1. Eat one serving of dark, leafy greens every day
  2. Eat two servings of fermented foods every day
  3. Eat at least three whole eggs every day
  4. Eat oily fish three or four times per week
  5. Eat beef or lamb five days per week
  6. Eat a serving of liver once per week

These planks have not been a part of my table from the beginning, but after 3 years of Whole30-style eating and learning, these are the practices that guide my meal planning today. Dark leafy greens are the most nutritious vegetables on the planet, so I try to eat a big serving every day. Fermented foods are rich in probiotics that support gut health and digestion, so I eat a serving of sauerkraut or kimchi and drink a bottle of kombucha every day. Egg yolks contain incredibly important nutrition, so I eat at least 3 eggs per day and sometimes 4 or 5. The best source of the omega3 fatty acids that our bodies need is cold-water fish so I eat salmon, sardines, tuna, or herring every other day. The meat of ruminants is superior nutritionally to most protein sources, so I favor eating beef and lamb over chicken and pork. Beef liver offers nutrition that is not readily available from other sources, so I eat a serving of liver and onions every Friday. Note:  Fermented foods need to be introduced very carefully (or perhaps not at all) for those with a histamine intolerance, thyroid issues, or dysbiosis.

Personally, I don’t plan meals more than a day in advance, but here is a 7-day plan that builds a table with all these planks. You can build an even larger table from the more than 400 Whole30-approved recipes listed at http://www.wholelifeeating.com/recipe-index/.

Meal 1: Scrambled Eggs with Cold Sauerkraut

Meal 2: Salmon Salad over Salad Cut Hearts of Palm

Meal 3: Slow Cooker Brisket with Kale, Chard, Onions, and Dried Cranberries

Meal 4: Baked Eggs with Spinach and Tomatoes (add a serving of kimchi)

Meal 5: Slow Cooker Brisket with Kale, Chard, Onions, and Dried Cranberries (leftovers)

Meal 6: Pulled Roast Beef with Scalloped Turnips (use leftover roast beef)

Meal 7: Scrambled Eggs with Cold Sauerkraut

Meal 8: Tuna Salad with Avocado, Onion, Jalapenos, Pickles, and Dried Cranberries

Meal 9: Skillet Roasted Lamb Shoulder Chop with Brussels Sprouts

Meal 10: Skillet Chili with Onions and Jalapenos over Wilted Greens

Meal 11: Boiled Eggs with Hot Roasted Salsa (add a serving of kimchi or sauerkraut)

Meal 12: Calves Liver with Artichoke Hearts, Diced Tomatoes, and Prosciutto

Meal 13: Coconut Milk Salmon with Cauliflower and Baby Artichoke Hearts

Meal 14: Spinach Salad with Tomatoes, Olives, Pickled Onions, Mushrooms, and Eggs

Meal 15: Skillet Roasted T-Bone Steak and Broccoli (add a serving of sauerkraut)

Meal 16: Boiled Eggs with Mashed Avocado (add a serving of kimchi or sauerkraut)

Meal 17: Four-Hour Pot Roast over Wilted Greens

Meal 18: Skillet Roasted Chicken Thighs, Eggplant, Yellow Pepper, Broccoli, Carrots, and Tomatoes

Meal 19: Baked Eggs with Tomato, Spinach, and Onion (add a serving of kimchi)

Meal 20: Salmon Hash over Wilted Kale

Meal 21: Skillet Roasted Pork Loin Chops, Carrots, Green Beans, and Yellow Pepper, and Mushrooms

Notes: Sauerkraut and kimichi with live probiotic cultures are sold cold and you can find several varieties in good stores. I usually have 3 different bottles in my refrigerator at any time and switch among them to keep meals interesting.

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8 Responses to “The Six Planks of Tom Denham’s Whole30 Meal Planning Table”

  1. John Dach says:

    Hi Tom, just a little feedback. I’ve been following your menu suggestions while on tW30 and just wanted to say thanks for your contribution to the plan. I’m on day 29 and feeling great. After day 30 I’m not going to change much other than buying the best organic/grass fed food that I can find.The variety of your menu suggestions has been very helpful to me, thanks Tom.
    John Dach-

  2. This is fantastic! The Optimal Whole30! Proud to look at that list and see that I follow most of your Six Planks already, though I will now increase the number of times I eat oily fish. Need to restock on beef liver, too.

    Thanks Tom.

  3. Hi!
    Thanks so much for this great resource! Just curious about the issues with fermented foods and thyroid problems. Can you give anymore info on that?

    Thanks so much!

  4. Kristin says:

    Can you suggest a substitute for the oily fish? I am allergic to all seafood. Just starting my second whole30 and feeling great. Thanks!!

    • Tom Denham says:

      You can get some of the omega3 fatty acids that oily fish provide so abundantly from grass-fed beef, lamb, and bison and eggs from pastured chickens. There is a lot of talk on the internet of getting it from flax, but the human body is not good at getting omega3s from plant sources.

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