Baked Harissa Tofu [Vegan & Gluten Free]

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 2-4
Prep: 35 mins + overnight (8-12hrs)
Cooking: 30-35 mins
Type: Main meal
Tools: Chopping board(s), small frying pan, frying spatula, small bowl, rolling pin or large spoon, sharp knife, fork, large measuring jug, kitchen paper, large bowl, kitchen film, baking tray, parchment paper

Notes: This recipe contains: B-Vitamins, Vitamin C & E, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, copper, iron, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc and per serving (based on 4) contains a low quantity of added sugar*, saltand saturated fats*. *Depending upon the variety and quantity of paste (or preserve) or the quantity of oil, maple syrup and/or added salt used.

As we approach salad and tasty sandwich (aka picnic) season (although this still seems like a million miles away!), it’s still a good idea to have some new and tasty ideas up our sleeves; such as a new flavour of tofu to throw into the mix! 

Feeling inspired by our latest use of Middle Eastern, N. African and African flavours, we decided to make some baked harissa tofu! We created a marinade by trying to complement the existing ingredients/flavours in our brand of harissa paste. Feel free to do the same by using our ingredient list as a guide or just show some tofu love by giving our tasty recipe a try! The initial prep takes no time at all and the rest of the tofu magic is finished while you sleep or are away at work!

As always, tofu is a small labour of love. We cannot vouch for how the tofu will taste if you only marinade it for a short period of time (as we haven’t done this ourselves), but with all our other types of marinated tofu, a minimum of 4-6 hrs usually produces the best flavours; if possible, 8-12hrs is even is always recommended! 

A few other good things to note include:

  • Depending on what you are using your tofu for, chop it to your desired size before marinating. Tip: Larger and wider pieces could make a tasty layer in a sandwich! If you are making tofu ‘cubes’ and want them crunchier (because maybe you are using them in a soup or salad), try baking them for an additional 5 mins or so. NB: we baked our tofu in a fan-assisted oven. 
  • The harrisa tofu tastes delicious, but feel free to use more of the paste in the marinade (if you can afford to do so). Alternatively you could amp up the flavour by giving it a spicy kick! We might try this next time by adding a ‘hot paprika’ or a hot chilli powder into the marinade.
  • If you do not have preserved lemon, add an additional tablespoon of lemon juice and an extra pinch of salt instead.
  • We were not aware that there are actually two types of cumin seeds (white and dark)! It just goes to show how much we actually paid attention to them because coincidently, we had both types in our cupboard. The ‘white’ seeds aren’t really white, just a lot lighter than the darker ones; feel free to use whatever you have.

Happy cooking everyone! 🙂



+++++++++++1                       Block firm tofu (=1 tetrapak)
+++++++++++½ tsp               White cumin Seeds
+++++++++++¼ tsp               Caraway Seeds
+++++++++++6 g                   Garlic clove (about 2)
+++++++++++40g                  Spring Onion (2 large)
+++++++++++2½ tbsp           Rapeseed oil
+++++++++++30g                  Harissa paste
+++++++++++10g                   Preserved lemon paste
+++++++++++1 tbsp               Lemon juice
+++++++++++1 tbsp               Maple syrup
+++++++++++2 tbsp              Balsamic vinegar
+++++++++++½ tsp                Mild paprika
+++++++++++½ tsp                Ground ginger
+++++++++++1/8-1/2 tsp      Mild or hot chilli Powder
+++++++++++                         Pinch of salt & ground black pepper

Need an easy-print recipe? Print here. 🙂



1. Drain the tofu. Place and press it between two heavy chopping boards or weighted plates to express any excess water. Leave for 30 mins. Tip: You can also line the bottom board or plate with some kitchen paper to help absorb the excess liquid.

2. Meanwhile, heat a dry frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add ½ tsp cumin seeds and ¼ tsp caraway seeds. Dry fry until lighted toasted. Tip: They will become lightly golden, fragrant and some might even start popping as they are toasted. Transfer them into a small bowl. Grind them with the flat end of a rolling pin or the back of a large spoon until a coarse powder is achieved. Tip: If you own a pestle and mortar, use this instead! 

3. Peel, slice and then crush the garlic with the back of a fork. Tip: If you have a garlic press, use this instead! Wash, trim the ends and then finely slice and chop the spring onion.

4. Prepare the marinade. Place 2½ tbsp rapeseed oil, 30g harissa paste, 10g preserved lemon, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tbsp maple syrup, 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, ½ tsp mild paprika, ½ tsp ground ginger, 1/8-1/2 tsp chilli powder (if using) and the ground cumin and caraway seed mixture into a large measuring jug. Season it with a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Whisk together until thoroughly combined. Taste and season the mixture as necessary. Add the garlic and spring onion. Whisk to combine.

5. Drain the tofu. Pat it dry with some kitchen paper. Place in onto the chopping board and chop into ½-¾ inch cubes or whatever size pieces you prefer. Gently transfer the tofu into a large bowl or baking dish. Pour over the marinade. Gently stir and toss the tofu in the marinade until all pieces are thoroughly coated. Cover the bowl (or dish) with a piece of kitchen film and refrigerate the tofu overnight (or as long as possible).

6. Heat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF. Line a baking tray with a sheet of parchment paper. Remove the tofu from the fridge and give it a good stir. Transfer it onto the tray in a single layer. Pour any remaining marinade over the tofu. When the oven is ready, place the tray onto the middle oven shelf. Bake for 16mins. Remove, turn the pieces over. Place the tray back into the oven. Bake for a further 15-16mins. Remove and allow to cool.

7. Serve over a vegetable and grain-based salad, as a soup topper (aka tofu croutons!), in a wrap, or over a savoury rice or couscous dish.


Tip: Refrigerate any leftover tofu in an air-tight and resealable container; consume within 3-5 days. Alternatively, store and freeze; defrost, reheat and consume within 4-6wks. 


Curried Chickpeas & Sweet Potato Dinner Bowl

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 1
Prep & Cooking Time: 30-50* minutes (*Dependant upon cooking methods used!)

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & K, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc and is low in salt, sugar and saturated fats!

Who doesn’t love a great (healthy!) salad bowl- especially one that contains chickpeas and a fantastic curry flavour?! Well here’s a lovely, simple and versatile recipe that provides just that; chickpeas…check, enticing curry flavours…check, fantastic colours and a lovely crunch factor…of course! 😀

We used some leftover roasted sweet potato, but feel free to use any of your favourite seasonal salad vegetables, or any leftover roasted or steamed vegetables you might have knocking around! It’s worth noting that when you use curry paste straight from the jar, it tastes realllly spicy!…So adjust the quantity to your own preferences!

We have no doubt that this light and delicious curried-salad option is perfect for those summer days ahead! #getreadyfortheheatwaveUK #stayhydrated #SPF50 #alwayswearsunglasses



+++++++++++++++++++++++++70g     Sweet potato
+++++++++++++++++++++++++40g     Kale
+++++++++++++++++++++++++150g   Cooked chickpeas
+++++++++++++++++++++++++80g     Green bell pepper
+++++++++++++++++++++++++30g     Red onion
+++++++++++++++++++++++++60g     Salad tomato
+++++++++++++++++++++++++16g      Radishes
+++++++++++++++++++++++++1/2       Lemon
+++++++++++++++++++++++++3g        Extra virgin olive oil
+++++++++++++++++++++++++3g        Curry paste (we used masala!)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++3g        Pumpkin seeds (unsalted)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++             Salt and Ground black pepper



1. Heat the oven to 200C/400F. Wash and scrub the potato. Pierce the flesh several times with a fork. Place it onto a baking tray. Spray it with low-fat cooking oil. Bake in the oven for 30-40mins or until tender. Remove. Allow it to cool slightly and then chop it into bite-sized pieces.

Tip: If you are lacking time (or can’t stand the heat in the kitchen!), you could dice the potato (into bite-sized cubes) and place it on a baking tray under a heated grill for about 15-20mins, OR wrap the potato in a piece of kitchen paper and cook it in the microwave for 4-5mins (or until tender).

2. Wash and then place the kale into a streamer pot. Bring to a boil. Simmer and steam for about 5mins or until tender. Drain.

3. In the meantime, open, drain and rinse the chickpeas (if applicable). We used some of our prepared slow cooker ones!

4. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and then chop the bell pepper into cubes.

5. Peel and finely slice the onion (dice if preferred!).

6. Wash, remove the stem and dice the tomato.

7. Wash, remove the stalk and then thinly slice the radish.

8. Wash the lemon; grate some zest, slice in half and then juice half of it.

9. Place the chickpeas into a small bowl. Pour over the lemon juice and oil. Add the curry paste. Mix to thoroughly coat.

10. Place the potato, kale, bell pepper, onion, tomato, radish and lemon zest into a large serving bowl. Throw in the chickpeas and scatter over the seeds.



Toss the salad together. Taste and season as necessary.





Here’s another version that we’ve previously made!

Curried chickpeas, garlicky kale and broccoli with some fresh salad veggies. 🙂

Potato Salad w/Quinoa

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6-8
Prep & Cooking Time: 40 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamins A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, has no added sugar and (per serving) is low in salt and fat! 

It’s been a while folks! Many apologies but we both have had other commitments on the go; like most people we’re finding life to be a fine balancing act!…Hopefully we can now tempt you with another delicious salad straight from our kitchen to yours; for the lovers of salads, potatoes and/or summer alike!

In short, our salad is simple, quick-ish (well, depending on how fast you can chop potatoes!), versatile and full of great flavours; enjoy it on your lunch break or at part of your next picnic or summer BBQ (as a main or side dish)! There’s no need to buy potato salad ever again (especially the ones drowned in mayo)!

It’s definitely not your typical ‘eggy mayo-based’ potato salad containing over 30 grams of fat! There’s no eggy mayo in our salad, just plenty of veggies (but we wouldn’t have it any other way!), along with some quinoa for additional substance and a delicious nutty taste!

Yes, we were never big fans of ‘authentic mayo’…but the store-bought dairy-free (DF) versions don’t rock our world either! Our DF mayo is tangy, creamy and easily adjusted to suit your personal taste. Try experimenting with different milks, nuts and oils; perhaps a tahini or avocado based dressing is more your thing?! It’s worth noting that some combinations work better than others; we’ve previously made this ‘mayo’ with flaxseed oil…and unless you like it’s distinct and strong flavour, we wouldn’t recommend it (save it for your soups, curries and smoothies instead)! 


Happy summer solstice everyone; we hope that you’re all having a great weekend! 😀 #longestdayoftheyear #13weeksofglorioussummertogo






Place the cashews into a bowl of cold water. Allow them to soak.



In the meantime, place the quinoa into a sieve. Rinse it under cold water for 30 seconds. Cook it according to the packet instructions and then allow to cool.

Ours took 15 mins. 🙂



Wash and quarter the potatoes.



Place them into a large sauepan full of cold water. Add a little salt (if desired). Cover with a lid. Bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for approx. 6-8 minutes or until just ‘fork ready’. Drain in a large colander. Allow to cool slightly. NB: Please be vigilant! If your potatoes become too soft…you’ll end up having to make ‘mashed potato salad’!



In the meantime, peel and dice the shallots. Wash the bell pepper, remove the core and then finely chop it. Wash, trim the ends and finely dice the celery.



Wash, peel trim the ends and then grate the carrot. Wash and dice the cucumber.



Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion.


Wash, dry and remove the coriander leaves from the stem; finely chop.



Place a large non-stick frying water over a medium-low heat. Add 1-2 tbsp. of water. When it begins to bubble…



…add the shallot, bell pepper and celery.



Stir together. Cover with a lid. Steam-fry for about 4-5 minutes or until tender. Stir it occasionally; add more water as necessary. Remove from the heat.



If necessary, transfer the vegetables into a sieve and drain off any excess water.



Meanwhile, prepare the dairy-free mayo! Drain the cashews. Place them into a blender. Add the milk and the yoghurt.



Blend until smooth.



Add the vinegar, lemon juice, mustard powder and paprika. Season it to taste with the some black pepper.



Blend until combined. Pour in the oil whilst the blender is still running. Blend until it’s thick, creamy and thoroughly combined. Scrape the sides down with a silicone spatula before pouring it over the salad.


Salad Assembly!

Place the potatoes into a large resealable container or serving bowl (as appropriate).



Add the shallots, bell pepper, celery, carrot, cucumber half of the spring onion and parsley (reserve a little for a garnish if desired).



Pour over the ‘mayo’.



Using a spatula, gently fold the ingredients through the ‘mayo’ until coated. Taste and season as necessary.



Add the quinoa.



Gently fold it through the salad. Add a bit more yoghurt if a ‘wetter’ mixture is desired.Top with the remaining spring onion and a sprinkle of paprika (*optional).

Now it’s ready to be stored in the fridge (if applicable) or taken to your next family BBQ or picnic! …Along with those Baked Beans! 🙂



Serve a portion…



…garnished with some parsley (if desired!).




We added a lot more yoghurt the next day as the quinoa absorbed some of the ‘mayo’ overnight! NB: We also added some fresh dill into this batch; it made a very tasty but almost  ‘Russian/Polish’ type salad! Yum! 🙂

Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; best consumed within 3-4 days.

Plant-Based Paella

Healthy Recipes, Meatless Monday

Serves: 4
Prep & Cooking Time: 40-45 mins (*Dependent upon the rice used!)
Type: Main Meal
Tools: Chopping board, sharp knife, veggie peeler, large frying pan or paella dish, frying spatula, measuring jug, a large sheet of aluminium foil, large pot, large bowl

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium and (per serving) is low in added sugar, salt and sat fats!

It feels like the beginning of summer (at least in the SE of England!) has finally arrived and what better way to embrace it than to fill your kitchen with the delicious aromas of Spanish cuisine! …or in this case, our tasty and healthful paella!

Personally we not only love the taste, but the way that this dish is pronounced: “pah/EH/yah”! Even the sound brings a smile to our face! It’s certainly a dish not to feel intimated by; anyone can create this at home!

Paella is a dish that was named after its cooking pan (and not a reference to its ingredients) and began its origin by being prepared and consumed by the workers and labourers of Valencia (a town in Eastern Spain)(¹). It’s now appreciated by many worldwide (for its delicious flavours and minimal preparation- only to name a few!) and has been adapted to suit any diet or budget! We kept the cost of ours to a minimum; the most expensive item was the saffron… but that’s no surprise!

What constitutes an authentic paella is debatable (obviously ours is not!) however, the Spanish are very passionate, especially about good food and that should be respected. Nonetheless, you can’t escape the fact that this is a dish where anything goes… and however you decide to prepare yours, just remember to keep it vibrant, tasty and memorable!  

Happy cooking everyone! 🙂

Quick Food Facts:

  • We used brown long grain rice, but traditional paella rice (bomba) will undoubtedly cook much faster! But as we’ve mentioned previously regarding brown rice…”nutritionally speaking it provides longer term energy and greater satiety”!
  • We own an authentic paella pan but it’s unfortunately too big for our current stove top! 😦 If you have the means, this pan can make all the difference to your paella; it helps to create that delicious crust (socarrat) at the bottom of the dish!  
  • Our paella uses a variety of veggies that are now in season; delicious asparagus, carrots, peas and spinach* (*if you decide to follow our lead; we served ours with a bed of it)! 
  • This dish provides you with about 4 portions (per serving) towards your 5-A-Day! #youcanneverhavetoomanyvegetables




NB: Adjust the water and stock measurements according to the instructions on your rice packet! We didn’t use true wine,; there was no alcohol in it, it was more like an ‘extract’!

Need an easy-print recipe? Print here. 🙂



 Peel and dice the garlic and white onion. Wash, remove the core and then chop the bell pepper into small cubes. Wash, peel, trim the ends and roughly chop the carrot. Wash, remove the stem and halve the tomatoes. Wash and dry half of the quantity of the thyme and parsley; remove the leaves from their stem and finely chop (you’ll prepare the rest later on).



Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large, non-stick frying pan ( or paella dish) over a medium-low heat.



Add the garlic and onion. Gently fry for 1-2 mins or until softened.



Add the bell pepper and carrot. Stir to mix. Gently fry for a further 2-3 mins or until softened.


Add 125ml wine (if using, or just use more stock instead). Stir through. Allow it to simmer for 1-2 mins or until evaporated.



Add 250g rice, 320g cooked legumes, 100g peas, 3g thyme and 4g parsley. Stir to combine.

NB: 320g of cooked legumes =about 1.5tins or 160g dried. We cooked a variety overnight and used approx. 180g cooked chickpeas and 140g of cooked red kidney beans.



Add 350ml stock, 220ml water, 20g tomato purée, saffron (as much as preferred) and 2g smoked paprika. Stir together.

Use as much or as little saffron as your heart and/or wallet desires… (but you definitely don’t need to use more than a pinch)!



Add the cherry tomatoes. Season it with some salt and a few grinds of black pepper to taste.



Cover the pan with a lid or a sheet of kitchen foil. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cook it for 20-30 mins or until the rice is cooked* (*refer to the packet instructions). Remove from the heat and dispose of the foil.

Tip: Ours took approx 30 mins to cook (and we added a bit more water halfway through); as we’ve mentioned, it’s really dependant on the rice you decide to use! NB:Your rice should be tender but never mushy!



In the meantime, prepare the rest of the thyme and parsley. Drain and rinse the olives. Wash and trim the tough/bottom ends off of the asparagus. Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion. Wash the lemon (chop it into wedges or slices!).



Meanwhile, place a large pot full of cold water over a medium-low heat. Bring to the boil. Add the asparagus. Reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 3-4 mins or until just tender (where they just begin to bend!). Remove from the heat. Drain. If desired, transfer the cooked spears using a slotted spoon or serving tongs into a large bowl of cool water.

The idea behind this is to help cool the internal core (to prevent them from cooking any further)…helping them to maintain their vibrant green colour as a result! You could use ‘ice water’ but risk serving cold asparagus!



Now transform your dish!



 Garnish the paella with the olives, asparagus, lemon and remaining herbs. Serve the paella from the table for the whole family to enjoy!




Transfer the paella into a large serving bowl with any other desired veggies!

We served ours over a bed of spinach!




 Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container (ideally within an hour after cooking); reheat and consume within 1-2 days. Alternatively freeze in one or more resealable containers; defrost, reheat and consume within 1-2 months.

NB: When reheating, always check to make sure the rice is steaming hot all the way through and do not reheat the rice more than once. 



If preferred…

    • Feel free to experiment with your perfect vegetable and flavour combination!
    • This is a healthy dish, but want to further reduce the fat content, just use a low-fat frying spray instead of rapeseed (canola) oil.
  • Use your favourite type of rice (but we recommend brown basmati or brown long grain rice!).
  • Try using a different type of legume (a dry or tinned variety), some lentils, or maybe tofu or tempeh instead! If your diet permits, add a fresh medley of fish and/or seafood!


History Source:
1. The Paella Company

Olive Pesto

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6-8
Prep & Cooking Time: 35 minutes

Notes:This recipe contains: Vitamins C, K & E, protein, fibre, iron, zinc, potassium, and (*per serving/based on six) is low in salt, sugar and has a moderate amount of fats!

Here’s a quick and delicious midweek recipe that will provide you with maximum taste satisfaction and minimal discomfort to make (#whohateswashingup)! 

We’ve come across lots of olive pesto recipes (that are more or less the same), but we decided to adapt our own using the ingredients (and quantities) that suited us. We felt that as the staple ingredient was olives, adding over 40 grams of pine nuts and 1/2 cup of oil would make it too rich! Pesto is ‘rich’ at the best of times and as much as we enjoy it, it’s not something we prepare every week, but it is a lovely thing to have in moderation! 

Adapt the recipe to suit your pesto needs; more garlic?… lemon?… basil?… another type of olive?… or less oil and no seeds/nuts to further reduce the fat content?? Experiment and enjoy!

  Oh and here’s wishing a very Happy Birthday to our dear friend Kelly!




+++++++++++++++++++++++++4g       Garlic cloves
+++++++++++++++++++++++++1          Lemon
+++++++++++++++++++++++++70g     Green olives (pitted/in brine)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++40g     Fresh basil
+++++++++++++++++++++++++12g      Fresh flat leaf parsley
+++++++++++++++++++++++++10g      Pumpkin seeds (*optional)
+++++++++++++++++++++++++60ml  Olive oil
+++++++++++++++++++++++++            Salt & Ground black pepper
+++++++++++++++++++++++++            Water



Peel the garlic. Wash, zest and juice the lemon.



Drain and wash the olives. Wash and dry the basil and the parsley.



With a food processor running, drop the garlic in. Process until minced.



Add the lemon zest and juice, seeds and oil.



Process until puréed. Add the olives, basil and parsley. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste. Process until combined; the mixture will be a bit coarse. NB: With the machine still running, add a little water to thin the pesto out slightly.



Transfer the pesto into an air-tight and resealable container.



How to use the pesto:

Simply mix some into freshly cooked pasta (we recommend wholewheat or buckwheat!) or zoodles!; alternatively you can follow these simple steps…

1. Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. Drain.
2. Add the pesto into a small bowl.
3  Add some cooking water into the pesto.
4. Stir and mix together.
5. Transfer the cooked pasta into a large mixing bowl.
6. Add the pesto mixture.
7. Toss and mix to coat.
8. Serve in a serving bowl; garnish as desired.


As it’s ‘British Tomato Week‘, try adding some to your dish!




Keep refrigerated and use within 5 days. Alternatively store in individual air-tight containers and freeze; defrost and use within for 1-2 months.

**Not too long ago ‘My Vegan Kitchen’ posted a useful ‘pesto storage’ tip! It’s ideal for portion control and of course, saving yourself valuable time in the kitchen!

Beetroot & Orange Salad

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 2
Prep & Cooking Time: 35-45 minutes

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C & E, protein, fibre, calcium, magnesium, manganese, potassium, zinc and is low in salt, (added) sugars and fats!

This salad is an oldie but a goodie…but now with the addition of quinoa! Our recipe is not only great for the lovers of quinoa, beetroot and orange, but perfect for when it’s too hot to turn on your oven, you don’t have time to spend hours in the kitchen and/or you simply fancy something light, fresh and delicious!

Annoyingly our local shops did not have any fresh mint or fresh beetroot last week when we prepared this salad… but considering ‘beetroot season’ is normally July-October (at least in the UK), we shouldn’t have been surprised! Apologises for the lack of colour; fresh mint would have not have gone a miss! If you are fortunate enough to source fresh beetroot, cook it for approx. 30-35 minutes in a saucepan (or until fork ready)! Although precooked (but not pickled!) beetroot is still delicious, like most ‘fresh’ varieties of food…its taste is unparalleled. 🙂 

Enjoy this nutritious salad with a drizzle of agave and/or olive oil, or perhaps a homemade mustard vinaigrette dressing! Although in all honestly, we won’t be using any ‘dressing’ the next time that we make it! The beetroot and orange provides you with volumes of natural flavour and meal satisfaction! 🙂 


Quick facts:

  • Beetroot, is a great source of iron, folate, nitrates, betaine, magnesium among other antioxidants and has been a trending vegetable over at least the last six years or so (but that’s no surprises here)! The BDA have highlighted reviews that have suggested that drinking beetroot juice is linked to a modest improvement in exercise performance, as well as producing a modest reduction in ‘lowering blood pressure’ (seen in this study and this study!); all from its nitrate content (discussed again here). Additionally, a 2010 study suggested it could help combat the onset of dementia…but like all studies, further research is needed…but there’s definitely no harm with adding more of it into your diet! 
  • Oranges contain soluble fibre, calcium, folate, potassium and are naturally rich in the antioxidant ‘Vitamin C’! …Which is great in helping to support a healthy immune system and working with other antioxidants to possibly counteract the cellular damage within our bodies!




+++++++++++++++++++++++200g             Dried Quinoa
+++++++++++++++++++++++300-400g   Cooked beetroot (not pickled!)
+++++++++++++++++++++++420g             Oranges
+++++++++++++++++++++++2g                  Dried or fresh mint
+++++++++++++++++++++++30g                Walnuts
+++++++++++++++++++++++10ml              Agave syrup (optional)
+++++++++++++++++++++++10ml              Extra virgin olive oil (optional)



If you are using fresh beetroot, cook this first; drain and allow it to cool before using! Otherwise, cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions. Allow to cool.



Meanwhile, open and drain the beetroot (if applicable); chop or slice as desired!



In the meantime, slices the oranges; remove any thick pieces of pith and the rind.



Wash, dry and chop the mint (if applicable). Roughly chop and/or gently crush the nuts.



Assemble the salad. Spoon the quinoa into a serving bowl (or use a plate!). Scatter, layer or toss the orange and beetroot onto the quinoa! Sprinkle over the mint. Scatter over the nuts. Season it to taste (as necessary). Drizzle over the syrup and oil (if applicable).







NHS Choices

Baked Beans

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6-8
Prep: 30 minutes ( + 12hrs to soak dried beans!)
Cooking Time: 8 hrs (On a low S.C. setting)

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, mg, manganese, potassium, zinc, and (per serving/based on 8 servings) is low in salt, saturated fats and have a moderate quantity of sugar!

Ah, lovely baked beans! As the rain and cooler weather sets in they become even more desirable! 

We’ve tried various slow cooker bean recipes in the past (predominately using ‘white beans’), but we’ve found that the recipes that use a mixture of beans to be far more satisfying! Why limit yourself to one type anyways?! 

Our baked beans are not your typical ‘British’ bean that you’ll find in your local supermarket; they are not ‘tomato-based’ and we didn’t use a ‘haricot’ variety, nor do they have excessive levels of salt and sugar! Our slow cooker recipe produces a sauce that is not too salty, sweet or rich, just delicious; the treacle and brown sugar provides a lovely deep flavour!  🙂

The only possible amendment you may want to make is with regards to the volume of water. With about two hours to spare, we noticed that the sauce didn’t have the right consistency…so we added a slurry of corn flour! The choice is yours; use slightly less water (approx. 400-500ml) or just add the slurry as we have instructed. Also, feel free to adjust the flavours as you see fit; try a spicier or barbecue flavour next time!  

Serve these beans as a main meal or whip up a batch to take to your next family BBQ!

Quick Food Facts:

  • Beans, the variety and their health benefits are various and many! However (particularly for those following a plant-based diet), they can be a great source of: protein, complex carbohydrates, soluble fibre, B-Vitamins, iron, calcium, zinc, magnesium, manganese and potassium (just to name a few!). They can also help you meet your 5-A-Day!
  • One serving of our beans (the recipe makes eight!) provides about 2.5 servings of your 5-A-Day; the typical tinned variety only provides you with one!  🙂







Place the dried beans into a large bowl of cold water. Soak overnight for 12 hours. Drain and thoroughly rinse.

We used a mixture of beans; 230g cannellini, 130g black turtle and 100g of red kidney beans!



Peel and dice the onion and garlic. Wash, trim the ends, peel and then dice the carrot. Wash, trim the ends and finely chop the celery. Wash, remove the stem and core and then dice the bell pepper. Wash and dry the thyme and then remove the leaves from its stem.



  • Heat 1-3 tsp oil into a large, non-stick saucepan or frying pan over a medium-low heat. Tip: Alternatively, use some low-fat cooking oil or a steam-fry technique to soften the vegetables!
  • Add the onion, garlic clove, carrot, celery, bell pepper and garlic. Mix together. Gently fry for 3 mins or until softened. Tip: covering with a lid will also help to soften the vegetables.
  • In the meantime, boil 1.6L water. Prepare 500ml stock according to the packet instructions (unless you are using your secret homemade variety!).
  • Add the thyme. Season it to taste with salt and black pepper. Stir together.



  • Transfer the beans into a slow cooker.
  • Transfer the vegetable mixture into the slow cooker.
  • Add 2 tsp sugar, 100g tomato purée, ¼ cup cider vinegar,1 tsp mustard powder and 2 tbsp treacle.
  • Pour in the stock and 1.1L of freshly boiled water. Stir together. Tip: Always make sure there is enough ‘liquid’ to cover your ingredients.
  • Create a ‘slurry’. Add 50g corn flour into a small dish with equal parts water. Stir until the flour has dissolves. Whilst stirring, pour it into the slow cooker. Mix thoroughly to combine.
  • Cover with a lid. Cook on a low-heat setting for 8 hours. Tip: Cooking with acidic ingredients can cause your beans to have a slightly ‘firmer’ texture. However, we found the majority of our beans to be soft and/or creamy.



Serve warm. Ladle into a serving bowl. If desired, serve it with a small bread roll and/or additional vegetables!

We used a small GF roll and some steamed red cabbage! 🙂





Refrigerate any any leftovers in an air tight and resealable container; reheat and consume within 3-5 days. Alternatively, store and freeze; defrost, reheat and consume within 1-2 months.