When it comes to treating myself and indulging, I’ve always been way more inclined to chocolate-y treats and comfort food rather than alcohol. It’s never interested me, and it’s never made me feel good. But one thing I can’t deny is that they sure make alcoholic beverages look fun, right? I don’t even want the alcohol. I just want drinks served in ridiculous ways. Come one… I want to drink bone broth from a fish bowl and put paper fans in my green smoothies.
One thing that has always intrigued me was jello shots. I’ve never tried or made these, but always thought they looked fun. So I got to thinking… is there a way I could make alcohol free jello shots? Maybe with… kombucha? And yes… you can. Kombucha jello shots are your frat party dream with a real food twist.
So, Why Kombucha?
If you’ve never had kombucha, it’s essentially fermented tea. It’s incredibly trendy right now, and though I still prefer things like sauerkraut, kombucha is popular for a reason. It’s a good way to get in some variety of gut bacteria without actually thinking about it too much, all while having a yummy drink!
You guys know how important a healthy gut micro biome is and how much I focus on it, so I’m all for anything fermented. The only thing I will say is that kombucha is very high in yeast and histamine making it better to avoid for some who are sensitive.
Also, I’ll always recommend kombucha over alcohol any day. Not only is it better for your gut, but I firmly believe you don’t need alcohol to have fun.
Why Jello Shots?
Like I said, they’re fun. Jello is just fun, okay?
Before I really understood gelatin, I always thought jello was just full of chemicals to give it the jiggly texture. Rather, gelatin is a healing food! When made from a pastured source (like Vital Proteins) gelatin can help support the gut lining, as well as hair, skin, and nail health.
So basically, they’re non-alcoholic gut loving shots. Win, win.
Though jello shots are often seen at parties and events throughout the year, I created these especially with the fourth of July in mind. I just didn’t want to do another berry dessert or a watermelon salad. Though I’ll clearly still have these at my own 4th of July BBQ this year, I predict that the kombucha jello shots which be a much bigger hit.
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup kombucha (flavored or unflavored... your choice!)
- 1/3 cup frozen fruit (cherries or blueberries for the darker red, or strawberries for pink)
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp gelatin
- Add the water and berries to a high speed blender and blend on high for 1-2 minutes or until thoroughly combined. You don't want any chunks or fruit skins visibly present.
- Pour the mixture into a sauce pan and stir in the honey
- Very slowly sprinkle in the gelatin to make sure it's evenly spread out and dissolves
- Quickly whisk the mixture to combine the gelatin
- Place the sauce pan on a stove top set to medium/low heat for 4-5 minutes or until the gelatin is fully melted
- Pull off the stove and allow to cool for a few minutes
- Once cooled, add in the kombucha
- The kombucha will foam, so allow the mixture to settle for a minute or so, and then scoop off the excess foam with a spoon
- Pour the mixture into shot glasses (you'll have 3-4 for tall shot glasses and 6-8 for shorter ones) and allow to set in the fridge for 45-60 minutes before enjoying
- NOTE that the shots may harden to the point where it's difficult to pour out of a shot glass depending on the glasses you use and how long they were in the fridge. If this happens, simply just break them up with a spoon or straw!
Like I said, you may find it challenging to use a glass shot glass. Jello shots are traditionally taken in very small plastic shot glasses because they’re easy to bend and shoot out the jello. I may lose my hippie card for this, but no judgement from me if you go with the traditional plastic! It’s easier, and the liquid is cooled by the time you add it to the plastic so you don’t have to worry about it melting the plastic.
Have fun, be safe, and enjoy the heck out these Kombucha Jello shots this holiday, to all of my party people! I can’t wait to see your versions at your own parties on social media!
It’s no secret that greens are good for you. They’re packed with vitamins and phytonutrients that are essential for you to thrive. That’s why green drinks and green smoothies are so popular. I fell in love with the documentary Fat Sick and Nearly Dead years ago, and it’s all about a man with autoimmune disease who brings himself back to health with a green juice fast. Though it’s inspiring and has a good core message of “eat your greens”, I don’t recommend long term juice fasting as an NTP. You lose the necessary fiber, and lack certain protein and minerals. However, it’s undeniable that getting in lots of greens at once is an effective strategy! That’s why I decided to put a spin on a green drink with this bone broth green “smoothie” drink!
It’s super easy and quick to make in the instant pot (or modified on the stove) and it’s the perfect way to get in tons of veggies and bone broth at once. You can drink it straight either warm or slightly chilled (I like it best warm) or you can even eat it as a soup and add in some extra fat like avocado or protein like shredded chicken!
So, why is this drink the bomb?
Why I Love This Bone Broth Green Smoothie Drink
1.It’s packed with greens
It’s not secret that we want to try and get in more green veggies. They’re packed with vitamins, phytonutrients to keep us healthy, and this smoothie is full of them with kale, celery, leeks, and cilantro!
2. It still has the fiber in the veggies
One of the drawbacks of juices is that you lose the fiber in the veggies. It can be fine to have a juice without the fiber every now and then, but by and large, fiber is an important part of the vegetable and still comes with added nutrients. This drink is a smoothie/pureed soup rather than a juice, so the fiber is still intact!
3. The base is gut healing bone broth
Rather than water or a milk, the base to the smoothie/pureed soup is gut healing bone broth!
Bone broth comes with tons of benefits such as…
- It’s rich in minerals that are easily absorbed,
- It’s high in collagen and amino acids
- Bone broth is full of good quality protein and healthy fatty acids
- It’s good for the hair, skin, nails, and gut integrity.
Bone broth is often a staple in the gut healing diets like my 30 Day Gut Healing Diet Plan & Guide and the key to adding protein, fats, and minerals to this drink, which juices alone don’t pack as much of a punch from.
4. It’s an easy way to get in tons of nutrients at once!
Starting your day with this drink is a great way to get in lots of greens, and bone broth all at once!
Food is medicine and when working on healing the gut, or other chronic illness, lots of food is required to add in lots of nutrients. It’s not easy to get in bone broth and tons of veggies daily, so this drink is a perfect way to get in some extra nutrients.
5. It’s made in the Instant Pot to save time
I love using my instant pot to save time on recipes like this! It cuts the time in half, and always makes such a flavorful meal.
If you don’t have an instant pot, you can still make the recipe on a stove top! Simply follow the modifications in the recipe as listed.
Bone Broth Green "Smoothie" Drink
- 1 cup carrots, chopped
- 1.5 cups celery, chopped (about 2-3 ribs)
- 3 cups kale, destemmed and chopped
- 1 cup leeks, chopped (about 1 large leek)
- 1/3 cup cilantro
- 4 cups bone broth
- 2 tbsp lemon juice (or apple cider vinegar)
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Set the instant pot to sauté and add the coconut oil
- Allow the oil to melt
- Add the chopped carrots and sauté for 3-5 minutes
- Add the remainder of the veggies and the salt lightly sauté for a few minutes to soften
- After the veggies are lightly softened, add the bone broth and lemon juice
- Turn the instant pot off sauté, and lock on the lid
- Press manual, high pressure and set to 12 minutes (for stove top, simply simmer for 25-30 minutes)
- After the timer has gone off, carefully quick release the pressure on the instant pot
- Remove the lid and allow to cool
- Place the mixture in a high speed blender and blend until fully combined
- Serve the drink slightly chilled, or warm and enjoy!
That’s all there is to it! Like I said, this is great for a breakfast drink or mid-day snack, but I’ve also had it as a pureed soup at lunch or dinner. Enjoy!!
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I love the holidays and am quick to break out my sweaters, string up various shiny decorations, all while warming up a mug of something warm to sip. We all love our bone broth, but you’ve just gotta treat yourself sometimes. Nothing is better for that than hot chocolate, or Paleo AIP hot chocolate in this case.
“Hot Chocolate” is problematic for a few reason if you’re Paleo or following the Autoimmune Protocol. For one, it’s most often made with conventional whole milk (hello, GMO corn-fed, CAFO, sad cows) and made with lots of sugar and chocolate, both of which are off limits of the autoimmune protocol.
My gut health issues are literally life long, and though I’ve come a tremendously long way, I still just can’t pop into any ol’ coffee shop and get a hot chocolate without suffering consequences. It’s not worth it, and it’s not really even necessary when you plan properly!
That’s where this recipe for Paleo Autoimmune Protocol hot chocolate comes in…
Not only is it quick and easy to make, but it’s so close to the real thing! It’s super rich and creamy, and really hits the spot for a craving on this traditional treat.
So, how does one do “chocolate” on AIP? Say hello to my new favorite Paleo/ AIP pantry staple, Carob powder.
Carob powder is cheap, AIP, Paleo, and tastes just like chocolate. I sub it for chocolate in AIP mug muffins, chocolate avocado mousse, and even add it to my smoothies if I’m feeling spicy. Get it here on Amazon if you don’t have it yet, and I promise that you’ll thank me!
This hot chocolate also wouldn’t be the same without it, along with coconut cream which helps make it nice and creamy, even without the dairy!
Last but not least, I’ve given this hot chocolate a bit of a face lift since I first shared it and added in vital proteins collagen powder.
Collagen from grass-fed cows is amazing for gut health support, as well as hair, skin and nail health. It literally disappears in liquid, and doesn’t have any taste. It’s the perfect boost to this hot chocolate, and instantly elevates this from just a treat, to an added healing food.
Paleo Autoimmune Protocol Hot Chocolate
- 2 cups coconut milk
- 1 tbsp coconut cream
- 2 tbsp carob powder
- 1/2 tsp maple sugar (or coconut sugar)
- 1 scoop collagen powder (or 2 tbsp)
- Add coconut milk to a small sauce pan and begin to heat on med/low heat for about 4 minutes
- Add in coconut cream and whisk until combined and melted
- Stir in carob powder, collagen, and maple sugar and whisk vigorously until there are not more clumps
- Top with extra coconut cream if desired, and enjoy!
There you have it! Creamy, chocolately, and totally compliant with a healing diet. I’m going to be enjoying this baby on many a cold night this winter.
Is hot chocolate one of your cold weather favorites? Have you ever had carob?
This recipe was shared on the Phoenix Helix AIP Recipe Roundtable and featured on the top 100 AIP Recipes!
The time has come… pumpkin spice everything season is upon us.
It gets more and more commercialized every year… pumpkin spice drinks, pumpkin spice baked goods, pumpkin spice candy, pumpkin spice beer. And let’s face it… I eat up every second of it. I mean, I would get my cat pumpkin spice cat food if I could.
Pumpkin spice is just the perfect cue that summer is over, and a new season is here! There’s something so special and exciting about a new season. Even though we experience this feeling four times a year for every year of our entire lives (unless you live in Texas like me and you’re lucky to feel it twice a year) fall is just extra special, and pumpkin spice is extra special.
I went pumpkin spice latte crazy at about 19. A young, naive college student ready to take fall by storm with my leggings, knock-off Target ugg boots and blanket scarf. At the time, I had a lot of Starbucks and K-cup PSL’s filled with sugar, caffeine and other mystery ingredients that left me feeling like junk every single time. Yet I did it again and again… until I finally came to a final breaking point.
In my 20’s I said “goodbye” to the caffeine and drive thru windows, and started my healing journey with my Hashimoto’s and gut issues. I made my very first AIP (autoimmune paleo friendly) pumpkin spice “latte” last year and enjoyed that as a nice treat while healing my thyroid and gut.
However, over the past year, I’ve been able to make even more strides in my healing journey to where I can enjoy ghee (clarified butter) and decaf coffee to make my own Paleo Pumpkin Spice Butter Coffee Latte!
Why Butter/Ghee Coffee?
Butter coffee or bullet proof coffee is a big thing in the paleo world. However, let me start out by saying that I do not believe in coffee as a meal replacement and this is not intended to be that… it just makes it even tastier 😉
The added fat from the butter/ghee in this coffee allows it be more satiating and help balance your blood sugar from the little bit of caffeine and sugar. I always recommend making sure that you’re pairing fat/protein with sugar, so adding butter/ghee to coffee is a great way to help that balance and make it taste even richer!
This recipe is made with ghee, not butter. Though you can sub grass-fed butter if it works for you, it still doesn’t work for me. Ghee is clarified butter in which the butter is clarified to remove the milk solids and be made lactose and casein free. Thus, pure butter fat that often works as a great sub for those of us with dairy issues or autoimmunity.
Well, one because I’m a spaz and will lose it on a caffeine high if I tested this recipe with caffeinated coffee. Decaf still does have some caffeine, but it’s much lower and I can tolerate it better.
Two, I know that the majority of my readers are dealing with some sort of chronic illness or health issue. Though coffee in any form still may not be a good idea, I prefer to recommend decaf as I just don’t like to perpetuate regular consumption of caffeine. Though it can be fine in moderation, I recommend going without when possible. Caffeine is stimulating to the adrenals and causes a stress response. Knowing how many people already suffer from adrenal dysfunction, I don’t recommend adding fuel to the fire when not needed.
Also, depending on caffeine daily to keep energy up is a sign that there’s another underlying issue that’s best to not ignore.
So what if you’re a regular caffeine drinker? That’s fine. Just because I don’t like to recommend drinking caffeine on a regular basis doesn’t mean that it’s not a fine thing to have occasionally. Many of my clients are and I work slowly with them to cut back on it. However, when you can avoid caffeine and opt for a caffeine free drink, go for it it 🙂
Paleo Pumpkin Spice Butter Coffee Latte
- 8 oz decaf coffee
- 1/4 cup coconut cream
- 1 scoop grass-fed collagen powder
- 1 tbsp pumpkin puree
- 1 tbsp ghee (sub coconut oil if ghee isn't tolerated)
- 1 tsp vanilla extra
- 1/2 tsp coconut sugar or honey
- 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice blend of choice
- Brew the coffee and add to a high speed blender like a vitamix
- Add the remainder of ingredients and blend for 5-7 seconds of until coconut cream froths
- Pour into a mug and top with a bit of pumpkin spice blend and enjoy!
When it comes to fermented foods, fermented drinks like kombucha are the little darling of the ferment world right now. Easily one of the most mainstreamed health foods, there are tons of brands making kombucha and even more people taking on making fermented drinks themselves. Though kombucha isn’t my favorite, I do have favorite, and it’s ginger beet kvass. Stay with me here! It’s much easier to make than kombucha, it’s cheap, and dare I say, it may be even healthful of a probiotic drink than kombucha.
Why have fermented foods?
So, what’s the deal with all of this probiotic/fermentation buzz these days? It may be trendy now, but fermented foods date way, way back beyond the packages that we find in stores today. Before refrigeration, fermenting foods was a way to keep them fresh while also adding the benefit of probiotics. Fermented foods as a traditional food rather than a hot health trend, and probiotics are a much needed part of our diet.
Probiotics help maintain and refresh our gut flora which is necessary to maintain proper gut health, and just good health in general. Unbalanced gut flora can lead to a myriad of problems from autoimmune disease, digestive dysfunction, and even changes in our mood. We’re born with a certain amount, but our ancestors taught us that we need to keep replenishing our gut flora with fresh probiotics. But wait, can’t we just take a probiotic pill and call it a day? Well, it’s said that one jar of a fermented food like sauerkraut is equal to 8 jars of probiotic pills! Fermented foods are more traditional, cheaper, and more probiotic rich.
Why ginger beet kvass?
So, what makes beet kvass so special? Not only does it actually taste surprisingly delicious, but beet kvass packs more of a punch than just your average kombucha. Not only is it fermented, thus probiotic rich, but it’s great for both liver and gallbladder health.
In our low-fat/poor quality fat centric world, many of us fall victim to poor fat digestion caused by our gallbladder getting lazy. The bile within our gallbladder isn’t needed if we’re not consuming fat, or consuming bad fats… it gets viscous and doesn’t flow well even when we switch over to a good quality fat diet. Beets help to naturally get the bile moving, thus improving fat digestion.
Not only does improving fat digestion take away digestive distress, but it also helps with satiation, nutrient absorption and cures tons of mystery symptoms. Have dry hands all of the time? Blame poor fat digestion. What about bloating? Most likely poor fat digestion. The list goes on, and on as so many of us suffer from it.
The ginger also helps aid in digestion, and adds great flavor!
Ginger Beet Kvass Recipe
- 1 large purple beet
- 1 large golden beet (could sub for another purple… I think the golden helps enhance the flavor)
- 1 tbsp fresh grated ginger
- 1 tablespoon sea salt
- 1/4 cup of juice from sauerkraut
- Enough water to fill the half gallon jar (varies by how large your beets are)
- Chop the beets into large cubes and add to the bottom of the jar along with the ginger into a half gallon jar
- Add the juice from the sauerkraut, water, and sea salt
- Take a clean kitchen cloth and cover the mouth of the jar, securing it with a rubber band
- Keep in a cool dry place for at least 3 days. You’ll see the top of the jar will start to fizz a bit.
- Remove the cloth, and add the lid.
- Refrigerate, and enjoy!
How do you drink it?
I probably wouldn’t drink the entire thing at once, just as I’d want to save it! I drink a few sips, or a half of a small glass daily. It has enough flavor to drink by itself and is so much better than just taking a probitoic daily.
I also find that if I eat a high fat meal and start to ever feel discomfort, I take a swig of this and it aids in any discomfort.
What’s your favorite fermented food?
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Have you ever seen those big beautiful smoothies on Instagram? The ones that are just overflowing from a mason jar or have a mosaic of toppings in a bowl? They look so beautiful, so fresh, and most of the time… pretty full of sugar. If you actually take a good look at the recipes that go along with these popular green smoothie bowls or juices, they’re usually packed with sugar, scarce on veggies, and almost always void of healthy fats and protein. But, it doesn’t have to be that way! That’s why I created a nourishing smoothie bowl thats packed with all the good stuff while still being full of flavor.
Smoothies can be one of those pseudo-health foods that seem healthy, but can have just as much sugar as a soda if not more if not made properly. So, what does a good, nutrient dense smoothie need?
Mostly veggies. Especially leafy greens! Smoothies are a great way to get in lots of leafy greens. Have as many veggies as you want in your smoothies!
Moderate fruit. Fruit may be natural sugar, but it’s still sugar. And in excess, it’s still going to swing your blood sugar and not satiate you. If you’re relying on mostly fruit to make your smoothie, I guarantee that you’ll be hungry soon after and craving more sugar. In nature, we didn’t have much need for more than 2 servings of fruit a day. However, smoothies can easily have 3-4 servings of fruit along with sugar-y juice that’s void of fiber. Try sticking to one serving of fruit in a smoothie and using something like a frozen banana, or fresh berries.
Healthy Fats. Fat is usually the big thing that’s missing from most smoothies. Healthy fats like avocado and coconut oil are a great addition to a smoothie, and are what actually satiates us. Adding a tablespoon of fat to your smoothie will help keep you full.
Good quality protein. Extra protein is a great addition to a smoothie, but be cautious of poor quality powders. Many protein powders can be filled with sugar, fake ingredients, and soy. I like adding grass-fed collagen to my smoothies. It doesn’t add any funky taste either! Collagen from grass-fed cows is also great for gut healing as helps to restore the intestinal lining that is often destroyed by leaky gut. Get some here!
It’s also important to note that I say smoothies not juices. Juices can be great in moderation if you’re juicing mostly vegetables, but when we’re talking fruit juice, it’s a huge shot to your blood sugar.
Now that we’ve got all of the essentials laid out, let’s put them all together in my coconut kale smoothie bowl!
Coconut Kale Smoothie Bowl | Autoimmune Paleo and Gut Healing
- 3-4 large kale leaves, destemed
- 2 frozen peach slices
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp collagen hydrolysate
- 3 ice cubes
- Juice from 1/4 lemon
- Optional Topping
- 1/2 banana sliced
- 1 tbsp coconut flakes
- Add the kale and coconut milk to the blender (vitamin, ninja, nutribullet, etc) and blend until smooth
- Add other ingredients and blend until smooth and all frozen chunks are broken up
- Pour smoothie into a bowl (or cup if preferred)
- Add toppings as desired
- Eat with a spoon and enjoy!
I highly recommend trying this out if you’re looking for a cold treat, or are struggling to get extra leafy greens into your diet. Not only is it nutrient dense, but it’s so much fun to eat!
Do you make smoothie bowls? What are you go-to toppings?
This recipe was shared on the Pheonix Helix Recipe AIP Recipe Roundtable. Go check it out!