Now summer is officially here, why not make the most of the immune-supporting effects of spending time in nature? Heading out for a picnic is also safe way to connect with loved ones.
To give you some inspiration, here are some healthy, delicious and portable picnic ideas packed with nutrition as well as flavour.
Grab your picnic blanket and enjoy!
Sweet potatoes are brimming with beta carotene, vitamin C and manganese, while garlic supports a healthy immune system.
Put the cooked sweet potatoes into a food processor with the garlic, lemon juice and pepper. Blend together adding the milk a little at a time until smooth.
Vibrant turmeric not only looks good, but it‘s also a potent antioxidant, helping prevent cellular damage and ageing. Tahini is a great source of calcium, while flax oil is rich in healthy omega 3 fats. This dip can be whizzed up in minutes.
Perfect paired with dips, these contain protein-rich flours and because quinoa is a seed, they contain no grains or gluten. Quinoa also provides calcium, magnesium and manganese, while chickpeas are packed with fibre.
Add the flours, garlic, herbs and oil to a food processor. Add coconut water a little at a time until the mixture forms a smooth dough. Roll out thinly directly onto a greased baking tray and slice into squares. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 180C, gas mark 4.
Dairy-free, colourful and tasty, this coleslaw packs a nutritional punch from the antioxidant-rich veggies combined with protein from the nuts.
Soak the cashews in water overnight or for at least 4 hours, then drain. Put them in a blender with the oils, tahini and lemon, and blend until smooth and creamy. Stir in the grated vegetables.
Kale’s reputation as a superfood comes from its sheer density of nutrients, while the ruby red colour of beetroot hints at its rich content of protective antioxidants. Meanwhile, walnuts provide protein and essential omega 3 fats.
For the dressing:
Chop the beetroot into cubes and steam until tender but still firm. When cool, add the chopped kale and walnuts and combine.
Put all ingredients for the dressing into a bowl and whisk until blended. Keep the dressing in the fridge.
So convenient, these energy bites are also really moreish. As they’re packed with healthy ingredients such as chia and pumpkin seeds, you can go back for more!
Blend cashews, pumpkin and chia seeds in a food processor until they’re chopped but haven’t become floury. Add ginger and cinnamon, then the dates and blend until you have a sticky mixture. Roll into balls using your hands. Roll each ball in cacao powder or desiccated coconut. Put in the fridge to set.
Chia seeds contain essential Omega 3 and 6 oils and they’re also a great source of fibre to feed your gut bacteria.
To make each pudding you’ll need:
Stir together the chia seeds, cinnamon and milk, let stand for 5 minutes, then stir again. Add to a blender with a handful of berries and half a teaspoon of honey and blend until smooth and thick. Pop each pudding into a mason jar and put into the fridge for at least a couple of hours or ideally overnight. Top with more berries.
Nutritious food like these picnic ideas can be not only delicious and full of flavour but also convenient. Contact me if you’d like to explore further the connection between nutrition and health.
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