Recipe Roundup: 50 Delicious Whole30 Recipes

50 Delicious Whole30 RecipesI learned an important lesson last year: In order to look and feel great, you have to fuel your body with nutrient-dense real foods. It sounds like such a no-brainer, but since my early teens, I stubbornly tried to fight this notion with the hope that I could lose weight by eating limitless pasta, 100-calorie snack packs and my favorite junk foods “in moderation.” And while technically these principles sometimes led to weight loss (depending on how much I was actually eating and whether or not I was exercising regularly), I was still left hungry and in a bad mood, with low energy, headaches and eczema for days.

In February 2014, I embarked on my first Whole30, eliminating gluten, dairy, soy, sugar, legumes and processed foods from my diet for 30 days. This was a challenge for me – not only because I love bread and pasta (and there is some variant of sugar in everything!), but also because I’m a picky eater and I had never really cooked before. Suddenly, I had switched to a heavily plant-based diet, which required me to experiment in the kitchen and try a lot of new things. To this day, I’m still figuring out how to balance Whole30 living with the occasional unhealthy craving, but through several rounds of the program, I’ve learned a lot about myself and I’ve greatly improved my cooking skills!

When people hear about the Whole30, one of the first questions they ask is What can you eat? The answer: A lot! Before Whole30, I never ate zucchini, green beans, cucumbers, or cabbage. I had no idea how to prepare sweet potatoes, cauliflower, bell peppers, or any protein other than eggs. I had never heard of a spiralizer, and thought that “poaching chicken” literally meant that I had to hunt and kill my own poultry. Therefore, if could complete 30 days of this program, anyone can do it!

Today, I’m going to share 50 of the recipes I enjoyed on the Whole30. (That’s right – 50 recipes!) Some of these will require slight variations in order to remain compliant, so I’ll make note of those as they pop up. As a rule of thumb, replace soy sauce with coconut aminos, don’t use the optional sweeteners or cheese if you’re sticking to the Whole30, and be mindful of what cooking fats you use. I’ll also share which of these recipes are regular favorites of mine. : )

Enjoy the recipe roundup and be sure to share with friends!

50 Delicious Whole30 Recipes

Soups

1. Watermelon Gazpacho (Our Savory Life)

2. Chilled Cantaloupe Soup (AllRecipes.com)

3. Creamy Dairy-Free Tomato Basil Soup (Paleo Comfort Foods) 

50 Delicious Whole30 Recipes

Salads

4. Moroccan Carrot Salad (@whole30recipes Instagram guest post by @bloemingfabulous) – **FAVORITE** 

5. Cucumber “Pasta” Salad (Holistically Engineered)

6. Pineapple Cabbage Slaw (@whole30recipes Instagram guest post by @whatjennyeats)

7. Red Cabbage Salad with Apples, Walnuts and Raisins (Clean and Delicious)

50 Delicious Whole30 Recipes

Sides

8. Lemon and Thyme Potato Wedges (Olive Tree Kitchen)

9. Roasted Cauliflower Steaks with Meyer Lemon Relish (Brooklyn Supper)

10. Sweet Potato Gnocchi (Lexi’s Clean Kitchen)– Tastes awesome with ghee!

11. Roasted Cauliflower Poppers (Whole Lifestyle Nutrition)– Replace butter with ghee. – **FAVORITE**

12. Shoestring Sweet Potatoes (Fit Foodie Finds)

13. Garlic Cabbage Steaks (Rockin Mom’s Kitchen)– **FAVORITE**

14. Butternut Squash Risotto (Paleo Grubs)

15. Moroccan Cauliflower Couscous (Unbageled)

16. Roasted Herby Spiralized Vegetables (Fit Foodie Finds) – **FAVORITE**

17. Creamy Dreamy Vegan Potato Salad (Max Pankow Fitness)

18. Cumin-Roasted Broccoli Spears (Daily Bites Blog)

19. Cauliflower Roasted in Dijon & Lemon Butter Sauce (Divalicious Recipes) – Replace butter with ghee. – **FAVORITE**

20. Cinnamon Roasted Sweet Potato & Apple (Consider The Leaf Turned)

21. Broccoli Fritters (@whole30recipes Instagram guest post by @happywifestyle)

22. Easy & Healthy Fried Plantains (Lexi’s Clean Kitchen) 

23. Sweet Potato Tater Tots (Paleo Grubs)

24. Garlic Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes” (Nom Nom Paleo) – Replace butter with ghee.

50 Delicious Whole30 Recipes

Vegetarian Main Dishes

25. Low-Carb Cauliflower Fried Rice (Amuse Your Bouche) – Replace soy sauce with coconut aminos. – **FAVORITE**

26. Zoodles and Creamy Cauliflower Sauce (J is For Judy)

27. Indian Pineapple Cauliflower Rice (Stupid Easy Paleo)

28. Spaghetti Squash Breakfast (Whole Fork)

29. Crispy Cauliflower Carrot Fritters with Smoky Garlic Aioli (Oh My Veggies)– Replace flour with almond flour and skip the Parmesan.

30. Breakfast Bowl (@whole30recipes Instagram guest post by @inexactscience)

31. Curried Cauliflower and Potatoes (Hello Fresh) – Skip the peas. – **FAVORITE**

50 Delicious Whole30 Recipes

Meaty Main Dishes

32. Coconut Lime Chicken Bites (Daily Bites Blog) – **FAVORITE**

33. Sweet and Sour Chicken (Paleo Leap)– Skip the “optional” honey.

34. Zesty Chicken Bites (Lexi’s Clean Kitchen)– **FAVORITE**

35. Whole30 Approved Burrito Bowl (Katrina Runs)

36. Moroccan Grilled Chicken Kabobs (Closet Cooking)

37. Lemon and Cilantro Calamari with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce (Meatified)

38. Chicken Piccata (Elana’s Pantry)– **FAVORITE**

39. Paleo Chicken “Alfredo” Pasta (Just Jessie B)

40. Chicken Fajita Stuffed Peppers (Holistically Engineered)– **FAVORITE**

41. Stovetop Pulled Tandoori Chicken (The Big Man’s World)

42. Baked Pesto Chicken Skewers (Fit Foodie Finds)

43. Tuesday Night Chicken (Popular Paleo)

44. Paleo Curry Lime Chicken (Plaid and Paleo)

45. Paleo Sesame Chicken (Consider The Leaf Turned)

46. Garlic Butter Chicken (Life Made Full) – **FAVORITE**

47. Coconut Crusted Mini-Schnitzel (1000 Lovely Things)

48. Paleo Italian Chicken Fingers (Tastes of Lizzy T’s)

49. Almond Crusted Chicken With Strawberry Balsamic Sauce (Cooking Classy) – Skip the bread crumbs and replace canola oil with extra light olive oil. I used almond flour.

50. Green Fajita Chicken (Meatified)

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Share your favorite Whole30 recipe links in the comments section below!

Whole30 Recap: Week 4

For those who began Whole30 on New Year’s Day, can you believe the month is almost over? For me, Week 4 was the week when the program became almost second nature. I still had a lot of temptation (here’s looking at you, free pizza and Chipotle), but I came out of the week strong. My pre-Whole30 ailments still aren’t completely eradicated – you’ll read more about that in a bit – but nevertheless, I know I’ve come a long way since we rang in the New Year.

Because I am planning a Whole60 through the month of February, I will still post an entire Week 5 recap next week, featuring Days 29-35. After Week 5, the recaps will get shorter. Instead of a day-by-day list of what I ate and how I felt, I will simply post my weekly takeaways/general feelings and a list of new recipes I tried and would recommend. (A full list of meals is going to get repetitive after a while because I’ve found some favorites that I will be making regularly!)

Enjoy this week’s batch of recipes and daily observations! I had a major attitude adjustment in Week 4 and started to get excited about cooking again. I hope you find some fun meal inspiration that excites you, too. If you’re new to this blog, be sure to check out my introductory post, as well as my recaps for Week 1Week 2 and Week 3.

Some disclaimers before you get started:

  • I am not a medical professional of any kind and I will not claim that what has worked for me will work for you. If you have any medical questions, please consult a professional.
  • This is not a full meal-plan for everyone following the Whole30. There are some days where I just can’t handle a large meal, so I might just stick to roasted veggies or something light. There are other days when I might eat a small (compliant) snack in between meals, and those snacks are not necessarily reported on my blog. Please listen to your body. We are all different!
  • I repeat meals that I enjoy. You will not be getting a list of 90 different dishes, mainly because I am a creature of habit and when something tastes good, I want to have it again! 🙂 However, I will still be testing out new recipes every week, while rotating in some of the old favorites.
  • You can follow along on my Instagram page, where I post meals and recipe ideas daily!

Whole 30 Weekly Recap | So It Must Be True

Day 22 (Jan. 22)

Feelings: When I looked in the mirror this morning, all I could think was, Wow, I look really pale. Then I realized that I wasn’t looking any paler than usual – my skin just isn’t as red and irritated as it used to be. I’ve battled with eczema my whole life, but it’s reassuring to see how significantly my healthier eating habits have improved my skin.

Whole30 Week 4 Recap

Breakfast: A bowl of strawberries and blueberries. (I was staying at my sister’s place and didn’t have the same food access as I do at home, but the night before, we picked up a few staples for me to keep there.)

Lunch: Moroccan Carrot Salad (inspired by @bloemingfabulous’s guest post on @whole30recipes Instagram feed, packed ahead of time) and applesauce. At that time, I was at a workshop where free pizza was served… and oh, did it smell delicious.

Dinner: Market Salad from a local salad/sandwich restaurant, with raisins, apple slices, oranges and grilled chicken.

Day 23 (Jan. 23)

Feelings: I had an early morning event, but still felt energized throughout the day. I was a little hungry, probably because of the lack of protein at breakfast, but overall I was in a good mood and felt productive. My willpower game was strong. We sponsored an event that catered from Chipotle, and it took every fiber of my being not to grab a bowl of rice and beans with cheese melted on top. Mmmmmm, melted cheese… where was I?

Breakfast: A bowl of strawberries and blueberries.

Lunch: Salad with mixed greens, red bell pepper, cucumber, grapes and hard-boiled egg. Thank goodness for the salad bar.

Dinner: Curry Roasted Cauliflower (inspired by @danikabrysha’s guest post on @whole30recipes Instagram feed) and a hard-boiled egg.

Day 24 (Jan. 24)

Feelings: Boundless energy! I don’t know where it’s coming from… I still don’t get enough sleep, but I definitely have way more energy at all times of the day than I did prior to this Whole30.

Breakfast: Apple with almond butter and cinnamon.

Lunch: Two hard-boiled eggs and a bowl of raspberries.

Dinner: Spinach salad with grilled chicken, oranges, cabbage, and carrots.

Day 25 (Jan. 25)

#SelfieQueen

#SelfieQueen

Feelings: I experienced the first headache I’ve had in a while, but I don’t think it had to do with my food choices. My entire family is prone to headaches, and while I think that sugar consumption makes mine happen more frequently, I also understand that there could be other reasons why I experience them. I was also a little bit stressed this morning, but found that I bounced back from that stress very quickly.

Breakfast: {gasp} I had a smoothie! My boyfriend mixed up a smoothie for me with strawberries, banana and spinach. If this breakfast choice bothers anyone, I urge you to visit this Whole30 blog post on the rules vs. recommendations.

Lunch: Moroccan Carrot Salad (inspired by @bloemingfabulous’s guest post on @whole30recipes Instagram feed) and a hard-boiled egg.

Dinner: Coconut Lime Chicken Bites (from Daily Bites Blog), roasted potatoes, and a bowl of grapes.

Day 26 (Jan. 26)

Feelings: I had an easier time waking up this morning and was in a good mood when I woke up. I felt a rediscovered sense of adventure today and was ready to try something new in the kitchen!

Breakfast: Blueberries and a hard-boiled egg.

Lunch: Roasted broccoli (cooked at 400F for 20 minutes in olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic) and a hard-boiled egg.

Whole30 Recap Week 4

Dinner: Cauliflower Fried Rice (from Amuse Your Bouche). This dish was off the chain – it really tasted like fried rice! (I used coconut aminos instead of soy sauce to keep this meal compliant.)

Day 27 (Jan. 27)

Whole30 Weekly Recap

Feelings: I woke up about an hour before my alarm to find that my skin was uncontrollably itchy. When I went back to sleep, I started having extremely graphic, gory nightmares. I’ve been known to have weird food dreams during the Whole30, but never something like this! Suffice to say, I didn’t sleep well. I’m thinking the breakout stemmed from a contact allergy, because it was limited to one area and the rest of my skin still looked and felt drastically improved.

Breakfast: Banana with almond butter, blueberries and a nectarine.

This was so good!

This was so good!

Lunch: Cauliflower Steak (from Brooklyn Supper) and two hard-boiled eggs. This cauliflower steak was amazing! I adjusted the relish a little to include rosemary instead of parsley and garlic instead of shallots. I highly recommend trying it!

Whole30 Weekly RecapDinner: Zesty Chicken Bites (from Lexi’s Clean Kitchen) and Sweet Potato Fries (from Life Made Full).

Day 28 (Jan. 28)

Feelings: My energy was back! My horrible skin reaction from the day before seemed to have healed somewhat and I had a much more restful night of sleep.
Breakfast: Bowl of blueberries and a hard-boiled egg.

Lunch: Moroccan Carrot Salad.

Whole30 Weekly Recap

Dinner: Mexican Cauliflower Rice (from Slender Kitchen).

Takeaways from the Week

  • As I’ve learned throughout my Whole30 journey, it is important to try new things! Last year, when I started Whole30, I was all about those sweet potato recipes… This time around, I joked that this was Cauliflower Week, as I attempted four separate cauliflower dishes throughout the week. I now know what the cauliflower rice fuss is all about!
  • Another thing I mentioned last week rang true again this week: You haveto be prepared for difficult food situations. Does it sometimes feel awkward to bring your own food to a lunchtime event? Yes. Is it difficult to turn down pizza and Chipotle in the same week? Oh, yes (at least if you’re me). But it would be even more difficult to say no to these non-compliant foods if I didn’t pack along my own meals or at least have a game plan? YES. At the beginning of the week, make a plan that will keep you accountable on the days when you know that you’re going to be tempted. Don’t face your temptations while hungry!
  • While my mood, skin and energy are all radically improved, I am no longer seeing the same body changes I remember from previous rounds of Whole30. I’m starting to feel like I’ve hit a plateau (although it’s hard to judge those changes when you see yourself every day), so I am going to start thinking more critically about if/when I’m snacking, what times I’m eating (sometimes I start dinner waylater than I should) and how much exercise I’m getting. Still, I am very proud of how far I’ve come, and have very high hopes for the rest of my Whole60!

Any Whole30ers with a favorite recipe to share? Sound off in the comments section below!