Wholesome Healthy Winter Warmers

News| 26th July 2022
Wholesome Healthy Winter Warmers
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This article was brought to you by LifeShape Clinic.

Ahh Winter… the time for dusting off the slow cooker and snuggling up with those you love with a warm cup of chai. Why is it when the cold weather hits, our guilty cravings come out to play? And what if we could turn those guilty cravings into guilt free treats! Too good to be true I hear you say… well read on.

If cold weather makes you crave comforting food, you’re not alone. The days are shorter, it’s dark by the time you get home and something about that winter weather has our families and little tummies craving a big bowl of something warm and wholesome, but those family winter favourites can be higher in calories if you’re not mindful. The good news is, there are plenty of ways you can nourish your body with hearty, winter warmers without the extra fat and kilojoules.

Creamy Tuscan Chicken

We can all admit, potato and pasta dishes are definitely at the top of the comforting family favourites list. With a few tweaks, these staples can be made healthier for you and your family. Dreaming of a jacket potato? Switch it up for a baked sweet potato (100g per person), filled with beans, lean mince and dolloped with ricotta cheese or plain, low fat natural yoghurt. Low fat natural yoghurt is such a versatile ingredient, and can be substituted in many creamy sauce-based dishes. For example, in this Creamy Tuscan Chicken, swapping out the traditional butter and heavy cream for low fat natural yoghurt and low-fat cottage cheese. Quenching that winter craving, and leaving you satisfied and fuller for longer, even the little ones won’t notice the difference!

Serves: 4

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Dietary category: Gluten Free

NUTRITION PER SERVE
Energy (cal): 409cal
Protein: 60g
Fat: 13g
Carbohydrate: 16g

Ingredients

500g chicken breast, sliced

Spray olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

4 cloves garlic, crushed

200g spinach leaves

125g sun dried tomatoes

1 teaspoon onion powder

200g low-fat cottage cheese

200g low-fat Greek Yoghurt

200ml low-fat milk

50g parmesan cheese, grated

1 tablespoon tomato puree

20g basil leaves, torn

Method

  1. Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat. Spray with oil spray. Cook the chicken until lightly golden. Once cooked, set aside.
  2. Respray the pan lightly with oil, and cook onion and garlic until onion turns translucent.
  3. Add spinach and tomatoes to the pan and toss until spinach is wilted. Add the chicken pieces back to the pan.
  4. Meanwhile, add the cheeses, milk, yoghurt, and tomato puree to a blender and blitz until smooth and creamy.
  5. Add the sauce and basil to the pan. Bring to a light simmer and promptly remove from the heat so it does not separate.
  6. Serve. 

Brandy Apple Glazed Pork

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Brandy, apple, pork, what a trio! It’s no secret a sip of Brandy instantly warms you from your head to your toes, A sauce made with brandy can have the same -- albeit slightly more subtle – effect. Adding cinnamon and honey, like we have in this dish, will lift the sauce and give it a touch of sophistication!  Healthy, wholesome food doesn’t have to be boring and mundane. This delicious dish is sure to impress dinner guests, and even the little ones!

Serves: 4

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Dietary category: Gluten free, Dairy free option

Nutritional Information (PER SERVE)
Energy (cal): 341cal
Protein: 37.3g
Fat: 8.2g
Saturated Fat: 3.6g
Carbohydrate: 27.7g
Sodium: 74.9mg

Ingredients 

4 x 150g lean pork cutlets

3/4 cup salt reduced chicken stock

150g sugar snap peas

100g green beans, ends trimmed

12 spears of asparagus, ends removed

2 tbsp light unsalted butter

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tbsp honey

2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced

2 Pink Lady apples, peeled, cored and sliced

2 tbsp brandy

1/2 cup fresh sage leaves

Pepper

Method

  1. Over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a large pan. Add sage leaves and cook until golden, about 2 minutes. After transferring these to a plate, cook the pork in the same pan for 1 1/2 minutes on each side. Transfer the pork to a plate, covering with foil.
  2. Add one tablespoon of butter and honey to the same pan. Cook the apples in this mixture over medium heat, stirring frequently or until pears are tender, about 2 - 3 minutes. Transfer this mixture to a plate and cover with foil.
  3. Over a high heat, add brandy to the pan and stir for 30 seconds. Reduce to medium heat, add stock and simmer until liquid reduces. Season with pepper.
  4. Meanwhile, place beans, asparagus and sugar snap peas into a microwave safe dish. Add a small amount of water to container, cover with a lid and cook in microwave for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Divide vegetables and pork on serving plates and top with brandy apples. Drizzle with the sauce and garnish with sage leaves.

Baked Apple and Cinnamon Porridge

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Understandably, a bowl of cold cereal just doesn’t cut it on those cold winter mornings, time to bring out the oats! If you’re in a hurry in the mornings, go for quick oats (check the label to ensure there are no added ingredients), pop in the microwave and top with warming spices such as cinnamon, cardamom and ginger. On the weekends when you have a little more time, consider stewing some apples to put on top for a delicious and sweet breakfast. We have added our favourite oats recipe below, simple, delicious, and everything wonderful, thank us later.

Serves: 1

Prep Time: 1 minute

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Dietary category: Gluten free, Dairy free

Ingredients

40g porridge oats

1 small green apple, grated

200ml almond milk

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon pepitas

Cinnamon sugar

Method

1.     Combine the apple, porridge oats, cinnamon and almond milk in a saucepan and boil until it has thickened.

2.     Pour the porridge into an ovenproof dish and sprinkle it with the pepitas. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180C for 15 minutes.

3.     Remove the baked porridge from the oven and sprinkle it with cinnamon sugar – return the dish to the oven and bake for a further five minutes.

4.     Remove the dish from the oven and leave to cool for five minutes. Enjoy!

Tips

This recipe is quick and easy to make in the mornings, even quicker if you prep the night before, or make several batches for the work week ahead!

We hope this article full to the brim with delicious wholesome winter warmers inspires you to dust off the wooden spoon and feed you and your family something wonderful this winter. At LifeShape, we believe the road to becoming the best you, through healthy lifestyle and eating choices, doesn’t have to be mundane, time consuming, and unreachable. With hundreds of people across Australia reshaping their lives, shedding the weight, the worries, and living a happier healthier life, there is no reason not to start your journey to meeting the best version of you, today.

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