This BBQ pizza recipe was one of the first “meatzas” I made when I started AIP. Following a Paleo diet prior to AIP, I would occasionally order gluten-free pizzas on the weekend, but they were never good and the flavor was a mix between cardboard and tomato-flavored straw.
This BBQ Chicken Pizza’s base is actually made from ground chicken thighs! It’s pretty neat how baking protein into a thin patty makes a “crust” that holds up quite well to toppings and hand manipulation.
The BBQ sauce is equals parts sweet and tangy and even without the smokey flavor of peppers, it’ll still feel like you’re eating the real stuff.
Did you know that KC Naturals makes a legit nightshade-free BBQ Sauce!? You can buy it on Amazon now!
BBQ Chicken Pizza
- Cherry-Thyme BBQ Sauce:
- 1 1/4 cups pitted and halved cherries
- 1 tsp finely chopped thyme
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- Salt, to taste
- 3 slices uncured bacon, chopped
- BBQ Chicken Pizza:
- 1 lb pastured, organic chicken thighs
- 1 tablespoon each chopped oregano and parsley
- Smoked sea salt to taste
For the sauce:
Bring the cherries to a low simmer in a small pot over medium-low heat. Once they start to release some of their juices (3 minutes or so), stir in the chopped thyme, lemon zest.
Let reduce for 5 more minutes and now add in your apple cider vinegar, coconut sugar, and salt (to taste). Simmer for an additional 10 minutes periodically using a rubber spatula to break open the cherries. Transfer sauce to blender to cool.
For the pizza:
Remove from oven. Using a paper towel, pat dry the extra fat that has risen to the top of the crust. This will help ensure a crispier crust. Spread Cherry Thyme BBQ sauce on crust (leaving an empty ½ inch border).
Top with crumbled bacon and return to oven for additional 5 minutes.
Let cool a couple minutes, garnish with parsley, and slice into wedges. Serve with a large salad!
Cherry-Thyme BBQ Sauce
Makes enough for 1 pizza | 25 minutes
1 ¼ cups pitted and halved cherries
1 tsp finely chopped thyme
1 tsp lemon zest
1 T ACV
1 T honey
Salt, to taste
3 slices uncured bacon, chopped
- Bring the cherries to a low simmer in a small pot over medium-low heat. Once they start to release some of their juices (3 minutes or so), stir in the chopped thyme, lemon zest.
- Let reduce for 5 more minutes and now add in your apple cider vinegar, coconut sugar, and salt (to taste). Simmer for an additional 10 minutes periodically using a rubber spatula to break open the cherries. Transfer sauce to blender to cool.
- Cook the chopped bacon in the same saucepan until crispy. Set aside bacon pieces and pour leftover bacon fat into the blender with the cherries. Blend until pureed. Set aside sauce while you make the crust.
BBQ Chicken Pizza
Serves 3-4 | 25 minutes
1 lb pastured, organic chicken thighs
1 T chopped oregano
1 T chopped parsley
Smoked sea salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place a pizza pan on top of a baking sheet. If you do not have a pizza pan, line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place chicken thighs and oregano in blender and puree until a paste forms.
- Using your hands, spread the mixture into a round-shaped pizza crust on the pan. Sprinkle lightly with smoked sea salt (or regular sea salt). Bake for 15 minutes on middle rack.
- Remove from oven. Using a paper towel, pat dry the extra fat that has risen to the top of the crust. This will help ensure a crispier crust. Spread Cherry Thyme BBQ sauce on crust (leaving an empty ½ inch border).
- Top with crumbled bacon and return to oven for additional 5 minutes.
- Let cool a couple minutes, garnish with parsley, and slice into wedges. Serve with a large salad!
Note: If you don’t follow AIP, I suggest adding tomato slices, and grassfed/raw cheese!
These are ah-mazing with an emphasis on the “ah”… open your mouth real wide for these babies. I adapted the lovely Jessica Flanigan’s recipe over at AIP Lifestyle. She makes incredible AIP-only recipes and takes consistently beautiful photos, unlike mine. Frankly, when I took this shot, it was rainy and I wanted to eat the dang dessert. Anyways, I decreased the sugar & time from her original recipe. Bonus.
So we went to the Blues Fest this weekend. Always the best people watching. Two highlights: a drunk adult male in a safari hat with a pouty baby face because we didn’t want to be friends with him. Mostly because he was 2 sips of Budweiser away from vomiting on us. The second: My fiance forgot my fork at home (egregious, I know) and I couldn’t eat my beef & sweet potatoes, so he yelled ‘Does anybody have an extra fork!!!!?’ in a crowd of thousands of drunk festival goers. A family nearby donated me their baby’s two-prong tiny plastic fork, and I ate my meal with pride. Then wondered if I was swapping spit with a 3 month old. Anything for beef, right?
Mini Blackberry Tarts (makes 5 mini tarts)
Recipe adapted from Autoimmune Paleo Lifestyle Strawberry-Lemon Tart
Recipe can be easily doubled for a larger gathering
12 oz organic blackberries
1 T honey
1 T lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 c + 1 T sweet potato flour
1 T + 2 tsp tapioca starch
2 T + 2 tsp coconut oil, melted
Whipped coconut cream for serving
1. Bring washed blackberries, lemon juice, and coconut sugar to a boil over medium heat in a small sauce pan. Let simmer, covered, for about 15 minutes until they thicken and become syrupy. Drain over a strainer to remove extra liquid and set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with 5 silicon muffin liners.
3. Combine sweet potato flour, tapioca starch and salt in a mixing bowl.Stir in lemon zest and melted coconut oil and mix well until fully combined and a moist (sorry) flour forms.Press 1 T evenly into the bottom of the silicon muffin liners. Bake on middle rack for 8-9 minutes until lightly golden brown.
4. Top the baked crusts with the strained blackberries. Place in freezer for 25 minutes to cool quickly or you can put in fridge for 1 hour, if you have time.Serve with whipped coconut cream.
Looking for a refined-sugar free mini Paleo treat? Try these Paleo Tarts! Personal-size treats make portion control easy & this lifestyle sustainable!
I fell down the Paleo treat rabbit hole recently. A lot of them are still sugar-free in my household, but this one does have a little bit of sweetener in it. It’s probably my favorite Paleo dessert I’ve ever come up with on the fly. I was jonesing for some sugar pie, a French Canadian dessert that is literally sugar sauce in a pie crust.
Growing up, I spent time in Montreal visiting family every summer. We would always grab some tarte au sucre (essentially, sugar pie) always a meal of BBQ and fries. For some reason, BBQ is kind of a big deal up there. I mean, why wouldn’t it be? It’s friggin’ delicious.
“Sugar Pie” sounds like the least Paleo food in the world, but I’m not one to ignore an incessant craving. The crust is made from sweet potato flour which adds sweetness without adding a lot of sweetener. In fact, there’s only a few tablespoons of raw honey or coconut sugar in this recipe!
You’ll be able to stop at just one because they are nice and rich. The filling is thick, sweet and interestingly also made from sweet potato and coconut milk! Hey, real food treats are what I’m about!
Don’t be intimidated by the long-ish looking recipe by the way. It’s incredibly easy to put together!
Paleo Tartelette au Sucre (“Sugar Pie”)
makes 5 tartelettes | 20 minutes
Ginger Graham Crust
1 T raw honey (for AIP) or coconut sugar
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1/8 tsp fine sea salt
¼ c + 1 T sweet potato flour
1 T + 2 tsp tapioca starch
3 T coconut oil, melted
1. Line a muffin pan with 5 silicon muffin liners. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine coconut sugar (or honey), sweet potato flour, tapioca starch and salt in a mixing bowl. Stir in ginger and melted coconut oil and mix well until fully combined and a moist flour forms.Press about 1 T flour into muffin cups creating a shallow “bowl”. Make sure the bottom and sides are even thickness to ensure proper/even baking.
3. Bake on 2nd lowest rack for 9 minutes until lightly golden brown. Make sure not to let it bake too long or they will crumble.Remove liners from pan (but not the crusts from the liners yet!). Set aside to cool while you prepare the pie filling below.
2 T cold water
2 T raw honey (for AIP) or coconut sugar
1 T coconut oil
¼ cup well-mashed sweet potato (orange variety)
2 T coconut cream (from top of coconut milk can), divided
Whipped coconut cream (optional)
1. In a small saucepan, bring water and coconut sugar/honey to a low boil. Let bubble for 2 minutes while whisking continuously.Now stir in coconut oil or ghee and only 1 T coconut cream and return to a low boil. Tilt pan towards you and continue to whisk until the mixture thickens to a melted caramel thickness (1-2 minutes).
2. Add in the mashed sweet potato and whisk vigorously to emulsify. There should be no clumps.Remove from heat and whisk in remaining 1 T coconut cream until smooth.
- Place 1 T pie filling into cooked crusts and smooth it down with back of a spoon. Leave a little crust perimeter.
- Freeze for 30 minutes in the silicone liners. Remove from freezer and serve with fresh whipped coconut cream, if desired.
I listen to A LOT of “Paleo” /health podcasts (Balanced Bites, Fat Burning Man, Bulletproof Exec are my favorites) when I work out. I stopped listening to music because it seemed like 45 minutes of lost opportunity to learn something new. Recently, Stefani Ruper of the new book “Sexy by Nature” has been guesting on shows. I bought her book on Amazon after hearing her talk about revolutionizing how women see themselves. Most of us spend the day juding ourselves and others in purely superficial ways.
Guilty. It’s something I am working on and I think her book will give me the evidence needed to help me change my thought habits. It’s extremely dehumanizing that we live in a society that tells us our worth comes from the surface. The $13 billion pornography industry is one of our worst enemies, in my opinion. In college, I did a speech in my public speaking class about the consequences of pornography introduction in our male youth. I asked the class “How many of you know someone who is addicted to porn?”, 30 out of the 36 students raised their hands. I then asked “How many of you think Internet pornography should be regulated?” Nobody’s hand went up.
The sexualization of women in the media (including fashion magazines) is out of control. It’s hard not to feed into it when you’re inundated with sexy makeup ads starting at age 6. It’s in our 20’s and 30’s that I think, as women, we finally have the maturity and emotional intelligence to shed ourselves of these suffocating thoughts.
I have found that by eating real whole food, I have been able to let go of a lot of negative body images. I eat A LOT more calorie-wise than I used to, but I don’t EVER stress about food, quantity, or calories. I nourish from the inside and it shows on the outside. It’s really been freeing. It seems that’s what Stefani’s book is going to be about: letting go of self-judgment and realizing that we’re much more than crows feet + saddlebags. Can you imagine how absolutely boring we would be if we were just a shell?
On to food talk: this pasta recipe requires a spiralizer to get those perfect sweet potato noodles. I highly suggest buying one on Amazon; they are super affordable and so versatile. There’s a ton of flavor here. No meat – but if you’re looking to up the protein, some shredded chicken thighs or ground pork woudl go nice.
Pesto Pasta with Caramelized Leeks + Roasted Grapes
2 servings | 40 minutes
1 cup red grapes
1 leek, thinly sliced, white part only
1 1/2 T coconut oil, divided
1 large sweet potato, scrubbed and peeled
Walnut Basil Pesto
1 cup basil leaves, tightly packed
¾ cup walnut halves
¼ cup olive oil
1 tsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove, crushed
¼ tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roast grapes on a parchment-lined baking sheet for 25 minutes, stirring halfway through the baking time. Set aside.
- While grapes are roasting, make the rest of the recipe to save time.
- Heat 1 T coconut oil over medium heat in a skillet. Add sliced leeks to pan and do not disturb for 3 minutes. Stir the leeks, turn heat to low, then cover with a lid for 10 -12 minutes. Stir periodically so they do not burn. Set aside.
- To make pesto: Combine all ingredients in food processor. Set aside.
- Run sweet potato through your spiralizer to make long noodles.
- Heat ½ T coconut oil in skillet over medium heat. Add sweet potato noodles and cook for 5-6 minutes, tossing often with tongs, until they are cooked through but not mushy.
- Remove skillet from stove and gently stir in grapes, leeks, and 3 T pesto.
- Serve with a dollop of pesto and a drizzle of olive oil.