WHOLE30 Day #25 – Cheez-It!

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 5.29.38 PM
+NOTE: This post has been updated since I originally published it and now includes some additional info as obtained from the WHOLE30 Forums.

WHOLE30 Day #25 –The final week of April has begun, which is particularly noteworthy because it marks the last full week of our first WHOLE30 journey. You’ll notice that I’m referring to it now as our “first” adventure with WHOLE30. It’s easy to envision oneself repeating this admittedly difficult process when there are only 6 days left to endure.

It’s also easier to envision repeating WHOLE30 when you can point to several specific rewards gained from the program. Both my husband and I have noticed positive physical changes in the last few weeks. Hubs has lost inches off his waist which was his primary physical goal entering WHOLE30 and is, according to multiple studies an important health marker, especially as we age. To read more about Hubs’ experiences and results, check out “I’m at a Loss,” at Functional Dad.net.

I didn’t use measurements for my pre-WHOLE30 goal-setting. I probably should have, but I developed a significant aversion to that yellow measuring tape while I was pregnant. The trauma of seeing those ever-increasing numbers of my girth was just too much for me. My goal has, for many months now, been quite simply to fit into my pre-pregnancy clothes. So for me, a major accomplishment was comfortably fitting into several pair of my pre-pregnancy work pants and – drumroll please – getting into a pair of my pre-pregnancy jeans. True, they don’t fit like they used to, but I got them on. And that’s a huge deal for me! Huge.

Despite these significant and tangible achievements, we’ve still got 6 days and nights worth of meals to get through. According to the handy, dandy official WHOLE30 Timeline (which if you’ve been following this blog, you’ve seen repeatedly by now), we should have been pretty tired of eggs in all iterations by about day 10 or 11. So you can imagine that by days 24 or 25, we need something to jazz up our stand-by omelets. Here’s where my years as a vegan came in handy. I remembered a recipe I’d made a long time ago using cashews and nutrient yeast to make a kind of cheese-ish sauce. Full disclosure here, I’m not 100% sure if the WHOLE30 authors would technically approve of nutrient yeast (I couldn’t find it on any approved or disapproved food list so I’m making a judgement call. +++UPDATE: I was finally able to find some additional info regarding nutrient yeast in the fabulous WHOLE30 Forums. See additional comments at bottom of post.). And as I’ve discussed before, I’ve intentionally decided to avoid my natural predilection toward perfectionism in order to increase my own likelihood of completing the “whole” WHOLE30 days (pun intended). The recipe below was just what we needed to add a little punch to our egg meals. As a bonus the “cheez-ish” sauce goes great on just about any protein dish (try it on plain baked chicken, turkey, pork or beef); adds zing to baked or roasted potatoes and livens up any salad. Hope your family enjoys it as much as we did!

Cheez-ish Sauce the Awesome Omelet Topper

Cheez-ish Sauce – Delicious Topper for Omelets, Potatoes, and All Manner of Assorted WHOLE30 Goodies!!!

WHOLE30-ish Cheez-Ish Sauce

• 1 cup “raw” cashews
• 1 whole red bell pepper
• 1/3 cup nutrient yeast
• ½ tsp. prepared Dijon mustard
• 1 tsp. iodized sea salt
• 1/8 tsp. turmeric

• distilled or filtered water
• high-powered blender (e.g. Nutribullet, Vitamixer, etc.) or food processor

1. Place cashews in canister of blender or food processor and cover with enough distilled or filtered water to completely cover cashews.
Soak cashews for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.
2. While the cashews soak, wash and core the bell pepper, cutting into large chunks so it will puree more easily.
3. Strain cashews and retain some of the soaking liquid.
4. Place cashews, about 2 Tbsp. soaking liquid, chopped pepper and remaining ingredients in canister and puree until very smooth.
You may have to add more soaking liquid but do so very carefully, adding only about 1 tsp. at a time to avoid breaking the mixture.
5. Blend or process until very smooth and no pieces of original ingredients are visible. Store mixture in the refrigerator. NOTE: It’s best to allow mixture to “rest” in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.
Serve & Enjoy
~ Makes a whole bunch, about 12 (2 Tbsp.) servings

Verse of the Day:
You satisfy me as with rich food; my mouth will praise You with joyful lips..
~Psalm 63:5 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
Read more here.

Resources of the Day:
1. If you lack my particular aversion to having your measurements taken, you’ll find this article from Weight Watchers extremely helpful and informative!
2. Here’s a quick video tutorial on taking women’s measurements in case you prefer to gain new skills from You Tube…

If you’re like me, you’ll rely on old school measures of weight loss!
Just remember, Pretty Mommies, sometimes the jeans are just too skinny!
Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 5.36.42 PM

+++ For those of you who are interested in following this program according to the letter of the WHOLE30 law, I highly recommend you check out the Forums page on the main WHOLE30 site and specifically that bookmark the “Can I Have” page which contains a wealth of info on practically every topic you could think of. By doing a quick search, I was able to find the following discussion regarding nutrient yeast from 2012. While this is not a definitive approval, it seems the general consensus is that “nooch” (as the vegans call it) is a far better option than dairy or soy-based cheeses and therefor approved if used in moderation. Yippee!

WHOLE30 Day #9 – You Say It’s Your Birthday

Happy and WHOLE(30) Birthday to Me!

Happy WHOLE(30) Birthday to Me! Let’s Celebrate with These Simply Delicious Date Treats!!!

… Well, it’s my birthday too. And as much as I’d like to dive in mouth-first to a great big birthday cake with 3″ of thick sugary buttercream frosting, I’m staying strong. Also, I’m pretty sure that the authors of WHOLE30 would not have a lot of sympathy for me and my birthday cravings. Still, I feel the need for a little treat to celebrate my special day. So I concocted this simple little treat using the following 3 (program approved) ingredients:

3 Simple Ingredients

3 Simple Ingredients

1. All natural almond butter (no sugar added)
2. Whole pitted dates, unsulphured+++
3. Unsweetened shredded coconut

The result tastes a bit like a coconut almond cookie or candy. It’s very sweet and very satisfying. You really only need one or two (at most) of these treats to really feel as though you’ve just enjoyed a delicious dessert. Good thing too, because according to WHOLE30 program rules, these kind of sweets should (for the most part) be avoided during the program. I reasoned that these little treats were acceptable this once because 1.) I used all approved ingredients (hopefully, see note below regarding dried fruit). 2.) I was not trying to recreate any specific naughty traditional dessert (e.g. these are NOT paleo pecan pie bars); and 3.) the healthy fat helps to blunt the impact of the sugar in the dates; and 4.) lastly because this type of small indulgence is important for me to remain motivated and enthusiastic about staying the WHOLE30 course.

If you’re interested in recreating my birthday treats, be forewarned, it can get a bit messy. But the results are deliciously worth it! So here’s the process:
1. Stir almond butter so it’s smooth and has a consistent texture.
2. Spoon several Tbsp. of almond butter into a plastic sandwich bag. Try to keep the butter closer to one bottom corner of the bag.
3. Refrigerate the almond butter baggie for at least an hour (this makes it easier to work with).
4. Place about 10 dates on a plate. TIP: Take out a few more than you expect to make. Invariably, a couple of the dates will be smushed and unusable for this recipe.
5. Snip one end of the plastic bag and roll the almond butter portion of the bag into as narrow a cone-like shape as possible.
6. Pipe the almond butter into each date, smoothing out any that leaks out.
7. Gently roll each date in coconut flakes and store in refrigerator.  Enjoy!

These delicious little treats are the perfect way to celebrate health with someone you love!

These delicious little treats are the perfect way to celebrate health with someone you love!

Thought for the Day:
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.
~Galatians 6:9 (ESV)
Read more here.

+++ After posting this recipe, I read about approved and unapproved additives during WHOLE30 as I continued to educate myself on the program. I encourage anyone considering WHOLE30 to begin reading and researching the program rules and to familiarize yourself with the wealth of free info and tools available at the WHOLE30 website. Anyway, the dates I used in this recipe (e.g. Sunsweet brand) do not include sulfites on the ingredients list nor do the manufacturers indicate sulphites included during processing (even on the Sunsweet website because I looked). But neither the bag nor the website states the product is sulphite-free which is a pretty big selling point among dried fruits, so I’m left to wonder. Sulfites are definitely off limits during WHOLE30 so when in doubt, choose a brand that clearly states “unsulphured” or “sulphite-free.”

WHOLE30 Day#3 – The Struggle Is Real & the Search for Substitutes

The revised pop is the one on top :)

The revised pop is the one on top 🙂

Day #3 of our WHOLE30 process, and I’m feeling some ambivalence – sort of frustrated but still motivated to move forward. After yesterday’s foiled attempt to conceal my illegal coffee creamer consumption, I’ve decided to view this as a process and am no longer expecting perfection from myself. Not sure if that’s a cop-out or a wise perspective to adopt moving forward. Nevertheless, I’ve chosen to keep the coffee creamer for now, with all its artificial ingredients with the goal of giving up the creamer by the end of our WHOLE30 process.

I have decided instead to focus on finding a healthy and natural substitute for my beloved sugar-free tropical (artificially) flavored popsicles which are full of unpronounceable chemicals and dangerous food dyes. I recognize that according to the authors of It Starts with Food, would not recommend frequent consumption of fruit juice. However, to my mind, swapping out acesulfame potassium, locust bean gum, red and yellow dyes for pure unsweetened, unadulterated fruit juice seems a step in the right direction. Here’s what I did:

WHOLE30-ISH Juice Pops:

•2 cups unsweetened organic pineapple juice
•1 cup pure cranberry juice (check to ensure no added sugar or additives)
•2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice

1. Stir all liquids to combine and pour into a storage bottle (you will have extra liquid).
2. Lightly spray popsicle molds with coconut oil spray to prevent sticking and ensure easier removal.
3. Pour liquid into molds and insert sticks. Then simply pop the molds into the freezer for several hours or over night.
4. When frozen, allow the molds to sit for 5-10 minutes at room temperature before removing. Then place popsicles in freezer bag.

This recipe makes roughly 24 popsicles at about 17 calories per pop.

Wisdom of the Day:
Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
~Proverbs 16:24 (NASB)
Read more here.

Recommended Resource for the Day:
Imperfectly Paleo

Quick & Easy Crispy Potatoes

Crispy Potatoes served with Eggs & Bacon

Crispy Potatoes served with Eggs & Bacon

1.5 lb. Baby Red Potatoes, washed (unpeeled)
1 Tbsp. Coconut Oil (I used extra virgin)
1 tsp. Salt
1/4 tsp. Garlic Powder
Dash Oregano Flakes

1. Wash and dry potatoes but do not peel. Cut them into more or less uniform size pieces, which for me was into halves and thirds depending on the size of each potato.
2. Place the potato pieces along with all remaining ingredients in a bowl. No need to stir just yet. Microwave on HIGH for 5-7 minutes depending on the strength of your microwave.
3. While the potatoes cook, preheat over to 400 degrees (Fahrenheit), and spray a cookie sheet with nonstick spray (I used coconut oil).
4. Remove potatoes from microwave and stir well. Then turn mixture onto prepared cookie sheet, being sure to distribute evenly on sheet.
5. Bake potatoes in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes until desired crispiness.

Salty, Crispy and Soft in the Middle - These Potatoes Are Guaranteed to Chase Away Any Potato Chip Cravings You May Be Experiencing

Salty, Crispy and Soft in the Middle – These Potatoes Are Guaranteed to Chase Away Any Potato Chip Cravings You May Be Experiencing

Makes 4-5 servings.
NOTE: These also make great hash browns!

Wisdom of the Day:
This is the day which the Lord has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24 (NASB)
Read more here.

The Perfect Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Smoothie

Perfect Chocolate PB Protein Shake

Is there anything better than chocolate and peanut butter together? I recently re-discovered the wonders of PB2 peanut butter powder PB2. It’s so delicious and can be used in a multitude of applications. My favorite is an ingredient in protein shakes, but I’ve have success using it to replace full-fat peanut butter or tahini in savory sauces (Peanut Sauce or Reduced Fat Hummus, etc.). It’s great stirred into oatmeal or sprinkled on sliced fruit. And the nutritional profile cannot be topped. Only 45 calories for 2 Tbsp. (versus about 200 calories in 2 Tbsp. of traditional PB), with only 1 gram of fat and 10 fat calories per serving and no added sugar; 4 grams protein and only 5 grams net carbohydrates. Pretty awesome huh? Give the recipe below a try and experiment with the PB2 in other recipes as well. I look forward to hearing how you like it.


• 1 scoop SUNWARRIOR Warrior Protein Powder (vanilla flavor)
• 1 Tbsp. whole flax or chia seeds
• 2/3 cup unsweetened almond of cashew milk
• 1 ½ cup still loosely packed raw spinach
• 2 Tbsp. Unsweetened cocoa powder
• 1.5 – 2 Tbsp. PB2 powdered peanut butter product
• ¼ tsp. vanilla extract
• 6-10 ice cubes (I used 8)
• Stevia to taste

Put ice cubes, frozen spinach and milk into blender jar first. Add all remaining ingredients. Blend well until smooth and with no chunks of green, etc. Pour into a sealable jars (e.g. Mason jars), cover and freeze for 15-30 minutes (I like extra thick shakes, so I freeze mine 30-45 minutes) or drink immediately. Serves 1.

I end up with two of these:


Nutritional Breakdown Per Recipe:
Calories – 206 Calories from Fat – 82
Total Fat – 9.1g Transfats – 0g
Net Carbohydrates – 8.3g Fiber – 9.7g
Protein – 24.2g Sodium – 623mg

Hi I'm Karen.

I appreciate you stopping by Daily Beauty Wisdom.

I hope while you're here you find some tips, tricks and recipes to help you feel healthier and prettier, save some money, and live a life filled with wisdom and beauty.

Before you leave, don't forget to enter your email in the subscription box below. You'll automatically receive all new DBW posts and content sent directly to your mailbox of choice.

So be sure to subscribe and never miss another dose of Daily Beauty Wisdom!