I’m so excited to bring you today’s post! Recently, Ramsey Health Care got into contact with me asking what my top tips for eating well are. They wanted to explore what the true cost of eating well is. I had to think for a while about this, because I feel if you’re reading this, you probably know the basics -eat all food groups, aim to have a couple of servings of greens per day, get protein in with every meal…. (if you’re still uncertain and are mostly plant based, see my November favourites post for my favourite healthy eating app that isn’t My Fitness Pal). After some pondering, I realised that the one thing that I do every day, often several times per day, is to use my blender. At home, I have a Kenwood two in one food processor and blender that does everything, and here in Germany I have a bullet blender that is perfect for my compact kitchen. It is one of the most versatile gadgets I can think of owning, and the kitchen of my dreams (and my Pinterest page…) would definitely include a Vitamix. For inspiration on how to make the most out of your blender, and to be in with the chance of winning a NutriBullet, keep reading…
Smoothies and Drinks
Starting with the simplest and most obvious option, blenders are essential for anyone who likes smoothies. Although I love to make a host of smoothies, from my pina colada smoothie, to my chocolate peanut butter smoothie bowl and pumpkin pie smoothie, my go-to is a green smoothie. In it’s simplest incarnation, just blend a frozen banana with a big handful of spinach and nut milk. However, my current favourite trick is to add a small handful of frozen cauliflower. It adds very little flavour, but makes the smoothie super thick and means that you are sneaking cruciferous vegetables into your daily intake of veggies. I’m lazy and buy frozen bags of cauliflower, but if you have a more sensitive digestive system, you may wish to pre cook the cauliflower before freezing. Want to up the protein in your smoothies? Nuts, seeds and nut butters all contain good fats and proteins, whilst adding legumes (yes really!) or using soy milk or yoghurt -Alpro makes a protein soy yoghurt -will also add proteins. I also like to use my blender to achieve a smooth, frothy texture when making turmeric lattes. The spices and any extra ingredients get properly incorporated, and the milk gets aerated.
If it weren’t for speedy soups being made, often right before work, I would find myself in the less-than healthy canteen far more often than I do. My favourite zero fuss method is to roast veggies such as tomatoes and peppers, or squash and sweet potato, with a little garlic and onion for a flavoursome base for my soups. I’ll either use a vegetable bouillon or make my own easy stock, and then blend everything together, popping a lid directly on my blender jug for an easy lunch. Make soups feel more hearty and filling by adding beans and grains, blending them in or leaving them chunky. If you eat meat, there are few things more comforting than using leftover roast chicken to make a stock and adding a little of the meat to the finished soup.
If you’re trying to reduce your intake of white, conventional flour, one of the easiest ways to substitute is to make oat flour. Just add the amount of oats that you need to the blender, using a grinding attachment and blend. Easy peasy. For effortless mixing and blending, add your ingredients to your blender. Just remember that most blenders require a little liquid and are pretty powerful, so do be careful to avoid over mixing or working your blender too hard! I love blending dates or roasted squash with half my breakfast oats when making porridge. You can also make easy batters and oat milk this way.
Dips and Spreads
Although a food processor is the easiest way to make hummus and similar dips, you can also use your blender to the same effect. Try my classic or beetroot and walnut hummus, or make an easy white bean dip by adding a clove of garlic, mixed dried herbs and olive oil to a rinsed tin of white beans. If needed, blend the beans in short bursts, and mix the blended and whole beans around in the blender jug to ensure a consistent texture.
To help you kickstart the New Year in a healthy way, I’m really pleased to be offering up a NutriBullet 600 series for one lucky winner. To be in with a chance of winning, fill in the Rafflecopter below. You can enter by subscribing to my brand new newsletter, reposting an Instagram image and by tweeting the competition message. Good luck! I’m afraid that this one will have to be UK only, so sorry to any readers from overseas. Please follow me on Instagram and Twitter if you enter this way, to help me verify your entry and contact you.
Disclaimer: I was offered a voucher in return for writing this post. I chose to spend this voucher on the NutriBullet as a giveaway prize. The prize is non-transferable and arrival cannot be guaranteed before Christmas. All thoughts and opinions are my own.