Sunday, August 28, 2016

No-mato Hawaiian Barbecue Chicken

Your new BBQ is here.

This recipe was inspired by a Hawaiian barbecue dish I was told about. It sounded delicious, so I looked into how it was made. Sadly, half of the ingredients were things I couldn't eat. Sound familiar? Tomatoes, garlic, onion, soy sauce, the list goes on. So, while I couldn't make an exact flavor replica, this sauce is still pretty darn good and I love the unexpected pineapple hints.

Whenever I make a tomato-free recipe, pureed pumpkin is my go-to replacement. Just add some vinegar to give it the same bite as tomato. Maple syrup didn't seem like enough to create that recognizable barbecue sweetness, so I tossed in some coconut sugar. It was the perfect addition because coconut sugar tends to have a brown sugar flavor. Somehow, the use of these ingredients created the perfect barbecue base.

While the sweetness was there, the smokey flavor was missing. Throwing in bacon grease fixed that little problem. If you'd like an even smokier flavor, adding smoked paprika, if you tolerate it, really spices things up. I imagine chipotle pepper would pair well too. 

I couldn't have been happier with the result of this barbecue sauce. Sweet, slightly fruity, and just enough smokiness. This recipe will liven any dinner while keeping your stomach happy. Read below for the recipe.

Serves: 4-5
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours

  • 10 chicken legs
  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1 cups broth
  • 1/2 cup green onion chopped (green part only)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey
  • 2 Tbs. red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. bacon grease
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika (omit for AIP )
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F and take out a glass baking dish.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a pot and let simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the crushed garlic cloves.
  4. Allow the mixture to slightly cool before pouring into a blender or food processor.
  5. Blend until a sauce consistency is reached.
  6. Place the chicken legs into the baking dish and spoon the sauce over them evenly.
  7. Pour the broth over the chicken and place into the oven to bake for 1 hour, turning and basting the chicken every 15 minutes.

I hope you enjoy this chicken as much as we did! 
A Spunky Inquiry:
What's your favorite BBQ flavor?

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Banana Bread Cookies { egg, nut, dairy, and grain free }

* FTC Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you decide to make a purchase, I will receive compensation at no additional cost to you. Thank you!

I love a good, warm slice of banana bread.

But sometimes you don't feel like making an entire loaf. That's where these cookies come in. They take little effort to make and little time to bake; a great way to get your banana bread fix in a jiffy!

The night I came up with these cookies, I was desperate for a sweet treat. The only problem was that I didn't have enough almond butter to make Paleo Maple Almond Butter Cookies, no lemon for Paleo Lemon Cookies, and I didn't have any chocolate chips to go the chocolate chip cookie route. However, I did have multiple ripe bananas. 

I was forced to create little disks of banana bread heaven. So I got to work mashing some banana, adding a little of this and a little of that until I felt like the mixture had reached cookie dough consistency. After some coconut flour, flax seed meal, and various other flavor makers, a solid dough was formed.

Banana Bread Cookies really do taste just like a bite of banana bread! Warm and bread like in texture, these cookies will be the perfect sweet tooth satisfier. I love making them in a pinch and they really hit the spot. To get started making these, read below!

Yield: 8 cookies
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl mash the bananas very well until smooth then add the maple syrup.
  3. In a separate bowl combine remaining ingredients.
  4. Add the banana mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until smooth.
  5. Roll the dough into 8 dough balls.
  6. Place on the baking sheet and flatten slightly with the palm of your hand. 
  7. Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  8. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Enjoy the yummy bites of banana bread! Warm, cinnamon goodness awaits.
A Spunky Inquiry:
What quick treat do you use to satisfy your sweet tooth?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Rosemary Almond Crusted Salmon

* FTC Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you decide to make a purchase, I will receive compensation at no additional cost to you. Thank you!

Crunchy salmon is my new obsession.

At first the idea of adding a crust to my salmon didn't appeal to me. It reminded me too much of fish sticks, which I was never a fan of. But, after some recipe research, I was willing to give it a try. I'm so glad I did because it is delicious and nutritious! I'm so excited to share our version of almond crusted salmon with you.

I really do love to eat salmon. It leaves me feeling good and I know it's good for me. But it always seems like there are only so many ways you can doctor it up. Yup, we get stuck in the trusty recipe rut. So, it was time to use some good ole ingenuity and come up with something new!

The basis of this salmon recipe came from the fusion of a few different flavor combinations. There was rosemary fish, mustard maple glazed fish, and a simple almond crusted fish. I had a feeling that all of these flavors would go together beautifully. And to my surprise, they did!

A delicious crunch, an herbal kick, and a smooth sauce underneath. You have to try this for yourself, it defeats the oh-so-common dinner time monotony. We served ours with a side of vegetables and quinoa to make a wonderfully round meal. Read below to discover how to make this yummy salmon.

Serves: 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

  • 4 salmon fillets
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 Tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 Tbs. brown mustard
  • 1 Tbs. maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup almond flour/meal
  • 1 Tbs. rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt and pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F and place parchment paper and a cookie sheet.
  2. Mix olive oil, mustard, and maple syrup then spread mixture on the tops of your salmon fillets.
  3. Combine remaining ingredients and crumble your mixture on the tops of the fillets, making sure it sticks well to the oil mixture.
  4. Place fillets on the cookie sheet and into the oven to bake for 20 minutes or until the tops are slightly browned and the fish is done to your liking.
I can't wait for you to try this recipe! It's so good for you and yet it has the taste of comfort food. Enjoy!
A Spunky Inquiry:
Which salmon recipe do you make over and over again?

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Spicy Citrus Saffron Chicken

This chicken is the flavor of cultural fusion at its best.

Fragrant saffron takes you straight to Spain while the spicy, warming ginger draws you back to a taste of Asian cuisine. Citrus notes from the orange can allude to the food of various cultures across the globe. In short, this recipe is a world tour in your mouth.

Chicken is such a versatile meat to use, and I love experimenting with exotic flavors. Saffron is especially one of my favorites. It is so unique in flavor and a little goes a long way. I love the color and aroma it adds to a dish. Such a wonderful little spice deserves a partner in crime, ginger!

Ginger brightens up any dish and I felt it would be the perfect buddy for the saffron. I had heard of orange ginger chicken and also orange saffron chicken, so I thought, why not combine the two? The results were heavenly.

Spicy and savory all in one, this is the ultimate 'winner winner chicken dinner'. Not only is it delicious, but easy to prepare as well. Toss all of the ingredients into a container and let marinade for at least two hours or overnight. When you're ready to prepare it, bake it in the oven and baste every 15 minutes. It's that simple! Get started on your flavor world tour by reading the recipe below!

Serves: 4
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:

  • 10 chicken legs
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • juice and zest of two large oranges
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 1 Tbs. freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 2 generous pinches of saffron strands
  • 1 tsp. pepper (omit for AIP)
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • optional: 1 lb. baby carrots
  1. Combine all ingredients in a large container and let marinade for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  2. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 400 F and take out a 9 by 13 inch glass baking pan.
  3. Pour all ingredients into the pan and place in oven for 1 hour, basting the chicken with its marinade every 15 minutes. Remove garlic clove before serving.
That's all there is to it! Enjoy this exquisite dish, I know I can't wait to make it again.
A Spunky Inquiry:
What's your favorite cultural dish?

Monday, August 22, 2016

Low FODMAP Marinated Chicken

Who doesn't love a good marinated chicken?

I know I do, it reminds me of good memories and summer cookouts. This chicken is juicy and packed with that tangy flavor that leaves everyone asking for seconds. If you have a grill, now would be a good time to use it! If you don't, it can be made just as easily in a cast iron skillet, which is what we used this time around.

The great thing about this marinated chicken is that it contains no nightshades, no FODMAPs, and no sugar. This is a true-blue good for your tummy recipe! Also, if you don't have the time to marinade the chicken, the cast iron skillet method is the best way to go. When using the skillet, pour all of your marinade in with the chicken, allowing the sauce to quickly flavor the chicken.

We've had to use this 'emergency' method for a quick dinner and, quite to our surprise, it worked! The chicken was still so flavorful. So, this means there are three ways to cook this chicken: on the grill after marinating, in a skillet after marinating, and in the skillet with no wait time! This way, you can enjoy this recipe by preparing it the day before or throwing it together in a pinch. Now, we can all have a taste of summer whenever we want.

We enjoyed our chicken with green beans and a roasted mixture of turnip and Japanese sweet potato.
Serves: 4-6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

  • 4-6 chicken breasts
  • juice of half a lemon
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tbs. brown mustard
  • 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  1. Mix all of the ingredients together, making sure to pierce the chicken, and store in the refrigerator over night. Alternatively, this can also be made immediately, however marinating gives more flavor.
  2. Heat a cast iron skillet on medium high and place the chicken on the bottom, then pour the marinade sauce over the chicken. If grilling, baste the chicken with the marinade every 10 minutes.
  3. Cover the skillet with a lid and cook for 30 minutes, flipping the chicken after the first 15 minutes.
  4. After cooking, remove the garlic cloves and serve.
I love this recipe and I hope you do as well. Enjoy!
A Spunky Inquiry:
What are some of your summer cookout foods?

Low FODMAP Skillet Bacon Green Beans

Your green bean just got a whole lot tastier.

One of the easiest low FODMAP side dishes to make is green beans. Broccoli used to be my family's go-to, but it contains FODMAPs and is off the list for now. As with any frequently used side dish, you sometimes get bored with the repetitive flavor. Worry no longer my friend, there is a delicious solution!

By adding bacon and green onion to the dish, and cooking the green beans in the bacon grease, the yum factor goes through the roof. Ah bacon, it always saves the day. It makes all of your problems disappear. Can I get an amen? Amen!

This recipe couldn't be more simple. Take out your trusty skillet and cook some bacon. Then, steam your green beans. After they're done steaming, toss them in the leftover bacon grease in the skillet. Finally, add in your chopped bacon and green onion. Voila! You now have some wonderfully flavorful green beans.

Skillet green beans go well with just about any main course. Eat some with a good burger. Serve them alongside salmon. This is a side dish perfect for any of your chicken recipes. Get started cooking below!

Serves: 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

  • 1 bag of frozen green beans
  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onion
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a skillet, cook bacon slices until crispy.
  2. Remove cooked bacon and save the bacon grease.
  3. Steam the green beans until tender.
  4. Toss the green beans in the skillet with the bacon grease while it is still warm and add the green onion and chopped bacon. Salt and pepper to your liking.
I love using this recipe for a side dish, it's just so good. I hope you enjoy it!
A Spunky Inquiry:
What's your go-to side dish?

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Paleo Lemon Cookies ( With Lot's of Flavor Variations! )

* FTC Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you decide to make a purchase, I will receive compensation at no additional cost to you. Thank you! 

Need a little zest in your life?

These cookies are the perfect solution. Any lemon dessert is automatically my favorite. It must be the interestingly delicious combination of sweet and sour. Mix that with a warm cookie and you've got a winner!

Packed with lemon zest, our lemon cookies are a wonderfully refreshing treat. They have that sort of melt-in-your-mouth, chewy texture, which I really love, don't you? I mean, a cookie isn't a cookie if it's not chewy. What's with cookies that have a cake-like texture? Shouldn't those just be called 'cakies'? Long live the chewy cookie *end
rant. Ahem, anyway, let's continue.

And if these cookies aren't already good enough, there are ways you could add a little more flavor dazzle.

 For example, you could toss in some blueberries or add white chocolate chips, if that's your style. You could even use raspberries or replace some of the lemon juice and zest with lime. OR, you could add shredded coconut and coconut chips! The options are endless. I don't know about you, but my mouth is watering Leave a comment below and share if you've tried one of these variations (or one of your own) and tell us how it turned out!

Read below to get started baking these little delights.

Yield: 8 cookies
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 1 1/3 cups almond flour
  • 2 Tbs. coconut flour 
  • 1/2 Tbs. grass-fed gelatin
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • pinch of sea salt
  • zest of 2 lemons
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Optional Add-Ins: blueberries, raspberries, lime, coconut, white chocolate chips, etc.
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well until a dough forms.
  3. Roll the dough into 8 balls, place them on the baking sheet, and slightly flatten each with the palm of your hand.
  4. Place into oven and bake for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Enjoy these zesty treats and don't forget to comment if you try one of the variations or invent your own!
A Spunky Inquiry:
Do you prefer cookies or 'cakies'?