15 Quick & Easy Whole30 Dinners

Choo! Choo! I’m hopping on the Whole30 Train!

Next stop: Amazing, healthy, nourishing food! AND a better version of me!

I’m currently reading up on the ins and outs of the Whole30 plan with the book called It Starts With Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways. This book was written by Dallas & Melissa Hartwig, who have figured out the science around how and why this lifestyle has led to the success of thousands of people losing weight, but gaining back more than they ever imagined. Not gains in pounds, but gains in other areas of your life such as: improved sleep, energy levels, mood, self-esteem, and overall improvement (even elimination) of physical conditions, diseases, and symptoms. It’s really quite amazing reading people’s testimonies of how Whole30 was the answer for how they lowered blood pressure, got off medications, or no longer experienced migraines. These are just a few of the AMAZING benefits of Whole30 and I look forward to being able to report what changes occur within me over the course of the 30 days of following the Whole30 plan.

I highly recommend reading It Starts with Food prior to beginning the Whole30 plan. I am not a big reader of books, so I purchased the Amazon Audible version, so I can listen while driving my son to and from school or while I’m cleaning around the house.

I’m almost finished with the “book on tape” version and will begin my 30-day Whole30 journey on Monday, March 6th, and will conclude on Tuesday, April 4th.

Now onto the food…

Here are some dinner recipes I plan to cook up during my first round of Whole30. I chose 15 dinners that looked tasty and I would actually cook. Since I’m a fan of leftovers, I plan to cook enough to have at least one day of leftovers for each dinner. If there’s more left after a day, I may heat it up for lunch. I’m thrilled to share this journey with you and hope to inspire others.

So, let’s get right to it!

1. Coconut Lime Chicken

Mix the Lime with the Coconut!

I’m most looking forward to this dish, which is why I put it at number one. The rest are not in any order by any reason, but this one caught my eye, for sure. I love the flavors of lime and coconut together. It takes me to my travels to the caribbean a few years back. So, I have hopes this recipe will whisk me away to paradise, if only for a moment. A Whole30 alternative to serving this with white rice is to serve it with cauliflower rice or even mashed potatoes. I might use boneless, skinless chicken thighs, since that’s my preference. Oooo! I can hardly wait!

Coconut Lime Chicken
Coconut Lime Chicken via A Saucy Kitchen

2. Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs w/ Roasted Potatoes

Are you drooling yet?

I love using my cast iron skillet for cooking up recipes and this one is perfect! Who doesn’t love a little bit of Bacon?

Bacon Wrapped Chicken w/ Roasted Potatoes
Bacon Wrapped Chicken Thighs w/ Roasted Potatoes via Paleo Running Momma

3. Jalapeño Turkey Burgers w/ Yam Fries

Turn up the HEAT!

And not just because it’s winter. This has all the makings of a keeper recipe. Juicy turkey burger patty + avocado + jalapeño (for that heat) + yam fries! This is something I’d eat year-round.

Jalapeño Turkey Burgers
Jalapeño Turkey Burgers via The Organic Kitchen

4. Zuppa Toscana Soup

Better than Olive Garden?

We shall see! I know the ingredients and cooking method for this version of Zuppa Toscana will be better for my health compared to Olive Garden’s recipe. That’s what this Whole30 journey is about for me. Healthier choices, but still eating like a Queen!

Zuppa Toscana Soup
Zuppa Toscana Soup via 40 Aprons

5. Sheet Pan Steak & Veggies

Easy Peasy!

One pan dinners are THEEE BEST! Especially for me, when I’m on dish washing duty. The broccoli looks like it will have that nice nutty taste with the roasty-toasty-ness of this recipe. This could very well be a staple in our weekly dinner rotation. I’ll let you know in a follow up post.

Sheet Pan Steak and Veggies
Sheet Pan Steak and Veggies via Damn Delicious

6. Chipotle Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps w/Avocado Aioli

There’s a PARTY in my TUMMY!

Let’s just say, I imagine you will thank yourself after making this. This recipe uses a slower cooker, which already takes a load off of your time in the kitchen. The cool, crisp of the lettuce with the bold, smokey chipotle…squeeze a lil’ lime, slap on some avocado and it’s a Party! At least in my mind…anyone ever heard that Yo! Gabba Gabba! song: “There’s a party in my tummy! So yummy! So Yummy!” (I linked the YouTube for it…go check it out) My son used to love that show. He’s 10 now, so I can only hope that my daughter will take a liking to it as she gets a bit older because I loved their little (sometimes annoying) songs.

Chipotle Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps w/ Avocado Aioli
Chipotle Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps w/ Avocado Aioli via Fashionable Foods

7. Chicken Ratatouille

Okay, you hear the word “Ratatouille”. What’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Remy, the rat!! Am I right?!? I fell in love with that Disney-Pixar movie called Ratatouille when it came out back in 2007.  Can you believe it’s been about 10 years since that little french rodent hit the scene whipping up gourmet delicacies like it was nobody’s business? Ah, the memories! Well, this dish is not as pretty as the one from the movie, but it has all the components to make for a hearty meal.

Chicken Ratatouille
Chicken Ratatouille via Diethood

8. Grilled Salmon w/ Mango Salsa

First of all, look how beautiful the salsa just rests upon the grilled salmon!

This is a work of art in my eyes. Vibrant & colorful. I plan to use my indoor griddle/grill that I was gifted this past Christmas from my brother, Nehemiah. It’s like a 2-in-1 deal because it has interchangeable cooking plates: smooth and flat for griddling pancakes, bacon, or eggs then has grill plates on the other side for getting that “grilly-goodness” (Yes, I make up words. Don’t we all??). Much quicker than using my outdoor charcoal or gas grill during these winter months. If you’re looking for a kitchen tool that can serve multiple purposes, this is the one! And did I mention, the cook plates are DISHWASHER SAFE! I was sold!

Grilled Salmon Mango Salsa
Grilled Salmon w/ Mango Salsa via Creme de la Crumb

9. Cauliflower Fried Rice

Here’s a recipe hope my son will love. Fingers-crossed!

He’s a huge fan of fried rice. I wonder if he’ll know the difference? I’ll have to report back to you on a follow-up post. I like to get my riced cauliflower from Trader Joe’s. So far, I’ve only sautéed riced cauliflower with a bit of evoo, so making more of a main dish with it is what I’m looking forward to.

Cauliflower Fried Rice
Cauliflower Fried Rice via Little Bits of

10. Chicken Cacciatore

Oh, Chicken Cacciatore! How I’ve missed you so!

My mother used to make this for our family when I was a child and it’s one of those dishes I feel nostalgic about. It was one the first meals I requested my mom to make when I came back home during my first break in college of my freshman year. Because you can only eat so much pizza and chicken strips. And of course, she obliged. The chicken becomes so tender and juicy while giving you the rustic flavors of tomatoes, mushrooms and capers.

Whole30 Chicken Cacciatore
Chicken Cacciatore via Farmstead Chic

11. Lemon Butter Chicken

I just love the combo of Lemon and Rosemary.

I already make a recipe very similar to this. Add in the fact that it’s all over chicken thighs and my mouth begins to water! Remember to use Ghee (clarified butter) in place of actual butter. Yummy and so classic.

Lemon Butter Chicken Whole30
Lemon Butter Chicken via Jay’s Baking Me Crazy


12. Spaghetti Squash w/ Pesto and Tomatoes

“If you need a fix!” (remember that song by the R&B group, Blackstreet?)

This recipe will give me the much needed “spaghetti” fix that I know will come over me. The pesto in this sounds like a winner! Flavorful!

Spaghetti Squash w/ Pesto and Tomatoes
Spaghetti Squash w/ Pesto and Tomatoes via A Family Feast

13. Italian Meatballs w/ Marinara Sauce & Zucchini Noodles 

Oodles of Zoodles!

For this recipe you’ll want to get a Spiralizer to get those perfect noodle-like strips. I’ve often heard people call these “Zoodles”. Zucchini + Noodle shape = Zoodles. Now that’s math I fully understand!

Here’s a great one from Amazon:

This veggie machine can shred, chip, slice, and most importantly for this recipe, spiral all sorts of veggies: Zucchini, Carrots, Potatoes and more!

Italian Meatballs w/ Marinara Sauce
Italian Meatballs w/ Marinara Sauce & Zucchini Noodles via Noshtastic

14. Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings


A second recipe from Jay’s Baking Me Crazy and for good reason: I. LOVE. CHICKEN. WINGS. Let me be open with you…I could eat wings everyday. And if you have to know, I’m #TeamFlats! I’m not the biggest fan of the Drumsticks, but I’ll eat those too.

Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings Whole30
Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings via Jay’s Baking me Crazy

15. Rosemary Braised Short Ribs

Now this would be soooo good to have for dinner on a lazy Sunday, right?

I can already smell the aroma filling the air from my Lodge Dutch Oven (which mine is purple! My favorite color). One important note is to use beef broth in place of red wine, which is not Whole30 approved.

Rosemary Braised Short Ribs Whole30
Rosemary Braised Short Ribs via My Natural Family


Well, that wraps up my list of compiled Quick & Easy Whole30 Dinners. I can’t wait to get started on Monday! Now, I know dinner isn’t the only meal of the day, so I plan to find some good Breakfast, Lunch AND Dessert recipes that get the Whole30 stamp of approval. I recently did a blog post a dessert that would work during Whole30: Guilt-free “Ice Cream” Two Ways. It would be the Banana-Blueberry recipe. Which I still have a bit left in the freezer…so on that note: I’ll check back with you all later!

Before you go, comment below which recipes you like from the list AND I’d love if you could share if you’ve done Whole30 or thought about starting.

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  1. This list is making me hungry! Thanks for sharing my coconut lime chicken! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do! Also – good luck on your Whole30!

    • happilyeverhauser@gmail.com

      It’s one of those things where I had to focus on what I can have and surprisingly, I’m doing good!

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