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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Paleo Pen Pals April 2013 - Paleo Banana Pecan Muffins - A Guest Post from Wyatt

My pen pal stood me up this month. :( Oh well, it happens. Luckily, I am not leaving you empty handed! One of my past pen pals, Wyatt, was paired up with Kristina this month- neither of them have blogs, but Wyatt's recipe looks so yummy that I wanted to feature it here on What I Gather. Read on for Wyatt's post...

This month, Kristina gave me coconut flour.  Its a great flour substitute for Paleo baked goods, but I don't quite have the nuances down of how to use the right mixture.  So instead, I turned to the cookbook "Paleo Indulgences" by Tammy Credicott.  She's got an awesome banana-pecan recipe that in the past I've made waffles from.  On my previous attempt to make waffles, the batter kept sticking to the waffle iron, and I lost about 2/3 of the batter before I gave up.  On a whim, I decided to salvage the remaining batter and make muffins out of them.  

This worked out perfectly.  So this time, I planned to make the muffins from the get-go.

I followed her ingredient list, with the following changes: I added one more banana, and I added 1/4 cup of "life is good" chocolate chips.  I baked in the oven for 20 minutes at 350 deg.  Came out moist and yummy! The yield was exactly 1 dozen muffins.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Kevin's Famous Spicy Guacamole

We had another Paleo Pitch In at Clark Floyd CrossFit this week and between birth classes, cello lessons, school work and baby growing we decided to bring something quick and easy, but still totally tasty! Let me just say that I LOVE it when we have Paleo Pitch In's at the gym. You just bring one dish, but you get to eat, like, twenty awesome Paleo dishes. Okay, I will stop explaining to you how potlucks work as if you have never been to just gets me pretty excited. Especially if you just finished a tough workout and your dinner is right there waiting for you!

I don't mean to brag (yes I do), but everyone who has tried Kevin's guacamole has loved it. Maybe it is because he is from the Southwest? It definitely has a little kick to it and he gets it right every time. The flavor is perfect and it has the chunky texture that I prefer. Kevin is also famous for his Chocolate Chili and his Broccoli and Bacon Omelette.

We couldn't just show up with guacamole and a spoon, so we brought a veggie tray for dipping. Try finding a veggie tray without a huge tub of ranch dip in the middle. It is not possible! We threw the dip away and replaced it with a huge bowl of freshly made guacamole.

We've also enjoyed this guacamole with burgers, fish, plantain chips and even as a salad topping. What is your favorite way to use guacamole? Do you make your own with any special, secret ingredients?

Kevin's Famous Spicy Guacamole
Serves: 6 to 8
Time: 15 Minutes

2 avocados
1 plum tomato, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lime
Handful finely chopped cilantro
1 jalapeno, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
Salt and pepper to taste

Halve avocados and scoop avocado flesh into a large bowl. Mash well with a fork.
Add remaining ingredients and mix well with a fork until wee incorporated.

Friday, April 19, 2013

It's Here...eMeals iPhone App Launch!

You already know how much I love eMeals! It has kept this graduate student / full time employee / wife / blogger / pregnant mama from spending wasted time in front of the refrigerator wondering what to make for dinner every night. I am a major planner and I enjoy figuring out our meals for the week and making a grocery list, but things have been a little hectic in our household as we prepare for the big changes coming our way so I’ll take all the help I can get.

eMeals sends me an email each week with a week’s worth of tasty Paleo recipes and a corresponding grocery list, which really takes the guesswork out of shopping and cooking on those nights when I just can’t muster the time or energy (getting off the couch is quite difficult right now) to get my own culinary juices flowing. Plus, we aren’t wasting money on a bunch of extra food that ends up going bad because we didn’t have a plan for it

Well…eMeals just got even BETTER with the introduction of their iPhone app! Now I can access my weekly meal plan and shopping list straight from my phone. This is what I love so far about the app:
  • I no longer have to print the meal plan (although I sometimes choose to print them to save a favorite recipe for later). I can access the current and past week's meal plans from the eMeals app. Yea for saving trees!
  • If I want to “skip” a meal that week (if I am planning to go out or find one that just doesn’t appeal to me) I can choose the option to “Skip This Recipe” and it will remove the recipe from my weekly meal plan AND remove the items from my shopping list.
  • I can access the shopping list when I hit the grocery store and check items off as I go.
  • Speaking of the shopping list, I can even add my own items to the list so I don’t forget to pick up eggs, coconut milk and other household staples.

Ready to try the eMeals iPhone app for yourself? Click here to learn more.

Disclaimer: I was not compensated by eMeals for this post, but did receive a complimentary one-year membership as a part of their Blogger Network. All opinions are 100% my own and I would never share a product or service with you that I haven't purchased or used myself. eMeals links are affiliate links.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Paleo Pregnancy - Second Trimester Recap

This post is a bit overdue as I am already 33 weeks pregnant, but better late than never and soon enough I'll be holding my little baby and recapping my third trimester, which is still hard for me to believe.

I can totally see why they call the second timester the "honeymoon trimester". My first trimester was full of ups and downs. Once I hit about thirteen weeks, though, my morning sickness went from all day every day to every few days and by fourteen weeks it had disappeared completely. I knew people said it would get better, but when you are sick nonstop for weeks on end, it is hard to take their word for it. My appetite came back, too, and I was able to eat many of my favorite foods again and actually enjoy my meals. I was even able to come up with fun new recipes again (like this and this) without wanting to run screaming from the kitchen!

Speaking of food, once my appetite came back, those tell-tale pregnancy cravings came flooding in. I dreamt about digging into piles of cake and ice cream with my hands and filling a huge bowl with all of my favorite cereals. It goes without saying that some of my biggest cravings have been cereal, ice cream and cake...along with pizza, macaroni and cheese and chocolate. Luckily I was able to enjoy those foods in my dreams so I could stick to my Paleo diet during my waking hours. This post gives a good picture of what I currently eat in a day. We did make a lot more Paleo treats than usual, like sweet potato brownies and cookie dough bars, to satisfy my craving for sweets and I ate the occasional french fry and sushi roll without an ounce of regret.

Around 20 weeks by baby was finally getting big enough to squish my internal organs a bit and I started to experience some major pains in my gallbladder after eating most meals. I talked with my midwife and she said it is normal for pregnancy hormones and the cramped quarters to cause digestive issues. They did some additional testing on my liver and kidneys and everything came back normal so we just chalked it up to good ol' pregnancy. Kevin and I did cut back on a lot of the fattier cuts of meat (goodbye bacon and sausage) and I ate a bit of Greek yogurt and drank Kombucha to get some healthy bacteria into my system. Kevin made me cherry and cranberry juice cocktails, too, to clean our my digestive tract. I am not sure what worked, but eventually the baby moved or my diet changes kicked my digestive system back into gear because the pain slowly went away over the next few weeks.

I also experienced some extremely uncomfortable and painful itching on my back and scalp during the winter months. More talking with my midwife led me to the conclusion that this is also a normal symptom of pregnancy. On top of the already dry winter air, the baby is basically taking all of the nutrients I consume to fuel its growth and development. I am happy to suffer through some discomfort for my baby (I am sure this is only the beginning...), but I still sought out some relief. The best solution I came across was pure Vitamin E oil. I think it worked best when Kevin rubbed it on for me and, great husband that he is, he obliged.

Luckily, my other appointments with my midwife were less eventful. We went in once a month to hear the heartbeat and discuss our questions and concerns. We did have a second ultrasound at nineteen weeks and based on the results we declined any of the additional second trimester screenings for genetic disorders. My midwife assured us that nothing they tested for would be life threatening for me or for the baby so we politely declined. It was so exciting to see our little baby again and this time we could see cute little arms and legs and even the spinal cord, heart chambers and vertebrae. I had no idea you could see so much detail! This was probably the last peek we will get at our baby before it is born so we savored every moment.

Even though we don't get to see the baby again until he or she is born, around 18 weeks I started to feel those first tiny kicks. Like most first-time moms, it took me a few days to realize what I was feeling. They started out as very subtle movements, but within a few weeks even Kevin could feel the occasional kick. Near the end of my second trimester, I could literally see the kicks and watch my stomach move when the baby was rolling around in my belly.

Another happy happening of the second trimester is that my energy came bouncing back, too! By fifteen weeks, I had a burst of energy that lasted into the third trimester. Even though my body was changing, my workout times were improving and I was able to lift heavier weights than I expected. I got back in the pool and was able to swim much longer than I could in my first trimester. I ran more often, too, and even participated in a few 5K's. As the second trimester went on, though, and my belly grew larger, I definitely had to start modifying my workouts.

In CrossFit, I had to do push ups from my knees and gave up sit-ups for modified toes to bar. I also moved to a little mini box for my box jumps and used stronger bands for pull ups. As my weight went up a lot of movements became more difficult and eventually I was modifying almost everything. I just did whatever felt right and tried not to push myself too hard.

When running, I took a lot of walk breaks and slowed my pace down a bit to accommodate my changing body. The same went for swimming, too. I took a break every few laps and drank some water and just swam at whatever pace felt good.

I also found some great prenatal weight lifting and yoga videos  on YouTube, which I wrote about in this post on my favorite pregnancy resources. On the mornings when I just couldn't drag myself out of bed early enough to get to the gym, I could still get a good 30 minute workout in from the comfort of my own home.

Near the end of the second trimester I did experience some difficulty sleeping. I couldn't lie on my back anymore because it cut off my breathing so I was exclusively sleeping on my side. Even surrounded by pillows, it was hard to find a comfortable position and lying on one side for too long made my hips hurt, so I usually woke up at least four or five time each night to rearrange. Some nights I just gave up and came downstairs to watch 2:00am Law and Order reruns and that was usually enough to tire me out and get me back to sleep (no offense to Law and Order).

All in all, even with the few minor discomforts, my second trimester was a happy three months. I felt the baby move for the first time, I could enjoy food again, my energy came back with a vengeance and I loved to watch my baby bump grow from week to week! I continued to write about my pregnancy in Paleo Living Magazine throughout my second trimester. You can check out Paleo Living Magazine on Facebook or head on over to subscribe now if you are reading on our iPad.


If you would like to learn more about following a Paleo lifestyle during pregnancy, check out my first book, The Everything Paleo Pregnancy Book. I cover everything from which healthy, Paleo foods to focus on to get the most important nutrients for pregnancy, how certain foods can alleviate common pregnancy ailments, how to modify your workout plan during pregnancy and over 100 healthy recipes! The book is available in both paperback and Kindle versions through Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Did you start to feel like yourself again in the second trimester? Is the honeymoon trimester a god way to describe it?

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Chipotle Citrus Turkey Burgers

Alright, time for dinner! I usually shy away from turkey burgers because most turkey burgers taste pretty bland. There is just no flavor, no matter how many herbs and spices I throw into the mix.

Well, I FINALLY found a cure for the common turkey burger. We have had an influx of mandarin oranges in the fridge, which led to this recipe for Tuna Cakes with Mandarin Orange Salad, and I've still been trying to come up with ways to use them up. Kevin is the grill master so I told him about my idea for a turkey burger spiked with diced chipotle peppers (are you familiar with my affinity for chipotle?) and sweetened with mandarin orange zest and juice. He added his own spice mix, which included cilantro, sesame seeds, saffron, garlic and ginger!

These turkey burgers were the most flavorful I have ever eaten. After every bite, I could not stop talking about how good they were and Kevin was pretty happy with his creation, too. We made these on the grill pan because it was still pretty cold outside, but you could throw these on the barbecue grill, too and enjoy a little time outside in the sunshine!

Chipotle Citrus Turkey Burgers
Makes: 8 Burgers
Time: 25 Minutes

1 lb ground turkey
Juice of 1/2 lime
Juice of one mandarin orange
Zest of two mandarin oranges
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp cilantro
1 pinch saffron threads
1 tsp sesame seeds
1/2 tsp ginger
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat a well oiled grill pan over medium heat.
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well (we just used our hands).
Form turkey mixture into eight patties.
Cook for four minutes per side. Check one patty to make sure burgers are cooked through.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

March 2013 Paleo Pen Pals Roundup

Welcome to the Paleo Pen Pals Round-up for March! If you still haven't heard the buzz about Paleo Pen Pals, it is a network of like-minded paleo bloggers who swap ingredients each month, create a recipe and share their creations in the blogosphere. Check out our Facebook page to see what we are all about and to sign up. You can also read about Paleo Pen Pals on Three Diets One Dinner intro post or my intro post.

Co-Founder Brittanie, from Three Diets One Dinner, and I were so excited to see all of the tasty recipes that came through this month and I am happy to share them with you today. If you would like to become a part of Paleo Pen Pals and sign up for next month's food swap, click here to learn more.

Before we get to the recipes, I want to mention that Paleo Pen Pals is looking for sponsors. It takes a lot of effort and time to keep this running, and we have opened up an international network of Paleo bloggers, cooks and eaters. There are thousands of eyes on this network and they are all hungry for the caveman lifestyle. If you have a Paleo product that needs a voice, let's talk! Send us an email.

Read on for a roundup of March's recipes!!

Paleo Pen Pals is on Facebook!
Follow us on Twitter!

Sign up to be a part of Paleo Pen Pals in May by clicking here!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Primal Life Kit - 30 Products. 8 Discounts. $485 Value. Get it all for only $39!!!

You read it right...

The awesome folks at have put together an awesome bundle of ebooks, meal plans, magazine subscriptions and discount codes...a $485 value, but for this week only you can purchase them ALL for only $39 (did it mention that it is awesome)! This is an amazing deal and I cannot wait to dig into some of these books!

What's The Primal Life Kit?

When you purchase the $39 Primal Life Kit, you get $485 worth of the most popular and life-changing Primal and Paleo products:

> 22 ebooks
> 2 meal plans
> 3 magazine subscriptions
> 2 fitness programs
> 1 short audio book
> and 8 discount codes

These educational and potentially life-changing Primal and Paleo products are being sold at more than 90% off their original retail value for one week only - April 2 through April 9. Included in this Primal Life Kit are a meal plan made by Primal Blueprint, a recipe ebook by Bill and Hayley over at, a fitness program by Sarah Fragoso of Everyday Paleo, and a subscription to Paleo Magazine, among many other popular products. All the ebooks are in pdf format, so you can read them on your computer or the e-reader of your choice.

Please see the full list of what you'll get when you purchase this bundle below.

This $39 kit will give you all the tools you need to eat, cook, work out, and live Primally. Great if you are just starting out or if you have been into a Primal lifestyle for a while now and you're looking for some new ideas.

 > 12 Recipe and Meal Planning eBooks

  • 30-Day Intro to Paleo by Hayley Mason and Bill Staley of (authors of Make It Paleo) ($15)

  • Fast Paleo Top 100: The Top 100 Paleo and Primal Recipes Shared with FastPaleo in 2012 + 4 bonus ebooks (below) by James Gregory and Ute Mitchell of ($14.97)

  • Fast Paleo Top 100: The Top 10 Muffins of 2012 by James Gregory and Ute Mitchell of (free bonus ebook)

  • Fast Paleo Top 100: The Top 10 Beverages and Smoothies of 2012 + 4 bonus ebooks by James Gregory and Ute Mitchell of (free bonus ebook)

  • Fast Paleo Top 100: The Top 10 Cookies of 2012 by James Gregory and Ute Mitchell of (free bonus ebook)

  • Fast Paleo Top 100: The Top 10 Ice Creams of 2012 by James Gregory and Ute Mitchell of (free bonus ebook)

  • Paleo Power Lunch: Easy, Filling, & Delicious Workday Meal Strategies by Stormy Sweitzer of ($27.50)

  • The Paleo Breakfast Recipe Book: Over 100 Pages of Recipes by Suzanne Crawt of ($17)

  • Sow: Planting the Seeds for Health, Well Being, and a Superhero Life! by Joe Rignola of

> 4 Autoimmune and PCOS eBooks

  • 21-Day Paleo Cleanse: 3 Week Autoimmune Protocol Meal Plan by Neely Quinn of ($25)

  • Awaken: 30+ Egg-Free and Grain-Free Breakfasts by Karen Sorenson of  ($9.99)

  • The Autoimmune Paleo Plan: A Revolutionary Protocol to Rapidly Decrease Inflammation and Balance Your Immune System by Anne Angelone of ($4.99)

  • PCOS Unlocked: The Manual by Stefani Ruper of (special abridged 53 pages for this sale includes discount on remainder of her ebook) ($19)

> 5 Informational and How-To eBooks

  • Primal Deliverance: How Paleo Saved My Life From Addiction by James Gregory of ($14.97)

  • Primal Tightwad: Maximizing Your Health on a Minimal Budget by Carolyn Rush of ($14.95)

  • Free The Animal: How to Lose Weight and Fat on the Paleo Diet by Richard Nikoley of ($7.95)

> 2 Meal Plans

  • Primal Blueprint Primal Meal Plan - 1 month subscription to weekly Primal meal plans, grocery shopping lists, and the accompanying recipes for just $.01 from Mark Sisson and ($9.99)

  • 6-week Paleo Meal Plan - 1 free 6-Week Paleo Meal Plan from Paleoista, by Nell Stephenson (author of Paleoista: Gain Energy, Get Lean and Feel Fabulous with the Diet You Were Born to Eat and co-author of The Paleo Diet Cookbook) at ($59)

2 Fitness Programs

  • Sarah Fragoso's Everyday Paleo LifeFit fitness and nutrition training program - 1 month for $.01 from the author of Everyday Paleo and ($20) 

  • The Obstacle Course Race Training Program ebook by Stew Smith, CSCS and former Navy SEAL at ($16.99)

> 3 Magazines (Online Subscriptions)

  • The Performance Menu: Journal of Health & Athletic Excellence - Free 1 year subscription (12 issues) and 1 year of back issues from ($70)

  • Paleo Magazine - Free 6-month online subscription (3 issues) and access to all back issues ($29)

  • Paleo Living Magazine - Free 3-month (4 issues) iPad subscription (no expiration) ($15.96)

> 2 Bonuses

  • Primal Moms Look Good Naked by Peggy Emch ( - Audio recording of a portion of this new paperback book spoken by the author (Free)

  • The Modern No-Nonsense Guide to Paleo ebook by Alison Golden of ( - Three ebook chapters on Paleo shopping, kitchens, & lunches from her new book (Free)

> 8 Discounts

  • Kasandrinos Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 30% off Greek extra virgin olive oil from Tony Kasandrinos' family farm until December 31st, 2013

  • Bulletproof Coffee Kit - 20% off Monthly Bulletproof Coffee Kit (24 oz. of coffee and a 32-ounce bottle of MCT oil) from (no expiration date) ($9.80 value)

  • Primal Life Organics - 20% off organic, Paleo, gluten-free, vegan skincare products, hair care products, and deodorant until May 1st, 2013

  • Amrap Nutrition Refuel Bars - Buy one 8-Count box of Refuel Bars on Amazon and get 1 box free until April 30, 2013 ($23.95 value)

  • Optimum Performance Training - 15% off apparel, supplements, and online fitness training course until Dec 31, 2013

  • Paleo On The Go - 10% off Paleo food delivered to your home from until May 1

  • Squatty Potty – 15% off all products through April and 10% for the rest of 2013.

  • Sport Journals – 20% off WODbooks (for recording your workouts) until May 11, 2013

Get all of this (retail value $485) for just $39. Seriously.

That's normally the price of just one or two of these products! After you purchase the kit, you'll be sent an email with a link to all of the downloadable products, as well as the coupon codes for all of the discounted products.

NOTE: Due to the short duration of this sale, there will be no refunds. These products are downloadable ebooks, online magazine subscriptions, and discount codes. You will not be shipped any physical goods with your purchase of the Primal Life Kit.  Please contact with any questions about the Primal Life Kit.