This week’s tester is Ashley Goebel. Ashley didn’t provide any personal information to share this week. Thanks Ashley for participating by choosing 7 great recipes. Ashley’s choices are all new selections to this year of meal plans.

I got the chance to benefit from this issue by preparing a new recipe myself. It turned out spectacular! Dale (my husband) also agreed to tackle the second recipe that needed to be tested with his crew of 7 at the local Fire Station. The results didn’t disappoint and the crew got to enjoy a new meal together. These guys cook 1/3 of their meals together a year, so they always like new recipes.


Approximate Meal Plan Cost As Prescribed:

Chain grocery store (Kroger): $190.00
Warehouse store (Costco or Sam’s): $155.00

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 “Creamy Coconut Cauliflower Risotto”, change the “1” below the heading to a “.5” and it will halve the listed ingredients for you. Or if you’d  like to make a double batch of the “Stir Fry Shrimp and Squash,” change the heading from “1” to “2” and it will increase the ingredient amounts for you. Make sense?
  3. Click back to the tab that says “Meal Plan 16.41 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 the notes on each meal below. They are listed under each picture.

In cooking session one:

  1. Prepare the Stir Fry with Shrimp and Squash recipe. Enjoy this 2 portion meal as your lunch or dinner and fuel up to tackle the next recipe. Properly store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  2. Prepare the Italian Grilled Chicken Breast and allow to marinade for the next 1-2 days.
  3. Prepare the Chicken Cacciatore. Portion out and store in the refrigerator for up to one week or label and freeze for up to six months.
  4. Prepare the Creamy Coconut Cauliflower Risotto while the Cacciatore is cooking. Portion this out into servings and properly store in the refrigerator for up to one week or freeze for up to six months. This will pair well with the Cacciatore also.
  5. Clean up the kitchen and pat yourself on the back for a day well done.

In cooking session two:

  1. Prepare the Lemon Ginger Chicken Soup. Enjoy a serving for lunch. Portion out and properly store in the refrigerator for up to one week or freeze for up to six months.
  2. Prepare the Shrimp Curry Stuffed Mushrooms. Enjoy a portion for dinner. Portion out and properly store all remaining servings.
  3. Clean up the kitchen and polish up that sink!

In finishing session:

  1. Prepare the Italian Grilled Chicken Breast and Chipotle Butternut Fries. Enjoy this meal for lunch or dinner today. Properly store any leftover portion for 5-7 days in the refrigerator.
  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!

Stir Fry Shrimp and Squash

Notes: This is a new recipe for our weekly meal plans. It is loaded with veggies and is an Asian inspired dish, which can be adjusted in heat levels by adjusting the amount of Sambal added.

This recipe yields 2 servings, but can quickly doubled or tripled to serve family style. It is a quick dinner option for any night of the week. Be sure to recruit other household members to help chop the veggies and it will go even faster.

Chicken Cacciatore

Notes: This meal was tested by the crew at Station 94. Dale shopped the day before their shift and went to work prepared to knock this recipe out. His crew is made up of 7 hungry guys and this meal did not disappoint. They decided to smoke their own sausages in the station smoker which added even more flavor to the dish. The skipped out of the wine ingredient, due to being on shift, even though the alcohol pretty much cooks off during the process.

They spent 1 hour prepping this meal, including the time it took to smoke the sausages, 2 hours cooking the dish and made about 14 servings. All the guys ate a healthy portion and they had a large storage dish of leftovers.

Creamy Coconut Cauliflower Risotto

Notes: I made this recipe right after the recipe came out a few months back. It is a great rice replacement for any meal. The coconut milk and mushrooms add just enough to the dish. The recipe makes a very large amount. I’d say 10-12 portions. I froze some of mine and have yet to test the re-heated product. You always have the option of halving the recipe.

Lemon Ginger Chicken Soup

Notes: Ashley completed this meal and thought it was very good. She wouldn’t change a thing about it.

Now that the weather is cooling down, soup is a great, quickly re-heated option to through on the stove for dinner any night. The basil adds such great flavor to this meal.

The soup yields 10-4P, 3C block meals and should freeze well. It should take about 30 minutes to prep and around 20-30 minutes to cook.

Italian Grilled Chicken Breast

Notes: Chicken breast is always a great protein option and this recipe is easy to throw together and toss in the fridge to marinade. You can grab one and cook it off in no time or make a meal of it by preparing the Chipotle Butternut Fries recipe below and pairing them together. The picture above shows them atop of our Bacon Wrapped Butternut Pucks, which is also a wonderful side dish to eat with the chicken.

This recipe can marinade for up to 3 days. The longer they sit, the more flavor you should achieve, so prep them out and get them in the refrigerator today.

You should get 3-5 block portions from this meal and after marinading, will take about 15-20 minutes to grill.

Chipotle Butternut Fries

Notes: We make these often in my home and let me just say, if you haven’t made these yet, do yourself a favor and give this quick recipe a try. It’s a great side option to pair with almost any meal! Adjust the seasoning to your liking to add more or less heat.

Shrimp Curry Stuffed Mushrooms

Notes: I made this dish while watching football on Sunday and was super impressed! It was so tasty and the mushroom caps gave the curry based dish an added spunk. I made mine with baby Bella’s because that was my best option while shopping. I didn’t cut the shrimp in half like in the video, because the last time I followed that step on a different recipe, my shrimp became over cooked and chewy. No one likes chewy shrimp.

This tasty dish took me 30 minutes to prep, 20 minutes to cook and made 4-6 portions. I paired it with rice after my mushroom caps were gone.

Here are the pictures from the meals Ashley selected:

Ashley’s completed meals: Stir Fry with Shrimp and Squash, Chipotle Butternut Fries, Lemon Ginger Chicken Soup, Italian Grilled Chicken Breast
Dale’s contribution coming from Station 94 Chicken Cacciatore
Shrimp Curry Stuffed Mushrooms coming at you from my kitchen

Thank you Ashley for your input with this weeks plan. I hope your move went well. Life gets in the way sometimes and we just have to do what we can. Due to this Dale and I each had the opportunity to test one of this week’s recipe selections. It was a pleasant task and my taste-buds thanked me for doing it. I know Dale and his crew loved their meal and they did a great job working together to prepare it. Thanks guys!

From Nick:

Thank you, Ashley, Dale, Katie and the crew at Henderson Fire! A special shout out to Robert Rodriguez because traffic always spikes at the mention of his name on this site.

I liked seeing Ashley’s selections because they were unique and might be called “oldies but goodies.” Things are cranking at Paleo Headquarters, so I am going to keep this one short, but wanted to be sure to thank everyone involved in making this week’s meal plan happen.

“Keep It Paleo!”

Your Pal,

Paleo Nick

Michael, Dale and Matt visiting an old lady they took to the hospital that broke her hip a few months earlier

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