“Taco” a look at this indulgent, healthier Saturday night fakeaway! (sorry, couldn’t resist).
For those of you not from Northern Ireland you may have a different idea of what a taco chip is but over here it’s a typical takeaway dish that uses fried white chips that get covered in mince, melted cheese and a special taco sauce. It’s a properly indulgent, Saturday night blowout kind of treat. I’ve only ever had it once or twice in my life and I’m not going to lie, it’s flipping delicious! However, I’ve never really liked red meat so would always pick around this bit and I’ve been craving one recently so I decided to make a healthier one. This is what I tend to do with my cravings, I’ll try to satisfy them with a healthier homemade version first, which works 9 times out of 10.
What’s even better is that this version contains 2/5 a day (the tomato puree actually counts as 1 as it’s so concentrated) and contains many more nutrients with none of the deep fried fat as it’s baked, you can also get some good omega 3 fats in there too by choosing an organic cheddar cheese.
As for the mayo and cheese, I feel no guilt with these ingredients as I use good quality versions and the rest of the dish is pretty lean therefore it actually needs the fat for flavour and moisture, otherwise you wouldn’t really want to eat it, but trust me, if you make this version, you WILL!
This quick meal is not only tasty and cheap to make but uber healthy too thanks to the 6 different fruit/veg meaning it’s packed full of plant based goodness. There’s way too much to mention in detail so I’m just going to quickly summarise the main benefits below:
*Easily sourced cheap ingredients
*Lots of fibre = filling
*Protein from the lentils and peas
*Cruciferous veg from the cauliflower
*vit A and C from the mango
*Filled with plant based antioxidant goodness
Quick, cheap AND healthy, you have no excuse not to try this!
An optional but added bonus is the turmeric at the end which can help with digestion and is highly anti inflammatory especially as its absorption is greatly increased by the addition of black pepper.
Even if you’re kale-phobic chances are that you’ll like this salad due to the delicious, juicy pomegranate seeds which give a lovely pop but also lend loads of flavour to the kale base, plus the creamy tahini (sesame seed paste) lime dressing on the kale also covers the flavour meaning this is one dish that even the kale haters won’t have to force down!
If you’re not a lover of tahini either then you can sub it for almond butter.
To bulk out the rest of the salad I used leftover cucumber, sweet red pepper and flaked almonds but you can use whatever salad/veg you have in your fridge.
Nourishing nutritional benefits
Due to the mix of kale, tahini and almonds this salad is also a good source of plant based calcium for those who are dairy intolerant/vegan. See here for more info on plant based calcium.
Annnnnd the kale is also a good source of Vitamin K1 which is great for bones so it’s a double wammy in terms of bone benefits which is great for anyone who may be on a dairy free/vegan diet and finally the pomegranate seeds are an excellent source of antioxidants, so your body will love you for eating this one!
So I bet when lots of you think about a nacho bowl you think of something loaded with cheese and that’s primarily where most of the flavour comes from?
Well not this one! And it’s dairy free!
I also added some roasted BBQ coconut flakes which add another dimension of flavour and a light crispy texture to this nacho bowl.
I also made the guacamole from scratch (although i didn’t have any tomatoes) and used the remainder of a homemade pickled chilli sauce too but you can always just add chopped chilli/chilli flakes if want to add a spicy kick.
The “nachos” that I used here were almond, flax and nutritional yeast based ones from Raw health but I’ve also used normal maize flour tortilla based “nachos” before, so choose your favourite but try to choose good quality ones with minimal ingredients.
Super nourishing, super simple and with easily sourced ingredients, how can you not love this one?!
This dip is simple but really quite tasty, it’s now in my top 3 favourite homemade dips and will definitely be a regular staple of mine and hopefully for you too. I used it as a dip for the “chips” but it would also work well as a spread for some crackers/oatcakes.
Healthier carrot chips & creamy pea puree
This recipe is simple, tasty and quick. Let the tomatoes roast & pasta cook while you grab the other ingredients and then all you need to do is blend and serve up. Delicious, homemade, full of goodness pasta sauce with pizza flavours thanks to the cheese, basil & tomato combo.
|Healthy homemade pizza flavoured spaghetti sauce
Nutritious pizza flavoured sauce
You also get lovely lycopene (powerful antioxidant) nutrition from the cooked tomatoes here (better absorbed from cooked instead of raw toms) and at least 1/5 day, if not more, depending on what kind of pasta/spaghetti noodles you use. I’ve used carrot and courgette noodles in the past and also regular spelt pasta, they all taste great!
Wholegrain spelt pasta, great partner for this pizza-esque sauce