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Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

Happy Monday! It’s been raining nonstop here. It’s quite annoying but I’ve actually liked that I had an excuse to lounge at home and basically relax and do nothing over the weekend. It was much needed! However, I do miss the sunshine and I’m VERY looking forward to spending Thanksgiving in Hawaii this year. Bring on the beaches!!

Before leaving, I wanted to share a last minute Thanksgiving recipe that’s so simple and easy to make. If you love sweet potato casserole, I think you’ll like this one! This candied pecan loaded sweet potatoes recipe has the same flavors as a sweet potato casserole, but takes out the labor of blending up the sweet potatoes. I’m all about doing less work than I have to (AND creating less dishes) on Thanksgiving with so many things going on if you are hosting. 

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

I find that sweet potatoes are plenty sweet on their own so I do not like to add more sugar to it, as what usually happens in a traditional sweet potato casserole. There are usually 6 different kinds of pies at the dessert table waiting for you on Thanksgiving, so why load up on excess sugar during your meal? The candied pecans in this recipe adds just enough sweetness to really enhance the flavors of the sweet potatoes, and for me, it honestly felt like I was eating dessert!

If you are looking for a fun and different take on sweet potato casserole on Thanksgiving, I highly recommend this recipe because it’s soooooo delicious. Just try it out and let me know!

Hope you have a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet PotatoesCandied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes

 

Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Serves: 6 servings
Ingredients
  • 6 sweet potatoes
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp water
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup raw pecans
  • 2 tbsp butter (Use coconut oil if you have a high sensitivity to dairy)
  • 1 tbsp coconut butter
  • ⅛ tsp sea salt
  • Optional: unsweetened coconut flakes
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. Wash the sweet potatoes, then poke holes in them by stabbing them with a fork a few times.
  4. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes - 1 hour, until soft and easily pierced with a knife.
  5. While the sweet potatoes are baking, whisk together maple syrup, water, vanilla extract, and cinnamon in a bowl.
  6. Toss in the pecans and stir to coat well. Set aside until the sweet potatoes are done.
  7. Once the sweet potatoes are done cooking, lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
  8. Cut the potatoes down the center lengthwise, then push them down carefully from the top to flatten . and open them a bit.
  9. Top each potato with the pecan mixture.
  10. Melt together butter, coconut butter, and salt on the stove top or in the microwave. Pour evenly over the sweet potatoes and the pecan topping.
  11. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until the pecans are browned and toasted. If you have leftover pecans, toast it along side the potatoes and save as a snack!
  12. Sprinkle with more cinnamon and unsweetened coconut flakes, if desired. Serve immediately.

Deliciously Sweet Candied Pecan Loaded Sweet Potatoes - Paleo Gluten Free Vegan

Stuffing Stuffed Pumpkin

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

Is everyone ready for Thanksgiving?? Who’s excited? Who’s dreading it? Who can’t wait until the holiday season is over??

As festive and fun this time of the year can be, it can be quite stressful for many of us. Well, I’m actually quite stoked for Thanksgiving this year, because we are celebrating it in Hawaii with my parents! If you didn’t know, they both live in Korea now, so it’s always a good time for me when I’m able to see them once or twice a year. I’m not sure if I’ll be cooking or going out to eat, or what we’ll be even doing, but I’m excited to be somewhere warm and sunny!

Anyway, just because I may or may not be cooking this Thanksgiving, doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy the staple dishes earlier so I can share it with you folks! So here’s a delicious and beautiful stuffed pumpkin recipe that’ll wow your guests when they see it on dinner table. What’s it stuffed with, you ask? Stuffing! Hence the name: Stuffing Stuffed Pumpkin. Say that 5 times fast. 

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

I found these mini pumpkins at the farmers market, and they weren’t labeled. After doing some internet search, I believe these are golden nugget pumpkins. If you believe that they are another variety, then let me know below! They are definitely not sweet enough to be sugar pumpkins even though they do look a bit like them.

If you can’t find these types of pumpkins, you can use other kinds. You can even stuff the stuffing in one large pumpkin, but you would have to increase the cooking time. The world is your oyster. I love how festive and delicious this dish came out, and it’s such a fun way to serve stuffing on Thanksgiving. If you are starting your menu planning, make sure to include this one because everyone will love it!

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

Paleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed PumpkinPaleo Gluten Free Whole30 Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin

Thanksgiving Stuffed Pumpkin
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 4-5 small pumpkins, or 1 large pumpkin
  • 2 tbsp ghee or coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 lb Italian pork or chicken sausage, casing removed
  • 4 large carrots, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • ½ fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup chopped almonds
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh sage
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Using a sharp knife, carefully cut out a circle on top of the pumpkin(s) making a lid as you would to carve a Jack O' Lantern. Remove the seeds and any loose strings, then generously sprinkle salt and pepper inside the pumpkins. Place the pumpkins on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  3. Heat ghee or coconut oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.
  4. Add diced onions to the pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and sauté until soft and translucent.
  5. Add the sausage and brown, stirring occasionally and breaking it into crumbles with a wooden spoon, about 8 minutes.
  6. Transfer the cooked onions and sausage into a large mixing bowl.
  7. Add carrots, celery, cranberries, garlic, chicken broth, and balsamic vinegar to the pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and simmer until the liquid is evaporate, about 8 minutes.
  8. Transfer the vegetables in the bowl with onions and sausage. Let the mixture cool for 10 minutes, then add chopped walnuts.
  9. Whisk together eggs, thyme, sage, salt, and pepper, then pour over the stuffing mixture. Stir well.
  10. Transfer the stuffing into the pumpkin(s), filling up to the top.**
  11. Place the lid on top of the pumpkin(s), and transfer to the oven.
  12. Bake until the pumpkin skin is soft, about 45 minutes - 2 hours depending on the size of your pumpkin.
Notes
**If there is leftover stuffing, bake in a small dish with the pumpkins covered with aluminum foil.

Thanksgiving Stuffing Stuffed Pumpkin - Paleo Gluten Free Whole30

 

Jack O’Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

I can’t believe it’s almost Halloween already! Are you all ready with your costumes and treats? I’m definitely not. I used to get excited about Halloween when I lived in New York City because it was such a huge deal there and I would always be invited to parties with my friends. Now that I’m living in suburbia, it’s much more toned down and most of the events are catered for little ones. I doubt I’ll dress up at all this year. Gosh, I’m so lame and boring.

However, I did make these cute (and maybe a little creepy?) Halloween deviled eggs that both kids AND adults will love. You know you’ll get plenty of sweet, processed treats everywhere you go, so why not sneak in this fun little snack at your party that’s full of healthy, delicious fats? 

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

These Jack O’Lantern Halloween deviled eggs are great if you are doing a RESTART sugar detox program, Whole30, or if you are just looking for a healthier, sugar-free option. What I love most about deviled eggs is that not only are they tasty, they are filling and makes for a perfect snack. Instead of reaching for the processed candy, the healthy fat these Halloween deviled eggs contains can really help kill your sweets cravings.

And even if you aren’t a fan of deviled eggs, these are just so fun to make even with your kids, and people will love them at parties. You can be as creative as you want with the faces, and they don’t have to be perfect! I included some not-so-perfect ones in these photos to show that as long as they look like faces, it really doesn’t matter.

Hope you have a safe and happy Halloween!

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled EggsJack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 6 eggs
  • 3 tbsp paleo mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp marinara sauce
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Pitted black olives, for decoration
Instructions
  1. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan.
  2. Take out eggs straight from the fridge, then lower the eggs into the water so they don't break, and let it come to a boil again. Once it does, lower the heat, and let the eggs simmer for 11 minutes.
  3. Prepare a large bowl with an ice bath.
  4. Once the eggs are done cooking, place them in the ice bath for at least 15 minutes.
  5. Peel the eggs under cold running water.
  6. Cut the eggs in half lengthwise.
  7. Take out the yolks and place in a bowl.
  8. Add mayo, tomato paste, marinara sauce, dijon mustard, salt and pepper, and mash with a fork until fully combined and creamy.
  9. Fill the egg whites with the mixture evenly.
  10. Cut pitted olives into small triangles for the eyes, and wider triangles for the mouth, making teeth marks if you want more details. Use kitchen shears for better precision. Be creative, and it doesn't have to be perfect! Place on top of the filling to make faces.
  11. Refrigerate for up to 4 days.
Notes
There are many ways to cook hard-boiled eggs, but I found that this method makes the best, easy-to-peel eggs. You can boil it any way you like that works best for you!

Jack O'Lantern Halloween Deviled Eggs