That Time I ate my way through New Orleans and Alabama + Clean, Grain Free, Gluten Free, Vegetarian Pho

Monday, June 29, 2015

I had a work conference in New Orleans last week and thought I'd have all the time in the world to catch up on blog stuff, eat healthy, have some quality time for myself... not so much. Not at all actually. It was an amazing time though! It was my first time in NOLA - Harrison flew down on the last day of the conference and some of my friends from Florida came up for a few days on the town. Then we drove to Alabama to see Harrison's family and hit Grady, Montgomery and Birmingham (sadly we were just there for a minute, I was praying for some downtime to finally have a drink with my blog crush Nadine but it was non stop).

For New Orleans I highly recommend every single restaurant we stopped at in NOLA but my favorites were Charbroiled Oysters @ Drago's (I don't even do oysters), ghost tour with Free Tours by Foot, and Frenchman Street. My fav stops in Birmingham: The Purple Onion (Harrison has been talking about this restaurant since we met) and Kelly Ingram Park. Here are some highlights:

Bourbon Street!

Maison on Frenchman Street

Harrison's Grandma Pearl had this food waiting for us when we arrived to her house (no cell service, no internet, no neighbors. Quite different from DC life!)

Exploring his grandma's property - Harrison spent summers here!

Boppin around the farm

And now it's back to the real world womp.

Before I left for the conference I attempted some pho. Let me start by explaining that I once had  Vietnamese co-workers who introduced me to this incredible dish, but who also always ordered for me (in Vietnamese) and I have never been able to re-order or re-create the exact dish. It's not quite paleo (rice noodles, sorry) but it is super healthy and super super delicious. Mine was also a little heartier/less soupy than your average pho but I loooved it.

Servings: 5
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins


  • 1 head broccoli, chopped into florets ($2.50)
  • 1 12 oz package of snow peas ($2.00)
  • 32 oz broth ($1.50) 
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 package pho / rice noodles (I found mine at Wal-Mart! - $2)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped ($1)
  • 1 jalapeno, sliced and seeded ($1)
  • 8 oz sliced mushrooms ($1.80) (I used a package from Wal-Mart also)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon minced onion
  • Serve with fresh basil, fresh cilantro, and sririacha sauce

Cook the noodles according to the package directions (I just put mine in a covered bowl of water and let it set for 20 mins. Too easy).

Combine the broth, water, onion, salt, garlic and broccoli in a pot and bring to a boil, then let simmer for 15 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and let simmer for another 5-10 minutes. Serve with the basil, cilantro, hot sauce, or anything else your heart desires!

Do you like pho? Do you make your own? What is your favorite New Orleans stop?? 


  1. I have never eaten pho!! I have heard good things about it though! It sounds absolutely delicious.
    I also have never been to New Orleans! It's on my list. We're driving to Gulf Shores in August and it's only a three hour drive to NOLA, but we will already be driving 13 hours to Alabama and Matt was not impressed when I suggested we squeeze it in also😆

  2. I've been meaning to try pho.... Glad you had a great time! NOLA is such a fun city!

  3. I really want to go to New Orleans for the food! I heard some not so good things about Bourbon Street! ;) I have never eaten Pho, i'd have to have someone experienced order for me.

  4. Looks like a great little vacay. I love NOLA, need to get back there someday soon! I have never had Pho, looks yummy though!!!

  5. I cannot believe you were so close to me!!!! The Purple Onion is decent choice...but there is so much more to see!!! Haha! Next time. We have a place here that is actually called Pho. I have been meaning to get over there but I haven't been yet. Hope you have a great week!

  6. i have never had pho! i have only been to NOLA once, would love to go again!

  7. Lyndsay,
    I enjoyed reading your post and the pics, but I am in love with Pho . Your pho is just the way I like it- vegetarian and gluten free. Doesn't get better than that! Nola is on my bucket list!

  8. nola is my fave city in the US. the best food i've eaten was there!

  9. Yum, I LOVE pho. We had the most awesome pho place downtown with the cutest little Vietnamese man, until he had to close up and leave for a family issue. I cried a little.

  10. Loved all you pics from the weekend. I've never made Pho before... hmmm haven't had it in awhile...due for a bowl.

  11. What a fun trip!! I can honestly say I've never even tried pho... I need to check this out lol!

  12. FROWNS all AROUNDJuly 2, 2015 at 9:25 AM

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  13. I'm still surprised there are places where cell service doesn't exist! That home cooking looks delicious! I'm hoping to go to New Orleans in December! Will definitely be checking out Frenchman Street! Let me know if you have any otehr recommendations too!

  14. I have never had pho! I need to try it though. Love the pics!


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