5 Healthy, Affordable & Easy Winter Meals to Cook Yourself

Looking for great comfort food to get you through winter? Try these five wholesome, simple meals – dietician approved!

It’s that time of year when you dig out all the things that help make winter bearable – beanies, hot water bottles and recipes for great comfort food! Amanda Weber, a registered dietician based in Cape Town, suggests these five healthy, simple meals to warm you up from the inside:

  1. Delicious pear, orange and date breakfast bowl

This warm and filling, quick and easy breakfast provides lots of fibre and natural sweetness to kickstart your day. Oats are not only cheaper than most cereals, they’re much healthier too!

Recipe: Cook the oats according to packet instructions and while they’re nice and hot, stir in chopped dried pear, apple or apricots, chopped dates and one segmented orange. Finally add honey and cinnamon to taste.

  • French toast with bacon and beans

This is a hearty meal that’s easy on any student budget and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

Recipe: Make French toast by dipping bread into a mixture of beaten egg and milk and then pan frying it in a small drizzle of heated oil. Put the toast on your plate, then fry the bacon and place it on top of the toast. Lastly heat the baked beans (in tomato sauce) in the same pan and pour on top.

  • Lentil and bean soup with garlic bread

This beautifully thick and nourishing soup is easy, quick and practical to make, as most ingredients are pantry staples. 

Recipe: Fry one chopped onion in a little butter and then add a tin of lentils and a tin of butter beans. Add a litre of chicken or vegetable stock, a tin of peeled, chopped tomatoes and simmer together for 30 mins. Leave the soup chunky or blend it smooth with a stick blender and flavour with salt and lemon pepper. Enjoy with garlic bread and mashed avocado.

  • Tuna and three cheese sandwiches

These sandwiches are protein rich, easy to make and much cheaper and healthier than your average pizza!

Recipe: Mix a tin of drained tuna with half a cup of steamed peas, half a cup of cream cheese, two handfuls of grated cheddar cheese, two tablespoons of plain yoghurt, plus a dollop of mustard if you’re a fan. Spread the tuna mix on thickly cut sourdough, whole wheat or ciabatta bread, add mozzarella on top and grill for 5 minutes till golden brown. Have this on its own, or with soup.

  • Stir fry spicy beef wraps

Struggling to eat enough vegetables to keep the winter bugs at bay? These delicious stir fry wraps are the ideal solution. Cut the price of wraps dramatically by making (and freezing) them at home – YouTube will show you how!

Recipe: Chop vegetables (and fruit) like carrots, cabbage, baby marrow, spring onion, mushrooms, peppers and pineapple. Next, cut lean beef, chicken or pork into strips – you don’t need very much meat. In a little avocado or grape seed oil, stir fry the meat first, remove it from the pan and then stir fry the veggie strips. Add the meat to the veggies and serve in wraps with sweet chilli sauce and roasted chickpeas or crushed peanuts.

Bon appétit – and don’t forget the joys of ending a meal with a delicious hot water infusion – think mint, ginger, lemon, honey and rosemary.

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