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Whole30 2014: Week 1 Meal Plan

whole30

I really don’t understand meal plans. I mean, conceptually, I get it. When you’re starting a new eating plan, an expert tells you exactly what to eat and when to make it a little easier. But practically speaking, it makes no sense to me.

WHAT IF I DON’T WANT TO EAT SALMON ON MONDAY?!

However, I understand the desire to have a more concrete plan than “eat clean food,” especially for someone new to paleo or tackling a Whole30® for the first time. So this post is a description of what I’d do if I was going to do the official Whole30 that’s starting on January 1.

A few things to keep in mind:

1. This is a Whole30 Meal Plan… and it’s not. It’s more of a food and cooking plan. I’m not going to tell you what to eat when, but I have made recommendations for foods you’ll want to make sure you have in your kitchen and recipes I think make the Whole30 easy and delicious.

2. I haven’t specified things like breakfast, lunch, dinner, or snacks. As I explained in Well Fed  and Well Fed 2 — and as you’ve probably noticed in reading my food logs in the past — I eat the same kinds of foods at all of my meals. If I want breakfast food at dinner time, I break out the eggs. And my breakfast is usually chicken, sautéed with sweet potatoes and collard greens, with a side of zucchini soup. I’m not suggesting that the Whole30 means you have to eat zucchini soup for breakfast. I’m just saying you’ll probably have more fun if you stop thinking of foods as appropriate for a particular meal. Eat what you want when you want it. (As long as it’s from the Whole30-approved list, of course.)

3. I created a complete shopping list. I went through the recipes and made a list of everything you’ll need to make the food below, and it’s in a PDF so you can print it out, cross out the things you don’t need, and add whatever else you think you might want to nosh. You’ll definitely want some stuff in your kitchen that’s not included in this blog post or shopping list. I’m talking about lovely nibbles like coconut chips or black olives, or luscious in-season citrus fruit, or a vegetable that catches your eye at the farmer’s market. Download the Week 1 Shopping List.

4. You’ll probably need more food than you think. The Whole30 may limit how often you eat in restaurants, not because you can’t, but because eating at home is usually less stressful and more delicious. Below are some rough guidelines for how much protein and veggies you need to feed yourself each day; for more on this food math, you might want to check out my cookbook Well Fed or this post called “Stocking Up.”

Per person, per day, you need approximately:
3/4 pound to 1 1/2 pounds of protein
6-8 cups of vegetables

Think about the people you need to feed and adjust your shopping and cooking accordingly. I guarantee you that you’d rather have more food than you need (you can always pop it in the freezer until you’re ready for it) than to run out mid-week when you’re tired and hungry. If you’re cooking for ripped-to-the-max CrossFitters, they eat more of everything than a “regular” person. If you’re cooking for just yourself, you might want to cut quantities in half, or freeze half of the larger recipes below.

This might seem complicated and overwhelming now, but after a week or two, you’ll be a pro. Relax! You really can’t do it wrong. I promise.

5. Keep it simple. You don’t need to follow a bunch of complicated recipes to eat well, and I recommend that during your first week, especially, you make it as easy on yourself as possible. That’s why I encourage you to make Hot Plates (see details below) and a few simple recipes that yield large quantities so you have lots of useful, yummy leftovers. (Want more ideas for keeping it simple? This post has tons of meal ideas that don’t require a recipe.)

This Food Plan is based on two components: (1) Hot Plates, which are essentially meat+veg sautés you can make on-the-fly, and (2) Bulk Recipes that make scrumptious dishes in larger quantities so you have leftovers throughout the week. The combination of both means you can fight boredom and have your own personal menu of choices to choose from every day. Your fridge is about to become your favorite restaurant.

The info below lists the recipes I recommend you make for a week’s worth of meals, plus a step-by-step plan for getting it all done in about two hours. 3-2-1… GO!

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Hot Plates

The basis of cooking in our house is Hot Plates. It’s basically this:

Protein + Veggies + Fat + Spices + Sauce = Meal

With that in mind, I cook a pile of protein and bushels of vegetables to store in the fridge until it’s time to eat. Then I quickly sauté whatever I’m in the mood for and top it with spices and sauces to jazz it up. Easy! Here’s my recommendation for your week:

Ground Beef: 2-3 pounds, browned in a skillet with lots of salt, ground black pepper, and garlic powder.

Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs : 2-3 pounds, roasted with lots of salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, and paprika.

Tuna, Sardines, Shrimp: Stock up on cans of tuna (my favorite is Genova Tonno, packed olive oil, no extra ingredients), sardines (my fave are Crown Prince, skinless and boneless), and shrimp (I defrost frozen, wild-caught in the fridge for last-minute meals).

Cooked Vegetables: Cook a bunch of veggies and store in the fridge. All of these (except the spaghetti squash and sweet potatoes), get a basic Steam-Sauté treatment:
Spaghetti Squash (how-to video for cutting spaghetti squash)
Sweet potatoes
Broccoli
Green beans
Cabbage
Bell Peppers
Greens: kale, collards, spinach, or chard

Raw Vegetables: These are great for salad plates, snacks, and as add-ons alongside a Hot Plate:
Carrots
Cucumbers
Bell Peppers
Scallions
Snap Peas
Jicama

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Sauces: A drizzle of something luscious turns meat and vegetables into something you really want to eat. These three are very versatile and quick to make:

Sunshine Sauce: like Asian peanut sauce, without the annoying (anti-nutritious) peanuts

Olive Oil Mayo: so much better than store-bought, and perfect for salad dressings, tuna/chicken salad, or dolloping on top of grilled meat

Moroccan Dipping Sauce: fresh, a little spicy, and fast to make; excellent drizzled over Hot Plates and doubles as salad dressing

Alert! If you make roasted chicken thighs and roasted spaghetti squash and Sunshine Sauce and stock up on snap peas, you have everything you need for Pad Thai.

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More Ideas for “No Recipe Required” Meals
You can find lots more detail and tons of ideas for Hot Plates in my cookbook Well Fed. The links below provide ideas, inspiration, and how-to advice:

Stocking Up: some advice on how much food you need to buy
The Method Behind My Madness: more details on how to cook meal components in advance
How to Steam-Sauté Veggies: the never-run-out method

10 Burger Toppers
10 Ways to Dress Up Your Broccoli
Stuff to Put on Eggs
10 Paleo Flavor Boosters

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Recommended Recipes

In addition to Hot Plates, I think it nourishes the soul to have some home-cooked, comfort foods in the fridge. The great thing about all the recipes I’ve listed below is that they taste better the longer they sit, so you’re guaranteed delicious meals all week long.

recipes
Chocolate Chili
:
This is one of my most popular recipes, and if you double it, you can freeze half to have chili on-demand.

Italian Pork Roast: This recipe yields tender, flavorful pork that’s great on its own and works well in Hot Plates or salads, too.

Silky Gingered Zucchini Soup: Soups are one of my favorite ways to get extra vegetables without even really thinking about it. This is a favorite of mine for breakfast, but if that’s too weird for you, just eat a small bowl before lunch or dinner, or as a snack.

hr_brownShopping

I made a shopping list that includes all the ingredients for these recipes. Be sure to give it a once over to add additional stuff — like veggies and fruit to supplement these recipes — and to remove stuff you already have in your pantry. Download the Week 1 Shopping List.

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Cookup: The Plan

If you want to cook all of the stuff listed above and want to spend the minimum amount of time in the kitchen, there’s a plan below for how you can do it. This should serve 2-4 people for the better part of a week, give or take a meal or two. The recommendations included here are the way I cook for my husband (6′ 5″) and myself (5′ 4″) to keep us going through work days, strength training, walks, and yoga.

NOTE: This is pro-level cooking organization. It requires you to fire up the stove, the oven, and the slow cooker all at the same time. Put on some favorite tunes, get yourself a big glass of water, take a deep breath, and start chopping and stirring. You can do it!

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On The Menu
Here’s the comprehensive list of what you’re making in this Cookup:
Roasted Chicken Thighs
Olive Oil Mayo
Roasted Spaghetti Squash
Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Italian Pork Roast
Chocolate Chili
Sunshine Sauce
Browned Ground Beef
Broccoli
Green Beans
Moroccan Dipping Sauce
Silky Gingered Zucchini Soup

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Get Prepped

1. Sharpen your knife. Get out your cutting board, some baking sheets, and a non-stick skillet. Drag your slow cooker out of the cabinet. Dust off your blender. Fill your water bottle. Turn on your tunes.

2. Take an egg out of the fridge to come to room temperature for the Olive Oil Mayo.

3. Preheat the oven to 400F for the chicken thighs, roasted spaghetti squash, and sweet potatoes.

4. Wash and cut the broccoli and green beans you are going to steam-sauté.

5. Collect an array of storage containers and jars for the finished food.

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Let’s Get Cookin’

1. Get the Italian Pork Roast going. We’re easing into it with a simple one. This takes almost no hands-on time and will yield massive amounts of protein. Season the pork roast and plunk it in the slow cooker. [Italian Pork Roast Recipe]

2. Start the Chocolate Chili. Make the chili all the way through to the end of the recipe so it can simmer on the back of the stove while you do the rest of the kitchen work. [Chocolate Chili Recipe]

3. Get the chicken and veggies in the oven. Place the chicken thighs on a large baking sheet, sprinkle generously with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. On another baking sheet, place the cut spaghetti squash and a few whole, unpeeled sweet potatoes. Drizzle 3 tablespoons of water around the squash. Slide both baking sheets into the oven and set a timer for 30 minutes.

4. Make some sauces. Homemade mayo takes about 5 minutes to make. How amazingly great is that?! Ditto for the Sunshine Sauce. [Olive Oil Mayo Recipe | Sunshine Sauce Recipe]

5. Brown the ground beef. Crumble the ground beef into a very large skillet — I like non-stick; you do what makes you feel comfortable. Season it generously with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Cook, breaking up clumps with a wooden spoon, until it’s no longer pink. Remove the meat to a storage container, but keep the pan where it is. Time to steam-sauté those veggies.

Did your 30-minute timer go off yet? Check the chicken and veggies in the oven. The chicken should be golden brown and sizzling. The squash should be tender to the touch. If yes, remove the chicken and squash from the oven, but slide the potatoes back in for another 20 minutes. If no, set the timer for 5-10 minutes and keep the chicken and squash in the oven.

6. Steam-sauté your veggies. Put 1/2 cup water in the hot pan, bring it to a boil, and add the broccoli. Let it steam-sauté for 5-7 minutes, then remove. (While it’s cooking, you can take a quick meditation break. Close your eyes, and do 10 rounds of slow breathing: in for 4 beats, out for 4 beats, completely filling and emptying your lungs. Comfort and joy, right here.) When the broccoli is tender, remove it to a storage container, add another 1/2 cup water to the pan, and cook the green beans. Repeat as necessary. While the veggies are cooking, make the Moroccan Dipping Sauce. [Complete Steam-Sauté Instructions]

Time to check the chicken, squash, and sweet potatoes again. How are they doing?

7. Make the Moroccan Dipping Sauce. While the green beans are steaming, whip up a batch of this sauce that doubles as salad dressing. Moroccan Dipping Sauce Recipe

8. Make the Silky Gingered Zucchini Soup. This is last because by now you might be sick of cooking. If you are, give yourself permission to skip the soup. But if you’ve still got gas in the tank, make the soup and let it simmer while you get ready for your cooldown. [Silky Gingered Zucchini Soup]

Are your sweet potatoes out of the oven? They should be finished by now.

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Pack It Up

As your simmered and roasted dishes finish up, place them in BPA-free storage containers (like these) and pop them into the fridge. Remember: Despite what your grandma might have told you, it’s better to put freshly-cooked food in the fridge while it’s warm; let it cool slightly on the countertop then get it into the fridge. Your homemade food is safe to eat for about a week; for more on food storage safety, visit TheKitchn and TheDailyMeal.

I also recommend you make a list of all the food you just cooked and make a list to hang on your refrigerator door. It’s an excellent reminder of how completely badass you are — and it makes it easy to review your home menu of deliciousness.

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So there you have it: Week 1. Here’s Week 2 — and Week 3.

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More Resources

Just in case you need additional ideas, support, and motivation, here are a few more tidbits to help make your Whole30 as tasty and stress free as possible.

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Well Fed: Paleo Recipes For People Who Love To Eat: my cookbook of Whole30-approved recipes, including Hot Plates and more ideas for how to do a Weekly Cookup.

Well Fed 2: More Paleo Recipes For People Who Love To Eat: my second cookbook of Whole30-approved recipes, including 15 meatball recipes, 8 sauces to make with homemade mayo, and adaptations for the autoimmune protocol (AIP).

Great Ingredients: No Recipe Required: a roundup of delicious meals you can make pretty quickly and without following a recipe

30 Reasons to Whole30: In case all this talk of cooking has stressed you out, here are 30 reminders why the Whole30 is worth it.

The Whole30 Daily: a kickass daily email subscription service that sends detailed info and helpful tips to your inbox every day of your Whole30 (Full disclosure: Dave and I worked on this with Melissa and Dallas, and it’s really, really good.)

Stupid Easy Paleo Whole30 & Guide To Clean-Eating Challenges: Steph of Stupid Easy Paleo is supporting the Whole30 on January 1. You can read her rationale here, get answers to FAQs here, and download her 14-page guide to make the Whole30 a little easier.

30 Days of Whole30 Meals from Nom Nom Paleo: she has excellent taste, so shamelessly stealing her meal ideas is an excellent idea

A Month of Whole30 Dinner Ideas & 10 Tips To Make Your Whole30 a Success: from the fabulous Holly Would If She Could

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115 Responses to “Whole30 2014: Week 1 Meal Plan”

  1. […] Clothes Make The Girl / Posted on: January 01, 1970The Clothes Make The Girl – I really don’t understand meal plans. I mean, conceptually, I get it. When […]

    • Elizabeth says:

      THank you for keeping this series posted and not taking it down! I just finished my meal prep for my first week of whole 30 and I truly feel prepared for whole 30. I do not feel lost and overwhelmed by all the recipes out there. THank you so so much and the Moroccan dipping sauc is seriously THE BOMB

    • Kate says:

      Oh! My! Goodness! My boyfriend and I finished our Whole30 about 2 weeks ago. I really don’t think that we could have done it without your meal plans! You’re right, what if I don’t want to eat salmon on Monday??? It really kept us on track by giving us many options. We have (together) lost 50 pounds and we are feeling great! Thank you for keeping this up for so long! :) UMMM also, LOVED meatball madness was tons of fun!

      • Mel says:

        Congratulations on successfully Whole30-ing! YAY! I’m glad these recipes helped — and doubly happy you enjoyed Meatball Madness!

  2. Becky says:

    This is just what I needed heading into the new year, thank you! I spent the first part of 2013 on the ball with the cooking on Sundays (mostly from Well Fed) but I “fell off the wagon” as the year went on. We’ve got a paleo challenge starting at our box on the 6th and my husband and I are psyched to get back into clean eating after the debauchery of the holidays.

  3. TDC says:

    Wow this is brilliant!I usually do some sort of cookup but always overstretch myself so this is going to be a great way to ease into week one,which starts on 8 Jan for me!

  4. Michele Johnson says:

    I love you Mel. You need to come back to Estes Park! I see another seminar in the works!

  5. […] Top 15 Recipes in 2013 and she's provided a HUGE service to the still-figuring-this-out crowd with her post discussing her view on meal plans & how to properly prepare to EAT. Her cookbooks, Well Fed & Well Fed 2, are must-have […]

  6. Brian says:

    YES! This is EXACTLY what the Paleo community needs more of. A solid gameplan of how to tackle a week’s worth of cooking in one day. Brilliant!

  7. Liz B. says:

    Yes, Yes, Yes! Something which had seemed very daunting now seems very doable. Thank You!

  8. Martine says:

    Thanks so much… great info that helps me think and plan… I am starting my Whole 30 on Jan 3rd and really excited to create another level of discipline for myself…

  9. Chris says:

    This is really amazing! Seeing more specifically how to lay out a bunch of food prep quickly is super helpful. I love that it provides a framework without being a strict meal plan. I’m about to start my first Whole 30, so I appreciate the timely inspiration.

  10. Kerry says:

    Very very helpful! Thank you for taking the time to write up this plan and share it with us. Well Fed is my favorite Paleo cookbook. Heading over to Amazon to get 2 now!

  11. Tracy says:

    This is wonderful. I’m getting geared up for the January Whole30.

    Is there a print-friendly version of your blog?

  12. […] got another newly updated post here: 30 Reasons to Whole30 with lots of good stuff AND her Week 1 Meal Plan with yummies like her famous Chocolate Chili and Sunshine […]

  13. Morgan says:

    Does this plan feed you and your husband for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Or is this just dinner?

  14. Stacy says:

    I’m gearing up for my second Whole 30, which starts on Jan. 1, and I knew to go straight to Well Fed and Well Fed 2. And now I find this, a handy meal plan with suggestions on how to organize cook up over the weekend? Mel, you’re wonderful. I love your food and I’m looking forward to eating lots of it over the next month.

  15. Mel says:

    I’m so glad you guys are finding this plan helpful. I have another one coming next week — and two posts of 30 Whole30 approved recipes. You should be eating some really good food this month. Happy 2014!

  16. Joan says:

    I’ve done a couple of Whole30s and seen some great benefits, but since I’ve got Hashimoto’s thyroiditus, I’m going to do the autoimmune protocol this next time around. If I leave out eggs and mayo, is this cook up AIP compliant?

    • Mel says:

      AIP guidelines exclude eggs, nightshades, nuts, and seed spices. For the complete list, read this link: http://www.thepaleomom.com/autoimmunity/the-autoimmune-protocol

      Unfortunately, that means several of hte recipes above are out: Chocolate Chili (nutshades), Sunshine Sauce (seeds), mayo (egg). The Slow Cooker Pork Roast is good to go in the version on my site but NOT in Well Fed 2, unless you follow the AIP modifications I included in the cookbook — and the Zucchini Soup on my site is approved (but the Well Fed 2 version is not unless you follow the AIP modifications).

      Well Fed 2 has 100 recipes that are both Whole30 and AIP approved, if you’re looking for more AIP recipes. Also, you might look into http://autoimmune-paleo.com/ and her cookbook.

  17. Ginie says:

    I just bought the Well Fed 2 on Kindle and I love it. Well Fed got me through my first Whole30 so I figured this would be perfect for my second go at it. I am curious though as to the two NON Whole30 recipes. All ingredients are approved, but the recipe is not. Something about how it comes together. Can you explain that a little more? I am wondering what else I might have messed up by using the right ingredients the wrong way. I dont paleo-ify anything into dessert or a snack, so I am probably ok, but an explanation will help. Thanks

    • Mel says:

      So glad you like the Well Fed cookbooks! Thank you for buying!

      Melissa and Dallas of Whole9/Whole30 reviewed all the recipes and felt like the Banana Pecan Ice Cream and the Sweet Potato “Waffle” — while made of approved ingredients — violate the spirit of the Whole30 and could interfere with the psychological part of the program. They’re just very, very strict with their interpretation of their guidelines.

  18. Jennifer says:

    Fantastic! Exactly the kind of thing I need to keep me on track. You are awesome!

  19. […]  Melissa “Melicious” Joulwan from TheClothesMakeTheGirl.  She has a great post for a Whole30 Week 1 Food Plan.  Also, if you’re not familiar with the Whole30 be sure to check out Whole9Life where […]

  20. Emily says:

    This is awesome! Thanks for putting this handy guide together.

  21. Stacey says:

    Oh wow, the pad thai has just got me so excited, I am trying to transition my kids to paleo, and I can’t wait to try this, off to harass my neighbour for a spaghetti squash. Thanks for the inspiration

  22. JoAnn Jordan says:

    I love the idea of preparing ahead! My daughter is a vegetarian. Do you have a similar plan?

  23. Michael says:

    Your a Rockstar, I hate cook books but love both of the well fed books, they promote creative thinking and inspire me to cook vs telling me what to do…….we’ll fed is well started; keep going/don’t stop.

  24. Denise says:

    First off Thanks for such a well planned week. My husband and I are new to the Whole30 and needed a list like this. In Step 6 you have us make a batch of ground beef…what is this used for/in?

    • Mel says:

      That’s to saute with vegetables to make “hot plates” or you can mix it with eggs for breakfast… or put in a bowl with broth and veggies to make quick soups. See the “Hot Plates” section above. Basically, it’s cooked protein to supplement with veggies so you can have a meal in about 10 minutes.

  25. Sarah Joy says:

    Are you kidding me?! You should be nominated for the most helpful thing I’ve found on Pinterest ever. Starting my first Whole 30 tomorrow I’m really excited but this post just made it that much better! Thanks!!

  26. Elyse Smith says:

    What can I sub spaghetti squash for? I am in Australia and it is IMPOSSIBLE to find here! I am buying the seeds and growing them as I am quite fascinated by it but that won’t help this week :P Thank you x

    • Carly R says:

      I have seen spaghetti squash at the farmers market but not regularly. We (fellow Aussies)are going to use zoodles (zucchini noodles) in place of the spaghetti squash. Hope that helps.

  27. Carly R says:

    Hi Mel!
    Me and my husband have decided to do the Whole30 for the month of January and your blog has been absolutely awesome. We spent a good chunk of today doing this cook-up in preparation for Week 1. Thank you so much for such a helpful post!

  28. […] you’re fuh-reaking out about what to cook this week, click here to check out this ace Week 1 Food Plan that Melissa Joulwan’s made just for you! Also, Rach from Meatified has collected 30 Days of […]

  29. Nicole says:

    Just made a bunch of food to start it off right! Thank you so much for posting this, I’ve made about half of it so far and my fridge is already full!

  30. JennyB says:

    I feel so encouraged by this, thanks! Dumb question: is there a difference between a slow cooker and a crock pot? Do you recommend one brand/style in particular?
    Happy New Year!

  31. JennyB says:

    Great – thanks!

  32. Kati says:

    How long will the Moroccan Dipping Sauce keep? It says serve at room temperature but should it be stored at room temperature also?

    • Mel says:

      Moroccan dipping sauce should be stored in the refrigerator and should taste fresh for a week or so. It doesn’t go ‘bad,’ but it just starts to lose its freshness after a while.

      I think it tastes most zingy at room temperature, but honestly, it’s delicious cold, too.

  33. Jennifer K says:

    THANK YOU a hundred times over! Having something like this spelled out for me is tremendously helpful. Once I get the hang of these new eating habits I’m sure I’ll be able to figure stuff out on my own but this at least gives me somewhere to start.

  34. Lorena says:

    Bless you, bless you, bless you! And recipes! (Very important because I gave my copy of Well Fed to my mom last week, so until I can afford to replace it…)

  35. Margot says:

    Not to be cheesy but literally for the first time ever reading a meal plan and grocery list I just said (out loud) “hm, I can actually do this”. Hats off in a big way.

  36. Hannah says:

    Hi! My husband and I just started our first Whole30, I bought Well Fed and then found your fb book and blog! Excited for your weekly shopping lists! Thanks!

  37. Jody says:

    Very useful post and love your book, but I have a question about doing weekly cook ups. Do your meat and veggies that you have cooked up start to go bad after about 4 or 5 days?

  38. Kelly says:

    Thank you so much for this wonderful menu and shopping list and cook up. This is exactly what I needed to start out our second whole30! My three boys are doing it with us this time and this is all food they will eat and love! Muchas Gracias!

  39. Deirdra says:

    Thanks for this! I have been doing a Whole90 and my husband, business partner and 2 close friends are all starting their own Whole30. This post just inspired a shop, prep and cook party. Thanks!
    Oh and I ordered both your cookbooks for my birthday! Thanks for all the awesome!xoxo

  40. Wow! This is amazing, and exactly what I needed to get ready to start my Whole 30 on Monday! Thank you so very much!

  41. Dawn Parrish says:

    Wow! I just finished cooking and prepping all but the soup which I will make for dinner tonight. My husband was tortured by yummy smells and my garage fridge is ground zero for all the prepped containers. This is fabulous!!!
    Than you thank you thank you!!!!!

  42. Megan says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. This is going to make my second week of whole30 SOOOOO much easier. You are the best.

  43. […] afternoon, I spent three hours prepping ingredients and precooking food, something recommended by Melissa Joulwan, an authority on Whole 30 cooking. It felt odd to be cooking so much in advance (I normally make […]

  44. […] leftover chicken, green beans, butternut squash and tomatoes, all prepared according to the meal plan. […]

  45. […] Whole30 2014 Week 1 Meal Plan from The Clothes Make the Girl […]

  46. loriborealis says:

    Woman!

    Thank you so much for this weekly list! It is the hardest thing in the world for me to plan my meals and this does 3/4 of the work and leaves the rest up to my personal taste.

    Also, if I had known 20 years ago how freaking easy it is to plop a pork roast in the crockpot and have delicious soft tasty meat all week long…Gamechanger. I swear.

    Peace!

  47. […] you want a full 28-day plan, check out her week-by-week mealtime play-by-play here: Week One; Week Two; Week Three (coming soon!); Week Four (coming […]

  48. […] some help? Melissa Joulwan offers Whole30 weekly meal plans over on her blog The Clothes Make the […]

  49. Ladonna says:

    This definitely has made the transition easier. I was struggling with trying to figure out how to make whole 30 meal plans. My favorite way to eat the pork: heating a baked sweat potato up in olive oil and then topping it with the pulled pork and covering with an runny egg! Perfect breakfast! :)

  50. Shalee says:

    First of all, you are amazing! I have been addicted to your website ever since your Well Fed 2 book caught my eye while casually strolling through Book People last month with my huge triple Caramel Brûlée Latte and extra whip.

    I flipped through, fell in love, immediately bought it and threw away my dessert in a cup. I knew that I just found what I was waiting for to use as mine and my husband’s inspiration to make an overdue change this year. Since then, I discovered you actually lived here in Austin, SO cool! And have read other resources you have recommended.

    I did all my reading and spent many hours on your site to prepare for our first week of the Whole30 starting last week. Thanks again for your organized shopping list and weekly meal plan. You’re a genius.

    My only issue is that I’m noticing an upset stomach after every single meal. I thought it might go away but it has been consistent for a week now. I didn’t have digestive issues before. The uneasy feeling starts immediately after my meal, or towards the end, and can last for 20 minutes up to 4-5 hours when I need to eat my next meal. Your food I’ve been making is delicious and I make sure to get a good mix of protein, fat, veg, fruit but I’m now finding that I’m not looking forward to my next meal or even eating in general.

    I don’t want anything to get in the way of our new healthy lifestyle that we are both excited about and committed to. I thought briefly that it could be a mental thing since I now know how unhealthy and damaging some foods can be, foods that I used to eat, and I’m also wanting to lose weight after making this change, so maybe my body’s unconsciously taking the focus off of food. But it has caused me to miss out on workouts and not eat as much as I probably should.

    If it’s not just in my head, and there is something going on in my gut with this new style of eating, I want to know what you would recommend and if you’ve had any others go through the same thing. I started looking online and saw talk about some people that don’t benefit from Paleo for whatever reason, hopefully that’s not me, but I honestly didn’t know what to believe.

    I knew I trusted you and if you didn’t know the answer, you could point me in the right direction. So that’s why I’m posting here. :)

    Any suggestions would be fantastic!

    Thanks for everything!

    Shalee

    • Mel says:

      Thank you so much for buying Well Fed 2 and stopping by to say hi!

      I’m sorry your stomach is bothering you! I haven’t heard this before, but a quick Google search told me that it’s not super uncommon. There is some really helpful info in this post:
      http://www.paleoplan.com/2012/09-17/still-having-digestive-problems-while-eating-paleo/

      Basically, any change in diet can affect digstion. It might be more protein, more fat, more veggies, or more all of it that you’re used to. I recommend you read that post, then maybe start experimenting on yourself to see if you can track down the culprit.

      I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful and specific, but there are just too many variables.

  51. […] Whole30 2014 Week 1 Meal Plan from The Clothes Make the Girl […]

  52. Katie says:

    Is this food plan for one or should I double it to feed two?

  53. Patricia says:

    This looks really helpful. Which of these recipes can/cannot be frozen? Anything to adjust if I am freezing these foods? Thank you!

    • Mel says:

      Generally speaking, soups and stews freeze/defrost really well, while “plain” cooked meats and veggies usually do not. They get dry and/or mushy when defrosted. The one exception is meatballs; they hold up well under freezing and defrosting.

      From the list above, the Chocolate Chili and Zucchini Soup can be frozen and defrosted. Everything else is better fresh.

      In a pinch, you can freeze the partially-cooked vegetables, but their texture isn’t quite as good after defrosting.

  54. Casey says:

    Reeeally dumb question… I’ve never seen, much less cooked a spaghetti squash before. Once it’s cut in half (thanks for the awesome video by the way), do I just stick each half on the cookie sheet? Once it’s roasted how do you eat it? Thanks for your help, this is Whole30 #2 for my roommate and I and we’re trying to be more adventurous than green beans and asparagus this go around :)

  55. […] Whole30 2014 Week 1 Meal Plan from The Clothes Make the Girl […]

  56. Tasha says:

    I am on day 19 of the whole 30. My husband and 3 kids did not do it with me. In the beginning I craved the cookies, cakes and ice cream that they ate in front of me. Here I am 19 days later and feeling great, and still going strong. I am making this chili on Super Bowl Sunday, which is my last day of the whole 30. My 13 year daughter wants me to make it tomorrow, but she will just have to wait. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe.

    • Mel says:

      Congratulations on 19 days of awesome! I imagine it must be challenging in a household where others are eating whatever, but it sounds like you’re a champ! YAY FOR YOU!

      The Chocolate Chili is perfect for Super Bowl Sunday! Do you have Well Fed 2? The plantain chips (from the Plantain Nachos recipe) taste awesome with the chili.

      Happy happy to you!

  57. Robbin says:

    Silly question? Approx. how much money do you spend each week in shopping?

  58. […] couldn’t have done it without the guidance of Melissa over at TheClothesMakeTheGirl.com. Melissa doesn’t know who I am, and I don’t know who Melissa is, but she provided […]

  59. […] day one.. I have been reading lots about Paleo and whole30 eating lifestyles. It makes sense to me and I do want to eliminate processed foods from my diet. I […]

  60. Rachel says:

    Quick question for you– you list “Sweet potatoes” as one of the items on the menu, and at the end of the instructions you say “Are your sweet potatoes out of the oven? They should be finished by now”… but I can’t find the instructions for them (do I cut ‘em, put them on a pan, in a pot?)- It is entirely possible I am missing something obvious, but I would appreciate the guidance anyway :)

    • Mel says:

      Hi, there! Instructions for sweet potatoes are in step 4.

      “4. Get the chicken and veggies in the oven. Place the chicken thighs on a large baking sheet, sprinkle generously with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. On another baking sheet, place the cut spaghetti squash and a few whole, unpeeled sweet potatoes. Drizzle 3 tablespoons of water around the squash. Slide both baking sheets into the oven and set a timer for 30 minutes.”

      • Rachel says:

        Thank you!! Sweet potatoes are now out of the oven (as are almost all the recipes you listed! Yay! …only the soup is left to do, because I feel a little anti-kitchen now, haha. I am looking forward to cooking it later though!)

        Is it your suggestion to just cut them in half and store them in the fridge, to be reheated later?

        Thanks again for all your help, and quick responses!

  61. […] a planner? Not a problem. I do not plan meals. Ever. (Okay, I tried once, and failed.) I go to the store, buy what looks […]

  62. Morgan says:

    Hi there! Just wanted to thank you for your whole 30 plans. I wish I would have found your website when I was doing all my planning and shopping last week! I’m on day 4 now and I absolutely agree with you about the meal planning. One sure fire way for me not to want to eat something is tell me I have to. So for the next week I’m going to follow your advice. Also, made your pork carnitas. And they were fabulous. My husband and I were scraping the pan of all the crusted pork. Yum!

  63. Lori says:

    This is somewhat off topic, but I am stressed/overwhelmed/upset by basic recipes failing for reasons I can’t explain. It also is doing the same for my pocketbook! We are doing our first Whole30…ate ok before – not worst of the worst, but definitely not great either. We are 5 days from the end of our 30 days, and I’d like to stick to this way of eating, but it seems like it’ll be difficult to enjoy sticking with it with FAILS on things like a freakin mayo recipe! First mayo attempt failed on a consistency level…this time followed the video posted here ROCKED the consistency part (thanks!), but it tastes AWFUL! Like bitter wood! Used light olive oil. Sitting here racking brain about what I did wrong…thought I used a higher quality oil…I did accidentally let egg sit out for 3 hours…may have used old mustard powder…but I’ve also read about blending issues making oil bitter…or lastly I also wonder if it is just my tastes that are screwed up from years of commercial junk? But I don’t know cause I mean this. stuff. tastes. BAD! I just don’t know where to start, but I feel like its too risky/expensive to try 10 more times to get it right! (Especially when every comment about the recipe I’m trying is a raving review about how awesome it tastes! My coconut butter didn’t turn out so hot either!) Anyone else having these issues? I’d just like something to go right for once considering how much time (I know my kids are missing me as at times I feel I live in a grocery store or kitchen!), MONEY, and effort is going into this great way of eating! I’ve cut out the bread, pasta, sugar, oils, dairy, but dammit I NEED mayo and other such basics to make this transition easier! :) It also makes me scared to try other recipes like these out of fear they will taste awful and be a waste of time and money – hence the 20 days in between my first mayo attempt and my second!

    • Mel says:

      I’m not sure how to advise you on your mayo… The first thing that comes to mind is that if you like the taste of commercial mayo, you might prefer homemade with cider vinegar instead of lemon juice. You might also try reducing the amount of mustard powder to 1/4 teaspoon.

  64. […] weekends which leaves us with ready to re-heat dinners and lunches for the week ahead. I followed Melissa’s strategy from The Clothes Make the Girl for a big Sunday cook-up and the hubby and I have been happy with the results. I did find that I was […]

  65. Love your recipes! However, I’m not able to print out the shopping list after downloading this. Any suggestions?

  66. […] indeed I did. And, to top that off, I have been following Melissa Joulwan’s menu outline for Week 1 of a Whole30. So, I’m feeling pretty damn […]

  67. Alexas says:

    This is SOOOOOOO helpful. I need “hold my hand” instructions like this. But one problem….what if I don’t eat meat? I eat seafood but no beef, pork or chicken. Recommended substitutes?

    • Mel says:

      Obviously, you can’t make the chili or pork roast without meat :-)

      You can sub shrimp or white fish in the pad thai. Seafood doesn’t allow for pre-cooking very well, except for steamed shrimp, so for you, I’d recommend the vegetable recipes above, then just cook fish/seafood separately each day. You might also like something like a big omelet made in advance, cut into wedges and eaten either hot or at room temp, if you want to do some pre-cooking.

      • Alexas says:

        Thanks so much. I think I’ll try the chili with veggie crumbs. You just saved me from giving up. I have NO TIME to plan and end up eating crap. This makes my desire to eat healthier totally doable!!!

  68. BeckyF says:

    Thank you thank you thank you!!! This post has me making my first Paleo jump! As a working mom of 2 young ones, the idea of a completely flexible heat-n-eat after a long day rocks. I’m looking forward to freezing leftovers (hello, lunches!). A thousand times, thank you!! I’m doing a happy dance as my sweet potatoes are finishing up.

  69. Linda says:

    This is so inspiring…I have a few questions:
    1. I make a smoothie almost every day (spinach banana celery chia seeds) how do i incorporate this in the diet
    2. I eat VAST amounts of fruit. I mean it. I’m almost addicted to apples and carrots. Are they ok? do i eat them after my meal as i see snacks aren’t really common?
    SO EXCITED FOR THIS!

    • Mel says:

      Smoothies are not technically forbidden on the Whole30, but they’re not recommended. You can read all about the details and rationale of the program here http://whole30.com/whole30-program-rules/, then you can make your decision about if you want to keep your smoothies. It’s totally up to you.

      As for fruit, if you have a “sugar demon” issue, a ton of fruit isn’t a great idea — it will just keep firing up your sugar cravings. A general rule of thumb is 1-2 servings of fruit per day. Again, the program guidelines can give you more on that. You might also want to visit the Whole30 forum where experts on the program can answer your questions. http://forum.whole9life.com/

  70. Eileen says:

    Just wanted to double check something isn’t missing. In the cooking steps it goes from step 1 to step 3.

    Thank you SO much for this.

  71. […] The Clothes Make the Girl – Whole30 Meal Plan – Good meal planning stuff! […]

  72. Michelle says:

    I’ve just stumbled on your blog and site. Love, love, love everything! I’m rushing out to the store to get everything for the upcoming weeks you’ve posted. I been “primal” for about 4 months, lost 18# and going, but I find myself a little bored with our meals. I feel inspired again. Thank you!

    • Mel says:

      I’m glad you found me! I hope these new recipes make you excited about eating paleo/primal again. Happy cooking!

      • Michelle says:

        So in 7 hours, I’ve made everything for week one, and we, of course, had some for dinner. My partner is thrilled with the new flavors (cumin, allspice, etc.) I even managed to brine and grill “the best chicken.” Party for my taste buds! Thanks again. We’re set for the next week. Looking forward to week 2.

  73. Elyse Smith says:

    Mel, don’t mean to sound silly :/ when you bake the sweet potatoes do you peel them/chop them before you put them away or leave them whole? how long do they last cooked in the fridge? thanks xx

  74. Carrie says:

    My husband and I just started our first whole 30. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed with what to buy before we started. This grocery list and hot plates have been a life saver. I haven’t gotten bored with food options and we have an abundance of great food ready to go! Thanks for posting! This has helped make our first week of whole 30 a breeze. I love how easy this is :)

    • Congratulations on Whole30-ing! I’m really happy the info in this post was helpful. I like to cook but man! I don’t want to spend ALL my time in the kitchen. Hot Plates totally save us all the time, too. Happy cooking to you!

  75. Ellen says:

    Just wanted to say thanks so much for the blog and your cookbooks. I decided to do my first whole30 about 25 days ago (woot!) in an attempt to healthily lose weight after my second pregnancy. I’ve found your recipes to be so delicious and I’ve felt so great that I’m planning to continue eating “dino chow” for the foreseeable future. Even my husband, who hates diets and diet food, has loved the food and requests some of the recipes regularly now. Thank you thank you thank you!

    • Congratulations on 25 days of Whole30-ing! That’s awesome, and I’m so glad you that you’re feeling good. Very happy that you and your husband like the recipes, too. Happy cooking!

  76. […] I am always searching for ways to streamline life. This has led to the idea of batch cooking. Melissa Joulwan from The Clothes Make The Girl has a wonderful step by step guide to batch cooking for a whole week and according to her you can […]

  77. Wendy says:

    Is the shopping list provided just for 1 person?

  78. Kara says:

    I don’t know why it took me so long to finally do a cook up! I mostly followed this plan, but did zucchini noodles as it is impossible to find spaghetti squash in New Zealand. I also prepped a few extra things for breakfasts. Less than two hours work on a Sunday evening and I could sit down with a glass of red (not whole 30 at the mo!) and wait for the chilli to finish cooking. I let the pork cook overnight and shredded it in the morning. I probably saved at least an hour of food prep on Monday alone! You rock!!!!

  79. I just wanted to say a big, BIG thank you for this amazing cook-up! I started the Whole 30 yesterday, and spent the entire afternoon in the kitchen following your cooking plan and recipes. Chocolate chili for dinner last night, Pad Thai tonight…and a whole fridge full of goodness to get me through the week. I’m already gearing up for week 2’s cook-up next Saturday, and I’ll be posting a link to your plan on my blog on Wednesday. Here’s to making the whole world a healthier place! :)

  80. Sherri says:

    I’m new to this, so excuse my questions. Do you just pack all this stuff up and eat throughout the week? How do you determine portion size? Thank you!

  81. Sherri says:

    Thank you, Melissa. I appreciate you taking the time to respond. If I may ask, what does your food budget run for a week? And, how much time do you spend in the kitchen on a Sunday afternoon getting ready for the week? Thanks again.

    • For my husband (6’5″) and me (5’4″), we spend between $600-800/month on groceries. We usually eat out only once a week, so that’s breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks at home.

      This cookup would take me about 2-3 hours.

  82. Whitney says:

    I have just been diagnosed with PCOS. The only real way to control it is with diet and exercise. I have been feeling so overwhelmed with clean eating. I have been searching and searching for something to make this whole thing easier and I have! Thank you so much for putting this together. Now, I actually feel excited to get started!!! Thank you thank you!!!!!!

  83. Thanks for the post I love cooking and after reading your article I love cooking more then I thought but only on weekends. I am constantly looking for ways to streamline life.

  84. Lauren Krum says:

    Just wanted to say thank you!! I just followed this plan, for the most part, and prepped for week one. I’m one day in but making this food and feeling like I GET IT, and have such great resources is immensely helpful!
    I was wondering about substituting grape seed oil for olive oil for the mayo recipe/ or in general. I whipped up a batch of the olive oil mayo and like it but was just curious because i’m poor and have a giant bottle of grape seed oil. thnx!!

    • Oh, good! I’m glad this was helpful for you. Hope you enjoy the food!

      Re: grape seed oil. It’s neither Paleo nor Whole30 approved. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. The good news is that for mayo, you want inexpensive, LIGHT TASTING olive oil, not extra virgin.

  85. Roni says:

    Hey Mel.. I’m out of town by myself and reaaaaally feeling the need for this! So grateful to have an “I don’t have my book with me and I don’t even have to think about it” list! Thank you!! Know what would be super cool? A “Well Fed Retreat” in Vermont next fall. Just sayin… :)

  86. I’ve thought about doing some kind of Well Fed weekend thing: fun workouts, meditation, Well Fed menus, hikes… maybe I can make it happen!

  87. Markéta says:

    Oh noes! I couldn’t get all of those things, so I will have to improvise!
    But your guide kicked me and I am finaly determined to spend Sunday by cooking (with wine! My whole30 starts at Monday!) and I have like 10kg of meat in my fridge (I think it is bit too much.. for 2… :D)

  88. Bambi Bittner says:

    Just came upon this doing a web search. Thank you so much for the break down and great recipes. I’ve hit a point where a change Has to be made in order for me to feel healthy. Please keep the plans coming.

  89. Angela says:

    Thank you sincerely for doing all of this on top of your regular jobs and such. The fact that you’ve taken the time to create and make public these awesome recipes and wonderful, comprehensive meal plans has helped so many people and I truly appreciate it. I have done a couple Whole 30’s using your recipes and they are now family favourites! This time around, my husband really wants to get involved in helping in the kitchen so I will be using these tools to guide us through our first big day (in 5 years of marriage) of meal prep together! Im pumped..and beyond appreciative!

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