One of the most common New Year’s Resolutions is: to lose weight or eat better. Healthy meals in general are common goals for people looking to achieve a healthier lifestyle, lose that extra 5kgs or make a greater change to their eating habits for their health. Healthy meals don’t have to be complicated or crazy expensive either!
It’s easy to feel like healthy eating and great meals are a little harder to attain when supermarkets push expensive health alternatives that you don’t need to maintain a good diet. In today’s blog post, we’ll cover some helpful hacks for getting healthy meals incorporating whole foods into your diet without breaking the bank.
Popular fruits aren’t always readily available all year round and even if they are in season, they can often be expensive – especially fruits like berries, mango and passionfruit. To save a few dollars and increase the longevity of fruits you can use in great recipes, use frozen fruits from your local frozen aisle. They’re frozen to keep their quality and can be used in a variety of ways, whether you choose to keep them frozen or defrost them!
Here's a simple breakfast recipe where you can use frozen blueberries:
1 level tbsp oats
1 level tbsp chia seeds
1 heaped tbsp frozen
3 tbsp full-fat Greek yoghurt
1 tbsp full-fat milk
½ tsp ground cinnamon
A nice little overnight muesli that can be easily thrown together using a tablespoon measure and some frozen blueberries. There is no need to defrost frozen blueberries prior to making this, as they will defrost in the fridge overnight. The chia seeds add protein, fibre and a creamy texture.
1. Place all the ingredients in a bowl, mix well and refrigerate overnight.
2. Stir to break up the blueberries before serving. Add an extra tablespoon of milk, if the mixture is too thick.
If you need to add a few more greens into your diet or you’ll looking to lower your carb intake on a fasting day, making your own noodles out of veggies is a hack you can use to still have delicious food and cut costs! Our favourite is making zucchini noodles – and you need a fancy spiralizer either! You can create “zoodles” with a simple peeler or a kitchen knife, then steam or boil for 30-60 seconds to stay firm and al-dente. If you are mixing zoodles with regular pasta simply drop them in the boiling water with the regular (preferably whole grain!) pasta for the last 30-60 seconds, before draining and serving. or and boil them like you would with normal wheat-based pasta.
Use fresh zoodles in the following delicious and easy recipe:
2 tbsp olive oil
250g large peeled prawns, defrosted
Zest of 1 lemon
½ tsp chilli flakes, to taste (optional)
2 medium zucchini, spiralised or julienned
75g Garlic and Herb Boursin
1. Heat the oil in a frying pan over a high heat. When hot, add the prawns, lemon zest and chilli flakes, if using, and cook for 1–2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Reduce the heat to medium and add the zucchini noodles. Cook for about 1 minute, until warmed
through, stirring regularly.
3. Stir in the Boursin and add 1 tablespoon of water to loosen, if needed (the sauce should be a creamy consistency). Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper to serve.
Beans are not just for hearty English breakfasts but are a great ingredient for a healthy diet as they’re packed with fibre, protein, and antioxidants and they’re also affordable! From red beans for a Louisiana-style curry to black beans for a Mexican night, beans are a great way to make your meals healthier. We personally love the following Mexican recipe for an easy dinner:
1½ tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 red capsicums, deseeded and finely chopped
250g minced beef
1 × 400g can black beans, drained
2 tbsp fajita seasoning
1 × 400g can chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp diced jalapeño chillies
120g Cheddar, grated
4 tbsp full-fat Greek yoghurt
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas 6.
2. Place a wide-based ovenproof casserole over a medium heat. Add the oil, onion and capsicums and sauté for 3–4 minutes, stirring from time to time. Add the minced beef and fry for about 4 minutes, stirring to break the meat up into small pieces.
3. Stir in the black beans, fajita seasoning, tomatoes and jalapeños. Simmer for 3 minutes and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
4. Scatter the cheese all over and bake in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is browned and bubbling.
5. Serve with the yoghurt and cooked greens alongside.
You can find more amazing healthy and affordable recipes for an improved diet in our recent book, The Fast 8 Keto Recipe Book by Dr Clare Bailey with Kathryn Bruton. You certainly don’t need to be doing the keto diet to enjoy these delicious recipes for any meal throughout the day using accessible whole foods. Learn more about the recipe book now and order one today!