Fantastic Wallace Farms Products

Friday might normally be a re-cap of my most fantastic finds online, but today I’m sharing the most fantastic Wallace Farms products. These are our staples! If you missed it, be sure to check out yesterday’s post about Wallace Farms Quality and why we choose Wallace as our family farm of choice.

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Remember, if you’ve never ordered from Wallace Farms, it’s super easy! Register online, order during the open window (NOW for West Des Moines/Waukee), pay online or at pick-up, pick your order up the following week. (Note: register and order before Sunday, Oct. 26, for pick up next week in Waukee and West Des Moines.)

Pick-up happens at 10 locations across Iowa and 3 in Illinois. Click the nearest location for the order and pick-up schedule at each location.

Also note that NOW is the time to buy your Thanksgiving Turkey! This is a great way to spread the gift of clean eating to your family this holiday.

Curious what to order? Here are the Wise household favorites:

Ground Beef: Obviously, an incredibly versatile meat. We use this for tacos, meatballs, meatloaf, burgers, and spaghetti, just to name a few.

Bacon Burger Patties:  The perfect mixture of beef and uncured bacon. Heaven! These were a staple in the house this summer. The kids cheer when it’s burger night!

Hot Dogs: The kids like beef and Justin prefers pork. I like them because they aren’t filled with crazy weird ingredients, so I don’t cringe feeding them to the kids. They literally jump up and down when they see a Wallace Farms hot dog package!

Steaks: Justin’s favorites are the Skirt Steak and New York Strip. He tells me they are “super tasty!”

Ribs: We recently ordered a rack of ribs that Justin smoked. The meat literally fell of the bone. They were perfection!

Ground Breakfast Sausage: Now that Finn can eat eggs (HALLELUJAH!), his breakfast of choice is sausage and eggs. To mix it up every so often we will use Ground Italian Sausage, which is also great in dinner meals.

Bacon: Need I say more? Some of the best bacon we’ve ever had. It’s thick, so flavorful and not filled with disgusting nitrates.

Bratwust: Another summer staple in our house, these Brats are so thick and juicy. There is no MSG and the casings are gluten-free. Buns are totally unnecessary for these babies.

Turkey Sausage, Roasted Red Pepper & Garlic: These were a Whole30 staple for me earlier this year. You can’t go wrong here. They are a great way to change things up, too.

Ground Turkey: Similar to the ground beef options, we rotate between ground turkey and beef in our dinners.

Whole Chicken: Last week I followed the 100 Days of Real Food cookbook recipe and placed the whole, thawed chicken in the crockpot all day. Overnight I used the remains to make homemade chicken stock (recipe from the same cookbook). We used the stock in homemade chicken and rice soup this week. So much win! The meat, particularly the dark meat by the bone, was incredible.

Shrimp: The Wallace Farms shrimp are no shrimps! These are hearty shrimp that are scrumptious! (These, of course, come from beyond Iowa borders, but they are USA wild caught shrimp.)

Last, but never least…. Nick’s Sticks! While we’re not picky, we especially love the turkey and spicy turkey. Can’t lose with a Nick’s Sticks in hand! 

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By the way, Evie calls these her “meat sticks.” I honestly have to hide them from her. It’s maddening how much she loves these… even more than she did in Sept. 2013!

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Wallace Farms also offers roasts, tenderloins, ham, lamb and even pet food. After all, why shouldn’t your pet eat as clean as you?

If you can’t tell, we’re big fans in this house, not only because of the quality of meat, but the heart and commitment it takes an Iowa farmer to do things differently here…. to do things the right way. I’m honored to support Wallace Farms and share with you what they are doing to bring quality back to the land.

Be sure to register and order your Thanksgiving turkey soon!

Have you switched to grass-fed beef and other clean meat options? What have you noticed, experienced or learned?

 

Wallace Farms Quality

When Justin and I were first married (and in my bachelorette days), we were eating whatever meat I picked up from the grocery store.  I based “health” on the percentage of fat in the meat.  Was it 80/20, 93/7?  I honestly had no idea what I was doing or what anything on the labels actually meant.

Fast forward a few years when our family embarked on this allergy-friendly, real-food journey. As with all labels, I realized there had to be something to what was on meat labels, and sure enough – there was lots learn! Grass-fed, grain-fed, nitrate-free, gluten-free, antibiotic-free…. so many confusing labels!

After much research, we quickly realized the health benefits of grass-fed beef (over grain-fed) and the benefits of supporting local farmers.  In Iowa, the land of GMO corn and soy, I knew I had to do some digging.  One of the first local farmers I came across was Wallace Farms.

Over the years we purchased meat from a variety of Iowa grass-fed farmers, but we always came back to Wallace Farms. (This post back in 2012 talks about ways to find local farmers. We had been using Wallace for sometime at this point.)

The Wallace Farms cattle eat nothing but grass and hay and are never given additives, synthetic growth hormones or antibiotics. Rather, these cattle eat what Mother Nature designed their bodies to digest – grass – nothing more and nothing less.

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Wallace Farms pays attention to soil, grass quality, animal care, and processing. This perfected process really does come through when you’ve tasted other grass-fed beef. Some other grass-fed beef might have a different texture or odor that can be unappealing. We’ve never experienced this with any Wallace Farms product.

For more about the Wallace Farms quality, check out Wallace Farms – How We’re Different. I learned a lot reading this, particularly about how the stress of an animal can impact taste. Fascinating!

Over the years we’ve been able to enjoy most of Wallace Farms offerings.  In fact, I kind of get silly-excited when it’s pick-up day!  Just look at that BEAUTY…

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The meat comes frozen, so I take it right downstairs to our deep freeze once we get home. Our pick-up location is about 8 minutes from our house.

If you’ve never ordered from Wallace Farms, it’s super easy! Register online, order during the open window (NOW for West Des Moines/Waukee), pay online or at pick-up, and pick your order up the following week. (Note: register and order before Sunday, Oct. 26, for pick up next week in Waukee and West Des Moines.)

Pick-up happens at 10 locations across Iowa and 3 in Illinois. Click the nearest location for the order and pick-up schedule for each location.

Also note that NOW is the time to buy your Thanksgiving Turkey! This is a great way to spread the gift of clean eating to your family this holiday.

Curious what to order? Join me tomorrow for my favorite Wallace Farms products.  In the meantime, check them out online and set up your profile so you’re ready to order when your window opens.

Pumpkin Picking with the Kids

We spent our 4th fall picking pumpkins as a family at Wills Family Orchard this weekend.

During our first visit in 2011, we were still a family of 3.

Evie was an unhappy peanut in 2012. It was chilly and she’s missed a nap.

Last year we visited twice: to pick apples and to pick pumpkins. Those pictures just one year ago blow my mind. Evie’s hair is SO short and she looks so small!

So much can change in the matter of year.

One thing that doesn’t change is our love for this land. We visited another orchard a few weeks ago and we all walked away saying there was just no comparison. Wills Family Orchard remains our family fall spot!

It was the perfect chilly fall morning.  Our previous plans with friends fell through so we took the surprise open morning to do something we love.

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Evie, in classic Evie style, wanted to pick what she wore. The tutu is an infant picture tutu that my friend Jennie was going to donate to Goodwill. Evie saw it and GAME OVER. She wears this thing like it’s attached to her skin: mall, grocery shopping, and now pumpkin picking. To each their own!

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It was a chilly morning, perfect for wearing all things fun. Like mother like daughter :)

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Finn was very into picking this year. He ran through the vines looking for the perfect pumpkin for each of us.  He was all in helping Justin cut them away from the vine and desperately wanted to lift the pumpkins into the wagon. Maybe next year since he and Justin found a TWENTY-EIGHT-POUND beast. They were so proud. Like father like son :)

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After a brief bonding moment…

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… we were off with our loot!

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But not before stopping to look at the gourds. This is often my favorite spot. I love the shapes and colors!

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I loaded the pumpkins up the vehicle while Justin and the kids made their way through the corn maze. Justin asked before going in, “now, am I going to get lost?”

Thankfully they made it out and met me in the Country Store where we picked up our fair share of organic apples, fresh made jams, local honey, and Apple Cider Donuts.  The kids LOVE these donuts, as do J and I. We were able to chat a little with Maury Wills, “Farmer Wills” as Finn calls him.  He is a good man and has raised a great family. Supporting his family by visiting the orchard is well worth your time this fall.

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Once the donuts were gobbled, Evie demanded an apple. Happy to comply, my dear…

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After a visit down the way to visit the chickens and goats, we headed home to put our favorite fall finds on the porch.

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It is officially fall in the Wise house. Nothing better! What are your fall traditions?