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autoimmune 30 easy plan?


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I am willing to chop a vegetable or two but my typical idea of cooking is putting meat and vegetables on a cast iron skillet and sticking that in the oven and leaving it alone till it's done. It doesn't always turn out good, but most of the time I can eat it.


I do not have a food processor or fancy kitchen gadgets. Just a knife, a cutting board, a pan and a stove; and somewhere there's a dusty unused crockpot and a few pyrex things that a former tenant left behind.


I usually go grocery shopping on the weekend to purchase what I need for the following week.


I don't usually follow recipes (because they involve steps and measuring), I usually cook a meat, prep some veggies, store them in the fridge then try to combine them different ways during the week so I don't get bored (or stumble across a combination that actually tastes good).


I could use some help with what things might go together well when I go to the store, and maybe some flavoring (or spice suggestions). Sort of thinking of food "clusters" rather than food "recipes".


For example:


Last week I got (I know the below's not autoimmune, just for the sake of example):


- ground beef

- sardines

- swiss chard

- red peppers

- onion

- mixed salad greens in a large container

- salad dressing

- butter lettuce (I saw a photo of lettuce wraps and it looked good)

- sweet potatoes

- spaghetti sauce




Meal 1

hamburgers and sweet potatoes and greens: basically put meat in pan, poured spaghetti sauce on it, added olive oil (don't know why), found some garlic powder and green stuff (not sure what spice it was), added that, mixed it with the spatula and pushed it into something resembling a patty; cut sweet potatoes in large chunks, stacked the swiss chard and cut it 3 or 4 times, threw garlic powder over it and stuck it in the oven.


Meal 2

lettuce wraps: started chopping red peppers, then got tired and just sliced the rest, figuring I could used them for something else; chopped the onion, and some of the butter lettuce. Mashed sardines in the spaghetti sauce, mixed in chopped onion, chopped butter lettuce, red pepper. Added random spices that I found in the kitchen. Put in oven. I used some of the butter lettuce leaves like naan or bread and ate the mixture.


Meal 3

leftover ground beef on mixed greens, with salad dressing.


Meal 4

leftover sardine "stuff" on mixed greens, with salad dressing and leftover red peppers.



So basically looking for additional ideas. I've looked at a few cookbooks for ideas but they seem to involve work, and measuring stuff. I think these people like to cook, or something. Cooking isn't really my thing.








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On the AI Protocol you'd have to eliminate the red pepper and tomato sauce. Both are nightshades.


What I did for lunches this week was get a plain rotisserie chicken and put it in containers to which I added a baked sweet potato or roasted butternut squash. That was my lunch.

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I followed AIP for a while and one of my most often used meals was browned ground beef (in a cast iron skillet) which I would then remove to a bowl and add more fat if needed and then a can of puréed butternut squash and heat through. I would add coarse Celtic salt and whatever herbs I had and eat this with the meat. I still love this meal. The key is getting some nice browned bits from the pan to transfer to the squash and don't skimp on fat or salt.

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Sounds like what you need are Hot Plates. I reccomend the cookbook Well Fed. Yes, there are recipes, but in the beginning she describes Hot Plates, which are exactly what you want. These are how she cooks 4-5 of her dinners each week. Basically, you par-cook your protein and veggies and keep them all sepperate on one day, enough for the whole week (a cook-up). I don't really like food that's been cooked and sitting in the fridge for several days, I will only eat leftovers 1, MAYBE 2 days after it's been cooked, so I skip this step and just cook my hot plates fresh. All the Hot plates are are combinations of meat, veggies, and seasonings that go well together that resemble something from different cultures. For example, one of my favorites is a greek hot plate with ground lamb or ground beef with onions, garlic, diced zucchini and green beans, seasoned with oregano, marjoram, and red wine vinegar and/or lemon juice. Melissa includes a whole page of various combinations from greek, to moroccan, to indian, to italian, to eastern european. 

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I'm not a great cook, with limited patience and time in the kitchen. However, I've learned from experience that it's worth it to put in a little effort. The slow cooker is my best friend since I can do one concentrated stint in the kitchen once a week and have food to eat all week. I do initially follow a recipe but after a couple of times, the steps become more automatic & natural and I end up saving a lot of time. I also use a Foreman grill which stops me from burning everything to a crisp :)


You can buy frozen chopped veg such as onions, some greens, and peppers. If your grocery store has a salad bar, you can pick up some pre-chopped fresh veg in the exact quantity you need.


There are some ideas for protein/veg combos in ISWF (Appendix A - The Meal Map). They offer suggestions for seasonings so that you can get some acceptable and good tasting meals. Well Fed is another great resource for weekly cookup ideas.


Yes, all these suggestions involve work but it's definitely worth it, especially when you see payback on your investment. The first couple of weeks are the most difficult but once you get over that hump it gets much easier.

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Is fennel bulb allowed on AI? I know the seeds aren't (any seeds even ground spices from seeds are not allowed). I love fennel bulb and think it would taste great sauted with lamb.

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Thanks, I actually grew fennel last year and have some seeds that I collected. They were very good! I actually could chew on one. But I will forgo that until this AI is over. But I am so happy I can use the bulb. I love fennel.

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Fennel is allowed, for sure. My best suggestion is a weekly cook up if you don't mind re-heating prepped food. You named it - food clusters. Cook meat, cook veggies and combine as you like it. 


Check "Create your own breakfast skillet" and "One-dish meals" from AIP authors. 


Now tips from Cap. Obvious.


1. Plan how many servings you need and make several types of protein. Let's say brown gb or make meatballs/meatloaves/burgers, bake chicken thighs, stock up on canned salmon, roast fish fillets or make the meat roast (no patience needed indeed, marinate and bake. Slice it after and voila, portions are ready).

2. I roast tons of veggies. Again, no fuss. I would just cut up all the veggies, coat them in oil and spices and roast. Broccoli, radishes, cauliflower, carrots, brussel sprouts, beets, sweet potatoes, all squashes you can find. I roast severa spaghetti squashes and have them handy for the random skillets. 

3. Make root vegetables mash. Again, just steam and mash with fat of choice. I love celery root, cauliflower, carrot. Butternut squash of course. 

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To give you fellow AI followers some inspiration, one of my goals in doing this was to alleviate joint pain, especially bad tendonitis in my elbow (no, I don't play tennis). I can report after 7 days, the pain is almost gone. It was a sharp pain when I made certain movements and also painful to the touch. I feel like it's 90% better at this point.


I'm not sure what it is exactly. I was already grain/legume free. So it might be the eggs or dairy. Hopefully not the wine or chocolate :lol:

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