Courtesy Sahara Rose
Bonnie Taylor Barry/Shutterstock
Find comfort in the fact that these delicious recipes are healthy: Nutritionists reveal the best ways to eat for your body and soul.
You can eat healthily and have it taste good
Foods that offer comfort often get a bad rap because they’re typically high in calories, fat, and carbs—plus they put you into a food coma. But it doesn’t have to be that way. From cauliflower parmigiana to stuffed sweet potatoes, there are plenty of ways to rethink comfort food utilizing the superfoods—nutrient powerhouses that pack large doses of antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamins, and minerals.
Healthy Cauliflower Parmigiana
Courtesy Jessica Sepel of JSHealth
“This dish was a result of a serious craving!” says food blogger Jessica Sepel of JSHealth. Traditional chicken parmigiana involves pan-frying the chicken, coating it with breadcrumbs, dousing it with lots of cheese, and serving it over a mound of pasta. Comforting? You bet. Healthy? Not at 1,000-plus calories! Sepel’s version is a great alternative, featuring one of fall’s best superfoods: cauliflower. Cauliflower is a member of the cruciferous family of vegetables, which research has found may fight cancer.
“Full of goodness and so easy to prepare, it’s such a warm and nourishing option for those rainy nights,” says Jessica, who suggests topping off the recipe with a touch of Parmesan cheese and some fresh basil.
1 head cauliflower
1 tbsp coconut oil
1/2 onion, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt to taste
2-4 tbsp of Napoletana/tomato-based sauce (good quality, no additives or sugar)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
A handful of chopped basil
Pulse the cauliflower head in a food processor until it reaches rice-like consistency, and then heat up a large saucepan and melt the coconut oil. When the oil has melted, add the onion. When the onion starts to brown, gradually add the cauliflower rice. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt over cooking cauliflower.
When the rice starts to cook (four to five minutes)—add in the sauce. Stir to combine and then turn off the pan. Sprinkle with Parmesan and chopped basil, and then spoon onto plates.
Black Bean Burgers
Sometimes you just want a big, juicy burger to bite into—even when you’re trying to eat less meat. Enter this black bean burger, brought to you by Katie Willcox, author of Healthy is the New Skinny. Black beans have fewer calories and less saturated fat than meat, while also being a great source of protein. Research has found that, along with their high fibre and protein content, black beans are a rich source of antioxidants. In fact, the dark skins of these beans are packed with bioflavonoids, which are potent plant-based nutrients.
Carrots also shine in this recipe. With a natural season of late summer and fall, this root vegetable is a good source of antioxidant agents. They are rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin B8, pantothenic acid, folate, potassium, iron, copper, and manganese.
1 tbsp olive oil
3 garlic cloves
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1/2 tsp chilli powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 cans black beans
1 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 cup quick oats
1 burger bun (or bread of your preference)
Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. Combine onions, garlic, salt, and pepper and cook until onions are translucent. Add carrots, cumin, coriander, chilli powder, and cayenne pepper until carrots are tender. Remove pan from heat.
In a bowl, mash the beans and then add the contents of the pan along with the soy sauce and quick oats. Mix and form four patties. Place in freezer for 30 minutes to set. Cook patties on a pan coated in cooking spray over medium heat, flipping halfway. Add to bun and serve.
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