AIP Week 3: Budget Update & Meal Plan

After a very successful last week, I was a little stumped when it came to planning this week.  I’ll be honest, I found my veggies this week slightly un-inspiring.  Yellow squash isn’t a favorite, and after last week’s cauliflower, I was out of my go-to recipes.  But some Pinterest trolling reminded me of a few different dishes that I wanted to try, and adapt to be AIP.  Now that I’ve picked them, I think this will actually be a very delicious week of dinners!

I successfully navigated eating AIP at a restaurant this weekend!  I’ve also managed to avoid feeling too tempted during thee grazing hour at my office.  I never really noticed how frequently we have snacks coming in and out until I couldn’t eat them.  Obviously, this challenge has been strengthening my self-control, which is actually nice.  It the past, if something was “off-limits”, I’d just find another food to fill the sugar-craving or the dessert-craving or the crunchy-craving or whatever.  While I’m still dealing with sugar-cravings (mostly with too much dried fruit), there aren’t really AIP-alternatives that are easy to find or make.  Most desserts require somewhat complicated recipes and, after making all my other meals, I don’t feel like cooking anymore.  So instead of just impulsively answering the craving, I’m learning to just sit with it.  And guess what?  I survive the craving and usually, its not so important as to be remembered in an hour or two.

I think I’ll learn the most about myself this month, and it won’t necessarily be what foods “work” or “don’t work” for me.  This AIP round has kicked off a little bit of self-reflection that I am trying to hold on to throughout it all.  We’ll see how it goes.

Another saving grace during these AIP weeks has been “gummies” or “fruit snacks” that I’ve made with gelatin powder, a bit of honey, and fruit juice.  I’ve made sure to use fruit juice without added sugar and only one batch per week.  This allows for about a handful a day, which I slip into my lunch box or have as dessert.  It’s more the texture than the sweetness that I’m craving.  This week, I’ll use some of my Hungry Harvest add-on item: Watermelon-Tart-Cherry Juice.

I forgot to snap a photo of our receipts this week, but I do think it was much closer to the $75-$80 range, which is exactly where I want to be, budget-wise!  $20 to the vegetable box, $20 for odds and ends at Giant, and another $35-ish at Trader Joe’s for the bulk of this week’s groceries.

Here’s what we got:

Groceries

Trader Joe’s: Unsweet shredded coconut, mint, carrots, parsnips, limes, “tiny” avocados, frozen coconut, coconut milk, dried beet chips, 2 lbs ground chicken, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, plantain chips, freeze-dried strawberries, broccoli, bananas

Giant: fresh basil, fresh cilantro, 1 lb shaved pork, 2 lbs beef short ribshh box

Hungry Harvest Box: watermelon-cherry juice, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, lettuce, zucchini, yellow squash, apples, kiwis, oranges

 

Here’s what we are eating:

Sunday: Braised Beef Shortribs, Cauliflower-Parsnip Puree, Roasted Brussel Sprouts  Shortribs have been on my list for ages, but were never in the $50 budget last year.  I still want to try Deb’s recipe, but for now, I’ve made my own AIP-compliant broth with balsamic vinegar.  I’ll slip a little horseradish in the cauls-parsnip puree, and the sprouts will put some green on the plate.

Monday: Fiona’s Green Chicken, Sweet Potatoes, Sautéed Yellow Squash  Another recipe that I’ve had my eye on–all those herbs have got to be good!  Otherwise, keeping the veggie sides simple.

Tuesday: Leftovers  I work the late shift, so we’ll clear out the fridge after the weekend.

Wednesday: Larb Gai with Sautéed Broccoli, & Avocado  This ground chicken, pungent with lime and fish sauce, is one of my go-to dishes at Thai restaurants.  I usually add a side of rice to make this traditional appetizer into a full meal, but I’ll  round it out with veg and healthy fats for AIP.

Thursday: Carrot Ginger Soup  Just something simple after my class.  I get snack-y during my three-hour class, so I’m never too hungry once I get home.  This quick and easy soup does the trick, with a punch of ginger to keep things interesting.

Friday: Pho with Zoodles  So good that we are repeating it!  Shaved pork was on sale, so we’ll switch it up a little from last week’s shaved steak.  Pho really makes the best leftovers for lunch the next day and this has been one of our favorite AIP dishes yet.  The trick is to keep the noodles fairly raw (just warm) so that they don’t disintegrate in the broth.

Saturday: Leftovers  Clearing out the fridge again!

Breakfasts will be my usual combo of protein (bacon or sausage), greens, sauerkraut and/or kombucha for probiotics, and sweet potato or avocado.  Lunches are leftovers and a piece of fruit.  Snacks are plantain chips, beet chips, dried strawberries, and gummies.

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