Ready or Not - 150+ Make-Ahead, Make-Over, and Make-Now Recipes
How much do I want to read more? 8/10
Nice book to get started with Paleo Cooking!
Presented in a unique, ludique, entertaining way.
A good companion along with other more theorical books on diets.
If you want the full scoop on how Paleo transmogrified me from an exhausted, belly-aching, and muffin-topped crank into a happy, healthy, and energized mom, you’ll have to buy, borrow, or steal a copy of my first book, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans.
this book is focused on one basic life skill that can make a huge impact on your health: cooking your own food—whether you’re ready to cook or not.
this book is designed to make cooking so easy, enjoyable, and fulfilling that it becomes a habit you’ll never want to break.
Over the millennia, humans came up with techniques like fermentation that not only preserved food but also made it more nutritious and delicious. Cooking became a ritual imbued with rich traditions. But it’s not just backwards-looking, either; it’s also an outlet for creativity and innovation. Cooking is an art form.
it makes you more mindful of the ingredients you’re putting in your body.
it’ll be meditative, too. Cooking’s a great way to unwind after a long day—and still produce something that’s nomtastically delicious.
Paleo is an ancestral approach that prioritizes eating real, whole, nutrient-dense foods.
At its core, Paleo is about trying to eat real, naturally occurring ingredients that are healthful rather than harmful. Biologically, our bodies respond best to real, whole, nutrient-dense foods like plants, meat, and seafood—all of them packed with the nutrients our bodies evolved to thrive on.
It was only after industrialized food production and lab-engineered edibles took over our diets that the ”diseases of civilization“ exploded. Today, wheat, soy, sugar, and highly processed foods continue to drive up rates of autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular disease, type-2 diabetes, and obesity. But by getting back to eating real food, we can stay healthier and happier.
Broad rules were established (no dairy! no rice! no beans!), and people stuck to them. It wasn’t a surprise that the rules worked. After all, who can argue with cutting out inflammatory foods and replacing them with wholesome ingredients like sustainably raised meat, wild seafood, pesticide-free vegetables and fruit, and healthy fats? By eliminating potentially harmful foods from our diets, these rules helped change our behaviors and boost our health.
We’re not all the same; every one of us is a unique snowflake, so we each need to figure out how different foods affect our individual health.
Paleo needs to be about eating as much variety as possible, and not about deprivation.
Here’s what I recommend: Treat Paleo as a starting point. Get yourself back to a clean slate by doing a dietary reset like the Whole30: Eliminate all grains, legumes, dairy, sugar, and chemically processed vegetable and seed oils from your diet for a month. Once a baseline of health is established, slowly reintroduce some of these foods (like dairy, white rice, and dark chocolate—not hyper-processed junk foods!) one at a time to see where you sit on the spectrum of food tolerance.
The recipes in this cookbook were designed with these principles in mind: healthfulness, mindfulness, practicality, and deliciousness—and zero patience for dogma or deprivation.
PRIORITIZE WHOLE, UNPROCESSED, NUTRIENT-RICH, NOURISHING FOODS.
EAT VEGETABLES, GRASS-FED AND PASTURED MEAT AND EGGS, WILD-CAUGHT SEAFOOD, HEALTHY FATS, FERMENTED FOODS, FRUIT, NUTS, SEEDS, AND SPICES.
AVOID FOODS THAT ARE LIKELY TO BE MORE HARMFUL THAN HEALTHFUL.
ESPECIALLY WHEN REGULARLY AND HEAVILY CONSUMED, FOODS LIKE GRAINS, DAIRY, SOY, SUGAR, AND PROCESSED SEED AND VEGETABLE OILS CAN TRIGGER INFLAMMATION, CAUSE DIGESTIVE PROBLEMS, OR DERAIL OUR NATURAL METABOLIC PROCESSES.
- Start with a hand-size portion of high-quality animal protein. The most sustainable, nutrient-rich, and flavorful meat comes from healthy beasts that chow on whatever nature intended them to eat, so prioritize grass-fed (and grass-finished) beef, bison, lamb and goat, pastured pork and poultry, and wild game. These animals offer meat that’s full of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and other nutrients. Eggs and wild-caught seafood are awesome sources of protein, too.
- Fill the rest of your plate with plants. Buy or grow in-season, pesticide-free produce, and supplement your haul with frozen organic veggies.
- Next, replace the grains that normally dominate your plate with even more vegetables. Pasta and bread are nutrient-poor compared to veggies—and many grains contain proteins like gluten that can cause gut issues and inflammation. Even if you don’t suffer from celiac disease, stuffing yourself with grains in place of vegetables, meat, or fish isn’t doing your health any favors.
- Choose healthy saturated fats that remain stable when exposed to heat, like ghee, coconut oil, and high-quality rendered animal fats. Olive oil and avocado oil are also great. Steer clear of vegetable and seed oils, which—believe it or not—are processed with chemical solvents like hexane. These oils are also high in omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids and highly susceptible to oxidation and rancidity.
- ne of the best things you can do for gut health is to eat fermented foods, so make sure you regularly plop some kimchi or sauerkraut on your plate, too.
- Enjoy fruit, nuts, and seeds, but don’t go overboard. Fruit is fine, but vegetables are generally more nutrient-rich and lower in sugar. And while nuts and seeds can add wonderful texture and flavor to your dishes, don’t go nuts with nuts.
- Try your best to keep ultra-processed foods off your plate, as they usually contain terrible-for-you additives like hydrogenated oils (a.k.a. trans fats), artificial dyes, chemical preservatives, high-fructose corn syrup, and/or soy. Most commercially available soy is genetically modified, contains isoflavones that can disrupt normal endocrine function, and is all-around awful for you. Stick to real food instead.
Q and A
Q: Do you ever get bored of Paleo?
M: A lot of people assume Paleo means deprivation—but it doesn’t.
Q: Do you eat rice and white potatoes? Aren’t they off-limits on the Paleo diet?
M: For people who don’t do well with excess carbohydrate intake, it may be worth cutting them out. However, an increasing number of Paleo eaters have found that as long as they’re active and healthy, these foods are unlikely to cause problems.
H: research now suggests that once white rice and potatoes are cooked and cooled, they form resistant starch that passes through our guts and feeds the beneficial bacteria in our microbiomes. Once we learned about this, we gradually started re-incorporating these foods back into our diets.
Q: Do you ever “cheat” while eating Paleo?
M: Paleo is like a compass or a GPS system that tells me which direction I need to go, but it doesn’t stop me from taking an occasional detour.
H: For example, Michelle, you can’t eat gluten without a severe reaction. So your dietary “detours” aren’t off-the-rails pizza-fests or pasta parties.
Q: Isn’t eating all that red meat unhealthy?
M: red meat isn’t necessarily bad for you. meat itself isn’t evil, it’s the method by which we farm it, and how we prepare it, and what we eat alongside it. Quality matters, too.
Q: Do you use Paleo sweeteners like stevia or lower-calorie sugar alcohols?
M: I don’t normally cook with any sweeteners other than some fruit, and occasionally a bit of honey or maple syrup.
Q: Why is it so important to eat fermented foods like kimchi, sauerkraut, and kombucha?
M: People have been fermenting stuff for generations not just because it preserves food; it also boosts umami, increases the bioavailability of nutrients, and helps repopulate the good bacteria in human guts.
HOW TO USE THIS BOOK!
- Get ready (purple). Basic building blocks to buy or make ahead of time.
- Ready recipies (green)
- Kinda Ready recipies (orange)
- Not Ready recipies (red) From 15 to 45 min
Get set - The stuff you need to cook anytime
The hardest part of cooking is getting started. Inertia is a powerful force.