When looking for dishes that follow the concept of the Paleo diet, most wouldn’t think to check out Chinese dishes. That’s because many Chinese-based recipes use a lot of oil, which is something that the Paleo diet is strictly against.
Perhaps the most difficult aspect of the Paleo diet is figuring out what you can and can’t eat. It is very specific, and it’s sometimes tough to find a meal that meets all of the diet’s requirements. With a little bit of research and substitutions, however, there are Chinese dishes that follow the Paleo diet. Here are three of them.
Paleo Kung Pao Chicken
1 pound of boneless and skinless chicken thighs
2 tbsp. of coconut vinegar
2 tbsp. of coconut aminos
2 tbsp. of Sriracha sauce
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1/4 cup of water chestnuts, chopped
1/4 cup of raw cashews, chopped
1 tbsp. of arrowroot starch dissolved in 1 tbsp. of water
4 stalks of green onions, sliced
1. Cut the chicken into small pieces.
2. Heat a pan. Pour in oil, and cook the chicken until lightly browned.
3. In a small bowl, mix together coconut vinegar, aminos, Sriracha, garlic, chestnuts, cashews, and arrowroot starch.
4. Add the sauce to the cooked chicken and mix until all the meat is coated evenly.
5. Garnish with green onions.
Paleo Beef with Broccoli
1 pound of beef sirloin, cut into thin slices
1 whole broccoli, cut into florets
5 Tbsp. coconut aminos
1½ Tbsp. sesame oil
¼ cup beef broth
1 teaspoon arrowroot powder
3 Tbsp. coconut oil
1 tsp of fish sauce
1 teaspoon dried ginger
1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
2 tbsp. of water
1. Make the marinade by mixing coconut aminos, fish sauce, sesame oil, ginger, and garlic.
2. Add the beef and marinate for about 1 hour.
3. Heat a pan. Add in coconut oil and cook the sirloin for about 5 minutes.
4. Remove the meat and set aside. Add more oil if the pan is dry.
5. Cook the broccoli in the pan for about 1 minute.
6. Add the water and cover the pan for 3 minutes.
7. Return the beef into the pan and mix.
8. Garnish with sesame seeds.
Paleo Chinese Salad
2 cooked chicken breasts, diced
3 cups of lettuce, chopped
1/3 cup of carrots, julienned
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup of almonds, sliced
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
Sesame seeds, optional
3 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp. of orange juice
2 tsp. of coconut aminos
1 tsp. of sesame oil
1 tbsp. of honey
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 tsp. of freshly grated ginger
Sesame seeds, optional
1. Mix the ingredients for the vinaigrette in a small bowl. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, add in all the main ingredients.
3. Pour the vinaigrette on top of the salad and gently toss.
4. Garnish with sesame seeds
Chinese cuisine is flexible, allowing itself to be reinvented for other purposes. The culture itself reaches far and wide, and the Paleo diet is no exception.
The influence of the Chinese culture far exceeds food, actually. Apart from its mainland, it continues to influence pop culture in other countries as well. Take for example culinary-based Japanese animations. Japan created an anime called “Cooking Master Boy” where the protagonist is a Chinese chef. In the game Cooking Mama — one of the most popular titles in the U.S. — the game introduces a lot of yummy Chinese dishes. Even non-cooking games show a lot of love for Chinese culture. In many online games such as 88 Fortunes, Chinese symbols and icons were obviously used in background to the game. Perhaps it’s because the culture has existed for thousands of years that other countries subconsciously use its themes to appeal to the mainstream consumer. Why? Because most find Chinese culture utterly fascinating.
There you have it! Three amazing Paleo Chinese dishes. Remember these recipes whenever you’re craving for Chinese food. For other recipes, feel free to browse PaleoForever!