When I asked your greatest struggles with eating a paleo, keto, and/or low carb diet, a few common problems rose to the top:
- Folks do not have much time for cooking
- It’s hard to get kids to eat what is on the table.
- Folks think every meal needs to be a complex #foodporn affair
And I just wanted to let you know, good, healthy food can be quick, tasty for all palettes, and simple! To be honest with you, most meals we eat are all of the above. Just check out a recent dinner I whipped up at the Lazy Lobo Ranch…
This gives you a good sense of how and what we eat, particularly in the summer months. I HATE cooking a big meal and heating up our house when it’s already hot outside. So in the summer I do a lot of grilling and what is effectively “antipasti” sides.
Here is what I did with this meal:
Prepped the burgers—I made burgers using meat from ButcherBox ahead of time, seasoning them with salt and garlic powder. I just work this into the meat by hand, then try to make some uniform patties. I put that on a plate, threw it in the fridge (with another plate on top to keep it from drying out).
Then the artichokes…staging them in our Instant Pot sitting on top of a metal collapsible steamer with about 2″ of water in the bottom. I put the lid on but just left it as is, waiting for dinner later.
It was time to go picked up the girls from school. And when I rolled back into the house I started the Instant Pot on high pressure cook for 15 min (pretty good for medium sized artichokes) and started the grill.
Once the grill was hot I turned off the MIDDLE BURNER and put the meat there, leaving the side burners on medium. In this way I get an initial sear, but then cook with indirect heat. This reduces heterocyclic amine formation to virtually nothing. I set a timer for about 7 min on the burgers and then got out all the sides and condiments.
Now the rest of the accoutrements…
For the girls this included some sliced cantaloupe, some Primal Kitchen Foods mayo (both regular and chipotle) a couple flavors of Farmhouse kraut, and two varieties of fermented pickles, one from Sonoma Brinery and the other from Bubbies Pickles. They also get some cheddar cheese on their burgers.
For myself and Nicki I cut up some red onion and red bell-peppers. I add some sheep cheese to my burger and Nicki goes cheese-less.
Timer goes off, I flip the burgers…girls start setting the table (which is a guaranteed shit show with them fighting over who does what, but in theory this is teaching them something valuable…)
Timer goes off, I turn off the grill, let the burgers “rest” (no idea why meat needs to rest, it’s already dead…)
Everything gets plated up (at this point the artichokes are done) and the girls (and parents) absolutely smash this meal.
So, all in all, I did a little prep earlier in the day, but then throwing this meal together took mere minutes. During that time I’m visiting with the girls, learning about their day, and having them help in the kitchen when and where they can. Not to mention, the clean-up is almost non-existent.
In the cooler months I’ll take a little more time and cook a bit more complex meals, but this is 80-90% of the meals we prep in the summer months.
What’s your go to simple summer meal?