IN THE KITCHEN WITH CARRIE FORREST
Tell us about yourself:
Carrie Forrest is the creator of the blog, Clean Eating Kitchen, where she shares gluten-free and dairy-free recipes and tips. She also hosts the podcast, Clean Eating for Women. Carrie has masters degrees in business and public health nutrition, but, more importantly, has used a real food diet to recover from and manage multiple health conditions including PCOS, chronic migraines, anxiety, autoimmune disease, and cancer.
How did you get involved in cooking?
I grew up eating mostly processed junk foods. I didn’t understand the connection between food and health until I had developed a laundry list of health issues, including Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and then thyroid cancer in the recent past. I underwent surgery to remove my thyroid and the tumor; living without a thyroid has had its own challenges. I’ve had a lot of other health struggles, too, including:
- Disordered Eating
- Chronic migraines
- Weight problems and fatigue
- Allergies and food intolerances
- Anxiety and panic attacks
Feel free to read about my journey in detail here.
I finally started to understand the connection between food and health after seeing the movie Super Size Me, the one where the guy eats McDonald’s for 30 days. I was so inspired by this movie that I went back to school to study nutrition.
I took things too far by jumping on the super-strict vegan bandwagon, thinking that this diet would be the answer to all my health problems. It took another 3 1/2 years before I ultimately decided that such a strict diet was not supportive to my mental or physical health (you can read more about the specifics of what happened here).
It took me another few years to realize that my health flourishes eating both plant and animal foods, and what I like to call a “clean eating approach.” While I still have to respect my ongoing food sensitivities, I eat lots of fruits and vegetables with “clean” sources of animal protein, without consuming dairy or gluten.
Describe your cooking style:
I like to use the highest quality proteins (from US Wellness Meats) with lots of fresh vegetables. I like easy meals that are made in the slow-cooker or pressure-cooker, and made using five or fewer ingredients.
How did you learn about grass-fed meats?
I learned about the health benefits of grass-fed meats after I transitioned away from veganism and started eating a more paleo-style diet.
What is your favorite recipe featuring grass-fed meat?
My Slow-Cooker Brisket with Root Vegetables
You’re stranded on a desert island; luckily, you’re stranded with your top 5 ingredients and one must-have kitchen tool:
Probably my high-speed blender! Making green smoothies for breakfast is one of my secret health weapons and the only way I like to eat dark leafy greens.
Best cooking secret/tip/piece of advice you’ve learned:
Don’t listen to a health guru. Learn to listen to your own body and figure out which foods work best for YOU.
What’s your favorite quote/song for culinary inspiration (if any)?
Just eat real food.
Anything else you want to share?
I have an e-cookbook with 55 gluten-free and dairy-free recipes. Clean Eating Every Day e-cookbook sales page (use code CLEANEATING for a discount): https://gumroad.com/l/cleaneatingeveryday
Enter to win our September 2018 Clean Eating Kitchen Featured Chef Prize Pack!