learning to live a happy, healthy life

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Friday, 29 December 2017

Fit, Happy, Healthy - My New Instagram Series


A new year is a new start. A clean slate and a chance to change your life for the better! I've decided to start up a whole new series on my Instagram to help you kickstart the year in the best way, #FitHappyHealthy starts on 1st January and will be a series of home workout videos every Monday and Friday morning! These workout videos will be effective workouts you can do from the comfort of your home. Each Monday will be an equipment free cardio workout to kickstart your week in a positive way and every Friday there'll be strength/toning workout - some will be equipment free and some will require weights, if you're lucky enough to have your own dumbbells or kettle bells that's great but if not you could always use filled water bottles, books, or anything you have lying around.


My journey to a happy, healthy body has been one I've done all by myself. I've lost 3 stone, I've come fit, strong and confident and so much happier within myself. I've never had any help from a PT, I've not set foot in a gym, haven't dieted and never deprived myself. I strong believe becoming your healthiest and fittest can be done easily and cheaply, all at home! So, I wanted to share with you how I did it and hopefully help/inspire you to live a happier, healthier life in 2018!

Who's with me?

(workout table below)

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Thursday, 21 December 2017

Christmas 2017 Recipe Round Up

I really made an effort to come up with some delicious festive recipes this year and have enjoyed sharing them all in the run up to Christmas, to hopefully inspire you to get in the kitchen and given you some ideas for food you can eat on the big day!


I've decided to put together this handy recipe roundup for my 2017 Christmas recipes so you can find them all in one place. There's mince pies to herby roast potatoes and maple roasted sprouts to festive rocky road. All of them just as delicious as each other and all of them suitable for those following a gluten, dairy and egg free diet. My favourite of the bunch is my Red Lentil, Mushroom & Sage Nut roast - which everyone in my house is totally obsessed with OR the Festive Rocky Road complete with homemade gingerbread pieces - a total dream. Which one will you try this year?

(Click the recipe title to be taken straight to the recipe page)

Red Lentil, Mushroom & Sage Nut Roast

The best veggie alternative for Christmas Day, and so simple to make too!

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Monday, 18 December 2017

Red Lentil, Mushroom & Sage Nut Roast (New & Improved!)


Back in 2015 when my blog was very new I posted a Lentil, Mushroom and Sage Nut Roast recipe which to this day is one of my most popular recipes on the blog...and with good reason! This recipe goes perfectly every time I make it, it's straight forward and hassle free AND not one person has ever disliked the deliciousness of this festive loaf. It's the perfect veggie Sunday roast option, it's a real winner for Christmas Day and it's even incredible enjoyed cold the next day.

This year I decided to revamp the recipe a little, and with a couple of small changes I've made this recipe even more spectacular!




This lentil, mushroom and sage nut roast with cashew, carrots, leeks and plenty of herbs is the most perfect texture that'll satisfy any veggie and any meat-eater. The lentils and cashews give it substance, heartiness and really fill you up, the leeks, carrots and mushrooms add a wealth of goodness, colour, texture and taste and the herbs compliment all the ingredients so well.

One of my favourite things about this recipe is how hassle free it is too, as well as being relatively cheap to make. A lot of nut roast recipes I've come across require 3 or more different nut varieties to be used which not only means extra things to remember when you go shopping but also extra expense as nuts aren't cheap, whereas this recipe calls for cashews alone! The other ingredients used are also inexpensive and can all be found in your local supermarket. The steps to this recipe are simple, straight-forward and you can't really get anything wrong. As I said above, this recipe has always gone perfectly every time I've followed it myself and I've never had any bad feedback from it!

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Friday, 15 December 2017

Easy Mince Pies (Vegan & Gluten Free)


Is it really Christmas if you haven't eaten a mince pie? I think not!

I love a delicious mince pie at this time of the year (in fact, I'm always tempted to eat them all year round!) - I love the delicately sweet taste, the festive spices, the juicy filling with the crumbly pasty. Since embarking on my lifestyle changing and cutting gluten and dairy out from my diet I've had to buy the 'free-from' mince pies from the supermarket, but they're often full of so many artificial ingredients and added sugars I don't like to eat too many of them. Of course it's perfectly fine to indulge, especially at Christmas time, but for those of you who'd like a healthier alternative or who'd like to get their back on this is the recipe for you.

This mince pie recipe is both gluten free and vegan, as well as being free from added refined sugars. It's also one of the easier mince pie recipes out there and you should be able to find all the ingredients in your local supermarket - hurrah!



I've been put off backing my own mincemeat before as I thought it would take forever, would require weird and hard to source ingredients and really I just couldn't be bothered with faffing about. But this year I took it upon myself to create a delicious yet simple and relatively quick mincemeat recipe that's full of natural goodness and tastes simply divine. The mince pie filling is made from a mixture of dried cranberries, sultanas and raisins with some apple juice and orange juice & zest for added sweetness and festive flavours. There's also vanilla extract, cinnamon and mixed spice which when added to the mix will create a heavenly smell around your kitchen - you just wait!

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Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Crispy Rosemary & Thyme Roast Potatoes


Crispy on the outside, fluffy on the inside. Simple to prepare and cook. Completely delicious. These are the most perfect roast potatoes and will make the best occupant to your classic Sunday Roast or your Christmas lunch!



Roast potatoes may be a very standard British thing but this recipe takes the humble roasted spud to the next level. Adding fresh rosemary and fresh thyme to the crispy potatoes brings a gorgeous flavour that just can't be beaten!

These potatoes are super easy to make too and can be thrown together with very little time or effort needed. They are however a real showstopper and a true crowdpleaser, so give them a go with your Sunday roast or prepare them this Christmas for a new welcome addition to your lunch.
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Monday, 11 December 2017

Clementine, Apple & Pecan Bircher Muesli


I'm coming at you today with another Christmas recipe...and today's is a breakfast! This is a deliciously festive Clementine, Apple & Pecan Bircher Muesli that'll make an incredible Christmas Day breakfast or a festive food-prep breakfast recipe to last you the whole week.


 Bircher muesli is a breakfast option of dreams, especially for those with super busy lives. You make the bircher by mixing together a combination of oats, yogurt (I used coconut), different fruits, nuts, seeds and milk (I used almond) then simply leaving it in the fridge overnight to enjoy the next morning as a ready-made breakfast or something to easily eat on the go. Bircher muesli will last all week in the fridge too, so making a big batch of it is a great idea!

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Friday, 8 December 2017

Festive Rocky Road


Rocky road is one of my all time favourite sweet treats. I love the combination of different fillings you can get, the gooey chocolate and the sweet flavourings. I made a healthy rocky road recipe which I shared on my blog quite a long time ago now but this year I decided to create a festive rocky road recipe that'll be perfect for a Christmas treat, to give as a gift or to share out at a party.


This rocky road has a fudgey consistency that's pure heaven and the fillings really couldn't be more Christmassy! In there we've got some juicy dried cranberries, chopped nuts of your choice (I like almonds or hazelnuts), bee pollen - totally optional but tastes yum and looks a gorgeous colour, cinnamon spice AND the best part - gingerbread pieces!

Everything about this recipe screams Christmas and I guarantee you'll love it. My batch got gobbled up within a couple of days and I'm already being asked to make more!

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Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Maple & Garlic Roasted Brussels Sprouts


If you say you don't like brussels sprouts then you simply haven't cooked them in the right way! When boiled or simply steamed brussels sprouts have a tendency to be bland, boring and go all squishy...that's not what we want. Instead, if we roast them with a mixture of delicious ingredients they come out of the oven like little green balls of deliciousness with so much vibrancy and taste.

These maple & garlic roasted brussels sprouts will convert any brussel sprout loather and be the greatest accompaniment to a roast dinner and of course your Christmas feast.



Cooking your brussels sprouts this way makes the biggest difference to how this green veg turns out, but it requires very little time, effort or ingredients. Lightly steaming the brussels first then roasting them in the oven means they go perfectly crispy on the outside (not at all soggy or squishy!) yet don't burn or get overdone which can happen if you solely roast them.

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Saturday, 2 December 2017

Apple Galette (GF & Vegan)


Ever since I came across beautiful pastry galette's I've wanted to try a gluten free, vegan version of my own. The other day when I had some spare time I got myself in the kitchen to test out a free-from galette recipe, and you can see the outcome below!

I'm so impressed with how the recipe turned out. The pastry was a delicious crumbly yet buttery texture and the classic apple filling was a dream! You'd never know this dessert was gluten, dairy, egg and refined sugar free.



The pastry itself is made from a mixture of oat flour, brown rice flour, ground almonds and tapioca starch. I always find using a mixture of different gluten free flours tends to result in the best pastry texture and the tapioca starch is a must-have for that too! I used vegan butter in the pastry too but you could also use coconut oil. Then I added flax 'eggs' to help bind everything together, as well as some cinnamon to give the pastry a real warmth.
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