A Stress-Free, SIBO Friendly Holiday

It’s usually the most wonderful time of the year. The holiday season brings families together, particularly around the dinner table, but when you have SIBO, IBS or gut issues in general, what should be a joyous time can be daunting. To help alleviate the stress of the holiday cooking season, we’ve handpicked a selection of our favorite holiday friendly LFE approved recipes from The Good LFE Cookbook.

Each of these recipes follow the Low Fermentation Eating diet and are designed to be SIBO and IBS friendly while being tasty enough for everyone to enjoy and promoting good gut health.


Crab Cakes with Simple Cornichon Remoulade

Almond meal and a few shrimp ground into a sticky paste hold these crab cakes together without overpowering the crab’s natural sweetness. Use the highest quality crab you can and be sure to pick out any shell.

Serves 6-12


Gut Friendly Crab Cakes




  • ¼ pound shrimp, shells removed (about 5–6 large shrimp)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, minced
  • 1 heaping teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning 1 pound crab meat
  • ⅔ cup almond meal
  • Sunflower oil, or grapeseed oil or ghee for frying
  • 10 cornichons, finely minced
  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • ½ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons parsley or chives, minced


  • In the bowl of a food processor or with a knife, chop shrimp finely until it becomes a sticky paste.
  • In a large bowl, mix shrimp paste with egg, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, celery, parsley, and Old Bay Seasoning. Gently fold in crab – taking care to not overmix, or break up large chunks of meat. Sprinkle almond meal on top and gently mix.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of oil or ghee in a large cast iron pan over medium heat. Drop heaping tablespoons of crab cake mixture into pan and gently press tops of mounds to shape into round cakes. Cook for 3–4 minutes or until a dark golden brown before carefully flipping and cooking for another 3 minutes. Place cooked crab cakes on a plate with paper towel.
  • To make remoulade mix minced cornichons with mayonnaise and Old Bay Seasoning.
  • Serve crab cakes with a dollop of remoulade and a sprinkling of minced parsley or chives.

Butternut Squash Sage Soup with Cashew Cream

Simply put, this is autumn in a bowl. 

Serves 8 

SIBO IBS Safe Butternut Squash Soup



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 leeks, washed thoroughly, drained and chopped
  • 20 sage leaves, chopped
  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1" cubes (about 6 cups)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3½ cups chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegans)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Generous pinch each of ground cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and cayenne
  • Sea salt
  • 1 recipe Cashew Sour Cream 
Fried sage leaf garnish:
  • 10 sage leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

     Cashew Sour Cream:

    • 1 1/2 cup cashews, soaked in water overnight, drained, and rinsed
    • 1/4 cup water + more if needed to make creamy
    • 1 tbsp lemon juice
    • 2 tsp rice vinegar
    • 1/4 tsp salt


    • In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add leeks and sage along with a pinch of salt and sauté until tender, about 6 minutes.
    • Add butternut squash, spices, and two generous pinches of salt. Stir and cook until browned around edges. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant.
    • Add the broth, another generous pinch of salt, and black pepper. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer and cook, covered, until the squash is tender, about 30 minutes.
    • While squash is cooking, make the Cashew Sour Cream and set aside. Fry sage leaves in olive oil until crispy, about 3 minutes, then drain on paper towel.
    • Carefully, blend the soup in the pot with immersion blender until creamy adding half of the cashew cream and additional broth or water as necessary. If using a countertop blender, let soup cool for 20 minutes and blend in batches until creamy and return to the pot.
    • Season soup to taste with salt, pepper, and cayenne.
    • Serve soup topped with a dollop of cashew cream and fried sage leaves.

    Cashew Sour Cream Preparation

    • Place all ingredients into the bowl of the food processor or use a high-powered blender like a Vitamix or bullet-style blender. Blend until creamy. In the food processor, blending will take a little more time, so continue for 4-5 minutes, scraping the bowl every couple of minutes. If you find the cream to be too grainy, add water by the tablespoon until it is the desired consistency. Season to taste with lemon juice and salt.


    Skirt Steak with Salsa Verde 

    Skirt steak is a tender, flavorful cut of beef and is simple to cook. It needs only salt, pepper, and a very hot pan—just a few minutes on each side to reach a juicy medium rare. Skirt steak is its most tender when cooked medium rare, so if needed, use a meat thermometer to ensure it doesn’t overcook. Slice against the grain for optimum tenderness. 

    Serves 6-8


    Skirt Steak with Salsa Verde Low Fermentation Eating Approved Recipe


    • 2½ pounds skirt steak (grass-fed), cut in half or quarters if needed to fit in pan

    • Salt and ground black pepper, to taste

    Salsa Verde:

    • 1 bunch each, washed, dried, and finely chopped: parsley, tarragon, mint, and chives
    • ½ teaspoon mustard seed, toasted and ground ½ teaspoon coriander, toasted and ground ½ teaspoon red chili flakes
    • Zest of 2 lemons
    • 2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
    • 1 tablespoon capers or 5 caper berries, finely chopped
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • Olive oil to cover (about 1 cup)


        • Liberally season both sides of the steaks with salt and pepper, about ¼ teaspoon of salt and ten grinds of fresh pepper per side. Preheat a heavy skillet or cast iron pan until very hot, about 4 minutes over high heat. When pan is hot, lay steaks in pan and cook on each side for 3–4 minutes until medium rare. Let rest for 5 minutes before cutting steak into slices—lengthwise against grain. Top with Salsa Verde and crunchy salt to finish.

        • You can also cook on a grill. Just make sure your grill is very hot before cooking.

           Salsa Verde Preparation:

          • Mix all ingredients in a glass pint jar and cover with olive oil. Screw on the lid tightly and give it a good shake to mix it all together. Season to taste. It’s better after it sits for a couple of hours. If refrigerating, leave out for an hour before serving so oil can liquefy. 

          Whole Roasted Chicken 

          Salting the chicken and letting it rest gives it a crispy skin and adds flavor. Starting the roast breast side down keeps the breast meat from drying out. We sometimes roast two chickens at a time to serve six with enough leftovers to add to salads and sandwiches and sautéed with chopped onions for last-minute chicken tacos. 

          Serves 4-6


          Low Fermentation Eating Approved Whole Roasted Chicken Recipe


          • 1 whole, pasture raised chicken, 4–6 pounds
          • 1 tablespoon salt
          • Handful of sage leaves, chopped 1 tablespoon thyme, chopped
          • ½ tablespoon paprika
          • Ground black pepper
          • 3 carrots, cut into 1" pieces
          • 3 celery stalks, cut into 1" pieces 3 potatoes, cut into 1" pieces
          • 1 red onion, cut 1" pieces
          • Head of garlic, cloves separated and peeled
          • Olive oil
          • 1 lemon, cut in half
          • A few whole thyme and sage sprigs


            • Season chicken inside and out with salt, herbs, paprika, and pepper. Refrigerate overnight or let sit at room temperature for 1 hour. If refrigerating, let rest at room temperature for 1 hour before roasting.

            • Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Place vegetables and half of the garlic in bottom of roasting pan, toss with a light coating of olive oil and season with a few large pinches of salt and pepper. Place lemon halves, the remaining half of garlic, and herb sprigs inside of the chicken then roast breast side down for 45 minutes. Flip chicken so breast side is up and roast for another 20–30 minutes until skin is crisp and thigh meat is no longer pink and juices run clear.


            Roasted Delicata Slices with Warm Spices 

            Every time I make this I’m asked what the trick is for making this squash so tasty. Delicata squash is just that good all on it’s own. All it needs is salt, olive oil, and an oven hot enough to get it nice and crisp. If the pan isn’t too crowded, the squash will crisp on both sides without flipping it over. Or, if you are using a couple sheet pans and it’s steaming rather than crisping, it’s easy enough to flip the slices with a wide spatula and turn oven to broil for two minutes to make it crispy.

            Dress it up for a dinner party with Salsa Verde and crunchy roasted squash seeds or just top with flaky salt. Usually half of a medium-sized squash per person is sufficient and will provide plenty to snack on before it makes it to the table. Depending on how hungry your guests are, you might have some leftovers.

            Bonus snack: Pick the seeds out of the squash pith, roast with a little salt at 350°F (180°C) for 20 minutes or until they are toasty brown. Give them a stir and a shake halfway through.

            Serves 4


            Roasted Delicata Squash with Warm Spices LFE Recipe


            • 2 squash, cut in ½, seeds removed, sliced into ¼" thick half moons
            • ½ teaspoon of warm spices— cinnamon, coriander, garam masala, or ras el hanout in any preferred proportions to equal ½ teaspoon
            • Generous pour of olive oil
            • Salt


              • Preheat oven to 450°F (230°C). Toss everything in a big bowl and lay out on a single layer on a parchment-lined sheet pan. Bake for 20 minutes. If both sides are not browning, flip over and place under broiler for 3 minutes until edges are dark and bubbly. 

              Creamy Mashed Potatoes 

              A basic, creamy mashed potato recipe that can be played with to your liking. We love the creaminess the cashew cream adds, and the olive oil can be replaced with butter or ghee; other options can be added based on what you are serving.

              Serves 6


              Low Fermentation Eating Approved Mashed Potato Recipe


              • 4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
              • ¼ cup chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegans) + more as needed
              • Salt
              • Ground white pepper
              • 1 half recipe Cashew Sour Cream (recipe above)
              • ⅓ cup olive oil
              • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
              Optional Additions:
              • ½ cup chopped chives
              • 10 cloves roasted garlic
              • 2 tablespoons chopped thyme


                • Cut potatoes in half and cover with cold water in a large pot. Starting the potatoes in cold water helps them to cook evenly all the way through. Heavily salt the water and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower heat to medium and cook 25–30 minutes, until potatoes can be easily pierced by a fork.
                • While potatoes are cooking, make the Cashew Sour Cream.
                • Warm broth in a small pot.
                • Drain potatoes and let them sit in pot over low heat to allow any excess moisture to evaporate. Slowly add olive oil and three large pinches salt while mashing, still over low heat. Add cashew cream, nutritional yeast, and gradually add stock, continue to mash until they are creamy and fluffy. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

                Flourless Chocolate Raspberry Torte

                The base of this recipe is a luxurious flourless chocolate cake - already a fantastic cake, but I had a couple pints of berries calling my name.  I made a quick jam and voila, an easy bright summer twist on this lush flourless chocolate cake.  You can also add a little of this jam to your morning toast with ghee and crunchy salt.

                Serves 8-10


                Flourless Chocolate Torte Gut Friendly Dessert


                Raspberry Jam:
                • 2 cups raspberries
                • 1/3 cup organic cane sugar
                • Juice of 1 lemon


                • 3/4 cup coconut oil
                • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
                • 4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
                • 5 large eggs, separated
                • 3/4 cup sugar
                • 2 tablespoons of the Raspberry Jam
                • 1/2 teaspoon salt


                  • To make the jam, mash berries, lemon juice and sugar in a small saucepan with a potato masher until it turns into a raspberry sugar slush.  Cook over low heat, stirring every few minutes until the mixture thickens, about 15 minutes. 
                  • For the torte, use parchment paper to line the bottom and sides of a greased 9” springform pan. Preheat over to 350 F.
                  • Melt the coconut oil with the chocolate, salt, and jam in the top of a double boiler and let cool.
                  • While chocolate mixture is cooling, beat the egg yolks with the sugar until they become pale yellow. Mix the cooled coconut oil and chocolate mixture with the sugar and yolks. In a clean bowl, beat the egg whites until they are stiff, but not dry. Gently fold into the chocolate mixture until just mixed together. It’s okay if there are still a few white streaks in mixture, the important part is to make sure the egg whites stay nice and fluffy.
                  • Gently pour better into lined pan, smoothing top with spatula before putting in oven. Place a pan of water on the bottom shelf to help keep the torte from drying out. Bake batter in center of oven for 40-45 minutes, rotating pan after 20 minutes. When finished, the top will be puffed and slightly cracked. Remove from the oven and let cake rest for 15 minutes before unmolding and carefully peeling off the parchment paper. Carefully slide cake onto cake stand and let cool.
                  • As the cake cools the center will fall, this is normal and makes for a nice center to fill with jam. When cooled, spread jam over the middle of the cake and dot edge with whole raspberries. Refrigerate for 1 hour until set.


                  Lemon, Ginger & Thyme Vodka Cocktail  

                  Have this brisk and flavorful syrup at-the-ready for entertaining. Lemon, thyme, and ginger —three distinct flavors that mix surprisingly well together. Serve chilled or as a hot toddy.

                  Serves 8


                  Gut Friendly Cocktail Recipes Lemon Ginger Thyme Vodka


                  • Lemon juice
                  • Vodka
                  • Ice Cubes


                  • ½ cup honey
                  • ½ cup water
                  • 3" piece ginger, sliced thin
                  • 10 thyme sprigs



                    • To make syrup place honey, water, ginger, and thyme in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes. Let cool for 20–25 minutes and strain. Add enough water to replace water that evaporated during simmering to bring syrup to 1 cup.
                    FOR A CHILLED DRINK:
                    • In a cocktail glass, fill with ice, add 1½ ounces vodka, 1 ounce syrup, and 1 ounce lemon juice then stir.
                    • If making a large batch of drinks, you can mix 1 cup syrup, 1 cup lemon juice, and 1½ cups vodka.
                    FOR A HOT TODDY-STYLE DRINK:
                    • Warm syrup. In a mug, add 2 ounces vodka, 1½ ounces syrup, 1½ ounces lemon juice, and hot water to taste.

                    Discover additional SIBO friendly meals, and hundreds of other recipes in The Good LFE Cookbook. 

                    Good LFE Coookbook for SIBO, IBS and Gut Health

                    Discover Hundreds of LFE Recipes in The Good LFE Cookbook

                    Packed with delicious, fresh and easy-to-execute recipes, our cookbook opens up a new world of eating options for anyone contending with SIBO, IBS or other gut health issues. Every recipe follows Low Fermentation Eating and is designed to maintain your microbiome balance and bring back the joy of eating.