Healthier chili recipe

by: Ali B, RD

In my house, chili is a hearty comfort food consumed in the fall and winter months. While chili isn’t necessarily bad for you, some bowls can add up to over 700 calories after toppings are added. While working with clients who are following detox diets we found that chili can be part of a healthy diet!

A few tips for keeping your chili “lean” include:

  • Watching your toppings: high-fat toppings like sour cream and cheese should be limited (or avoided if you can’t resist the temptation). There are plenty of other add-ins that can bring variety to your chili. Check out a few of our favorites here.
  • Choose a lean meat: at Feed Your Vitality we use 97% lean ground beef. Choose the leanest meat you can find at the store, or make sure to remove the fat from your pan before using.
  • Cut carbs: you can GREATLY reduce the carb content in your chili by eliminating the beans. We often have customers tell us that they don’t even miss the beans in our hearty chili.

Here is a basic chili recipe that has 165 calories per serving and can be eaten even on the most strict phases of diet plans.


Chili Con Carne

Yield: 4 servings


  • 1 pound lean ground beef (97/3 if possible)
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 6 cups diced tomatoes with juice (canned tomatoes are fine to use, just make sure there is no sugar added)
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Brown beef with onions and spices over medium-high heat.
    Tip: if you do not have lean meat, brown the meat in a separate pan and drain before adding to onions.
  2. Reduce heat to medium, add tomatoes, and mix thoroughly.
  3. Simmer for 1 hour and adjust seasonings to taste.

Again, for more variety try including some of our favorite add-ins, listed here. Foods that are incorporated into the dish can be added with the tomatoes to simmer. Toppings should be added when the chili is served.


Smoky Butternut Chili – includes butternut squash, green chilies, and smoked paprika. Topped with green onion.


Turkey Chili – made with lean ground turkey instead of beef. Incorporates sweet potato, roasted poblano peppers, roasted red peppers, lime juice, and Mexican seasoning.


Sweet treats you can enjoy on a paleo diet

by: Ali B, RD, LD

If you’re anything like me, your sweet tooth will never be a thing of the past. At least once (or twice, or three times) a week I get a craving for something sweet. My typical go-to is a piece of fruit, but sometimes that just doesn’t do the trick. I’m a pretty lazy cook, so it took me a while to find sweet snacks that are quick and easy to make. Here are 6 of my favorite paleo-friendly sweet treats.


Dessert bullet. I refer to my dessert bullet multiple times a week in conversation and use it nearly as much. If you don’t know what a dessert bullet is, check out our blog post explaining it. A simple banana with a little vanilla extract has been my staple lately and has stopped the urge to drive through Dairy Queen on multiple occasions. I think my favorite part is that it requires no preparation. All you need is a bag of frozen fruit (which I keep on hand anyway) and the machine.untitled


Baked apples. Before we get too far, let me disclose that this is a Feed Your Vitality recipe from the SHAPE/hCG line. The photo below is borrowed from FYV, and an official recipe can be found in Ashley Nanney’s “SHAPE ReClaimed: Simple Recipes for Phase 1”. I make this regularly at home when I’m wishing for something “apple pie-esque”, but I truly can’t make it taste as delicious as the team at FYV.


All you need is an apple, cinnamon, stevia, apple pie spice, and orange juice. FYV also uses cloves and cinnamon sticks, but I don’t typically have those on hand at home.

All you need to do is cut the apple in half and remove the core. In a small bowl mix about 1/4 cup orange juice, cinnamon, apple pie spice, and stevia to taste. Top the apple with the mixture, wrap in foil, and bake at 350 F for 10-15 minutes.

A variation of this includes cutting the apple into small chunks, marinading with the orange juice and seasonings, and topping with Nut Thins (or any other gluten-free/dairy-free cracker) before baking. This adds a great crunch to the dessert. The apple can also be replaced with a grapefruit, peach, or any other fruit you desire.


Muffin in a jar. This is a delicious and EASY dessert to make when you are craving a cake or muffin. Simply get a coffee mug and mix together 1/4 cup flaxseed, 1/2 tsp baking powder, 2 Tbsp stevia (powder), 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 egg, 1 tsp applesauce, and 1/4 cup of your favorite fruit (I chose peaches). Once the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, put the mug in the microwave for 1 minute. Be careful when you take the muffin out of the microwave because it will probably be hot. Let it sit for 1 minute and enjoy!untitled


Substitute sugar for anti-inflammatory sweeteners. 
One way I squash my sweet tooth in the winter is by adding honey to hot tea. (Plus, drinking tea is much better when you have a cute tea infuser like this one).

You can also swap out sugar in your classic recipes for one of these paleo-friendly sweeteners and use almond flour in place of all-purpose flour!


Smoothies or “milkshakes”. This is another time when keeping frozen fruit handy can help with your sweet tooth. Make a smoothie by blending together frozen fruit and almond milk. (Tip: add carrots for a sweet serving of veggies). I’ve also created a faux-milkshake by mixing frozen strawberries, almond milk, and a bit of coconut milk. The coconut milk gives the shake a creamy texture, similar to what ice cream would provide. untitled



20170131_142149Larabars. Yep, the pre-packaged energy bar is both paleo-friendly and satisfying. Their ingredients include dates, almonds, and whatever ingredients needed for each flavor. For example, the apple pie Larabar has dates, almonds, apples, walnuts, raisins, and cinnamon. The banana bread Larabar has almonds, dates, and bananas. Individual Larabars can be expensive (more than $1 each), but I just found a box of 18 at Sam’s for $5.50.


Do you have any other “sweet staples” that are good for those following a paleo diet? Leave suggestions in the comments below!