15 Minute Chicken and Broccoli. (GF/DF)

All the flavors of the classic dish, but on the table in under 15 minutes!

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This recipe is for all of you who are super busy but want a quick, easy meal on the table in 15 minutes at the end of the day.
Read: EVERYONE.
AmIright?!
I thought so.
So here’s the deal: with a tiny bit of alacrity, you definitely CAN have this recipe done in under 15 minutes start-to-finish.
Promise!

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I’m slowly getting over my fear of making Asian-inspired dishes. This one was super simple and turned out really well, especially considering how quickly it all comes together. In order to get this done in 15 minutes or less, you’ll have to multi-task a little bit. But that’s okay, because you’re a kitchen rock star and can totally handle it.
Here’s how easy it is to do:
The chicken gets chopped up into bite sized pieces and cooks on medium-high heat. The higher heat will help it stay really moist and tender. Bonus: it also cooks faster! 5-6 minutes is probably all you’ll need to have it cooked through.

While the chicken is cooking, you’ll whisk up your sauce.
Now, if you’re like me and want to have plenty of sauce to mix into the broccoli/rice, you’ll be happy to know I doubled the original amount.
There’s nothing worse than a dry dish, ya know? We can’t have any of that going on here.

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Speaking of broccoli, you have some options as far as how you want to cook it:
#1) You can add it to the pan once the chicken is done cooking.
Pro: Same pan! No extra mess!
Con: It will take longer to cook and this will become a 20 minute dinner.
#2) You can steam them in a separate pot.
Pro: It can steam away while the chicken cooks. Yay multi-tasking!
Con: More clean up because of the extra pot.

Either way works, it just depends what your priority is: dinner on the table ASAP or as little clean up as possible.

For a complete meal, serve the chicken and broccoli over some rice (hello, 10-minute boil-in-bag rice!) and enjoy!

15 Minute Chicken and Broccoli

Ingredients:

  • 1lb chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into cubes
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Broccoli florets

For the sauce:

  • 6 Tbsp GF Tamari, soy sauce, or coconut aminos
  • 4 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbsp corn starch
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp sesame oil

1). Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and add it to the pan. Cook for 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink.

2). While the chicken is cooking, whisk together the sauce ingredients. Set aside.

3). If steaming broccoli in a separate pot, bring water to a boil and place in the steamer basket. Alternatively, you can add the broccoli to the pan with chicken and cover to cook for a few minutes.

4). Once the chicken is cooked through and the broccoli is crisp-tender, add the sauce mixture to the pan and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until it begins to thicken. Garnish with sesame seeds (optional), and serve over rice, if desired. Enjoy!

Servings: About 4. Recipe adapted from here.

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Lemon Herb Salmon Patties. (GF/DF, Paleo)

These stunning Lemon Herb Salmon Patties are incredibly filling and so healthy! Enjoy them in a sandwich, on a salad, or with your favorite vegetables!

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I’m slightly obsessed with these Lemon Herb Salmon Patties.
They’re super filling and hearty, plus they’re so healthy! Lots of protein and Omega-3’s going on here. Love it.

If you’re guilty of getting in a salmon rut like I am sometimes, you’re going to love this simple and fresh dinner idea, especially because it’s quick enough to make on a weeknight.
Getting the patties together took maybe 5-7 minutes, and then it’s about a 4 minute cook time on each side. You could definitely have these on the table in less than 20 minutes!

For this recipe, you’re going to use the food processor to cut up the salmon so it will form burger patties.
Yup. Did you know you can grind up your own meat in the food processor?!
I use my food processor quite a bit, but I had never done this before. Please tell me I’m not the only one!
All you have to do is cut your salmon into chunks, put it in the food processor and pulse it for maaaybe 10-15 seconds. Once it’s ground up it’s ready to go!
This machine is magic, y’all. Is there anything it can’t do?? No? Okay then.

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I served the salmon patties two ways–once on top of a salad and once along some roasted vegetables (yay brussel sprouts!!), but you could definitely turn these into a sandwich if you’d prefer. They’re really sturdy and won’t fall apart on you.

To keep this meal gluten and grain free, I used almond flour as a binder. The original recipe called for a cup of cooked quinoa, which would be great if you have leftover quinoa, but having to make it is an extra step (and pot!) I’d rather not deal with since almond flour worked well!

You may be wondering what that dollop is on top of the patties. We noticed they’re a tiiiiny bit on the dry side if you don’t have some sort of sauce on them. Tartar sauce would be a good option. My husband used a thick blue cheese dressing in a pinch, but then I made a homemade ranch-type of sauce which is what you see pictured here. I’ll include directions for that below in case you want to make it. It’s super easy, but it does require an immersion blender.

Lemon Herb Salmon Patties

Ingredients:

  • 1lb raw salmon, skin removed
  • 1 egg + 1 egg white, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup almond flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 red or yellow onion, finely diced (as tiny as possible!)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp dried marjoram
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • juice of 1 lemon (If you only use 1/2, the lemon flavor doesn’t shine through)
  • salt and pepper

1). In the bowl of a food processor, add the raw salmon and pulse until it’s evenly ground and starting to be sticky.

2). Combine all the remaining ingredients in a bowl and add the salmon. Mix to combine. Lightly score the mixture into 4 sections. Form the 4 pieces into burger patties.

3). Add a little bit of olive oil to the bottom of a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the salmon patties and cook for about 4 minutes per side. Remove when they’re cooked through and no longer pink. Enjoy!

Servings: 4. Approximate Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 364 Carbs: 3g Fat: 23g Protein: 32g Fiber: 3g Points+: 9 Recipe adapted from here.

For the homemade ranch-style sauce:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup extra light (must be extra light!) olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp lime juice (optional)
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced (optional)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Immersion blender

1). Important: You will need an immersion blender to do this. Place the egg, olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, and salt into a mason jar or container with tall sides. Put the immersion blender in the container so it’s resting at the very bottom, then turn it on. Let it blend like this for several seconds, then slowly and gently move it up so it blends all of the mixture. This should take less than a minute.

2). Once it’s blended through, add the remaining ingredients and stir together. Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks! If you want to make it into a thinner dressing, add a tiny bit of water at a time and stir until you get the consistency you want.

Yield: about 1 1/4 cups. Serving size: 1 Tablespoon. Approximate Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 101 Carbs: 0 Fat: 11g Protein: 0g Fiber: 0g Points+: 3 Recipe adapted from here.

20-Minute Paleo Burrito Bowls with Broccoli Slaw. (GF)

A healthier take on popular burrito bowls using a super easy to make veggie base! 

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Okay, here’s the deal.
Most burrito bowls don’t have a lot of vegetables since the base is typically a generous serving of rice and beans.
To make these burrito bowls paleo/whole30 approved, I swapped them out!
And, I took a shortcut, which I don’t often do in the kitchen.
This simple swap makes this meal super convenient and easy, perfect for a weeknight meal.
Are you ready?

I used an onion, bell pepper, garlic, and…

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…bag of broccoli slaw!

The end result is 110% delicious and you won’t even miss your former rice and bean base. Plus, it’s so so so fast and easy since all you have to do is open the bag and start cooking! Why have I not thought of this sooner?! I have a feeling I may be using this shortcut for other meal ideas, too.

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The meat is really flavorful thanks to spices, a can of diced green chiles, and fresh cilantro. Spoon it over your veggie base and then add whatever toppings you’d like! My favorites? Salsa and guacamole. Yum!

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One last thing–my husband put the slaw and meat in tortillas to eat as tacos instead of as a bowl, and he was a huge fan. So, that’s another option for you or your family members!

20-Minute Paleo Burrito Bowls with Broccoli Slaw

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp EVOO
  • 1 bag of broccoli slaw from the produce department
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 can diced green chiles
  • 1 Tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons paprika, regular or smoked
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Toppings: salsa, guacamole, etc.

1). Pre-heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the broccoli slaw, onions, bell pepper, and garlic. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Sautee for 5-8 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove from the pan and set aside.

2). Brown the ground beef in the skillet. Add diced tomatoes, green chiles, and spices. Stir to combine, adding a little water (I used about 1/3 cup) if necessary. Cook until most of the water has evaporated.

3). To assemble: layer the bowls with the sauteed vegetables on the bottom, then the meat sauce and toppings of choice. Enjoy!

Servings: 4. Approximate Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 301 Carbs: 17g Fat: 15g Protein: 25g Fiber: 4g Sugar: 8g Points+: 8 Recipe adapted from here.

Honey Sesame Ginger Salmon. (GF/DF)

Put an Asian flare on your regular salmon dinner with this easy but flavorful Honey Sesame Ginger Salmon! 

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My husband and I both love salmon, and it is definitely my go-to for a quick weeknight meal. It bakes in just 20 minutes, and it’s so good for you!
Unfortunately, even as a cooking blogger, I’m totally guilty of living in a salmon rut.
It goes something like this: salmon + a sprinkle of creole seasoning. Baked in the oven.
BOOM.
Done.
Dinner on the table in 20 minutes flat.

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And honestly? It’s really good.
We love it.
And if you haven’t tried salmon like that, you should plan on it.
But, when I get a chance to catch my breath from our whirlwind daily schedules (summer please hurry!), I get inspired to experiment!

This honey sesame ginger salmon, though?
Amazing.
I’ve mentioned before how I usually steer clear from Asian-style dishes because I’ve had a few complete failures in the past, so I was a little bit hesitant to try this recipe.
One bite and my husband and I both looked at each other in disbelief. It’s that good.

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You do need to plan ahead and let the salmon marinade for about 30 minutes, but you can work on prepping your side dishes during that time. (Or throw in a load of laundry…watch a re-run of Friends…waste time on Pinterest. You know, whatever.)

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The rest of the recipe is pretty self-explanatory. A lot of the ingredients in the marinade also appear in the honey ginger glaze. You’ll add the glaze on top of the salmon after it finishes baking. You can see how the marinade caramelizes on the salmon, and the glaze just takes it up a notch!

One last note–there’s a teeeeeny bit of sriracha in the glaze, but overall this dish is not spicy! If you’re worried about it, feel free to omit that ingredient completely.

Honey Sesame Ginger Salmon

Ingredients:

For the marinade:

  • 4 salmon fillets
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons GF tamari, or coconut aminos, or soy sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar or honey
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced

For the honey ginger glaze:

  • 2 Tablespoons honey
  • 2 teaspoons GF tamari, or coconut aminos, or soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds

1). In a large bowl, whisk together all of the marinade ingredients. Add the salmon and allow it to marinade for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator. Turn the salmon occasionally.

2). Preheat the oven to 400F. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray. Add the salmon, along with the marinade, to the dish and bake for about 20 minutes.

3). While the salmon is baking, in a small bowl, combine the glaze ingredients. Serve salmon immediately with the honey glaze.

Servings: 4. Approximate nutritional information per serving: Calories: 395 Carbs: 20g Fat: 24g Protein: 14g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 16g Points+: 10 Recipe adapted from here

Stuffed Pepper Soup. (GF, DF, Paleo)

A deconstructed version of traditional stuffed bell peppers–all the flavors of the original dish, but in soup form!

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I think I speak for, oh, half of the country when I say: brrrrrrr.

Snow, ice, and sub-zero wind chills? Pretty sure I’m going to turn into a human popsicle.
What better way to warm up than with this cozy bowl of stuffed pepper soup?
I grew up eating stuffed bell peppers (a lot), and I really love them.
But, did you know you can take all of the ingredients and flavors of stuffed peppers, and put them in a soup?

I was a little hesitant the first time I made this because I was skeptical that this soup could actually taste like traditional stuffed peppers. Thankfully, it did, and I’ve made it many, many times since!

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In a way, the soup version is easier because you don’t have to actually stuff the peppers and bake them. Just let the soup do it’s thing, boil some rice seperately (if you want it), and it’s ready to go!

A note on the rice: traditional peppers have rice in them. Add it if you’d like, or don’t! If you are trying to keep it paleo-friendly, you’ll want to skip the rice.

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Growing up, we always topped our stuffed peppers with sour cream, so you can do that if you’d like. Again, for dairy-free/paleo, skip the topping.

Make a big pot of this soup tonight and stay warm!!

Stuffed Pepper Soup
Ingredients:

  • 1 lb lean grass-fed ground beef (or turkey, if you’d prefer)
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cans (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 1 3/4 cups tomato sauce
  • 2 cups reduced-sodium, low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • optional: cooked rice

1). Heat a large pot to medium-high heat. Brown the ground meat until no longer pink. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low and add onions, bell peppers, and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until softened.

2). Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, chicken broth, marjoram, and more salt and pepper, to taste. Cover and simmer on low heat for about 30 minutes to allow the flavors to come together.

3). Serve in bowls, over rice, if desired. Top with sour cream if you’d like!

Servings: 6. Serving size: 1 1/2 cups soup, 1/2 cup rice. Approximate Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 261 Fat: 5g Carbs: 37.5g Fiber: 5g Protein: 17.6g Sugar: 6g Points+: 7 Recipe adapted from here. Adapted recipe courtesy of Audrey’s Apron.

30-Minute Shortcut Beef and Vegetable Ragu. (GF, DF, Paleo)

The most flavorful ragu ever! Perfect for a weeknight meal, and a great way to sneak in some veggies!

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I had NO idea how amazing this meal was going to be when I made it.
So. Much. Flavor!!
My husband proclaimed it one of his favorite meals ever. So simple, but seriously amazing.

You know it’s a winner when you genuinely look forward to the leftovers, and this sauce reheats beautifully–it’s almost better the second day! You can serve it over pasta, gluten-free pasta, or spaghetti squash (my favorite!).

Speaking of which, click here to learn how to cook spaghetti squash!

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Okay, so what makes this sauce so wonderful?

  • From start to finish, you can have dinner on the table in 30 minutes. Always a win, especially on busy weeknights. Thanks, food processor, for making this so quick and easy!
  • Everyone loves spaghetti and meat sauce, right? Right. Gotta love dishes that will appeal to your entire family.
  • The ingredients are simple. Humble, even. But, when they come together, they create a rich, cozy sauce. The key is using high quality beef (grass-fed), and marinara sauce.
  • The “shortcut” in this shortcut ragu is the marinara sauce. It’s (gasp) store-bought. Normally I’m all about making everything from scratch, but sometimessssss life gets crazy and you need a quick meal. Find a high-quality marinara sauce and it will make this meat sauce taste like it has been simmering all day.
  • My favorite –> Hidden veggies! In order to sneak some vegetables into the sauce, I threw them in the food processor first until they were chopped up teeny tiny. My husband hates mushrooms but didn’t even know he was eating them!

Hooray for adding nutrition and making a meal go further in a healthy, cost-effective way! I love it.

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Quick tip: double this recipe and freeze it!

30-Minute Shortcut Beef and Vegetable Ragu

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef (I used 90/10)
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and roughly chopped (I used a handful of baby carrots!)
  • 1 rib of celery, roughly chopped
  • 4oz sliced mushrooms
  • 24 oz high quality tomato-basil marinara sauce
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • cooked pasta (regular or GF), or spaghetti squash
  • salt and pepper

1). Heat a large skillet or pot over medium heat and add the ground beef. While it is beginning to brown, add the onion and garlic to the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Add to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper.

2). Add the carrot, celery, and mushrooms to the food processor. Pulse until minced. Add to the skillet and season with salt and pepper.

3). When the ground beef is no longer pink and the vegetables are tender, add the marinara sauce and chicken broth, stirring to combine. Reduce heat slightly and place a lid partially on top of the skillet. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4). Stir in fresh basil. Taste and re-season with more salt and pepper, if necessary. Serve over cooked pasta or spaghetti squash.

Servings of sauce: about 6. Approximate Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 203 Carbs: 16g Fat: 7g Protein: 18g Fiber: 3g Sugar: 8g Points+: 5 Recipe adapted from here

Easy Paleo Almond Chicken Tenders. (GF)

These chicken tenders are coated in almond meal and baked for a healthy take on traditional chicken fingers!

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Ever want a no-fuss dinner that you know everyone will love?
All the time, right?
Add this one to your weekly rotation.
Oh yes, I said weekly.
If you know me well, you know I RARELY cook anything twice, but I’ve already made this dish numerous times because it’s such a crowd-pleaser.

I mean, everyone loves chicken tenders, right?
Exactly.

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Thankfully, these are much more heart-healthy than what you’d order in a restaurant or buy at the store because they’re breaded in almond meal instead of flour, and they’re baked, not fried.

Let’s be honest, usually when something is baked, that’s code for “not-as-good-as-fried”, but this chicken turns out perfectly cooked and amazing. Plus, it’s so much easier than frying since you just stick the whole pan in the oven at once and you’re done!

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Before baking, I dipped the chicken in a beaten egg and then in a spicy almond meal mixture. A lot of fun spices come together here like cumin, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. There’s a bit of heat from the pepper but it’s not overpowering.

I used Trader Joe’s almond meal for the breading. Depending on what brand you use, you may have different results. 1 cup of almond meal is perfect for 2 pounds of chicken. Your chicken should be perfectly cooked in about 25 minutes, making this a great weeknight meal option your whole family (even picky eaters) will love!

Easy Paleo Chicken Tenders

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2-1 tsp cayenne pepper (use 1/2 tsp if you don’t want it spicy)
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • cooking spray

1). Preheat the oven to 375F. Line a pan with foil for easy clean-up if desired, and spray with cooking spray.

2). Cut the chicken breasts into long strips about 1-2″ wide.

3). In a small bowl, beat the egg lightly.

4). In a larger bowl, combine the almond meal with all of the spices.

5). Dip each piece of chicken in the egg, letting the excess run off. Then dip into the almond meal mixture, coating well. Place on the baking sheet and repeat with leftover chicken. Tip: don’t overcrowd the pan! For crispy chicken tenders, there has to be space between them for the air to circulate. 

6). Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and no longer pink. Enjoy!

Servings: about 8. Approximate Nutritional Information per Serving: Calories: 214 Carbs: 4g Fat: 11g Protein: 28g Fiber: 2g Points+: 6 Recipe adapted from here. Adapted recipe courtesy of Audrey’s Apron.