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I’ve been considering moving to a low carb paleo diet. It’s a lot stricter than the standard low carb high fat diet.
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To move to a paleo diet, I’d have to give up dairy. That would be the biggest hurdle for me. I love ice cream and cheese way too much.
The other thing that would have to change is the sweeteners I use. To be paleo, food can’t be processed. That means I’d pretty much have to give up all low carb sweeteners except for dried stevia leaves.
I think I could give up the sweets and get used to using a green sweetener. But, I’d need to find a good substitute for cheese. There are some recipes that make a cheese substitute from nuts like walnuts. I do love nuts so I’ll have to experiment with it.
Speaking of nuts, I made this Paleo friendly cranberry walnut chicken salad with California Walnuts. Instead of mayonnaise, I used avocados to hold the salad together. I also used unsweetened cranberries as I prefer to eat dried cranberries without sweetener.
I slow cooked four chicken breasts to use in this recipe. Slow cooking makes the meat very tender and juicy. The meat was seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic powder and then cooked on low in the crock pot with a little bit of water. Once the meat cooled, I diced it up after removing the skin and bones.
California walnuts are a good source of plant-based omega-3 fat (alpha-linolenic acid or ALA). And, they are the only nut to provide a significant source of the essential nutrient.
Walnuts are also a good source of protein and fiber. Each ounce of walnuts has about 4 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber. So, you can feel good about eating them as part of a healthy diet. I also think they taste great.
You’ll get a good dose of nutrition from this paleo-friendly low carb cranberry walnut chicken salad. And, it’s made with whole food ingredients.
The mashed avocados are a perfect substitute for mayonnaise in the salad. And, using them adds another delicious fat into the mix.
I enjoyed eating this chicken salad served on lettuce wraps. It’s also something that can be used on top of a garden salad.
The cranberries add a nice touch of color. I like to eat unsweetened dried cranberries. You can also make your own sweetened dried cranberries using stevia. I have a recipe for homemade sweetened dried cranberries here.
If you’d like some other great recipes using walnuts, you can find a terrific collection on the California Walnuts website. You’ll find plenty of dairy-free, gluten-free, and kid-friendly recipes there!
Low Carb Paleo Cranberry Walnut Chicken Salad
Cranberry Walnut Chicken Salad without Mayonnaise
- 4 cooked chicken breast halves
- 2 stalks celery chopped
- 1/2 cup unsweetened dried cranberries or use homemade
- 1/2 cup California walnuts chopped
- 2 avocados
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
Dice up cooked chicken breast.
Mix together chicken, celery, cranberries, and walnuts in a large bowl.
In separate small bowl, mash avocados with lemon juice.
Stir avocado mixture into chicken mix. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
To make your own dried cranberries, see this post.
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