Wellness hacks for the January blues

January always feels to me like cracking open a new notebook and feeling the nervous possibilities of that crisp blank page. Whether you’ve got your whole year planned out ahead of you or you’re gonna fly by the seat of your pants, for many of us, January’s newness can be a blessing and a curse, with the unknown creating a palpable sense of panic. This makes January the perfect time to look after yourself, experiment with wellness and make self-care a real priority. Continue reading “Wellness hacks for the January blues”

4 ingredient date and cashew energy balls recipe for when you’re too busy to bake

Dear reader, please forgive me. I fully intended to post a round-up of easy vegan snack recipes for anyone who is looking for healthy snacks for Christmas but I just haven’t gotten around to it, thanks to the unpredictability of being a freelance writer. This weekend I managed to escape into the kitchen for half an hour, listen to a podcast (Leah Remini discussing Scientology on Ru Paul: What’s the Tee? – I 100% recommend it) and make these unbelievably easy date and cashew nut energy balls.

Similar to my recipe for coconut and cashew cookies, these balls are vegan, you only need 4 ingredients and there’s no baking required so, even if you’re time-strapped or not exactly Nigella in the kitchen, you’ll be able to make them. So, if you’re looking for a really delicious but healthy snack before you overindulge over the festive season, give these date, cashew and coconut energy balls a go. Continue reading “4 ingredient date and cashew energy balls recipe for when you’re too busy to bake”

Try this banana oat breakfast bars recipe for a healthy snack on the go

What’s the story with recipes that include a 2000 word intro before you’ve even seen a photo of a vegetable? Is this another one of those things that only annoys me, like Reply All email chains or text messages beginning ‘Hi’ not ‘Hi Lisa’ (ruuude)? I promise, I will never start a recipe with a long essay. But…

I will preface this banana oat bar recipe by saying that I first started making this recipe because I used to eat those ‘healthy’ cereal bars a lot, before I realised that there’s more sugar in them than in a cupcake and they’re pumped with palm oil, additives and all sorts of nasties. When I don’t eat on the hour, every hour, I get hangry, so I needed a healthy snack to pop in my bag and eat on the go. Continue reading “Try this banana oat breakfast bars recipe for a healthy snack on the go”

The easiest and best recipe for raw peanut butter and chocolate brownies

So I tried to make Reese’s peanut butter cups and this is what happened…

The other night I was absolutely craving Reese’s peanut butter cups but it was raining. Heavy. So I decided to try and make something to satisfy the peanut butter craving, y’know that would not involve me standing in the kitchen with a face mask on, eating it straight from the tub.

So this is my recipe for peanut butter and chocolate brownies and I swear it’s such an easy vegan snack recipe that the laziest of lazy girls can make it, everyone will love them and they’re raw so you don’t even have to bother baking them. And I bet you’ve got all the ingredients already in your kitchen. Should I just rename this blog Lazy Girl’s Guide to Baking?!

Continue reading “The easiest and best recipe for raw peanut butter and chocolate brownies”

It’s July. Here’s a recipe for the greatest soup of your life – sweet potato, spinach and coconut.

I don’t know what it’s like where you are but here in Ireland, it’s wet ‘n windy…and I contemplated putting the heating on at the weekend (hello, climate change). I settled for a cozy blanket instead. I know, I’m a weather wuss.

So, I needed something cozy to eat too while I binged on Twin Peaks and hid from the rain. And what’s cozier than soup? At this stage I’m 95% sweet potato and coconut so unsurprisingly these two delicious ingredients make this really rich soup so great. Did I mention it’s vegan, sugarfree and so easy to make you only need 30 minutes to whip it up? Sold!

Here’s my recipe for sweet potato, coconut and spinach soup: Continue reading “It’s July. Here’s a recipe for the greatest soup of your life – sweet potato, spinach and coconut.”

5 easy ways to use turmeric everyday

Move over coconut oil, turmeric is the superfood du jour.

I thought everyone was on the turmeric train already but I saw a story on the front page of the Irish Independent last Wednesday announcing that turmeric is the new avocado so I guess we’re just catching on to turmeric’s antioxidant powers in Ireland. With this in mind, I just thought I’d share the ways I’ve been sprinkling this fantastically hued spice into my life. If you think turmeric is just for curries, think again. But before we get to that, let’s talk about why turmeric is so good for you. Continue reading “5 easy ways to use turmeric everyday”

Fancy a healthy snack? Try these oat-so-good banana oat cookies

Someone at work recently asked me what I do for ‘downtime’ and I said ‘listen to podcasts and bake.’ (I didn’t think ‘worrying’ was the correct answer.) So today I made cookies and listened to an interview with Prozac Nation author Elizabeth Wurtzel, one of my favourite writers, talking about smuggling cocaine into Norway in her diaphragm and almost destroying her writing career. Cocaine smuggling and cookie recipes go hand-in-hand, ya know.

Anyway, against this unlikely soundtrack I made the easiest healthy 4 ingredient cookies ever. Bananas, oats, coconut and sesame seeds. That’s it. I’m always looking for a healthy snack to binge on when I’m hunched over my laptop on a deadline – and I love recipes with 3 or 4 ingredients so I don’t have to go shopping for baking ingredients I’ll never use again – so these vegan oat cookies are my new go-to healthy snacks when I need a sugar-free pick-me-up. Continue reading “Fancy a healthy snack? Try these oat-so-good banana oat cookies”

Looking for a nutritious vegan dinner recipe? This lentil stew is all you need

It’s National Vegetarian Week so I decided to share my favourite recipe for vegan lentil stew, my go-to recipe when I’m feeling run down or I haven’t been looking after myself as well as I should.

I first came up with this recipe after I found out I had a vitamin b12 deficiency after a few years of traveling and not eating what my body needed. After 20 years of being a smug vegetarian who never so much as needed a packet of Galfer, I was angry with myself for being ‘one of those vegetarians’ and set out to add vitamin B12 into my diet as much as possible, which meant – as well as fortified foods – getting to grips with yeast extract. Some people detest Marmite but I promise you, you won’t even taste it in this recipe. More importantly, just 5g of Marmite gives you 25% of your recommended dietary allowance of Vitamin B12 so I try to eat this dish once a week at least.

As well as the high iron content of the green lentils and broccoli, I always serve it with a generous serving of bulgur wheat for extra B vitamins or quinoa for added protein on top of the tofu cubes. People always gripe that they’re never full after vegetarian food. Well, make this stew and you’ll be unzipping your skinny jeans, trust me. Continue reading “Looking for a nutritious vegan dinner recipe? This lentil stew is all you need”

Treat your sweet tooth with these no bake chocolate oat bites

‘Instagram is better than a travel magazine’, I declared to an unimpressed group of travel journalists about 4 years ago. The lesson here? Know your audience. But I still stick by my belief in Instagram’s influence.

As my wanderlust waned (more on that in another post) Instagram started to give me another kind of inspiration: #foodporn. And yes, I am now a member of the Photographing Your Food Twenty Times As It Goes Cold group. Anyway, I’ve found so many amazing plant-based food bloggers and accounts, including Plant Based Jane, the Minimalist Baker and – my favourite – the Beaming Baker. And discovered a whole world of easy recipes and ideas to try in my own cooking.

The Beaming Baker has an unbelievably easy but addictive recipe for peanut butter and coconut bites that I can’t stop making (and my housemate can’t stop eating when I’m at work). As I mentioned before, I’ve been trying to go vegan after twenty years as your standard vegetarian (OK, I was vegan for almost two years in my early twenties) but this has been one of those weeks where I just NEED chocolate…and it’s only Tuesday.

So, I decided to add chocolate to Beaming Baker’s recipe and see how it turned out. The verdict?  Continue reading “Treat your sweet tooth with these no bake chocolate oat bites”