Hummus is perfect for an afternoon snack, I love to dip into it with warm pita bread or tortilla chips. It’s also great for a sharing platter, surrounded by chopped veggies. I always used to buy tubs from the supermarket but it’s so quick and easy to make your own. Once you have tahini in the fridge it lasts for ages and is also great in salad dressings. You can get creative with hummus by adding lots of different veggies. If you don’t have any kale you could try using red peppers, chopped parsley, or even beetroot.
I like my hummus with a bit of bite (not as super smooth as the supermarket bought tubs). If you prefer a smoother consistency you could add some more water when blending the hummus together.
For 1 bowl of hummus you will need
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic (peeled and roughly chopped)
- 1/2 tin chickpeas
- 1/2 cup kale
- 2 tablespoons water
- pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon of chickpeas to serve (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper to serve (optional)
- In a food processor, add the tahini and lemon juice and blend together for 30 seconds
- Add the garlic, chickpeas, kale, water and salt and blend for a further minute
- Transfer the hummus to a bowl and serve with a few chickpeas on top (you could add a sprinkle of cayenne pepper for a touch of heat!)
- Serve with warm pita bread, tortilla chips or raw veggies and enjoy!
I’m a big fan of garlic mushrooms. I usually like to cook them slowly in lots of garlic until very soft and moist. This time I fancied making them more of a meal so I looked to my favourite store cupboard staple- lentils!
The result tasted great so I had to share the recipe! I served them up with a simple green salad and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.
For the mushrooms (serves 2)
- 4 large portabello or field mushrooms (stalks removed and saved for stuffing)
- 5 cloves of garlic (chopped)
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
For the lentil stuffing
- 1 white onion (diced)
- mushroom stalks (finely chopped)
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 cup red split lentils (washed)
- boiling water
- salt to taste
- green salad to serve
- In a pan on medium heat, add the onions and mushroom stalks with a little olive oil and cook until the onions are soft
- Add the cumin powder, tumeric powder and cumin seeds and stir, cook for a minute
- Turn the pan down and add the lentils
- Add 250 ml of boiling water, a good pinch of salt and stir together
- Let the lentil mixture simmer on a low heat until the lentils are cooked through (add more boiling water if the mixture begins to dry out before this point)
- Whilst the lentil mix is simmering, on a medium heat add the mushrooms and a good glug of olive oil and a pinch of salt to a frying pan
- Cook the mushrooms for a couple of minutes on each side to add some colour
- The mushrooms will start to release moisture, at this point reduce the heat a little and add the garlic
- Cover with a lid and continue to cook on low until the mushrooms are soft all the way through
- Transfer the mushrooms to an oven pan and generously stuff each mushroom with the lentil sauce
- Serve the mushrooms with a fresh green salad and enjoy!
This smoothie bowl doesn’t taste green at all! It’s so simple and quick to make. You could take it on the go as a regular smoothie or serve it as I have in a bowl, topped with fruit, nuts and seeds. It’s best to use ripe banana and kiwi for this smoothie to give natural sweetness.
For the smoothie
- 2 small eating apples
- 1 kiwi (peeled and chopped)
- 1/2 cup baby spinach
- 1/2 banana
- 100ml almond milk
For the topping
- 1/2 banana
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon dried fruit and nuts
- Peel, core and chop the apple and add to a smoothie maker or blender
- Add the kiwi, banana, spinach and almond milk
- Blend until smooth
- Serve in a bowl topped with sliced banana, chia seeds and the dried fruit/nut mix
Here’s a recipe for another avocado salad and you’ll get healthy just looking at it! This salad is great at lunchtime as it’s super easy and quick to make and the chickpeas and avocado will keep you going until dinner. The creamy dressing is made with tahini and is really moreish and delicious.
You could really add any veggies you like to this salad, I’ve served it up on a bed of baby leaf spinach but other salad mixes would work well also.
For 1 large salad you will need:
- 1/2 tin chickpeas
- 1 tablespoon of chopped cucumber
- 5 cherry tomatoes (halved)
- 1 tablespoon of sweetcorn
- 1 teaspoon of chopped parsley
- 1/4 of an avocado
- 1 tablespoon tahini
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons of honey (or brown sugar)
- pinch of salt
- In a large salad bowl, add the chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, sweetcorn and parsley
- Bring together the dressing in a separate bowl; add the tahini, lemon juice, honey (or sugar) and salt and give everything a good stir
- Pour the dressing over the salad and mix everything together
- Place the dressed salad in the middle of a large plate
- Arrange some babyleaf spinach around the place
- Chop the avocado into slices and place on top of the salad
- Enjoy right away!
This salad tasted too good not to share! I thought up the recipe driving home hungry. I was in my van in the sunshine, wishing I wasn’t on the motorway and that I was eating an avocado salad, this avocado salad. It was super quick to make (just some chopping) and you have a wonderful colourful plate that’s both satisfying in flavour and texture.
What you will need for a salad for 2
- 1/2 red onion
- 1 large carrot
- 1/4 cucumber
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 2 tablespoons sweetcorn (cooked or tinned)
- 1 ripe avocado
- fresh lime juice
- olive oil
- Cut up the onion, carrot, cucumber and pepper into small bite size pieces and place in a large bowl
- Add the sweetcorn and stir together
- Give the vegetables a good squeeze of fresh lime juice, a pinch of salt and a glug of olive oil
- Give everything a good mix
- Cut the avocado in half, carefully remove the pip and the peel
- Serve each salad portion with an avocado half and enjoy!
This is a feel good recipe for a lentil soup that will cheer you up on a rainy day or help you feel a bit more human when you’re under the weather. With lots of vegetables and lentils, it’s pretty well balanced and has plenty of flavour. It’s definitely hearty enough for a main meal if you have a big bowl; and with a large chunk of crusty bread, even better.
For this soup, it’s worth cutting the vegetables into small bite size pieces as it won’t be blended. Also I like to make this soup quite ‘saucy’ (see pic), but if you like a thicker soup, you could add a few more red lentils.
To make 4 large bowls of lentil soup you will need:
- 1 medium white onion (diced)
- 3 cloves garlic
- chilli flakes (small pinch)
- oregano (small pinch)
- 2 large sticks of celery
- 2 large carrots
- 1 large russet potato
- Approximately 750ml of boiling water
- 1/2 cup red lentils
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes
- chopped parsley (a good pinch)
- olive oil
- Chop up all of the vegetables
- Add a little olive oil and the onion to a large saucepan on medium heat. Let it cook until soft and transparent.
- Stir in the garlic, chilli flakes and oregano and continue to fry for a few minutes.
- Add the celery, carrots and potatoes and cover with the boiling water. There should be enough water to cover the vegetables so that when you stir it they still have lots of space to move around.
- Bring to the boil, add a good pinch of salt and then turn down to a simmer
- After 10 minutes, add the red lentils and the chopped tomatoes
- Let it simmer for around 20 minutes or until the lentils are completely cooked
- Depending on your desired soup consistency, you may want to add some more boiling water
- Check for seasoning, turn off the heat and stir in the chopped parsley
- Let the soup cool for a good few minutes before serving and enjoy!
I love mangoes! They are completely delicious and great for naturally sweet smoothies. I topped this smoothie with dried fruits, nuts and chia seeds. I think this would be a great smoothie to have before a morning workout (or lie in), before having a decent breakfast later on. Or to make it more substantial, you could turn it into a smoothie bowl and add fresh fruit, granola or muesli. I use a Breville ‘Blend Active’ to make my smoothies in single portions, I think they’re great and there’s very little washing up afterwards.
For 1 mango smoothie you will need
1 ripe mango, peeled and cubed
150 ml of plant milk
1 tablespoon chia seeds
A handful of dried fruit and nuts
- Peel and cube the mango and place in the blender
- Add the plant milk
- Blend until completely mixed
- Depending on what consistency you like, you may want to add more plant milk
- Pour into your favourite glass and sprinkle with chia seeds, fruits and nuts
This pomegranate salsa is light and fruity but still perfect as an accompaniment to savoury dishes. It’s very easy to make and is great dipped into with tortilla chips, spooned into a pita bread with some falafel or rolled into fajitas with plenty of veg. It makes a great change to reaching for a jar of pre-made tomato salsa, and is much tastier.
Using the same amount of tomato and pomegranate in this salsa helps keep it light and makes it taste extra special. Therefore, measurements below are just a guide and your own judgement will be better!
To make this you will need
1/4 Large pomegranate
1/2 Large red onion
3 Large tomatoes
1 Tablespoon of parsley finely chopped
1 Teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Quarter the pomegranate and carefully separate the molasses in a bowl (watch out for the bright juice on clothes!)
- Dice the red onion and tomato into small equal pieces
- Finely chop the parsley
- Assemble the salsa (try to use the same amount of tomato and pomegranate, and enjoy any spare later)
- Add the lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste
- Give your salsa a good stir and enjoy!
When I’m craving something fresh and nutritious, I turn to this colourful and delicious buckwheat salad. This is such a simple dish to make and perfect on its own or served with a warm pita and some hummus.
To make a salad for two people you will need:
200 grams buckwheat groats
¼ Cucumber (Cubed)
1 Large Carrot (Diced)
A few springs of chopped parsley
1 Handful of baby spinach
1 Handful of rocket
½ Red onion
10 Cherry tomatoes, quartered
Squeeze of fresh lemon
Ground black pepper
- Wash the buckwheat thoroughly, and in a suitable pan, boil in hot water following the packet instructions (boil for approx 20 mins until cooked but still with a bit of bite)
- Whilst the buckwheat is cooking, chop up the other vegetables
- Once the buckwheat is cooked, drain thoroughly and rinse in cold water until completely cool
- In a large bowl, add the chopped vegetables to the buckwheat
- Add a good squeeze of lemon, a splash of olive oil and a dash of balsamic vinegar
- Add salt and pepper to taste