Here are some of my favourite healthy recipes you can prepare quickly after a long, busy day to nourish your body with the right nutrients. These meals are not only balanced but also mouth-watering, so there’s no excuse not to give them a try!
I know cooking a meal from scratch is the last thing many of you want to think about after a hectic day. That’s why I think it’s important to keep it simple without compromising on the flavour. These recipes are delicious.
You can see that for each recipe, I’ve given my comments on what I like about it and how I would tweak it to make it even more nutritious. I hope these ideas will give you some inspiration and help you to enjoy cooking your meals!
What I love about this recipe: A good soup can be such a simple nourishing meal. This one features lentils, which are highly nutritious, especially rich in protein and fibre. Although this soup is quite easy and quick to prepare, the end result is a robust and balanced meal, with a good amount of protein, complex carbs, fibre and phytonutrients. You can also prepare this meal ahead of time and freeze it – super convenient for busy weeks.
What I would change: Swap the vegetable broth for a bone broth rich in minerals and many other healthy nutrients, including vitamins and amino acids, to bring in extra nutritional benefits and flavour. This meal would also be the perfect opportunity to add more leafy greens, such as spinach, chard, kale, etc. Leafy greens are high in vitamins, minerals, and fibre but low in calories. A diet rich in leafy greens has been linked to reductions in obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, and mental decline.
What I love about this recipe: Its simplicity – minimal ingredients and only one pan mean less mess. However, this simple recipe provides an explosion of flavours with the tapenade, fresh basil, and tomatoes. It’s also a great way to add more fish into your meals.
What I would change: Swap the white rice, which is less nutrient-dense, for alternatives such as brown rice, wild rice, or quinoa. These options contain more antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, and because of their higher fibre content, they will make you feel full for longer and keep your blood sugar levels more balanced. You should know by now that I love my veggies, so I would also add a good salad as a side dish or add some spinach to this dish.
What I love about this recipe: Each meatball is a powerhouse of nutrients, the perfect balance of proteins and carbohydrates plus extra goodness with spices and veggies. Baking the meatballs instead of deep-frying them reduces the amount of calories – but more importantly, deep frying can be highly inflammatory. The hummus brings extra protein and fibre into this dish, and the combination of flavours and textures is delicious.
What I would change: Instead of white rice, I would cook with a complex carbohydrate alternative such as brown rice. This meal is also lacking some veggies; preparing a quick salad or a tomato sauce as a side dish would balance it out.
What I love about this recipe: Maybe the right question here is, what’s not to love about it? It’s full of veggies, is a powerhouse of nutrients, contains good protein sources and is not shy on flavour! Plus, so many of its ingredients are anti-inflammatory, such as ginger, garlic, and coriander. It’s also rare to see a recipe featuring so many leafy greens.
What I would change: This is honestly a difficult one to comment on. If you want to make a more robust meal, I would say to add a good slice of wholegrain bread (I like this one) or some quinoa.
What I love about this recipe: This is such a healthy comfort food. I know that many times, poor potatoes are seen as a ‘bad’ food (I don’t agree with the terms ‘good’ and ‘bad’ foods), but this root veggie has so many benefits, such as high fibre content, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals (if you want to learn more, check here).
What I would change: I would bake the crab cakes instead of frying them; it’s less messy and a healthier alternative. I also wouldn’t peel the potatoes and instead mash them with the skin on to get more fibre – honestly, you will not notice the difference, and the potato skin actually has more nutrients than the rest of the potato (when compared by weight).
Tell me in the comments below, which recipe are you tempted to try this week?