This week’s tester is: Jesse Marshall, his girlfriend Leah, and their daughter Kirra from Yuma, AZ. Jesse is a border patrol agent. In his spare time, he enjoys fishing, anything he can find to do outdoors and watching sports. A pair of previous testers, Ashley and Josh Dawley, introduced Jesse to Paleo – see how this stuff catches on?!
Approximate Meal Plan Cost As Prescribed:
Chain grocery store (Kroger): $175.00
Warehouse store (Costco or Sam’s): $149.00
Your final tally will depend on your geographic location and how much you rely on bulk purchases. As an example, you can get one quart of extra light olive oil at Kroger for $19.99 or you can get four quarts at Costco for $16.50. You follow? Meat and produce will also be less at the warehouse stores, but might mean you’re buying more than you’ll need for this plan.
Customize Your Plan and Shop It Up!
I have created a customizable grocery list in the form of an Excel spreadsheet. Even if you’re no good with Excel, I’ve set it up in a foolproof way that even “The Jo!” could handle. Just follow these instructions:
- Open the document and click on the tab at the bottom that says “Menu item & Ingredient Brkdown.”
- 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 double batch of the Alaskan Eggs Benedict (since it is only a one serving meal) – just change the “1” to a “2” and it will increase the ingredients for this recipe. Make sense?
- Click back to the tab that says “Meal Plan 17.1 Grocery List” and your quantities will be updated.
- Print out the grocery list from the first tab only.
- 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.
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 make sure to scroll down to the notes on each meal below. They are listed beneath each picture.
In cooking session one:
- Prepare the Beef Tongue Pot Roast, place it in the slow cooker, set the slow cooker on a foil-lined sheet pan, and leave it on your counter or in your garage to cook for 7-12 hours overnight.
- Prepare the Super Radical Game Hens with Avo Studded Yams. Enjoy a portion of this as your dinner. Properly store any remaining portions in your refrigerator for three to five days or freeze up to six months.
- Clean up the kitchen and pat yourself on the back for a day well done.
In cooking session two:
- Portion out the Pot Roast and refrigerate for up to seven days or freeze for up to six months. Clean out the slow cooker and load it up with the Scallion Thai’d Chaing Mai Cabbage Wraps. Set the slow cooker on a foil-lined sheet pan and place on the counter or in the garage to cook for the next six hours.
- Start the clarified butterrecipe for the Hollandaise sauce you will make tomorrow.
- Prepare the Thai Lamb Chops with Asparagus. Eat this for a meal and store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to five days.
- Portion out the Cabbage Wraps once it is done and store in the refrigerator overnight to cool. Eat over the next five days.
- Clean up the kitchen and polish up that sink!
In finishing session:
- Prepare the Holly, Holly, Hollandaise and Alaskan Eggs Benedict and enjoy this for breakfast.
- Prepare the Acorn Squash Molcajete. Portion out and store in the refrigerator for five to seven days or freeze for up to six months.
- Sit back and take it all in. Your Paleo Bank Account is stocked and you’ve become a Culinary Ninja ready to tackle life with energy, clarity, and confidence. Be sure to tell your friends about PaleoNick.com!
Notes: “I loved this recipe and wouldn’t change a thing about it. The beef tongue was very tender and it all tied together nicely. Great meal for a cold day,” Jesse proclaimed.
Now I know some of you are thinking that beef tongue isn’t your idea of a good meal, but if you have never tried it, now is a great time. I have had it in tacos a handful of times and it really is quite tasty. If you don’t see it in your local super market, ask the butcher, they almost always have it. If they don’t, seek out a local Mexican market, you’ll be sure to find it there, as it is a very popular cooking item in the Mexican culture.
Jesse spent ten minutes prepping this slow cooker meal, ten hours cooking it, and yielded seven large portions.
Notes: “This was such a simple, yummy meal! The yams mixed with serrano peppers was a delicious touch!” Jesse shared.
This recipe use the Super Radical Rib Rub. If you don’t already have a bottle on hand, you can find the recipe to make your own batch here. You will need to add the ingredients to your grocery list if you choose to go this route.
Jesse spent ten minutes prepping this meal, forty-five minute cooking it, and made six portions, cutting each game hen in half.
Notes: “While this meal was a little time consuming to prep, it exploded with flavor and was one of our favorites. It was Leah’s number one favorite!” Jesse said.
This meal does involve a ton of prep, but in the end, you will be happy you made it. The scallion ties and cabbage leaves need to be blanched prior to making the wraps. I have made this recipe myself and the only trouble I had with it, was having enough large cabbage leaves to use all of the filling that goes into the wraps. Please see the note on the grocery list to avoid this issue yourself. You will also want to slow cook these on low to avoid them falling apart in the Crock Pot.
Jesse spent forty-five minutes prepping his wraps, six and a half hours slow cooking them, and made six portions of two wraps each.
Notes: “WOW!! The sauce in this recipe is AMAZING! Two thumbs up for sure. Super easy to prep,” Jesse exclaimed.
Jesse made this dish with lamb shoulder chops. Be very careful with the Thai chiles. They give great flavor to the sauce, but are quite spicy. You can cut them in half and remove the seeds to cut the heat a but, if spice just isn’t your thing.
Jesse spent about seven minutes prepping this meal, twenty minutes cooking it, and made eight portions from this recipe.
Notes: “Everything about this was great. I didn’t think squash would go together with shrimp and carne asada, but I was SO wrong. All the flavors went great together! The tomatillo salsa added great flavor too. I had some of the salsa left over, so I added more on top once it was cooked,” Jesse noted.
Jesse spent twenty-five minutes prepping this recipe, sixty minutes cooking it, and yielded ten portions.
Notes: “So many flavors in every bite of this meal! This was Leah’s favorite,” Jesse said.
For this recipe, you will need to make clarified butter ahead of time. And get ready for an arm workout when whisking up the hollandaise sauce. The sauce can be a but tricky, so be sure to check out the video before attempting the task. Once your arms stop burning, you will be one happy ninja with a little more muscle tone 🙂 Jesse noted that his sauce didn’t come together correctly, so they didn’t add it to the dish, but were more than happy with the results non the less.
Jesse spent twenty minutes prepping this meal, ten minutes cooking it, and added a couple extra eggs to make it into two portions.
Here are the wonderful photos that Jesse shared with us from his recipe choices:
Thank you Jesse, Leah and Kirra for participating in this meal plan and kicking off the new year with a bang! Your photos look spectacular! I am so glad that Ashley and Josh have introduced you to the world of Paleo and that you jumped right in with both feet to prepare these meals. You all did an amazing job!!
Jesse, Kirra and Leah! Your names line up nicely with the alphabet, J, K, L! Next up is Massie and Nick to complete J, K, L, M, N. You follow? Enough on that. Thanks for volunteering your time and efforts to cook up some awesome food for this week’s meal plan. I appreciate you and hope that we can cook together someday. Have a great year and I hope to see you testing a meal plan again soon.
“Keep It Paleo!”