Lemon Truffles

These lemon truffles are a great healthy treat for when you are in craving something sweet. I make a batch and freeze them and then take a few out in a morning and they are defrosted by mid morning ready to eat.

Don’t like coconut? Simply roll them in something else such as rose petals, cacao or leave them plain.

As well as being a good source of energy and fibre dates are packed full of vitamins and minerals including: calcium, iron, phosphorous, potassium, magnesium and zinc. Combined with the almonds these truffles are a great way to boost your brain power!

Ingredients:

(makes 20, depending on size)

  • 125g raw almonds
  • 170g pitted dates
  • 2 lemons
  • 20g desiccated coconut

Method:

  1. Place the almonds on a baking tray and bake for 10mins at gas make 4/180C. Alternatively you can buy unsalted roasted almonds
  2. Chop the almonds in food processor
  3. Juice the lemons then add lemon juice and dates into the machine. Blend until they are all coarsely mixed
  4. Put the coconut into a small bowl
  5. Using your hands, form little balls
  6. Roll the balls in the coconut

Bone Strengthening Smoothie

I’m loving being able to have green smoothies again, during the early stages of my pregnancy I couldn’t face green smoothies but really missed them! This smoothie is quick and easy to make as well as being delicious! The spinach provides a good source of iron and the lemon helps the absorption of the iron.

Apples, bananas and spinach all help to strengthen your bones. Apple skin contains the flavonoid phlorizin which may help to prevent bone loss associated with the menopause. Bananas contain high levels of potassium which slows urinary calcium loss associated with a diet high in salt. Whilst a single serving of spinach provides twice the RDA of Vitamin K, which is important for maintaining healthy bones.

Ingredients:

  • ½ a banana
  • ½ an apple
  • 1 handful spinach
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • 250ml almond milk

Method:

  1. Peel the banana and remove the core from the apple
  2. Place all of the ingredients in a high speed blender and blitz until smooth

4 Ingredient Coconut Chocolate Bars – Vegan and Gluten-free

These bars are so quick and easy to make and hit the spot when you need a sweet hit. They are similar to a ‘bounty bar’ but without all of the added sugar!

There is lots of conflicting information about coconut oil at the moment, some say it is the best food ever whilst others think it is too early to say whether it lives up to its health claims. Personally, I use coconut in a number of dishes as I believe it is important to have some saturated fat in your diet and I don’t eat butter or red meat so I think it is ok to have a small amount of coconut for saturated fat. Whilst these squares are high in calories they are nutrient dense and I can’t eat more than one of these at a time so it is better than eating a sugar laden snack.

Ingredients:

(Makes about 15 depending on size)

  • 170g unsweetened desiccated coconut
  • 100ml coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 100g 85% dark chocolate

Method:

  1. Place the desiccated coconut in a high-speed blend on the highest setting for 5 minutes
  2. Melt the coconut oil in a pan
  3. Add the coconut oil and maple syrup to the blender and blitz until well combined, the mixture should stick together when squeezed between your fingers
  4. Line a baking tray with grease proof paper and place the mixture into the tin, press the mixture down firmly into the tin
  5. Place the baking tray into the freezer for about 30 minutes to set
  6. Once the coconut mixture has set cut it into squares
  7. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water and then dip the coconut squares into the chocolate until covered. Once coated in chocolate return the squares to the grease proof paper lined baking tray
  8. Place the chocolate covered squares back into the freezer to set. Once they have set place the coconut squares in to an air tight container and store in the freezer

Quick and Easy Butternut Squash 7 Grain Salad

This recipe was inspired by a recipe from Rachel Kelly’s book The Happy Kitchen. I made a few tweaks to it including adding 7 grains to it to make it more filling. I love this recipe it is super easy to make and can be made in advance, just leave adding the avocado until ready to serve so it doesn’t go brown.

Spinach is great for every part of the body as it is high in niacin and zinc, as well as protein, fibre, vitamins A, C, E and K, thiamine, vitamin B6, folate, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper, and manganese.

Spinach is particularly good for your colon due to the high levels of flavonoids which protect the body from cholesterol and free radicals. The folate in spinach is good for a healthy cardiovascular system, and magnesium helps lower high blood pressure. Studies also have shown that spinach helps maintain your brain function, memory and mental clarity.

Ingredients:

Serves 6

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • Sprinkle chilli flakes (to taste)
  • 1 250g packet of quick cook 7 grains
  • 200g spinach (washed and ready to eat)
  • 2 avocados
  • 3 spring onions
  • 2 tbsp mixed seeds

For the dressing:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 2 tbsp soya sauce
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp maple syrup

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6
  2. Peel the butternut squash and cut into 1” cubes, place on a baking tray and toss in the oil and chilli flakes
  3. Bake the butternut squash for 20-30 minutes, until tender. Once cooked remove from the oven and leave to cool
  4. Cook the grains according to the packaging, I got them from Tesco and they just need to be boiled for 10 minutes. Once cooked drain and leave to cool
  5. To make the dressing , place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a fork
  6. Chop up the spring onions and avocado
  7. Place all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well, add the dressing and stir well

Healthy Rhubarb Flapjack – Vegan

If you are in need of an energy fuelled sweet treat then this flapjack is just the thing for you. Sports clients and busy mums equally love it as it is so quick and easy to make and it can be frozen. Personally I freeze it in individual portions and then take one out in the morning and by mid morning it has defrosted.

Oats are a slow release carbohydrate and can help to lower cholesterol levels. Along with being packed full of fibre they contain a number of minerals including magnesium, manganese, selenium and zinc.

Ingredients:

  • 300g oats (or gluten-free oats)
  • 50g sunflower seeds
  • 50g pumpkin seeds
  • 200g dates (chopped finely in a food processor with splash of water)
  • 2 medium bananas, mashed
  • 100g sultanas
  • 3tbsp honey
  • 200g rhubarb, orange and ginger compote

Method:

  1. Mix all the ingredients, except the rhubarb, together and stir well
  2. Put half of the mixture into a greased and lined try, push it down firmly
  3. To make the rhubarb compote place 200g rhubarb in a pan with the juice and zest of 2 oranges and 1cm root ginger, grated. Cook until the rhubarb has broken down but not too runny
  4. Put the rhubarb compote on top so that it is a layer on top of the flapjack mix
  5. Add the remaining mixture and press down so that the rhubarb is in a layer in the middle of the flapjack
  6. Bake for about 45 minutes at gas mark 5
  7. Slice whilst warm and leave to cool

Chocolate Avocado Bites

These avocado chocolate bites are delicious, they melt in your mouth like a truffle! They are higher in sugar than my normal recipes but I came up with them as a snack to be eaten whilst breastfeeding when your body needs  extra energy (and things that can be made in advance)! The addition of avocados means these bites are packed full of nutrients, much more than a standard truffle!

Making these bites takes about 10 minutes to make and then you leave them to set in the fridge for a couple of hours before rolling them into balls. They couldn’t be easier to make! Oh and they are vegan and gluten-free!!

These are a snack to have occasionally in the same way you would a chocolate truffle.

Ingredients:

Makes 20, depending on size

  • 1 avocado
  • 1-2 tbsp almond milk
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp ground almonds
  • 100g 70% chocolate
  • 20g desiccated coconut

Method:

  1. Blitz the avocado with a slash of almond milk until smooth
  2. Add the vanilla, and ground almond and blitz again
  3. Melt the chocolate in a heat proof bowl over a pan of water (bain marie)
  4. When the chocolate is melted remove from the heat and stir in the avocado mixture until well combined. Cover and place in the fridge for a couple of hours until firm
  5. Remove the mixture from the fridge and roll into small balls, roll in coconut and then place them in the a container in the fridge until you are ready to eat them

Super Energy Boost Green Smoothie

This smoothie is packed full of energy boosting ingredients and makes a great breakfast. It only has one piece of fruit in so won’t cause your blood sugar to spike. It’s super versatile so you can swap or remove any ingredients you’re not keen on.

Ingredients:

  • 2 large handfuls of spinach or kale
  • 1 apple
  • Small piece of fresh ginger root
  • 2” piece of cucumber
  • 1 avocado
  • 10 raw almonds
  • 1” piece of lemon
  • Water (the amount will depend on the consistency you like your juice to be)

Method:

  1. Remove the skin and pip from the avocado
  2. Simply put all of the ingredients into a blender and bend until combined

Easy Bean Dip – Vegan and Gluten-free

This dip is super quick and easy to make and will be sure to impress your friends with it’s taste.

Cannellini beans are a great part of a healthy diet as they are high in both protein and fibre. Beans such as cannellinni are frequently used in weight loss as they can help to maintain healthy, normal blood sugar levels in the body. Beans not only help you to feel full but they are also low in calories so they can be used to help achieve a calorie controlled diet. Along with the high fibre content this also makes them a great food for diabetics.

Ingredients:

  • 1x 400g tin cannellini beans
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 heaped tbsp. sesame seeds
  • A pinch ground cinnamon
  • Large handful flat leaf parsley
  • 1 lemon juiced

Method:

  1. Whizz all ingredients, except 1 tbsp lemon juice, in a hand blender until smooth and creamy, taste and add more lemon juice if required
  2. Serve with pitta bread, bread sticks or crackers

Raw Carrot Cake Bites (Nut Free and Vegan)

This recipe came about as I needed a snack that was nut-free and all of my date ball recipes contain nuts.  I love carrot cake so I thought why not create a healthy snack based on these flavours.

Carrots are a fantastic source of beta carotene. Beta carotene is converted into Vitamin A which has many fantastic benefits to eye health hence the saying that eating carrots help you see in the dark!

Vitamin A acts as a antioxidant to cell damage, some studies suggest that it can slow down the ageing of cells whilst protecting the skin from sun damage.

This recipe is quick and easy to make, for a gluten-free version simply replace the oats with gluten-free oats.

Ingredients:

Makes 30 (depending on size)

  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 2 tbsp apple sauce (1 small apple, stewed)
  • 4 dried apricots
  • 1 heaped tbsp date paste or 50g Medjool dates
  • 1tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 100g jumbo oats (or gluten-free oats)
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp mixed spice
  • The juice of 1 orange

Method:

  1. In a food blender, blitz the dates and apricot until they are chopped.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and blitz until well combined
  3. Roll the dough into small balls and place in an airtight container
  4. Store in the fridge, or they can be frozen.

Spelt Bread – Vegan

I try to avoid eating too much wheat as it makes me very bloated, however, I find that I cope a lot better with spelt flour. Spelt flour has a different structure to wheat and it is high in fibre making it easier to digest.

Spelt has a number of nutritional properties including: high levels of protein, iron, copper, manganese, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, zinc, selenum, Vitamin B6 and folic acid. Therefore spelt can help with digestive health, lowering cholesterol, circulation, hormone regulation, bone health and the immune system.

Wholemeal spelt flour can be purchased in most large supermarkets and can be used for a variety of baking recipes. I love how simple this bread is to make. It only takes about 10 minutes of work the rest of the time is spent proving the dough, so you can get on with something else.

Ingredients:

  • 450g of wholemeal spelt flour
  • 7g dried yeast
  • 1tsp Himalayan Salt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 325ml tepid water
  • 75g pumpkin seeds

Method:

  1. Place the spelt flour, yeast and salt in a bowl and stir well
  2. 
Spelt Bread
  3. Add the olive oil and water and mix well using your hands
  4. Turn the dough out on to the side or place in a mixer with a dough hook and knead for approx 5 minutes
  5. Proof the dough by placing the dough into a bowl and covering with a tea towel before placing in a warm place for about an hour, until it has doubled in size
  6. When it has doubled in size, place the dough on the work surface and sprinkle on the seeds then knock the air out of it a little bit before kneading for a few more minutes
  7. Shape the dough and place it into the tins you are going to use, cover with a tea towel and leave to proof in a warm place for a further 30 minutes

Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for about 30 minutes (depending if you have made one big loaf or 2 smaller ones)