This weeks tester are:  Cortney and her fiance Justin from Imperial, CA. Both Cortney and Justin have been doing CrossFit at CrossFit Imperial Valley  and from their garage for the past 3 years. Cortney is a part time coach at Crossfit Imperial Valley and also works as the finance manager at her family’s motorcycle dealership, Coyne Powersports. Justin is a PCA (pest control advisor) for Crop Production Services that plays a huge roll in all sorts of agriculture.

“We love any and all things outdoor, traveling and love cooking and of course eating. We snowboard, surf, hike, roadbike, and love being active. We have no kids yet, but we can’t wait to pick up our Australian Labradoodle, Maple in a few weeks.”  said Cortney.

Here are a few pictures from their experience:

Beef Stew with Green Chiles and Yams ready to eat
Frying up the meatballs for the minestrone soup
Minestrone Soup in the stock pot
Veggie and cashew prep for the Kung Pao-leo Shrimp and Scallops
Kung Pao-leo Shrimp and Scallops all plated up and ready to eat. YUM!
hrimp (instead of scallops) with Bacon, Asparagus and Red Peppers
Chicken Curry on the stove (one of my favorite recipes!!)

Thanks a ton Cortney and Justin for these great pictures of your cooking adventure for this weeks meal plan! You guys made some great choices in recipe selections and it looks like everything turned out beautifully. I really appreciate all of your hard work in knocking out these recipes!!

From Nick:

As Katie said above, “Great Job!” I love it all. From the food selections to the story and the awesome pictures, Cortney and Justin knocked this one out of the park! Thank you guys for being awesome, I hope to meet and cook with you one day…

15.44! Seriously? That means there are only 8 weeks left in the year. I hope that you’ll use these two months to get geared up for the New Year and that you hit January 1st in full stride. While the general population makes New Year’s Resolutions that fall by the wayside around January 20th, we are a different race. It is my goal to guide you through healthy habits all year long. While January brings an impetus for change and we might take on a new challenge, there shouldn’t be a drastic difference in your behavior. Small, sustainable changes are the way to go.

Let’s hit these last 2 months strongly, guys. I’m here to help…

“Keep It Paleo!”

Your Pal,

Paleo Nick

A new friend of Cortney and Justin


Approximate Meal Plan Cost As Prescribed:

Chain grocery store (Kroger): $219.00

Warehouse store (Costco or Sam’s): $185.00

The amount you will spend will depend on your geographic location and how much you rely on bulk purchases. As an example, you can get 1 quart of extra light olive oil at Kroger for $19.99 or you can get 4 quarts at Costco for $16.50. You follow? Meat and produce will also be less at the warehouse stores, but might require you purchase more than you’ll need for this plan.Customize Your Plan and Shop It Up!I have created a customize-able grocery list in the form of an Excel spreadsheet. Even if you’re not good with Excel, I’ve set it up in a foolproof way that even “The Jo!” could handle. Follow these instructions:

  1. Open the document and click on the tab at the bottom that says “Menu item & Ingredient Brkdown”.
  2. At the top, you’ll see the number “1” in bold just below each menu item. You can change this number to correspond with the number of portions that you’d like to make. Say you want to make a half batch of the Meatloaf,  change the “1” below the Meatloaf to a “.5” and it will half the listed ingredients for you.
  3. Click back to the tab that says “Meal Plan 15.44 Grocery List” and your quantities will be updated.
  4. Print out the grocery list from the first tab only.
  5. Compare what you need to what you have on hand and finalize your list. Then, head to the grocery store and make your purchases swiftly and efficiently.

Step-By-Step Instructions:

I want you to knock this out in one shopping session, two cooking sessions, and one short finishing session. I’ll explain these now, but want you to scroll down to read my notes on each meal below. They are listed under each picture.

In cooking session one:

  1. Prepare your Beef Stew with Green Chiles and Yams and place in your slow cooker, set the slow cooker on a foil lined sheet pan, and place it in the garage to cook overnight.
  2. Prepare the Magnificent Meatball Minestrone. Portion out the soup and store in your refrigerator for up to one week or freeze for up to six months.
  3. Clean up the kitchen and pat yourself on the back for a day well done.

In cooking session two:

  1. Portion out the Beef Stew and refrigerate up to one week or freeze for up to six months.
  2. Prepare the Chicken Curry over Sweet Potatoes. Eat a portion and properly store the leftovers.
  3. Prepare the Meatloaf and Pomodoro Sauce. Portion out appropriately and store for 1 week in the refrigerator or freeze some portions for up to six months.
  4. Prepare the Scallops with Bacon, Asparagus and Roasted Red Peppers. This is a 1-2 portion meal, so go ahead and eat it up.
  5. Clean up the kitchen and polish up that sink!

In finishing session:

  1. Prepare the Kung Pao-leo Shrimp and Scallops. Enjoy this meal.
  2. Sit back and take it all in. Your Paleo Bank Account is stocked and  now you are a Culinary Ninja who is ready to tackle life with energy, clarity, and confidence. Be sure to tell your friends about!

Beef Stew with Green Chiles & Yams

Notes: When shopping for the stew meat on this recipe, look for packs of pre-cubed meat. Chuck or blade roast works best. For the green chiles, the hot ones will add the most flavor, but you can buy mild if don’t like the heat.

Magnificent Meatball Minestrone

Notes: For this recipe, you will cook the meatballs and soup separately. Once the soup is done, you have the option of adding the meatballs to the pot, or portioning the soup out and then dividing up the meatballs into each portion.

Thai Chicken Curry in a Hurry

Notes: This is one of my favorite recipes on the site! Cortney and Justin chose to put theirs over a baked russet potato. Any way you chose to do it, it is SO GOOD!

Kung Pao-leo Shrimp and Scallops

Notes: This recipe is a quick and delicious option for any Chinese food lover.

Paleo Polpettone (Meatloaf)

Notes:  The recipe for this meatloaf is rather large. You have the option of halving the ingredients if you’d like. Just change the “1” listed below the Meatloaf on the ingredients tab on your grocery list spreadsheet to “.5” and it will half the ingredients for you. Cortney and Justin went with the option of placing their meatloaf over spaghetti squash to add some additional carbs to the dish.

Sea Scallops with Bacon, Asparagus and Roasted Red Peppers

Notes:  For this recipe, Cortney and Justin decided to substitute the scallops for shrimp. Great idea! You are always encouraged to make changes to the recipes as needed. The art of cooking is just that, making it your own.

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