Keto Cooking for Healing and Weight Loss: 80 Delicious Low-Carb, Grain- and Dairy-Free Recipes by Vivica Menegaz (Page Street Publishing Co.) is a beautiful, soft-cover keto cookbook with 80 recipes and images that make you want to eat right off of the pages. If it looks familiar, that’s because it is; it’s a revamp of The Keto Paleo Kitchen (Page Street Publishing Co.). The only real difference is the title, which was changed to clarify the book’s benefits.
But is it more than a pretty, re-launched face? Does it deliver on the promise of offering keto recipes that heal and help you heal and lose weight? Read on for the answers and to learn whether this keto cookbook deserves a spot on your bookshelf!
About the Author
The author of the blog thenourishedcaveman.com, Vivica Menegaz started her career as a photographer, and, after growing up in the restaurant industry, has had a lifelong passion for food and cooking. As a certified technician in whole food nutrition, the Californian has figured out how to infuse all her recipes with flavor and nutrition.
One might suppose that a book focused on healing and weight loss would spend a lot of time getting into the finer points of how and why the type of cooking in question gets the job done. Not this book. It has a brief introduction about the author’s history and how she landed in her current culinary philosophy, a handful of pages covering “Keto and Why to Do It” (the failure of the Standard American Diet), and a handful more pages focused on a therapeutic ketogenic diet (what keto is, how it works, what it does). The reason for this could be that this 2021 release is, as we mentioned, an update of the author’s 2017 book, The Keto Paleo Kitchen, including many of the same recipes and images. In any case, if you already have that book, skip this one. But if you don’t, read on.
So what makes this 175-page book different from other ketogenic cookbooks? We’ll start with drool-inducing, first-class photography. Almost every recipe has a corresponding photo, and each of them are downright mouthwatering with great lighting and styling, so you feel like you’re simply browsing a fantastic cookbook, not a “diet” cookbook. More fundamentally, this book has a focus on whole ingredients and is totally dairy-free. You won’t find a lot of bacon or cream cheese here. Organics are recommended, as the author designed each recipe for optimal macronutrients and micronutrients, ideally void of pesticides. (It’s worth noting that if you don’t have access to organic ingredients, the recipes still work!) These are recipes that don’t make you feel like you’re cheating the system, the way the keto chaffle burger does, if you know what we mean (though you can find BLT meatballs here!). Plenty of good fats, plenty of vegetables, plenty of flavor. It’s a win-win-win!
The nutrient-dense, healing recipes include breakdowns of total calories, total carbs, fat, protein, fiber, net carbs, and prep time, and are divided into the following subsections:
There’s a hearty selection of keto dinner recipes here (23), and they travel the globe in cuisine. Think Butter Poached Scallops with Meyer Lemon Gremolata, Chicken Cabbage Pot Pie, Keto Lamb Koftas, and Thai Green Chicken Curry.
Don’t expect anything revolutionary here. Instead, look forward to some solid options. Think cereal, Benedict, and egg dishes.
Quick and Easy Lunches
Thank goodness for this section, because you know what the difference between lunch and dinner cooking is? Available prep and cooking time! Expect superfast, super simple recipes for the likes of curried egg salad rolls, seared carpaccio salad, chicken shawarma, and more.
Side Dishes, Soups and Snacks
A generous selection of mostly vegetable-forward dishes, it includes delicious (and so simple) Creamy Roasted Asparagus Soup (see recipe link below), Stir-Fried Chinese Long Beans, Crab Cakes, and even a spiced but mix.
Breads and Noodles
There are just a few selections in this section, but if you want Cinnamon Swirl Muffins, Herbed Croutons, Keto Lard Biscuits, or Keto Seed Bagels, you’ll find ‘em here.
Dressings and More
This self-explanatory chapter has some recipes you’ll use regularly, like Creamy Avocado Dressing, Butter Lemon Sauce, and Keto Goddess Dressing.
Not surprisingly for a healing cookbook, sweets are kept to a minimum. Just four recipes, in fact: Brown-Butter Cookies, Chocolate Halvah, Coconut Chocolate Bars, and Healing Hot Chocolate.
Try the following recipes from Keto Cooking for Healing and Weight Loss now:
Creamy Roasted Asparagus Soup
Cashew Crusted Salmon with “Ponzu” Sauce
Seared Skirt Steak with Brazilian Vinaigrette
What You’ll Learn
If you’re not familiar with how to eat “clean keto” or cook keto without tons of red meat, dairy, or both, this book will give you many wonderful examples.
What We Like
What do we like? Oh, the photos! They put most keto recipe books to shame. And the recipes themselves because they are surprisingly easy and also quite delicious without the heaviness of many keto dishes!
Room for Improvement
There’s not a lot we wish for with this book, except, perhaps more desserts.
The Final Word
This reissuing and repositioning of the 2017 cookbook The Keto Paleo Kitchen features dairy-free, clean keto cooking, gorgeous photos, and lots of flavor. If you want to keep keto but feel like you’re eating super healthy and light (meaning lots of keto-friendly veggies and good fats from meat and fish and no heavy dairy products), you’ll be happy with this 80-recipe cookbook.
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