Healthy Grain-Free Eggplant Vegetable Lasagna Bake

Confession: I love eggplant. Can’t get enough. It’s always been one of my mom’s favorite vegetables, and though I never ate it much as a kid, apparently that preference still got passed down to me somehow — but I’m not complaining!

Healthy Grain-Free Eggplant Vegetable Lasagna Bake // Naturally Lindsey

Healthy Grain-Free Eggplant Vegetable Lasagna Bake // Naturally Lindsey

I was craving some sort of Italian something, so I decided to take what was in my fridge and throw it together to make what ended up being a gorgeous layered eggplant “lasagna” — no gluten, no dairy, no nuts, seeds, or grains. Just vegetables and a little bit of homemade meat sauce, but you can omit the meat for a vegan/vegetarian option. Serious perfection.

Healthy Grain-Free Eggplant Vegetable Lasagna Bake // Naturally Lindsey

Healthy Grain-Free Eggplant Vegetable Lasagna Bake // Naturally Lindsey

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Mom’s Famous Chili

This is the chili recipe my mom has been making for our family since I was a child. Needless to say, it’s my favorite! I’m not a fan of overly saucy or heavy chili, and this recipe hits the spot. It’s hearty and comforting, but not weighed down with a whole bunch of unnecessary ingredients. I usually fix a batch in the crockpot before I leave for work in the morning. The only thing better than coming home to the smell of chili simmering is coming home to a wholesome dinner cooked and ready to go!

If you use lean grass feed/organic ground beef (which I highly suggest), there’s no need to drain it before adding to the crock pot. This recipe is easily doubled, which I recommend you do if feeding more than two people.

This recipe is:
• Gluten-free
• Dairy-free
• Soy-free
• Sugar-free

Mom's Famous Chili // Naturally Lindsey

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Paleo Bacon Beef

I got the idea for making this recipe from my Fast Paleo app when I stumbled across TGIPaleo’s Boston Baked Beef recipe. A Paleo spin on Boston baked beans (uh, yum), her recipe calls for 2-3 hours of simmer time. In the words of Sweet Brown “Ain’t nobody got time for that!” Needless to say, I made a few tweaks of my own.

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The recipe gets the basis of its flavor from unsulphured organic blackstrap molasses, a great source of nutrients like potassium, calcium, and iron – which I’m sure all of us could use more of! The kind I use is from Wholesome Sweetners, is fair trade certified, and like all blackstrap molasses ranks low on the glycemic index, giving you even more to feel good about. The addition of whole grain mustard and apple cider vinegar, or ACV, really balances out the flavor and gives the sauce quite a bit of tang. Though many of ACV’s health benefits come from its raw form as heat destroys the “mother,” it’s still a great staple to have in your kitchen to use for both cooking and everyday purposes. I actually take a 50/50 solution of Bragg’s Organic Raw ACV and filtered water in a shot glass every morning to help with digestion and balance pH levels and blood sugar – it also has the wonderful side effect of waking me up before I head out the door. So have a swig before you pour it in ;)

This is hearty take on a classic comfort food can be enjoyed over your choice of vegetable or grain, depending on how you roll. I’m trying to incorporate more glucose back into my diet so white rice, a “safe starch,” along with broccoli and peas seemed like the perfect fit. I ate the leftovers two days in a row, once cold wrapped in lettuce, and once (also cold) on its own. It’s really that good. As my boyfriend said after his first bite: “This one’s a keeper.”

This recipe is:
• Gluten-free
• Dairy-free
• Nut-free
• Soy-free
• Refined sugar-free

Paleo Bacon Beef

• 1 lb ground beef (I used 96/4)
• 8 thick slices uncured bacon, diced (or more as desired)
• 1 large yellow onion, diced
• 2 teaspoons sea salt
• 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 6 oz tomato paste
• 1/3 cup whole grain mustard
• 2 taplespoons honey
• 1/4 c unsulphered blackstrap molasses
• 1/2 c apple cider vinegar

1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium-high heat.
2. While the beef cooks, dice your bacon and onion. When the beef is browned, remove from heat. Let cool for five minutes and drain the drippings into a heavy bottomed pot.
3. Cook the bacon in the beef drippings until crisp. Add the onions and stir, cooking for a few minutes more until the onions start to turn translucent.
4. Add the molasses, tomato paste, mustard, honey, salt and pepper, and ACV and stir it all around, working quickly so the molasses doesn’t scorch. Reduce the heat to medium and stir until well-combined.
5. As I stated before, the original recipe says 2-3 hours but after 40 minutes mine was good to go. I think the sauce would have burned had it been much longer. So let simmer for as long as you have, checking occasionally, and serve as you wish!