Chicken and Vegetable Soup

chicken and vegetable soup

There’s been a cold front coming through Portland, and it has definitely been chilly. Thankfully, the sun has been in tow a good chunk of the days, but nonetheless, it’s still cold. This soup has been the perfect remedy to ward off some of the nip in the air, and it’s definitely a hearty one. I’ve found that I can tolerate white potatoes just fine, which is exciting, especially after avoiding them for so long. I had to nix them completely when I was treating my SIBO, but after all that was over, I felt scared to try reintroducing them. Anyway, it’s good to have them back in my life, but they’re definitely not an everyday kinda thing.

This soup gets thicker as it sits because of the starch in the potatoes, so it ends up becoming a little more like a stew. It sort of reminds me of a hybrid of chicken soup and chicken pot pie. It’s definitely comforting, savory, satisfying and filling. It would also work great with leftover turkey from Thanksgiving. You’d have to already have some stock on hand though, use store bought or make a fresh batch from the turkey carcass.

Meanwhile, I hope all of you have a joy-filled Thanksgiving tomorrow. Enjoy it and remember what you’re grateful for (more importantly, do this everyday!). Jesse and I will be headed to a friend’s house for Thanksgiving up in Vancouver, Washington. We often do our own thing, so we’re excited to be with lots of friends this year, many of which are from our hometown in Michigan. I will be taking my crustless butternut squash pie to share, along with some special bacon almonds.


chicken and vegetable soup 2



  • 3-4 lb whole chicken
  • Filtered water (enough to completely cover chicken in large soup pot)
  • 2 Tbsp sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, cut in half
  • 1/2 Tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 3 stalks celery, sliced
  • 3 large carrots, sliced
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 medium-large white potatoes, peeled & cut into pieces (alternatively, you could use butternut squash or sweet potato)
  • 12 oz bag frozen green peas
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric (I like this brand)
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Bunch of fresh cilantro or parsley leaves, chopped, plus stems for making stock


  1. Place chicken in a large soup pot and cover completely with filtered water. I usually leave fill it a couple inches from the top. Add the 2 Tbsp sea salt, bay leaves, 1 chopped celery stalk, cilantro or parsley stems and the halved garlic cloves. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat and then reduce heat to medium-low, and continue to simmer for about 3 hours.
  2. After 3 hours, remove the chicken from the pot and strain the stock through a fine mesh colander. Allow the chicken to cool.
  3. Meanwhile, place the same pot back on the stove over medium heat. Add the butter and once melted, add the 2 stalks chopped celery, carrots and yellow onion. Sauté a couple minutes and then add the potato pieces. Stir well and season to taste with sea salt and black pepper.
  4. Pour the stock back into the pot and stir in the turmeric and cayenne pepper. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. Allow mixture to simmer about 10-12 minutes or until potato pieces are tender. Then, add the frozen peas.
  5. Once chicken is cool enough to handle, remove meat from the bones and stir into the pot. I recommend saving the bones and skin for making bone broth. You can even store the bones in the freezer until you’re ready to make broth.
  6. Remove from heat and add a generous handful of chopped cilantro or parsley. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Serve into bowls and garnish with extra cilantro or parsley, if desired.

Mexican Beef and Greens Bowl


Happy Monday, everyone! I thought I’d welcome the week by sharing another current favorite recipe of mine (my spiced chicken stew being another current favorite — made that again yesterday). This meal is the perfect combination of spicy, meaty and a little creamy (thank you, mayo). The mayo is what turns this recipe from good to amazing, so don’t omit it. I know it might seem a little odd to add it to the mix, but it truly makes this recipe magical.



  • 2 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1.5 cups fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2/3 cup fresh salsa, plus more to taste, if desired (I used medium)
  • 1 bunch green kale, stemmed and torn into pieces
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup homemade avocado oil mayo or this brand if you don’t have any homemade on hand
  • Grated raw grass-fed cheddar and/or avocado slices for serving, optional


  1. Warm a large pan over medium heat. *Add the ground beef and break up with a wooden spoon. Then, add the onion and garlic. (*I used 15% ground beef, so didn’t need to add any fat to the pan, but if you’re using leaner ground beef, you may need to melt some fat of your choice before browning the meat with the onion and garlic).
  2. Continue cooking the meat mixture and then add the cumin, chili powder, paprika, sea salt and black pepper. Stir to distribute the spices.
  3. Stir in the green beans and salsa. Continue to cook for a few minutes.
  4. When the beans have softened slightly, stir in the kale. Cook 1-2 minutes more or until kale has wilted down. Turn off the heat and stir in the mayo.
  5. Serve with grated raw grass-fed cheddar (or other high-quality cheese) and/or avocado slices, if desired.

Spiced Chicken Stew


spiced chicken stew 2

This dish is so good that I’ve made it twice already over the course of three days. It is so flavorful and has the comforting qualities of chicken soup. It is incredibly easy and quick to throw together too. I think it’s going to be a regularly occurring meal for us this fall and winter.

Meanwhile, Jesse and I are getting ready to depart Wednesday evening for LA, where we’ll reside for 10 days to complete a week-long training with Jill Miller of Yoga Tune Up. We’re excited, but a little nervous too because it’s going to be a lot of work (but, good work!).

Happy Monday!


  • 2 Tbsp grass-fed butter or ghee
  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into pieces
  • 1 large carrot, sliced
  • 1 small-to-medium sized head of green cabbage, chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste


  1. Melt butter or ghee in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and carrots, and stir to coat in the butter (or ghee). After a minute, add the chicken pieces and 1 tsp of the sea salt. Continue to cook until the chicken is nearly cooked through, but still has a little pink to it.
  2. Pour chicken mixture into the slow cooker with the cumin, turmeric, remaining 1 tsp sea salt, black pepper and cabbage. Stir well.
  3. Place lid on slow cooker and let cook for 4 hours. If you’re home, I recommend stirring halfway through the cooking time, but it’s not critical and nothing to fret over if you can’t do so.

Yields: 3 servings

Italian Beef and Vegetable Soup

Italian Beef and Vegetable Soup

Isn’t it hard to believe that it’s almost Autumn already? We’ve already had several days that feel and smell like fall, but they’ve been interspersed with hot days. I do enjoy fall, but am not quite ready for summer to be over yet, even though it’s been a scorching one. Summer is definitely my favorite and I love the warm weather. But, I have a lot of exciting things on my plate this fall, so the anticipation of the changing season is sweet.

Next month, Jesse and I are headed down to the LA area to complete a week-long training with Jill Miller of Yoga Tune Up. We both have a lot of respect for Jill’s work and are grateful for the opportunity to train with her. Then, in November, I’m headed to NYC with a very dear friend of mine. We’re going to a conference called, “I Can Do It!” and are spending some extra time there for fun (it’ll be my first visit to NYC!). I’ll get to visit my second cousin who lives in Brooklyn as well. In December, Jesse and I are headed to Honolulu for a week of pure vacation. The ticket prices were a super good deal, so we decided to bite. We won’t actually be spending Christmas there, but will be there a little bit before.

Tonight, we’re headed to an Empire of the Sun concert at Edgefield, and I’m really excited! Jesse surprised me with tickets a couple months ago, and it definitely was a pleasant surprise. I get the evening off from work to go too, which is a nice change of pace for a Friday.

Meanwhile, enjoy the soup recipe and if it’s still warm wherever you are, tuck this one away for a chilly fall or winter day.



  • 1 Tbsp grass-fed butter or ghee
  • 1/2 large red onion, chopped
  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, sliced
  • 1.5 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1/2 lb Italian pork sausage
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 5.5 cups beef and/or chicken bone broth, preferably homemade
  • 1 box (~18 oz) unsweetened tomato sauce (I used this brand)
  • 2.5 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 medium zucchini, “noodled” with a spiralizer or julienne peeler
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped, plus extra for topping, if desired
  • Raw Parmesan cheese for topping, optional and if tolerated


  1. Melt butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, celery and carrots. Sauté a few minutes, stirring occasionally. Then, add the ground beef and pork sausage, breaking up the meat with a spatula. Add the sea salt, black pepper, oregano, thyme and cayenne to the mixture, and stir.
  2. Once the meat is browned, add the broth, tomato sauce, tomato paste and bay leaf. Stir well and then add the zucchini noodles and fresh basil. Simmer for about 25 minutes. Taste soup after simmering and adjust seasoning as necessary. Remove bay leaf when ready to serve.
  3. Garnish with extra chopped basil and/or raw Parmesan cheese for serving, if desired.

Simple Beef and Veggies Sauté


beef and veggie saute 2

It’s time for my trip home to Michigan! In fact, I left on a red-eye last night, and am currently sitting in the Detroit airport finishing this post. I have one more leg to get to my hometown of Alpena, but still have two hours to wait to catch the tiny plane there. I’m definitely tired and will probably need a nap later today. But, for now, I’m awake and drinking an Americano. Jesse has already been there for a week (he wanted to go for two weeks, but I decided to only go for one), so it was just the kitties and me last week, which is when I created this recipe.

Anyway, onto the food! It’s as simple as it gets, but the flavor is abundant. The coconut vinegar is what brings it all together, so don’t omit it. Whenever I feel like there’s a flavor missing, I usually just add coconut vinegar and it takes care of what was lacking. Truth be told, I’ve kinda had a crush on coconut vinegar for a little while now. The stuff is incredible. Also, the Maldon salt flakes at the end really make this dish wonderful too, but don’t let it be a deal breaker if you don’t have any. If you have avocado on hand, I recommend adding some slices on top as well because avocado is great with pretty much anything.

Cheers and enjoy!


  • 2 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 medium zucchini, thinly sliced
  • 6-7 kale leaves, removed from stems and torn into pieces
  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • Sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • Several splashes of coconut vinegar 
  • Maldon salt flakes for garnish, optional

beef and veggie saute


  1. Melt coconut oil to a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and stir with a wooden spoon. Let cook for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Next, add the ground beef and break up the meat with the spoon. Season to taste with a little sea salt and black pepper. Continue to cook meat for about 5-7 minutes or until all the meat is nearly brown.
  3. Then, add the sliced zucchini and stir. Allow zucchini to cook a couple minutes and then reduce the heat to medium-low and add the kale and tomatoes.
  4. Stir well and add the coconut vinegar and cayenne, and season to taste with sea salt and black pepper. Cook a minute or two more or until kale has softened a little bit.
  5. Serve and garnish with Maldon salt flakes on top. I also recommend avocado slices if you have some on hand.

Yields: 3 servings

Chicken Pesto “Noodle” Bowl


chicken pesto noodle bowl 2

I know I mentioned it already, but the summer heat has been insane in Portland! It has been consistently in the mid to upper 90s for many days now and it looks like it’s going to continue. I’ll be going home for a visit to Michigan in a couple weeks and I’m thinking it’s going to feel cold compared to what I’ve adapted to! It looks like temps in my hometown have been in the low 70s, but there’s also more humidity involved, so it usually feels warmer. Regardless of what the weather is like, it’ll be nice to be home for a visit.

Anyway, onto the food. I made this for dinner two nights in a row this past week because it’s so tasty and doesn’t involve any heat! It’s super easy and you don’t have to cook anything, unless you don’t have leftover chicken breasts in the fridge. If you don’t, then you have to cook a little bit, but at least it’s simple. I’d recommend either throwing some chicken on the grill or poaching it on the stove to get the job done.

Cheers and enjoy!


  • 1 batch homemade basil pesto (replace parsley with fresh basil)
  • 2 leftover boneless skinless chicken breasts, chopped
  • 2 medium zucchini, noodled with a spiralizer or julienne peeler
  • 1 medium heirloom tomato, chopped
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste


  1. Place chopped chicken in a large bowl and mix with 2 Tbsp or so of fresh pesto. Place in fridge and let sit for a couple hours. (Note: if you don’t have time to let the chicken marinate in the fridge, skip it, but I recommend doing so if you can, so the chicken absorbs more pesto flavor).
  2. Shortly before eating, place the zucchini noodles in a colander and generously salt with sea salt. Place the colander in the sink or over a large bowl and let the zucchini “sweat” for 10-20 minutes. Then, squeeze out any excess water and divide the zucchini noodles among two bowls.
  3. Divide the tomatoes between the two bowls and add a little more pesto (probably 1-3 tsp per bowl or to taste). Then, divide the chicken mixture between the two bowls and mix well. Season to taste with a little sea salt and/or pepper, if needed.

Turmeric Ginger Chicken Stir Fry

chicken stir fry

Stir fry is such an easy and quick meal to whip up when I’m not sure what to make for dinner. It’s especially great when we have lots of different veggies in the fridge to work with. Bonus that it doesn’t have to heat up the house too much either, though I did make this before the weather turned extremely hot. During this time, it was just hot.

Meanwhile, can you believe it’s almost the Fourth of July? It always seems like summer flies by after the Fourth, doesn’t it? Anyway, we don’t have any plans nailed down yet, but might go to Hood River for the day. We’ll see.

What are you doing for the Fourth of July?


  • 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into small pieces
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 large broccoli crown, chopped
  • About 1 cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 3/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1-2 Tbsp coconut aminos (find here)
  • 1/4 tsp fish sauce (I recommend this brand, which has no gluten or sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp mirin (find here)
  • Drizzle of raw honey (probably about 1/2 tsp)
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

chicken stir fry 2


  1. Melt coconut oil in a large pan or wok over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic. Stir until fragrant and sauté about 1-2 minutes. Then, add the cut-up chicken pieces and season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the coconut aminos, fish sauce, mirin, raw honey, ginger, turmeric and cayenne. Set aside.
  3. Once the chicken is nearly cooked through, add the carrots and broccoli. Mix well and sauté a few minutes. Then, add the zucchini and shiitake mushrooms, and stir well. Season to taste with a little sea salt and pepper.
  4. Pour in the sauce mixture and mix well. Continue to cook for a few minutes or until zucchini has softened a bit.
  5. Season to taste with more sea salt, pepper and/or coconut aminos, if needed.

Yields: 2 large servings