When the cooler weather comes, we switch over to a winter wardrobe and get out our big warm coats, scarves and boots. But what about our winter menu? Summer salads become a thing of the past and high fat stodgy foods gradually become the norm.
Let’s take a look at the winter menu before this happens and switch the high fat, high calorie foods for my warming winter favourites below.
Add warm milk to cereals – The best cereal choice should contain at least 3g of fibre per serve, warm skim milk in the microwave for around 30 seconds then add to your cereal.
Porridge – This is a winter favourite in many households, make sure you use the ‘rolled’ oats as these are higher in fibre than ‘quick’ oats. If you want to make oats for one, just add 1/3 cup oats and 2/3 cup water to a microwave safe cereal bowl and microwave for 1-2 minutes (depending on your microwave power), add a bit of skim milk, half a banana and sprinkle with cinnamon for a deliciously warming breakfast.
Beans on toast – A small can of beans and a slice of multigrain toast will provide a good start to the day.
Cooked breakfast – Poach or use cooking spray to fry an egg. Add multi grain toast for more fibre. If you want bacon, use bacon short cuts. Add more than just protein by including sliced tomato, mushrooms and spinach.
Don’t be tempted to skip breakfast – If you’re short on time my Breakfast Shakes are the perfect start to the day.
Leftovers – Cook my delicious recipes, then freeze leftovers or take to work the next day
Soups – I have many soup recipes in my cookbooks and all are suitable to be frozen. Cook up a batch on the weekend and you will have lunch for the week sorted. If you don’t have a way to warm this at work, buy a wide-mouthed flask and warm it before leaving for work. Try my Minestrone – book 1 or Hearty Vegetable Soup – book 3
Fried Rice – This is another great lunch option that can be made ahead and frozen. See my recipe in book 3.
Toasted sandwiches, jaffles or wraps – If using cheese make sure it’s 30% reduced fat.
Stuffed spuds – Microwave for a quick lunch option. Use leftovers to fill the spud or add creamed corn or baked beans with grated 30% reduced fat tasty cheese and lean bacon or ham.
There are loads of delicious warming winter recipes in my cookbooks. The key is to pick recipes that suit your schedule. With the shorter daylight hours in winter it can seem like there’s never enough time to cook a healthy meal. The key is to be prepared. Write your menu plan for the week and keep in mind the time that you have available.
If you struggle for time, cook double serves when you can and freeze the extra serve for another week. A little bit of time spent planning on weekends will be your saviour too, find time to cook at least one meal and freeze for later in the week, you’ll be so glad you did!
Here’s some quick meals to add to your winter menu:
Chicken in a Hurry – book 1
Nachos – book 1 (pictured above)
Macaroni Beef – book 2
Mongolian Lamb – book 3
Penne Pasta with Creamy Bacon Sauce – book 4
Asian Lamb Potato Curry – book 5
Chicken and Vegetable Lasagne – book 6
Rendang Beef and Vegetable Curry – book 7
Summer snacks aren’t as appealing in the warmer months, who wants a cold piece of fruit when the weather is freezing outside. Many of my recipes are suitable to be frozen into individual serves, then when you’re ready to eat just microwave to warm them through.
Date Loaf – book 1
Wicked Chocolate Cake – book 2
Jam Crumble Slice – book 3
Mini Quiches – book 4
Apricot and Walnut loaf – book 5
Savoury Pikelets – book 6
Tomato and Bacon Muffins – book 7
Fruit toast makes a good snack. There are a few things to be aware of with this option – avoid the thick café style slices, spread with a thin scraping of Flora Light Margarine and check the calories per slice as this can vary quite a bit between brands.
For variety, try crumpets, English Muffins, Ryvitas, cup-a-soups, low fat dips and check out the baking section in my cookbooks.
One last tip
Another thing that people tend to do in winter is add more milky drinks into their day. Lattes are a food not a drink! If you are craving a hot chocolate that has the added benefit of fibre to fill you up, take a look at my Breakfast Shakes. They will curb the 3pm munchies on a cold winter’s day and they’re 99% fat free.
By making wise choices in winter you will reap the rewards when summer comes.
If you want a winter menu that’s already planned for you, check out my Winter Warmer eBook which includes at 14-day weight loss menu plan. This 45 page eBook includes all recipes to complete the plan and lots of tips and inspiration for a healthy, happy winter.