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-   -   If you have cut out commercially processed foods (http://www.gentlechristianmothers.com/community/showthread.php?t=527215)

BestLaidPlans 06-03-2019 10:17 PM

If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
For those of you who have cut out commercially processed foods, do you have trouble with variety?

It seems to me, that if a person wants to eat any kind of whole foods diet, whether it be Paleo or a plant-based diet of any sort, that the recipes out there don't have a lot of variety.

And if they DO have variety, it comes through things like buying a food processor or blender. Or through buying alternative things like almond flour. (I am confused how almond flour or refined coconut oil is ok if one is trying to cut out processed foods...)

So do you struggle with variety? This is one major road block to me.

rcsmom 06-04-2019 04:57 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
I don't really find that we lack variety. And probably the most processed thing we buy is lunch meat and cheese for DH lunch (he won't take leftovers every day). We eat a fairly whole food diet in general and I don't do gluten or dairy. What specifically are you thinking of?

Virginia 06-04-2019 07:39 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
There are entire paleo cookbooks, so I donít think that lack of variety would be an issue if I chose to go they route (we have done a couple months of paleo). There are some really good ones out there! You can get creative or experiment with more exotic ingredients.


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knitlove 06-04-2019 07:41 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
I will agree that it is more work.

And I think the reason why almond meal is generally ok is that it is just that ground up almonds a lot of other things aren't added to it. So it isn't the grinding up that is the issue but all the things that get added to it in the commercial processing.

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BestLaidPlans 06-04-2019 08:11 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
I do have issues others donít have - canít use dairy for myself and another child. And I am looking into a more restricted diet for myself and at least one other child for our own medical reasons.. Stuff like no legumes and no eggs.

So Iím trying to find true whole foods recipes. Just meats and veggies. I wouldnít mind making a pesto or something, but thereís a lot of substitutes out there that still arenít what my family should be eating. Substitute sugars are still a no-no. Etc. And it feels like there will be so few recipes out there.

---------- Post added at 07:11 AM ---------- Previous post was at 07:07 AM ----------

Iím cooking for 9 of us. I donít really want to be a short order cook. My life is too full for that. I am running this house without my husbandís help, and no, heís not going to help if I ask. So thatís why Iím looking for stuff we can all eat.

Virginia 06-04-2019 08:12 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
Oh wow, that is a lot of restrictions. Are your family members open to trying new veggies?


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Katigre 06-04-2019 08:24 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
Spices and cooking international recipes are a great way to keep it flavorful and interesting.

---------- Post added at 10:24 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:22 AM ----------

I used to use this site for ideas: https://meljoulwan.com/

Her recipes are very flavorful and not boring! But if you're doing more standard American recipe rotations then yes it would be hard.

We buy spices from a place like Penzeys or 360 Spices not aft the grocery store. www.penzeys.com

knitlove 06-04-2019 09:10 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Katigre (Post 6182465)
Spices and cooking international recipes are a great way to keep it flavorful and interesting.

---------- Post added at 10:24 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:22 AM ----------

I used to use this site for ideas: https://meljoulwan.com/

Her recipes are very flavorful and not boring! But if you're doing more standard American recipe rotations then yes it would be hard.

We buy spices from a place like Penzeys or 360 Spices not aft the grocery store. www.penzeys.com

Yes international/ ethnic!. Every year I try to find new south east Asian resipes to add to our normal because they are naturally gluten and dairy free ( they do have soy but I have a good substitute for it)

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2sunshines 06-04-2019 09:11 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
Honestly i think that variety in meal planning is pretty much a struggle for most home cooks, regardless of dietary restrictions or choices. At least in my experience, I tend to fall in to a rut and do the same recipes over and over...

We eat primarily a whole foods diet. I have found more variety with options than when we ate processed BUT again, I personally tend to cook the same things over and over... the way i combat that is to purposely add a new recipe to the rotation on a regular basis (every week or two).

Soliloquy 06-04-2019 11:32 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
We avoid processed foods but we have no dietary restrictions like you do. With allergies it gets MUCH harder (we used to have restrictions). But no, I never found that it was boring, just the opposite, actually. The only restriction was my time (which did become a huge factor). Processed and packaged foods taste mostly of salt and oil, IMO. A few flat herbs. Fresh herbs, fresh lemon juice, etc make things taste so wonderful!

If you can find a handful of creative food bloggers that share your dietary restrictions or at least post a lot of allergy-friendly food, that will make a huge difference.

I really like The Roasted Root. All her recipes are gluten free, many are grain free and dairy free, many are vegan or could easily be made vegan. https://www.theroastedroot.net/

Oh, and cost is the other limiting factor. :yes2 :sigh I often have to compromise due to the food budget.+

(To answer your questions about flours and oils, I look at it this way-- if the processing is something I could do at home, assuming I had the equipment, I don't consider it a processed food from a health perspective. I've watched videos of how coconut oil is processed by the better companies and it is something I could do if I lived where coconuts grow, kwim? I used to grind my own flour and still do, once in awhile. Freshly ground flour is more flavorful and nutritious but I do feel fine buying flour without additives.)

---------- Post added at 11:32 AM ---------- Previous post was at 11:25 AM ----------

I will say this-- a good quality food processor is worth every penny, IMO. I've always had one. I use it a LOT.

I use my blender daily but only because I love to have a smoothie or homemade protein shake for breakfast. If it wasn't for that reason, I wouldn't have much use for a blender and probably just have a cheap one in my cupboard.

I have 2 Instant Pots and I use them both, often.

I have a $40 bread machine (Oster Express Bake) and I use that a lot, too. But we can eat wheat. I did use it when we were GF, though, too. But I wouldn't have one if we were grain free.

I just looked and the Oster Express Bake is now $70 but for $90 you can get one with a gluten free setting. However, if you're not super sensitive to gluten, I see bread machines at thrift stores all the time. You'd have to clean it really well and it might not be worth the risk of gluten exposure.

I see food processors, too. Some people buy them but never ditch the processed foods so they go unused and they donate them. I have one SIL who has never used her food processor and she's had it about 15 years!

ECingMama 06-04-2019 11:46 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
I like Danielle Walker's cookbooks.

LovinBeingMommy 06-05-2019 08:46 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
I've found we eat a better variety when we're avoiding a lot of processed stuff. I've never gone 100% unprocessed, but I've cut a lot. I cut more as I learn to make more of the ingredients for myself.

I've found lots of blogs and youtubers who eat specific diets (paleo, vegan, etc.) and share a lot of their recipes and cooking tips, so that helps me keep variety. I follow them mostly to add variety to our existing diet, but they certainly have a wide enough variety to live completely off their recipes and not feel like you're eating the same thing every day. Generally, I just google "[diet type] recipes" and try something that comes up. Or I'll search a specific meal that I'm craving, along with the type of diet I want to follow. So when I had no meat readily available, I googled "vegan Spanish rice" and got a great recipe.

knitlove 06-05-2019 09:29 AM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
For new recipes I really like yumly it is an agrigator that you can filter out things you need to avoid.

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SewingGreenMama 06-07-2019 05:49 PM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
We are about to start the GAPS diet and yes, variety is a concern, one of my sons will litterally go hungry if we eat food that is too similar too often. He already struggles with low blood sugar, fatigue, low energy (sometimes, and super high energy others, adhd :doh ).
Him skipping meals is really hard on everyone as his sensory issues go out of wack and a melt down is far more likely, even once he eats it is still a struggle for the rest of the day. So I'm trying to find a bunch of recipe's that are GAPS compliant. But I'm nervous.

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Soliloquy 06-10-2019 03:58 PM

Re: If you have cut out commercially processed foods
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by knitlove (Post 6182569)
For new recipes I really like yumly it is an agrigator that you can filter out things you need to avoid.

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk

I really like the yummly app. It will generate grocery lists for you, too.


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