I fell off for a while whilst I was struggling with IBS. To manage it, I had to stick to a strict low FODMAP diet where legumes are unfortunately not allowed.
Now that I’m able to eat them again I’ve been using beans and lentils wherever I can. If you love chickpeas too you have to try Pamela Reif’s inventive cookie dough recipe – chickpeas are involved…
If you’re not adventurous enough to try chickpea based desserts, try a homemade hummus.
I find homemade hummus much more flavourful and fresh than the store bought kind, and it’s a brilliant way to get plant-based protein, anti-inflammatory nutrients, and healthy fats in.
I’m also weirdly addicted to green olives, so I’ve perfected a recipe that incorporates them too.
Blend the following until smooth, and try it yourself:
400g canned, washed & drained chickpeas
Healthy dose of lemon, herb and garlic seasoning (I find the Masterfood’s blend the perfect amount of zest and flavour, but you can always use an actual squeeze of lemon, mixed herbs, and a clove of garlic).
Today I thought I’d share with you my favourite 4-ingredient cookie recipe. It’s perfect for whipping up on a Sunday night, so you have healthy treats/snacks to snack on through out the week.
Now that we’re all getting cold in Sydney (and by cold I mean the weather has changed to 22C/71F, and Sydney-siders are wimps), it’s lovely to have some comfort food options that aren’t going to make the anticipation of bikini season super stressful.
There’s no denying that avocado is the best breakfast/lunch/dinner/snack food available.
But who says it can’t be used as a dessert?
Certainly notme (says me and my huge sweet tooth)
Recently I have been playing around with avocado based desserts, and I took inspiration from a post I saw for brownies made for the Ketogenic diet (high fat/protein, low carb).
I ended up modifying the recipe – more towards my taste preferences – and since I’m not following the keto diet, I did add in some honey (which you might want to swap for monk fruit or stevia, if you are looking for lower carb options).
I will admit my first go was very underwhelming. I completely missed the mark on the sweetness, so brownies tasted more like buttery dirt.
But, practice makes perfect, and after many flops I have formulated a avo-brownie recipe that is undeniably healthy. You will need:
1 medium avocado
1/4 cup nut butter – I love peanut Mayver’s butter
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1/2 cup cacao powder
1 tsp baking soda
3 tbsp cacao nibs
2 tbsp warm honey (less sticky)
Mix everything (except cacao nibs) together in a blender until it is smooth and creamy, and press into a brownie pan. Sprinkle the cacao nibs and cinnamon on top.
My latest obsession “nice-cream” is as creamy and delicious as regular ice cream, but it also has all the health benefits as well.
If you don’t know what nice cream is, let me help you. It’s basically a soft and velvety concoction that tastes like ice cream but is made from all the good stuff. As such, it has 32g of protein, and 1g of sugar.
After many mornings whizzing up different blends, I’ve finally mastered my chocolate mousse nice cream. My recipe is an ultra filling dessert, but I eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
You will need:
1 chopped, frozen banana (I like to buy about 5 bananas at the start of the week, and then chop and freeze them all at once to save time).
0.5 tbsp cinnamon (did you know cinnamon curbs sugar cravings?)
1 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp cacao nibs
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
And that’s it! Just blend until you get a thick, creamy consistency. You might have blend a little, stir it, and then blend some more to make it all come together.
I top with different things every day. My favourites lately have been lower glycemic fruits like chopped apple, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, and then sunflower seeds or cacao nibs for some crunch!
Here’s the macronutrient breakdown compared to 2 scoops of regular chocolate gelato:
Last week I travelled with my best friend to Byron Bay – a beachside town in New South Wales, Australia, known for it’s laid back beach & hippie culture. (Yes we purposely booked this trip over Valentines Day, as a cheeky romantic getaway for two single girls).
I’ve traveled with friends and family to Byron many times, but this was the first time I noticed HOW DELICIOUS and diverse all the food options were.
They literally have everything – vegan cafes, vegetarian restaurants, chocolaterie’s, wholefood cafes, Egyptian restaurants, fancy bars, Contemporary Australian cuisine, Indian takeaway, Asian fusion, Japanese dinner places, pizza… the list goes on.
What I was particularly amazed by was how easy it was to eat healthy. With green juices, fresh coconuts, protein balls, fresh fruit, and superfood slices, on offer all over the place, I was spoiled for choice.
Safya Cafe serves Egyptian inspired dishes, in a beautiful spot where the ocean breeze flows right in. We went here three times for breakfast (because I could not get over the avo/dukkah toast & dandelion latte combo), but they also do a delicious Lunch and Dinner menu.
If you are here for the contemporary Australian brunch scene, head to Bayleaf. Offering all-day brekkie options like house-made bircher, corn fritter stacks, and dill/salmon eggs, it’s a brunch spot you just can’t miss.
$1.50 oyster specials, daily sunset happy hour, live music, and $12 Espresso Martini’s – you can’t say no. Obviously we went for the oyster deal and then finished the night with an abundance of cocktails, a King Crab Salad and Lamb/Beef Pappardelle.
We booked this for the night of Valentine’s day and readied ourselves for a Mediterranean feast. O went all out and ordered the Share Mezze Platter (for herself..), which hosted kofte balls, hummus, pita bread, oven-roasted tomatoes, falafels and more. I went for two dishes; stuffed bell peppers (with basmati rice/whipped fetta/dukkah) and the lamb kofte balls. Safe to say both were delightful.
Byron is known for organic/wholefood food spots that do mouth-watering raw treats like vegan/GF strawberry cream and caramel donuts. Check out Combi and Fundies Wholefood Cafe if that’s your thing.
However, if I’m having dessert I’m going to treat myself and go all out. Hands down the best ice cream shop I’ve ever been to is In The Pink.
They are constantly introducing eclectic flavours like strawberry chocolate fudge, Nutella caramel, Gingerbread, and Orange Sorbet. On the last night I treated myself to a double scoop of chocolate fudge and Nutella caramel, and I have absolutely no regrets.
P.s. if chocolate is your thing – be sure to check out Love Byron Bay – Crêperie & Chocolate Boutique.
Christmas is coming… which means lots of delectable choccy recipes are also coming to this blog. Check out my favourite hot chocolate recipe (for a late night treat) below – only around 100-150 calories depending on what you use…
Christmas is the time to indulge in all your favourites, but there are healthy substitutes for every dessert, that still taste just as good.
You will need:
2 tbsp cacao
1.5 cups plain almond milk
1 tsp vanilla essence
Pinch of cinnamon
1/2 – 1 tbsp maple syrup *depending how sweet you like it aka don’t hold back*
Calories: 219 (335 with 1 tbsp peanut butter topping)
Fat: 5g | Fiber: 14g | Carbs: 23g
Prep time: 5 mins
Now that summer’s approaching here in Australia, a smoothie bowl is the perfect refreshing breakfast or lunch.
I have curated the perfect recipe using healthy ingredients for vitality and energy. The key ingredient here (which I discovered recently and have been loving) is the Raw Slim & Tone Protein by Amazonia – this stuff has around 7.5mg of iron in it.
Incorporating this powder into a smoothie bowl gives it an irresistible nutty chocolate taste, as well as packing it with protein and iron for satiety and energy throughout the day.
In my bowl I have:
30g Slim & Tone Protein
1 cup baby spinach
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup almond milk
1 tbsp psyllium husks (optional – but good for digestion of the protein)
1/4 cup water
You can also add some extra nutrients such as the collagen and pro/pre-biotic powders from Vida Glow and The Beauty Chef.
For those who don’t know, Poke (pronounced “poh-kay”) is a native Hawaiian dish of diced raw fish, usually in some sort of marinade.
For some, raw fish alone probably doesn’t seem appetising, but when whipped up in a salad-style bowl with an assortment of other flavours – trust me it’s to die for. Raw fish is also a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals – see more on the health benefits here.
I got onto the poke bowl trend after discovering a restaurant (Greenhouse Asian Salads), which does a brilliant poke bowl with tuna, black rice, soybeans, wasabi peas, and veggies.
I must have been going on about how much I loved the bowls, because a friend bought me a poke recipe book (probably to stop me from dragging her all about Sydney to taste different poke bowls). After trying a couple of the different combinations, I figured you basically need a protein, base, salad, marinade, and some toppings for extra taste. Here are my favourite combinations:
Diced Raw Tuna in Mayo
Diced Raw Salmon in Soy Sauce
Roasted Sesame Dressing
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Dried Seaweed (Nori)
Each time I make a poke bowl I mix it up with a variation of the above! Let me know if you try it.
p.s. Here are some of my other favourite poke bowl spots: