Healthy, low-cost dishes to make you smile

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Berry Filling Breakfast Smoothie

Berry Filling Breakfast Smoothie

Some people are just not breakfast people. No matter how hard they try the idea of food in the morning does not work for them. While this isn’t true of me – I get it. But there’s no reason why they should lose out on […]

Free From Everything Healthy Chocolate Brownie Muffins

Free From Everything Healthy Chocolate Brownie Muffins

Okay, now brace yourself, these chocolate muffins are (deep breath) egg-free, fat-free, dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, nut-free, but definitely NOT flavour free! There is a good reason they are called Free From Everything Healthy Chocolate Brownie Muffins you see! I know what you’re thinking, what do […]

Cauliflower, Spinach and Lentil Curry

Cauliflower, Spinach and Lentil Curry

Curries are my go-to when I have random veggies to use up, lots of friends to visit or need to meal-prep some lunches in the freezer. I know a lot of people are scared of making their own curies from scratch and the list of ingredients can look daunting, but once you have bought a few basic spices you are good to go. It’s such a cheap and easy way of making flavourful food and best of all it tastes better the next day!

I’m not the world’s biggest cauliflower fan so this is a great way of making it tasty. The lentils add some oomph and also protein to keep you feeling fuller for longer and the spinach ups the iron content too. By making the spices and onions into a sauce the flavour is really concentrated into the veggies and it makes it more palatable for kids too.

Whether you serve it with rice or an Indian style bread, in a wrap or even on a baked sweet potato, it’s a fab way to get more veggies on your plate.

Cauliflower, Spinach and Lentil Curry

September 17, 2018
: 6
: 5 min
: 30 min

By:

Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp ghee or coconut oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 15 dried curry leaves
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes in juice
  • 250g uncooked red lentils
  • 600g cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 250g spinach
  • Salt and pepper
Directions
  • Step 1 Melt the oil and when hot add the onions. Soften with the lid on for around 5mins until cooked.
  • Step 2 Add all the spices and fry off for a minute or so, if you need to add a tiny bit more fat to do this. Remove from the heat.
  • Step 3 Pour in the chopped tomatoes and their juice then blend together until you get a sloppy paste. Return to the pan and fill the tomato tin with water to rinse and add this to the pan too so you have a sauce.
  • Step 4 Add the lentils and cauliflower, cover and cook together on a medium heat for 20mins.
  • Step 5 Add the rinsed spinach and stir through the lentils and cauliflower. Cover again and cook for 5-10mins until all everything is soft.
  • Step 6 Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.
Pineapple and Ginger Energy Balls

Pineapple and Ginger Energy Balls

Having a naturally sweet energy ball at the ready in your fridge is brilliant if you are trying to cut down on your chocolate and candy intake – by filling up on the good stuff you won’t crave the rubbish! And the great thing about […]

Seed and Fruit Flapjacks

Seed and Fruit Flapjacks

Flapjacks are such a great bake – they can be made with minimal utensils, take minutes to put together and are pretty adaptable to the ingredients you have and like. Made right they can be a nutritional powerhouse but many off-the-shelf versions are packed with […]

Mango and Raspberry Overnight Oats

Mango and Raspberry Overnight Oats

This is an easy way to meal prep your breakfast so you can grab and go or serve up something which looks a bit special on a weekend – but still allows you time for a lay in! These Mango and Raspberry Overnight Oats not only taste like a little bit of sunshine, they will also give you a sustaining and nourishing start to the day. You will have already ticked off two portions of fruit before lunch too.

The chia content in this breakfast give health benefits but not the chia pudding texture some people just don’t like. And by soaking the seeds you make them easier to digest and the nutrients are more readily absorbed and assimilated in your body.

Choose gluten-free oats if you wish and a milk and yoghurt which best works for your diet, non-dairy milks work brilliantly. Personally I find the sweetness of the fruits enough but feel free to drizzle over maple syrup or honey to suit your tastes.

This is a brilliant breakfast to pack up in pots for work and save you time in the morning – and it costs a fraction of what you would spend if you bought one in a coffee shop on the way. In fact each portion comes in at around 40pence, so you can make four for less than the price of one bought out. Quick, easy, cheap and healthy – what are you waiting for!

Mango and Raspberry Overnight Oats

August 25, 2018
: 4
: Easy

By:

Ingredients
  • 1 cup mango pulp (same as a drained tin of mango blitzed)
  • 1 ½ cup milk (of your choice)
  • 1 cups oats
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 2 cups frozen raspberries
  • 4 heaped teaspoons yoghurt or Skyr
  • A handful of flaked almonds
  • Optional honey or maple syrup
Directions
  • Step 1 Mix the mango pulp, milk, oats and chia in a bowl or mixing jug.
  • Step 2 In 4 glasses or containers divide one cup of frozen raspberries between them.
  • Step 3 Layer over the berries half the oats mixture.
  • Step 4 Layer the remaining cup of berries over the oats.
  • Step 5 Use the rest of the oats to cover the berries and refrigerate for 8hrs or overnight.
  • Step 6 To serve add a dollop of yoghurt or Skyr and some flaked almonds. Drizzle over some maple syrup or honey if you like a sweeter breakfast.

Peach and Mango Coconut Ice

Peach and Mango Coconut Ice

For so many of us Coconut Ice is a taste of childhood. But the fact that traditionally it’s packed with sugar isn’t something many of us want in our diets now. So why not try this healthy, refined sugar free, take on Coconut Ice? It […]

Quick and Easy Courgette Soup (zucchini)

Quick and Easy Courgette Soup (zucchini)

As soup season and courgette’s rarely co-inside I’ve never tried courgette soup.  But faced with a haul of them from a kind friend and the sudden stormy week I’ve been working on a soup which will work now and also keep in the freezer for […]

How to meal prep your freezer

How to meal prep your freezer

Meal prep has gained in popularity in the health and fitness community and it’s no surprise why. Having healthy meals to hand all week means we are more likely to eat well and not end up reaching for a takeaway or fast but unhealthy meal options. Cooking in bulk is also money saving as you buy bigger quantities or foods on offer. Plus making double doesn’t take twice the amount of time once you get going and you will save on fuel costs too.

Some people like to meal prep the same meal for the whole week, which can be necessary if using salad veggies which don’t freeze. But freezing meals means you will eat a greater variety of foods as you can simply grab a meal you made, for example, four weeks ago while making something completely different that week and freezing some portions of those.

I like to cook double of most meals so I have four portions one day for the family and another four for packed lunches or quick dinners later on. It means some busy weeks we can have a homemade meal every night with no need to cook. It also allows me to ‘shop my freezer’ and buy minimal food at the supermarket that week. Another time and stress saver!

The key to becoming one of those meal prep gurus who flood Instagram on a Sunday night with their neatly lined up boxes ready for the fridge or freezer is prep. Yes, meal prep prep! But it is a lot easier than you think.

 

Get your meal prep supplies ready

If you have the right tools you are more likely to make a success of your prep. So have the correct containers and coverings ready. Here’s some suggestions:

Enamel pie dishes in individual or larger sizes for pies so they can go straight in the oven. Cover the tops with foil before freezing.

Pyrex dishes with removable lids for lasagnas, pies, one-pot roasts or foil containers.

Tupperware style boxes for foods which can be microwaved or decanted and pan reheated.

Plastic freezer bags are great for dry items or sauces. In order to keep bags of sauces neat place the bag into a freezable cup and fill with the sauce, tie the top and freeze in the cup. When hard you can pop the bag and sauce out of the cup and in it’s neat form into the freezer – it’s easier to label this way too.

Foil is great for wrapping drier items in portions like portions of baked oats, pancakes, waffles, bread etc.

A silicon ice cube tray is brilliant for freezing small amounts of for example, chopped herbs or puree for babies. Then pop them out and into a ziplock bag for easy access. I always froze fruit and vegetables purees in ice cube trays so I could mix a different combination of foods daily with no hassle for my kids while they were weening.

 

Always label your food

Invest in a permanent marker or some stickers because although you are sure now that when you see that bag of red frozen liquid you will know its tomato soup – it can get confusing! I once defrosted an unmarked box of what I thought was fish pie white sauce – with my mash and fish at the ready – only to discover it was actually pancake batter which looks basically the same when it’s in a lump! Now I use a thin permanent marker on all bags and boxes as after freezing and a round in the dishwasher the marker tends to pretty much rub off anyway.

If you are using foil containers with lids then you can write the contents and even cooking instructions on in biro before freezing. It can also be helpful to add the date you froze the meal.

 

Freeze foods correctly

Part of the joy of meal prep is it’s easy to make a meal – that’s not true if you have to hack lumps off a frozen block of food! So when it comes to freezing make sure you’re savvy about how you do your initial freeze. If you have items which you will need to remain separate like fritters, mini tarts or filled pasta it’s best to freeze them on a baking sheet, not touching before placing them into a bag or box. Then you can just take what you need when you want it without defrosting the whole lot. This is also useful when freezing fruits and vegetables so you can create your own frozen veg/fruit bag! There’s no need to defrost the vegetables before cooking, and use frozen fruit straight from the freezer to make ‘nice-cream’ or amazingly thick smoothies.

 

Make your own ready meals

Where you can it makes sense to both saving space in your freezer and also making life easier, to add whole meals to a container. So if you are prepping a curry, include the rice too. If you don’t have time to add the sides at the time you are ready to freeze don’t panic! Simply freeze say the curry and do a batch of rice the next day. As long as it’s cold when you add it to the frozen curry you can pop it straight back into the freezer.

 

Accept you can’t freeze everything

Sadly there are some things which just don’t freeze well, unwhipped cream, custard, iced cake, cream cheese, and mayonnaise are a terrible texture when they are defrosted so there’s little point attempting to freeze them.

 

Smoky Courgette Stew (zucchini)

Smoky Courgette Stew (zucchini)

In the UK right now, especially after an above average amount of sunshine (yay!) courgettes (zucchinis) and red peppers are plentiful. I have been lucky enough to be gifted some from a friend whose veggie patch is beyond luscious and can’t wait to grow my […]