If, like me, you’re trying to eat healthier and lose some weight then cooking your meals from scratch is one of the best ways to do it. Healthy food doesn’t have to be difficult to make or taste bland. There are so many healthy cookbooks available with thousands of delicious recipes to inspire and motivate us in the kitchen and I personally love reaching for a good cookbook.
When meal planning, I have several go-to meals that I can cook easily and quickly. However, I often like to switch it up and add a new healthy recipe into the mix so that I don’t get bored. Here are the 10 cookbooks that I keep on my bookshelf for when I need some healthy food recipe inspiration.
1. The Art of Eating Well by Hemsley + Hemsley
Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley are sisters who run a food delivery service and joined Vogue as food bloggers, promoting healthy food. What I really like about their book is that they will introduce you to foods that you may not have tried before (purple sprouted broccoli or chicory anyone?), but there aren’t many ingredients that you couldn’t find in a supermarket. I’d describe their recipes as a healthy take on comfort foods like sausage stew, chicken soup and burritos.
What to make: Sausage and Cider Stew
2. Deliciously Ella, by Ella Woodward
Deliciously Ella started as a food blog when Ella Woodward changed her diet to heal herself from a rare illness called Postural Tachycardia Syndrome, or POTS. Ella went from being a self-confessed sugar addict to cutting out meat, dairy, sugar, gluten, anything processed and all chemicals. This book is perfect for vegans, but also ideal meat-eaters wanting to increase their vegetable intake. A lot of the recipes make great bases and side dishes for meat and fish.
What to make: Courgette Noodles with Avocado Pesto
3. Get The Glow, by Madeleine Shaw
Friends with Millie Mackintosh, Madeleine Shaw’s book includes a 6-week program to introduce you to healthy food and get you glowing from within. Madeleine suggests ways to improve your lifestyle, from yoga and mindful eating, as well as addressing sugar, fat, eating out, bloating and more. Madeleine’s recipes are really delicious and not too difficult to make. I recommend choosing a few recipes to try first as if you don’t already have certain ingredients your first shopping bill will be quite expensive.
What to make: Chocolate Hazelnut Crepes
4. The Eat-Clean Diet Recharged, by Tosca Reno
This was one of the first books I read on clean eating and it opened up my eyes to choosing real, whole foods first. After reading this I switched my rice, pasta and bread from white to wholegrain varieties and my white potatoes to sweet potatoes. The Eat-Clean Diet book explains the principles of eating clean in a really clear, easy to understand way. I credit a lot to this book as it was my first real introduction to improving my eating choices instead of going on another diet.
5. I Quit Sugar, by Sarah Wilson
Sarah’s book actually inspired me to quit sugar and although I only did it for a month (her plan is 8 weeks) it really opened my eyes to just how much food has sugar in it and how much my body had come to depend on it. Sarah recommends replacing the sugar with protein and fat which really fills you up – hello avocado and scrambled eggs on toast! Some of her recipes are a bit weird (courgette cheesecake anyone?!) but there are some real gems in this book.
What to make: Almond Butter Bark
6. Honestly Healthy, by Natasha Corrett
Natasha Corrett takes eating healthy food one step further by promoting the alkaline way of eating. Foods are either acidic of alkalising when digested, which can affect the body’s natural pH level causing issues like indigestion. All of the recipes are vegetarian as meat is very acid-forming and every recipe is rated and labelled on how alkaline they are, from ‘Alkaline’, to ‘Really Alkaline’ to ‘Really Really Alkaline’. This is so that you can pick and choose recipes to counterbalance acid-forming foods.
What to make: Chocolate Superfood Ganache
7. The Medicinal Chef: Healthy Every Day, by Dale Pinnock
Dale Pinnock promotes the benefits good food can have on our health and each recipe in his book is labelled to show the benefits of the star ingredient, whether it’s good for your skin, immune system, heart and circulation or more. Dale also goes on to explain the benefits of certain vitamins and minerals and which foods we can find them in. The recipes in this book all look appetising, not too complicated and actually make sense as meals. There are only a handful of recipes I wouldn’t make from this book, and that is high praise coming from me.
What to make: One-pot Moroccan Vegetable Tagine
8. Clean and Lean Diet Cookbook, by James Duigan
The man behind the bodies of Elle Macpherson and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, James Duigan shares his Clean and Lean philosophy in this book. He explains the rules behind eating clean, offers a 14-day eating plan and gives a ‘Bad, Better, Best’ guide to meals. While some of the recipes are delicious, others are too small for me, ie: half a carrot, one baby fennel and one scallop with dressing for dinner. Say what?! Small dinners aside, the lunches and ‘Around the World’ recipes are definitely worth trying. I have to admit, this book is one of my least used, but I do enjoy the recipes I make from it.
What to make: Chorizo Frittata
9. Clean Gut, by Dr Alejandro Junger
I started to think something was up with my digestion when I started getting bloated after almost every meal. After a bit of Googling I found it could be linked to poor gut health, then I found Dr Alejandro Junger and his book, Clean Gut. He really explains how the gut is linked to so many functions and behaviours in the body and how poor gut health can be the cause of many things, such as asthma, migraines, eczema and more. If you’ve ever suspected something you eat doesn’t agree with you but you’re not sure what, I highly, highly recommend buying this book following his 3-week elimination plan. It’s just 3 weeks and by the end of it, you’ll know which foods you should avoid to prevent pain and discomfort.
What to make: Almond Crusted Chicken Nuggets
10. Whole Food Energy, by Elise Museles
Whole Food Energy is packed with 200 recipes for drinks, snacks and treats, which I love as it can often be difficult to think of healthy snacks or get stuck in a rut. Elise is a health coach who realised her flagging energy, irritable moods and difficulty focusing were down to her not balancing her blood sugars with healthy snacks. The recipes are labelled as ‘Energise’, ‘Sustain’ and ‘Replenish’ so that you can pick and choose for your needs. I really love that every recipe has nutritional info – perfect for calorie counters and macro trackers!
What to make: Fudgy Brownie Bars
These are the cookbooks I have on my bookshelf for a dose of healthy food inspiration whenever I feel I’m getting stuck in a rut. I’ve actually been able to meet Deliciously Ella, Madeleine Shaw, Sarah Wilson, Hemsley + Hemsley and James Duigan and well, if their skin is anything to go by then they definitely all know a thing or two about healthy food!
What are your favourite healthy food cookbooks? Have you bought any of their second books yet? What recipes would you recommend I try? Let me know in the comments down below.
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