“The Grain-Free Family Table” by Carrie Vitt

Sarah’s Rap: In a recent post, Tales From a Cookbook Junkie, I embarked on a journey to The Grain-Free Family Tabledive into my collection of Paleo cookbooks. Despite a major cookbook addiction, I often find myself making the same meals over and over again. My plan of action was to explore each of the gems which grace my cookbook shelf more in-depth in order to spice up my meal repertoire. The first one I started with was “The Grain-Free Family Table” by Carrie Vitt and it was a good choice. I’ve been eating well for the last two weeks! The recipes were ones that I could feel good about —  healthy and designed for people like me with many food restrictions. However anyone would love this book, not just those with illness.  The recipes are creative, yet simple and hearty.

The author suffered from severe hives and pain due to Hashimoto’s disease, an autoimmune disease of the thyroid. By changing to a grain-free and soy-free diet, free of processed foods, she healed her body and is now in remission from her disease without needing to take thyroid medication. She developed the recipes in this book so that she could eat satisfying meals that nourished her body and didn’t leave her feeling deprived. The book’s introduction is inspiring and full of information for those suffering from illness.

One quote from her I love and can personally attest to is, “Natural healing isn’t a quick fix. It’s a long process, but it’s worth it in the end.” Well, with the recipes in this book, natural healing is a lot easier, and tastier, process.

With recipes for starters, breakfast, sides, entrees, desserts, basics and even kids’ favorites, Carrie covers a broad spectrum and offers grain-free options for anyone to get started with or expand their current repertoire. She does use dairy, but if you cannot tolerate dairy, look to her Paleo/Dairy-Free Adaptations at the end of each recipe for

Chicken Parmesan
This recipe for Chicken Parmesan with Zucchini noodles was made dairy-free by omitting the cheese. 

 substitutions. Many of the baked recipes call for almond flour, so if you cannot eat these, there are other flours you can substitute for the nut flour (e.g. cassava, arrowroot, sweet potato, tigernut and coconut flours), but note that these may not yield the same results as the almond flour. According to a recent blood test for food sensitivities, I actually can’t eat almonds right now, but substituted a combination of pecan, coconut and arrowroot flours with good results.

I made several recipes from this book over the course of the past weeks. For breakfast, I ate Coconut crepes topped with Quick Chia Strawberry Jam alongside Creamed Kale and Eggs. It was a luxurious meal and one to be repeated.  For lunch, Egg Salad in Bacon Cups served with Spinach and Roasted Garlic Dip and a side of Siete Grain Free chips were delicious. The Bacon-Wrapped Meatloaf served with Arugula Salad and Roasted Vegetables with Caramelized Onion Mayonnaise was a deliciously indulgent dinner. Another night we enjoyed the Chicken Parmesan with Zucchini Noodles while my kids had the homemade Chicken Nuggets. And lastly the desserts… the Homemade Waffle Cones were a huge success with the family, the Apricot Pecan Cookies disappeared within 24 hours and the Blackberry Apple Crisp was a hit at a friend’s dinner party. The last recipe I tried was the Thick Homemade Yogurt. It made six servings which I enjoyed daily mixed with fresh berries or the Quick Chia Strawberry Jam.

Strawberry Chia Jam

There are still so many recipes I’d like to try in this book. The pictures are beautiful, the recipes creative and easy and I love that each one comes with a Paleo/Dairy-Free adaptation. If you are looking for gluten-free and Paleo meal ideas, I’d definitely recommend “The Grain-Free Family Table”.


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