I absolutely love broccoli and one of my fave things is a homemade broccoli salad. You know, the kinda side dish that’s usually displayed on the table during the holidays or some other special occasion, and fully loaded with some not-so-healthy ingredients.
One of the main ingredients that gives it that amazing flavor is mayo…afterall, it’s the perfect base of the dressing…but if you’re conscious about what you eat, most mayos are BAD. Honestly, when I first started experimenting with my healthy lifestyle, I cut ALL MAYO from my diet. And it totally sucked too because I LOVE mayo. Probably one of my fave condiments (aside from mustard) and it mixes with just about anything.
I started playing around with making my own mayo with olive oil, but it tasted completely different and I still craved the “bad” ones. By the time I came up with a recipe I liked, I decided it was too much of a pain to make it every single time. I arrived at that same crossroad with my almond milk. Ha!
Yes, even Healthy Lifestyle Advocates look for shortcuts here and there. 😀
So…along comes the Paleo trend (that’s super popular right now!) and since SOY is forbidden that means NO junk soy-based mayo. If you read the ingredients—and I encourage you to do that—a lot mayos are soy-based.
Soy is one of the most sprayed (hello, chemicals and pesticides!) crops in the world (along with corn, wheat, and coffee) so opting organic as often as possible is critical. Certified Organic also means no GMOs, which can cause digestive issues and other related health problems. Don’t get me wrong, it’s ok to splurge and have the non-organic sometimes, but you just don’t want a daily habit of it. Overtime, it could lead to health issues.
“Your Genes May LOAD THE GUN, But Your LIFESTYLE is what Pulls the Trigger.”
While my body type does ok with soy (mostly I have it in my tamari, gluten-free soy sauce and homemade Detox Miso soup) it definitely isn’t something I have every day. There’s a lot of research linking soy to extra estrogen production and too much of that is a very bad thing—health wise and for your waistline too. Too much estrogen is what makes you “softer” and building muscle darn near impossible. Too much estrogen can lead to cancer and other diseases.
There are other dangers of too much estrogen and I encourage you to do your own exploring on it.
New research is showing that the some of the soy they studied was NOT organic and it’s highly possible the pesticides and chemicals played a huge role in the extra estrogen their test subjects produced. Based on your own feelings and research about soy is how often you should have it in your diet. It’s totally a personal choice and it does offer many health benefits that also can’t be ignored.
Now, back to the mayo. Since Paleo’ers won’t do soy, that means they need a mayo that doesn’t have soy…and from what I understand based on my own research is that canola oil isn’t ok either. And I agree, I’m not a big canola oil fan—not when there’s other options out there that are way HEALTHIER. Since canola is not an option, (the “diet” I currently follow on my healthy lifestyle journey is a cross between paleo, body type, and Mediterranean zone—all of these don’t allow canola) I am SO HAPPY that there’s avocado oil-based mayos out there now! YAY!
The two brands I love are Primal Kitchen and Chosen Foods. You can get them at wholesale prices over at my fave online healthy food shop: THRIVE MARKET. To me, they taste the best. **The flavor is NOT the same as the soy-based mayos, so there is a little tastebud adapting. But here’s the good news: when using it in a dressing—like this broccoli salad—I cannot taste the difference at all. HAPPY DANCING! This dish tastes SO MUCH like the traditional one, but it’s healthier and makes your tastebuds sing.
Is your mouth watering yet? Ha! Mine sure is.:) I’m going to walk you through all the steps of making it first, and if you want to skip over that and get right to the handy printable then just scroll on down toward the bottom.
Easy Paleo Broccoli Salad
Get your workstation setup with everything you’ll need.
In a large pot, get some water boiling and add a couple dashes of sea salt. While waiting on the water to bubble, let’s Chop up the broccoli. *Shortcut=purchase florets or broccoli that’s already chopped.
Fill a large bowl with ice water, set beside the pot for an easy and quick way to transfer the broccoli.
Once the water is boiling, throw in the stem pieces of the broccoli for 1 minute and then add the florets for another minute. Time is critical so don’t overdo it or it gets too soft (unless you like it like that). The reason I do an extra minute on the stem pieces is because I find it gives a consistent texture. The florets seem to cook a little faster.
Quickly transfer broccoli to the bowl of iced water (you can strain it or use a straining spoon like I did and scoop it over). This will stop the cooking process and cool it down. Then place broccoli on a dish towel and gently dab it dry.
Add the dried broccoli to a large mixing bowl. Then prep the other ingredients and throw them in.
Refrigerate for 30 mins to an hour before serving. Or for quicker prep, throw it in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes, then stick in fridge until you’re ready to use. Enjoy!
How do you satisfy your broccoli fix? Do you have a fave salad you add it in?
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