Here I share some health conscious/copper & gut friendly recipes that I have developed, that are quite delicious indeed.
*I have copious recipes to add to this page, and will be doing so soon, stay tuned! 🙂*
*Scroll to the bottom for some helpful miscellaneous tips that I’ve gathered along the way*
Here is a list of recipes I’ve added as of now:
- Vegetable & Meat Frittata
- Low Copper-Friendly Chili
- Rutabaga Mash
- Gut Healing and Anti-Inflammatory Stewed Apples
- Almond Flour Chocolate Chip Cookies (cheat item!)
- Simple Apple Cider Vinegar Salad Dressing
- Fresh Made Healing Juices
- Miscellaneous Tips
Vegetable & Meat Frittata
*I’ve come to discover that frittatas are one of the easiest dishes to make while following this eating plan, are absolutely delicious, and contain all safe and healing ingredients for a low-copper/gut friendly protocol – win win win! This is one that I typically make, but as with most recipes, you can add or exclude any ingredient to make it more to your liking for sure. This recipe makes 2 medium to large sized baking pans, plenty to serve your family. I actually excluded dairy entirely for gut healing purposes. This recipe includes cheese, but can very easily be made without. They are both delicious.
-Chopped yellow or red onions (high FODMAP, if tolerated)
-Fresh arugula/mustard greens
-Zucchini – about 3 to 4 medium to large
-Fresh organic tomatoes
-Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper
-Coconut oil (organic/cold-pressed/unrefined) and butter
-Protein of your choice: organic breakfast chicken or pork sausage (pork is slightly higher in copper but can be eaten sporadically with no problem), ground beef (grass-fed, organic), link sausage, etc.
-Shredded cheddar/monterey jack cheese (organic, raw cheeses are best, however if you can’t find them, look for just organic, “Horizon” has a line that is found in most common grocery stores)
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-Chop all vegetables into bite sized pieces and saute in a large skillet with butter, coconut oil, and spices – except the tomatoes and greens, those will be added in fresh at the end.
-At the same time, brown your meat of choice in a little olive oil – you don’t have to cook it entirely, as the baking time will fully cook it, I prefer to get a little crisp of whatever protein I am using as I like the texture better. I like to add some of my spices to the meat as well, if it isn’t pre-spiced as a lot of sausage products already are.
-Slice tomatoes and put to the side
-In a large bowl, whisk all eggs until smooth, adding sea salt and black pepper – once whisked, add as much or as little cheese as you’d like, or none at all if eating dairy-free
-In another large bowl, combine vegetables and meat, and then add the fresh greens and stir together until well-combined
-Grease the baking pans with coconut oil liberally
-Add your meat and vegetable mixture to fill each one evenly followed by the egg mixture and the fresh tomatoes
-Swirl together until all of the ingredients are evenly distributed throughout the baking pan
-Bake at 350 for about 25-35 minutes, checking regularly. When the middle doesn’t move when shaken, they are done.
-Remove from oven and add a little more shredded cheese on the top and let it melt (if eating dairy) – allow the frittata to set for about 10-15 minutes and ENJOY!!
Low Copper-Friendly Chili
*This chili recipe is very versatile, as you can add or remove any ingredient and it will be equally delicious! It differs from “traditional” chili in that it doesn’t include any beans, but for the most part, it’s pretty similar. This is also a great recipe to make HUGE batches of (which is what this recipe listed below calls for) and store in the freezer for future use. As we all know, some nights (a lot of nights in fact 🙂 ) we don’t really feel like spending a couple hours preparing dinner, nor do we have the time often. As I’ve explained in additional posts, I try to cook big batches of whatever it is that I’m cooking (other than fish dishes, etc. which have to be prepared fresh each time) and that makes it a lot easier to conveniently snack and have prepared meals throughout the week*
-Yellow onions (high FODMAP, if tolerated)
-Freshly chopped garlic (high FODMAP, if tolerated)
-Ground beef or turkey (grass-fed, hormone/antibiotic free) – about 2 pounds – you can also use chicken as well.
-Zucchini (freshly washed with Grapefruit Seed Extract – see my Copper Toxicity Diet page for cleaning instructions) – about 12 of them
-Organic Grape tomatoes and/or medium sized vine tomatoes – about 3 containers of grape tomatoes or 6 to 7 vine tomatoes
-Organic free-range chicken broth (which is not hard to find, thankfully)
-Various herbs and spices: turmeric (this turns everything it touches yellow, so I often wear gloves when handling it, and make sure to wash my cooking supplies immediately after they come in contact with it), ground sage, fresh and dried basil leaves, tarragon, cilantro (fresh and dried), fresh ground black pepper, fresh ground sea salt, oregano leaves, cumin (has a lovely smoky flavor), coriander, and sometimes I add cinnamon, which may sound strange but its really delicious! Clearly, chili powder, garlic powder, and onion powder are all really delicious in chili, if you tolerate high FODMAP foods – the amounts of these are totally up to you, I use less or more depending on if I am the only one eating this (I like more spices) or if I’m serving others (whom I’ve found typically prefer their food less spicy).
*Typically, chili will include bell peppers, which I add from time to time. They are high in lectins, which are mostly avoided due to the fact that they can exacerbate or cause leaky gut. It’s all about balance. Tomatoes are higher lectin too, which is why this recipe is eaten from time to time.
-In a large skillet, add a liberal amount of organic, extra-virgin olive oil to coat the bottom and brown the meat protein on medium heat (I often combine the meat with some of the herbs listed above to enhance the overall richness and flavor of the dish, prior to browning it – specifically, tons of ground sage gives it an excellent flavor) You won’t need to cook it all through just yet, because the remaining cooking will be accomplished once it simmers with the vegetables. I like to turn up the heat some and give the meat a slight crispiness on the outside.
-In a LARGE chili pot, add chopped vegetables (however big or small you prefer) with a liberal amount of coconut oil, and all of the herbs and spices listed above, saute (stirring occasionally) on medium heat
-Allow the vegetables to saute until tender, adding about 1/2 cup of chicken broth to the vegetables at a time, stirring frequently (I only add a little gradually as to not make my chili too soupy, however, if that is what you’d prefer, feel free to add more with a little bit of spring water as well)
-Add the meat and combine all ingredients, reduce the heat to medium low, cover, and allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, for at least 20-30 minutes. I usually simmer for about 45 minutes, making sure it does not reach a boil, as this really allows all of the delicious flavors to come together well
*If you are currently eating dairy, topping this dish with sour cream and pepper jack or cheddar cheese is very good as well! (I excluded dairy permanently to continue to heal my gut)
*Again, this is a very versatile recipe, so feel free to add or exclude whatever you wish! Green beans, collard greens, celery and mustard greens are also very tasty to add
*This is a spin off of a recipe that my mother taught me a few Thanksgiving holidays ago…it is traditionally made with sautéed onions and bacon, however I do not include either and it is equally as delicious! As onions are high FODMAP, I avoid them for now, but feel free to include them if you find that you are not sensitive to high FODMAP foods.
-3 large rutabagas (sometimes referred to as turnips…they are slightly larger than a soft ball and have a rough, purple and brown outer appearance)
-organic butter – about 2 tablespoons, give or take
-organic, cold-pressed, unrefined, virgin coconut oil – about 2 tablespoons, give or take (there are some varieties that will highlight the fact that they are “organic” on the label, but it is also key to make sure it is unrefined, as the heating process that is involved in refining food products often removes all of the nutritional goodness that they authentically house)
-black pepper and sea salt
-various herbs – I normally use tarragon, basil, sage, and oregano…I used to use tons of curry powder in this dish as well, before finding out that it is high FODMAP. Again, if you find that high FODMAP foods are not a problem for you, by all means add curry powder, it is so so good in this recipe! (you can use as much or as little as you’d like with all of the aforementioned herbs)
-Add a liberal amount of spring water to a LARGE pot at medium high heat, eventually bringing to a boil
-Peel and chop the rutabagas: now this can be a challenge so it is important to be prepared. Make sure that your peeler is heavy-duty, as there is often a wax coating on the outside of the vegetable that can be difficult to remove. Also, they can be VERY HARD to chop, so make sure you have a big, strong knife to get the job done. I usually put a slice in the north and south end at first and wiggle the knife to split it in half…and then lay each half on its flat side and chop from there…if often takes me putting a great deal of my upper body strength into it, but hey, its a great arm workout! 🙂 Chop into about 1 inch by 1 inch cubes so that they boil faster
-Boil the rutabagas until tender – which can take a while so I usually cover them, sometimes with the lid a little off center to avoid boil over – set aside about 45 to 50 minutes for this, depending on how many rutabagas you used
-Once the cubed rutabagas are tender, strain the pot of all of the water and mash them. I like to leave some large pieces as I’ve found it gives it a more versatile texture
-Add all of the remaining ingredients (butter, coconut oil, herbs & spices, sea salt & pepper)
-Taste test – I always taste along the way to see if it needs more spice or salt…after a few tries you’ll get it just right
ENJOY! This is an excellent dish to make large batches of (as will most everything I prepare), so feel free to increase all of the ingredients to make more or less. I often keep a large glass serving container of this in the fridge to add a nice side dish to my proteins or also as an excellent stand-alone snack. Again, sautéing onions in a separate pan with olive oil, all of the herbs, and some sea salt & pepper is excellent too, as long as high FODMAP vegetable aren’t a problem for you.
Gut Healing and Anti-Inflammatory Stewed Apples with Cinnamon
As I mention in my CT Diet page, it is important to charter unforeseen territory once in a while when embarking on this culinary transition. While your new way of eating will soon come to be very enjoyable (at least that is the case for me) it is A-OK to cheat sometimes, as a little treat for yourself and all of your hard work. These cookies are DELICIOUS, and are free of sugar, traditional white flour, and any other component that is detrimental to your health and healing. Yes, almonds and chocolate are both high in copper, but that is why these are considered a cheat item. I originally had them at my older sister’s house one Christmas and then started making them myself every holiday. They are surely a crowd pleaser! Do remember that because almond flour is used, they will have a different consistency than “traditional” cookies, and they won’t change much in shape or size during baking. I’ve always loved to bake, and back when I was a teenager and still hadn’t discovered what was making me so chronically ill, I would spend a lot of summers in my Mom’s kitchen baking, as I found it to be a very enjoyable activity that I could manage while feeling so poorly. I would send my family off to their respective jobs and friend’s houses with huge plates of various baked goodies, for which everyone really appreciated! For that reason I’ll always have a sincere appreciation for baking indeed.
This recipe yields 12 cookies, so I usually triple it to ensure that I’ll get at least one once they are finished! 🙂 Also, while I don’t really follow exact measurements while cooking my main meals, I try to with baking, as they can turn out less than desirable otherwise.
-Almond Flour – 2 1/2 cups
-Sea Salt – 1/4 teaspoon
-Baking Soda – 1/4 teaspoon
-Butter or coconut oil – 1/2 cup (melted)…I usually do a mixture of both to equal a half cup, which is delicious!!
-Organic Vanilla Extract – 1 tablespoon
-Organic Liquid stevia – 4 teaspoons…be careful when purchasing Stevia as well, as sadly a lot of brands include dextrose and other forms of sugar that completely defeat the purpose of avoiding sugar to begin with. I like the “Sweet Leaf” brand, and the Whole Foods 365 house brand as well.
-1 egg, beaten
-73% Dark Chocolate Chips – 1 cup
-Optional: macadamia nuts and/or pecans
-Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl, leaving out the chocolate chips for now. With a spoon, make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients.
-Mix together the wet ingredients. Pour into the well of your dry ingredient bowl and stir until well combined.
-Fold in the chocolate chips. Form 1 to 1 1/2 inch balls with your hands and press flat onto an all-natural parchment-lined baking sheet.
-Bake at 350 degrees (F) for 12-15 minutes, until light brown at the edges. Cool and ENJOY! If the size of the cookies is a bit larger than 1 inch, you will need to bake them for a little longer, just keep checking every few minutes until the edges have reached a golden brown.
**I just made these for Thanksgiving and they turned out wonderfully (after figuring out that I needed to add egg and make sure to use baking soda instead of powder, as well as switching the original powdered stevia to liquid), and I added macadamia nuts to really increase the indulgent factor! ENJOY!**
Simple Homemade Salad Dressing
*While following a diet that is free of sugar, grain, and dairy it is nearly impossible to find a pre-made salad dressing that fits the bill! I decided to try my hand at making my own, and have come up with a simple and quite delicious salad dressing that is excellent when used as a dip or on a salad:
*Measurements will vary depending on your serving sizes, so I will only include the ingredients and you may use less or more according to your personal liking. The ingredients are as follows:
–Organic extra-virgin olive oil (I prefer about 3 parts olive oil to 1 part vinegar)
-Organic apple cider vinegar (with “the mother”, I personally love Braggs brand)
-Ground sea salt
-Fresh ground black pepper
-Ground sage (the kind that is in powder form is most tasty to me)
-Ground basil leaves
*Combine (whisk in a bowl or simply add all ingredients to your spice container and shake)
*You may play around with spices for sure. I am currently following a low FODMAP diet, so I have had to exclude garlic and onion, yet those two ingredients would work with this dressing quite well.
I use a “Nutri Ninja” juicer after having discovered how amazing it was when visiting my father and using his. Unlike most other juicers, it doesn’t excrete the pulp/insoluble fiber, so you aren’t left without all of that extra goodness!! They are super easy to use, and pulverize anything you put in them – overall, an awesome way to get your daily nutrients in a way that is easy for your body to assimilate!
If I’m more in the mood for a pure “juice” I simply strain the fiber and leave the juice – it’s delicious either way. This is also a great way to incorporate any liquid or powdered supplements that are on your protocol – I just add everything in together in the morning and it’s super convenient that way.
Obviously, there are many different ingredients that you can use in your juices, depending on your specific dietary needs and restrictions. Since my diet that is free of all sugar, I primarily use vegetables, greens, citrus, and fresh ginger – except for the “Splurge Juice” listed below – ENJOY!
*For all juices, simply chop all ingredients into medium/small sized pieces, place in juicing container, and pulse for about 15 seconds – If your recipe does not include a lot of lemon juice/apple juice or any other liquid, simply add about 1/2 cup of spring or distilled water to give it a more palatable consistency*
–Fresh organic arugula
-Fresh ginger root (cut into coins, with or without the skin)
-Juice from one whole organic lemon
Using fresh ginger really gives it that extra zing, as I like to call it, and really makes you feel good!
Antioxidant/Liver Cleansing Juice
–Fresh ginger root
–Greens Powder (by Unikey Health)
–Organic Beet Juice Powder (by Synergy Organics)
–Bragg’s organic Apple Cider Vinegar
–Organic baby carrots
–Fresh organic lemon juice (I actually just found a bottled form or organic lemon juice to add to the convenient factor – it is in the juice aisle of most grocery stores and is by Santa Cruz Organics)
My friends joke with me that it’s rather hilarious that I consider “splurging” to be eating a little more fruit than normal, but hey! That’s my deal and I’m sticking to it 🙂
-Organic no sugar added apple juice
-Organic lemon juice
–Fresh ginger root
–A tiny amount of beet juice powder and greens powder (as mentioned above)
*Adding nutmeg and ground sage to beef is a truly delightful addition.
*When cooking all meats, I use food prep gloves to avoid the transmission of parasites…this is also for peace of mind, and keeps my hands soft and clean.
*Also, I clean all of my produce with Grapefruit Seed Extract liquid, which is a very powerful anti-parasite and anti-fungal agent. Simply put all of your chosen vegetables in a large bowl with warm water and about 20-30 drops of GSE and let sit for about 10 minutes then rinse.
*Adding organic chicken broth to your vegetable dishes really kicks them up a notch and adds tons of flavor!
*If you are to eat nuts (which are indeed high in copper and should be limited on a copper lowering protocol), it is important to roast them and/or sprout them (which is a soaking process where you soak them in spring water with sea salt over night and then dehydrate them in the oven at the lowest temperature or in a food dehydrator). This lowers the phytate and anti-nutrient content and allows your body to assimilate the nutrients more efficiently…this also makes them more digestible as often people can experience digestive upset when consuming nuts.
*Dill, fresh lemon juice, and butter/coconut oil are by far the most delicious additions to any fish dish I have ever made.
*Collard greens are very deceiving in size: the bushels appear much larger than they will be once you cook them – I cook about 3 bushels at a time.
*If you do not have a juicer, a blender works just fine for juices…simply pour the mixture through a strainer over a large glass and press down with a large spoon to excrete all of the delicious juice.
*Apple Cider Vinegar is incredible to add to tons of things and is actually great for gut health as opposed to other distilled & white vinegars. You can add it to your salad dressings, juices, vegetable dishes, and basically anything to add some kick as well.
*Zucchini can be used as a pasta substitute (using a special tool called a mandolin), and you can also make “zucchini boats” by cutting them in half length wise and filling them with whatever mixture you’d like and roast them in the oven at 350 for about 10-15 minutes…delicious!
*Fresh sauces and pestos are very easy to make and add variety to all of your protein and vegetable dishes. You can use a Nutri-Ninja, food processor, or a simple sauce pan, all of which work well. I make fresh salsa and tomato sauces often. Just choose your favorite fresh ingredients, add some “good” fat like organic extra-virgin olive oil or coconut oil and blend!
*When eating a whole food diet, it is helpful to cook everything in bulk and store in the refrigerator or freezer to easily reheat on the stove top or in the oven. This way you aren’t having to cook every meal at a time, as we all know some nights that just isn’t possible! I like to spend Sunday afternoons cooking all or most of my various dishes for the week.
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