10-Minute Side Dish: Peas, Red Onion & Bacon

10 minute side dish, Dijon, Herbs, Lamb, Paleo, Pancetta, Peas, pork, Turkey Bacon, vegetables

I love green peas. They’re bright, delicious little pops of goodness in my mouth. Trying to follow a Paleo diet means maximizing my vegetable dishes because I don’t eat the traditional sides like rice that we’ve become accustomed to consuming. IMG_2779

This peas and bacon recipe will make anyone a pea lover. The cured meat fat combined with the freshness of the peas and red onion is delightful. It works great paired with pork, lamb or chicken, especially when the protein is marinated in my Dynamite Dijon recipe.

This side dish’s surprise ingredient is mint. Its light and refreshing flavor is unexpected and perfect with the richness of the bacon and the sweetness of the red onion and peas. Don’t be afraid to add it! Your family and guests will be truly surprised by how much they love the touch of mint in this dish.

I’m happy to use frozen green peas, and that makes this even easier because I can keep them on hand. The amount of bacon (or you can easily substitute pancetta or even turkey bacon) is minimal – only 2 ounces. That’s only about 2 to 3 slices. Ask your butcher or deli for just a few slices of whatever cured meat you choose, and that way you don’t feel compelled to buy a pound in the traditional pre-packaging.


2 ounces bacon, pancetta or turkey bacon (if using turkey bacon, add 1 tablespoon of ghee, coconut oil or olive oil to the pan when cooking)

1/2 red onion or 1 large shallot, sliced IMG_2763

1 garlic clove, chopped

10 oz. bag or box of frozen peas

2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves, chopped

1/2 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper


Cut bacon or pancetta into small strips or chunks. Cook in large skillet over medium-high heat for 3 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the red onion or shallot and continue to sauté for another 5 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium and add the frozen peas. Stir and add the salt and pepper. Cook for 5-7 minutes until the peas are tender and bright green. Turn off heat, add mint, and stir. Serve hot and enjoy!

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The Perfect Anti-Everything Smoothie

Anti-inflamatory, Cleanse, Paleo, Smoothies

After last week’s fried ravioli for the Final Four games, the holiday weekend, and the NCAA championships last night, it’s time to get back on track. My overindulgence is over! Smoothies are a great way to sneak extra fruit and vegetables into our diets, and we often feel “healthier” after we drink one. However, most of the smoothies sold at places like Tropical Smoothie or Jamba Juice contain more calories and sugar than people realize. And they are usually gigantic! Yet we justify their size because it’s replacing a meal. Umm…

A little over a year ago, I started making smoothies at home so that I could control their content. I’ve become pretty proficient at maximizing the flavor and effectiveness of my smoothie recipes while leaving out the extra calories and carbohydrates. IMG_1305

Today I want to share my favorite anti-everything smoothie. It’s an anti-inflammatory smoothie, an anti-oxidant smoothie, and (most importantly) an anti-aging smoothie. Every ingredient in this drink promotes health and proper digestion. I’m tempted to call this a “cleanse” smoothie but the anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant components truly make this so much more. Below I’ve gone through the ingredients so you can see how  each element affects your body.

Make this in the morning and start your day off right. You’ll feel energized, as well as cleansed and refreshed. This smoothie is also an amazing hangover cure, or so I’ve heard. Drink on, friends!


An excellent source of vitamin C, oranges are great for the skin and immune system. They are also a good source of fiber, as well as B vitamins, folate, vitamin A, calcium and potassium.


Ginger contains very potent anti-inflammatory compounds called gingerols. It is commonly used to treat various stomach problems, while promoting digestion. It has been shown to reduce pain from arthritis and sore muscles, and can also help the respiratory system.


Radishes are a natural cleansing agent for the digestive system, helping to break down and eliminate stagnant food and toxins built up over time. Radishes induce apoptosis – meaning they kill cancer cells. For those of us with more vain concerns, many of the nutrients found in radishes – such as B vitamins, zinc, phosphorus and vitamin C – benefit the skin. The water content helps the skin stay hydrated and the disinfectant properties can clear up skin problems such as cracks, rashes and dryness.


The antioxidant zeaxanthin, found in mangoes, filters out harmful blue light rays and is thought to play a protective role in eye health. It also has plenty of vitamin K, which is key to bone health. Mangos are great for hair because they contain vitamin A and vitamin C, both of which are needed for building and maintaining collagen.


Mint has high antioxidant capacities. It smells great, tastes refreshing, and contains small amounts of potassium, magnesium, calcium, phosphorus, vitamin C and vitamin A.


Honey contains flavonoids, antioxidants which help reduce the risk of some cancers and heart disease. It’s also a natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal, and has been known to help treat seasonal allergies.



1/2 cup orange juice IMG_1292

2 medium radishes, sliced

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and chopped

2 teaspoons honey

3 large mint leaves

1 mandarin orange or 1/2 orange, peeled

1/4 cup frozen mango

1/4 cup ice cubes



Place all ingredients into the blender in the order listed. Blend at a high speed until everything is completely pureed, about 45 seconds. Drink immediately.

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