Join us for October Unprocessed 2015

This is the second time I’ve signed up to take part in October Unprocessed, an annual challenge to eat real food organized by blogger Andrew over at Eating Rules. And it’s the first year my husband is fully on board. I hope you will be too – just head on over to sign up (on your own terms).

My hubbie Mike eating Taco Bell

My husband Mike eating Taco Bell. I hate to be a spoilsport but I don’t believe Taco Bell counts as “unprocessed”.

I love this challenge because, as anyone who has tried to reduce their reliance on processed food knows, it’s difficult! So this month is motivation to eat restaurant food less, try new recipes, seek out new foods, and push forward with a focused burst of momentum.

Cheese packet for Kraft Dinner "Smart"

In 2013, when I tried this challenge for the first time, I hit some major roadblocks. By outlining them here I hope to get myself on track for this year while hopefully letting someone else learn from my experiences:

  1. I didn’t meal-plan enough.
    If you don’t shop for the right ingredients, it’s nearly impossible to just throw something together for dinner on a weeknight. And you won’t know what ingredients to shop for unless you give some thought to what you want to – and can – eat. Plus, some aspects of being “unprocessed” call for hands-on time in the kitchen. If I want burritos Tuesday, I have to soak and cook the beans on Monday. Last time, I just didn’t plan far enough ahead.
  2. I didn’t get my whole family on board.
    My aunt and uncle did participate, making Thanksgiving dinner (and dessert!) easier. But my husband, Mike (who does more than half the cooking) didn’t buy in, which led to some conflicts around suppertime when he wanted to make something that didn’t fit my rules.
  3. I didn’t tell my friends and colleagues, leading to far too much temptation (and possibly some hurt feelings) when I didn’t eat chocolate chip cookies at coffee break.

In case you can’t see the theme here, I’m pretty sure it’s that I didn’t plan ahead enough and I didn’t share what I was doing with those close to me. Of course not everyone will be on board; I do have Thanksgiving and Halloween to contend with this month. But I’ll do some more thinking about those “deliberate exceptions” in the next post.

In T-minus two days the fun begins! Who’s with me? 😉



  1. Yay! So glad you and Mike are joining in.

    And yes, Taco Bell is TOTALLY processed… Just check out the ingredients in their flour tortillas (as one example):

    Enriched wheat flour, water, vegetable shortening (soybean, hydrogenated soybean and/or cottonseed oil), sugar, salt, leavening (baking soda, sodium acid pyrophophate), molasses, dough conditioner (fumaric acid, distilled monoglycerides, enzymes, wheat starch, calcium carbonate), calcium propionate, sorbic acid, and/or potassium sorbate



  1. […] read my previous post you’ll know my husband and I (and by extension, baby P, of course!) have pledged to be “unprocessed” this October as part of the October Unprocessed Challenge. You can still sign up to take part on your own […]

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