Mexican Turkey Burgers

​As summer is upon us, it’s BBQ season. Unless, of course, you live in the UK, where we wouldn’t know summer if it hit us in the face at the moment.

This was the scene that greeted me after spin class on Saturday morning, ready for a nice day out with one of my friends….hard to believe this is a July morning.
However, I have refused to let that dampen my spirits when it comes to my food choices. Family BBQ’s should be a really fun occasion where you shouldn’t have to worry about what you’re eating. But inevitably the shop brought burgers can be full of various preservatives and also gluten. I prefer to make my own burgers and they are simple and easy to do!
I have previously make these sun-dried tomato burgers which are amazing, but I’ve had a really craving for something with a slight Mexican twist so I came up with these burgers.
Ingredients

800g Lean Turkey Mince

3 Shallots

1 Egg

½ Tbsp. Chilli Powder

½ Tbsp. Paprika

1 Tbsp. Harissa Paste 

Bit of coconut oil to oil baking trays (if not grilling)

Side note: I prefer to use a burger press to help with portion sizing and shaping but you can do it by hand if you prefer.

Method

1. Finely chop the shallots. Oil 2 baking trays with some coconut oil ready for later (if you’re not grilling them)

2. In a large bowl, mix together the turkey mince, egg and shallots. I normally do this by hand and it allows you really feel how it’s all coming together.

3. Add in all the spices and harissa paste and mix until the spices are evenly distributed throughout turkey mince. 

4. Mould into burgers, I find it normally makes around 7 good sized ones. And place onto a baking tray, cover and place in the fridge for an hour.

5. Once the hour has passed if you want to cook them in the oven, pre heat to 150°c, then place the burgers in the oven and cook for roughly 25 minutes, turning them around half way through.

6. These can also be cooked on the grill just ensure you’ve made the burgers tightly packed else they may fall apart on the grill.

7. Then enjoy!

Nutritional Information

(For the burger, not including the salad)

Calories: 181

Protein: 23g

Carbohydrates: 2.2g 

Of which is sugars: 0.7g

Fibre: 0.8g

Fat: 8.8g 

Of which is saturated:2.4g

Protein Packed Stuffed Breakfast Peppers

I don’t think there’a any meal I put quite as much time into thinking about as breakfast. I know people always say that it’s the most important meal of the day, but honestly I think it’s just my favourite. There’s such a variety of what you could have, hot or cold, sweet or savoury. I think for anyone who saw the picture of my birthday breakfast the other week at one of my favourite restaurants (Annie’s burger shack in Nottingham, they also offer EVERY option on their menu as veggie or vegan, as well as catering for gluten free) you would have seen that my ideal breakfast is a mix of sweet, savoury, hot and cold. Who says you can’t have it all?
Back to reality in terms of what do I want for breakfast this week, I spent a few hours looking on pinterest and flicking through my various cookbooks and I thought that I would have a go at some stuffed peppers. What I found really appealing about this is there’s no need to follow a strict recipe, you can just fill it with what you like and tweak as you go to your personal preference. However, if you do want some inspiration, why not try my protein packed stuffed peppers. Perfect for a quick and easy breakfast, whether it’s before a run or ready to drop in your bag to take to work.

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Ingredients
6 Peppers, chopped in half
6 Eggs
12 Tablespoons of Water
100g Feta Cheese (I like the one that some with sundried tomatoes)
150g Tinned Sweetcorn
155g Lean Smoked Bacon Lardons
2 Shallots, chopped

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Method
1. Preheat the oven to 150°c
2. Take the chopped shallots and bacon lardons and gently fry off in a pan until just cooked and the shallots have softened then leave to one side.
3. Take the  halved peppers and scrape out the insides until you have a nice cup to hold your filling as so. This does take a little while if you’re prepping enough for the week, but be patient!

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4. In a large mix bowl, beat all the eggs together. Add all the water and beat until full incorporated. Add in all the feta (draining any oil beforehand if you buy the feta in oil and sundried tomatoes like I do) and sweetcorn and mix again.
5. Lay all your peppers onto a greased oven tray to prevent the bottoms sticking/burning to the pan, try to balance them so when you pour in the mixture it won’t spill, this may take a bit of fiddling about.
6. Add the shallot and lardon mixture to your eggs, if you do it earlier the heat may start to cook the eggs slightly, so try to leave it as late as possible.
7. Fill your peppers with the mixtures, ensuring that they don’t spill over and place in the oven.
8. Cook for roughly 20 minutes, depending on the size of the peppers. Keep a check and once the filling starts to look firm take them out and leave them to cool.
9. If you’ve made them a head of time, just give them a couple of minutes in the microwave until warmed through (timings will vary depending on the size of each pepper) then enjoy.

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Nutritional Information
Serves 6 (2 halves per serving)
Calories: 228
Protein: 17.3g
Carbohydrates: 11.7g
Of which is sugars: 8.0g
Fibre: 3.5g
Fat: 11.8g
Of which is saturated: 3.9g

Sausage, Onion and Potato Omelette

After having porridge nearly every morning for breakfast at work for a couple of months, I’ve decided I need a change. I still love porridge, especially how quick and versatile it is, but I’ve been thinking I could do with having something a bit different and maybe with a bit more protein in it to help set up my day. Flicking through a cookbook I was given nearly a year ago for some inspiration, I came across a recipe for a sausage and potato omelette that I thought would be a good one to try. It’s similar to the frittata I made not that long ago so I knew I was on the right tracks.

It doesn’t take too long to make and is super easy to batch bake on a Sunday ready for the week ahead. Just make sure you have a good frying pan with a heat resistant handle so it can be placed under the grill.

Ingredients

2 Potatoes
1 Onion
1 Pack of Sausages (I went for gluten free turkey sausages)
10 Cherry Tomatoes (which I forgot about to include in the picture)
6 Eggs
1 Tbsp Mixed Herbs
12 Tbsp Water
1 Tbsp Oil
Pinch of Black Pepper
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Method

  1. Peel the potatoes and chop into rough big cubes and boil until soft. Drain and leave to cool at one side.
  2. Grill the sausages until cooked through and set to one side to cool.
  3. Add the 6 eggs and the water together in a large bowl and whisk together until thoroughly mixed.
  4. Once the potatoes and sausages have cooled cut into smaller bite size pieces.
  5. Heat a frying pan with half the oil, once hot add the potatoes and cook until they are starting to go crispy then add the onions and continue to cook until browned without burning.
  6. Remove the potatoes and onion and add the remaining oil to the pan, ensure all sides are coated then add the potatoes, onions, sausages and tomatoes and stir so there’s an even mix of ingredients across the pan.
  7. Pre heat the grill onto a high heat.
  8. Add the egg and water mixture to the pan and leave to cook on the hob for 3-5 minutes until the bottom of the omelette is good.
  9. Remove from the hob and place under the grill to cook for roughly 10 minutes until the top of the omelette

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Nutritional Information

Serves 5
Calories: 362
Protein: 26.1g
Carbohydrates: 40.7g
Of which is sugars: 4.3g
Fibre: 5.3g
Fat: 10.9g
Of which is saturated:3.2g

Breakfast Frittata

With spring just around the corner, I’ve been looking to change up from normal porridge breakfasts for something a little bit different. When I’m busy thinking and researching about what would be good, it needs to fill 3 criteria. 1. Tasty 2. Filling 3. (Potentially most important) able to be batch cooked and/or easy to eat at work.
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As my training for my 10K is really starting to ramp up, I’ve been particularly hungry. I’ve started running 7 miles to ensure I have the stamina to do the 6.2 miles and my aim is to be able to sprint the last 500 metres or so. It’s going well, I’m feeling really positive about it, my most recent run was 6 minutes quicker than the previous one! I still find it odd how much I’m enjoying the training, again, if this had been even 6 months ago, I never would have considered running 10K let alone with still 7 weeks to go I would be regularly running 7 miles.

But anyway, I digress, breakfast time! I spent my Sunday’s locked away in the kitchen batch cooking my breakfast, lunch, snacks and my boyfriend’s breakfast and lunch for the week, so where possible I like these to be as fuss free and use hardly any pots and pans. This is where I stumbled across a recipe for a frittata done in the slow cooker, see here, but I have tweaked it slightly.

Ingredients

6 Eggs

100g feta

75g Baby Chestnut Mushrooms

2 Medium Courgettes

100g Cherry Tomatoes

12 tbsp Water

1 tsp Paprika

2 tsp Mixed Italian Herbs
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Method

  1. Grease the slow cooker and start to pre-heat on high
  2. Roughly chop the mushrooms and gently fry until browned. Then put to one side.
  3. Grate all the courgette, once this is done, drain all the water, I found putting it in a sieve helped to be able to really squeeze as much as possible out, then pat dry on some kitchen roll until no more water comes out.
  4. Beat the eggs in a large bowl/container, once all mixed add the water and mix again.
  5. Add all the other ingredients into the mixture and then tip into the slow cooker.
  6. Cook on high for 2-3 hours.
  7. Cut up until portions then remove from the slow cooker (I would never have been able to remove it whole but if you can then good on you!)

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Nutritional Information

Serves 4

Calories: 193
Protein: 13.3g
Carbohydrates: 2.2g
Of which is sugars: 1.3g
Fibre:0.8g
Fat: 14.3g
Of which is saturated: 5.0g

Turkey breast with steamed carrotts and broccoli

As quite a few people have asked me at work what I eat for dinner on a normal weeknight, I thought I would share with you all as well.  Most of the recipes I have share previously I make at the weekend when I have a bit more free time, but during the week I probably spend between 20-30 minutes max. cooking. This recipe only takes 15-20 minutes and has 5 ingredients so it’s perfect for when you’ve got in after a long day at work and are hungry after a good workout! I’ll admit that I do have rather large portions, so it could be you want to reduce the amount of broccoli you have as part of this meal as it is rather filling. I normally have this after I’ve had a rather strenous workout or been on a run.

Ingredients
170g Turkey Breast
240g Broccoli
200g Carrotts
60g Tinned Sweetcorn (drained)
1 Maggi Cooking Paper (paprika is my favourite but they have a wide variety so you can pick accordingly)

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Method
1. Chop the broccoli down into small florets and the carrotts into preferred sizing, I normally do some circles and some into sticks.
2. In a steamer add the carrotts and cook with the lid on for around 5 minutes then add the broccoli and replace the lid.
3. Heat a grill (I prefer a george foreman) and place the turkey onto the cooking paper, once the grill is warm, place the Turkey on there and leave to cook for 10 minutes checking half way through.
4. Once the broccoli and carrotts are starting to soften without going soggy and the turkey is white the whole way through, serve with sweetcorn on the side.

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Nutritional Information
Serves 1 LARGE portion
Calories: 398
Protein: 51g
Carbohydrates: 27g
Of which is sugars: 18g
Fibre: 7g
Fat: 8g
Of which is saturated: 2g

Chicken, Leek and Mushroom Meatballs

Last week was a rather disappointing week. It had started off so well! But by Wednesday, I had gone off track. It all started with a late shift at work, I intended to leave to head to the gym, all the meals for the day were planned and until 4.30pm, it was going well. Realising I wasn’t going to make it out of work on time, I had a protein flapjack (not part of my pre-planned meals for the day), this then lead to another one (each at over 200 calories). When I finally got home, it was another protein flapjack from my graze box, again unplanned, then venison burgers and salad for tea as planned. This then led to a generally over calorie day on Thursday which spilled over into Friday. I’ll admit these over calorie days (which I have a feeling exceeded over 2000 calories each day) are full of of nuts, dark chocolate, fruit, dates and nut butter. So there are worse things I could be eating, but it’s an awful lot of fat and sugar. I then made the mistake of having some wraps and a pastry and I’ll be honest, my body was not happy. My stomach cramps came back on Friday night with a vengeance, not so subtly reminding me that whilst something’s may be tasty, they are simply not worth it.

Not ideal. But these things happen, no point dwelling, time to move on.

So, in order to ensure this week I don’t have a repeat I have been hitting the cookbooks again to find some more tasty meals. And yet again Amelia Freer has come to my rescue. I was looking for something that wouldn’t need too long to heat up at work, fairly versatile as I would want it with either salad, quinoa or rice and easy to batch bake.

I stumbled across these Chicken, Leek and Mushroom Meatballs. (aside: her full recipe for this also includes an almond sauce with quinoa and leeks but I just made the meatballs themselves.) I’ll admit mine aren’t the prettiest ones you’ll see, but trust me, they are tasty, high in protein and low in saturated fat! They don’t even need that many ingredients, now that’s my kind of dish

 

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Ingredients

1 ½ Leeks (the picture has 3 leeks, as if you’re doing her full recipe you need 3 but I didn’t correctly read the recipe beforehand *Duh*)

1 Egg Yolk

2 Chicken Breasts

250g Button Mushrooms

½ Tablespoon Chopped Fresh Chives

Olive Oil – for frying

Pepper to taste

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Method

  1. Chop the chicken breast into strips, then add to a food processer and blitz into a mince.
  2. Chop the leeks into fine strips and the mushrooms down so they are small.
  3. Add the oil to the frying pan and heat. Once hot, add the leeks and mushrooms and cook on a high/medium heat for roughly 10 minutes. Stirring regularly until all the moisture has gone. Leave to one side to cool.
  4. While the mixture is cooling, pre-heat the oven to 150⁰c.
  5. Once the mixture is cool, add the chicken, egg yolk, chives and leek + mushroom mixture into a mixing bowl. Mix it all together until well combined. Add a bit of pepper then mix again.
  6. Line a baking tray with tin foil. Using a tablespoon, scoop some of the mixture out and roll into a ball, place it on the lined tray. And repeat until all the mixture is used up. It should make 16 meatballs.
  7. Cook in the oven for 10-15 minutes, until it’s cooked through but we want to ensure it stays juicy to try to avoid overcooking it.
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  8. Then serve, I chose to do mine with some frozen vegetables as it was quick to whip up, but you can go with anything really!

 

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Nutritional Information

Makes 16 Meatballs and serving size of 4 per serving

147 Calories

20.6g Protein

7.1g Carbohydrates

1.3g Fiber

2.4g Sugar

3.0g Fat ( 0.4g are Saturated Fats)

Sun-Dried Tomato and Harissa Paste Turkey Burgers

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I would have posted last week as keeping to my New Year’s Resolution I have been trying a new recipe every week. However the soup I made for my work lunches was not to my liking so I’ve not shared this one.

But alas, this week, courtesy of a Christmas present from my best friend (a new healthy eating cookbook), I have found an amazing one. This is from Amelia Freer’s book ‘Cook, Nourish, Glow’. I made double the portion from the book as I wanted enough to last me for lunches over the weekend and whilst I’m at work. I found these really easy to make these as a big patch knowing that I have nothing to worry about in the evening when I’m tired after work as everything is already prepped. Not only is it a ridiculously easy recipe to make (once you’ve found all the ingredients, it took me about 10 minutes to locate the harissa paste in Asda), it’s absolutely delicious. Even my boyfriend, who is not a turkey fan, was impressed and said ‘I’m actually quite jealous of you now’. That’s a win if I ever heard one.

The recipe below is for 8 portions. I did this as 8 large burgers, on reflection you could do it as 16 smaller burgers and have 2 for each portion. I will probably do this when I make them again but I just went for 8 large ones. The recipe in the book is for 4 burgers, so the below is easy to divide if you only want to make 4. I served these with a few different things, on Sunday it was with lettuce, tomatoes and a few veggies but today it was with quinoa and veggies. So I have pictured it with a lettuce and tomato bun, but you could put it with anything.

Ingredients

1Kg Turkey Mince

12 Sun-Dried Tomatoes (finely chopped)

4 Shallots (finely chopped)

2 Egg Yolks

4 Tablespoons Fresh Herbs – I used Parsley ( finely chopped)

2 Garlic Cloves (Crushed)

2 Teaspoons Harissa Paste

2 Gem lettuces

Handful of Cherry Tomatoes

Pinch of Pepper to season

Coconut Oil to grease baking trays 

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Method

  1. Add the turkey, sun-dried tomatoes, shallots, egg yolks, garlic and herbs into a large mixing bowl. Thoroughly mix together. Then add the harissa paste and pepper to season and mix again.
  2. Take out a plate or baking tray (one that you won’t need later). Separate the mixture into 8 portions and make into patties. Put them onto the plate, cover with cling film and leave in the fridge to cool for at least half an hour.20160109_105843
  3. Once the half an hour has passed preheat the oven to Gas Mark 6. Melt the coconut oil onto your baking trays and then place the patties onto them. Cook in the oven for 20-25 minutes, ensuring you turn them over half way through.
  4. Serve on a lettuce bun with tomatoes and a side of vegetables.

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Nutritional Information (for the burgers only, not the sides)

Serves 8

208 Calories

25.1g Protein

4.4g Carbohydrates

0.9 Fibre

2.3g Sugar

10g Fat ( 0.5g are Saturated Fats)