You may be thinking: “steamed broccoli…really Marla?!” Well, I wanted to share this recipe for a couple different reasons. Let me explain.
I’m sure you’ve made steamed broccoli before. It’s the typical go-to food when people first go Paleo. They tend to make chicken and broccoli a recurring meal, although there’s so much variety that can happen when you start cooking your own meals! Today I’m going to introduce some flavor to your steamed broccoli.
If you have never made steamed broccoli before, I think you’re going to love this super-simple Paleo side dish. And maybe this version will help you in a way you never knew you needed.
Butter Me Up
Many of us have tried to get kids to eat their veggies by smothering them in cheese. You may have eaten veggies that way yourself, as a kid or an adult. That’s not such a bad way to go, as long as we’re not talking about the boxed broccoli and powdered cheese that is, but there are a number of reasons that butter is a healthier alternative to cheese.
Mostly, it has to do with the fact that butter is just fat. It’s an excellent animal fat that makes veggies taste smooth and delicious, while at the same time providing a whopping helping of saturated fat. Contrary to conventional wisdom, eating saturated fat will not make you fat or clog your arteries. In fact, it’s a vital nutrient that our bodies need to function.
Though, just like everything else, sourcing does make a difference. When I say butter, I’m not talking about margarine or any other imitation butter spreads. Margarine is made using vegetable oils and those oils are definitely not healthy. Always go for grass-fed butter when you can. I only use blocks of Kerry Gold.
Fatty Fat Fat…It Doesn’t Make You Fat
In learning more about the ketogenic diet, I’ve been trying to increase my fat intake.
Every body needs nutrients. Those nutrients are used for energy, growth and bodily functions. Depending on the nutrient, they come in small and large amounts. There are three nutrients your body needs in large supply that are referred to as macronutrients (macros). Carbohydrates (sugar), lipids (fats), and proteins are those three. Each of these macronutrients provides energy in the form of calories.
If you’re familiar with tracking calories, then you’re familiar with the following breakdown:
- Carbohydrates (sugar): 4 calories per gram
- Proteins: 4 calories per gram
- Lipids (fats): 9 calories per gram
The point of keto is to reduce your carbohydrates to below 50 grams a day. In addition, as you decrease your sugar and protein, you then increase your fat consumption. By doing this, your body changes over from a sugar-burner to a fat-burner running on energy produced by your body, ketones. There’s so much more to it than that, but this is just a quick overview.
After learning what the ketogenic diet was all about, of course my first question was “how do I increase my fat?”
Well, here’s a good example of how we’ve been doing just that!
Start Your Morning Right
We’ve been starting our morning with Bulletproof Coffee for quite some time, which provides your brain and body with a boost of fat in the morning.
By starting your morning with a dose of fat and protein, rather than sugar, you avoid starting the day with an insulin spike followed by the inevitable fall and loss of energy.
Aside from breakfast, I was a little confused as to how to increase our fat. I wasn’t going to start serving bacon for breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner, and I knew there had to be something I was missing.
Enter MCT Oil
This fatty dose of unflavored coconut oil can be used in all sorts of ways. Lately I’ve been using it in place of olive oil for dressing on our salad, but this was really the first time I used it on cooked vegetables.
I loaded up the fat in this steamed broccoli dish by using salted grass-fed butter and MCT oil. Mix everything together with a sprinkle of sea salt and this dish will have you and your dining partners licking the bowl clean.
The first time I made broccoli this way, Jeff demanded another round, so it may be a good idea to have extra broccoli on hand. Just in case the same thing happens to you.