Frequently Asked Questions


Q. What disease do you have? How do you manage it and how did you get healthy.

A. Please read my full health transformation post HERE and then read the follow-up post HERE.


Q. When you call for coconut milk in a recipe, do you use the can or the carton in the refrigerated section?

A. I always use full-fat coconut milk from the can, unless otherwise noted. The type in the carton is designed to be a beverage and shelf-stable, thus requiring a ton of additives and stripping the good fat and nutrients that come from the whole coconut milk in the can. Natural Value brand is BPA-free and also does not contain any guar-gum. I also use Native Forest or Whole Food’s Organic 365 brand.


Q. What type of almond flour do you use? Is it the same as almond meal?

A. I always use a blanched, finely ground almond flour. My favorites are Honeyville Farms and WellBee. Bob’s Redmill is too coarse and will cause soggy baked goods. Almond meal is different from almond flour as it contains skins and is typically more coarsely ground. I find that almond meal is good for breading things but not good for baked goods. For more information on Almond Flour, Click Here.


Q. Can I substitute coconut flour for the almond flour in recipes?

A. No, coconut flour is much more absorbent and will call for a different ratio than the almond flour. I suggest you stick to recipes that are developed specially for only using coconut flour.


Q. Can I substitute other nut flours for the almond flour?

A. Yes, as long as they are blanched and very finely ground. I suggest macadamia or cashew flour for the most similar results.


Q. I cannot eat nuts, is there a good alternative to the almond flour in your recipes?

A. Finely ground and sifted sunflower seeds are a great sub and sunflower butter for almond/cashew butter. You will need to cut the baking soda in the recipe by half and add 2x the amount of cream of tarter to add an acidic ingredient to keep it from turning green from the chlorophyl (see this article) So if the recipe calls for 1tsp of baking soda, do 1/2 tsp baking soda + 1 tsp cream of tarter.


Q. What is palm shortening and what is a good substitute?

A. Palm shortening is derived from palm oil and is not hydrogenised, and contains no trans fats. I use palm shortening as a butter substitute in my baked goods recipes. It has a firm texture and a high melting point, creating fluffy and cake-like delights. Be sure to purchase this oil from sustainable and eco-friendly sources, such as Tropical Traditions or Spectrum (labeled Vegetable Shortening). Unsalted grass-fed butter may be used as a substitute if you can tolerate dairy.


Q. Is there a difference between coconut sugar and coconut crystals?

A. Palm sugar, coconut sugar, and coconut crystals can be used interchangeably. They are produced from the sap of the flower buds of the coconut palm tree. They have been used as a traditional sweetener for thousands of years and have a very low glycemic index. You can find it at Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, or even Costco. See my favorite brand here.


Q. You talk about SCD a lot. What is it and what is the difference between SCD and Paleo?

A. SCD stands for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. Read more about it on the Breaking the Vicious Cycle website. The diets are very similar, but there are some significant differences. I followed the SCD for a couple of years before realizing that I needed to limit certain types of dairy, all legumes, and focus on consuming pasture raised meats.

Suggested Reading: Practical Paleo Diane Sanfilippo and The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf and Loren Cordain



Suggested Reading: Breaking the Vicious Cycle: Intestinal Health Through Diet by Elaine Gloria Gottschall


Q. You say you are Paleo, but I still you see you post recipes and photos using dairy. Is it ok to eat dairy?

A. I believe that there is no 1-fits-all diet and that everyone needs to access where you are at in their healing journey and how your individual body reacts to certain foods. I eliminated dairy for quite a few months before being able to add it back into my diet in moderation. We enjoy goat cheese and raw, organic cow’s milk cheese from time to time. I personally cannot tolerate milk or cream in any form and keep the cheese to a 3 times a week maximum.


Q. Can I substitute almond butter or sunbutter for the cashew butter in some of your recipes?

A. Yes, but the texture, color and flavor will all vary.


Q. What type of supplements do you take?

A. I cannot legally provide any medical information, including my supplement list. My naturopath, Dr. Melody Wong, did a series of posts on gut health and naturopathy which you can find overall supplement information. Read those posts by Clicking Here. I strongly suggest finding an ND in your area if you struggle with any intestinal issues and are not seeing full relief from your diet changes.


Q. Where can I hear more of your story?

A. I have appeared on many television shows and podcasts to share more of my story in depth. You can view or hear them here. I also write a lot about my health journey in both of my cookbooks which you can find here.


Don’t see your question or the answer you need? Email Me and I’ll add it to the list!

  • Suzi B.

    My hubby has recently been diagnosed with grain allergies, nightshade allergies, and coconut allergy.

    Any suggestions on substitute for coconut flour? Would tapioca work?

    • Against All Grain

      I’ve heard the arrowroot starch is a good 1:1 substitute.

  • Leah

    Hi Danielle,
    Thank you for your wonderful recipes– and the book is laid out beautifully!
    Some of your recipes call for wine. Can you recommend an apt alcohol-free substitute?

    • Against All Grain

      There are some alcohol free wines available that you could try.

  • Michele

    Hi Danielle-
    Just bought your cookbook and started transitioning to paleo this weekend. So far I love the food. I just made your pumpkin spice muffins and they smell heavenly but they did not “pour” into the pan. They were more like cookie dough. I am sure they will taste just fine but wondering if I did anything wrong??

  • Do you find it difficult going out to eat? How do you ensure you avoid food sensitivities at restaurants?

  • Have you tried the anyhony’s blanched almond flour? It is priced better and for a five lb bag, and free shipping at Amazon, it brings it down to 7.59 a pound. Honeyville and Digestive Wellness run just under 10.00 per pound. I’m also considering switching to regular rather than organic eggs for my breads. at 5 eggs per loaf, that gets pretty expensive.