Hi hi beautiful souls! It is the most magical beautiful September 1st I think I’ve ever experienced. Tonight I took a SoulCycle class and my instructor kept saying, “This will be the best September of your life.” Knowing that I’m going into this month with 4 events and a trip to Ann Arbor, Michigan, I’d say it probably is going to be the best September yet.
Today not only is it the first day of a new month and the start of new beginnings but also day 1 of another Whole30 (now day 2 as I post this). If you guys haven’t heard of Whole30, it’s a 30 day reset where you eliminate certain food groups that may be having a “negative impact on your health and fitness without you even knowing it“. I never, ever like to refer to it as a diet but rather say I’m eliminating certain food groups from my current lifestyle, which personally, I don’t really mind at all (except in social situations or traveling – of course). I pretty much eat Whole30 when I cook for myself anyways.
I completed the Whole30 – to a certain degree – in January, although on day 7 I was sick and ate gluten (bread) and on day 28 it was my birthday so naturally, I had cocktails, dairy and gluten – just living my best life!
Whole30 is usually very popular in January (when people are recovering from the holidays) and September (when summer comes to an end). After I completed it in January, I knew that at some point in my life I would want to do it again. So, here we are friends!
While some people look to Whole30 to get rid of excess sugar or gluten in their lives, I did it for a few other reasons.
The last two months I’ve been spending far too much money on food, I’ve felt very swollen and bloated in the last few weeks and beyond and I felt as if I was constantly craving sugar mid-day or after dinner. I also love setting attainable goals for myself and challenging myself to see if I really can push past certain barriers. I hear so many people talk about how they could “never do” Whole30 and then I think of how there are so many harder things people in this world have to face than giving up grains, gluten, dairy and sugar for 30 freaking days. You can do anything you set your mind to for 30 days, and I think completing a Whole30 is proof of that.
After trying Whole30 out in January, I found so many products that made food FUN, EASY and SO DELICIOUS. I’ll add that within the past 8 months, I have incorporated “Whole30 compliant” and paleo meals into my lifestyle so much more and to be honest, it’s my favorite way to eat. My skin clears up, my digestion is better and the best part of all – I spend less money eating out and spend more time in the kitchen.
So to get to the meat (no pun intended) of this post: I want to share with you some of my FAVORITE products that I 10/10 recommend to you if you’re: a. doing Whole30 b. want cleaner condiments/sauces/etc. c. are interested in paleo foods d. are curious in what I’m loving lately!
I am a huge fan of Primal Kitchen because they’ve basically made mayos and dressings with the best ingredients possible. If you’re unfamiliar with the brand, everything is paleo from their protein powder to dressings and cooking oils. As you can see above in the bottles themselves, they’re free of soy and canola oils and have no added sugar! I also am such a huge fan of how they use avocado oil in basically EVERYTHING.
I use these even when I’m not doing Whole30 to add into tuna or salmon for a quick salad for lunch or even to dip my veggies in. Fat is the new black, people! I swear by that ranch dressing too… so so good.
Wild Caught Canned Fish (Salmon + Tuna)
Truly I never thought I’d be the kind of person who could eat canned fish… and when I talk about it I’m kind of like, wow this is kind of gross BUT on the other hand, it’s SO good! Growing up as a kid, tuna salad was my mom’s favorite food and I never really understood why. Until now. I literally LOVE fish + Primal Kitchen mayo together over lettuce with roasted veggies. It’s my go-to lunch and especially on Whole30, it’s SO easy!
I always buy wild salmon – even if it’s fresh or smoked – due to the fact that farm-raised is usually dyed and pumped with a bunch of crap. But when I’m tight on a budget, expensive wild caught salmon fillets aren’t the most ideal so that’s when canned salmon comes in! It’s much cheaper and you can find it in Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, etc. Most grocers carry wild caught canned fish.
One of my favorite and easiest dishes to make one the Whole30 is zucchini noodles with ground turkey or beef with marinara sauce and tomatoes. All fresh ingredients and nothing but REAL food! The trouble is that most people never look at the ingredients of their marinara sauce when tons of brands are always adding sugar into the ingredient list. Such a bummer because honestly, do we really need SUGAR in our freaking pasta!?
Anyways, this brand – Monte Benne – is one of my absolute favorites and you can’t go wrong with their Tomato Basil flavor.
If you guys are unfamiliar, you need to hop on the pasture-raised egg train. They are so much better for you and better quality at that. When my mom lived in Kansas, she had chickens in her backyard that would walk around the entire outside of the house/farm and laid eggs with the BRIGHTEST yolks. When you buy eggs that are just cage-free or organic, they still can be packed in tight areas and don’t have the ability to freely graze pastures.
So, if you can, go pasture-raised! The 365 brand by Whole Foods is cheaper than other pasture-raised egg brands so I always pick them up if I can.
I usually add nutritional yeast, garlic, turmeric and pink sea salt to my eggs and sauté them over some ghee until their softly scrambled. I top them on salads, make burrito bowls or have them with some fresh fruit and potatoes. Dreamy!
Guys… have you ever seen a more dynamic duo? Because I sure as hell haven’t. I tried to quit coffee this summer and lasted about… a week? Then I caved because I can’t get enough of my collagen coffee. The perks of Whole30 is that you don’t have to quit coffee AND collagen peptides are Whole30 approved since collagen comes from wild-caught marine animals and/or grass-fed bovine.
A serving of collagen is 2 scoops but I usually just do 1 with 2-3 tbsp of dairy-free creamer or 4oz of nut milk with 4oz cold-brew (it’s so strong!) and then I add more water if I want a large cup. I blend it all in my Vitamix and it’s the creamiest, frothiest magic EVER.
I’ve been using collagen for the past year and I have to say, my skin, hair and nails have been stronger, thicker and grow like crazy. It’s amazing how collagen can affect us so positively.
These are a variety of random sauces I use either in my dishes or as dips. As someone who used to love hummus, tahini plays a huge role in my kitchen. I love added a spoonful of it into a bowl with a little nutritional yeast, mustard, lemon, sea salt and water for a quick and easy salad dressing. If I’m not using tahini to make a dressing, I love dipping my roasted veggies in it for a snack. So good!
As for almond butter, I grabbed this one from Whole Foods but Trader Joe’s has an amazing raw crunchy and creamy variety that has nothing but raw almonds and no funky sugars or oils added.
As for coconut aminos, if you guys haven’t tried it but love soy sauce – you’ll love this. I add it with a little almond butter to stir fries on Whole30 and you would never notice a difference except the fact it is soy-free and has way less sodium. Magical.
These two are both staples for me on/off of Whole30 and they contain less than 3 ingredients. I love using Native Forest’s coconut milk for curries, adding it to coffee, soups or even making dairy-free sauces.
I use The New Barn’s almond milk when I run out of coffee creamer but am equally as obsessed with these dairy-free creamers called Nutpods. They are hands down THE. BEST. COFFEE CREAMER. EVER. I’m so excited, can’t you tell?! The French Vanilla and Hazelnut are my favorites.
Those are my top picks for right now but I’m sure I’ll give you guys more goodness coming up in the next few weeks. Also – if you don’t already know of my obsession with Kitchfix, a local, Chicago-based company that I partnered with a few weeks back to create my own breakfast tacos – they serve tons of gluten, dairy and soy-free meals, including TONS of Whole30 options if you’re doing Whole30 and are a busy bee.
I love having some of their meals on hand during Whole30 in case I’m traveling or at work, events, etc.
You can use my code “ChickpeaWhole30” for $30 off your first order if you order any goods this week! P.s. they deliver basically all over Chicago + for only $6. Pretty sweet deal.
I hope you all have the best weekend ever + Happy Labor Day!
This post was not sponsored by any of these brands. I genuinely just love all of the products I posted and want to share the love with you guys!