7 Cheap and Easy Whole30 Recipes the Family Can Enjoy
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Are you looking to take back control of your health through diet? Maybe you are considering starting a healthy lifestyle program like the Whole30? If so, you may want to check out some of these great tasting and easy Whole30 recipes listed below!
Personally, I think the Whole30 is an awesome program to follow. It honestly can change your life in a very positive way.
My family has already gone through 3 successful Whole30 rounds over the past year and we have discovered the great benefits of eating whole and unprocessed foods. Even when we are off the program, we still try and keep to 80% of our eating following the guidelines.
It has helped a few of our family members lose over 50 pounds, my son cleared up his asthma while following the program, and I even lost about 8 pounds on average.
And while it will be a bit of a lifestyle change, the benefits are life altering.
Where to Find Easy Whole30 Recipes?
One of the main issues that we have dealt with in the past when starting a Whole30 round is knowing what to eat while on the program. On top of that … we need to stick to a budget and that can be difficult with potentially higher costs for unprocessed foods.
While in some cases, the food is probably more expensive, I still believe there are plenty of cheap (and easy) meals that are Whole30 compliant.
For our family, it hasn’t never been all that hard to complete the program. However, it does take some changes to how we cook and what we prepare to eat for the whole family.
Note – While we want our kids to eat as healthy as possible, we do not make our youngest two children follow the program. They will eat many of the meals that we prepare, but we are not going to make them follow the program.
Preparing for a Whole30 Round
The most important step you can take to finish the Whole30 is to be prepared.
This means having a good idea of the meals you can make during those 30 days that fit within the guidelines.
So in order to be prepared, we have identified 7 clean eating dinners that you can use during the first week of your Whole30.
I have included the list of ingredients for each and links to the original recipes posted on other great blogs.
One last thing – we are not posting the calories in these meals. The Whole30 is not about counting calories at all. The rules are actually very simple. Eat when you are hungry. Stop when you are full. Sounds very simple!
Oh yeah … and when it comes to the higher price of healthy foods … I would much rather spend more money on quality whole foods now than higher medical costs as we grow older.
Now on to the 7 cheap and easy Whole30 recipes –
1. No Bean Chili
Traditional chili recipes usually include beans. Since beans are a legume and not allowed in the program, most chili recipes will need to be tweaked a little.
Here are the ingredients you will need for no bean chili –
- 2 lbs. of ground turkey or beef
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 jalapeno, minced
- 1 cup of carrots, diced
- 1 28-ounce can of organic stewed tomatoes
- 1 14.5-ounce can of diced tomatoes
- 1 15-ounce can of tomato sauce
- 3 Tbsp. chili powder
- 1 Tbsp. paprika
- 2 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. pepper
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
Note – The chili is to be cooked using a slow cooker.
Original Link – Paleo Crock-pot Chili
2. Scrambled Eggs with Veggies
Most first timers on this program will probably find themselves eating a lot of eggs. Eggs are normally easy (and cheap) to cook up and don’t take much preparation at all.
The ingredient list for the scrambled eggs can include all sorts of veggies or whatever you have leftover. These are some ingredients you can use, although feel free to be creative and make use of ingredients you have at home.
- 12 eggs, scrambled
- 1 onion, diced
- 1/2 bell pepper, diced
- 2 tsp. turmeric
- 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1 Tbsp. of Coconut Oil
This is the recipes that our family usually uses for scrambled eggs. We cook up the onions and peppers in a skillet using the coconut oil and then add the eggs to scramble. My wife and I prefer to add some spices – in this case turmeric (which is awesome) and cayenne pepper.
3. Paleo Chop Drop Roasted Veggies
The toughest part of this recipe is trying to find Whole30 approved kielbasa or sausage. Fortunately, there are some brands like Pederson that offers a line of meat products that are paleo friendly!
The ingredients below have been slightly changed from the original recipe.
- 1 lb. Pederson Whole30 approved kielbasa, cut into 1″ sections
- 2 sweet potatoes, cut into 1″ chunks
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 1 red pepper, cut into slices
- 1/2 red onion, cut into slices
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. oregano
- 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
Original Link – Paleo Drop Roasted Veggies
4. Chicken Apple Skillet
Who knew there were so many recipes out there that look delicious and are so healthy for you? This is another great looking recipe that does not contain any artificial ingredients.
Just like in a few other recipes, the following ingredients have been adjusted from the original (link below). One word of caution – if you plan to use bacon, make sure it is Whole30 approved. Believe it or not, but almost all bacon contains added sugar!
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2″ cubes
- 4 slices Pederson brand approved bacon, chopped
- 3 cups brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered
- 1 sweet potato, peeled, cut into 1/2″ cubes
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 apples, peeled, cored, cut into 3/4″ cubes
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 cup chicken stock
Note – The apple skillet may take a little more planning and work than the other recipes but I think it will be worth it. Just like with the kielbasa, you need to make sure you find no sugar added bacon which can get a little tricky.
Original Link – Chicken Apple Skillet
5. Portobello Mushrooms
Here is another awesome Whole30 recipe that is simple and cheap to make. You can cook these portobello’s on the grill or even bake them in the oven.
Just sprinkle some olive oil on them with a little black pepper, salt, and garlic powder and you are good to go!
- 6 to 8 portobello mushroom caps
- olive oil
- black pepper
- garlic powder
No original recipe to link to, but I have found that putting them in the oven for about 20 minutes at 400 ℉ usually does the trick.
6. Crock-pot Chicken Tacos (no shell)
For a busy family, one of the hardest things to do is find the time to cook. Following the Whole30 program makes that even more difficult. Fortunately, there are meals that can be prepared in advanced using a slow cooker.
One of my favorite slow cooker recipes that the entire family enjoys are crock-pot chicken tacos. The original recipe (link below) was not completely paleo friendly. With a few tweaks however, we have another easy go-to recipe the family can enjoy.
Here are the ingredients (adapted) –
- 5 boneless chicken breasts
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 14.5-ounce can of diced tomatoes
- 1 jalapeno, diced
- 3 Tbsp. paleo friendly taco seasoning
- 1 avocado for topping
- 1 head iceberg lettuce
Note – Don’t use any taco shells with this recipe. Instead, spoon out the chicken taco mixture into iceberg lettuce leafs and use sliced avocado for a topping. You will also need to find (or make) paleo friendly taco seasoning.
Original Link – Crock-pot Chicken Tacos
7. Baked Coconut Chicken
If you like chicken and the taste of coconut, then you are sure to love this Whole30 recipe. Just be sure to get the unsweetened coconut flakes, which are actually hard to find in a regular grocery store.
Our family likes to bake our coconut chicken (instead of using the frying pan as the original recipe suggests). Here are the basic ingredients –
- 5 or 6 boneless chicken breasts
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1/4 cup coconut, shredded and unsweetened
- 2 eggs
Note – The recipe is really simple. Beat the eggs first and then coat the chicken breasts in them. Next, dip the chicken in the almond flour/coconut and place them in the oven. We bake ours for 30-40 minutes in the oven at 350 ℉.
Original Link – Coconut Chicken
Easy Whole30 Recipes – Side Dishes
All of the recipes listed above will help take care of the main dishes for at least a week of the Whole30 program. In some cases, the main dish will serve as the whole meal. For example, the paleo chili won’t require a side for the meal.
In other cases, like in the baked coconut chicken recipe, you will likely need a side or two for the meal.
So … in order to be prepared … we have created a list of side items that are good to have ready to go during the first week.
Here are a few side dishes you could have ready to pair with one of the Whole30 recipes above –
- sweet potatoes
- other roasted root vegetables – carrots, beets, etc.
- salads – spring mix or spinach
- brussel sprouts
As you can see from the list above, there is one common theme – veggies!
Easy Whole30 Recipes – Eating Healthy
Since this is our first go at the Whole30, there will certainly be several lifestyle changes we will need to make. No more snacking on chips or peanuts at night. Learning to always read food labels and knowing what is allowed will take some getting used to.
One step that we are taking to make it easier is to have a plan of what meals we plan to cook. Breakfast and lunch for the most part have never been an issue for us. We generally eat paleo foods and shouldn’t have an issue. It is our family meals at dinnertime that we need to be prepared for.
Hopefully the list of 7 easy and cheap meals listed above will get us adjusted during the first week of the Whole30.
Have you completed the Whole30? Did you plan out your meals to make it easier to adjust to the lifestyle?