ONE cooking method that's changed our weeknights! & book review

We have had a really busy past couple of months, with most weeks either or both of us having activities almost every weeknight. It's exhausting for this introvert. And, it means there's way less time for cooking dinner, packing leftovers for lunches, and having a peaceful dinner at home.

A few months ago I flipped open a cookbook that has reenergized me for all of the cooking and food prep we do each week. I have a new favorite method I wanted to share with you!!

I've followed Cassy Joy of Fed + Fit for a while now, and heard about her new cookbook/28-day lifestyle/food/fitness manual on podcast interviews. It sounded like a comprehensive resource for people interested in making health changes, and was all infused with Cassy's cheerful, positive personality. But we've been doing the "real food"/mostly Paleo lifestyle for almost 4.5 years now, and I don't use cookbooks or recipes most of the time.

But then I saw the book at a bookstore and flipped through, and immediately felt inspired by several of the recipes. Then I had a chance to get a review copy of it, and jumped on it!

The book (Fed + Fit: A 28 Day Food & Fitness Plan to Jump-Start Your Life with Over 175 Squeaky-Clean Paleo Recipes) has a ton of squeaky clean, super healthy, incredibly photographed, delicious-sounding recipes and we've tried a few of them already. (My favorite discovery from this book is the homemade buffalo sauce!! I had never had "buffalo" flavored anything until this year, really... my 13 years of vegetarianism didn't expose me to buffalo chicken or anything else, I guess. The buffalo sauce recipe is SO DANG GOOD I could put it on anything!)

There's a chapter in the book called "Casserole is my favorite food." I also hadn't made many casseroles in my life until recent years. But Cassy's Buffalo Chicken Casserole sounded so good, I tried it one week.

Wow. Not only was it delicious, I discovered that when we had a casserole made up in the fridge, we had at least one super easy weeknight dinner ready when I got home! A lot of her casseroles require cooking before assembly and then baking for 30 minutes or so before serving. I discovered if I added a casserole to my Sunday morning food prep, all I would have to do on Monday night to make dinner was turn on the oven and pop it in!



I feel like casserole has a bad connotation. I haven't had a tuna noodle casserole since childhood, but now I know there are SO MANY fabulous combinations of real food (the basic components are meat, veggies, and starchy veggies, plus a yummy sauce or two) that can make up delicious, EASY casseroles!

Plus, I love that I can just chop up a big serving and give Jason a filling, nourishing lunch to take to work. So much easier and more satisfying than the sometimes random combinations of meat and veggies we often cobble together when we realize we don't have good leftovers.

There are I think 190 recipes in the book, almost all of them with beautiful photographs and all with nutrition and allergen facts, but there are two other big parts of the book I have't yet explored. The 28-day plan is a food and fitness plan for a health reset (based on her "Four Pillars" of health which include mindset and rest & hydration), and works with her supplemental online tools. The final chapter of the book is the fitness index, with routines for almost 30 workouts you can do at home. (She partnered with Juli Bauer of PaleOMG for that part--Juli knows her fitness!!)

She also includes shopping lists (and she has an app for making them from her recipes!), stocking your pantry, make-ahead tips, doubling or reducing recipes, and instructions for storage, freezing, and reheating.

Fed + Fit: A 28 Day Food & Fitness Plan to Jump-Start Your Life with Over 175 Squeaky-Clean Paleo Recipes is a great deal on Amazon, buy it here if you want some encouragement and motivation for healthy cooking and lifestyle, in a beautiful book!


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