There are one million and one ways to make roasted sweet potatoes. They are one of the most versatile vegetables and can be dressed up in many ways ranging from savory to sweet. Here is just one way that I like to prepare these for meal prep.
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
Seasoning blend: 1 tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp black pepper, ½ tbsp lemon granules, 1 tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg, 1 tsp ancho chili powder, 1 ½ tsp Herbs de Provence, ½ tsp smoked paprika.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
On a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, arrange your sweet potatoes into a single layer.
Drizzle a layer of olive oil over the potatoes and then sprinkle over the seasoning blend (you may or may not use all of it – if you don’t, save the rest from chicken, it’s incredible).
Using your hands, toss the potatoes so that they are evenly coated.
Roast in the oven until the insides are tender when pierced with a toothpick.
NOTE: For meal prep, I tend to “under roast” my potatoes because I do not want them to become too soft after reheating for a meal.
Divide into meal prep containers after the potatoes have cooled.
I know I post weight loss shit all the time but I have such a hard time believing that I’ve made progress, or feeling better about my body (shoutout to gender dysphoria), so I really need these before and after pics to prove to myself that I am making progress and that I am healthier. So sorry for the spam, I’m just proud of myself 🙏🏼💪🏼 left pic is April 2016, 175ish lbs. right pic is was yesterday, March 2017, 135 lbs. This was all thanks to intermittent fasting (the warrior diet, water fasting), elimination of gluten, and a general focus on healthy eating, smarter portion sizes, and smaller eating windows. If I can do it, so can you
Hey! I have missed all of you so much. Though I’m not returning with a full start to finish recipe, I did some cooking, and I definitely waned to share with all of you – especially since I brought my camera out. I also wanted to let all of you know that I regularly update my instagram. My profile is bakingwithbooks.
1.5 lb skin-on salmon cut into three portions
Seasoning blend for salmon: kosher salt, black pepper, Herbs de Provence, smoked paprika, hot paprika
One pint mixed (orange and red) cherry tomatoes, rinsed and stems removed
½ large shallot, sliced or roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
Fresh parsley, roughly chopped
Kosher salt and pepper
Strawberry balsamic dressing (found at Whole Foods)
In a large cast iron skillet over medium heat, drizzle a fair amount of olive oil and add in the shallots and garlic and let them sweat and infuse into the oil.
After about 1 minute, add in the tomatoes, season generously with salt and pepper and allow them to blister for about 3 minutes.
Remove tomatoes to a bowl.
Add a little more olive oil to the pan and place the salmon skin-side down into the pan, searing for about 2 minutes.
Flip and continue cooking for about 4-5 minutes.
Add back in the tomatoes and add in a small amount of strawberry balsamic.
Remove from heat when salmon is finished (should be moist and still slightly pink).
Flavorful. Amazing. Incredible. Whole30 Compliant! These are spicy, so this is your warning. There was no holding back, but the coconut curry sauce provides the perfect balance. Served with spiraled sweet potato noodles, and this is the perfect meal prep!
Ingredients for Meatballs
½ lb ground round (or ground beef)
4 cloves garlic, minced
¼ large yellow onion, minced
2 large tbsp cilantro, minced
Seasoning blend: 1 tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp ground black pepper, 1 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp garam masala, ½ tsp fennel seeds, ½ tsp Indian red pepper, ½ tsp tandoori masala, ½ tsp cumin, and ½ tsp cinnamon.
Ingredients for Coconut Curry Sauce
¼ large red onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp tomato paste
1 tsp curry powder
7 oz tomato sauce
1 can (14 oz) full fat coconut milk
1 tbsp cilantro, minced
½ tbsp arrowroot starch/powder or tapioca powder
1 ½ tbsp date syrup (softened [pitted] dates pureed with water), more if necessary
Salt and pepper to taste
Parsley and cilantro for garnish
Sweet potato noodles
Directions for Meatballs
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with a small bit of nonstick spray.
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.
Using a small ice cream scoop or a large tablespoon, form balls – this mixture should make 6-8 meatballs.
Once the meatballs have formed, place them into the oven and let them bake or 15-18 minutes or until the internal temperature reads 150 degrees Fahrenheit.
Directions for Sauce
In a large, deep pan or pot, heat a few tbsp of olive oil over medium heat.
Add in the onion and the garlic and cook until the onion becomes translucent.
Once the onion has cooked, add in the tomato sauce and the coconut milk. Stir to incorporate.
Bring the mixture to a simmer and add in the tomato paste and date syrup.
Toss in the cilantro.
Reduce the heat and let cook.
Stir and add in the arrowroot starch to thicken.
Once the meatballs are finished in the oven, place them into the sauce and allow to finish cooking for another 5-7 minutes.
Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings and sweetness accordingly.
Once the meatballs are fully cooked and the sauce has thickened enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon, remove from the heat.
NOTE: sweet potato noodles are best when blanched. Do not eat them raw.
2 weeks ago these pants wouldn’t go past my hips. No idea how much I weigh, but I must be doing something right. 6 days into my Whole 30 and my energy levels are finally stabilising.
Now, time to go buy plants!
It’s been 3 months since I started changing what I eat and how often. The results are hella and I’m so proud of myself. Since June 16th, I’ve lost 30lbs, dropped 4 pants sizes, and 2 binder sizes. I’m the lowest weight I’ve been in the past 5 years and I could cry I’m so happy. Only one more pant size til I reach my goal 🏆 If I can do it, so can you 💪🏼
Finally! Almond milk made without carrageenan! For those of your who don’t know, carrageenan is commonly added to milks, ice creams, and yogurts for its thickening qualities, but has been known to cause inflammation and gastrointestinal issues. Until today, I was fairly certain all dairy free milks contained carrageenan. For those of you following whole 30, the unsweetened version from Califia Farms would be compliant.
Seasoning blend – 1 tsp of each: kosher salt, black pepper, lemon granules, dried oregano, granulated onion, granulated garlic, smoked paprika, and ancho chili powder
Freshly minced parsley or cilantro
Using the seasoning blend, fresh herbs, and lemon juice, and olive oil, create a marinade for the chicken thighs and let marinate for about 2 hours in the fridge, removing 30 minutes prior to grilling.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and heat a cast iron pan over medium high heat.
Sear the chicken thighs on each side to develop a crispy skin and finish in the oven until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
Never underestimate the power of a Whole 30! I am so pumped with my results from this go around. I won’t beat around the bush, I did this because I needed a reset in my sugar obsessed eating habits and I was also ready to ditch the few remaining pounds I gained during my pregnancy with Beatrix. Not to mention a closet full of clothes I couldn’t wear because they were too small.
If you didn’t catch my prep or meal planning posts, here’s a quick summary. The goal is to complete 30 days of a super clean diet - that means all the veggies, fruits, eggs and meat you want. That also means no sugar, alcohol, grains, dairy or legumes.
It also means a lot of planning, cooking and cleaning up, so if you have a partner for the Whole 30, it makes things way easier. Adam and I did this together and we are both so pleased!
The folks that created the Whole 30 really encourage you to stay away from the scale for the entire process, but when day 31 hit I was so excited to jump on and see if there was any weight loss. I could tell from the way my clothes fit that I probably dropped a couple pounds, but in total I lost ten pounds! I’m now down about five pounds from my pre-baby weight. HELL. YES! My before photo from above was taken in May (around 4 months after having a baby) and the after was yesterday (a week or so since our Whole 30 ended!)
I don’t have pre-Whole 30 measurements to compare with, but my tummy is much flatter and my boobs look smaller too (yess!!) Now I have access to so much more of my closet and It’s been so fun to pull old things out and be able to enjoy them again.
Internally I feel more energetic, almost like my body can tell it’s running on premium fuel. I wish I could say I slept better, but with two kids in my bed most nights, I’m not getting any long stretches of Zzzs.
ALSO WORTH NOTING
I have continued to breastfeed my daughter throughout the Whole 30. She’s 8 months now and had started some solid foods around the same time my thirty days began, so everything naturally fell into place. Because we’re well established with our breastfeeding routine, we didn’t notice any supply issues.
We were not 100% compliant with the rules. I ate bacon, deli meat and store bought mayo (which have off limit ingredients). I had a glass of wine on date night. And a cocktail. I ate chia seed pudding and made paleo pancakes. I had french fries here and there. But for my normal day in, day out meals, I really got what I wanted by eating more fresh, local foods. Since I’ve been buying more berries and veggies I’ve noticed my kids eating them as well!
I’m also getting better at sneaking in more veggies for breakfast (sauteed spinach and sweet potato) or with big veggie bowls. I think I’m getting to be a better cook too!
Would I suggest a Whole 30 to someone else? Absolutely! In fact my mom is starting her first one right now! Send this post to someone who might want to try it and check out these posts if you need a little help getting started! You can do it!
BakingWithBooks Does Whole30 - Red Curry Shrimp with Cashew Broccoli Slaw & Homemade Almond Sauce
I was craving something spicy with peanut sauce (and Whole30 says no peanuts) so almond sauce it was.
Ingredients for Curry Shrimp
Jumbo shrimp (the amount is up to you), peeled, deveined, tail off
Red curry paste mixed with a small amount of light olive oi
Kosher salt and pepper for seasoning
Ingredients for Almond Sauce
¾ cup almond butter
½ can coconut milk (unsweetened)
2 tsp red curry paste
2-3 pitted Medjool dates
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Pinch of kosher salt
Water - to thin it out to your desired consistency
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Marinate shrimp for approximately 30 minutes. While shrimp is marinating, prepare your sauce.
In a large bowl, combined all of the ingredients except the dates and water. Taste and adjust the flavor before adding everything to a blender, adding 1 date a time until you reach the desired sweetness. Use water to thin out the sauce to your desired consistency [though it should not be runny; it should be just thick enough to dress the slaw]
Heat a small amount of olive oil over medium high heat. Cook the shrimp until they start to gently curl. Do not overcook or else the shrimp will become chewy. They are done when they turn pink and the flesh is white.
Toss your sauce with the broccoli slaw, add in chopped cashews for crunch. Top with your shrimp, another drizzle of almond sauce and serve.
Can easily be made vegetarian or vegan by omitting the shrimp!
It’s Trans Day of Visibility! I have the privilege of being able to be safely out, but for those who don’t, this day is for you too. We stand by you, for you, and support you always. It’s ok to wait to come out, or to even just come out to yourself. You’re still hella valid and a rad trans friend 💙💖