15 best superfood recipes
Give your body a boost with some of our favourite superfoods, from antioxidant-rich dark chocolate and matcha, to live yogurt and wholesome oats
Discover some of our favourite ways to include nutritious superfoods in our everyday menu. After, check out our Health editor's best health trends or, if you'd like to see our top fruit and veg picks, check out our best healthy fruit and best healthy veg collections.
olive health editor and nutritionist, Tracey Raye, says, "Let's be clear, there's no such thing as a 'superfood'. Rather, when we talk about superfoods, really what we're referring to are highly nutritious foods that we love adding to our diets to support our energy, immunity and overall wellbeing. Nutrients support the body in functioning the way it's supposed to, which allows us to feel better and get on with the things that really matter to us. Try some of our favourite everyday superfood recipes, from porridge to sourdough and matcha crepes."
Our 15 favourite everyday superfoods
Rich in vitamin E and polyphenols, walnuts have one of the highest antioxidant levels of any nut. As well as this, they’re a fantastic source of healthy plant fats and fibre, making them the perfect addition to a quick meal or satisfying snack.
This cavolo nero, pink grapefruit, avocado and walnut salad, with its contrasting textures and flavours, is striking to look at, and packed full of the nutrients our bodies crave. Plus it's vegetarian, low calorie and gluten free, too.
Whether whole, ground or blended into a butter, almonds are super nutrient dense, with a high amount of healthy monounsaturated fats, fibre and protein. Almonds are so easy to add to your diet, simply add ground almonds to baking, flaked almonds to porridge and salads or almond butter to toast and smoothies.
Make these fruity almond muffins for an energising breakfast. Banana and yogurt keep them moist, while the butter, ground almonds and oats make them filling. No added sugar means you’re getting the day off to a good start too.
Matcha is rich in catechins, a class of natural antioxidants which help to reduce cellular damage in the body which can contribute to disease and ageing. With its caffeine and l-theanine content, matcha can support several aspects of brain function without the same level of jitters one might experience with coffee.
Add a hit of antioxidants to your next cake creation with this beautiful green tea inspired stunner using layers of crêpes and custard cream and dust with some matcha powder to finish
Richer in protein than many similar grains, oats offer a range of nutrients such as manganese, iron, zinc and folate. Oats are also quite unique in that they offer a type of fibre called beta-glucan, which has been found to reduce cholesterol and blood sugar levels, as well as promote healthy gut bacteria.
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This berry and nut butter porridge is packed with nuts, fruit and oats – perfect for a nourishing post-workout breakfast or snack.
Wild salmon is a great source of protein, selenium and B vitamins, however one of its most prized nutritional contributions are the long-chain omega-3 fatty acids it contains, shown to reduce inflammation, support heart health and decrease risk factors for several diseases.
Make this healthy salmon pasta by Nadine Brown if you’re looking for a comforting, creamy seafood dinner that’s also high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids.
Eggs are a very nutritious food, offering a perfect balance of protein, fat and an abundance of nutrients from vitamin A, D and K, to B12 and selenium. Try to choose organic eggs that have been fed an omega-3 enriched diet for extra nutritional benefit.
It doesn’t get quicker than this healthy egg fried rice when you need something filling, fast. We've ramped it up with the addition of sweet, juicy crab.
7. Chia seeds
Chia seeds are packed with fibre, protein, magnesium and plant-based omega-3 fats known as Alpha-linolenic acid or ALA. Great for everyone, chia seeds are particularly beneficial on a vegan diet for this reason.
Try this kiwi, kale and chia parfait smoothie is a healthy way to pack fruit, veg and nuts into your diet. This showstopping smoothie can double up for dessert or breakfast.
Garlic is low in calories, while offering a rich array of nutrients such as vitamin C, B6, selenium and manganese. High doses of garlic have been found beneficial in supporting the immune system and hearth health.
Try this pak choi recipe for one of the best ways to serve baby pak choi – lightly boiled and drizzled with soy sauce and homemade garlic oil.
Lentils are an inexpensive source of plant-based protein. They also offer plenty of fibre, iron, potassium and folate which support heart health and blood sugar balance, while keeping you feeling full and satisfied for longer.
A vibrant, low-calorie and vegan dinner idea, made with sweet potatoes, red split lentils, coconut milk and plenty of spices, this sweet potato and lentil curry is a winner with everyone.
10. Live yogurt
Turn your chickpeas into these lightly-spiced fritters and serve with a zesty cucumber salad for a quick, low-calorie lunch. The yogurt adds gut healthy live cultures and a creamy sauce, balancing the light spices.
Sourdough generally contains higher levels of naturally occurring nutrients than other breads thanks to the process of fermentation it undergoes in production. This process lowers levels of phytate which allows the body to more easily digest and absorb the nutrients it contains.
Use sourdough that’s a day or two old to make the extra-crunchy croutons for this vibrant salad. Packed with crab, crunchy asparagus, carrot, fennel and sugar snap peas, it’s a bright and nutritious dish that’s easy to make.
Butter is rich in butyric acid, a short chain fatty acid that has been found to have many gut supportive benefits. Add butter to your diet easily with this corn on the cob with an umami miso and zingy lime butter.
13. Olive oil
Pesto is pasta's best friend and a simply way to include olive oil in your meals. Combine with fresh basil, pine nuts, olive oil and parmesan.
14. Dark chocolate
Dark chocolate (70-80% cocoa solids) is rich in antioxidants, as well as offering fibre, iron, magnesium, zinc and potassium. Add to sweet or savoury dishes for an added nutrient boost throughout the week.
Dark chocolate and coffee are the keys to this deeply savoury, spicy mole sauce – perfect with marinated roast chicken, rice and lime wedges
Flax seeds are part of a nutrient group called lignans which offer powerful antioxidant and phytoestrogenic properties, as well as plant-based omega-3, fibre and protein – making them a great addition for those wishing to balance blood sugar, stay fuller for longer and support hormonal balance.
Nutty with rye kernels, flax, sunflower and sesame seeds, this Nordic loaf is fantastic served with salads or spread with salted butter.
Tracey Raye is the health editor for olive and BBC Good Food. Tracey, MSc, is a registered nutritionist, holding a master’s degree in personalised nutrition. She is passionate about harnessing the power of all things health and well-being in a way that enhances, rather than limits, our lives. She covers our nourishing recipes and collections, oversees our health strategy and stays adrift of the latest health and lifestyle trends in order to bring you the tools and inspiration you need to find what health means for you.