Goodness- Recipes & Stories by Peter and Chris Neal- A Book Review

Having an online nutrition business has brought me many things. Clients, amazing online friends and acquaintances, and those whose mission it is to share healthy food with the world,

Peter and Chris Neal are the founders of Neal Brothers, a company they started back in 1988 in their parents kitchen. Their idea basically was to offer food products that were tastier and healthier than what was currently on the market. It was about natural ingredients and value for Peter and Chris, which is why their company has done so well over the years.


I first encountered Neal Brothers a few years back when I discovered that I could eat their roasted garlic pasta sauce. Now you may think it strange that I was so excited to find a pasta sauce that I could eat, but when you have food allergies little things like this are huge. Yes, I have multiple food allergies and most things in a can, jar or box are off limits to me, so I  prepare most of my meals from scratch. When I found Neal Brothers organic roasted garlic pasta sauce with ingredients that I could actually eat, what a find it was. Brown rice pasta topped with roasted vegetables and their pasta sauce was my go to dinner when I just wanted comfort food and something easy to prepare.RoastedGarlic-1

A couple of years ago I created a 21-day online Challenge that helps people to remove gluten, dairy and sugar from their diet. The idea behind the Challenge is that sometimes the very foods we eat are making us ill or creating health issues. By removing these foods people often realize that the chronic ailments and health conditions they have had for years simply disappear. Throughout the Challenge we talk about how to remove these foods, what substitutes and alternatives work well and of course all the healthy whole, natural foods you can eat. Often times I get asked if there are healthy packaged foods I can recommend. Its always nice to be able to share products with my clients that I can eat and Neal Brothers products has enabled me to create and share recipes with my online followers that are healthy and easy to make.

Fast forward to today and Chris and Peter Neal have just released ‘Goodness – Recipes & Stories, a cookbook with a difference. This cookbook celebrates good food, chefs, entrepreneurs, growers and food activists from across Canada who believe that healthy, local food need be accessible to all.


There is a movement happening around the world and it is taking hold. The farm to table movement refers to the stages of production of food: harvesting, storage, processing, packaging, sales and consumption. By returning to our roots, simply using fresh ingredients that have been locally grown and harvested we can help to reverse and prevent the many health conditions that plague our society, as well as lower food costs. Most of the foods we buy in the grocery store have traveled thousands of miles before they arrive on the shelves at your local market. This means it has taken more energy and money to get it there, plus many of the nutrients are lost in early harvesting and sitting on shelves for days.

The Standard American Diet relies on the over use of unhealthy, pre-packaged foods laden with genetically modified ingredients, sugar and preservatives.

The Neal brothers have brought together chefs, educators and community garden coordinators whom have donated their time. delicious recipes and stories that make this cookbook a must read for anyone who loves good, healthy food!

With recipes covering breakfast, soups, salads, appetizers, sides, mains, dips and desserts, I am not sure where to begin.

Today, I decided to make the Quinoa Chicken Salad Recipe as we had leftover chicken in the fridge. I didn’t have any grapes and at this time of year they are not in season, so I simply added in a bit more organic apple- it was delicious!

Be sure to check out all the amazing recipes in this cookbook, plus 50% of the profits will be donated to Community Food Centres Canada to bring people in low income communities together to grow, cook, share, and advocate for healthy food for all- you can find it online here.


Quinoa Chicken Salad Recipe

1 cup quinoa rinsed and drained

3 pieces roasted chicken( I used leftover chicken)

2 green onions, sliced

1 small handful seedless red grapes, halved

2/3 cup sweet apple, cored and diced

1/2 cup mayonnaise

juice of 1/2 lemon

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

1 small handful flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

Cook quinoa in 2 cups of water for 10- 18 minutes until done, fluff with a fork and let sit to cool.

Shred chicken into bite sized pieces and place in a bowl. Add in green onions, grapes, apple and stir.

In a small bowl mix mayonnaise and lemon juice until smooth.

Add quinoa to chicken mixture and toss gently. Pour dressing over quinoa mixture and season with salt and pepper. Add parsley on top.




About the Author

Written by: Shirley Plant
Shirley Plant is a nutritionist and the author of Finally… Food I Can Eat, a dietary guide and cookbook for people with food allergies, and those looking for healthy, tasty recipes. Shirley offers dietary counselling and menu planning through Delicious Alternatives.

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