Teatime Bites

Sometimes you want to eat healthy snacks that feel comforting. The recipes below create snacks that are for just those moments:

Sweet Potato Muffins {makes 12}

  • Ingredients: olive oil. 600g sweet potato or 1/2 butternut squash, 4 spring onions, 1-2 red chillies, 6 large eggs, 3 tablespoons of cottage cheese, 250g wholemeal self-rising flour, 50g parmesan cheese, 1 tbsp sunflower seeds, 1tbsp poppy seeds
  • Method: Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cases. lightly wipe each with oiled kitchen paper. Peel the sweet potatoes or squash and coarsely grate into a large bowl. Trim the spring onions, then finely slice with the chilli and add to the bowl. Reserve half the chilli to one side. Crack the eggs, add cottage cheese and flour, then finely grate in most of the parmesan and season with salt and pepper. Mix until nicely combined. Evenly divide the muffing mixture between the cases. Sprinkle over sunflower and poppy seeds, then dot over the reserved slices of chilli. Use the remaining parmesan to give a light dusting of cheese over each one. Bake at the bottom of the oven for 45-50 minutes or until golden and set.

Coconut and Date Bars (makes 12)

  • Ingredients: 1 cup of pitted dates, 2 cups walnuts or Brazil nuts, 2 cups desiccated coconut, 3/4 cup dried cranberries, 3 tbsp water
  • Method: First toast the walnuts slightly in an oven heated to 170°C. Once cool add to a food processor along with the dates, cranberries and coconut. Blitz until mixture has crumbly texture. Now add water to the processor, a tablespoon at a time. Keep mixing until the mixture comes together. Line a 7 x 9 inch tin with cling film. Press the mixture into the tin and press down firmly. Pop into the fridge for a couple of hours, then cut into bars. You can then sprinkle with more coconut or melted good quality dark chocolate as a treat!

Quick Cookies (makes 8)

  • Ingredients: 2 bananas, 100g oats, 100g sultanas or raisins.
  • Method: Preheat oven to 180°C. Blend the bananas into a sticky pulp. Add the oats and raisins and blend (be careful not to over-blend into a mush). Split into 8 balls and pat down into cookie shapes. Place on a baking paper-lined baking tray. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes TURNING the cookies halfway through. Place on a wire rack to cool.

Salmon and Spring Onion Muffins (makes 6)

  • Ingredients: 1 tsp ghee or coconut oil, 200g fresh salmon fillets (skin on), 1/2 tsp dried dill, 3 spring onions (sliced), 5 eggs, 25g grated cheddar cheese, pinch of salt and black pepper
  • Method: Grease 6 compartments of muffin tin. Melt the ghee/coconut oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add salmon fillets to the pan, skin side down. Sprinkle on the dried dill and cook for 5 minutes. Turn the salmon fillets over and cook for a further 4-5 minutes (until the salmon is thoroughly cooked). Remove salmon from pan and set aside. Add the spring onions to the pan and sauté for 3 minutes until soft. Remove pan from heat. Whisk the egg and season with salt and pepper. Break the salmon fillets into flaks and add to the eggs, along with the spring onions and cheese. Stir well. Divide the mixture between the muffin compartments. Bake for 35-40 minutes until golden.

Cocoa Energy Balls (makes 24)

  • Ingredients: 70g pumpkin seeds, 20g puffed brown rice, 50g whole almonds, 80g dates, 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground turmeric, 1 heaped tsp high quality cocoa powder, 1 tsp vanilla extract, 1/2 tbsp honey, an orange, pinch of salt.
  • Method: Blitz 40g of the pumpkin seeds into a fine dust, set aside. Put remaining pumpkin seed, puffed rice, almonds and dates into a food processor and blitz. Add the turmeric, cinnamon, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt. Blitz again, then add the vanilla extract, honey and the juice of half an orange.  Blitz again, stopping to scrape down the sides. Do this until the mixture has come together. Divide the mixture into 24 pieces and then roll into balls. Place the balls into the pumpkin seed dust and roll them around until they are fully coated.

Some shop-bought no-added-sugar treats are really delicious! Here are my top three:

  • Primal Pantry bars
  • Nakd Posh Bits
  • Trek bars


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