Local’s Gym Nutrition

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Jul.18, 2014

I miss good desserts.  I hate sitting in a restaurant watching my kids eat pie and ice cream sundaes.  Most Paleo desserts are missing something…they’re good, especially if you rarely eat treats and want something but they aren’t the same as a good piece of salted caramel chocolate  pie or an Almond Joy Sundae at Arnies.   Last week a friend of mine told me she made a Paleo Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp that she had googled.

I had some guests coming for dinner Wednesday so I made it. It’s good, like, actually tastes like dessert good. I bought some almond milk vanilla ice cream that made it even better. I’m making it again tonight. The best part is the “crisp” topping would be equally good on peaches, nectarines, berries, apples or a combination of all of them, so you don’t have to wait for strawberries and rhubarb to be in season to make it again. I doubled it but cut the honey to 8Tbls for the filling. 10 Tablespoons seemed like a lot and at 8T it was plenty sweet, so I’ll reduce it to 7Tbls tonight.

For the filling

2 cups rhubarb, diced
2 cups strawberries, diced
zest from one orange (or lemon)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
5 Tablespoons honey
a pinch of salt
1½ Tablespoons arrowroot powder

For the crumbles

½ cup chopped pecans
¾ cups almond flour
2 Tablespoons coconut flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ cup honey
4 Tablespoons coconut oil


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put the strawberries and rhubarb in a large mixing bowl with the orange zest, lemon juice, honey, salt, and arrowroot powder and mix well.
Mix the pecans, flours, cinnamon, salt and honey together in a medium mixing bowl. Cut in the coconut oil with your hands or a pastry cutter until the mixture begins to form crumbs.
Grease an oven proof casserole or skillet and spoon in the fruit filling. Crumble the topping evenly over the top. Bake for 25 minutes, checking occasionally. When the topping is browned and the fruit is bubbling, remove from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.

The original recipe can be found here: Pinch of Yum Paleo Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

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Chocolate Cherry Almond Butter Cookies

Jul.16, 2014

I wanted to make the Chocolate Cherry Muffins at Paleomg.com on Monday, but I was missing some of the ingredients.  Like, cherries and applesauce.   Couldn’t make them but was definitely craving something similar so this is what I came up with.  It was a major mistake because I wanted to eat them all.


1 cup almond butter
1 large egg
1/4cup organic maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt (I use Himalayan sea salt in everything)
1/4 cup cacao powder (you can use cocoa powder)

mix ins:
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried Montmorency tart cherries

Mix the ingredients well with a stand mixer or hand mixer or your massive guns and a spoon.
Add in the mix ins and well, mix.

Put them on a cookie sheet lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper and flatten them out slightly.  I found these were kind of wet but they baked up nicely.
I prefer parchment because I can slide the whole thing off the baking sheet and on to a cooling rack.  It’s super easy.  Bake at 350 for  12 minutes.
Try not to eat them all.   I’d post a pic but I made them yesterday and I came home from work to find they had disappeared.

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Sweet Kale Salad

Jul.16, 2014

Have you tried the Sweet Kale Salad from Costco?  I was buying 3-4 every time I went to Costco.  Steve and I really love that stuff, and then I took a look at the ingredients on the dressing.  That’s nasty.  I don’t know what most of that stuff is, and I definitely don’t want to eat it.  Also, most “bag o’salads” have an odd smell.  They have to rinse it in some sort of preservative to keep it looking fresh for so long, I don’t want to eat that.   I realized how simple it would be to make my own, so this is what I ended up with.


Salad -
1 bunch curly kale, stems removed and chopped small
1/4-1/2 head cabbage, chopped
1/4-1/2 head purple cabbage, chopped
1 package organic broccoli slaw (QFC sells it in tubs and it doesn’t smell, otherwise wash it real well)
15-20 Brussels sprouts, shaved with a mandolin or chopped (they don’t add a strong flavor to the salad, but they’re really good for you, so add them)
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2-3/4 cup dried cranberries sweetened with fruit juice  (I buy these in the bulk bins at PCC or Whole Foods, you can use the commercial brand, but they soak them in sugar and canola oil, which is not optimal)

Maple Poppyseed  Dressing:
5Tbls organic maple syrup
2Tbls olive oil (or avocado oil)
2Tbls Apple Cider Vinegar
2teas dijon mustard
3teas poppy seeds
pinch salt

Toss everything together.  Let it sit for about 10 minutes and toss again. 

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Apple Cinnamon Breakfast Cake

Jul.01, 2014

I found this recipe over a year ago and it’s still a part of my Sunday bake-a-thon.  I double the recipe and Steve and I take it to work to eat mid morning.  The original recipe can be found here:  http://www.primallyinspired.com/paleo-apple-cinnamon-breakfast-cake/

I’ve changed it up a bit.  I sometimes add raisins and usually add chia seeds.  Up until I got really lazy about this, I chopped up all the apples into 1/2″ chunks.  I’ve used Granny Smith, Fuji, Pink Lady, Braeburn, Macintosh…doesn’t really matter.
Now I core the apples and toss them in the food processor.  Both ways work just fine.   I don’t typically measure very well after the first several times I make a recipe.  This one is very forgiving.

4 cups organic apples  chopped into 1/2″ chunks or toss in a food processor and pulse a few times
1/2 cup organic Thompson raisins (optional)  I’ve used dried blueberries too, fresh would probably be really great too
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1/4-1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons coconut oil

9 eggs
3Tablespoons coconut milk (I just use whatever I have, usually almond milk)
2Tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 1/2 Tablespoons coconut flour
3 Tablespoons chia seeds (optional)
heaping 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt

oven 350
Cook the apples in a skillet with water, cinnamon, vanilla and raisins until it’s the consistency of apple pie filling.  When done, stir in coconut oil and let cool a bit while you prepare the rest.
In a large bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients and whisk until combined.  Add apples and mix well.

Grease a 8×8 pan with coconut oil and pour the mix in the pan.  Bake for 50 minutes.
I’ve never eaten this warm.  Since it’s mostly eggs and apples, I think it tastes best cold.  It’s not terrible with a little maple syrup on top.
This makes about 9 servings.  I almost always double it and use a big pan.

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Paleo Sri Racha

Jun.09, 2014

I found the red jalapenos I needed for this recipe at Country Farms.  Rhys picked one up and ate it whole, which was handy, because I needed to know if they were hot so I could adjust the recipe.  He said,  “They taste like a red bell pepper but hang on a minute….yep, they’re plenty hot.”  Then he calmly got himself some water and proceeded to tell me about a comic book character or something.  I’d be miserable for hours.  ”

I found this at Nom Nom Paleo.       http://nomnompaleo.com/post/36060636540/paleo-sriracha-homemade-20-minute-sriracha

It looked pretty easy and the ingredients were pretty basic.   This didn’t cost much.   I already had most of the ingredients on hand.  I just need to replenish the jalapenos and that was about $2.


  • 1½ pounds fresh red jalapeño peppers, stemmed, seeded, and roughly chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • ⅓ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons Paleo-friendly fish sauce
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt

    Toss everything in a high speed blender and process until smooth.  Pour in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.  Once it boils, turn it down to a simmer.  The recipe says to cook for 5-10 minutes.  I was prepping another hot sauce, so I just stirred it occasionally and probably had it on for at least 20 minutes.  I would definitely cook it as long next time because it was excellent.  Turned off the flame and let it cool a bit before pouring it in a jar.  Steve said the house smelled weird, but I just tossed an apple crisp (recipe soon) in the oven and no one cared about the Sri Racha smell any more.  I don’t think I’ll ever buy Sri Racha again.

    Let me know if you try it!

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Bacon Wrapped Avocado

Jun.06, 2014

I saw this recipe a couple days ago on “Just Eat Real Food”.  It was a re-post from Salted Paleo.  I eat at least 1/2 an avocado every day.  Why not wrap it in bacon?

I usually buy my avocados at Whole Foods or PCC.  They just have nice big perfect avocados, but they really are pricey.  Since I was searching for red jalapenos at Country Farms, I decided to grab a couple avocados there.  They were $1.29 each and medium small as far as avocados go.  Don’t buy them when they’re  squishy ripe since they do go in the oven.   I used large eggs, but medium would fit better.

Cut the avocado(s) in half, remove peel and pit.  Crack and separate your egg, slip yolk into the middle of the avocado, carefully wrap a strip of bacon around the avocado.  I used a couple toothpicks to keep it in place.  I also had some leftover prosciutto, so I wrapped one with prosciutto and one with bacon.  The prosciutto was much easier to work with, but the bacon had more flavor.  It’s bacon.  I totally expected it to win this contest.

I put the avocado halves on a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil.  I hate scrubbing pans, so the foil made this pretty easy as far as clean up goes.   I’ll try parchment next time, the bacon stuck to the foil a bit.

Put the pan in a 350 oven for 20 minutes, then turn on the broiler for about 4-5 minutes.  The recipe said to flip them and broil the other side, but I didn’t find that to be necessary.

I made these early in the morning and took them to work for an afternoon snack. They kept well in the fridge.  I warmed mine up in the microwave for a few seconds.
I’m planning on making more of these for Father’s Day brunch at my parents.  They are delicious!

The one on the left is with prosciutto, the right is bacon.

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Pineapple Whip

Jun.03, 2014

If you’ve ever been to the Dole pineapple plantation, Disneyland or Disney World and tasted the Dole Whip they sell, you know it’s the kind of thing you can’t get enough of.  It’s crazy expensive and the last time I passed just because it was about $10 for a cone.   My mom sent me this recipe a couple weeks ago and I finally got a chance to try it.  I don’t know where it came from or I’d give credit.  I did tweak it just a tiny bit.  It’s been long enough since I’ve had Dole Whip that I honestly can’t tell you if this tastes like it.  I can tell you that it’s amazing and simple and every one of my people commanded that I make it again.

You’ll need a high speed, good quality blender or food processor.  I use my Ninja. My mom used her Cuisinart, but a Blendtec or Vitamix would be ideal.

I bought my pineapple at Trader Joes.  You can test for ripeness by pulling the center leaves.  If they come out easily, you probably have a good one.  If they are hard to pull, it’s not ripe.  It should also be more yellow than green and will smell ripe, so flip it over and smell it.  Ignore the people staring at you.  It’s your pineapple, not theirs.

I don’t buy my coconut milk at TJ’s.  I don’t want light coconut milk and the coconut cream is awesome, but not for this.  I’ll save that for ice cream recipes…
I bought organic coconut milk at Whole Foods.  It’s about $3 can.  The pineapple was also $3 at TJ’s.  So, you get a blender full of awesome for $6 and a little honey.


1 ripe pineapple, cut into small chunks and frozen overnight
1 can coconut milk
2 T raw organic honey (to taste)

Toss all the above in the blender or food processor and let it work it’s magic.  You may need to scrape down the sides once or twice.   Eat immediately.  We ate it before I could take a picture.  OK, I forgot to take a picture but truly, it was gone very quickly.

This made four Egner sized (moderate) servings.  You can freeze it but it’s going to be a brick so you should just eat it all.

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Bacon Pancake Dippers

Jun.02, 2014

There’s a picture of these bacon pancake dippers that’s been floating around Facebook for a while now.  They look amazing.
The first time I saw it, I didn’t have a decent pancake recipe to try it with.  Now I do.   So I made them yesterday.  I can’t get the basic pancake recipe to hyperlink, so just scroll back a few.  I posted it a couple weeks ago.
The Paleo pancake batter is a bit thin, so dipping the bacon in the batter didn’t seem like it would work very well, so I made a long narrow pancake, and laid a strip of cooked bacon on it, then topped it with a little bit of batter.  Just like I’ve shown in the pictures.  Easy day.

Of course, since I’d just cooked up a batch of bacon in the oven, I had a nice pan of bacon fat to cook the pancakes in.
Here is the easiest way to cook bacon mess free:

Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil
Lay bacon on foil as close together as you can squeeze it
Put sheet in cold oven and turn to 425
Set timer for 20 minutes

Done!  Remove cooked bacon with tongs to a paper towel lined plate to drain.  Save your bacon drippings for pancakes or toss it and cook them in coconut oil.

Now, put those strips of bacon in pancakes, dip them in syrup and eat them.
This is definitely worth making for a lazy weekend.
Let me know what you think.

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Easy Mayo!

May.22, 2014

Did you know that if you have an immersion or “stick” blender, you can make mayonnaise in about 2 minutes? I never use store bought mayo. It has weird stuff in it like potato starch and words that don’t sound like food.

If you’re all grossed out or nervous about raw eggs, then this is not for you. To date, I’ve never had a problem and I don’t feed this mayo to anyone’s newborns or anything, so I’m totally fine with it.

I buy avocado oil at Costco.

In a liquid measuring cup:

2/3 cup avocado oil  *you can sub another oil but it may alter the flavor of the mayo.
1 whole egg
1 teaspoon vinegar or lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard (optional)
salt to taste

Put the immersion blender all the way to the bottom of the measuring cup and run full speed, it should immediately be turning white and getting creamy. Run the blender for about 20-30 seconds, blending it all the way to the top.
That’s it!

I like to add curry powder for curried chicken salad. You could use lemon juice instead of the vinegar and add some lemon zest for a lemon mayo. Sri Racha in this would be such a great sandwich spread if I ate sandwiches.

Last night I covered wild salmon fillets with the mayo, sprinkled with dill weed and baked at 425 for about 8 minutes. Zoe asks for her salmon this way.

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May.20, 2014

These cookies are really versatile.  I found the recipe at www.preppypaleo.com awhile back and I’ve created many different versions.  They’re called “breakfast cookies” but I usually don’t add all the mix ins because my teens prefer them with less of the good stuff due to seeds getting caught in retainer wires, etc.  Keep in mind if you are dealing with braces in the family.  Apparently chia seeds, flax seeds, and pumpkin seeds are problematic, so I sneak some in anyway and get yelled at later.  These are fast and easy to make.  I usually throw some together and start to finish, it’s about 20 minutes with 13 of those being baking time.  Last week I added about 3 tablespoons organic cacao powder to make them a chocolate cookie.  If I gave you one at Regionals last weekend, you tried the chocolate version.  My kids really liked them.

I buy raw almond butter at Trader Joe’s.  It’s about $6.
Mix-in’s I have tried and recommend, the starred ones I always add:

*unsweetened shredded coconut 1/3-1/2 cup
*Enjoy Life chocolate chips
*chia seeds 1/4 cup or more
pumpkin seeds
flax seeds
chopped pecans or any nuts
hemp hearts
*organic raisins
dried cranberries (I try to find the good ones that haven’t been soaked in canola oil and sugar)

Paleo Breakfast Cookies
oven 350
1cup raw almond butter
1 egg
1/4 cup maple syrup or raw organic honey (both work equally well)
3 cups mix-ins of choice
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients in a stand mixer until thoroughly blended.  Drop by tablespoons onto a parchment or silicone lined baking sheet (I use a Pampered Chef scoop) then press down slightly with hand or silicone spatula.  The batter can be pretty sticky.  Bake 12-15 minutes.
I have to hide them or they disappear in minutes.

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