Last week, I talked about starting the new year off on the right note when it comes to taking care of your health. My solution to being healthy this year: “Clean eating.”

Clean eating is an approach to food where you cook and eat with whole foods, with little to no additives, preservatives, or processed ingredients. You eat three-to-four times a day at regular intervals – all with an emphasis on good health and not just weight-loss.

Here are some recipes that I’ve tried to give you an idea on how you can enjoy clean eating – trust me, it can be delicious too.

Breakfast & Snacks

egg muffins recipe

Veggie Egg Muffins

Of late, the mighty muffin tin has been getting the star treatment in my kitchen. Until recently, all I ever used these tins for were occasional baking experiments. Now, I use the muffin tin all the time to whip up multiple batches of savoury egg muffins. (A shout-out goes to my best friend Harpreet, who introduced me to this recipe. Thanks!)

Like most of the recipes I share, you can adapt the ingredients to suit your personal tastes.

For smaller batches, you can also use ramekins to create single-serve dishes. If using a muffin tin, estimate about one egg per cup per person. To cut down on the fat and calories, use only egg whites, two per muffin cup, and omit the cheese.

6 eggs
1/2 cup red pepper, chopped
1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
1/2 cup broccoli, chopped
1/2 cup coriander, finely chopped
1/2 cup green onions, finely chopped
1/2  cup cheddar cheese, shredded
Salt and pepper, to taste
Chilli flakes, to taste (optional)
Olive oil or cooking spray

  • Preheat the oven to 375F.  Brush each muffin cup with a very light coating of olive oil or cooking spray.
  • In a bowl, combine all the vegetables and seasonings. Evenly distribute the veggie mixture into six muffin cups, filling up about 3/4 of the way.
  • Crack one egg into each of the six cups. Lightly scramble and combine the egg with the veggies. Sprinkle desired amount of cheese on top of each cup.
  • Cook the egg muffins for about 20 minutes. The egg muffins are done when it looks like a well-done omelette.
  • Let the tin cool down for a few minutes. Use a knife to loosely separate the egg muffins from the tin.

Serve right away with toast, a fruit bowl or a mixed greens salad. You can make extra servings to enjoy throughout the week for a quick breakfast on-the-go.

 

Wake Up Berry Smoothie

smoothie

This is a basic fruit-based smoothie. You can change up the types of fruit, milk and nuts to suit your preference.

1 banana
1 cup of frozen berries of your choice
1 apple of your choice, shredded or finely chopped (easier to blend)
1/2 cup of pomegranate seeds or arils
1 handful of greens like kale or spinach, washed and hand-shredded into pieces
1 cup Greek-style or homemade yogurt (if you want to go dairy-free, omit the yogurt and increase the amount of nut milk)
Milk of your choice, add for your desired consistency
1 tbsp flaxseed meal (or protein powder of choice)
2 tbsp hemp or chia seeds

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. If the smoothie is too thick, add more milk as needed.

Chill and enjoy! I make my smoothies the night before, so I just need to grab-and-go in the mornings.

*When you add greens, it will probably change the colour of your smoothie so don’t be alarmed! I make my smoothies the night before and by morning, my purpley-pink berry smoothie is a nice shade of green.

 

Cinnamon Bun Smoothie
Adapted from JoyousHealth.ca

This smoothie tastes so decadently sweet that it’s almost too good to be true; the frothy smoothie tastes like dessert! Speaking of which, a half-portion of this drink would be a good option for an after-dinner dessert.

2 bananas
2 tbsp organic almond or peanut butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 organic fig or medjool date, sliced (Slicing allows the fig/date to blend better)
2 tbsp hemp or chia seeds
1 tsp flaxseed meal
1/3 cup of water
Milk of your choice, add for your desired consistency

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. If the smoothie is too thick, add more milk or water as needed. Chill and enjoy!

Snacks

Kale Chips

photo-7-2

Kale chips are a revelation. Honestly, when I make a batch, I have to resist eating it all in one sitting. Many think that kale, and kale chips, will taste like grass but trust me – there is no grassiness. Just make sure to wash the kale really well, otherwise you might have some creatures of the grass in your chips!

This is a basic three-ingredient recipe but you can customize the seasonings. Here, I use garlic powder and cayenne pepper for a peppery kick. You can also get really fancy and grind the kale chips into a “kale seasoning” for a popcorn topping. Check out this recipe to try it out.

1 bunch of kale, washed
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 tsp garlic powder (optional)
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

  • Preheat the oven to 300F. Take the washed kale, dry well and remove large bite-size pieces from the stem. In a bowl, combine the kale with oil, but add the oil a bit at a time. Don’t overdo it with the oil otherwise your kale chips will be extremely greasy and unpleasant-tasting. Add the seasonings and use your hands to toss all the ingredients and “massage” the marinade into the kale.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment or foil paper and arrange the kale in a single layer (use two baking sheets if necessary).
  • Bake for about 20 minutes, or until crisp (keep an eye on the oven). Place the baking sheet on a cooling rack and cool the chips.

The chips can keep for a day or two (if they last that long), in an airtight container left out on the counter. Try to use a container that matches the serving size – the less “air”in the container, the better your chips will keep from getting stale.

 

Apple, Beet, Carrot and Chickpea Slaw
Adapted from JoyousHealth.ca

slaw

This refreshing slaw is great as a snack with crackers or toast, or added to a spinach salad for a light lunch. I find the longer the slaw marinates in the dressing, the better it tastes.

Slaw
1 green apple, shredded
2 beets, peeled and shredded
1 carrot, peeled and shredded
1 can of chickpeas, well-rinsed
1/4 cup of slivered almonds
2 tbsp hemp seeds

Dressing
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 clementines or tangerines, juiced (toss the segments into the slaw once juiced)
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
Black pepper, to taste

 

  • Combine all the slaw ingredients in a bowl. Note that the beets will colour all the ingredients and turn everything pink.
  • Place a fine-meshed sieve over a bowl. One handful at a time, squeeze the slaw mixture in the sieve to remove some of the liquid. (Make sure to reserve the liquid, as this juice is great to drink on its own or to add to a smoothie for an added nutritional boost.)
  • In another bowl, combine all the dressing ingredients except the olive oil. Slowly whisk in the olive oil into the rest of the dressing and combine well.
  • Toss together the slaw and dressing. Serve right away or let slaw marinate to enhance and fuse the flavours.

Makes 4 servings.

 

the Menu is Jugni Style’s lifestyle column written by Naveen Atwal, bringing you details on what to eat and how to make it. Plus tips on entertaining like a pro – or at least pretending you are!