Curious about the “Caveman” or “Paleo” diet? Here are 10 Paleo diet recipes so you can see what it’s like to follow it.
If you’ve ever thought your diet would be better off by dumping all the added sugars and processed foods and getting back to basics—more fruits, veggies, and lean meats—you might want to try a modern-day Paleo-inspired diet.
It may seem like a fad diet, but the core principles of Paleo make good nutrition sense.
For starters, cutting out processed foods and added sugar will benefit your health and your waistline, no matter your diet plan. Now, what about those other foods the Paleo Diet eliminates: grains and starchy veggies, dairy, legumes, and alcohol? While complete elimination of food groups is still generally not recommended by dietitians, the Paleo approach reminds us of the foods that should be the mainstays in our diet—vegetables, fruits, lean proteins, and healthy fats—and also inspires us to get a little creative in the kitchen.
Here are 10 healthy Paleo-friendly recipes so you can eat like your hunter-gatherer ancestors.
Posts is by Brianna Farrand, a Columbia University Teacher’s College graduate student and intern at Appetite for Health.
Baked Eggs in a Bell Pepper
Paleo stuffed peppers? You Bet! These roasted red peppers are filled with sautéed zucchini, onions, and mushrooms, then baked with a whole egg on top. They’re naturally portion-controlled and perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Avocado Chicken Salad
By using avocado in place of the traditional mayo, this chicken salad is a great example of how to incorporate healthier, unsaturated fats into your diet. Red grapes and scallions enhance the flavor and texture.
Balsamic Steak Rolls
Thin skirt steak, wrapped around a pile of matchstick vegetables and finished with a tangy-sweet balsamic glaze, reminds us of a steak sandwich without all that bread getting in the way of the good part. These are delicious hot or cold, as an entrée or a party appetizer.
Spicy Shrimp and Butternut Squash “Rice” with Tomatoes
A few pulses of the food processor turn butternut squash into “rice” so colorful and nutrient-packed, you won’t miss the original! This one-pot meal cooks in only 15 minutes and gets lots of flavor from smoked paprika, chili powder, and fresh parsley.
Thai Chicken Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
This baked sweet potato feels like comfort food, and the Thai chicken packs in spicy flavor and filling protein. It’s the healthy, Paleo answer to loaded nachos and Thai takeout!
Chicken Veggie Meatballs with Pesto Zucchini “Noodles”
With a little help from a mandoline or a spiralizer, you can make zucchini into low-calorie “pasta.” Paired with chicken meatballs, this bowl is a lighter, refreshing twist on the classic. Make a double batch of meatballs and stash half in the freezer for a quick and healthy weeknight dinner.
Enchilada Chicken Stew in the Crockpot
Modified Mexican dishes are popular Paleo diet recipes. Enjoy all the flavors of enchiladas without the extra calories (from the tortillas) and without the extra prep time! All ingredients, including the chicken, go directly into the slow cooker… no stovetop browning required.
You’ve probably heard us sing the praises of salmon once or twice before (Omega-3 fats! Protein! Potassium!), but try this recipe for a new and tasty way to prepare it. Dry-roasted pistachios contribute color and crunch. This is one of those “looks so elegant but is so easy to make” recipes!
Chai Pumpkin Bread
Perfect for an afternoon snack with a cup of tea, this pumpkin bread gets upgraded with chai spice for an enjoyable new flavor combo. Mashed banana and ¼ cup of honey give this bread a subtle sweetness without any refined sugar.
These egg muffins are another great example of pre-portioned convenience – grab one or two for an easy breakfast on-the-go or for a protein-packed afternoon snack. They freeze well, too!
Paleo Diet Overview. US News & World Report. Accessed 22 Sept 2014.