Superfoods have been in the spotlight for almost a decade now. And although it’s obviously a marketing term, you can’t deny that some foods are packed with more health-boosting nutrients than others.
The good news is, you don’t necessarily have to buy hard-to-pronounce ingredients (I’m lookin at you, quinoa) to nourish your body. Dark leafy greens, berries, fatty fish, oats and avocado are all superstars when it comes to the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants they contain.
But if you like experimenting in the kitchen, it can be fun to also try more exotic foods to support your health. I’ve shared before how you can eat more medicinal mushrooms and sea weeds, but what about trendy ingredients like turmeric, matcha and chia seeds?
Take a look at these 24 delicious recipe ideas to add more popular superfoods to your meals.
Turmeric is everywhere – and for good reason. Used for its medicinal properties throughout the ages, modern science confirms that turmeric can provide significant health benefits. Studies show that the active ingredient in turmeric, called curcumin, has impressive anti-inflammatory effects. That’s an important finding when you realize that chronic inflammation plays a key role in many chronic diseases. What’s more, curcumin also is a powerful antioxidant and supports muscle recovery.
So how can you add this spice from the ginger family to your meals?
Golden milk and curries are classic ways to get your dose of turmeric. But you can also fortify soup and rice dishes, brew tea or take a wellness shot. Turmeric pairs well with coconut, citrus fruits and the earthy tones of mushrooms, squash and root vegetables. For an optimal absorption of curcumin in your body, you should add black pepper to your turmeric dish.
Here are 5 turmeric recipes to get you started:
10-Minute Turmeric Golden Milk from Foolproof Living
Turmeric Fruit Salad from Feasting at Home
Turmeric Chicken Tray Bake from Kay Nutrition
Vegan Lentil Meatballs with Coconut Curry Sauce from Feasting at Home
Ginger Turmeric Mocktail from Eat Well 101
Matcha lattes have become the go-to drink in many coffee places. It’s no wonder this green drink is so popular: what’s not to love about a cozy latte that energizes you without the coffee buzz?
What’s more, matcha tea has several proven benefits for your health. The powdered green tea is high in antioxidants, that protect your cells from damage. Matcha also boosts your brain functions and supports good heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.
Matcha is traditionally used in teas, but you can easily add this green powder to smoothies and shakes. And have you ever considered adding matcha to the batter of muffins, cakes and protein bars? The complex flavor of matcha tea also matches well with chocolate and tropical fruits.
Have a look at these 5 healthy recipes to have more matcha in your meals:
Iced Matcha Latte with Toasted Coconut from Grateful Grazer
Vegan Matcha Cake with Vanilla Lemon Cream Frosting from Making Thyme for Health
Raspberry Matcha Bars (Gluten-free, Paleo + Vegan) from Bakerita
Matcha Salmon Poke Bowl with Grapefruit Dressing from Fifth Floor Kitchen
Matcha Pistachio Ice Lollies from Stacey Horler
3. Chia Seeds
They may be tiny, but chia seeds are chockfull of health-boosting nutrients. Packed with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and fibre, chia seeds help reduce your risk of heart disease and stabilize blood sugar levels. Chia seeds are also high in important bone nutrients, like calcium, magnesium and plant-based protein.
And the good news is, you can easily incorporate chia seeds in your diet. Sprinkle these tiny seeds on yoghurt and porridge, or make overnight oats and chia pudding and overnight oats. Because chia seeds absorb so much water, they can also also substitute eggs in vegan baking.
Or you can try one of the surprising ways below to eat more chia seeds!
Strawberry Chia Lemonade from Garden in the Kitchen
Easy Paleo Lemon Chia Seed Muffins from A Mind ‘Full’ Mom
Tomato Chia Jam from Healthy Midwestern Girl
Oven Baked Chicken Tenders with a Healthy Seed Crust from Cooks with Cocktails
Tiramisu Chia Seed Pudding from Vegan Richa
4. Raw Cacao
It’s what every chocolate lover ever wanted to hear: chocolate can be good for you! Unfortunately, this is not the case for every chocolate bar in the store. The health benefits of chocolate aren’t found in the sugar, butter and milk that largely make up white and milk chocolate – it’s the cacao that boost your health.
Cacao beans contain flavanols; plant chemicals that help keep your heart healthy. They’re also rich in magnesium, plant-based iron and antioxidants. Unlike standard cocoa, raw cacao hasn’t been roasted, to ensure that no nutrients are lost. That’s how it maintains its high nutritional profile, which helps improve your energy levels, mood and digestion.
Although its best consumed unheated in smoothies and energy bites, you can still include raw cacao in baked goods. And let’s not forget healthy takes on hot chocolate! Here are 4 delicious recipe ideas to get your mouth watering:
The Antioxidant Breakfast Smoothie from The Awesome Green
Raw Cacao Truffles from The Kitchen Alchemist
Cocoa-Spiced Bean and Lentil Soup from Edible San Francisco
Hazelnut Crunch Hot Chocolate with Raw Cacao from Swoon Food
5. Goji Berries
They may look like oversized raisons, but goji berries are another example that size says little about impact. Rooted in traditional Asian medicine, goji berries have been used for centuries to promote health and longevity.
Thank to their large amounts of antioxidants, vitamin A and C, goji berries can indeed support good vision, boost immunity and balance blood sugar levels.
The simplest way to eat goji berries is to sprinkle a handful over your porridge and parfaits. But did you know you can also use goji berries in teas and lemonades, or add them to superfood salads?
Glow-Ji Lemonade from Move Nourish Believe
Easy Goji Berry and Hemp Acai Bowls from Nutrition in the Kitchen
Goji Berry & Rose Chocolate Fudge Bark from Charley’s Health
Goji Berry, Mushroom and Sweet Potato Soup from Jagruti’s Cooking Odyssey
Rainbow Goji Berry Red Beet Salad from Suncore Foods
Which popular superfoods – exotic or everyday superstars – do you like to add to your meals?
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