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Health Benefits of Pomegranate

The fruit that shines among others because of its jewel-like brilliance and rich ruby color. Pomegranate is more than just what you see. Pomegranate is filled with delicious seeds that can be eaten raw or juiced plus it is also packed with vitamins and minerals to re-energize your health!

Antioxidants

Pomegranate contains two powerful antioxidants: Punicalagins (juice and peel) and Punicic Acid (seed oil). Both of these antioxidants help protect your body against free radicals and are responsible for the overall health benefits of Pomegranate.

Anti-inflammatory

The high-level content of punicalagin makes pomegranate a powerful fruit that drives inflammation down and other diseases such as arthritis, cancer, and diabetes.

Prevents Blood clot

There are two types of a blood clot, the good one which helps your injury recover fast and the other one is fatal because it can clog your arteries, heart, and any parts of your body.

Pro Oxygen

By fighting off free radicals, bad cholesterol, and blood clots, the antioxidant in pomegranate regulates the flow of your blood thus enhancing the level of oxygen in your body.

Avocado Pomegranate Salad (AIP/Paleo/Refined Sugar-Free)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup dino kale cut into 1/4 inch strips
  • 4 small ripened avocados, diced
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 cup cucumber, chopped
  • 1.5 tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped

Dressing:

  • Juice of a lemon
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil
  • 1/2 tsp pink salt
  • 1 tsp honey

Instructions:

  1. Whisk dressing ingredients together, set aside.
  2. Add all other ingredients to a large bowl. Pour dressing over and toss.
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Paleo Chocolate Chip Cookies

Who doesn’t love a good, gooey chocolate chip cookie? This is one of my favorite recipes when you want to satisfy your sweet tooth but also keep it paleo – Enjoy!

Dr Z

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the almond flour, coconut flour, flaxseed meal, baking soda, arrowroot powder.
  3. In a small saucepan melt coconut oil.
  4. In a medium bowl add the coconut oil, honey, vanilla extract, almond extract, sea salt, and egg and blend until thoroughly incorporated.
  5. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry.
  6. Stir in the chocolate chips until combined.
  7. Use olive oil to grease the baking sheet.
  8. Drop a spoonful of dough onto the baking sheet. They should measure approximately 2” across and about 1/4” thick.
  9. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
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Black Eyes Peas Recipe

Black eyes peas usually only receive acclaim during New Year’s for luck and prosperity but these legumes can be eaten all year long! Here’s my take on a healthy year long recipe that is also friendly for those doing my detox program.

Healthy Black Eyed Peas

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups water or organic chicken bone broth
  • 1 Tbs olive oil or butter
  • 1 red onion diced
  • 3 ribs celery diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 1 pound black eyed peas – dry
  • 14 oz diced organic tomatoes – canned (get fancy and use the fire roasted ones 😉
  • 1 tsp basil – dried
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Rinse black eyed peas and remove any debris. Place in a bowl and soak at least 8 hours or overnight.
  2. Drain black eyed peas from the soaking liquid and give them a quick rinse under cold water.
  3. In a large stock pot add organic broth and bring to a boil.
  4. Heat a medium pan with olive oil or butter. 
  5. Add onion, celery, and garlic and cook until slightly tender.
  6. Add onion mixture, drained black eyed peas, red bell pepper, basil and tomatoes (undrained) to the pot and simmer 50-60 minutes or until black eyed peas are tender.
  7. Salt and pepper to taste

** If you want an easy button to this recipe you can use already rehydrated black eyed peas and cook/simmer time will only be 20-30 minutes! **

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7 Foods To Boost Your Immune System

The flu season has arrived but have you ever wondered why there are people who can withstand an infection while some co-workers or members in the house are coughing and blowing their noses? The power lies inside the body and more specifically in the Immune System. A change in your routine such as exercising and sleeping 8 hours a day can make a huge difference in improving your immune system but one of the important items to check out is your diet. In today’s post, I listed my top 7 foods that will strengthen your body’s defense against infections and diseases.

Green Tea

Our body naturally produces antioxidants, but sometimes, the amount of free radicals is just too much to handle. The power of tea lies in its abundance in antioxidant which protects your body from free radical damages.

Red Peppers

Sweet and spicy, red peppers are the real deal when it comes to flavors. This vegetable is also oozing with nutrients that can kick start your immune systems such as Vitamin A. Vitamin C, Vitamin K, and an antioxidant called phytochemicals.

Citrus

Bring in the zing because the citrus is here to represent! Citrus is well known in the community to be the best source of Vitamin C whether it would be oranges, lemons, pomelos, grapefruits, and limes. 

Oysters

Oysters contain 3 nutrients which are key factors in supporting your immune system. First is Selenium which is an antioxidant and it activates the prostaglandins which decrease inflammation and regulates blood pressure.  Second is Zinc and it fortifies your immune system response by supporting white blood cells to reproduce swiftly. Last is the Omega-13 fats which minimize inflammatory reactions and a prime factor in creating cell walls.

Garlic

This ingredient is a kitchen staple known for its ability to ward off spirits and vampires during the old age, but the gift of garlic is in the compound called allicin which enhances the response of the white blood cells to fight off diseases.

Ginger

Ginger is filled with lots of immune booster goodness and it is also an antibacterial which is why it made it on our top list. It contains gingerol and it is responsible for relaxing the blood vessels.

Turmeric

Spice up your immune system by adding turmeric to your diet especially when you are stressed or during flu season. Turmeric increases the immunomodulating capacity of your body which intensifies your immune system.

Oysters Rockefeller

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp Parsley
  • 1/2 Shallot, minced
  • 12 Oysters
  • 2 1/2 cup Spinach, chopped
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper

Directions:

  1.  Clean oysters with a stiff-bristle brush under cold water. Shuck oysters.
  2. Pour a thin layer of kosher salt on a baking sheet. Place oysters on a salted baking sheet and preheat oven to 400°F.
  3. Heat olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat then Sauté garlic and shallot until tender.
  4. Add the spinach, parsley, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Continue to sauté until the spinach is wilted.
  5. Remove spinach topping from heat and allow it to cool.
  6. Top each oyster with the spinach mixture.
  7. Bake at 400°F for 20 minutes, or until the topping is lightly toasted and the oysters have started to curl.

Adapted from: https://www.primalpalate.com/paleo-recipe/oysters-rockefeller/

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Puppy Paw Print Ornaments – DIY

It’s that time of year again where we desire to purchase (or create) fun and meaningful gifts for family, friends and co-workers.  This year get your fur babies involved with my DIY Ornaments. 

This is a super easy and fun project that even the kids can take part in creating!

I hope you enjoy this one!

XOXO

Dr Stephanie and Brie Cheese Nicole

Puppy Paw Print Ornaments

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Parchment paper or aluminum foil
  • Straw/pen for punching a hole

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 200 degrees
  • Mix the salt, flour, and water in a bowl until it becomes firm
  • Knead the dough for 30 seconds
  • Cut out individual circles with a round cookie cutter or drinking glass
  • Gently press your dog’s paw into the dough
  • Use a straw to create a small hole at the top
  • Bake at 200 degrees in the oven for 2-3 hours or until completely dry
  • Once cooled, grab some acrylic paint to decorate
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Staying Healthy This Holiday Season

The holidays are upon us and it is a time of family, friendship and celebration but can also be a time of stress for us with travel plans, interrupted schedules and falling out of sync with our routines.

Thanksgiving is one of the most awaited events of the year because it unifies all the people that we love the most at one bountiful table. The constant wave of laughter and culinary delicacies are the highlights of the day but when it comes to food, how much is too much? If you tune into your body and think that you’re already stuffed, and yet, you still want to have a pinch serving of each food to suffice your cravings; that’s a red flag. One way to distract yourself from overeating is to socialize and be more mindful during your meal. This year focus on feeding yourself not only with what’s served but also with stories and emotions.

Start off your day with a fresh fruit smoothie which will provide you with a boost in your metabolism and provide you with a lot of amazing and supportive nutrients. Take a stroll along the sidewalk or do some cycling to start your body and keep the blood flowing. A shot of apple cider mixed with water can also lift your digestion (you can add this to your daily routine as it can help your overall health). CHEW CHEW CHEW! Eat your food slowly. It will give you a lot more time to chat with your family and friends plus, you’re giving your tummy a way to easily digest, no one’s in a race here, so savor every bite. Last but not the least, do not consume too much food in one sitting.

Digestion plays a big part for us during this time because of the additional or different foods we may be eating so be sure to include fiber-enriched dishes at your table such as salads, beans, and veggies. After eating, do not lie down for 2 to 3 hours to avoid acid reflux or indigestion. Also, if you feel stuffed or bloated, drinking a cup of peppermint or chamomile tea can ease your discomfort. The next morning, get your body into the groove to invigorate your stomach and to burn calories; Eat foods that are high in fiber like carrots, nuts, and beans and drink plenty of water to support the body’s elimination processes.

Quick Tips for the Holidays

Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain. A moderate and daily increase in exercise can help partially offset increased holiday eating. Try 10- or 15-minute brisk walks twice a day.

• Don’t skip meals. Before leaving for a party, eat a light snack like raw vegetables or a piece of fruit to curb your appetite. You will be less tempted to over-indulge.

• Survey party buffets before filling your plate. Choose your favorite foods and skip your least favorite. Include vegetables and fruits to keep your plate balanced.

• Eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed. Savor your favorite holiday treats while eating small portions. Sit down, get comfortable, and enjoy.

• Be careful with beverages. Alcohol can lessen inhibitions and induce overeating; non-alcoholic beverages can be full of calories and sugar.

• If you overeat at one meal go light on the next. It takes 500 calories per day (or 3,500 calories per week) above your normal/maintenance consumption to gain one pound. It is impossible to gain weight from one piece of pie!

• Take the focus off food. Turn candy and cookie making time into non-edible projects like making wreaths, dough art decorations or a gingerbread house. Plan group activities with family and friends that aren’t all about food.

• Try serving a holiday meal to the community, playing games or going on a walking tour of decorated homes.

• Bring your own healthy dish to a holiday gathering.

And even if you fall of the wagon during the holidays there is always a new day to jump back on that wagon – If you need some additional support and assistance to get back on track my 28 Day Hormone Reset Detox may be just what you need after the holidays to get back on track!

Cherish this moment and keep the love alive. Here’s wishing you a happy Thanksgiving and holiday season!

Cheers!

Cranberry Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1- 12 ounce package fresh cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin purée (nothing added just pumpkin)
  • 3 tablespoons almond butter (or your favorite nut butter)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Mix all of the ingredients together in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Bring the sauce to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the berries begin to break, or for about 20 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and let it sit until it reaches room temperatures. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
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No Tricks – Healthy Halloween Treats

The hunt begins for a wickedly delicious and hauntingly healthy Halloween dessert this spooky festive season. The cascade of leaves from the branches of the hollow trees may be the start of our demise, but surprise! We are not going on that route because we will enjoy this holiday with an array of festive and flamboyant treats that will feast not only our eyes but also our guts and health!

Chocolate Pumpkin Cups

Less carving and more baking for pumpkin! A luscious chocolate cups that are flavored with festive ingredients which are maple and cinnamon for a spark of brilliance and excitement.

Ingredients:

Chocolate Layers

  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

Pumpkin Layer

  • 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 tablespoons almond butter (or your favorite nut butter)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.
  2. Combine all ingredients for the chocolate layer in a small bowl. Mix until well combined. I found that measuring out about 1/2 tablespoon (or a little less) into each cupcake liner was just enough to fill both chocolate layers. These layers are very thin! I made 10 chocolate cups. You may have to spread out the chocolate so it fills the whole liner. Freeze for 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the pumpkin layer. Combine all ingredients for the pumpkin layer in a small bowl. Mix until well combined. I measured out about 1 tablespoon for each cup. Layer over the chocolate and freeze for 20 minutes or until firm.
  4. Finish by layering the leftover chocolate over the pumpkin layer and freeze for an hour or until firm.
  5. Transfer cups to a sealed container and store in the freezer.

Adapted From: The Glowing Fridge

Candy Skull Crushers

Let’s take the spooky level a little further by creating a field of creepy mini happy skulls. They are an amazing nibs of healthy treat that you can share with the children and will surely put a smile on their faces.

Ingredients:

Equipment/Materials

  • A blender / food processor
  • A candy mold or ice cube tray

For the “white chocolate” coating

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup cashew nuts
  • 1 tbsp raw honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp raw almond milk

For the berry filling

  • 1/4 cup goji berries
  • 1/4 cup fresh blackberries (can be substituted with other berries)
  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts
  • 2 tbsp raw almond milk or milk of choice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions:

  1. To make the “white chocolate” coating, mix all ingredients in a blender or food processor until completely smooth. Add a tiny bit more milk if it’s hard to blend.
  2. Make the berry filling by separately mixing all ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth and resembles a thick sauce.
  3. Fill your mold up to about 1/3 way with the white chocolate and freeze for a few minutes. (Should only take about 10 minutes for it to firm up.)
  4. Then spoon in about 1/2 tsp full of the berry filling, keeping it in the center of the mold. And freeze for a further 10 minutes.
  5. Now fill up to the top with the white chocolate and freeze or refrigerate to set for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Keep in the fridge or freezer so it will keep a nice solid texture. Will be fine at room temperature for about 15 minutes before it softens.

Adapted From: Wallflower and Kitchen

Be creative and go EXTRA as much as you want because after all this season is meant to celebrate the characters that made us feel happy, surprised, inspired, and confident.

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Health Benefits of Apple

Glorified as the food that keeps the doctor away, apple is a staple fruit for every American household. The abundance of apples can be found all year round and it is one of the most cultivated fruit. Because of that, it has been produced in different forms such as juices, purees, and fruit cocktails. The real question is, does its Welsh proverbial quotation live up to the benefits for our bodies? Together, let’s find out!

Stronger Guts

In order to keep the good bacteria that support your digestion healthy, feeding them with a type of fiber called pectin keeps them in nourished and that type of compound can be found in apple. 

Excellent for your Brain

Some might doubt that apple juice may have fewer health benefits than eating the whole fruit but to debunk that notion, apple juice has the ability to preserve acetylcholine which is a neurotransmitter which can decline through aging and lower level of acetylcholine is associated to Alzheimer’s disease.  Just keep your juice intake to a maximum of a few ounces at a time because of the high sugar content.

Rich in Antioxidants

Apple is packed with Vitamin C which acts as an anti-inflammatory and immunity booster, and it also keeps your skin healthy and smooth. This fruit is also loaded with Polyphenols that regulate digestion, prevent and improve the condition of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.

We also have a delicious and truly delectable apple recipe for all of you. Check it out and enjoy this snack with your friends and family!

SPICED APPLE MUFFINS

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of coconut flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon medium grind sea salt (if you use fine, use 1/4 teaspoon)
  • 3/4 cup of shredded apples (wash, and core the apples, and then shred, peel and all)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup of coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup of honey
  • 3 large eggs

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Prep the muffin tins or the baking cups.
  2. In a medium-size bowl combine the dry ingredient and briskly whisk until all lumps are removed.
  3. Add coconut oil and honey.
  4.   Melt together on the stove-top, just until melted (don’t get it hot, otherwise, it could cook your eggs prematurely).
  5. Add the eggs while lightly whisking the mixture. Whisk until everything is well combined, and then add the shredded apples.
  6. Divide between ten muffin tins, and bake for about 25 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean when poked in the middle of the muffin.
  7. Allow to cool for a few minutes and take out of the muffin tins and serve!
  • Add a bit of lemon juice or vinegar and baking soda in place of the baking powder to make these Gaps Friendly.

Adapted from: https://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/2009/09/spiced-apple-muffins-gluten-grain-and-dairy-free.html

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Turkey Zoodles Recipe – Paleo, Gluten Free

Can I tell you that I LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe!  It’s super fresh, fast, healthy, detox friendly, paleo and gluten free.  What’s not to love?!?  This is a dish even YOUR KIDS are going to eat.  My dog Brie enjoys any leftover zoodles!

This is a 20 minute one pan dish if you follow my preparation and kitchen tool techniques and I especially enjoy it during the summer.  I keep the zucchini cold and cover the cold zoodles with the heat meat, veggie, sauce combo and it becomes a fresh summer dish for these hot hot hot Southern summer days.

You can also substitute grass fed beef for the organic turkey if you wish.

In this recipe I use a jar of marinara in order to save time for those quick weekday meals.  When choosing your sauce choose one without any added sugars and I always buy one that has the least amount of sugar/carbs listed on the label.  Some fantastic brands are: Organico Bello, Cucina Antica,  

Also, be sure to have your tools on hand to make your life EASIER – Two kitchen items I cannot live without is my garlic roller/peeler – seriously if you don’t have one of these you need one. I can peel my garlic in 3 seconds flat with this bad boy.  Also you’ll want a spiralizer to make those yummy zoodles. With this tool I can zoodle a zucchini in about 20 seconds.  Dinner in 20 minutes? BOOM!

Here’s to healthy quick meals!

Italian Turkey Zoodles

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 medium zucchini – spiralized
  • 1 lb organic ground turkey
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • One medium onion – diced
  • 8 oz mushrooms – diced
  • 3 cloves garlic – peeled and minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper (optional)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 24oz jar of no sugar added marinara sauce
  • Fresh basil chopped

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Spiralize your zucchini and put the spiralized zucchini on a paper towel to drain while you prepare the rest of the meal.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet heat 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium heat.
  3. Add organic turkey, onion, mushrooms and garlic and cook until turkey is no longer pink and vegetables are tender; breaking up turkey into crumbles, 8-10 minutes; drain.
  4. Put pan back on the burner and turn the heat down to a simmer
  5. Add your marinara sauce – I usually use ¾ of a jar – just depends on how wet you want your dish.
  6. Stir in your spices.
  7. Let the pan simmer until all ingredients are well mixed and warm.
  8. Place a cup of spiralized zucchini on your plate, spoon your turkey, veggie, sauce mixture over the zucchini.  Garnish with chopped basil.
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This is why we can’t have “rice things”

Arkansas passes “truth in labeling” act to prevent sale of Cauliflower Rice

In light of the growing trend and popularity of Paleo and Keto diets we are seeing more foods on the market like cauliflower rice, and almond milk.

This week Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson signed a “truth in labeling” bill into legislation that effectively prohibits manufactures from misleading consumers into thinking their products are something they are not.  This law will go into effect to protect Arkansas’ meat and rice producers.

“This law only affects people who want to deceive the public about how their food originated,” bill sponsor Rep. David Hillman told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette . “And if you’re not trying to deceive the public, this will not affect you or any of the outlets who sell these products.”

The law, which takes effect 90 days after the 2019 session ends, will come with a $1,000 fine for every violation. Companies labeling non-rice as rice in food packaging will be liable for a $1,000 fine for each violation.

Arkansas is the sixth state to pass such legislation, and the only one to include rice. Missouri was the first state to pass legislation regulating meat substitutes.

Personally, I’m all for any type of labeling laws that will create more transparency and truth in what is EXACTLY in our foods, products and toiletry items.  We have a long way to go still on full and truthful labeling but this may be a step in the “rice” direction.

Author:

Dr. Stephanie Zgraggen, DC, MS, CNS, CCN is a licensed chiropractor, certified clinical nutritionist, and owner of Lime and Lotus, LLC in Charleston, South Carolina.  She utilizes saliva testing, herbs, and whole food supplements to correct female hormones imbalances in her patients.  Download her free guide: Dr. Stephanie’s Naughty List – The Top Five Foods that Wreck Your Hormone Health here

Chicken Cauliflower Rice Recipe – Keto and Paleo Friendly

Below is one of my favorite Cauliflower Rice recipes – this one is great if you love Asian inspired flavors.  This recipe substitutes coconut liquid aminos for soy sauce and cauliflower rice for the real thing so its low carb, paleo and keto friendly and if you leave off the Sriracha and egg it’s also AIP friendly too.  The links in the recipe are for the exact ingredients and tools I use in my own kitchen at home – Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 small head of cauliflower, riced
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • 1 pound uncooked organic chicken breast, cubed
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 inch ginger, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha
  • 2 tablespoons coconut liquid aminos, divided (tastes like soy sauce)
  • 2 cups broccoli, cut into small florets
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 egg
  • 2 stalks green onion, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Remove core and leaves from cauliflower. Cut into florets and place into food processor. Pulse until rice-like texture, set aside in large bowl. You can also use a bag of pre-riced cauliflower, if preferred. Approx. -4 cups.
  2. In skillet over medium heat, place coconut oil. When melted, add onion, garlic and ginger to pan and sauté until fragrant.
  3. Add chicken to skillet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté chicken until cooked through and golden.
  4. Pour sriracha and half of liquid aminos into pan to coat chicken.
  5. Add broccoli and water to pan and cover. Allow to steam for about 5-7 minutes, until it begins to soften.
  6. Place cauliflower rice in pan, sprinkle with a little salt and add remaining liquid aminos.
  7. Gently stir so cauliflower rice is coated. Continue cooking for about 10-15 minutes until broccoli is fork tender and cauliflower rice is soft.
  8. Push the cauliflower rice and veggies to the edges of the pan leaving a hole in the center. Crack the egg open in the center of the pan. Let it fry, breaking the yolk apart with a fork.
  9. Once the egg is completely cooked, gently mix it in with the cauliflower rice. Garnish with sliced green onions and sesame seeds, if desired.