Whole 30 Food List: What to Eat and Avoid, and a 7-Day Sample Menu

Since Sports nutritionists Melissa Urban and Dallas Hartwig introduced their Whole30 diet program in 2009, it has changed the lives of thousands worldwide.

As per the creator Dallas Hartwig (everydayhealth), the Whole30 program works as reset button with your health, habits, and relationship with food. For 30 days, you will have to eliminate foods that clinical trials often identify as to be problematic and may increase your cravings and bad food habits, inflammation, blood sugar regulation and adversely affect hormone levels, digestion, and the human immune system.

The creators assure that this diet can help people to get relief from health conditions like skin disease, asthma, allergies, imbalanced hormone levels, indigestion, recurring pain, and other issues.

It is a simple diet mechanism in which you first must eliminate some particular food items over three days. Then you will slowly reintroduce the eliminated foods over ten days to see the changes. Even though it may seem difficult, the procedure is fun and rewarding. So, let's look at what to eat, what to avoid during the whole 30 programs, and a sample menu to help you throughout the journey.

30 days of elimination

What to eat

  • All kinds of vegetables (even potatoes)

  • All fruits (e.g., watermelon, banana, apples, oranges) and berries and fruit juices that have 100% juice content

  • Seafood (fish, oysters, shrimps, mussels, etc)

  • Unprocessed meats of all types and unprocessed eggs

  • Nuts and seeds

  • Olive oil and coconut oil

  • Black coffee

  • Iodized salt

  • Botanic extracts like vinegar (all kinds except synthetic and malt-based vinegar), alcohol- based extracts like lemon, vanilla, or lavender extracts

  • Even though this diet does eliminate milk products, you can eat ghee or clarified butter as it doesn't contain any milk solids.

  • Legumes like green beans and different pears varieties like snow peas, yellow peas, split peas, sugar snap peas, green peas, etc

  • Coconut aminos as the soy sauce substitute

What you cannot eat

  • Processed food − all kinds of processed foods like frozen meat and deli items, ice cream exempt coconut ice cream), premixed foods, restaurant-made food, or anything that can be classified as "junk food"

  • Dairy items − Cow’s or sheep’s or goat’s milk, cheese, kefir, yogurt, frozen yogurt, sour cream, butter, cream, and ice cream except for ghee or clarified butter

  • Legumes − All kinds of beans (red, black, chickpeas, white, kidney, fava, pinto, cannellini, mung, cranberry, black-eyed peas, navy, lima, lentils, all varieties), peanuts and peanut butter and peanut oil, soybeans and soy products like tofu, tempeh, soy sauce, soy protein, soy milk, edamame, etc.) except green beans

  • Alcohol − No alcoholic beverages like beer, champagne, vodka, rum, wine, whiskey, etc., are not allowed

  • Grains − all kinds of grains like wheat, barley, millet, oats, corn, rice, rye, sorghum, sprouted grains, quinoa, amaranth, t buckwheat are not allowed. Any food containing parts of these grains in forms like germ, starch, or bran is also not allowed

  • No artificial sugar − All types of artificial sugar, including processed sugar, maple syrup, raw honey, agave nectar, artificial sweeteners, and products containing any artificial sweeteners

  • Additives − MSG, Sulfites, carrageenan, etc

You also cannot consume any food item or dish that contains any of the items mentioned above in any form as well.

You must also follow another lifestyle rule besides eliminating these items from your regular diet. You should not step on the weighting sale once during the thirty-day interval. As mentioned before, it is not a weight-loss diet but focuses on resetting your physical and mental balance. Hence, do not use any wire rating scale, measuring tape, or any method to analyze your body fat during this time.


After thirty days, it is time to introduce foods into your diet again. You can add the eliminated food groups together or once at a time. You can check out how your body reacts to these food items and decide what suits you.

A sample menu

For many attempting the Whole 30 diet for the first time, the diet may seem impossible due to the wide range of food elimination. But many options are available, and you can eat many delicious dishes these days. Here is the sample of a weeklong menu for you-


  • Day 1 − Vegetable omelet

  • Day 2 − Paleo breakfast casserole

  • Day 3 − Sweet potato with nut butter and one hard-boiled egg

  • Day 4 − Skillet eggs with leafy greens and avocado

  • Day 5 − A smoothie bowl with your favorite fruits and berries

  • Day 6 − Apple, hard-boiled egg, and almond butter or a handful of almond

  • Day 7 − Hard boiled eggs with mashed sausage and sautéed mushrooms


  • Day 1 − Collard wraps with your choice of meat, avocado, and bell pepper

  • Day 2 − Vegetable and chicken sausage frittata with your choice of salad

  • Day 3 − Your choice of stew with meats and vegetables or only vegetables/ soup of your choice

  • Day 4 − Grilled salmon with a salad of cucumber, tomato, and avocado

  • Day 5 − Grilled chicken salad with nuts like pecans or pine nuts

  • Day 6 − Tuna lettuce wrap and a handful of strawberries or any other berries

  • Day 7 − grilled turkey or steak with a side of salad or sautéed veggies and mashed potatoes and green peas


  • Day 1 − Stuffed sweet potatoes with your choice of meat

  • Day 2 − Pork tenderloin with mashed sweet potato or butternut squash

  • Day 3 − Cauliflower fried rice with veggies and shrimp and egg

  • Day 4 − Zucchini noodles with meatballs

  • Day 5 − Scallops with roasted carrots and fennels

  • Day 6 − Baked ribs with WHOLE 30 bbq sauce and a side of cauliflower rice

  • Day 7 − Weekend special lamb chops with a side of mashed potatoes and green peas


There is a wide range of snacks, including berries, your favorite trail mixes with nuts and seeds, fresh fruit, etc.


After the thirty-day interval, you can slowly reintroduce any eliminated food as per your choice, and you will feel the difference after the Whole30 program. You can tweak the meal choices as per the allowed food options.

Updated on: 21-Mar-2023


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