The recipe roundup

Photo Credit: Jamie Hamel-Smith
Photo Credit: Jamie Hamel-Smith

I’m often asked what I eat, what foods I recommend, what diet do I recommend for this condition or another. I’m not qualified to offer specific advice, so I decided to share some of the resources I frequently return to over and over to keep me on track, enjoying a healthy diet with plenty of delicious treats thrown in for good measure to help you find what works for you.

No tough regimes to follow, simply learning to nourish your body in a way that fuels and nurtures you, helping you to feel your very best. It’s a process of discovery, of trial and error, it takes time and commitment, it’s not all or nothing, this diet or that diet.

We must learn what food our body responds to well, and which foods we need to avoid and that is different for everyone.

I think we all know intuitively what is good for us and what foods we ought to avoid. But, there is an emotional element related to our eating habits that often make dietary changes feel so difficult. Start to notice what food you reach for when you’re tired, stressed, anxious etc. Can you opt for a healthier alternative? Swap your regular bar of chocolate with raw chocolate, make up some granola bars for when you have no time for breakfast, carry fruit and nuts with you to snack on during the day. Think of a healthier alternative to your go to indulgence food.

It really is worth the effort so stick with it. Keep a note of what you ate that day and how you felt. This practice really helped me in understanding that the foods I wanted and craved, were not always the foods my body needed or responded well to.

Personally, I decided to remove gluten, dairy and sugar from my largely vegetarian diet. I won’t lie it was tough! Looking back I see that I made it difficult by being so strict, it took all the fun away from meal times, eating out became awkward to say the least and I didn’t enjoy it. I have since learnt to strike the right balance for me by relaxing the rules, listening to my body and responding to its cravings.

In time, I discovered what I needed to eat to feel my best and I allow for the indulgences that keep me sane! Ensuring I feel nurtured as well as nourished by my food choices.

I believe in eating what is right for you and only you can determine what that is.

What works for one person may not work for another. Some people thrive on a vegetarian diet, some vegan, some raw and some need more protein from different sources including meat.

Explore recipes and ways of cooking that work for you. I’m a lazy cook. I like meals that are quick to make and leave little mess! So if like me you tend to love food that is time consuming to make I suggest you make it in batches and store it in the fridge and another batch in the freezer. Investing in a slow cooker has been a game changer – love it! Find what works for you, your family and your lifestyle.

To support you in making some healthy changes to your diet I’m sharing a range of recipe resources that I have discovered along the way. I return to these for inspiration over and over again. They keep me inspired and enjoying my food. I tend to be a creature of habit when it comes to meals, but I do ensure I try something new often. I’d be lost without these folks producing new recipes.

Explore, experiment and enjoy!

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Deliciously Ella – My absolute favourite. I have not made any recipes from Ella that I have not enjoyed. I love a quick, simple, easy meal option and this girl has a few up her sleeve. I love her superfood bread, perfect for a healthy snack with avocado and salsa or to go with soup for lunch. Her sweet potato brownies and banana bread are delicious, her mince pie recipe kept my family happy at Christmas time and her nutella is a winner!

Oh she glows – Another tried and tested website that I’ve come to rely on. I love the dessert and smoothie recipes on this site. and these brownies are amazing!  There is a large range of recipes available. Lots of vegan options, the creamy avocado pasta is my go to meal when I’m too hungry to cook and just need to eat, I make it with gluten free pasta when peeling or chopping is too much effort! My favourite is gluten free pasta is Rizopia organic brown rice, it’s delicious.

My New Roots – Is the latest edition to my collection of cookbooks. A girl after my own heart who doesn’t buy into labels that tell you to subscribe to one particular way of eating. I love that the website categorises recipes by season too. The broccoli soup is my go to recipe for lunch,  I love the socca too

Minimalist Baker – Is becoming my new favourite for quick and easy recipes. There’s a good selection of simple pasta recipes, tasty salads and yummy snacks. I love picnics and the pad thai spring rolls and quinoa spring rolls make lovely picnic food.

Thug kitchen – If you don’t mind a bit of bad language (it gives me a chuckle), it has some delicious easy to make recipes and encourages you to make healthier versions of more traditional (US) meals.

Finally, a source of delicious recipes that includes meat options take a look at the The Whole Daily. I love the focus on gut health (sign up to receive the free ebook) and the focus on healthy alternatives to everyday family recipes we all know and love. I have my eye on the cheeky mac n cheese to try. And Madeleine Shaw who offers a healthy take on some classic British recipes, amongst a vast array of delicious, healthy looking meals.

There is a lot to explore here, I’d love to hear how you get on. Have you found modifying your diet to have had a positive transformation on your health and well being? Or have you found a new favourite amongst these? Let me know in the comments below.

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8 thoughts on “The recipe roundup

  1. Some fantastic links and resources here Nicola and I’ll definitely be following these up. Totally with you on eating healthy and allowing yourself some indulgences along the way, very sensible advice. My body responds to a really healthy diet but I love my treats too! Susan Jane White’s book Extra Virgin Kitchen has seriously improved my diet. Thanks for this!

  2. Great post I can really relate to. I like very simple food, I don’t like to embellish my food with lots of sauce and gravy, and I cook mostly meals that take no time to prepare. Thanks for the links and resources. Love this.

  3. I’m an intuitive cook but I’m always looking for inspiration to adapt. I’m also apparently solar powered, as my eating choices tend to be fresher and less processed during what I call the daylight months!
    Thanks for the links :)

    1. I think if we all ate intuitively we would be a lot healthier! Solar powered, I love that. It’s true, it seems to come more naturally to eat fresh fruit and vegetables in the summer months x

  4. “I believe in eating what is right for you and only you can determine what that is.”

    Yes yes yes! So many people – especially on the internet – are far too rigidly black and white about food. That path led to orthorexia-induced anxiety attacks for me. Choosing my own balance was a eureka moment a couple of years ago, but seems obvious in hindsight!

    I’d never heard of Thug Kitchen before, but their expletive-rich blog titles had me cackling. Thanks for the intro : )

    1. Thanks Lola. Absolutely! We all seem to look to others for the answers and unfortunately it isn’t so simple, especially when it comes to our health. It took me a long time to get to the place of eating what feels right for me, understanding cravings and not following any one diet type or looking to other people and thinking they all eat a certain way so it must be ok! Sometimes we have to veer off into the extremes to then come back to our own personal balance. Thug Kitchen has me smiling with every recipe description, hope you enjoy some new yummy meals :) x

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