Monday, 28 March 2016

Healthy Spring Reading List Shoppertunity

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SoFabUK #CollectiveBias

When I was challenged to write a spring time reading list I immediately knew what I would be going for. Spring time is the perfect time to kick start the healthy eating regime. I find that making new years resolutions for diets a waste of time as we are all more likely to over indulge on comfort foods during the cold and miserable winter months. Whereas once spring time arrives along with the longer days and nicer weather we are all in a better frame of mind to stick to a healthier diet. That is why my spring reading list is all about healthy eating. Summer is not too far away and there is no better inspiration than dreaming of hot summers days and holidays!

Selecting which books was the hard part. I was challenged to buy one, maybe two books. As usual I simply could not decided. I went to my local Tesco Extra to look for some health inspiring books. We usually buy our books from there as they always have a great selection at a really competitive price. Plus the convenience of being able to pick up a book while doing the weekly shop is definitely a plus point!

As you can see there a lot of books to choose from. In the end I narrowed my choice down to three books. The books that I selected varied in price from just £3 to the most expensive being £8. I also decided to go for books which are not as well known as some of the other popular authors. I am going to tell you a bit about each of the books that I chose and also share with you the recipe for the breakfast pot below that I have made from one of the books.

I chose the following books...

These three books were all great buys and I have chosen books that do not have a huge price tag on them.

The book that is the best value for money has to be the Hamlyn All Colour Cookbook 200 Veggie Feasts.

This book is full of delicious vegetarian recipes that will please everyone from your die hard veggies to a family that enjoy a varied diet of both meat and vegetable based meals. This little book is part of a 24 piece set of books which would be a fantastic accompaniment to any kitchen cook book shelf. I know that I will be keeping an eye out for more of these books. Priced at just £3 you simply cannot go wrong! After the introduction to vegetarian food which contains information about different ingredients the book is packed with recipes. The recipes are divided between the following chapters...
  • Breakfast and brunch
  • Starters and snacks
  • Main meals
  • Soups and stews
  • Salads and sides
  • Breads and baking
  • Desserts
Each recipe is accompanied with mouth watering photographs that show you how your meal should look. For me, a good cook book needs good pictures. I like to see what I will be cooking. Food photographs certainly do tell you more than just the recipe. I chose this book because it shows you that vegetarian meals are certainly not boring. You can do so much more with vegetables and they can be so versatile. We should all definitely include more vegetarian meals to our weekly meal plan!

The next book that I chose was Coconut Oil Natures Perfect Ingredient.

I love coconut oil. It really is my favourite "superfood" ingredient that I always keep in my kitchen cupboard. What I have recently discovered is that we need good fats in our diet. They are a necessity to keep our bodies healthy. Coconut oil can help lower cholesterol and helps to improve your energy levels. In the past it was believed that coconut oil, which is a saturated fat, was not good for you. But recent studies have shown that coconut oil contains medium chain fatty acids which are good for the body. They are digested and sent straight to the liver which causes an increase in energy levels and converts into ketones. I will admit that it is the flavour that initially attracted me to coconut oil. But after reading up on it I was amazed by the health benefits. This book has given me so many new ideas on how to incorporate coconut oil into more of our meals. I already use coconut oil in savoury dishes as well as sweet ones but this book shows it can be used in many more dishes. Coconut Oil Natures Perfect Ingredient is not just a recipe book. It also gives you a run down of what coconut oil contains and why it is so good for you. After giving you the scientific facts Lucy Bee goes on to tell you how you can use coconut oil for beauty and well being. I love keeping a small tub of coconut oil in my bag, it is a great lip balm and tastes good too! One of my favourite quotes of the book has to be the following...

"Every time you eat or drink, you're either fighting disease or feeding it"

This quote did make me stop and think. It really is so important what we eat and drink, but I am a true believer in everything in moderation. This quote has certainly made me stop and think about what food is best to eat. If you have a mainly vegetable based diet with a bit of organic meat I really do not think that you can go wrong. Over the coming months I know that I will be making quite a few of these recipes. When I do, I will definitely let you know how I get on!

The third book that I chose was Quick and Easy Without the Calories.

For me, as soon as I saw the title of this book it had me! Who does not want to be able to cook quick and easy meals with less calories? Spending a lot of time preparing a meal can sometimes be difficult with the children running around and having a busy life. So meals which are quick and easy are always a must when I prepare my weekly meal plan. Now that winter and Easter is over the hubby and I are kick starting our healthy eating plan. We are going on holiday in the summer and I am aiming to feel confident in a swim suit and want to feel happy when we look back on the pictures from our time abroad. This book just screamed out to me to pick it up. The book not only contains recipes but also has a healthy eating plan within it. This book works on the 1, 2, 3 plan. You have three meals a day, meal one should be up to 300 calories, meal two should contain between 300 and 400 calories and finally meal three should contain between 400 and 500 calories then add an additional 300 calories through out the day. The book has been divided between the following chapters...
  • Breakfast and brunch
  • Chicken and turkey
  • Pork, lamb and beef
  • Fish and seafood
  • Meat free
  • Soups and snacks
  • Sweet things
Each recipe is colour coded. Meal one recipes are turquoise, meal two recipes are pink and meal three recipes are purple. Each recipe has the calories per serving as well as full nutritional details listed at the back. I am going to try this eating plan, not only because it sounds like a plan which could work but also because this book is full of so many recipes that I cannot wait to try! The recipe that I have chosen to feature today is from this book.

I have chosen the Crushed Berry Layered Yoghurt recipe.

This breakfast pot is so versatile, in the book they give you the basic recipe but there are so many different ingredients that you could add according to taste. These pots can be kept in the fridge for up to three days so they are great to make in bulk and keep in the fridge. If you are running late one day you could pop a pot in your bag and take out with you or if you did not want them as a breakfast they would make a deliciously sweet but good dessert!

This is what I did...

Crushed Berry Layer Yoghurt

Ingredients - Makes 5 pots

500g mixed berries (I used blueberries and raspberries)
1 - 2 tbsp caster sugar (I used 1tspn of stevia sweetener which is both natural and calorie free!)
500mls fat free natural yoghurt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract or paste (optional)


1 - Place the berries in a bowl and mash together using a fork and mix in the sugar or sweetener

2 - If using the vanilla paste mix it into the yoghurt

3 - Take a pot and start to layer the contents starting with a layer of yoghurt, followed by a layer of fruit. I also added a handful of porridge oats and a teaspoon of chia seeds after the first layer of fruit

4 - Finish by adding a second layer of yoghurt and a final layer of fruit

5 - I topped my pots with a teaspoon of mixed seed but you can finish with just the fruit layer if you wish

6 - Close the pot and keep in the fridge for up to three days

These little pots of goodness contain just 102 calories per serving and make a deliciously easy breakfast or a yummy, guilt free dessert!

This pot can also be easily adapted according to taste. If you do not like berries simply use any juicy fruit that you do like!

I hope that these three, full of healthy recipe, books have given you a taste of what books are about this spring. Forget new years resolutions that will be broken, make spring time a time to change. Make spring a time to focus on healthy eating and make a lifestyle change that really will make a difference!

Enjoy x

Tasty Tuesdays on


  1. What a lovely recipe to choose Kirsty, I love yogurt with fruit and seeds & so good for you too. Thanks for sharing x

  2. All these books sound fab - and what a great idea to start your healthy eating plan in spring - a much more sensible time than the depths of winter. My husband and I started out so well this year but it all went to pot in the run up to Easter - we will redouble our efforts just as soon as we've finished up the mountain of Easter chocolate!!! Your little yogurt pots look so lovely - I cannot believe they are only 102 calories - that is awesome! And so good for you too! Thanks for sharing :-) Eb x

  3. These would be fab to take into work for early starts - perfect breakfast and make a nice change from flapjacks.

  4. What an amazing round up and love that crushed berry yoghurt-v powerful words: "Every time you eat or drink, you're either fighting disease or feeding it"
    Thanks for linking up x

  5. I like the sound of the quick and easy cookbook, as I'm not much of a planner so this would help when I need to pull something together quico


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