Last week, I shared about my journey towards a Whole30 and why I felt I needed to try this elimination diet. In a nutshell, I need to break the strongholds that food has over me. Sugar, especially, is my crutch. And boy, do I love to bake!
My Whole30 plan looks pretty different from most people’s. I’ve read that you need to clean out your cabinets and have only Whole30 foods available, but for me, that’s just not feasible. I’m the only one at my house doing Whole30. My children and my husband are all at healthy weights (my kids are in the 10th percentile on weight, so they’re tiny!). And at 2, 4, & 6, they’re addicted to raw carrots and snap peas, not sugar, so I felt no need to recruit them to do it with me.
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A Month Before
Read up on Whole30. Familiarize yourself with the rules. Then read it again!
I contacted a few close family members to see if anyone wanted to do it with me. So far, I’ve found no takers, but that’s OK. By talking to them about it, I knew I was increasing my accountability. I also scoured the internet and found Whole30 inspiration at some of my favorite blogs, like Life As Mom/Good Cheap Eats, From This Kitchen Table, and Growing in His Glory. And I found a way to make black coffee tolerable, thanks to Erin at The Humbled Homemaker.
Two Weeks Before
I shared a few things related to Whole30 on my blog’s facebook page and on instagram, once again, to increase my accountability. The more people I told, the better success I would have!
Make a game plan.
I didn’t want to turn my kids off of mommy’s cooking for an entire month. One of my priorities as a mom is creating family favorites that my kids will look forward to for years to come. I love cooking for my family, and I knew that success for me would mean finding a way to keep everyone happy while doing such an extreme food plan.
The solution? Spaghetti and tacos! One night a week, we have spaghetti (served over spaghetti squash for me) and we have tacos another night. I can either have a taco salad or eat my taco in lettuce instead of a taco shell. These are two of my kids’ favorite meals.
Make & freeze a few Whole30 compliant meals.
I made a huge pot of spaghetti & meat sauce (I used this as my template recipe and modified it to my liking) and then put most of it in the deep freezer, in portions for our family. I made a large batch of taco seasoning, which I cooked into four pounds of ground beef to freeze for those taco nights. I also made a ton of these little Greek meatballs for other meals. The first time I served it, I also made a large enough batch of the sauce to freeze too. Then all I have to do on meal night is make or buy pita bread for our family and we’ll be set for dinner!
Our Whole30 meal plan looks something like this:
Saturdays & Sundays: Soup & leftover soup (I’m trying different recipes from my Whole30 Pinterest board)
Tuesday: Dinner with community group
Wednesday: Greek meatballs & Avocado Tzatziki sauce
Friday: Breakfast for dinner, baked chicken & veggies, or try a new recipe.
Pretty simple, right? It varies a little from week to week, depending on what we’ve got going on, but that’s my basic outline for meals. Last night, we had a meeting so we ate at Chipotle. It’s super easy to eat Whole30 at Chipotle.
Breakfast: I’ve never been big on breakfast, so I really have to make myself eat when I wake up in the morning. Here’s what I’m eating!
Spinach & Egg cups: I’m going to tweak the recipe next time I make them, but I like that this is a grab-n-go breakfast–perfect for days when we have to leave the house early.
Sauteed greens (kale or spinach) with 2 fried eggs and fruit.
Lunch: I’ve loved experimenting with food during lunch! It has been fun and I’ve found some yummy favorites.
Not too shabby, is it? This isn’t a deprivation diet.
Snacks: Snacks are discouraged during Whole30, but sometimes I need some calories.
Either fresh fruit, raw veggies, or an Apple Pie Larabar if I know I won’t be home soon and I need something to tide me over. My new favorite snack feels completely indulgent–Apple slices and sugar-free Bare Almond Butter. After 10 days of no sugar, this tastes like dessert! Not all LaraBars are compliant, so check the ingredients!
It’s still a lot of cooking, but it’s far less than cooking everything from scratch ever single day.
What ideas do you have for keeping it simple on Whole30?