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Make it Paleo: Over 200 Grain Free Recipes For Any Occasion Paperback – October 20, 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 412 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Hayley Mason, a high definition makeup artist trained in Hollywood, never thought she would be applying her styling talents to grass fed beef and grain free desserts rather than the eyes and cheek bones of movie stars. In just over a year, Hayley has become one of the most acclaimed culinary forces driving the grain free cooking movement. Her practical, efficient and methodical cooking style in Make it Paleo shows that delicious grain-free eating can be easily attained by anyone and leave you feeling as if nothing is missing from your plate. Her holistic approach to health, wellness and nutrition is a common thread that weaves its way through every recipe in Make it Paleo.

Bill Staley, a landscape architect and seasoned artist, brings his wealth of creative talents to the table in Make it Paleo. Drawing upon nearly a decade of experience in graphic design, photography, and various other artistic pursuits, Bill now brings his eye for aesthetics to the kitchen. His keen sense of photo composition and expertise with the software and technology required to record each dish are both immeasurable and integral to his role in creating Make it Paleo and The Food Lovers Primal Palate.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Victory Belt Publishing; 1 edition (October 20, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1936608863
  • ISBN-13: 978-1936608867
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1.3 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (412 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #41,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Our family has been lucky enough to gain access to all of the recently published Paleo books. I was expecting this one to be more of a straight-up recipe book, but it's so much more! It's a practical application book for living the lifestyle. With tools, ingredient explanation, menus for holidays, and everything in between - this is all you need to get started. Bill & Hayley are straight forward and relaxed about the entire approach and it makes for an easy and entertaining read.

And then, the recipes. They're the BEST Paleo or Primal recipes we've tried, and as bloggers ourselves we've tried tons. Every single one is simple, elegant and brings out the style of standard diet favorites like Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa) and Giada DeLorentis. The photos are unbelievably appetizing. As a gift to any friend or family member, they'd never even know they were missing grains!

The best part about the book for us, though, is knowing that a pair of people with talent by the buckets made this gorgeous masterpiece. This food, the photography, the recipes, the simple, detailed, and thoughtful layout are all better than most of the cookbooks that we have on our shelves. And we're including Julia Child and Alton Brown in that statement. A creative, kind, fun and humble couple put the love that they have for each other into this project they did together and the result was food made of love. Entirely. It's their photography, their food styling, their book design, their recipes. They've shown you who they are with this book, and what they are is amazing.

If you're worried your food won't look or taste as good as those in the books (common in our experience with people who don't professionally write recipes), you needn't worry.
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It looks like I am in the minority here, but this cookbook was just not for me. The book is beautiful and you can tell it is passionately written. However, I think their target audience is a young, relatively affluent couple like themselves with quite a bit of leisure time and obviously a good outdoor cooking space. I am the exact opposite. I am a busy working mom with a picky toddler who lives in a condo and therefore isn't allowed to grill. I don't have the time, budget space, or equipment to make a lot of these recipes. That being said, the recipes look delicious and would be great for entertaining especially. Maybe someday if I am retired, have more time and money, and own a REAL house that allows me to cook outside, I will repurchase "Make It Paleo." Until then, I am going to stick with Sarah Fragoso's books, which are much more family-friendly and better tailored to my personal situation.
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One of my biggest pet peeves is when a cookbook for a specific way of eating shows you how to make things that were never OFF the diet in the first place!

For example, in a gluten-free cookbook, it's kind of annoying to see recipes for vegetables with rice, because DUH, the whole reason you're buying a GF cookbook in the first place is that you are sick of eating vegetables with rice for every meal. What we really want to know is how to make things that usually contain gluten in a gluten-free way.

This paleo cookbook hits on that same annoying trait. While it's great to have recipes for things like buffalo wings, grilled salmon, and omelets, those are things that I figured out were paleo long ago, and really didn't need help with, as all of my old, non-paleo cookbooks have great recipes for those things. Here are a few of the "duh" recipes included in the book:

Bacon and eggs (page 48)
Frittata (page 52)
Kitchen sink omelet (page 56)
Veggie scramble (page 60)
French omelet (page 76 it's "different" because it is fried in butter and has herbs?)
Breakfast sausages (page 78)
Guacamole (page 88 just uses a regular guac recipe and omits the sour cream)
Salsa (page 90)
Pan-seared artichoke hearts (page 102 seriously, I can grill a vegetable, people)
Deviled eggs (page 104)
Sauteed calamari (page 106 saute calamari with seasonings)
Bacon-wrapped scallops (page 108 I only have six other cookbooks with this recipe)
Shrimp cocktail (page 112)
Buffalo wings (page 118)
Grilled clams with garlic butter (page 120 I can melt garlic and butter and put it over a clam without a recipe)
Skirt steak with chive butter (page 128 it's steak! With a pat of chive butter on top!
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I've been a fan of the authors' blog for a while, and was very excited to hear they were coming out with a cookbook. Unfortunately I'm pretty disappointed in this book and I wouldn't recommend it over simply going to their site for recipes.

Like several other reviewers I didn't find anything unique about most of these recipes, and most of them I already have in dozens of other cookbooks I own. Grilled chicken breast (really?), grilled turkey drumsticks, tomato soup, balsamic vinaigrette, ratatouille, Chicken and 40 cloves, shrimp scampi, baba ghanoush, roasted broccoli (and a separate recipe for roasted BABY broccoli!) and sweet potato fries? As far as I can tell, there's nothing inherently un-Paleo about these things as they are traditionally made, and Bill and Haley don't really offer a novel spin on any of them. As another reviewer mentioned, there are maybe half a dozen truly interesting recipes. Along the same vein, several recipes are clearly derived from other Paleo-friendly sources (compare the chocolate frosting recipe with the one from Elana's Pantry). This reinforces my take that there's little new here...

One of my other beefs with the book is that it doesn't really have a culinary point of view. Yeah, I know it's "Paleo," but there's nothing other than that to tie the recipes together. It's like I yanked random pages from each of my cookbooks and decided to "write" a cookbook by binding them together. While the photography and layout are beautiful, it reads like they just crammed everything the know how to cook into one book. It makes for an unwieldy tome.

That said, if you're an inexperienced cook, or really need help in identifying what "Paleo" is, then maybe this could be useful. But if you know anything about cooking, or own any other cookbook, you might want to pass this one by.
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