100+ Ways to Eat More Organ Meats - The Ultimate Offal and Odd Bits Recipe Round-Up

100+ Ways to Eat More Organ Meats #paleo #offal #TheCuriousCoconut

Are you looking for new ways to incorporate organ meats into your diet? Sadly, the tradition of eating organ meats and utilizing as much as possible from animals (including bones and gelatin) has fallen out of favor in our modern culture and many people may have never had the pleasure of eating liver, heart, or other types of offal. Nose-to tail-eating and not letting any part go to waste not only respects the animal, but it also provides your body with an incredible amount of nourishment that is difficult to obtain elsewhere. Certain critical nutrients, such as Co-Enzyme Q10, vitamin B12, and vitamin A, are found in incredibly high doses in organ meats. Traditionally, organ meats were never discarded or thought of as disgusting the way we treat them now -- in fact they were some of the most prized parts of an animal. 

To get into the details of the health benefits of including organ meats in your diet is beyond the scope of this post. This is meant to be a recipe resource. The majority of these recipes do contain additional information about the organ or odd bit that they feature. If you would like to learn more I'll leave you with a few links: Meat, Organs, Bones, and Skin; The Health Benefits of Consuming Organ Meats; The Benefits of Organ Meats; and The Liver Files.

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In an effort to help you start to include more organ meats and odd bits in your diet, I've compiled this huge list of paleo-friendly recipes that cover the whole animal: organs, bones (for broth), bony/cartilaginous/meaty bits (necks, tails, trotters, etc.) and gelatin (derived from skin/hides, bones, and connective tissue). If you are squeamish about getting started with organ meats, check out the very first section, which features recipes that hide their flavor so you don't even know they are present in the recipe. These recipes give you the nutrition from the organs without the taste. Later, you can experiment with recipes in which the flavor of the organs is prominent. Trust that, over time, you will become accustomed to their unique flavors and learn to appreciate and enjoy them without trying to mask them with other ingredients. You may even start to crave them! 

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And eating nose-to-tail isn't just about savory dishes like plates of liver and onions or bowls of chili with hidden ground heart; it includes dessert, too! Gelatin can be used in a wide variety of desserts (not just homemade Jell-O!) Check out the end of the post for a nice variety of dessert recipes that utilize gelatin.

Finally, if YOU have a recipe that you would like to see included in this round-up post, please tell me! I will be adding to this post over time to make it as comprehensive a resource as possible for tasty recipes that utilize the whole animal. At the time of publication, there are actually 128 recipes here, and I can't wait for it to grow to 200!


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Learn more about Co-Enzyme Q10, your heart, and eating heart from this great post by Divine Health from the Inside Out --- Co-Enzyme Q10: The Heart Health Nutrient

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Sweetbreads (plus Rocky Mountain Oysters)

Head Cheese and Brain Recipes

Kidneys

Chicken Gizzards

Miscellaneous

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Learn More About Gelatin

Gummies and Homemade "Jell-O"

Desserts

Other Recipes (Smoothies, Baked Goods, Velveeta)

Why are there baked goods here??! Well, gelatin can be used as a substitute for eggs! Perfect if you have an allergy or are following the autoimmune protocol. 


More Resources

If you really want to get in-depth with learning more about organ meats and how to utilize the whole animal, check out these books from my affiliate partner Amazon. Please note that in the cookbooks, you will have to make substitutions in some of the recipes if you adhere to a strict grain- or gluten-free, dairy-free, or legume-free diet. But, if you are following such a diet, you're probably pretty used to making those substitutions by now :) Also note that if you are from the US, the recipes may seem a bit foreign in Fergus Henderson's book, but it is lovely and inspirational regardless. 

Recommended Sources for Organ Meats

I am a huge proponent of eating meat from animals that were raised humanely, allowed to eat a species-appropriate diet, and who lived their lives outdoors on pastures and wooded areas. Supporting this sort of farming is good for you and the animals: the meat is much healthier for you to consume and the animals are allowed to lead happy lives eating the foods they are designed to eat (cows are not designed to eat corn only, and in fact they die if they are fattened up on corn for more than about 3-4 months. They suffer numerous health problems being forced to eat a diet of corn). The animals are also allowed to express their unique instinctual behaviors (chickens are not vegetarians! They like to forage for bugs and sometimes even small amphibians or reptiles. And pigs like to root around outdoors in the ground for tasty tidbits). 

It is especially important to source your organ meats from grass-fed cows, sheep, and goats, and from pasture-raised poultry and pork. The good news is that you can often find these cuts sold for a real bargain, especially if you contact your local farmers. I've procured tongues and hearts for $1/lb and even been given kidneys and sweetbreads for free by farmers who didn't want them and didn't think any of their customers wanted them, either. Use Eat Wild to locate pasture-based farmers in your area and get in touch with them to see what they can offer. Now, as organ meats are gaining in popularity, some farmers are charging more for theirs, but they are still an incredible buy due to the nutrient density.

If you don't have local farms, you can order online. Here are several sources that I recommend. I am an affiliate for US Wellness Meats but not the others. 

Slanker's Grass-Fed Meats --> http://www.texasgrassfedbeef.com/buy_meat_online.htm
White Oak Pastures --> https://whiteoakpastures.com/store/Thompson

US Wellness Meats

US Wellness Meats