Whilst I’m not a vegan myself, since the turn of the year i’ve been making a conscious effort to eat a diet with more plant based foods and less meat. I’m not the biggest fan of eating raw vegetables as crudités so I set out to find ways of preparing veggies to have as snacks or sides that taste delicious and don’t contain tonnes of sugar! The following are just a few simple ideas which can all be prepared in under half an hour, making them perfect for a dinner party if you’re entertaining health conscious gifts but they also make amazing meal prep ideas if you are rushing around and need something speedy.
Turmeric Roasted Cauliflower
This is SO good – I do like cauliflower but I find that eating a lot of it can get quite samey and it does need some help with flavours to keep it interesting. Turmeric is absolutely full of amazing health benefits so I try and add it into meals whenever I can and it absolutely transforms cauliflower into something so delicious as a side.
Simply chop your cauliflower into florets, drizzle with olive oil, a little pepper and a good coating of turmeric. Turn the florets so they are all coated in the spices and roast at 200 degrees for 30 minutes, turning half way through.
Crunchy Roasted Chickpeas
Chickpeas really are amazing – they make great sweet dishes such a blondies, cookie dough or even cookies as well as humous and can be eaten whole in a range of savoury dishes. When roasted, the outside goes nice and crunchy like nuts so these make a great snack to have out which will hopefully avoid you reaching for the crisps or chocolate!
Drain your tin of chickpeas and try and dry the chickpeas with kitchen roll, this helps the outside become crispy. Tip onto a baking tray and top with 2 tsp paprika and 1 tsp cinnamon with a small drizzle of olive oil. Mix the chickpeas around so they are covered and roast at 200 degrees for 30 minutes, turning occasionally.
A lot of people seem to turn their nose up at kale but this converted my Mum AND 13 year old brother which is really saying something. These are ready in 5 minutes and you can very easily swap in or out flavourings to change the outcome of the crisps. I like a simple topping of chilli flakes to give a spicy twist and could honestly demolish and huge batch of these all at once!
Tip your kale onto a baking tray so that there is one flat layer, try not to have layers of kale as this stops them getting crisp! Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle on salt, pepper and chilli flakes then bake at 200 degrees for 5 minutes until some of the kale is just browning. Keep an eye on it as this will burn very quickly if you’re not careful!
What are your favourite healthy snacks and sides?