Spicy Cocoa Rubbed Venison Steak Lettuce Wraps

In honor of the hottest week I think central New York has ever experienced, twentysomething and paleo presents a deliciously paleo and cold dinner fit for any active and sweaty young adult – and the best part is: before it wound up in my freezer, it was romping around in the wild and eating naturally germinated plants. Thank you again to Coach Craig, Crossfit Partner-in-Crime Maria’s hunter and my new running group leader! Where he finds time to catch wild game between triathlons, training, and listening to maria gush about crossfit I just don’t know…

Spicy Cocoa Rubbed Venison Steak Lettuce Wraps:

Venison Steak (or any steak of your choosing)
5 tbsp baking cocoa
3 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp cayenne pepper
3 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp coconut/olive oil
Iceberg lettuce
Tomato, Avocado, and any other fixins you may want

Pound thawed steak to tenderize.

Mix 4 tbsp cocoa, chili, cayenne, and black pepper.

Rub steak in oil, followed by the pepper-cocoa mix.

Cover in plastic wrap and let sit in fridge for at least an hour, no more than 4 hours.

In a skillet, heat another tbsp oil and sauté steak over medium heat for about 2-2.5 minutes (to get the perfect medium rare… mmm)

Set steak to the side to rest (don’t cut! Don’t cut! Don’t cut! Those juices are like gold…)

Slice steak or cut into portions for the week and slice into smaller pieces the day you wrap.



Red White and Burger

Happy Fourth of July! Grilled Red Pepper and Onion Turkey Burgers with Tomato and Lettuce Wrapped have been waiting oh so patiently for the mid-summer holiday! I love an excuse to buy every red fruit and vegetable in the produce section.


Red White and Burger:

1.25 lb ground turkey
1 red bell pepper
2 small onions
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 egg
2 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)

Chop pepper into large chunks and grill until become slightly soft with nice black char marks.

Slice and dice onions and mix into ground turkey with egg and seasoning.

Let pepper cool, dice, and mix into ground turkey mix.

Form into patties and throw on the grill.


Serve with iceburg lettuce to wrap, onions, tomatoes, avocado and any other patriotic fixins you may fancy. Happy Independence!


Citrus Cilantro Fish Tacos

It’s about time to add more fish-based recipes, and keeping true to twentysomething fashion, we can start with more MEXICAN! The sweet potato skin mock-tortillas did it again: possibly better than traditional flour and corn tortillas. This was super easy to make despite post-WOD exhaustion too, if you’re ever looking for a last-minute-haven’t-meal-prepped paleo dinner.


Citrus Cilantro Fish Tacos

4-6 whiting fillets
1 red bell pepper
1 sweet potato
6 sprigs fresh cilantro
1 tbsp chopped garlic
2 tbsp lemon/lime juice
2 oranges
2 tbsp frank’s red hot sauce

Grill fillets and red bell pepper on the good ol’ George Foreman (or a real grill if you’re fancy) until nice sharp char marks.

Finely chop cilantro and mix with lemon/lime juice, juice from one orange and hot sauce.

Chop second orange and red pepper and sauté with garlic in pan.

Add fish to pan when orange and garlic start to carmelize and pour sauce over top.

Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Bake sweet potato (poke with fork, microwave HIGH 4 minutes, flip, HIGH 4 minutes) halve, and scoop out flesh (leaving some flesh around the skin)

Scoop fish and citrus/pepper sauce into sweet potato skins.

Garnish with extra cilantro and lime.

Chilly Mocha Protein Shake

Iced coffee, meet frozen hot chocolate. Iced coffee and frozen hot chocolate, meet protein and kale. It’s a chilly mocha double date and it’s delicious!!

Chilly Mocha Protein Shake: 2 servings @ 190 cal/ea (F 12g; C 22g; 18g)

½ avocado
1 banana
3 tbsp Hemp Protein
1 cup almond milk
2 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp instant coffee

twentysomethingandpaleo protein shake method:

Mix one recipe’s batch of protein shake every other day.
Day 1:
pour half into big-ass-water bottle and “leave room for cream” (jk there’s no cream in paleo – but seriously leave room in the water bottle)
bring to work and keep refrigerated if possible
an hour before work ends and you head to your home-box, go down to the ice machine and fill up all that cream-room with ice
shake like they taught you in zumba and get a baby ab work out
drink half
kick ass at your WOD
drink second half BEFORE you even have time to cry
Day 2:
rinse and repeat


“Spicy Caveman Roll” Paleo Sushi

Fresh and fun Friday lunch this week is a new take on a twentysomething favorite: sushi! It seems like anytime I break paleo, it’s for sushi. I just can’t get enough. (Especially during half-price Monday at the sushi bar near work and happy hour prices at all 22 fine sushi establishments in the area).


“Spicy Caveman Roll”

Nori (Japanese Seaweed paper)
¼ lb shrimp, cooked, deveined
sausage, pre-cooked
½ avocado
½ cup broccoli, finely chopped
1 tbsp sesame seeds
3 tbsp franks redhot
Steam broccoli, slice avocado.

Coat your fishies and shrimps in whatever seasoning you like! This recipe includes rolling shrimp in nutritional yeast.
Lay nori on a bamboo sushi roller (or dollar store placemat like I use)
Gently spoon steamed broccoli grains and sesame seeds over as much Nori as possible.
Place shrimp, sausage, and avocado slices.
Roll this spicy cave man up, sushi style.
Slice with the SHARPEST knife in your kitchen. Starting in the middle of the roll and working your way out.
If you have coconut aminos, I heard that’s a nice soy sauce alternative. I dip mine in more frank’s red hot… it’s the American version of soy sauce and wasabi. Here’s to America!

Bacon Egg CheesyAvo Mash Breakfast Sandwich on Paleo English Muff (1 sandwhich @ 490 cal/ea)

Breakfast sandwiches fall into the most phenomenal food category (breakfast food) but are slapped together on a roll… normally not considered a paleo practice… until this lovely blog introduced the EASIEST paleo English muffin recipe. Very twentysomething. Very paleo. Very breakfast.


Bacon Egg Breakfast with CheesyAvoMash on a Paleo English Muff (1 sandwich @ 490 cal/ea):

THE MUFF… Mix the following ingredients in the following order:
1/3 cup almond flour + 1 tbsp coconut flour + ¼ tsp salt + ¼ tsp baking soda + 1 egg + 3 tbsp water

Microwave 2 minutes (add 30 seconds if raw on top after 2 minutes)
Let cool, slice, and wait for further instruction.


THE CHEESY AVOCADO MASH… Mash the following ingredients in the following order:
¼ avocado + 1 tbsp nutritional yeast + ¼ tsp Himalayan Salt + ¼ tsp garlic powder



Step 1: Fry one or two eggs in non-stick skillet. (Over easy if you have a soul). Set to the side.
Step 2: Fry bacon in same skillet – to save water and the rainforest. Set bacon to the side.
Step 3: Slather CheesyAvoMash on one side of each Paleo English Muff.
Step 4: Place one half of muff, unslathered side down, in the bacon greasy skillet.
Step 5: Place bacon and eggs on top of muff-in-greasy-pan.
Step 6: Place second half of muff, slathered side down, on top of breakfast stack.
Step 7: Flip after side one is nice and crispy like a grilled cheese.


BOOM! I don’t know a single twentysomething who doesn’t love a nice grilled sandwich and I for one, could not deprive another Paleo twentysomethings of a bangin breakfast recipe OR a grilled sandwich. That would be cruel. Now go forth and take on the weekend like a boss, and if all fails, know you had a great paleo breakfast!

First-Day-of-Spring Veggie Flower Patch with Fresh Guac

Admittedly Pin-spired by this site, this veggie flower patch tickled my festive fancy. Happy Spring! Despite the inches of snow we’ve been getting, I decided that my co-workers need a nice edible floral arrangement to ring in the new season.

1 cucumber
4 carrots
up-cycled Styrofoam produce containers (when will they learn, those environment-hating packagers)

1/2 avocado
1/2 tomato
1 small onion
5 sprigs cilantro
1 tbsp garlic
2 tbsp lime juice

No cooking involved – only steps:

Step 1: Peel, halve, and gut your cucumber. Peel carrots and cut off the bottom third (it’s too thin)

Step 2: Slice cucumbers for the leaves. Slice two triangle cuts along length of carrot, making a “W” on top. Then slice carrots. In case you can’t tell from my knife work I: a) have super dull hand-me-down knives, b) have shamed my top chef/iron chef America/chopped idols c) am too impatient to slice better

Step 3: Feed the excess produce-waste to your pet bunny, because bunnies want to welcome spring too.

Step 4: Chop onion, cilantro, garlic, and tomato. Mix with avocado and lime juice.

Step 5: Package up, refrigerate, and get ready to make your co-workers smile like it’s mid-May.