Happy New Year! Are you committing to a January Whole30 but not sure where to start? Don’t worry—I’ve got you covered, my loyal Nomster! After a month of eating not-so-healthy holiday treats, many of us are looking to hit the dietary reset button to start the New Year off with a bang. January’s the perfect time to remind ourselves of how nourishing food can positively affect our health and wellness, so let’s get started TODAY.
Longtime readers know that I’ve completed several Whole30 protocols in years past—and that I do my best to eat mindfully throughout the year. Many of you have successfully completed a Whole30, too. If that’s you, welcome back!
But for those of you who are new to Paleo, here’s a quick intro: the Whole30 is a tried-and-true 30-day dietary reset that eliminates all the foods that could potentially mess you up big time. (Yes, “mess you up big time” is the scientific term.) Over the past few years, “Paleo” has come to mean a lot of different things, but consistent with my personal definition, the Whole30 is all about making sure you’re eating real food that’s more healthful than harmful.
What exactly is the Whole30? In a nutshell, for 30 days, you commit to cutting out the bad-for-you stuff, and eating whole, nutrient-dense foods instead. It may take you a couple of weeks to adjust, but by Day 30, you’ll feel like a brand new person—and you’ll have a much better understanding of how different foods affect your well-being. After your Whole30, you’ll be able to systematically reintroduce foods back into your diet to see how they make you feel, which’ll help you develop your own nutritional blueprint going forward. A Whole30 will help you figure out which foods will help make you the best version of yourself.
The best part? It’s just 30 days. You’ll be done by the end of the month.
Frankly, if you’re doing the Whole30 in January, the biggest challenge you’ll face this month will be boring food. But I’m here to keep that from happening! In conjunction with the January 2nd start of a worldwide Whole30 challenge, I’m going to exclusively post Whole30-compliant recipes on my blog, Facebook page, and Instagram feed this month. Who knows? By the time February comes around, you might feel so great that you’ll adopt this as your new lifestyle!
Just the Facts, Ma’am
If you’re unsure of how to approach the Whole30 or want to understand the whys behind the protocol, go straight to the source: get yourself a copy of The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom. This is the definitive guide to the Whole30—and it’s packed with recipes, too.
In a rush? Review this post, which is chock-full of links to everything to help you dive right into a Whole30. You can also sign up for my free email newsletter and I’ll send you a weekly roundup of my latest posts, recipes, and alerts about my weekly Wednesday Facebook Live cooking demos. Plus, every new recipe I post in January will be Whole30-friendly, similar to the bulk of the ones in my free Recipe Index.
In other words, keep your eyes peeled!
Channel Your Inner Ina Garten!
The best way to successfully navigate a Whole30 is to get in the kitchen and cook your way to success. Even if you’re a kitchen newbie, my step-by-step Whole30 recipes will ensure a delicious and easy meal in no time at all. As much as cooking may seem like a chore, it really needs to be a non-negotiable habit, like flossing your teeth. Only by cooking your own meals can you insure that you’re fueling your body the right way. Cooking can’t just be a once-in-a-while hobby, my friend. You gotta get in the habit of doing it regularly.
Prefer to get a feel for how a Whole30 looks over a month’s time? You can read up on my previous Whole30 experiences here. Plus, I’ve also compiled a list of TWO MONTHS’ WORTH of daily Whole30-friendly recipes for you. Check ’em out here!
Looking for even more nomtastic Whole30 eats? Go pick up a copy of Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans, my James Beard Award-nominated, New York Times-bestselling cookbook.
It’s stuffed to the gills with Whole30 goodness—in fact, just about all of the recipes in the book are Whole30-compliant. Here’s a downloadable and printable list of the 100+ Whole30 recipes in my book! (Unfortunately, our upcoming cookbook, Ready or Not, won’t be out until this summer, but if you like what you’ve cooked so far, you can pre-order the new book now. Ready or Not will be packed with over 150 recipes, and more than 130 of them are Whole30-friendly!)
And if you have an iPhone or iPad, download my Webby Award-winning cookbook app, which contains over 150 (and counting!) step-by-step recipes, a 30-day meal plan that takes you through breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and an entire category of recipes devoted to Whole30 dishes. Plus, all new recipes on the blog are automatically added to the app for free without you having to install a new update.
Searching for even more Whole30 recipes? Get the brand-spanking new The Whole30 Cookbook which is chock full of simple and 100% compliant recipes, with contributions from your favorite bloggers and cookbook authors. You’ll even find some from me!
And of course, my buddy Melissa Joulwan is the queen of creating effortless, flavor-packed Whole30 recipes. For those of you who already own her first two cookbooks, Well Fed and Well Fed 2, you need to add her latest, Well Fed Weeknights, to the mix.
Plan for Success
When it comes to figuring out what to cook each day, some folks prefer to improvise, but others crave more structure and direction. If that’s you, and you want help with meal planning and shopping, I recommend subscribing to the Real Plans meal planning tool. It is truly the most amazing, interactive, customizable meal planning program I’ve ever encountered. Plus, you can get my recipes and a ton of Whole30-compliant ones in Real Plans as well. Learn more about it here!
Stock Your Kitchen Like A Paleo Boss
Step one is easy: start by tossing the crap from your kitchen. Next, go grocery shopping. If you need advice about what to buy, download these free PDFs and read my post about how to stock your fridge, freezer, and pantry. (But don’t stock any treats during your Whole30!)
What? You need guidance on buying kitchen tools, too? Check out Episode 10 of the Nom Nom Paleo podcast, Essential Cooking Tools. (Psst! If you’ve got room in your budget for one more tool, I’d invest in an Instant Pot. An electric pressure cooker is life-changing and joy-sparking.)
That’s it for now, but stay tuned this month. I’ll do my best to keep you on the right track throughout January with posts that’ll get you through your Whole30 in style. Remember: keep your kitchen adventures fun and your taste buds excited, and you’ll cruise through the Whole30. Make this journey a delicious one, and it’ll become a lifestyle.
Here’s to a tasty, healthy, and successful January Whole30!
Looking for more recipes? Head on over to my Recipe Index! You’ll also find exclusive recipes on my Webby Award-Winning iPhone® and iPad® app, and in my New York Times-bestselling cookbook, Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans (Andrews McMeel 2013).56