Easy Grilled Chicken Pesto Kebabs

Hey guys, I’m so excited for the three day weekend coming up! So much so that I created these fun new simple Chicken Pesto Kebabs for the grill. I know most of you here in the states will be celebrating by firing up the BBQ and making delicious treats to enjoy with family and friends. I wanted to share something that was easy enough, so that you have more time to enjoy your loved ones!

Memorial day is all about celebrating and honoring those American heroes who lost their lives serving our country. My uncle lost his life in Vietnam, so I always honor him and the legacy he left behind with my family on this special day. My Mom wanted to name me after him and said if I was a boy, my name was supposed to be Kenneth. When she found out I was a girl, she thought Kendra was a perfect fit!

Last year I got to spend some time in D.C. with my Mom and Dad and we got to visit the Vietnam Memorial Wall. It was a humbling experience, to say the least. I was in tears capturing this special moment as my Mom gently rubbed her brother’s name onto a sheet of paper to take as a keepsake.

I know this was kind of a deep post, but I didn’t want it to just be about the food, Memorial day is so much more than that! I think we get caught up in the traditions of a holiday, sometimes forgetting the reasons behind why we celebrate them. Feeling grateful for all those who have served and currently serve our country so we can be safe at home.

Easy Grilled Chicken Pesto Kebabs


  • 1.5 lbs. boneless chicken thighs, trimmed & cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup pesto (recipe here)
  • pint of cherry or grape tomatoes
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • metal or pre-soaked wooden skewers


  1. In a large shallow container add the cubed chicken, 1/2 cup pesto and let marinate for 20-30 mins. or overnight.
  2. Pre-heat your outside grill to medium heat, can also be done inside on an oiled grill pan on medium.
  3. When chicken is ready, thread it onto the skewers along with the tomatoes.
  4. Sprinkle each skewer with salt & pepper to taste.
  5. Cook on the grill 3-4 mins on each side or until the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165–175°F.
  6. Remove from grill and slather on more of the leftover pesto sauce!

Easy Instant Pot Carnitas

Raise your hand if you love carnitas!! Now raise your hand if you love your Instant Pot pressure cooker!!! Well you’ve come to the right pIace because right now I’m going to spill all my secrets on how I get the most delicious crispy carnitas in no time! Say good bye to waiting hours for your carnitas to slowly cook to perfection. This Instant Pot version will blow you away!

I sorta feel guilty though, because I’ve been loving on this recipe for a while now and I’m just now sharing it with you. Please forgive me for keeping it all to myself until today (face palm). Today is the day I will make all your wildest dreams come true! Ha ha, name that movie and I will come and hand deliver these tacos de carnitas to your doorstep. Well maybe not, but I can give you a cyber high five for being awesome!

Something funny happened when I was cooking the carnitas so I could photograph them. I accidentally used the beef roast I had picked up to also make my barbacoa recipe from The Whole30 Cookbook, doh!!! They still tasted really good, but the meat was much darker and I was quite perplexed lol!. So just in case you can’t find any pork, or you don’t eat pork, know that it’s still delicious if you use a beef roast!

The most amazing thing about this recipe is that you literally just throw everything into the pot, seal it up for 45 minuets, crisp under the broiler and BAM…you’ve got yourself the easiest way ever to deliver dinner to all those mouths you feed! Even if it’s just your own 😉 My favorite way to serve these carnitas is to add them to some lettuce cups for an easy whole30 friendly carnitas taco. If you’re not doing a whole30 than I suggest serving them on a grain free Siete tortilla, it’s pure heaven!

Easy Instant Pot Carnitas


  • 3 lbs. pork shoulder roast
  • 1 c. broth
  • 1 large orange, juiced
  • 1 large lime, juiced
  • 1.5 tsp sea salt
  • 1.5 tsp dehydrated onion
  • 1tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 3 bay leaves


  1. Add all ingredients except for the meat into the instant pot and mix well.
  2. Submerge pork shoulder into liquid & spices tossing to combine.
  3. Secure the lid shut and make sure vent is switched up to "sealing".
  4. Press the manual button and cook on high pressure for 45 mins.
  5. Once done you can let the pressure naturally lower or switch the release valve to "venting".
  6. Use 2 forks to shred the meat.
  7. Add shredded meat to a covered baking sheet and spoon on some of the juices left over.
  8. Pop into the oven and broil for 5-6 mins or until crispy.
  9. Once crispy you can add to lettuce cups or to some Siete tortillas and load up with all your favorite taco toppings.

Shaved Asparagus and Prosciutto Salad


Last year I created this really easy and fun Shaved Asparagus and Prosciutto Salad when we were on a trip in the mountains of Northern Georgia. I had almost forgotten how amazing it was until Natalie over at Perry’s Plate reminded me, what are food blogger friends for?!! Thanks girlfriend!

My husband and I did lots of fishing and hiked part of the Appalachian trail during our time there. His uncle has a cabin up there and it was such a treat to relax and visit with family! But so was all the amazing food we were surrounded by and all of the natural beauty in our midst! Nature was just begging me to make fresh spring dishes every day! I kept seeing all these gorgeous raw shaved asparagus dishes at the time and decided to just make it happen.

I can’t wait to go back again and hike more of the trail. It starts in Georgia and goes all the way up to Maine, pretty incredible! I feel most creative when i’m out in nature! It always leaves me feeling inspired to create something new and beautiful! Do you feel the same way?

I knew I was on to a good thing when it got the approval of my husband and his childhood friend, who was there with us as well. I added a little goat cheese for good measure as not all who I was serving it to were eating paleo. If you can tolerate a little goat cheese, definitely add it in as it gives it just that extra dimension of creaminess. You could always sub in cashew cheeze to make it dairy free and it would taste just as lovely! This would be perfect to serve on Easter or a Mother’s day brunch!

This salad is simple yet elegant. It probably doesn’t really need a recipe but some people like to have a guide, so we’ll call it more of the latter lol! You pretty much just shave raw asparagus very thinly over torn pieces of prosciutto, squeeze on a bit of lemon juice, add sliced tomato, salt and pepper and a little goat cheese if you like. Done in just a few short minuets, plus it tastes incredibly fresh & springy. Leave off the goat cheese and it’s Whole30 friendly! Just a tip to help in the shaving process, lay the asparagus on the back of a wooden handle ( I used a wooden spoon) to make it easier! Bon appetite!

Shaved Asparagus and Prosciutto Salad

Serving Size: serves 4


  • 1 bunch of asparagus spears
  • 2 packages of sliced prosciutto
  • 2 large Tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 package of goat cheese/cashew cheeze,crumbled
  • 2 large lemons
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1. Arrange torn pieces of prosciutto onto plates.
  2. Rinse and shave raw asparagus with a vegetable peeler over top of prosciutto and squeeze on lemon juice to your liking.
  3. Add sliced tomato, salt and pepper and goat cheese/cashew cheese crumbles if you like. You could also top with your favorite creamy dressing instead of the cheese crumbles to keep it whole30 friendly!

Pesto Zoodles with Mini Chicken Bacon Meatballs

I was up in the mountains this past weekend with no internet access and loads and loads of snow. While it was magical and peaceful, it had me dreaming of these pesto zoodles and warmer weather. I’m really looking forward to spring and summer. There’s always such an abundance of fresh herbs and all the fruits and veggies we’ve been waiting to see at the market all year long! I especially love when fresh basil can be found everywhere because pesto is one of my favorite sauces to make, and this is one of my favorite dishes to use it in!

If you’ve never tried zoodles before, this recipe is a great one to start with. Zoodles are basically just long strands of zucchini that resemble noodles, but are loaded with tons of good for you vitamins. You can make them quickly by using a spiralizer or a julienne peeler. I have the paderno spiralizer and it has worked great for me the past few years. After I spiralize the zucchini I like to salt mine liberally to help draw out some of the moisture. This can help the zoodles be less mushy when you heat them up, but you can eat them raw if you like them that way. If I use a sauce that is already warm, sometimes I don’t even heat up the noodles. I will just mix them with the sauce.

This is a recipe I created when doing a whole30 recipes takeover on instagram. It has been well loved on there and I’m finally getting it added on here so you can Pin it or bookmark it for later. It just makes things so much simpler to not have to scroll 150 times on Instagram to find it, and saves you from carpel tunnel, ha ha! I love the mini chicken bacon meat balls mixed in, they really give it an extra depth of flavor, along with the toasted pine nuts! It’s also a fun recipe to make for St. Patrick’s day as it’s very green and festive! Let me know if you try it! You can send me an email or shoot me a DM on Instagram, I always love hearing from you guys!

Pesto Zoodles with Mini Chicken Bacon Meatballs


    For Pesto:
  • 2 cups basil leaves, packed
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • Pinch of lemon zest
  • Salt and pepper to taste
    For Meatballs:
  • 1 lb. uncooked boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 cup bell pepper, chopped
  • 7-8 slices of compliant bacon, cooked & crumbled
  • 2 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1. First preheat oven to 400° and line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. Then place your zoodles onto a towel & liberally salt them. This will help release moisture. Set aside for about 15-20 mins while you prepare the other ingredients.
  3. Add all ingredients for the pesto to a food processor (except oil) & blend until it's a smooth thick mixture. Scrape sides of bowl. Return processor to on position & slowly drizzle in your oil. Keep blending until well combined and emulsified. Set aside.
  4. Clean out your food processor & add in chopped bell pepper, chicken thighs, bacon crumbles, Italian seasoning and salt & pepper. Blend until mixed well & resembles a thick oatmeal texture. Take about one rounded teaspoon full & shape into meatballs. Place on foil lined baking pan & cook for 18-20 minutes. You can also broil on high for a few mins. to brown the tops.
  5. While your meatballs are cooking take your zoodles & squeeze out the extra moisture with the towel.
  6. Place some oil in a pan & heat zoodles up until warm, then add your pesto & mix together.
  7. Plate pesto zoodles & top with meatballs & pine nuts. You can also toast your pinenuts at 375° for 5 -10 minutes for an even better flavor.

We Can Do Hard Things-My Infertility Journey

A few days ago, I was reminded of how blessed my family truly is. Sometimes we forget because life just makes us busy and we don’t always take time to reflect on how far we’ve come. This morning as I was reciting affirmations and reading out loud the things I’m grateful for, I realized I needed to share my thoughts and journey on here. On Valentine’s Day my husband and I did what most couples do, we exchanged cards and gifts and we enjoyed a night in together. But what stuck out the most wasn’t the flowers, or the chocolate, or the wonderful meal we had together, it was a short but beautiful note that my husband left in my card. In the note he reminded me how we moved into the house we now live in on Valentine’s Day, nearly eight years ago and that he never would’ve thought that we would be sharing so many amazing memories together.
Valentine's day card
 At that time we had just moved into our home after my husbands traumatic brain surgery and stroke.  We had been living with his mother for about a month after we were released from the hospital and rehabilitation center. It wasn’t our fanciest most romantic Valentine’s Day, we barley had any furniture in our new house. A card table with a few chairs to eat meals at together, a bed and a couch. It wasn’t much, but it was ours and we felt blessed to be on our own again. In a place we could be alone and call home. It was a trying but somehow sweet time in our young marriage. When you’re helping your husband with common daily tasks most people can do on their own It really makes you appreciate good health and independence. We really leaned on each other during this time. It also created for us a special bond early on in our relationship. I will always be grateful for that bond, because it has gotten us through some really tough times.matt brain surgery and stoke- leaving kaiser in wheelchair
 I had just lost my job due to the recession and my husband had to dissolve his business as he was unable to work at all. It was sometimes hard to envision what the future would hold for us as a family, but somehow we clung to our faith. A few years later I was diagnosed with an extremely painful and debilitating autoimmune disorder, endometriosis, and underwent surgery to remove as much as possible. Another wrench was thrown into the mix, and at times we felt alone and confused while other times so loved and blessed. I think it’s just natural to go through these emotions. To say that I was always positive about the future wouldn’t be honest, I had moments of doubts and moments where I felt like God was truly taking care of things. The times I felt the tender mercies of my maker, really enlarged my heart and whispered that something great was at hand.
We can do hard things-my Infertility Journey
It’s been almost 10 years since we started trying to get pregnant. A few years after I was diagnosed with endometriosis, I started my Paleo journey along with natural healing methods. I tried accupuncture and was working closely with my acupuncturist to increase my chances of fertility. After about a year into the process I just decided to take a bit of a break from it all, it was wearing on me and I just needed to not put so much pressure on myself. I was grateful for the time we had to rebuild our lives together and trying to see the gift that it was to not have children at this point in our lives. With the celebration of my 36th birthday last month and a lot of prayer and planning with my sweet husband, we decided to not go the completely natural route this time. We feel that at some point in the next couple of years another surgery for him will probably occur, we may have more time, it’s just never known exactly when that will arise. With that and my age we have enrolled in an infertility program.
my fertility flowers
These are my fertility flowers, I have decided to keep them in my home as a reminder that beautiful things are to come. I will continue to replace them every week or so to keep me focused on the good things life has to offer. When you see a bouquet of flowers in my future posts, you can probably guess I am going to update you on our infertility journey. The ups and the downs, the triumphs and diapointments, because it’s all a part of this life. We take it as it comes, because we can find the good in anything that comes our way. We just have to open our eyes and our hearts.
my fertility flowers-2
 I have started doing multiple tests and one of them showed that a surgery for me to repair some things in order to get pregnant may be necessary, so doing things 100% natural may just be out of the cards for us. I may not have been ok with that a few years ago, but today I am a peace with it. I have put so much time and energy into healing naturally, it really has put me in a much better place to become pregnant, God willing.  We are diving in and are scared and excited all at the same time to see where things go. If needed we have decided that we are open to IVF, it’s just unclear if we need to go that route at this point. And if we never get pregnant, sure it will be hard, but we are willing to accept that and continue our plans for a family, whatever that means. Adoption has never been out of the question for us, we are excited to build our family whatever it takes.
tulips-fertility flowers
I’m trying to be gentle with myself this year, I hope that whatever struggles you are dealing with that you will be gentle with yourself as well. There is so much love and beauty in this world. Please know that I am here for you whatever hard things you may be facing, your stories and perseverance give me hope and propel me forward. Thank you for sharing this journey with me. I will continue to update you along the way. We can do hard things, they help us grow stronger and keep us humble. May you find the blessings of this day and have a grateful heart, it truly is the key to happiness!
All my Love,

Citrus Poached Pears with Cranberry Compote and Maple Cinnamon Coconut Cream

poached pear

There is nothing more beautiful than a poached pear with cranberry compote. It’s heaven on earth I tell ya! Add in a few dollops of lovely maple cinnamon coconut cream and you’ve got yourself a simple yet decadent dessert. When you take a slice of warm poached pear, dip it into the sweet yet tangy cranberry compote with some maple cinnamon coconut cream, you will feel as though you died and went to foodie heaven. At least that’s what I experience every time I dig into one!

poached pear with cranberry compote

I wish I had one of these to eat every day, I kid you not! Why did I create this towards the end of 2016?! It would have made things a little sweeter to have been eating this non stop all year round! The cranberry compote has to be my favorite part though. I tried to recreate something my cute neighbor Pam brings over sometimes during the thanksgiving holiday. A wonderful orange cranberry concoction that I’m just certain is a recipe handed down from her family and kept a secret. Shhh!

poached pear with cranberry compote

It’s just wonderful I tell you, and it was the inspiration for this recipe! Her and her hubby Richard are just the sweetest neighbors we’ve ever had! Whenever we get hurt (like the time I cut my finger really bad with a knife) we head over to their place because he’s a doctor and always fixes us right up and they head over to our place when they’re having computer problems because, well we’re computer nerds 😉 If we ever move I hope they can just come with us, haha!
Poached pears trio in cranberry compote

I used the most delicious cranberries I’ve ever had for this recipe. They’re from Cape Cod Select a company whose cranberry bogs are located right in the heart of “cranberry country”. I love supporting farmers who are concerned about the environment and who use sustainable farming practices. They are definitely doing that and growing cranberries that are non-gmo certified.

I loved watching this video about how cranberries are produced, I always wondered why they were floating in water, which is known as a wet-harvest. Did you know there is a dry-harvest as well where they use helicopters to remove the berries after they’re picked? You have to watch it, it’s too cool! I think I may want to be a cranberry farmer now!!

Check out Cape Cod Select on InstagramFacebookPinterest and Twitter for more yummy cranberry recipes. You can also find Cape Cod Select Premium Frozen Cranberries at select stores nationwide or just order them online. I think I may just order their beautiful wooden box of fresh cranberries for myself and for gifts next year!

cape cod select cranberries bag

I hope you enjoy this recipe, it’s a great dessert to ring in the new year. I’m not sure if it’s true, but i’ve heard that some Native Americans used the cranberry as a symbol of peace. I will be eating this on New Year’s eve and praying for peace for my family and yours in the coming year! Happy Happy New Year my Friends!

Citrus Poached Pears with Cranberry Compote and Maple Cinnamon Cream

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes

Serving Size: 4


    For the Cranberry Compote:
  • 4 cups Cape Cod Select Premium Frozen Cranberries (1-16 0z. bag)
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • Juice of 1/2 a large lemon
  • 1 tbsp. orange zest
  • 1/8 tsp. fresh grated ginger
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
    For the Maple Cinnamon Cream:
  • Coconut cream from the top of 1 can of coconut milk, put can in fridge overnight (a really creamy one like Golden Star)
  • Maple syrup to taste
  • Cinnamon to taste
    For the Poached Pears:
  • 4 pears, peeled (I used organic D'anjou)
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 2-3 cinnamon sticks, broken
  • 5-6 large orange peel pieces
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh ginger
  • 4-5 Pure Indian Foods cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla powder (can sub 1 vanilla bean, cut lengthwise and seeds scraped out)


    For the Cranberry Compote:
  1. Add all ingredients to a medium pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.
  2. Once it begins to boil, turn heat to low and let simmer. (make the maple cinnamon cream while you wait) We want the cranberries to burst and cook them down with the liquid until it thickens, about 10-15 mins.
  3. Remove from pot and add to a mason jar, add the lid and set aside to keep warm.
    For the Maple Cinnamon Cream:
  1. In a bowl combine the coconut cream (scoop out only the solid top portion of cream from the can, not the liquid at the bottom) some maple syrup and ground cinnamon and whip together for a few minuets.
  2. Continue adding cinnamon & maple syrup until desired taste is achieved. Keep whipping ingredients together until well combined & resembles a whipped cream.
  3. Cover and put in fridge for later.
    For the Poached Pears:
  1. Wash and peel pears with a vegetable peeler.
  2. Add everything into a large pot (except pears) and bring mixture to a boil.
  3. Turn to a simmer and add your peeled pears to the pot.
  4. I placed them on their side and frequently turned them to make sure they cooked evenly. After about 25-30 mins. remove pears and transfer to a dish. Cover with foil to keep warm and set aside.
  5. Strain out cinnamon sticks, ginger, cloves & peels from leftover mixture. Continue cooking down until it resembles a thickened sauce and set aside.
    To assemble:
  1. Add one pear, whole or sliced in half, to a bowl.
  2. Top with thickened sauce.
  3. Add 2-3 tablespoons of cranberry compote and a few dollops of your maple cinnamon cream and serve immediately!


* Cranberry compote can be made up to 1 week in advance and heated just before serving.



*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, meaning that if you purchase something from one of my links, I will receive a small percentage, at no additional cost to you. I only recommend products that I truly believe in, that I use myself or find to be very valuable. Thanks for helping me to keep Paleo Paparazzi up and running!

2016 Healthy Living Holiday Gift Guide

Holy wow!! With less than 10 days til Christmas, I’m sure you’re scurrying around just like me trying to wrap things up! I put together a round-up of last minute holiday gifts you can still order to make it in time for that special day! I’m calling this my 2016 Healthy Living Holiday Gift Guide, but maybe I should have named it the Lazy Holiday Gift Guide as all of it can be ordered online, ha ha!

About 98% of these can be ordered on Amazon, in your pajamas, sipping on a cup of hot cocoa with my Gingerbread Marshmallows floating on top. Just saying, wink, and if you’re a Prime member you also get free 2 day shipping which means you have more time to watch episodes of Fuller House and Gilmore Girls on Netflix. I just love online shopping!

I split the list into 3 of my favorite categories, food, beauty and fitness. I added lots of fun things that will make wonderful gifts, even if it’s for yourself, shhh!!! Wishing you and your family the best holiday ever this year with hopes for heaps of good food, love and cheer!

2016 Healthy living holiday gift guide the foodie



Instant Pot | Cast Iron Skillet | Spiralizer | Food Processor | Dutch Oven | Kitchen Aide Mixer | Microplane | Santoku 5″ Knife | Primal Palate Spices | Immersion Stick Blender | Whole30 Cookbook | Kasandrinos Olive Oil | Vitamix | Mortar & Pestle | Juicer | Salt Keeper | French Press


Instant Pot: This pressure cooker is all kinds of amazing. It’s like a crock pot on steroids. Our grandparents used them back in the day and they’ve recently come back into popularity. You can cook frozen chicken in 15 minutes, make bone broths in only a few hours and make any tough piece of meat tender. It’s a fabulous gift for a foodie!

Whole30 Cookbook: This made it on the list not only because I have 3 recipes featured in here (check out pages 50, 56 & 120), but because there are great tips to simplify, plan, and prepare meals in this book that will save you time and money. A great book for any foodie looking for satisfying and nourishing real food recipes! It’s also on Sale for $22 right now!

Kasandrinos Olive Oil: The most wonderful olive oil you’ll ever taste, it’s so fresh. Unadulterated and straight from Greece, it’s one my absolute favorite oils to make homemade salad dressings with. They even make a balsamic fig vinegar that is to die for! They have mini bottles of olive oil which I carry in my purse to put on my salads at restaurants!

Primal Palate Spices: These organic spices are so fresh and wonderful to cook with, they have an adobo blend that is amazing and the pumpkin pie and apple pie spices are delicious! What I also love is that their spices are packed in a facility that employs those with disabilities.

Immersion Hand Blender: If you haven’t made my Easy immersion blender mayo ,you must get this tool and make it now! It makes the best mayo and sauces hands down! Plus it’s under $30, what’s not to love about that?

2016 Healthy living holiday gift guide the beauty


Beautycounter Lipgloss Set | Ray Ban Sunglasses | Beautycounter Make-up Brush Set | Daniel Wellington Watch | Lace-up Sweater | Beautycounter Winter Dream Palette | Beautycounter Sea Salt Spray | Natural Facial Brush | Zoya Nail Polish | | Wool Hat | Leather Handbag | Essential Oil diffuser | Wool Throw | Beautycounter Shimmer & Shine Body Gift Set | Herbivore Face Mask | Hope Bar Necklace | Hair Straightener | Beautycounter Complexion Essentials Kit


Beautycounter Holiday Palette: I use this palette every day when getting ready! It has wonderful eyeshadows, blushes, a bronzer and a highlighter. It’s an all in one compact making it easy to just throw in your bag when you’re on the go. One of the things I love about this brand is that they never choose approximately 1,500 questionable or harmful chemicals when formulating their products. Safe skincare is just so important to me and this is one of my favorite products to use and gift to loved ones!

Natural Facial Brush: I use this for dry brushing as well as wet along with my beloved Beautycounter charcoal cleansing bar to gently detox my skin. It’s soft enough to use on my face and it’s made from all natural ingredients! Can’t beat $10 either!

Beautycounter Complexion Essentials Holiday Gift Kit: These skincare products have literally changed my skin for the better, I get less breakouts and the texture of my skin is so much better! This kit contains a Nourishing Cream Exfoliator, a Nourishing Day Cream, a Hydrating Face Oil, Nourishing Rosewater Mist and a Peppermint Lip Conditioner in perfect sized bottles for travel! I love knowing that i’m not putting anything toxic onto my skin, it’s such an amazing gift to give someone you love!

Make-up brush set: There’s nothing better than a set of well made brushes! These are easy to gift anyone who loves make-up! They’re weighted at the bristles making them ergonomic and my make-up goes on so much better now that I own them!!

Sea Salt Spray: Who knew that this natural salt spray could be so awesome for texturizing hair? I stopped using toxic hair products a while back and as someone with stick straight hair, this has just upped my hair game! Everyone I know who owns this is totally obsessed!

2016 Healthy living holiday gift guide the athlete


Yoga Mat | Wireless Headphones | Fit Bit | RXBars | Gym Bag | Detox Body Brush | iPhone 6 Battery Case | Glass Water Bottle | Acupressure Mat | Long Sleeve Workout Top | Sports Top | Muscle Foam Roller | Phone Charger Bracelet | Kettle bell


Fitbit: I just got one of these a few months ago and became obsessed with it! It tracks not only my steps but  my sleep as well, which I was really curious about. Since getting it I’ve been challenging myself to move more during the day, making sure I try to get in at least 10,000 steps! It’s also been encouraging me to get better sleep. This would be a great gift for someone active on your list this year!

Acupressure Mat: As someone with chronic pain this has been such an amazing tool to have! It comes with a massaging mat & neck pillow and it’s wonderful at relieving back pain naturally. It works much in the same way as acupressure and acupuncture work, minus the needles and cost. A great gift for an active person on your list!

Canvas Gym Bag: Ok, so can we talk about how cute this bag is? A great gift to make anyone look stylish at the gym! I don’t own this one yet, but I hope my husband is reading this so I can find it under the tree this year…wink, wink!

Rxbars: Not only do I love these protein bars because they are delicious with clean ingredients, but the people who make them are pretty amazing too! The Maple Sea salt and Blueberry are super yummy! The Combo box would make a great gift under the tree or used as stocking stuffers!

I hope you enjoyed this healthy holiday gift guide! And if you made it to the end of this post, I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate you! I am grateful to have such a supportive group of people reading the blog, following me over on Instagram and just being the amazing people that you are! This just wouldn’t be what it is without you! Thank you for everything, I hope your Christmas, Hanukah or whatever you celebrate is Merry & Bright!


*Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, meaning that if you purchase something from one of my links, I will receive a small percentage, at no additional cost to you. I only recommend products that I truly believe in, that I use myself or find to be very valuable. Thanks for helping me to keep Paleo Paparazzi up and running!

Paleo Delicata “Cornbread” Biscuits

Can you believe that thanksgiving is just around the corner?! It seems as though it just snuck up behind me this year, tapped me on the shoulder and stuck it’s tongue out at me…how rude! Ha Ha! I feel as though I haven’t put as much time and effort into the things I wanted to this time around. Are you feeling the same way? Why do the holidays seem to get here faster and faster each year? One of the perks of getting older I guess 😉

paleo delicata cornbread biscuit honey

One thing that is making me feel a little better is that I am finally posting my Paleo Delicata “Cornbread” Biscuit recipe for you! Hallelujah!! It’s perfect for thanksgiving and is wonderful topped with some melted ghee & honey and even drowned in gravy! I just realized I’ve been loving on these babies for 2 years now and have never shared the love with you on here! For some reason I thought I had already blogged about them, another perk to getting older, memory loss lol!

delicata alone

I created them using my favorite squash of all time, Delicata, and some incredible Pure Indian Foods Ghee. I love that their ghee is organic and grass-fed and how delicious it makes my paleo baked goods taste! I used the cultured ghee for this recipe, but you could use regular ghee if you’d like. I won’t judge you 😉 Have you ever used  either of these in baked goods? They really make the best combination ever. The delicata squash has a wonderful sweet corn like flavor, that’s why it’s such a great substitute for corn. It gives a perfect flavor for paleo “cornbread”.

paleo delicata cornbread biscuits

I love using ghee in my recipes as well because it gives you that great butter flavor minus the lactose and tummy ache. And the cultured ghee is even easier on your tummy, you can read more about ghee and it’s benefits HERE. So on to this wonderful recipe, the biscuits are a little crispy on the outside but soft and moist on the inside. It’s perfect to have alongside your thanksgiving meal this year, they really are such a treat! They also not only go good with turkey, but my Paleo Chili. I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving if you celebrate it, and if not, you will still love these biscuits!

Paleo Delicata “Cornbread” Biscuits

Makes 12 biscuits. Dough can be made the day before and stored in the fridge.


  • 2.5 cups almond flour
  • 3 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 large delicata squash (roughly 1 cup cooked, can sub cauliflower)
  • 1/4 cup melted Pure Indian Foods Ghee
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash delicata squash, cut lengthwise and de-seed.
  3. Line a pan, liberally coat squash with oil and place flesh side down on pan.
  4. Cook in oven for 20-25 mins, or until tender and turn down oven temp to 350 degrees.
  5. Remove squash from oven and set aside until cool enough to scoop out flesh.
  6. Scoop cooled flesh into a food processor (it's ok if some of the skin makes it into the bowl, it's edible we just don't want all of it in there).
  7. Puree squash in processor & add in all wet ingredients, mix until well combined.
  8. Add in all the dry ingredients and mix in food processor until well combined, scoop down sides of bowl 1-2 times to make sure all ingredients get incorporated.
  9. Place food processor bowl in fridge for 30-45 mins. or overnight if making ahead.
  10. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  11. Scoop 2 large tablespoons into hands and roll into a ball.
  12. Place a few inches apart on the lined baking sheet and flatten out a little bit so they resemble biscuits.
  13. Bake for 25-30 mins. or until browned on top.
  14. Slather some ghee on warmed biscuits & drizzle tops with a little honey if desired.


Can use coconut oil to make dairy-free. Can also sub in cooked cauliflower when delicata is not in season.


paleo delicata cornbread biscuts ghee

*This is a sponsored post, thank you for supporting the brands that make Paleo Paparazzi possible! As always, all thoughts are 100% my own.

Paleo Meringue Ghost Tarts

halooween ghost meringue

Happy happy halloween my friends! Halloween happens to be one of my favorite holidays. Not because I like blood, gore and all things spooky. There’s just something nostalgic about it that reminds me of childhood and fun memories with my family and friends. I love the crisp fall air, parties, treats and dressing up. I love using my creative side and pretending to be someone else for an evening. Do you celebrate halloween? If so, what’s your favorite part about it?

I saw something similar to this on the internet, probably Pinterest, and I couldn’t wait to create a paleo version. Although my meringue came out shiny and smooth, I waited to long to pipe it onto my tarts so it kind of melted, face palm! The key is to pipe it on right after and serve immediately. Don’t take a million pictures and then serve them, ha ha! They still taste good, but they look so much prettier if you serve them right away! I hope you enjoy the recipe!

Paleo Meringue Ghost Tarts


  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 2 teaspoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • Salt to taste
    Meringue for ghosts:
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1.5 cups maple sugar
  • dash of almond extract
  • dash of lemon juice


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add crust ingredients to a food processor and mix until combined
  3. Press into small non stick tart pans until evenly distributed on bottom and up sides
  4. Place tart pans on a baking sheet and cook for 10 mins in oven
  5. While those are cooking make your chocolate filling and set aside.
  6. Pull crusts from oven and let cool for a few minuets
  7. Spoon chocolate filling into crusts and smooth the tops
  8. Fill a pan with 2-3 inches of water & bring to a boil
  9. Turn to low and place a heat proof bowl on top
  10. Add egg whites & maple sugar & whisk continually until sugar is dissolved, check to make sure not gritty
  11. Once sugar is all dissolved add mixture & lemon juice to a kitchen aid mixer with whisk attachment.
  12. Beat on high until stiff peak form and it is glossy add in almond extract and beat to combine.
  13. Add meringue to a ziplock bag with end snipped off
  14. Pipe onto cooled tarts to form ghosts.
  15. Using a small brush, add eyes and nose with a bit of coconut oil & cacao powder.
  16. Serve immediately.



shrimp and cauli mash

My Garlic Lime Shrimp with Cauliflower Purée may look familiar to you if you were following along during my takeover of the Whole30 recipes Instagram and Facebook pages. I created this recipe for my takeover and SO many of you loved it that I decided to get it up on the blog. Now you can pin the recipe for later (click save in upper left side of pic) or print out the recipe card below, yay!

This has become a favorite dish around our house, I think you can see why! Hello slow drizzle of ghee, wink wink!  Sometimes you just want a bowl of comforting deliciousness and this meal fits the bill! I can’t wait for another blustery Fall day in California. We had three straight days of rain last week and I was just getting into the groove of Fall. Pulling out my boots and scarves and getting all crazy with pumpkin spice errythang!  Then bam, summer was here again. I felt like Bill Murray, and it was groundhog’s day all over again ha ha!

Lime shrimp with cauliflower mash with ghee whole30

Often times cauliflower purée/mash can be so boring and bland, but this recipe combines so many goodies into one dish it will literally take your breath away, promise! The cauliflower purée mixed with the citrus marinated shrimp is just heavenly! I love eating cauliflower this way because it’s so silky & creamy! You won’t want to share with anyone, not even your BFF! Also, the longer you marinate the shrimp the better the flavor. If you have the time for it, I highly recommend it!



    For Shrimp:
  • 1 lb. fresh shrimp, deveined
  • 1 large lime, juiced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • Salt & pepper to taste
    For Cauliflower Purée:
  • 1 lb. cauliflower, steamed
  • 1/2 cup homemade or compliant beef/chicken broth (I used bone broth)
  • 2 tbsp coconut milk
  • 1.5 tbsp ghee
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt & pepper to taste


  1. Mix shrimp, lime juice, olive oil, minced garlic & seasonings together in ziplock bag. Let marinate about 1-3 hours.
  2. Break cauliflower into smaller pieces & steam until tender Aprox 10-15 mins.
  3. Transfer to blender/food processor & add broth, coconut milk, ghee & garlic powder. Blend until smooth. Season with salt & pepper to taste.
  4. Remove shrimp from bag & add to skewers.
  5. I cooked on a ghee coated grill pan (med-high heat) for a few mins. on each side until shrimp were pink & slightly opaque w/ red tails. Don't overcook, you want shrimp in a C shape not an O shape. An easy way to remember this: C shape for cooked & O shape for overcooked.
  6. Season w/ salt & pepper to taste, squeeze more lime on top of shrimp if desired & serve over cauliflower purée drizzled with some melted ghee.

lime shrimp skewers with cauliflower puree and ghee