by 9-inch loaf pan.

Place all of the ingredients in a blender and mix until thoroughly combined, roughly 1 minute.

Pour into the prepared pan and bake for *30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for 15 minutes before cutting.

Store leftovers in the fridge in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days or you can freeze and defrost as needed.

*NOTE: If you have a copy of the book that says 20-25 minutes for baking time, this is an error. It should read 30-35 minutes. The publishing company is fixing this error for future prints.

Giveaway Details:


Want to enter to win your own copy of the Paleo Eats cookbook? It’s simple to enter — just comment below and tell me why you want to win this cookbook! The giveaway is open to U.S. only and ends on Monday, December 22 at 11 p.m. PST. One winner will be picked at random and announced Tuesday morning (Dec. 23). Thanks and good luck!

Pumpkin Spice Granola

Pumpkin spice granola

I’ve still been on a kick of making homemade granola and decided it was time for a fall-inspired variety. After all, tis the season for pumpkin spice, right? It makes the house smell so cozy and warm too. It’s actually the first time I’ve used pumpkin seeds in homemade granola and I must say, I really like it. The addition of the almond butter adds a nice coating on the coconut flakes, especially if you use a grittier, freshly ground almond butter, but any kind will work. In this case, I used freshly ground almond butter from the store.

Meanwhile, I still plan on filling you all in on my Jamaica experience sometime soon. I’ve been a little distracted though because last Thursday, we got a new 5-month old kitten! Jesse and I both felt ready after the loss of Mila and found a kitten on Craigslist that urgently needed a new home. Long story short, she was in a home going through a domestic violence divorce. We stepped in and rescued her, and named her Frankie. Here’s a picture of our sweet girl:

Frankie, our new kitty


  • 6-7 cups unsweetened coconut flakes 
  • 2 cups raw pumpkin seeds (aka pepitas) 
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1-2 Tbsp raw honey
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract (I like this brand)
  • 4 Tbsp unsweetened almond butter (melt slightly if it’s really stiff)
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • Dash of sea salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened dried currants


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Pour the coconut chips and pumpkin seeds on a large baking sheet.
  3. In a small bowl, gently whisk together the coconut oil, vanilla, raw honey, sea salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. Once blended, whisk in the almond butter until smooth.
  4. Pour coconut oil mixture over the coconut flakes and pumpkin seeds, stirring well to coat. Spread out evenly on the baking pan and then place in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove the granola after the 15 minutes and stir. Place back in oven for 10-15 more minutes or until all the granola is golden brown.
  6. Let cool almost completely and then stir in the currants.

Pumpkin Spice Granola


Ginger Pulled Pork and Veggies

Ginger pork lightroom version2

Well, I’m back from an amazing trip in Jamaica! Jesse and I had a wonderful time, met some great people and enjoyed lots of R & R. I will be sharing a little bit more about the experience soon.

Meanwhile, this pork…oh my gosh, this pork! I can’t even put into words how delicious this turned out. The picture doesn’t do it justice one bit (thank you Portland rain and gray skies for the darkened quality), but the flavor is truly impeccable. I strongly encourage you all to try this recipe. It will not disappoint.

I recommend eating the meat on top of steamed greens and topping with avocado slices. If you have cilantro on hand, throw that on top too!

Cheers and enjoy!


  • ~2.5 lb boneless pork loin roast
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red chili pepper, chopped (keep or remove seeds as you like)
  • 1/2 cup chicken bone broth, preferably homemade or water
  • 1 heaping Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Heaping 1/4 tsp dried mustard
  • 3 large carrots, sliced into large pieces
  • 1/2 large head red cabbage, chopped


  1. Generously sprinkle pork roast with sea salt and pepper. Place in a hot skillet over medium to medium-high heat and brown for 4 minutes each side (add a little coconut oil, if needed as well). Once done, place the roast in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  2. In the same skillet over medium heat, add the coconut oil. Once melted, add the onion, garlic, ginger and chili pepper. Cook for about 2 minutes and then add the broth or water, and tomato paste. Scrape up the brown bits from the roast and continue to cook for another 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add the onion mixture to the slow cooker, along with the sliced carrots. Pour in the coconut aminos, apple cider vinegar and sprinkle in the mustard powder. Then, add the chopped cabbage and season to taste with sea salt and pepper.
  4. Place slow cooker on low and cook for 7-8 hours or cook on high for 5-6.
  5. Once done, shred the pork roast with two forks or tongs and serve.

Spicy Sardine Scramble

Spicy Sardine Scramble

It’s only as of recent that I tried sardines for the first time and realized that I like the little suckers. I bought a tin of them a while back and had it in the cupboard for months before I decided to crack it open. I was kinda scared, but finally went for it. Since then, I’ve had sardines a couple more times and still much prefer to eat them in scrambles, as it mellows out some of the strong flavor. I can handle small amounts straight up with pickled veggies, but can’t finish off a whole tin like I can here.

Meanwhile, to fill you all in on what I’ve been up to — I just recently got back from a trip home to Michigan. It was a fun and eventful trip filled with my cousin’s wedding, time on the lake, lots of family time, reunions with friends, good food and relaxation. Now, in about a week, I’ll be heading to Jamaica with Jesse for 4 nights! I won a wellness retreat with ePhysiologix and get to stay at a topnotch all-inclusive resort in Negril, attend workshops, enjoy leisure time and network with other like-minded folks. It should be great and Jesse and I are stoked! We’ve never been to Jamaica before and Jesse’s never even been out of the country, except for Canada. We leave on a redeye a week from tomorrow!



  • 1 can sardines in olive oil with lemon (I like this brand)
  • 2 pasture-raised eggs, whisked
  • 1/2 Tbsp grass-fed ghee or butter
  • 1 cup broccoli slaw
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • Chili powder to taste
  • Chipotle powder to taste
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
  • Drizzle of Tessemae’s All Natural Lemon Chesapeake, optional


  1. Melt ghee or butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the broccoli slaw and season to taste with sea salt and pepper.
  2. Meanwhile, place sardines in a medium-sized bowl and mash with a fork (discard leftover oil in tin). Whisk in the eggs and add the cumin, chili powder, chipotle powder, sea salt and pepper.
  3. Once the slaw is softened a bit, add the sardine/egg mixture. Stir with a spatula to mix everything together.
  4. Continue to cook over medium or medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until scramble is cooked through.
  5. Remove from heat and drizzle Tessemae’s All Natural Lemon Chesapeake on top, if using.

Yields: 1 serving

Spicy Sardine Scramble

How I Take My Bulletproof®

Bulletproof® Coffee

I’m sure most of you are familiar with Bulletproof® Coffee by now. You may not have tried it, but I’m sure you’ve at least heard of it. If you haven’t given it a shot yet, I highly recommend it. Honestly, there’s nothing that really compares. It’s just plain incredible and satisfying, and has become a regular part of my morning. Sometimes, I just do Bulletproof® Coffee to get my day started and other times, I have it with a few pieces of bacon or breakfast sausage. It is perfect and I look forward to it every day. I even get excited to go to bed at night, so I can wake up and drink butter coffee!

For those of you turning your nose up at the idea, I recommend giving it a try before making up your mind. Plus, do you (or did you used to) add cream to your coffee? Well, remember that butter is just cream that’s been churned anyway. If you do decide to try it, just make sure you BLEND it and don’t try to whisk it instead. Blending is key, otherwise you’re left with an oil slick on top of the cup and no foam. It is not the same! For more info about this great coffee, check out the Bulletproof® website to learn more.

Meanwhile, here’s how I take my Bulletproof® Coffee:


  • 1.5 – 2 cups hot, good-quality coffee (I use homemade cold brew concentrate mixed w/ water & heated on the stove)
  • 1 Tbsp grass-fed gelatin powder (I use this kind, which doesn’t gel)
  • *1 Tbsp unsalted grass-fed butter
  • *1 Tbsp MCT oil (start w/ 1 tsp if it’s new to you & work your way up to 1 Tbsp)
  • Splash of full-fat coconut milk  

*Note: you can also use ghee in place of butter and coconut oil in place of MCT oil


  1. Place butter, MCT oil, coconut milk and gelatin powder in bottom of blender (make sure your blender can tolerate hot liquids. I use this high-powered blender.).
  2. Add hot coffee and place lid on blender container. Blend on high for 20-30 seconds.
  3. Pour into large mug and enjoy. (Note: foam mustaches are not uncommon when drinking).

Yields: 1 serving

Bulletproof® Coffee