Review: Danielle Walker’s Celebrations Cookbook

I have been a HUGE fan of all things Danielle Walker from Against All Grain for a few years.  Her journey to good health through food is SO inspiring.  And through this journey she has managed to create some pretty amazing recipes through her blog and cookbooks Against all Grain and Meals Made Simple.  You can imagine my excitement when I learned she was releasing a THIRD cookbook.  Celebrations launches on September 27th!  You can pre-order it now (for an INCREDIBLE deal) here. I was lucky enough to be on her launch team and received the book early to test out the recipes and share my thoughts.  A week into the book and I am in LOVE.  The book takes you through a year of Celebrations (think NYE, Valentine’s Day, Easter, etc.) and shares paleo recipes that you may have previously missed because of dietary restrictions.

The book itself:

This book is hard cover and LAYS FLAT!!! It may sound like a silly thing, but most of my favorite paleo books (including Danielle’s other two books) are all the same style and always want to fold back up on you. It is a constant battle to find a kitchen utensil to keep it held open…but not this book! ūüôā
As with Danielle’s other books, her personal story and tidbits in the beginning of the book are amazing.  She shares her journey and reasons for writing the book.  She also shares so many helpful cooking tips that she has learned through her paleo expertise, along with ingredient and cooking tool help!

The PICTURES. Oh the pictures.  They are absolutely stunning.  I almost want to use this as a coffee table book, but I know that it will mostly be in my kitchen and will inevitably acquire the spills and stains that my other Danielle Walker books have gained throughout the years ūüėČ

The food:

Danielle has really outdone herself with this book.  So far I have tried the Paleo “Corn” Bread, Peach Cobbler and Grilled Blackened Salmon with Stone Fruit Salsa.  I have more on the menu for this week so I will keep you posted.

Paleo “Corn” Bread – For a paleo recipe, or ANY recipe, this was SO easy to make. The taste is so similar to corn bread, I couldn’t believe it.  I initially made it with a paleo chili.  The leftovers keep up to a week tightly wrapped in the fridge, so I also used it for a base for paleo sloppy joes and an egg scramble.  The possibilities are really endless!

Peach Cobbler – DIVINE! The combination of the sweet peaches covered in the cakey cobbler topping was delicious.  I had to divide it up into containers and give it away to family so I wouldn’t eat it all myself.

Grilled Blackened Salmon with Stone Fruit Salsa – Confession: I am not a huge fish fan.  However, I know salmon is SO good for you, and so I have really tried to embrace it and try cooking it more often.  And this recipe created the best I have ever had.  The blackening rub is the perfect combination of spices to give excellent flavor without being overpowering.  The stone fruit salsa adds the perfect sweet and spicy topping (think peaches + jalapenos) to complement the salmon.  We served it with roasted asparagus and I ate my entire filet.  This coming from a non-Salmon believer!



Cookbooks I Love

The following are cookbooks that I cook from all. the. time. and cannot imagine #paleo and #glutenfree life without.

Danielle Walker – Against All Grain

I discovered Danielle’s first book – Against All Grain – a few years ago. It is a great compilation of paleo basics and favorites. ¬†Danielle was able to take control of her health through a paleo lifestyle. ¬†Her story is inspiring and her food is AMAZING. ¬†Her second book – Meals Made Simple – is my go-to for many of our favorite dinners. ¬†This book has meal plans ¬†which are a great way to ease in to the paleo lifestyle.

**Update** РDanielle is launching her THIRD book РCelebrations Cookbook Рon September 27th.  I am lucky enough to be on the launch team and received the book early to try out recipes and share my thoughts with you all.  So far, I am blown away by how amazing the book is.  It is absolutely GORGEOUS and the recipes are OUT. OF. THIS. WORLD.  My review for this book can be found here.

I have always enjoyed Julie’s blog and Instagram @Paleomg. ¬†I received her book – Julie Bauer’s Paleo Cookbook¬†as a Christmas gift and it has been a favorite! ¬†My two favorite recipes in here are her Jalapeno Popper Chicken Chili and her Buffallo Chicken Casserole. ¬†YUM!


Help! I have to go Gluten Free…..

Since going gluten free five years ago,  I often get calls/emails/texts from family and friends asking for advice because someone they known was just diagnosed with Celiacs or gluten intolerance.  I love love love helping new gluten free friends. Below is a compilation of some of my favorite products and stores.  Feel free to comment with any specific questions or additions to the list!


  • Trader Joes
  • Outpost Natural Foods
  • Costco Whole Foods
  • Walmart (Have great prices on staples)
  • Target
  • ALDI (Great job of marking¬†Gluten Free for staples)
  • Big Lots (often have surplus of Bob’s Red Mill Mixes, Sam Mills pasta and granola bars, and other gf finds)


  • Quick Frozen Fixes: Perdue Gluten free frozen chicken tenders (Target, Walmart), EVOL Burrito Bowls
  • Bread/Bagels: Udi’s, Canyon Bakehouse,
  • Cereal: CHEX, CHEX, CHEX (did I mention Chex?!), also Gluten Free Rice Krispies, Udi’s Granola
  • Trader Joes: ¬†personal frozen pizza, penne & spaghetti noodles ($1.39 a pack, corn or brown rice), frozen pancakes and waffles, boxed & frozen mac n cheese, gluten free “oreos”, good selection of non-frozen Udi’s, dairy free cream cheese
  • Costco: Large bags of Quinoa, Large loaves of frozen Udi’s, gluten free baking mix and flour blends, Crunchmaster Crackers

Adult Beverages

(I¬†love¬†wine, but sometimes… ¬†I am in the mood for a good gluten free beer or cider)

  • Best Beer: Estrella Damm Daura – hands down, the¬†best¬†gluten free brew. ¬†I always do a double take after my first sip that I am drinking the right beer!**
  • Runner Up: Lakefront Brewery New Grist – a hometown brew. ¬†I highly recommend their brewery tour, for $7 you get a few gf brews
  • Hard to find, but oh so good: Glutenberg Beers – they have blonde ales, red lagers, etc. etc. ¬†Great stuff, but impossible to find!
  • Best Cider: Crispin Browns Lane (tall green can) – ¬†my favorite cider, so crisp & dry
  • Runners Up: ¬†Other Crispins, Stella Cidre, Angry Orchard Johnny Appleseed, Smith & Forge
  • My Least Favorite: Woodchuck Cider, Strong Bow and Cider Boys – *too* sweet for this gal

**This is a gluten removed beer, so there is some controversy about whether it is safe for celiacs. ¬†However, it is less than 3 ppm for gluten and I have never reacted poorly to it. ¬†If you are concerned, talk with your doctor or just drink Lakefront ūüôā


A resource that has been so so helpful to me is  Sarah @ Celiac in the City (also a Milwaukee gal!)