The original version of my GREAT AIP Liver Recipe Round-Up was published back in July 2015. Year on year, it has remained one of my most popular posts. I find this both unsurprising and reassuring.
Unsurprising, because we AIPers know liver to be one of the most nutrient dense of foods available to us; and reassuring, because despite this, liver still holds a bit of an ‘ick-factor’ for many. It’s good to see folks move beyond the ‘ick’!
Since 2015, we’ve seen an increase in both the number of AIP bloggers and AIP-friendly liver recipes. This is my updated liver recipe round up!
“I work very hard, and I play very hard. I’m grateful for life. And I live it – I believe life loves the liver of it. I live it.” – Maya Angelou
Of all the things the Autoimmune Protocol has taught me – and the list is long – eating more organ meat is definitely up there in the top five. It may even nudge into pole position.
It’s THAT important.
I know there will be dissenters among you. I accept that, for some, the ‘ick-factor’ is just too high to overcome.
But! – for those of you prepared to experiment, this post is for you. I urge you to increase your intake of liver.
My partner, David, enjoys liver just as much as he enjoys steak
I’m not kidding. He really does.
Did you know that, in general, organ meats are between 10 and 100 times higher in nutrients than corresponding muscle meats. (i)
Even if this statistic was limited to only 10 times higher, that would be enough to encourage me to eat more organ meats.
And when you consider that grass fed dry aged sirloin retails for between AU$57.00 and AU$63.00 per kilo*, and happy lambs fry (liver) is $AU$18.50 per kilo* or happy chook liver is just a little steeper at AU$24.00 per kilo*, I’m hard pressed to find a reason why we shouldn’t aim to eat liver (and other organ meats) at least a couple of times every week. It’s one of my personal AIP goals.
Some people object to consuming liver under the mistaken belief that it is a storage organ for toxins in the body. They are sort of half right, but not about the storage bit…
It is certainly true that one of the liver’s roles is to neutralise toxins that make their way into the body (things like drugs, chemical agents and poisons). But, it doesn’t store these toxins. Rather, if the body can’t eliminate a toxin, they are then more likely to accumulate in the fatty tissues and nervous systems.
Liver also contains loads of important vitamins and minerals, is an outstanding source of Vitamin D, Vitamin B12 (and other B-Vitamins), copper, potassium, magnesium, phosphorous, manganese, and iron, which is in a form that is particularly easily absorbed and used by the body. These nutrients provide the body with some of the tools it needs to get rid of toxins.
“Organ meats are the most concentrated source of just about every nutrient, including important vitamins, minerals, healthy fats and essential amino acids.” – Sarah Ballantyne, PhD
So, why aren’t you eating more liver?
I tend to take a bit of a Masterchef ‘Mystery Box‘ approach to cooking my liver. Bacon and onion feature often. Usually there’s some variety of wilted leafy greens – think spinach, silver-beet or rainbow chard. If David is lucky, I’ll whip up a mash of some description. And, there’ll be a bone broth gravy.
It must be said that Bella, the poodle, loves liver night, too! Raw for her, thank you very much.
In an effort to broaden my liver recipe repertoire and get you eating more liver, I’ve rounded up some of my best suggestions for this nutrient power-house… Today I bring you my AIP liver round up!
Pâté has got to be one of the best ways to increase your liver consumption, I think. It’s tasty. It’s portable. It’s wonderful as a snack smeared onto apple slices, or with the more traditional carrot and celery sticks or cucumber slices..
[Top tip: Pâté freezes remarkably well. Make a double batch and freeze it in little ready-to-serve glass containers or ramekins. They will only take a couple of hours to defrost!]
Poultry Liver Pâté
- My friend, the late Martine – famous around here for her completely unrelated marshmallows – of Eat Heal Thrive offers up two versions of chicken liver pâté recipes. The first is her Chicken Liver Pâté 101 (for those new to liver!) and her Chicken Liver Pâté with Mushrooms and Bacon for the mushy-lovers amongst us.
- If you happen to be low-FODMAPs, Gabriella over at Beyond the Bite has you covered with her Herbed chicken Liver Pâté.
- At a recent Sydney AIP-catch up, one of our regulars brought a large batch of Mickey’s Chicken Liver Mousse. Let’s just say, it didn’t last very long with all those serious nutrient density-lovers around!
- My own contribution to the ‘poultry pate’ selection is strictly AIP Reintroduction, but if you can tolerate butter, it’s dinner-party worthy. Here’s my ‘I Can’t Believe it’s Liver!’ Duck Liver, Thyme and Orange Pâté. And, if you’d like to know the pâté I grew up with (and that my brother, sister and I still request when we go home to Mum!) – here’s My Mum’s WORLD FAMOUS IN NEW ZEALAND Chicken Liver Pâté.
Lamb and Beef Liver Pâté
- While I’ve never actually tried beef liver, I know Kate over at Healing Family Eats has a way with flavour combos – she has a delightful sounding Beef Liver Pate with Basil and Balsamic.
- Beyond the Bite has a second liver pate offering (also low-FODMAPs) with her Asian Beef Liver Pate.
- It has to be said that Mickey’s recipes have never failed me. Head over to Autoimmune Paleo to check out her Bacon-Beef Liver Pate with Rosemary and Thyme.
- And, then there’s this scrummy-looking Beef Liver Pâté with Thyme and Roasted Grapes from Rebecca at Lichen Paleo Lovin AIP.
Poultry Liver Mains
- Eileen from Phoenix Helix offers up her Chicken Liver Fried Rice, and
- Charlotte from Salixisme has ‘Dirty Rice – AIP-Style’, which is chock-full of goodies.
- Kate’s Sautéed Chicken Livers with Riced Cauliflower, Collards and Herbs is one of my go-to recipes when I want to REALLY up the ante on nutrient density (and it tastes bloody fabulous, too).
- I’ve also spotted and bookmarked this number – Warm Chicken Livers with Lacinato, Beet, Ruby Grapefruit + Balsamic Glaze.
- Kate, here-by crowned ‘Queen of the Liver Recipes’, also has the closest version of my ‘Mystery Box approach’ with her much more sophisticated-looking Liver with Bacon, Onions and Collard Greens served with Garlic Cauliflower Mash.
- Sophie from A Squirrel in the Kitchen can always be relied upon to offer a sophisticated Frenchie-take on her recipes (she hails from Belgium, which must be why!). I’ve had my eye on her Balsamic Chicken Livers with Grapes ever since I spotted her post. And then I found this scrummy looking number – Rosemary and Garlic Beef Liver Appetiser. Need I say more?
Hidden Liver Options
There are, of course, secret squirrel** ways to hide liver.
- Healing Family Eats offers up this fabulous drool-worthy Pork and Liver Terrine with Spiced Apple Compote. One of the local AIPers brought it to our most recent picnic and it was my favourite dish of the day.
- I’m partial to adding it to my You Won’t believe it’s Tomato-Free Ragu Bolognese.
- I also make The Paleo Mom’s 50/50/50 Burgers (only I make mine in a muffin pan. They make GREAT snacks on the go)
- Bethany at Adventures in Partaking has a scrummy looking Lamb and Liver Meatballs recipe. Petra, my blogging buddy from way back at BiohackU has her Victorious Offal Muffins – a GREAT lunchbox-filler. And, if that doesn’t tempt you, check out
- Dora’s Hidden Liver Meatballs over at Provincial Paleo.
- A more recent addition are Erin’s Sweet Potato Turkey Meatballs from Real Food & Love. I reckon these look like a great way to sneak some liver onto your kid’s plates.
I really hope this selection encourages you to increase your liver intake!
* Prices from the Feather and Bone – List of Everything
**no relation to Sophie over at A Squirrel in the Kitchen!