Healthy, hot breakfasts – Porridge 5 ways

I’ve had a few people say to me recently that they’re not eating healthily because it’s cold.  Now I totally get that the cold makes you crave hot, comforting recipes… but that doesn’t mean you can’t be healthy! Health isn’t an ice-cold salad and limp lettuce leaf.

black ceramic bowl filled with cereal
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Porridge is a super old-school breakfast that in recent years, thanks to instagram and health influencers, has made a comeback but in a variety of jazzier ways.

It’s my go-to every morning at my desk because it’s so quick… and if you’re having it regularly, it’s worth experimenting and messing around with different ingredients, as variety in your diet is good for your gut micro biome! So I’m going to share with you a few of my fave recipes that you can mix and match and play with.

I’ve kept them friendly to all diets – carnivore, omnivore, veggie and vegan – just check the labels of things like jam or pesto if you’re plant-based, naturally 🙂

NB: I make my porridge the Scottish way – oats and water. Feel free to substitute whatever plant milk or dairy you usually use.

Indulgent chocolate orange porridge

  • Approx 30g oats
  • Water (or your plant milk / dairy milk)
  • 1 – 2 satsumas
  • 1 pack of Pret a Manger dark chocolate sea-salt coated almonds

This is the simplest, and probably most indulgent of my regular porridge recipes. I love it for the occasional Friday morning treat.

I make my porridge literally by microwaving my oats with enough water to cover them for approx 2 minutes.

Then you literally stir in your dark chocolate coated almonds, peel your fruit and top with satsuma segments.

Banana & blueberry porridge

  • Approx 30g oats
  • Water (or your plant milk / dairy milk)
  • Sprinkling of chopped almonds
  • 1 small – medium banana
  • Handful of blueberries
  • Optional teaspoon of desiccated coconut
  • Optional tablespoon of protein power (I’d pick a plant-based vanilla for this recipe like the one by MissFits nutrition)

Again, make your porridge oat base via your preferred method – 2 mins in the microwave or on the hob.

If you’re adding in the protein powder, I like to stir it in part way through. Chop your banana while it cooks, and then chuck on your toppings – banana, blueberries, nuts and coconut if you’re using it.

Green Machine Italiana savoury pesto porridge

I LOVE savoury porridge – it’s basically like a breakfast risotto, so if you’re hesitating I’d really encourage you not to knock it till you’ve tried it.

  • Approx 30g oats
  • Water (or your plant milk / dairy milk)
  • 1 – 2 tsps green pesto
  • Chopped sundried tomato
  • 6-10 almonds
  • Optional: 1/2 tsp spirulina
  • Optional: either finely chop 4-5 black olives, or add 20g cheese (be it dairy, plant based – but if vegan cheese go for one that melts!)

Make your oat base (see above) and while hot, stir in your pesto. If you’re using cheese, stir it in now too. Ditto the spirulina (this is just for extra greens more than anything!)

Top with your sundried tomato, almonds, olives (if using) and voila!

Chia, pear and cinnamon porridge

This one requires that you pre-grill your pear if you’re making it at work, just fyi…!

  • Approx 30g oats
  • Water (or your plant milk / dairy milk)
  • Grilled pear with a drizzle of maple syrup (or honey for non-vegans)
  • 1-2 tsps chia seeds
  • Cinnamon to taste – probably 1/2 – 1 tsp

If you’re at home, grill your pear with a light drizzling of maple (you need to judge this by eye and personal preference as to how you like it. I only go for 8 mins or so).

You’re getting the hang of making porridge now, right? Do that. Stir in the cinnamon and chia seeds and leave to soak a moment.

And if you’re at work and you’ve pre-grilled the pear, you’ll want to pop it in the microwave for a few seconds until warm.

Top with a pinch more chia seeds and the rest of your pear. This is also really nice if you chuck a handful of raspberries on too.

Porridge a la Lemsip

  • Approx 30g oats
  • Water (or your plant milk / dairy milk – if you have a cold I’d recommend not having dairy as this creates mucus in the body)
  • 1 – 3 tsp lemon juice (depending how sour you like to go!)
  • 1 tsp honey (or maple for vegans)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1-2 tsp desiccated coconut
  • Pinch of poppyseed to top

This is a nice comforting one if you have a cold. All you do is stir all the ingredients into your porridge. It’s not the prettiest, but it’s good. ❤

Let me know if you try any of these, or if you’d like more as I have a tonne of porridge recipes I use, derived from years of experimentation and my obsessing about reading about nutrition in recent years 🙂 

B xoxo

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Grapefruit

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I love half a red grapefruit in the morning for breakfast, and some studies show it helps burn fat! I like to have mine with a couple of blueberries and strawberries for the additional nutrients ❤

The only thing missing from this breakfast above is protein, so it’s good to have a protein shake, or a scrambled egg, or some smoked salmon alongside if possible. It’s not the end of the world if you can’t but it makes the above the PERFECT breakfast instead of just damn good 😉

If you have fruit in the morning, what do you have?

B xoxo

Zucchini Pizza Party Boats!

10522089_10154074095539571_742486296110860964_nThese little bruschetta inspired babies are more filling than you’d think (I guess zucchini or courgette is basically all water!) and they’re a super fast option for a healthy, pizza craving busting supper after a long day at work.

All you need is:

❤ 1 courgette/zucchini

❤ Some crumbled / chunky chopped goats’ cheese

❤ Chopped plum tomatoes

❤ Black pepper and mixed herbs to taste.

It is this simple:

  1. Preheat your oven to around 180.
  2. Halve your courgettes then halve them again (so you get 4 ‘party boats’ – see picture above!)
  3. Top them with your goats cheese and chopped plum tomatoes. You could also add a little red onion or tuna to vary it.
  4. Place on a baking tray and leave in the oven for around 8 minutes (but it really depends on the power of your oven – check back regularly and some of it will be down to taste – how melty you want the cheese and how soft the courgette!)

You can have these with a mixed salad, I like mine with raw spinach, but you could also have veggies, or kale, or a little quinoa or sweet potato.

They make a nice entree too if you have guests, and they never need know how clean you’re keeping the eating for the evening 😉

Cacao-coconut oatmeal

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It doesn’t get much more indulgent (and still clean!) than this!!

All you have to do is serve yourself the same sized portion of oats you would for porridge… about 1/4 of a cup.

(Make sure your oats aren’t flavoured or anything! All natural here please darlings!)

Stir a heaped tablespoon of raw cacao powder (or sugar free cocoa powder) in to your oats. Fill the bowl with water (you can use almond milk if you prefer but water’s my preference) and stir until oats and powder have now made a chocolate shake looking mix.

Stir in a little honey or agave nectar to taste.

Top your cacao-oatmeal smoothie bowl with a sprinkling of coconut, and think about adding almonds, walnuts, pistachios, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or mint – whatever’s to hand! – to sex it up a little.

Chocolate for breakfast? Who wouldn’t?! And this way it’s totally guilt free!

Egg-free oven oat hotcakes & cinnamon-grilled pear

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I love these for something quick and a bit different in the morning.

To make the hot oatcakes, you will need…

1/2 cup of oats

1/2 scoop protein powder

1/4 cup of water.

Mix until a thick batter. Add a little more water if needed.

 

Stir in as much or as little cinnamon as you’d like and add a pinch of baking powder.

Pop onto a greaseproof paper-lined tray and bake in the oven at around 180 C (or maybe 200 if not a fan oven) for 7 – 2 minutes.

Your sliced pear can go in to, sprinkled with cinnamon, to warm.

Voila. Sooooo crazy easy. Serve with some berries, a drizzle of pure organic maple syrup or honey, and you’re good to go.

5 Minute Spicy Prawn Superbowl

12208777_10153763784549571_4458812694054625097_nWe’re all increasingly busy these days – studies show that mobile devices mean we’re almost never offline from working. No wonder we’re all feeling frazzled. Time (and life!) is short, and so it’s easy to take shortcuts when it comes to nourishing yourself, when really it’s more important we take care of ourselves than ever. I love throwing stuff together that takes less than 10 minutes… and makes me feel better inside and out!

How about all you full time mothers / workers / students out there? Ever feel like you want to be healthy but you just don’t have time? Personally, it has taken me years to get in to cooking, plus I work full time, I have law school in the evenings, and my workouts in the morning and/or lunch tire me out so that when I get home at 8.30/9pm after swinging by Sainsbury’s, I need a quick fix!

Add to that the fact that it’s really easy to look at all these instagram accounts about ‘eating clean’ and/or fitness – Tone it Up, Kayla Itsines, Blogilates – and think prep is going to take forever. After all, who can make meals that look that good, quickly, right?

You can. I can. We can. Meals like this take LESS TIME than an oven pizza, takeaway delivery or microwave meal. So no excuses…

Spicy Prawn SuperBowl
✅5 minutes total prep & cook time*
✅meat free
✅dairy free

*To keep to the 5 minute limit you need microwavable brown rice. Cheating, I know. Or, alternatively, cook up a batch of normal brown rice on a Sunday for the week and just take 1 serving.

Serves 2, or just you, with 1 dinner and 1 lunch.

You need: Brown rice (microwavable), chilli tomato pesto, 1 pack of cooked, peeled prawns, 3 handfuls of spinach, 2 handfuls of kale, 2 spring onions, 1 large tomato, cayenne pepper, black pepper.

Foolproof guide for optimum speed

  1. Microwave the rice for 2 minutes.
  2. Stir fry your prawns, kale, spinach, quickly chop your spring onions and tomato, and throw those in too.
  3. Add two shakes of cayenne paper to the pan, and add black pepper to suit your tastes.
  4. Leave in the pan to sizzle for 1 – 2 minutes on a high heat until it’s all heated through.
  5. Add 1 and a half teaspoons of chilli-tomato pesto to the rice, stir in with the veg and prawns.
  6. Eat half and save the rest for a tasty lunch or supper later in the week.

This is a really filling but fairly healthy supper option that goes well with almost any healthy lifestyle plan you might be following.

What quick fixes do you make when you don’t have any time?