Eat Like a Dinosaur: our gluten-free book for kids!

It’s been a hectic summer.  You’ve seen our site transformation, our t-shirts launch and now, we’re announcing to you that we’ve written a gluten-free recipe and guidebook for children, which is now available for Pre-Order! I don’t think we’ve got any movie deals or plans for world domination anytime soon, so I sincerely hope this to be the last of the “big projects” or announcements we have on our to-do list for quite some time.

[button link=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1936608871/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=bellaonlinepr-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399373&creativeASIN=1936608871″ color=”green” newwindow=”yes”] Pre-Order with Amazon[/button]  [button link=”http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1034171842?ean=9781936608874&itm=1&usri=eat%2blike%2ba%2bdinosaur” color=”teal” newwindow=”yes”] Pre-Order with B&N[/button]

For those interested in the what and why…

We had this hair-brained idea in June, which we shared with CaveGirlEats when she came to visit, about self-publishing a kids’ cookbook.  We were (and are) just so thankful for finding a healthful way to feed our kids and really wanted to share those experiences and recipes with other parents who were asking us how in the world we got our kids to eat broccoli or how we dealt with birthday parties with pizza and cupcakes. We started working on some fun recipes to share, improving our photo quality and making our photos mouth watering for kids, like Meatball Salad, Apple Pie Cupcakes and Grain-Free Granola.

We joked that we thought we knew 4 family members or friends that might buy it to make us feel useful.  Liz, however,  insisted we call VictoryBelt to discuss our idea with them.  Matt and I both laughed, as if it was some sort of SNL joke she was telling us; they published Paleo Solution, Everyday Paleo, Paleo Comfort Foods and Make it Paleo.  There’s NO WAY we cackled and put it out of our minds.

Then she sent me a text message about a week later that went something like, “HAVE YOU CONTACTED THE PUBLISHER YET? WHEN CAN I BUY YOUR BOOK FOR THE KIDS IN MY LIFE?!” So we sent an e-mail to Victory Belt that was full of self-mockery and expected to hear nothing back. Turns out, they were actually interested.  And much to our ecstatic surprise, we received a call while on our vacation in July that gave us real goals and deadlines for this tiny vision we’d had.

And there it was, an opportunity to fulfill a dream. Right in front of us.  You may not know it, but Matt’s grandfather is a successful published author and it’s always been a dream of Matt’s as well. So he and I took it very seriously.  We wanted to make sure this book didn’t let our publisher or the community down; we wanted to positively spread the word about eating and cooking real food with your kids in a way that’s fun and inclusive.

But as we thought about it, it was more than a Paleo book.  It was a gluten-free, casein-free book.  There were quite a few allergen-free recipes.  How do we make this book appeal to the masses? How do we ensure that this is a kids’ book that happens to be Paleo and not a Paleo book for kids? It’s our goal that Paleo or not, a parent or grandparent could pick up this book and feel like there’s something to be learned, a recipe to be improved in their own kitchens, or simply a moment of licking spoons together that can bring them closer together and healthier at the same time.

The more I thought about who’d done that successfully and allowed us to share those moments and as a result how different our kitchen was, I just kept thinking about Elana Amsterdam.  Although I read Robb’s book to learn the science of why Paleo is how we wanted to eat, it was Elana who was the inspiration for our family to execute it in the kitchen.  “If she can bring protein-filled brownies to an after school game, I can surely figure out an alternative to birthday cake,” I thought.  She’s been an idol and fantastic role model for the gluten-free community since way before I was ever a member of it.

If you’ve followed our blog for any amount of time you know we love Elana.  The boys reference her in our house like a personal friend, “Can we have Elana’s pancakes for breakfast?” Cooking without wheat flour, butter and seed oils was a whole new kitchen adventure for us – and it was her blog and recipes that made it practical and fun. She may not have known it, but she re-taught Matt how to cook.  And, as a mother herself (how cute is this kid-created Chocolate Strawberry Shortcake recipe on her site?!), I couldn’t be any more thrilled and honored that she’s offered to be involved in the project as well.

As you can imagine, we’re just overwhelmed with all that has happened in a few short months.  We’ve made some genuine friends whom we shared our little secret with (thank you to WeAreStarDust, NomNomPaleo, PrimalPalate, LatestInPaleo, Balanced Bites, GlutenFreeEasily, Lexie’sKitchen, SpunkyCoconut and of course CaveGirlEats and many more friends who have offered the most awesome support).  Because of such wonderful support, the more we wrote the more excited we got and the larger the project became.

Suddenly our little hair-brained idea was a full-fledged book with over 100 recipes and projects for families to make together.  My personal favorite is the illustrated children’s story that will spark conversation about how removing processed foods from your diet can change the health of your family (the cover art is from one of the pages).  Remember that detox back in September? That was all because Matt’s cooking got so insanely good I couldn’t stop eating testing his recipes!

It’s such a relief to finally share this will you all!  We’ve been wanting to tell you SO much!  I’m sure you’ve had some suspicions about our saying we’re “testing recipes” but then don’t reveal them?  Well, if you did you were right.  We were keeping a secret from you – sorry!  But now we get to share recipes and pictures from the book, offer you sneak peaks at the kid-friendly, eye-catching layout and blog about the process, which in and of itself has been a wonderful journey.

Right now our book is in final review, we expect some LONG hours this month because we’re not the best editors of our own work and copy editors will need to bleed all over our pages – but, after that it’s off to the printer and then hopefully the book can be in your hands.  We look forward to spreading the word about healthful family eating being approachable and fun, even for picky eaters.  And get ready for some seriously awesome recipes like Anytime Cookies, Frozen Waffles, and Chicken Nuggets. Plus, you KNOW we’ll be trying to rustle up some great giveaways for you!

p.s. If you’re finding this blog for the first time as a result of our book launch: Hello, welcome!  Also feel free to find out more information About our Story or check out our Start Here 101 for more information and some good links that might be helpful in getting started on your own journey.  We hope you stay and look forward to talking with you!

You Might Also Like

  • OMGosh!!!!! You guys….I’m so excited for you!!!! When I don’t have a baby on my boob, I will be pre-ordering! 

    • Thanks Tara, I was really touched by your post yesterday – I had no idea we’d inspired you.  Sincerely, thank you! (Stacy)

  • Liz

    YAY! So happy to have provided any encouragement I could on your road to helping other families! This book needed to be written, and I can’t imagine a better family to serve as an example to others.

    • Encouragement? When Stacy mentioned she thought maybe we ought to self-publish a book, the calculations I did in my head said we’d never finish because to do so would be wasted effort. Without you, we’d never have done the proposal. Even after that, knowing that there were people out there we couldn’t let down pushed us through to the end!

  • Designerellen810

    Love this!! Congrats! I do have a baby on my boob and preordered one!!! Lol.
    Can’t wait to get it, looks amazing!

    • Thanks! It means a lot to me that all those hours I spent creating in the kitchen have inspired that kind of excitement!

  • Jjmom04

    Bring it on!!  Wahoo!  I have an old Williams Sonoma kids cookbook that my kids loved to dig out and beg to cook with, but I had to retire it.  Can’t wait to give them their own paleo cookbook to replace it!  On my way to preorder…

    • This is exactly why we wrote the book. When Cole got home from school, he and I would sometimes get out a cookbook and make a snack together. Of course our old cookbooks seemed to think the best kid snacks involved cups and cups of wheat and sugar…

      No one was writing for me, so we decided to write for ourselves.

  • Luv4amy

    Awesome! My kids are gonna be so excited to see this!  (BTW…I love Elana also and have used her recipes as is or for inspiration since we first began our paleo journey 8 months ago!)

    • Elana taught me everything I know about paleo baking, practically. When Stacy introduced paleo to our house, I had just learned how to bake the regular way. Finding Elana was very inspiring to me, since she proved you can make tasty baked goods without wheat. Which is why she was perfect for our book.

  • Fantastic! and sooo important.  I’m sharing this everywhere and pre-ordering today!  Thank you.

    • We think so too. Heck, that’s why we do what we do! Thanks for sharing our work!

  • Laura

    This is awesome!  I am so glad you are doing this, I am totally buying it!!

  • Woohoo!!!  Congratulations!  This sounds fabulous!  I can’t wait!!  Can we get signed copies? 🙂

    • For right now, we plan on having a few local signings, but if we figure out a strategy and theirs enough of a demand for it, I’m sure we’ll figure out a way to provide signed books to those that want them.

  • Whitney

    I am SOOO excited to see this post! I love it. So happy for you all and I can’t wait! 😀

    • Me neither! The excitement leading up was pretty intense for us, but now we have to wait again!

  • Congrats! I can’t wait to feature you guys on my blog so my readers can see how EASY this is for parents to accomplish! 🙂

    • We appreciate your support! I’ll even forgive you for drawing my wife to a far away city for an entire Saturday 😉

  • Can’t wait to get a copy…wish it was ready in time for christmas, it would have made great presents!

    • Jodie, we agree – can’t help that printing takes time though.  Once you’re finished with a book it can take anywhere from 3 months to 2 years to get copies in people’s hands!  Maybe it can be good birthday presents all year long 😉

  • marg

    Awesome Guys!  Just freaking awesome!  Can’t wait to buy this.  My kids might actually start believing the stuff I say and have fun in the kitchen!

    • Thanks Marg, that’s certainly the goal – if nothing else, it’ll at least help to start a dialog!

  • This looks very cool. Do you have any plans to sell it on Amazon UK? If you do, I promise to promote it on my blog 🙂

  • Jenny

    I am so excited for this! Can’t wait for my son to start eating real food so we can cook him some of these things! 🙂

    • Jenny

      Stacy- will you be offering a digital version of this any time? All my cookbooks so far are on my iPad!

      • Jenny, I sure hope so – all other VB books have been so far so I would assume it.  Usually takes a little while after the print publication comes out.  I want it available on our iphones too!

  • Rachel

    I am so excited for you guys. You have been inspirational to me and my boys for a while now and have been so pleased with the recipes we have tested. Cant wait!

    • Rachel, your feedback and support can’t be thanked.  Knowing we inspired you to change the health of your family is more than we could ever hope to do for people. Thank you!

  • Monifah

    Ordered from Denmark and spreading the word!!! Get my copy send to Holland though (parents address), because of custom problems here when ordering from US. Have 3 little dinosaurs at home, nr 3 starting solids in about a month so expect her to become a dinosaur in about a year ;o). Have Paleo granola baking in the oven as we speak, homemade with my 3 yr old, to surprise my 6 yr old when he gets home. A bowl of almond milk with granola, my favorite snack! Hope there will be subs in the book for different products though, as i can’t find palmsugar here for example..

    • Monifah, wow what a compliment that you’d be going through that rig-a-ma-role to get the book shipped to your family – thank you!

      Absolutely, we do address alternatives to almost all the ingredients in the book, even almond butter which some children have allergies to. I believe the only thing (off the top of my head) that’s an “unusual” food that can’t be substituted in some way is arrowroot powder – but I believe that’s found online if you cant’ find it locally.  Thanks!

  • How exciting! I will add it to my Amazon store! We need these books for our kids. Muchly. 🙂

    • Thanks a lot, Alison! We thought there might be a need for a book like this, so we decided to try and fill it!

  • Lexie | Lexie’s Kitchen

    Matthew, Stacy, Cole, Finian and Wesley … three cheers for a great family/team effort on this book! Mom and Dad, you have set an example for your boys in more ways than you know. You are such a beautiful, deserving family. Congratulations on this release!!


    • Thanks, Lexie! We really appreciate the support!

  • Pingback: Some Links Worth Sharing… « wholefamilystrong()

  • Leah

    YAY!  I’m so excited about this book, and can’t wait for it to be available!  Congrats, and good job!

    • Thanks! We’re really proud of it and hope you’ll love it!

  • Pingback: Kids & A Paleo Diet | Paleo Primal Post - Paleo Primal Post()