(Photo Credit: Aubrie Pick)
Danielle Walker is a 3x New York Times best-selling cookbook author, health advocate, wellness advocate and self-trained chef. After being diagnosed with an autoimmune disease at age 22 and suffering for many years, Walker found health through dietary and lifestyle changes. For more than a decade, Walker has been whipping up delicious grain-free and gluten-free recipes for all types of occasions, from comfort food to holiday favorites and kids’ meals, which has garnered her millions of devout fans worldwide. Up next, she will be releasing her fifth and biggest cookbook to date, Healthy in a Hurry, which will be released September 6. In Healthy in a Hurry, Danielle presents more than 150 paleo recipes inspired by her sunny California lifestyle and diverse cuisines from around the world, done perfectly to get food on the table fast.
1. You are a New York Times bestselling author and have published five cookbooks. How do you come up with which recipes go into your current cookbook and which ones don't?
This is always one of the hardest things to do when picking recipes for the cookbook! It usually boils down to what the overall theme of the book might be - I’m constantly creating recipes so I know that if it doesn’t make it into a cookbook, it will most definitely make it onto the blog at some point. It makes a little easier to choose when I know that eventually it will still be shared!
2. Your seasonings are amazing!! Where do you find the balance between too much or too little seasoning on foods?
I try to follow a rule of thumb that it is better to have to add than remove! You can always add more seasoning to a dish, like salt, for example. But once you add too much salt - you can’t really come back from that! Keeping that in mind and constantly tasting while I’m cooking helps me find the right balance to my dishes.
3. You were diagnosed with an auto-immune disease at age 22, for those with food allergies and other diseases, how do you go about eating foods that taste good and are also good for you?
For me, it was mainly two things…one, being open to trying new foods that worked with my new eating habits and two, learning how to cook certain ingredients that were new to me. Once I was able to cross the hurdle that was significantly adjusting the way I approached nutrition, my tastebuds followed suit and learned to appreciate eating whole and healthy foods.
4. Everyone says, "Eating healthy is expensive.” What is your strategy for eating healthy on a tight budget?
What has worked best for my home is planning meals in advance! While it might be a little tedious at first, in the long run, knowing exactly what I’m planning to make for the week helps me cut costs.
Meal planning determines what I need to shop for and keeps my grocery list to only the things I specifically need. But it also allows me to carry leftovers from one meal into the next. For example, leftover meat from one night can be incorporated into a delicious salad the next night. Planning helps eliminate waste!
5. Tough question, but what is your favorite recipe to make in your new book, "Healthy in a Hurry"?
You’re right! This is really a tough one - as an avid Disneyland fan, I think that my Pineapple Whip quickly became a household favorite! It’s a paleo rendition of the original Disney theme park dessert, Pineapple Dole Whip.
This recipe was such a summer staple for us that I even shared it as a sneak peek on my blog! We love Disneyland as a family, and it was so much fun to create a familiar flavor that we could all enjoy at home that also catered to our eating lifestyle.
6. Overall, what can readers of your book expect?
Readers of "Healthy In a Hurry" can expect a cookbook full of innovative, delicious, but most importantly, quick and easy recipes that come together with minimal fuss.
My focus for this cookbook was to have something for the person that is too busy to spend hours in the kitchen daily, but still want to enjoy a fresh, nutritious and flavor packed meal after a long day of work.
"Health In a Hurry" brings the ease of cooking healthy to your kitchen in a time saving way that every home chef, regardless of skill level, can appreciate!
7. Do you plan on making more cookbooks in the future?
Absolutely! I’m always creating new recipes and jotting down ideas on how I can help others like me enjoy food in safe and nutritious ways.
My personal journey with auto-immune disease made me aware of an entire community of people like me who want to enjoy food and their bold flavors without having to sacrifice their health or having to commit to a life of eating plain salads.
I’m looking forward to creating more delicious recipes and sharing them whether it’s in my next cookbook or published on my blog!
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