Sneak Peek at Real Life Paleo: Pickled Onions on Everything

So last week we let you know that Real Life Paleo, our upcoming book, had grown as we wrote it . With over 100 pages on our unique 3 Phased Approach to a Paleo lifestyle with tear-out guides, meal plans, full table spreads, and over 175 recipes, Real Life Paleo ‘s expansion resulted in a nearly 100 page add-on and $5 price increase to the book. We were nervous that all of your pre-sales would be for not, but thankfully book sellers are honoring those purchases and the price is still posted on Amazon as $23.91 for a cover price of $39.95! We have no control over that but are super thrilled this book is so affordable, as we’re positive it will be accessible and useful to so many people. ♥

rlp-final-plainNotice anything new about the cover?  We’re thrilled that Dr. Sarah Ballantyne of The Paleo Mom asked us if she could write a foreword because she loved the book so much!


One of the things we focus on in Real Life Paleo is adding in nutrient dense foods. Now, I know you’ve all heard us talk about the importance of broth, organ meat, seafood, pastured egg yolks, and grass-fed meat high in Omega 3 (like beef and lamb), but one of the other things we focus on a lot is vegetables. Having been a vegetarian for 7 years, which led to me being in the worst health state of my life, I can assure you my morevegetablesthanavegetarian hashtag is legit – I eat way more vegetables now than I ever did before. And I firmly believe they contribute to micro-nutrient sufficiency, which is essential for health and wellness!

That’s why Real Life Paleo includes a TON of vegetables, from salads and sides, to one-pot meals, rices & mashes, and even condiments – like these pickled onions!

Pickled Onions from Real Life Paleo on Paleo Parents

That’s right, we not only show you how to easily make pickled onions; but, we also suggest that you put them on everything!

 Pork Belly and Prosciutto Bites from Real Life Paleo by Paleo Parents

Dr. Sarah Ballantyne found that in her research for The Paleo Approach that the scientific literature supported the idea that the addition of vegetables to a meat-heavy diet created balance and reduction in the likelihood of cancer. So, if you’re a meat eating carnivore, we highly suggest you find ways to add vegetables to your diet – and these pickled onions are a great place to start! That’s why Phase 3 of Real Life Paleo focuses on adding in these vegetables to your diet and provides a meal plan and tons of recipes to make doing so easy and delicious!

Did you know that:

  • Onions, like garlic, are members of the Allium family, and both are rich in sulfur-containing compounds that are responsible for their pungent odors and for many of their health-promoting effects. A wide variety of allyl sulfides are found in onion, including the four major diallyl sulfide. Also present are a wide variety of sulfoxides. Onions are an outstanding source of polyphenols, including the flavonoid polyphenols. Within this flavonoid category, onions are a standout source of quercetin.
  • Several servings of onion each week are sufficient to statistically lower your risk of some types of cancer. For colorectal, laryngeal, and ovarian cancer, between 1-7 servings of onion has been shown to provide risk reduction. But for decreased risk of oral and esophageal cancer, you’ll need to consume one onion serving per day (approximately 1/2 cup).
  • In animal studies, there is evidence that onion’s sulfur compounds may work in an anti-clotting capacity and help prevent the unwanted clumping together of blood platelet cells. There is also evidence showing that sulfur compounds in onion can lower blood levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, and also improve cell membrane function in red blood cells.
  • Human studies have shown that onion can help increase our bone density and may be of special benefit to women of menopausal age who are experiencing loss of bone density. In and of itself, the high sulfur content of onions may provide direct benefits to our connective tissue. Many of our connective tissue components require sulfur for their formation.
  • The total polyphenol content of onions is much higher than many people expect.  The total polyphenol content of onion is not only higher than its fellow allium vegetables, garlic and leeks, but also higher than tomatoes, carrots, and red bell pepper.
  • Within the polyphenol category, onions are also surprisingly high in flavonoids. For example, on an ounce-for-ounce basis, onions rank in the top 10 of commonly eaten vegetables in their quercetin content.
  • When we get quercetin by eating an onion-rather than consuming the quercetin in purified, supplement form-we may end up getting better protection from oxidative stress. That’s exactly what happened in an animal study where some animals had yellow onion added to their diet in a way that would provide the same amount of quercetin provided to other animals in the form of purified quercetin extracts. The best protection came from the onion version of this flavonoid, rather than the supplement form.
  • Onion’s antioxidants—including its hallmark flavonoid antioxidant, quercetin—also provide us with anti-inflammatory benefits. These antioxidants help prevent the oxidation of fatty acids in our body. When we have lower levels of oxidized fatty acids, our body produces fewer pro-inflammatory messaging molecules, and our level of inflammation is kept in check.
  • The flavonoids in onion tend to be more concentrated in the outer layers of the flesh. To maximize your health benefits, peel off as little of the fleshy, edible portion as possible when removing the onion’s outermost paper layer. Even a small amount of “overpeeling” can result in unwanted loss of flavonoids. For example, a red onion can lose about 20% of its quercetin and almost 75% of its anthocyanins if it is “overpeeled.”(source)

Slow Roasted Pork Shoulder from Real Life Paleo by Paleo ParentsSlow Roasted Pork Shoulder from Real Life Paleo over Roasted Rainbow Carrots is excellent with Pickled Onions

The health benefits of onions, and all vegetables, are tremendous. If we want to be in our ideal state of health and wellness it sometimes take a bit of (worthwhile) extra effort to go out of our way to add vegetables to our big hunks of meat. This recipe is so easy and absolutely flavorful that you’ll want to add it to everything!

Pickled Onions on Everything


  • 2 red onions, sliced
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons kosher or sea salt


  1. Place the onions in a sealable quart jar.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, water, lemon juice and salt.
  3. Pour the vinegar mixture into the jar over the onions. Push the onions down to completely submerge them.
  4. Seal the jar and set on the counter overnight before placing in the refrigerator.
  5. The onions will be ready to serve in 24 hours. Store leftovers refrigerated in the sealed jar for up to a month.

Pickled Onions from Real Life Paleo by Paleo Parents

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