Finding delicious, nutritious food that fits within my specific dietary restrictions used to be SO HARD. I would spend hours trying to figure out what I can and can’t eat, wonder if it’s going to taste good, and seriously get sad thinking about all the food I miss and can’t eat anymore (um, hello, talking to you general chicken). But, I can say confidently now that I eat really well, and it’s all so clean and healthy. I look at food with a healthier mindset, meaning, I appreciate whole foods and I don’t look for additives to make food taste good. I eat good food to fuel my body, and I don’t feel like I’m missing out. Even my cheat meals and sweets are healthy and nutritious, and I have always been a sweets girl. I can’t wait to share more with you about my go-to foods, I’ve got a pretty solid roundup of great snacks and recipes for those looking for gluten free, dairy free, low sugar, low carb, etc.
Today I want to talk about one of my absolute favorite meals that Simon and I make every week. Yes, you read that right; we make this meal every week and I can’t get enough of it! And if you’ve known me for a while, you would know that I get bored with food quickly and I have a hard time eating leftovers. I know, so bratty. I’m working on it.
It’s so simple, so delicious, and so clean. Literally, it’s marinated grilled chicken and vegetables. You’re probably thinking: “So, what? Sounds boring. How is this any different than what I can make?”
Well, let me first tell you this: when you live with an autoimmune disease, one of the biggest triggers for flare ups is gluten (especially in my case with ulcerative colitis; but really, everyone with an autoimmunity should be following a gluten free, dairy free, etc. diet). I recently finished a book on autoimmune disease and how to get into remission naturally, and much of this book coincided with what my holistic doctor recommended I do in regards to changing my diet and taking the right supplements and vitamins. So, like I said in an earlier post, I keep a gluten free, dairy free diet and watch my sugar and alcohol intake, and I avoid nightshade vegetables when I can (goodbye, ketchup, tomatoes and peppers). Gluten hides in everything. Seriously, I’m not being dramatic. It’s in sauces, toothpaste, lotion, shampoo/conditioner, and so much more that shocked me. I’m really trying to be conscientious about the sauces I’m using so I’m not accidentally exposed to gluten or dairy. And let me tell you, I’ve found the perfect brands that make my belly and taste buds really happy.
If you’re still reading, thank you for sticking around. I’m almost done.
Finding a marinade for our chicken and vegetables that tastes AMAZING and is gluten free/dairy free and healthy wasn’t easy. We stumbled, made mistakes, I paid for those mistakes; then we found the BEST marinades and we’ve been hooked ever since. Stubbs Smokey Mesquite BBQ sauce for our chicken and Brianna’s French Vinaigrette for our vegetables- which, by the way, this flavor of Brianna’s is gluten free, sugar free, vegan, egg free, msg free, lactose free, vegetarian, nut free, and 0 carbs. ZERO CARBS. I can’t. Game over. I eat everything I can with this french dressing. It’s tangy and light, and my mouth is actually watering thinking about it. It’s pairs so well with mushrooms, zucchini and sweet onions. I highly recommend this dressing.
We shop at Hyvee and Ruby’s Natural Market for most of our groceries, and both of these items can be purchased from those stores. Both brands have multiple products, but those are our favorites and the healthiest choice from the sauces and dressings they offer.
If you’ve been struggling to find a new dinner to make, give this one a try and let me know what you think. We like to marinate our chicken and veggies for one full day, but that’s totally up to you and your personal preference. We’ve let our food marinate for 6-8 hours several times and it’s still just as delicious. We marinate 6 chicken breasts and 3 zucchini, 2 big packages of portobello mushroom caps (purchased at Sam’s but most grocers sell big packs), and two sweet onions on Sunday nights; then we grill for the week on Monday nights. This usually lasts us until about Thursday night, but sometimes we eat a little more than we should 🙂
That’s it! I’d love to know your favorite weekday meals and if you meal prep. While I don’t plan on changing our weekly dinners anytime soon because I’m so obsessed, I do like to switch up my lunches to keep myself from getting bored eating the same thing day after day. As always, thank you for your support and encouragement, I have loved being able to share my journey.