20 days on WHOLE30

I'm 20 days in to my WHOLE30 & I thought I would share a quick post with some of my thoughts thus far as well as a list of my grocery staples since starting the WHOLE30.

What I Miss the Most

Baking // I love to bake -- for an event, a holiday, or just on a rainy afternoon. Before my WHOLE30, I would bake at least once a week but usually more -- I love blessing others with food because it such a language of love. It has been hard to not bake but I am looking forward to baking for Olivia's 1st Birthday party soon! The end result of baking is always delicious, but for me the process itself is so relaxing and enjoyable, and I definitely miss it.

Date Nights to Our Favorite Restaurants // Dustin & I don't eat out often, but once in awhile we are able to go on a date night and have a few favorite places that serve amazing food that always hits the spot! I have been missing a yummy date night dinner but we've made really good meals at home and had "date night in" so that has almost made up for it.

Dessert // Some nights -- especially after dinner -- I have really wanted something sweet, something to finish off a great meal. It hasn't necessarily been a physical craving, as much as it has been a mental one. I like the idea of tucking Olivia into bed & lounging on the couch with a yummy treat. Some nights I will eat a handful of almonds or a cup of frozen fruit (my one fruit serving of the day) when I'm really in the mood but I am learning to be content without dessert after dinner.

What I Don’t Really Miss at All

Cheese // Going into my WHOLE30, I thought I would really miss cheese. I never ate a ton of it before, but I enjoyed it in small amounts on a regular basis. Some times I would be hungry and just grab a slice of turkey and cheese for a quick snack and I obviously don't do that anymore. I have learned that I don't need cheese to make every meal better, but I will reintegrate it in moderation over time.

Grains // Being gluten free, all I had to eliminate to start my WHOLE30 was: brown rice [which we usually ate a few nights a week with dinner], corn thins [which I ate my "sandwiches" on], quinoa [which I ate on a fairly regular basis] & of course, tortilla [corn] chips. I miss quinoa but I don't miss brown rice or corn chips as much as I thought I would.

New Foods I've Fallen For

Eggs // On my WHOLE30, I literally eat eggs everyday! Whether scrambled, hard boiled, in egg salad, or over-easy on my breakfast hashes, eggs always hit the spot! I was never crazy about eggs before but since starting the WHOLE30, I have really fallen in love with them!

Sweet Potatoes // These are a staple in our kitchen & always will be. I eat them every morning for breakfast and on a regular basis for dinner. They are power-packed with nutrients and can be prepared in so many different ways, which I love! I use them in hashes, as a stuffed baked potato, as fries, in salads, roasted, sweet potato chips & more!

Guacamole & Avocados // Avocados are among the healthiest natural ingredients on the planet and for babies, are considered "a perfect food" or "complete diet." They contain over 25 vital nutrients and minerals such as potassium, iron, magnesium & phosphorous. PLUS they add a delicious creaminess to any & every dish that is unlike any other food in the world. Before the WHOLE30, I only ate avocados in the form of guacamole, and even that I only ate a few times a month. Now I eat it a few times a week, sometimes even more than once a day! It is so versatile and honestly, makes everything taste even yummier. Last week I enjoyed guac on lime + cilantro grilled chicken, I pile it on my taco salads, add it to tuna, and as a snack I enjoy a dollop with a handful of sweet potato chips. It is so filling because of the high quality fat it contains and I am seriously in love!

Avocado Oil // Seriously, this oil will change your life. I fry my eggs and cook my morning hash in avocado oil every morning and they turn out amazing time & time again! The flavor is subtle enough to not be overpowering but it enhances any food you are cooking. Plus it is packed with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. Finally, avocado oil has a high smoke point [~ 480 F] which makes it ideal for searing salmon, making stir-frys & pan-roasting & grilling. 

What I’ve Learned

The difference between a craving & true hunger

Discipline with what I eat in a healthy way

How great I feel all day when I eat a big, healthy [& hearty] breakfast in the morning

That I don't need to have every ingredient on hand for a recipe [the way I used to think] and can instead get creative and swap ingredients with what I have available 

How good it feels to not feel sluggish after eating

Food which is whole & natural [unprocessed] is so much more fulfilling than anything that humans have manipulated

There are endless uses for sweet potatoes

Eggs are one of my favorite foods

A small handful of raw nuts satisfies me when I think I want a dessert instead

It is much easier to incorporate vegetables into every meal than I previously thought

Simple is almost always better

Shopping, Cooking & Eating on the WHOLE30 is so much fun!

My Grocery Lists //
These are just a few of the main staples from two of the stores we shop at most frequently.


Organic Avocados // The only place I buy avocados, TJ's sells bags of 4 for a great price. They are perfect every single time. I let them sit out & ripen on the countertop, then once ripe, store them in the fridge for up to a week. 

Sweet Potatoes // The only place I buy sweet potatoes, TJ's sells 2-3 lb bags -- offering both conventional & organic bags. The price can't be beat & considering we go through a bag a week, I love how inexpensive they are!

Zucchini // TJ's offers both conventional & organic zucchini packs with 2-3 zucchini per pack. I like zucchini that are firm & of good size, especially if I am making zoodles or grilling them (which we have been doing A LOT lately). So many other places sell zucchini but I've found it costs more and they are often smaller.

Bell Peppers // I eat a lot of bell peppers -- they are in my breakfast every morning and often we throw a few on the grill for dinner at night. TJ's has a great selection of red, orange, yellow & green peppers and they are competitively priced. 

Rainbow Carrots // These are probably my favorite TJ's product of all time (minus the almond butter I have listed below)...they are delicious roasted in olive oil with S+P and one of Olivia's favorite snacks. Roasted rainbow carrots make great baby food and add beautiful colors as a side dish to complement any entree. 

Black Olives // If you've been following along with me, you'll know I love black olives. When I was a little girl, I would sit under the kitchen table on holidays & eat black olives. My very favorite kind is from TJ's and I always keep a can on hand for taco salads, tuna salad & a quick and easy snack.

Creamy + Salted Almond Butter // The best of the best, TJ's sells my all-time favorite almond butter. The only ingredients are almonds & sea salt. Worth every penny at $6.99, and a lot less than almond butters offered at health food stores. 

Raw Nuts [Pecans, Walnuts, Almonds] // When looking to buy nuts in bulk, I always go straight for TJ's. They are a great price and you can always find any & every kind of nut you are looking for. 99% of the time I buy raw, unsalted nuts & then toast them for salads, eat them for a snack, or dress them up with seasonings for a treat.

Seasoning Grinders // Trader Joe's offers so many great WHOLE30 compliant seasonings. These are a few of our favorites: Pink Himalayan Salt, SMOKE Seasoning, 21 Seasoning Salute, Garlic Salt Grinder, Lemon Pepper Seasoning & Everyday Seasoning 


Brat Hans Mild Italian Chicken Sausage // Considering these contain no sugar and they are so flavorful, these have become a staple in our kitchen. I love to remove them from the casing & add them to hashes in the morning and my husband enjoys them straight from the grill for dinner. 

Ground Turkey // I buy all my ground turkey at Whole Foods because of the quality. It is often on sale and then I stock up and freeze it in smaller portions for our family. Ground turkey is great in taco salads, stuffed sweet potatoes and on zucchini noodles with a high quality marinara sauce & veggies.

Chicken // I buy my chicken at Whole Foods in bulk. It is free-range, organic with no hormones added. You can buy it by the single breast at the meat counter or in larger packs [with a lower price] to freeze and use as needed. 

Raw Celery // We eat a lot of celery! I add it to almost every salad, lentils for Olivia, and Dustin enjoys it in his lunch with peanut butter or almond butter. I buy it at Whole Foods because it is fresh and always delicious. I don't like to buy celery that has been stored in a bag [I'm so weird, I know!] and I've found Whole Foods sells it just the way I like it. Plus it is priced by weight, so I know I am only paying for what I will use. 

Salmon // Just like a lot of the foods I've already listed, we eat salmon a lot! Usually 2-3 times per week. I just can't get enough. Whole Foods offers a wide variety of salmon and has sales often. Be sure when you are buying salmon it is wild-caught! Our favorite way to prepare it is on the grill but it can be baked or seared as well. Just like her Mama, salmon has become one of Olivia's favorite foods and has been since she was 6 months old!

I should say, we don't have a Costco membership yet so we primarily shop at TJ's and Whole Foods, and then Target for essentials since it's so much cheaper. I know Costco has expanded significantly into offering healthy and organic food options so we are looking at getting a membership there soon! I hope this was helpful & I'd love to hear your favorite WHOLE30 & Paleo staples.

1 comment:

  1. Hi there! I just found your blog searching for whole30 stuff and just wanted to say thanks for the writeup. I'm on day 11 and doing pretty well, but it's nice to read about other people's experiences to keep me going. :)


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