Today’s STM submission comes from Lydia Ash, of Lawrence, KS. Lydia is almost through her first Whole30, and shared a bit of her experience with us via email. Lydia writes:
“I’m a life-long sweet addict – carb cravings were part of my daily life. The sugar addiction, coupled with a general dislike of exercise, resulted in a battle with obesity since childhood.
I began my first Whole30 on August 1st, after eating “primal” since April. That made the transition to Whole30 a lot easier… but it didn’t make the changes any less noticeable. Improvements that amazed me: I don’t crave pastries anymore. I think those things would still taste good–but the constant obsession over eating them is gone. I no longer swell up like a balloon after every meal. I have energy to exercise in the evenings after work now–a feat that was unthinkable six months ago. I have huge and fast improvement in muscle definition. For a forty-year-old gal, these gains are pretty amazing.
Many thanks to Whole9 for promoting the Whole30 program. I appreciate your advice, your enthusiasm, and your recipes! The least I could do is offer up one of mine.”
Lydia’s recipe submission is perfect for single-eaters, families on the go and those of us looking for an easy, no-fuss meal. Crock pot cooking is fast and convenient – you do the prep, and the cooker does all the hard work for you. It’s healthy – when fresh ingredients are cooked at a low temperature, you retail the natural juices, vitamins and minerals from your meat and vegetables. And the cooker lets you make a big meal, perfect for freezing for later (or leftover lunches the following day). Mix and match ingredients to suit your fancy – what could be easier?
Steal This Meal: Crockpot Carnitas
- 5lbs of country-style spare pork ribs (or however many will fit in your crock pot)
- 2 large onions, diced
- 2 cups of diced tomatoes
- 2 cups of diced peppers
- 2 heaping tsp dried oregano
- 1 heaping tsp granulated garlic powder
- 1 heaping tbsp chili powder
- 2heaping tsp cumin
Mix all dry spices in a small bowl. I use a heavy hand with the spices – season to taste. Mix the diced tomatoes and peppers in a separate bowl.
Put down one layer of the ribs in the bottom of the crock. Sprinkle a spoonful of the spice mixture over the meat and spread around some of the tomato/pepper mixture. Top with onions. Make a second layer of ribs and continue until you are out of ingredients. I like to finish with ribs on top, not onions, so the layers are slightly uneven.
Turn crockpot to low and cook for at least eight hours.
Using a pasta-serving spoon, shred your pork ribs. This is the best use for a pasta-serving spoon ever. It allows you to pull apart the meat and remove the bones as well as any egregiously large pieces of fatty gristle.
Use this to make a hot salad, or serve alongside some cauliflower rice and cucumber slices. I especially like it as a salad because the cooking liquid can serve as dressing–no extra condiments necessary. My favorite is a hot salad topped with some avocado slices. It’s what’s for dinner tonight! This freezes really well, too. Perfect for single-eaters or small families.
Got a delicious, simple, Whole30-approved list of ingredients for our next Friday recipe feature? Send your Steal This Meal entry (along with photos and YOUR Whole30-inspired story!) to email@example.com.
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Melissa "Melicious" Joulwan says
I’ve known Lydia for… oh, jeez… 10 years? She’s a smokin’ hot belly dancer and this lady has excellent taste. If she says this recipe is good, you can trust it will be delicious. Can’t wait to try it!
Thanks for sharing, Lydia (and M-Boss & Dallas).
So, I tried this recipe last night with some grassfed beef short ribs I had in the freezer. A-MAZING! Entire family loved it–and it took like 10 min total. Thanks;)
I love crockpot meals! I usually throw a pork tenderloin in with onion, peppers, garlic, and a bit of cooking fat (coconut oil or butter) with salt, pepper, and maybe some rosemary or other dried herb on hand. Let it go for like 6-7 hours on low and it cooks in its own juices and comes out tender and delicious! This looks mighty delicious though and is going to be something I serve up soon! :)
This looks awesome!! I think I will definitely try it with beef spare ribs instead and see how I go.. Just a quick question. With fats, I’m a bit confused with what sort of fat I should eat on meat? With bacon should I be eating the fat that comes on that or should I take it off?
Also WHEN are you guys coming to Australia to talk? :-) I wish I could listen to you speak!
Max J. says
So, for those of us completely clueless in the world of shopping and cooking, are pork spare ribs readily available at supermarkets?
Dallas @ Whole9 says
Add whatever sort of fat you’d like to meat – avocado, olive oil (just don’t fry/cook with it), coconut oil, etc. On bacon: we say that there is no such thing as “good quality” bacon. Pork is the most inflammatory of meats, and pigs will (and do) eat anything, including the 80% of their diets that are corn and soy products. We mostly steer away from bacon, though sometimes Melissa will scarf a couple pieces with breakfast. Look for organic, nitrate/nitrite-free bacon, and eat it in moderation. We’d LOVE to come to Australia, but we’d have to have several workshops booked there to be able to afford the travel expense. Ask your local gym if they’d be interested in hosting us – maybe we could present a workshop at your gym!
They should be. We encourage people to look for higher quality meat from your local butcher or farmer’s market, anyway, because supermarket meat is sketchy at best.
Hey Guys, great recipe. Have some grass-fed beef ribs i want to do this with.
Recipe didn’t call for any water at all? You just put what was listed in there and that is it?
Melissa @ Whole9 says
@Darren: The recipe didn’t call for any, but I’ve never made ribs before (any kind), so I’m not sure if you’d want to add some water or not. You can try it, or maybe Lydia or Mel can weigh in?
Well my parents are coming to visit today. My dad did the last Whole 30 with me and has been Paleo since, losing nearly 35 pounds and getting control of his blood pressure.
So I decided this would be a great dinner tonight, but I have found a MAJOR problem with this recipe and believe you will too.
At 2 hours and 33 minutes the smell from the crock pot has my mouth watering and now I have to seriously wait 6 more hours before I can enjoy it!!!!!!!!! LOL
I had the same question as Darren re:liquid, but trusted the recipe…don’t worry!!!
There is plenty from not only the ribs, but all the H2O rich vegetables…my crockpot filled.
Hats off!!! to Lydia….I made this recipe for a strapping, big-appetite 6’4” carnivore last night –
—-a great success!!! I refused to send home a doggy-bag…I race Ironman triathlons and this is a perfect
training meal….so I hoarded the small amount of leftover for myself…
How do we contact Lydia for more recipes?
FYI…We have the luxury of a wonderful local butcher here in Carbondale, IL – my ribs were hand cut for me.
Can someone give me the recipe for Cauliflower Rice? Also, where can you buy higher quality Country Style Spare Ribs?
Melissa "Melicious" Joulwan says
Hey, Jennifer! I have a few recipes on my blog for variations on cauliflower “rice”…
This is soooooo good for a second I thought this could not be whole30 approved! I also substituted the night shades with celery and zucchini squash. again good stuff!!!
Also, no extra water needed.
Great dish which I made last night. I cooked mine for 12 Hours! However a little tip is not to add any additional salt (i only added a small amount!) as the ribs i used were already quite salty.
Great recipe! Also try adding good quality rootbeer enough to cover meat. It sounds weird but trust me its the bomb. Follow above recipe otherwise with addition of rootbeer instead of water.
Luke R. says
Yeah, made this last night. Planned to save some for the following day, but ended up eating ALL of it in roughly 15 minutes. Great recipe.
…Oh and I didn’t have 5lbs of meat, just in case you all were worried about me (1.3lbs). That would’ve been an EPIC feast for one!
Recipe calls for diced peppers. What type of peppers?
Melissa @ Whole9 says
Louis – use bell peppers – any color (green, yellow, red or orange) would taste great.