Tag Archives: entree

  1. Greek Gyro Meatballs {Paleo-friendly}

    Greek Gyro Meatballs

    Greek Gyro Meatballs

    These Greek Gyro Meatballs aren’t your standard ground meat Greek meatballs, instead we are bringing the flavor and more importantly the texture of gyro meat. So you can skip the multiple steps and the need for delicate, thinly sliced meat and condense the work into these tasty bites!

    My love for Greek food runs very very deep, you guys know this. Last year when I created, basically the best homemade gyro ever, I realized that I had been sorely missing out for basically an entire lifetime. Growing up Greek there were loads of recipes and dishes that were handed down from generation to generation, things we just always grew up eating – souvlaki, avgolemono soup, lamb meatballs, pastitsio, leg of lamb, Greek Potato Salad and that list goes on and on.

    Though we all loved it very much, gyro wasn’t exactly one of those foods, it just wasn’t part of my family’s Greek food repertoire. Souvlaki was always the go to for this time of meal and if and when gyro was served, at our house, it was the store bought stuff (eeeeek over-processed, gluten-containing and not so good – so, I always passed). When I broke into the homemade gyro game, after years of being without it, it quickly became a dish that is requested every time I am home in NY visiting my family.

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  2. Cast Iron Crispy Chicken Thighs

    These Cast Iron Crispy Chicken Thighs are insanely simple, plus ready in under 30 minutes this super crispy, crackly and epically tasty chicken is a great weeknight dinner option.

    Cast Iron Crispy Chicken Thighs

    Cast Iron Crispy Chicken Thighs

    In my continued efforts to bring you more of the simple, easy dishes that I cook on the weekly here in our house, along with solid fuss-free options for those of you transitioning to a more whole food focused, real food lifestyle – today, I give you a personal favorite of ours: Cast Iron Crispy Chicken Thighs.

    These crispy, crackly-skinned chicken thighs are a staple around here and with varying spices and flavors, along with your desired sides, these are a simple weeknight option that you will never tire of. Plus it’s ready in under 30 minutes.

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  3. Lamb Ragù {Paleo and Gluten-free}

    Lamb Ragù {Paleo and Gluten-free}

    Lamb Ragù {Paleo and Gluten-free}

    The comforts of food and it’s universal ability to connect us, has constantly come up as of recent, reminding me that this is one of the core reasons that I have found such a true and passionate love for cooking, food and more importantly serving the people I love.

    This winter in particular I have noticed my cravings and my desires for food have changed quite drastically from previous seasons. I know, in part, some of that comes from the distinct and more winter-like season we have actually been experiencing here in Southern California, complete with rain storms and lots of cool, grey days. But it also occurred to me very suddenly as I was writing this, that in a time when there is so much uncertainty and unrest, so much aggression and fear, we are finding the need and desire for comfort and love wherever we can find it.

    I was watching Michael Pollan’s Netflix series, Cooked, the other night, and while I can’t recall which episode in particular, of the four, that I heard this in, he so brilliantly and matter-of-factly said at some point “It’s no longer a given that people will cook.” I had never really thought about that, given the way that I grew up and the lifestyle choices I have made for myself. But, for centuries cooking was a given, it was absolutely obligatory to our survival. We had to cook in order to eat and we need to eat in order to live! I realized as these words touched my ears that this unknowingly is probably the largest part of what I enjoy so much about cooking every day. About cooking for the people I love. It feels like a gift! As a woman that has no children, cooking for other people is my moment to feel as if I am giving the gift of life. Because food IS life. It IS love.

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  4. Gluten-free Pastitsio (Greek-Style Baked Pasta / Lasagna)

    Gluten-free Pastitsio (Greek-Style Baked Pasta / Lasagna)

    Gluten-free Pastitsio (Greek-Style Baked Pasta / Lasagna)

    I literally cannot believe that after nearly 7 years of blogging and sharing recipes here with you, that I have never shared this one. It’s literally one of my MOST favorite foods ever. Gluten-free Pastitsio (pa-STEE-tsee-oh), a Greek-Style Baked Pasta / Lasagna, of sort, this is 100% my kind of comfort food. A Christmas dinner tradition, this is the food I grew up eating for the holidays. My Yia Yia always made an incredible tray of pastitsio and since her passing, we can always count on my mother to manage the task and do it as if she herself was the Greek one. Years ago, when I discovered my gluten intolerance, my mom so graciously tweaked the family recipe to be made gluten-free and I never had to be without. Overtime I have made it myself and continued to slightly adjust things and I am so honored to be sharing it with all of you, finally.

    With layers of ground meat (beef or lamb) and pasta and a creamy, puffy, eggy, cheesy béchamel on top, there are hints of warming cinnamon throughout the entire dish and then it’s baked to perfection. This dish steps in where casseroles and lasagna leave off. Traditionally made with bucatini, a long tubular pasta laid out going in the same direction, I make mine gluten-free using instead an organic brown rice penne. In place of regular flour in the béchamel, I use a gluten-free all-purpose blend.

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  5. Slow Cooker Fall Carnitas Tacos {Grain-free}

    Disclosure: Post sponsored by Crock-Pot® brand slow cooker & Mirum Shopper, but all opinions are my own. Please see below for additional disclosure.

    Slow Cooker Fall Carnitas Tacos {Grain-free}

    Slow Cooker Fall Carnitas Tacos {Grain-free}

    Besides the usual fall foods we all get excited about, pumpkin-spiced everything, apples everywhere and of course, squash, I personally find most exciting, that fall once again opens the door to comfort food! Those soul-warming, hot, hearty meals that feel like a hug from your favorite family member.

    Fall always brings me back to aromatic, warming meals that celebrate the slowing down that comes with the cooler weather. I have always loved and admired that Mexican cuisine not only celebrates creative and powerful flavors, but also it’s the kind of food that brings family together with “oohs and ahhhs”. Meals featuring meats typically cooked all day, tended to with care in anticipation of the entire family coming together and celebrating. These Slow Cooker Fall Carnitas Tacos bring together classic flavors with an unexpected twist from traditional fall ingredients.

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  6. Skillet Roasted Chicken Thighs with Balsamic Fig Compote

    Skillet Roasted Chicken Thighs with Balsamic Fig Compote

    Skillet Roasted Chicken Thighs with Balsamic Fig Compote

    Our massive fig tree is doing it’s due diligence and providing an ungodly amount of fruit for us, once again this year. So, it’s time to get creative and bring my best fig game. I’ve made plenty of sweet dessert things with figs over the years, but at my core I am a savory girl. I really love a good savory dish that highlights the rich, sweet flavor of this beautiful fruit.

    These Skillet Roasted Chicken Thighs with Balsamic Fig Compote may seem like a fancy, fussy meal, but ready in just about 30 minutes means you could make this on a weeknight, even. Oooh, you fancy!

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  7. Moroccan Mint Rice with Spiced Chicken Skewers

    Moroccan Mint Rice with Spiced Chicken Skewers

    Moroccan Mint Rice with Spiced Chicken Skewers

    I am always looking for fun, inspired and unique ways to up my culinary creativity game, without too much extra fuss. Enter tea. I find tea-infusing to take the flavor profiles of recipes to new heights, with little to no extra work and the flavor combinations truly are endless.

    Moroccan Mint Rice with Spiced Chicken Skewers

    This Moroccan Mint Tea infused rice is the perfect example. Beyond boiling some water and infusing the tea for 3-5 minutes, that’s about it for extra work. The rice cooks as usual and you are left with an incredibly flavorful dish, that will knock your socks off.

    After sipping on a steamy mug of this flavorful Moroccan Mint Tea from Stash Tea, a beautiful blend of both mint and green teas with a hint of lemongrass flavor, I found I was inspired to create a meal focused on the very essence of the tea. Morocco. The rice is fluffy and fully of subtle Moroccan flavors from the mint to the spices and the flecks of sweet raisins and the crunchy toasted pine nuts. All of this pairs perfectly with the Moroccan Spiced Grilled Chicken Skewers which elevate this to a meal. If you want to go deep into the Moroccan flavors, I recommend adding some preserved lemons when serving.

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  8. Greek Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki {gluten-free, paleo-friendly}

    Greek Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki

    Greek Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki

    I am back in New York right now, visiting my family for the week. I’ve been home but a couple of days and it’s been jam-packed with family, friends, fun and of course – eating. We have yet to fill our faces with a Greek feast, but I know it’s coming, that’s always on my MUST-HAVE list when I am home.

    In moving to California over three years ago, I have found myself learning how to recreate some of my most favorite Greek dishes that I grew up eating, as well as many that I didn’t. To me, Greek food is the flavor of family and comfort and it’s the taste of home. Good homemade Greek food is always what I crave when I am feeling homesick and missing my family. Lamb is certainly a Greek favorite and while we traditionally enjoy leg of lamb roasted or grilled, I have really come to love ground lamb, as meatballs, in homemade gyro meat, in moussaka or especially these tasty burgers.

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  9. Turkey Club Chopped Salad with Aioli Vinaigrette {Paleo-friendly}

    Turkey Club Chopped Salad with Aioli Vinaigrette {Paleo-friendly}

    Turkey Club Chopped Salad with Aioli Vinaigrette {Paleo-friendly}

    I have jokingly said this before, but I truly, deep down, really mean it. My husband has become somewhat of a muse for me in the kitchen. Or one of my muses I should say. First and foremost, from a heavily selfish place, my own autoimmune conditions, food intolerances and sensitivities are my biggest creative driving force when it comes to recipe development. I also, of course, find so much joy in creating for all of you and your varying dietary challenges and lifestyles. All that said, my husband happens to be one of those more and more rare specimens whom isn’t afflicted with any food allergies or issues. He’s a tank, he can eat anything and everything, he’s healthy as a horse and he generally doesn’t have to worry too much when it comes to food.

    He is, as he says it “on the Beth plan”, at home, as I do all of the cooking and I generally don’t hear a complaint out of him. However, when we eat at restaurants some of his decision-making is so far askew from my own and how we eat at home, that I can (apparently) look at him like he has 3 heads, while he orders. It’s mostly a curiosity of how and why he would still want certain things after eating how we do, I am always curious how eating a bunch of starchy, grainy carbs before a meal can feel good, when he generally eats grain-free at home. I get it though, he didn’t exactly sign up to eat this way, it’s somewhat by default. But, I digress, I don’t give him too much shit, however I do take note. I take these opportunities to know that I can come home and recreate certain foods to be more healthful, to remove some unneeded processed foods and to hopefully win him over with an even better, cleaner version. It’s a game of sorts for me and the winner is always him.

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  10. Grain-free Thai Beef Bowls {Paleo-friendly}

    Grain-Free Thai Beef Bowls
    Grain-Free Thai Beef Bowls

    I know for many of you with families and busy schedules, though the summer is supposed to be about relaxing and chilling, somehow before you know it, the schedule fills up and you are going non-stop. Dinners are eaten on the run and you are quite literally setting up your digestion for a rough go. While it’s far easier said then done, to slow down, I think much of this action can take place with meal planning and preparing meals that can me made start to finish in under 30 minutes. Read the rest of this entry »

  11. Gluten-free Mediterranean Flatbread

    Gluten-free Mediterranean Flatbread

    Gluten-free Mediterranean Flatbread

    Did you know that May is Celiac Awareness Month? I shared the following over on my Instagram account but I thought it was worth mentioning here, as well.

    While I discovered my own severe gluten intolerance over 11 years ago, I was actually never properly tested for Celiac (until it was too late) and now as many years later, as additional health issues have shown up to the party, many of which you guys have read about right here on the website – I now certainly suspect Celiac to be the underlying cause. (Though I denied this truth for many years)

    That said, frankly speaking, my 11 year journey of eating 100% gluten-free and guiding others on their path, no matter the need, it has always been about celebrating food, exploring ingredients and hopefully encouraging others to get excited to be in the kitchen and create. Fresh, seasonal, nutrient-dense whole foods – to me it’s all about the amazing things that are naturally gluten-free, rather than supplementing with overly processed substitutes.

    That said, given the nature of my work and the fact that not everyone has the ability to work from home, cook all three meals a day completely from scratch and that many of you have a whole family to feed – I am also always on the look out for gluten-free products that will make life easier, while not being loaded with terrifying ingredients. Read the rest of this entry »

  12. Chicken Kapama – Greek Braised Cinnamon Chicken

    Chicken Kapama - Greek Braised Cinnamon Chicken

    Chicken Kapama - Greek Braised Cinnamon Chicken

    I don’t have the best memory, I never have. I forget things easily, but my memories surrounding foods and scents, especially with family – those are strong. I still remember the very distinct aromas of my Great Yia Yia’s home. The basement often smelled of chocolate, the living room of butterscotch candies and the kitchen, of so many amazing Greek flavors. Sometimes it would be Greek pastries or bread, often there was a stew or soup bubbling away or greens she plucked from the yard cooking down in some tomato sauce.

    Chicken Kapama - Greek Braised Cinnamon Chicken

    Growing up in a Greek family meant lots of traditional Greek dishes passed down through the generations, most without a written recipe anywhere to be found. Some dishes, like this one, Chicken Kapama {kah-pah-MAH},  I can still remember both my Great YiaYia and my YiaYia and eventually my parents, making for us. I can very clearly recall the distinct aroma the house would be filled with. The warming, comforting scent of cinnamon when mixed with tomato, to this day warms my heart and brings a smile to my face. This unique flavor combo pops up in several classic Greek dishes and it is a favorite of mine. It smells like home.

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  13. Grain-free Baja Fish Taco Bowl {Paleo-friendly}

    Grain-free Baja Fish Taco Bowl {Paleo}

    Grain-free Baja Fish Taco Bowl {Paleo}

    For most of my life, I have always had a (totally rational) fear of fried foods, something I can say I happily accepted and followed. It wasn’t until this past year or so that I finally experimented with for-real frying at home, beyond a simple pan-fry. Besides the occasional french fry indulgence, I never really found myself drawn to deep-fried anything. It just was never my thing. But to be totally honest, beyond the fact that I intuitively never liked how fried foods made me feel, it was mostly because of the scary calories and fat. And while calories and fat should absolutely be a valid concern, in excess, after spending time truly learning about fats and oils in nutritional therapy school program, I have learned what we should really fear more than these numbers, instead are the oils themselves and the havoc that they can wreak on our bodies and our health. That old saying ‘quality not quantity’, has really never been more appropriate.

    At most restaurants, even the nicest of places and honestly in most people’s homes, fried foods are generally cooked in denatured vegetable and seed oils. These are usually highly refined polyunsaturated fats that are highly unstable, especially in high heats. Often they are hydrogenated and when exposed to heat they oxidize and go rancid very quickly and form free radicals. “These chaotic, skewed fatty acid molecules, now in the form of free radicals, wreak havoc on the body attacking and damaging DNA and RNA, cell membranes, vascular walls, and red blood cells, all of which cascade into deeper physiological damage such as tumor formation, accelerated aging, arterial plaque accumulation, autoimmune imbalances, and more!”[1] WOAH – just woah, right? My life-long intuition-led opinion on fried foods was definitely not for nothing.

    Now, before we get into this recipe, I am certainly not advocating that fried foods, even in healthful oils, are something we should consume often. Like sweets and treats, even of the more healthy variety, this type of cooking falls into the category of once-in-a-while eating. But, being totally afraid of something and never being able to enjoy it, that doesn’t really feel good either and it certainly isn’t a lifestyle I ever want to live or promote. However, these curiosities for a better option, this is usually how I manage to come up with an alternative, a new way to enjoy something one-in-a-while that I never get to, but in a much more health-minded approach.

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  14. Spring Cauliflower Rice Risotto Bake with Chicken

    Spring Cauliflower Rice Risotto Bake with Chicken

    Despite the fact that we are well into spring now, Southern California has had it a bit twisted. Since I arrived back home from my travels to NY last week, it’s been mostly grey, rainy and cool. While I would have loved this weather in December and January, I will take it now. It’s a really nice change of pace. A great reason to pull out some sweaters and it’s also a great excuse to enjoy some real comforting foods.

    Spring Cauliflower Rice Risotto Bake with Chicken

    Of all things I was craving a casserole. I know. What is it 1985? There is just something so comforting and cozy about a meal you can dump into a pan, bake and enjoy. It’s childhood for those of us in our 30s. I was also dreaming of a good creamy spring risotto, one of my favorite foods. While rice isn’t off limits for me, I do try to be mindful of how many grains I consume. I just feel better when my belly isn’t bloated from the carbs. Hence why I am OBSESSED with cauliflower rice. It’s so crazy versatile, so super easy to make and it’s incredible how delicious it is. If you have a Trader Joe’s near you, the Organic Frozen Cauliflower Rice is an amazing quick option for when you don’t want to lug out the food processor. I have used it in this recipe before and it’s perfect!

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  15. 30-Minute Sweet Potato and Kale Coconut Curry {Gluten-free and Vegan}

    30-Minute Sweet Potato and Kale Coconut Curry {Gluten-free and Vegan}

    I have been all about the simple healthy one-pot meals, as of late. Life has been hectic for us. Lots of work, deadlines, house guests every two to three weeks, commitments, shows and so on. I am certainly not complaining, such is the life of the self employed. But, some days by the time I am done cooking and creating recipes for the blog, editing photos and writing back all the emails – by dinner I am actually just too exhausted to make any sort of feast. The sad truth is that as a food blogger sometimes my own meals get forgotten, I am so focused on making the recipes that I have planned for the blog to share with all of you. Plus,the idea of tons of prep, lots of steps, loads of dishes – it all seems overwhelming and unwelcomed at the end of a busy day, especially a day that included much of just that.

    30-Minute Sweet Potato and Kale Coconut Curry {Gluten-free and Vegan}

    A good 30-minute, one-pot meal means that, besides a few minutes for cutting up a few ingredients and dirtying a cutting board or knife, dinner is done before you can blink an eye. Just like that, you can sit down and enjoy a nutritious home-cooked meal with your love and the clean up after is next to nothing. Enter this super easy 30-minute Sweet Potato and Kale Coconut Curry.

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  16. Sprouted Quinoa Bowl with Kale Almond Pesto {Gluten-free and Vegan}

    Sprouted Quinoa Bowl with Kale Almond Pesto {Gluten-free and Vegan}
    Since I have started sprouting foods myself, a few months back, I have been pretty excited not only with how much more delicious so many of my favorite foods are, but how much easier they have been to digest. Sprouting seeds and beans especially, have seriously reduced the amount of bloating I have felt with certain foods. Sprouted quinoa is one of my absolute favorites to sprout. It’s super simple and I love knowing that I am maximizing the full nutritional benefits of the quinoa this way. Be sure to check out my recent post on how-to sprout, to read more about why this is and how to do it.
    Sprouted Quinoa Bowl with Kale Almond Pesto {Gluten-free and Vegan}

    This super easy, vibrantly-colored quinoa bowl is so easy to throw together and it’s full of so many amazing flavors. Seriously, if you don’t count the sprouting time, you can have this for dinner – completely made and on the table in under 30 minutes. It’s just that easy. Besides the food processor to make the pesto, it’s a one pot meal, which I am ALL about. I love easy meals like this, where it can all cook in one pot and your entire meal is in one bowl. Doesn’t get much easier than that.

    With all of the many different greens we’ve been getting in our CSA box each week I have actually made variations on this recipe too, last week I actually made it with swiss chard instead of the kale and it was just as amazing. I know arugula or spinach would be incredible, too.

    Sprouted Quinoa Bowl with Kale Almond Pesto {Gluten-free and Vegan}

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