HAVE YOURSELF A PALEO PICNIC

Who doesn’t love a picnic in the summer? Grab your basket and head to the park! Wait, what do you put in the basket? A sandwich? What if you are trying to eat healthy? I have you covered! You can still go out and have fun, but without the guilt. Get your basket ready!

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Here are a few meal options you can make and go:

Cucumber Melon and Avocado Salad (protein is optional)

Ingredients:

1 honeydew melon

1 cucumber

 1 large ripe avocado

1/4 cup mint leaves

1 lemon

Optional: a few cracks of black pepper

Directions:

1. Prepare the produce: Remove the rind and from the melon and chop into cubes. Peel the cucumber, and cut into cubes. Slice open the avocado, and cube that as well.

2. Juice the lemon into a medium sized salad bowl. Finely chop the mint leaves and add that to the bowl. Toss in the melon and cucumber. (I leave out the avocado at this time, and add it in last in order to preserve it’s shape.)

3. Finally, gently toss in the avocado.

4. Sprinkle top of salad with a touch of freshly ground black pepper for an extra kick. Serve.

Chopped Salad with Chipotle Dressing

Ingredients:

1 roasted chicken

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup freshly minced basil

1 Small shallot (peeled and minced)

2 teaspoons chipotle chilies (from a can of chipotle chilies with adobo, minced with sauce)

salt and pepper to taste

 1 cucumber (cut in half lengthwise and sliced 1/4 inch)

12 cherry tomatoes (diced)

1 red bell pepper (diced)

1 Large romaine lettuce heart (chopped)

1 Large avocado (diced)

Directions:

1. Pull the chicken meat from the bones, discarding the skin. Cut the meat into bite-sized pieces and transfer to a large salad bowl. In a small bowl, combine the mustard and lemon juice and  whisk to blend. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. Mix in the basil, shallot and chipotle with its sauce. Season the dressing to taste with salt and pepper. Mix 1/4 cup of the dressing into to chicken and let it marinate while preparing the remaining ingredients.

2. Mix the cucumbers, tomatoes, and bell pepper into the chicken. Mix in the lettuce. Add enough dressing to lightly coat the ingredients, Taste and adjust the seasoning. Gently mix in the avocado and serve.

Creamy Artichoke Salad with Cauliflower

Ingredients:

3 cups artichoke hearts (roughly chopped and divided)

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 1/2 tsps maple syrup

1 tbsp dijon mustard

1 tsp sea salt

1 head cauliflower (chopped into florets)

1 avocado (cubed)

1/4 cup red onion (finely chopped)

Directions:

1. In a food processor or blender, blend half the artichoke hearts, oil, vinegar, maple syrup, dijon and salt until smooth. Transfer the dressing to a salad bowl and set aside.

2. Pulse the cauliflower florets in the same food processor or blender in small batches until the mixture becomes a rice-like consistency.

3. Add the cauliflower rice, remaining artichoke hearts, avocado, corn and red onion to the salad bowl and toss with the dressing until well coated. Enjoy!

Now that we have some main dishes...we need some sides! 

Red Cabbage Coleslaw

Ingredients:

6 cups (about ½ head) shredded red cabbage

2 carrots (shredded)

6 tablespoons lemon juice

¼ cup red wine vinegar

½ cup olive oil

2 teaspoons dried basil

1 clove garlic (minced)

1 stalk celery (minced)

1 cup watermelon (diced)

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Shred the cabbage and carrots and set aside.

2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the lemon, oil, and vinegar. Stir in the basil, garlic and celery. Place the shredded cabbage and carrots into the dressing and toss to combine.

3. Top with diced watermelon and salt and pepper. Toss gently.

4. For best results, let coleslaw chill a few hours before serving.

Potato Salad

Ingredients:

8 potatoes

4 large eggs

1 1/3 cup homemade mayonnaise

1 tablespoon vinegar

1 teaspoon pepper

2 teaspoons salt

1 tablespoon mustard

1 cup sliced and quartered cucumbers

Optional: chopped onions, celery or carrots

Directions:

1. Wash, peel and cut potatoes into bite-size pieces. In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until the potatoes are tender. Drain the potatoes and put them in a big bowl.

2. Put the eggs in another saucepan and add water to cover them. Bring the water to a boil, and then let the water and eggs boil gently for 5 minutes. Drain the eggs and cover them with ice cold water. Allow the eggs to sit in the cold water while you mix up the dressing.

3. For the dressing, combine the salt, mustard, mayonnaise, vinegar and pepper. Mix until completely combined. Set aside.

4. Once the eggs are cool enough to touch, drain the water. Peel the eggs and dice them, then add them to the potatoes. Pour the dressing over top the eggs and potatoes and mix until the potatoes are covered.

5. After the salad is completely cooled, add the diced cucumber. If you add this while the potatoes are still warm, it will soften the cucumber. Add in the onions, celery and carrots, if desired.

6. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

If you try any of the recipes or take it to your picnic make sure you comment and let us know how you liked it! Happy picnicking! 

Alesha Lazan