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Paleo Update: The Refrigerator

By September 14, 2011December 16th, 2014Kitchen


Even though we’re still pretty well in the infancy of our Paleo lifestyle (yes “lifestyle,” as our Crossfit instructor most emphatically insists it is not a diet — and we agree), a great deal of change has already gone on around our house. Big and small changes. Little things like we no longer have snacks stowed between our books in the loft where we work at night, I’m not downing shots of chocolate syrup when I’m “feeding” the pets, and taco chips no longer constitute a dinner side. Surprisingly though, our fridge and pantry have undergone the most visible transition, and not in the way we thought.

They are completely filled to the brim with food.

It’s funny that in the absence of things like potato chips or crackers, we gained roughly 15 more ingredients for things that we are cooking or preparing from scratch. When we went grocery shopping last night, I couldn’t help but take pictures of the fridge after I managed to Tetris-style cram everything into it. (Homeowner side note: I can’t wait to buy a new refrigerator!)

So without further adieu, a little tour of our vittles…


On the top we have most of our beverages and some of the veggie overflow. You can see milk, orange juice, some Perrier for Neil’s SoCal Margaritas (I still need to make him link that recipe), and two bunches of asparagus and a spaghetti squash that I talked Neil into trying (he’s not normally a fan). You can also see our oils and vinaigrettes for salad, and that bag back there is a 6-pack of IPA we owe someone for watching the cats.

The second row is seemingly all eggs and a random 5 Hour Energy leftover from our drive back from Minnesota. There’s also a huge container of jalapeño peppers back there somewhere that Neil chops into everything. He likes the flavor “hot.”


The third shelf is all meat. We have organic chicken of various cuts and some pork steak, then some sausage from Minnesota, and behind that are leftovers and our random assortment of homemade sauces we’ve made for stir fries. There’s also a random bottle of champagne?

The fourth shelf is more fruit and vegetable overflow, as well as any bread, our tortillas and nut butters (ours and Clive’s).


And finally, three FULL drawers of fruits and veggies. Neil’s mom brought us a bunch of goodies this past weekend so we currently have eggplant, okra, fresh garden tomatoes and herbs. We also have celery carrots, oranges, peaches, tons of microgreens and spinach. We’re trying to source as many things organically and in bulk as possible, so if you have any sources for such items online or here in Columbia, we’d love your help!

The pantry is going to end up being a whole separate post once I clean it out and organize it. At this point, we have reasonable fear that Clive might fall in and never be seen again.


We’ve been following the “ideal” Paleo lifestyle at about 98% efficiency for about three weeks now. I say ideal because although there are somewhat clear principles about what to or to not eat, following Paleo seems to be more about listening to your body and accommodating its needs as closely within the framework as possible.

Although Neil has been pretty spot on with the principles, I’ve had to make a few adjustments to keep my energy up and from feeling sick. For instance, I eat beans because I still don’t like to eat a lot of meat. I also eat whole grain toast or tortillas here and there because I still like to run and need the extra boost.


Aside from those adjustments, I’m happy to report that we’re doing great with it. I know it’s probably a little unfair to act as if we’ve made some huge change when really we haven’t. We ate healthy before, and are now just more conscious about the overall content of our meals (sugar/processed ingredients/bread). I’m still completely mind-boggled at how few tummy troubles I’m now having, and how different I look now that I don’t feel completely bloated all the time. We’ve made some fitness routine changes as well, but that’s for our next update.

For now, here is dinner from last night:


I’ve been eating my food in cups lately. I don’t know if its a fall thing or I like the look of how full the cup looks relative to the huge bowls we normally use, but I dig it.



4-6 cups mixed vegetables (last night it was broccoli, carrots and snow peas
2 cups shrimp, peeled and deveined
2-3 tablespoons oil (your fav oil)
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
3-4 cloves of garlic
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
1-2 tablespoons of rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons five-spice powder
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
Sriracha sauce (optional)


  1. In a large skillet or wok, addd 2 tablespoons oil and minced garlic. Sauteé until garlic it softens (be careful to not burn the garlic as it will make it bitter).
  2. Add shrimp and approximately 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Cook for 1-3 minutes, and remove immediately and set aside before done completely through. Take care not to overcook.
  3. Stir vegetables into wok with remaining tablespoon of oil. Stir fry until they begin to cook through.
  4. Add remaining soy sauce, lemon juice, white pepper, five-spice powder, rice wine vinegar, honey, and mix in well.
  5. Add your shrimp and stir fry with the vegetables until everything is hot and shrimp are warm.
  6. Serve with salt and pepper to taste, and add sriracha sauce for a bit of a extra kick!

Easy, delicious and fresh!

What’s currently in your refrigerator?


  • Rachel says:

    I’ve been hearing a lot about Paleo lately. I don’t think I could go full fledged Paleo, but definately removing a lot of the processed foods and junk would be great. Seriously considering changing the way I shop and prepare my food. Great post!

    • Jessica says:

      I definitely recommend doing it stages. Had I done this a few years ago, it would have been a guaranteed failed venture, but after giving up a lot of snacks and snacky-type eating and boxed/frozen meals, it was pretty easy. Paleo itself isn’t all that limiting if you use gluten-free flours, limited sugar and alternative dairy products.

  • This is great. Richard started kind-of-Paleo and I’m vegan, so our fridge is interesting. I’m sending him this link.. maybe he’ll get some inspiration!

    • Jessica says:

      Haha, well we’re not totally there yet, but if he wants some great Paleo/Primal blogs, I have a bunch I’m sure he’d love reading (they are all written by guys). I feel like our meals are either Paleo or Paleo AND vegan, weird combo huh?

  • Doretha says:

    Whoa! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a entirely different subject but it has
    pretty much the same layout and design. Wonderful choice
    of colors!