With its heavy use of soy and peanuts, Thai food takes some manipulating to make it fit the paleo eating template. Fortunately, coconut aminos and sunflower seed butter make terrific substitutes!
This recipe is not an exact recreation of any specific Thai dish, but instead a riff on the flavors I love from that region. I had some beef short ribs in the freezer that were calling my name on a hot summer day so I decided the best way to tackle them without heating up the kitchen was to use my much loved Instant Pot and cook them under pressure.
Toss some zucchini noodles with the extra sauce for a dish reminiscent of sesame noodles and place the beef pieces on top for a complete meal!
Notes on ingredients:
You can find coconut aminos is health food stores and even some regular grocery stores now – look for it next to the soy sauce. You can also purchase it online.
Most sunflower seed butter formulations do include some sugar. If you need to strictly avoid sugar, be sure to find one that does not, such as the organic version of this brand.
Notes for healing diets:
- Paleo Autoimmune Protocol (AIP): Sesame and sunflower seed butter are not compliant, but are stage 2 reintroduction. Red pepper flakes are a nightshade spice and are a stage 4 reintroduction, but can be omitted.
- Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD): Coconut aminos is not legal. Consider using this soy sauce alternative instead.
- Low-FODMAP: Omit the garlic cloves and use a garlic infused oil instead of the toasted sesame oil.
Thai Short Ribs with Sunbutter Sauce Recipe
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
- 2 pounds bone-in beef short ribs
- 1 medium leek, white and pale green parts only, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- ⅔ cup bone broth
- ⅓ cup coconut aminos
- 2 tablespoons sunflower seed butter
- 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
- Season short ribs generously with salt.
- Press "saute" on Instant Pot and add oil. When hot, add short ribs and brown on all sides (about 8 minutes), turning occasionally.
- Remove short ribs and set aside.
- Add leeks, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes to now empty pot. Cook, stirring constantly, about 3 minutes or until softened and beginning to brown.
- Stir in broth and sunflower seed butter, scraping up any browned bits. Add sunflower seed butter and stir to combine.
- Return short ribs to pot, arranging so the bone is on top and most of the meaty part is submerged in the liquid.
- Lock lid and press "manual" then set time for 50 minutes.
- After cooking is complete, allow pressure to naturally release for about 20 minutes, then release any remaining pressure and open lid.
- Remove meat, cut off bone and thinly slice.
- Strain solids out of sauce and discard.
- Serve meat with sauce over zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice.
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