Alternative Autoimmune Cookbook Review & Sample Recipe: Rosemary and Shallot Roasted Butternut Squash

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“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”
~ Brené Brown


A New Cookbook on the AIP Block

The paleo community has been blessed with a wide array of cookbooks for years, but the same has not been true for those following the autoimmune protocol (the AIP). For years, we had no resources at all. Then, Mickey published The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook in 2013. A year later, Sarah published the Paleo Approach Cookbook. And now, I’m excited to announce we have a third: The Alternative Autoimmune Cookbook by Angie Alt. It’s so exciting that more and more resources are becoming available to support us on this healing journey. It ain’t easy, but thanks to people like Mickey, Sarah and Angie, it’s getting easier.

Some people may ask, “Do we really need another AIP cookbook?” OMG – Yes, please! I can’t tell you how many depressing moments I’ve had flipping through paleo cookbooks and finding that 90% percent of the recipes contain ingredients I can’t eat. There are only three hardcopy AIP cookbooks currently available, all unique, and I’m so grateful for each and every one of them. (This cookbook is available in both e-book and hardcopy.)

What Makes It Special?

Angie is known for speaking honestly about the emotional journey of autoimmunity, so this is more than just a cookbook. Yes, it has recipes, but it also has chapters addressing things like denial and anger. Angie is also flat-out funny. Any book that has a “Butt Manifesto” gets my seal of approval! I would say this book is part cookbook, part memoir, and part excellent health coaching advice.

It’s also one of the prettiest books I’ve seen. Angie chose self-publishing to stay true to her vision, but she also hired a team of professionals to help her produce a top-quality product (an editor, designer, photographer and recipe collaborator). The result? An absolutely gorgeous book, in every way.

Let’s Talk Recipes

There are 59 total: you’ll find 28 for the elimination phase and 31 for the reintroduction phases. This isn’t a detailed guide to reintros like my e-book. Rather, it’s a book that shows you what life long-term on the AIP looks like. Strict AIP isn’t meant to last forever, and Angie wanted to make sure her book expressed that. The recipes in the reintroduction phases include ingredients she herself has been able to add back into her diet. 21 of them are Stage One Reintroductions, as outlined in The Paleo Approach. These are the foods most likely to be reintroduced successfully and include things like fruit-based spices, seed-based spices and fresh legumes. She also has 10 recipes for the later phases, which include the following ingredients: butter, almonds, alcohol, chocolate, coffee and white rice. The recipes are very clearly marked with a reintroduction box, where it applies. And some paleo ingredients are never included. This book is 100% egg-free, 100% nightshade-free, and butter is the only dairy ingredient (and used in only 4 recipes).

When Angie was writing this book, I was one of her recipe testers, and I can tell you that the Honey-Thyme Brined Pork Roast is mouthwateringly delicious! The first recipes I’m dying to try now that I have my hands on the whole book are: Turmeric Pumpkin Soup with Shrimp (on the cover), Bacon Burger Mega Meatballs, and Autumn Cider Sorbet.

Meet Angie

Angie smiling with long brown hair and big gold earringsWhen you have one autoimmune disease, it’s not uncommon to develop another, and if you develop a third, you get a special label: Multiple Autoimmune Syndrome. Add to that the health devastation of waiting almost 15 years for a full diagnosis, and I think you’ve also earned the title, Autoimmune Warrior. Angie has celiac disease, endometriosis and lichen sclerosus. It wasn’t until she found the AIP in 2012 that she started reclaiming her health. Now, two years later, she’s helping others do the same. She is a co-author of the blog Autoimmune Wellness and works as a health coach. I interviewed Angie about her book, and as usual, she spoke from the heart:

What’s your favorite chapter in your book?

Well, it isn’t a “chapter,” but I had A LOT of fun writing the “Butt Manifesto.” That first came out of a discussion I had in one of my group coaching sessions. You’ll have to read the book for all the details, but it was a very freeing experience to write that piece. I think we should use humor as often as possible on the autoimmune journey. My sisters and I always say that you have to make fun of life, otherwise it is going to be a very miserable ride.

What’s your favorite recipe?

Uh, anything with pork. I really love pork. I’m also really proud of the Lemon Bar Ice Cream. That recipe is a bit of a labor of love, but I worked on developing it for a long time and I think the results are so delicious.

I chose the Brené Brown quote at the top of this article, because I know she’s one of your heroes. You embrace vulnerability, writing about topics others may avoid, because you want to authentically connect with your readers, and let them know they’re not alone. In this book, you opened up for the first time about your autoimmune skin condition: lichen sclerosus. Because it’s located around the sexual organs, people often are afraid to talk about it. What made you decide to name the diagnosis now?

I’ve never hidden my lichen sclerosis diagnosis, but I’ve always referred to it publicly as simply an “autoimmune skin condition.”  Over the last several years, a few fellow sufferers worked up the courage to email me and ask.  In those cases, I was always really open, because I knew how tough the disease is, and I wanted those people to know they had connected with someone who understood.

Then during the past year with health coaching, I started to get more frequent requests for help or information, as more people knew my story and made the connection.  The clincher was when a devastated mother of a young teen girl contacted me.  We had a short consult over the phone, and she cried.  It had been really difficult to get a proper diagnosis for her daughter, the disease had progressed beyond a mild case, and she was so worried about her daughter’s normal sexual development and future sexual health.  As you can imagine, her daughter, who was already dealing with puberty, was really struggling emotionally.

There’s this idea that LS is only seen in post-menopausal women, but it can happen in girls, pre-menopausal women and even in men.  To make matters worse, because it involves the sexual organs, misdiagnosis can be a horrible mess, with doctors declaring everything from yeast infection to sexually transmitted disease, even sexual abuse.  Talk about traumatic!  The earlier LS is identified the better the chances that permanent, debilitating damage to the organs affected can be avoided.  And, obviously, the more likely a sufferer is to avoid the emotional toll that misdiagnosis and the progressing disease can take.  My heart was broken for this girl and the extra burden that was now placed on her sexual health, an area of our lives that is already very delicate.

By that time I was working on the book, and I decided that being open about my LS could maybe help with the deep emotional distress that goes with this disease, and possibly help others identify not only LS, but the potential to develop Multiple Autoimmune Syndrome earlier (which often includes a skin disorder).  I’m almost 36 years old. I thought, ‘I’ll be vulnerable here, so that maybe a scared 13 year old out there can be less vulnerable.’  (To clarify, lichen sclerosis is NOT a sexually transmitted disease.  It cannot be spread from one person to another.)

What was the hardest part about writing a book, and what was the best part?

Writing is not really the hard part for me, but recipe development is tough.  That was a really intense, long process.  I did learn a ton spending six months working on recipes with my little sister, Jenifer Beehler, though.

The best part was probably seeing each of the members of my team bring their contribution to the project to light.  When my little sister “turned in” the recipes she developed, I was so impressed at her creativity in the kitchen.  Next came my photographer, Toni Snelling, with her photos.  She was meticulous during our week-long photo shoot and it really shows in the beauty of each photo.  Then my designer, Chelsey Luther, started showing me her design ideas, and I was floored.  She took all my ideas and intentions with the book to a whole other level.  Finally, my editor, Anne Hedgecock, did her painstaking job, and suddenly my messy manuscript looked professional.  I absolutely adore my team.

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cubed squash on a cookie sheet

Sample Recipe

Angie’s cooking style is to pack as much flavor as possible into a meal, without spending a ton of time in the kitchen. This recipe exemplifies that simplicity, and it features one of my favorite winter squash.

Print
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Rosemary & Shallot Roasted Butternut Squash (Paleo, AIP, GAPS, Wahls, Whole30)


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  • Author: Angie Alt
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients


Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Put diced squash in a large bowl and drizzle with oil. Add shallots, rosemary and salt. Stir to coat.
  3. Spread squash in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  4. Roast 30 minutes, stirring halfway through for even browning.
  5. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  1. Time-saving tip: You can often find pre-cubed butternut squash at the grocery store.
  2. If you're working with a whole butternut squash and find peeling it challenging, this inexpensive peeler makes following those squash curves easy!
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Side Dishes
  • Method: Oven

More Delicious Recipes & Resources

Update: A giveaway was held to celebrate the publication of this book, and the winner was chosen with a random number generator. Congratulations to Benjamin! If you didn’t win, don’t despair. The book is reasonably priced, worth every penny, and available in e-book or hardcopy.

Do You Have My Books?

141 comments on “Alternative Autoimmune Cookbook Review & Sample Recipe: Rosemary and Shallot Roasted Butternut Squash”

  1. I’m 6 months into AIP with no successful reintroductions so I’m always looking for new recipe ideas. Thanks for the chance and all you do here in the website! Your time and passion for sharing your experience is making a difference.

  2. Hi,
    Merry Christmas to everyone in your family and all your readers.
    I enjoy your website and I follow your recipes and doing great. I would like to win your cookbook for christmas as a present from you.
    Thanks
    almas nathoo

  3. I would love to win a copy of this book! I too suffered “down there” pain for years and my doctor suspects lichen sclerosis. It’s truly sad how difficult it is to find healing for these issues that are so private. Thank you for your contribution!

  4. Thank you so much for your web site, and your focus today on Angie Alt and her new book. What an interesting and educational interview.

    of course, I would like to win a copy of her new book, and will visit her website.

    — Jane

  5. I would love to win a copy of the e-book, as shipping from the US is way to expensive to little old New Zealand! Interensting link to the Multiple Autoimmune Syndrome page – who would have guessed that once you get three or more you get known as really special … I’d hate to disagree with the experts, but is having more than 5 really rare? I bet not in reality.
    Many thanks for all that you do on your blog – many, many people appreciate it worldwide. Emily

  6. I’ve just started down the AIP road, and it looks like this one would be super useful! That squash + shallots recipe looks fabulous.

  7. I would like to officially start the aip diet January 1. This would be a great help to me. I am currently losing weight and having an autoimmune flare up of celiac disease. I’m growing more frustrated by the minute and it seems almost everything gives me abdominal pain. Please help.

  8. So exciting to have another great resource from such a knowledgable gal!! I’ve been AIP for over two years and would love some inspiration to keep me going. Thanks for your weekly recipe roundup. Love it!!!

    1. Hi Grace. I just checked, and it looks like you’ve already taken care of it. For anyone else who is getting too many comment emails, there should be a “manage your subscription” link at the bottom of each email you receive. Click that, and you’ll have the option to remove yourself from notifications.

  9. This is the first blog post I have been able to listen to with narrator. It was a very nice experience because I can listen and crochet at the same time. I have heard many positive things about the Alternative Autoimmune Cookbook.

  10. I have a few autoimmune diseases and related health problems. I am on the AIP diet. Deciding what to eat and planning meals is a challenge. I would really appreciate all the useful info and great recipes from this book. I am looking forward to the many delicious and nutritious options in it to help me through my healing journey. THANK YOU so much Angie and Eileen for everything you do for the autoimmune community.

  11. I would love to win a copy of this cookbook! It would be great to have access to all of the AIP cookbooks that have been written to compare and contrast the recipes written by Mickey, Sarah, and now Angie too! 🙂

  12. I’d love a copy of Angie’s book – new to AIP since July 1st & still struggling to keep it interesting at mealtime.

  13. I`d love to win this book. I follow you and Angie on Facebook and read your blogs faithfully. I`ve fallen off the AIP wagon a number of times and I really admire Angie`s (and your) persistance. Sometimes I feel like it`s hopeless because I`m 67 years old with a lifetime of healing to do but I keep trying.

  14. I would love to win Angie’s cookbook! I tend to make the same things over and over on my 3 month journey with AIP…some new recipes and Angie’s stories would be so welcome. Thanks for all you do!

  15. WOOO HOOO! Another cookbook full of great recipes for nutritional, delicious, and healthy healing! THANK YOU! I’d love to win the free copy.

  16. We are 2 months into AIP and I’m looking forward to being able to start reintroducing foods. This would be an awesome cookbook to have to help me through that. Thanks for the chance!

  17. I’d love to win a copy! Started GAPS because my 5 year old autistic son was diagnosed pre-diabetic and having hypothyroidism. He also suffers from gluten, corn, yeast, dairy, soy, and peanut allergies. Along with my own neuro autoimmune condition, I felt switching to an AI plan was the best of both worlds.

  18. I would love to win! My 11 year old was just diagnosed with autoimmune disorder and I desperately need help. My whole family is starting AIP January 1st and I’m a bit overwhelmed.

  19. Having recently been diagnosed with a 3way combo of auto immune diseases -and having been on the AIP for almost 2 months–I would love some more recipes for both me (and to sneak into my family’s diet, as I have 3 members with crohns/uc.). Thank you for all help!

  20. Since starting the AIP, it seems all my food has a similar flavor profile. This cookbook would really help me to jazz it up a bit!

  21. would love to win! I’m 1.5 months in to AIP here in Mexico as a missionary family, but a little lost for reintroduction recipes with ingredients I have available here! I have Celiac and RA, so really trying to dial my diet in to control the daily pain of RA. Thanks so much for the opportunity to win, plus all the resources available on your blog.

  22. I would LOVE a copy of this cookbook! I have been on the AIP meal plan for a couple of months and have felt dramtic results! New recipes would be fantastic!

  23. This sounds like an amazing book. I’d love to win, could really use help with more options on the AIP for psoriasis and possible psoriatic arthritis+. Really appreciate all you are doing for us out here in AIP land.

  24. I have dealt with multiple health problems for many years. I had read about autoimmune disease, but blew it off because I didn’t want to believe that I might need to change my eating habits so drastically. I finally had enough and jumped in. I have reduced/nearly eliminated almost all of my symptoms including some I had no idea were related to autoimmune disease. In the past 6 months, I have also lost 50 pounds. A much appreciated side effect of eating this way. This cookbook could really help change up my routine. I tend to fall into a rut, and eat the same things over and over. Thank you for the opportunity to win!

  25. Being a senior citizen, I don’t have a whole lot of room for error. This book sounds like a new opportunity for me to strike some kind of balance with my well being, especially to gain some pounds. Thank you so much!

  26. Sarah Pendergraph

    This would be a great addition to my repertoire. Always looking for new recipes, especially ones without nightshades–my biggest bugaboo.

  27. I hope I win! The moment my husband (who has rheumatoid arthritis) and I return from the holidays out of town we are going to begin our AIP journey into better health. I am a bit anxious about it but you and several others that have written these great books and blogs have made this feel like we can succeed. Thank you for all the hard work that you have done to make healing easier for so many.

  28. I would love to win this book, although I have the Paleo Mom’s Dinner book, and have been about 1/4 of the way through the Roundtable Archives (hint to Teri Riley), I’m still finding new recipes to try/love and winning this book would help immensely.

  29. I am just getting my feet wet regarding what to and what not to eat. This sounds like the perfect read for me to get on and stay on the AIP path. YAY!!!!!

  30. “can I have some more please?” not enough AIP recipe books out there and this would look very happy next to my other two 🙂

  31. I need all the recipe help I can get!!! I recently went AIP after a very bad Ulcerative Colitis flare which lead me to 8 days in the hospital. Upon my return home to my family, my loving husband announced that he and my 4 kids (ages 5, 4, and 2yo twins) are going to join me in my food journey and have wiped my cupboards bare of all offending/tempting foods. Healing and recovering is hard enough, but trying to weed through recipes that are AIP compliant AND that my family will like has been tougher than I thought. Anything that makes this mommy’s life easier is MUCHO appreciated!

  32. There can never be too many aip cookbooks! Well done for adding a new one! Looking forward to the memoir and health coaching elements too.

  33. You have been a lifesaver for me! Could not do this without you. I would dearly love to win this recipe book. Love from cold and rainy Wales!

  34. I would love to win this book! I appreciate all the information on this site too, as I am learning to deal with my autoimmune issues.

  35. I really want this book! I have been stalking it since it came out but I can’t buy anything until the settlement for our house comes through (6 more weeks) I can’t wait that long!!!!!!

  36. I just listened to Angie’s story today on the first episode of your podcast. I would love to win a copy of her new cookbook!

  37. Oh, I would love to win a copy!! I have read such beautiful reviews of this book so far! I have 2 autoimmune diseases I am eating to beat each day. Always looking for new recipes to keep things interesting and delicious.

  38. I have been on an AIP diet for 3 years and didn’t even know it. The recipes have helped me so much expand the repertoire of foods I eat. It also has helped knowing it isn’t just me, there are thousands and thousands just like me. So being the pickiest eater in the world makes this even harder but having recipes to choose from would help me from losing weight…a struggle every day…

    1. Would love to win this lovely book,I can not get it here.I am very new to AIP,doing very well and losing weight,I have no pain.
      I have Celaic,hypoglycemia,low thyroid and Arthritis,so this book would be a huge help for me.
      thank you so much xx

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