Healthy Pasta Salad Lunch

My family are just slightly obsessed with pasta. Hold on, seriously obsessed. It’s definitely one of our favourite foods! But as great as pasta is, it’s not fabulous for you if it’s drenched in carbonara sauce, or with lashings of cheese and red meat! This pasta salad is so simple to make and perfect for taking with you for your lunch, hot or cold. Enjoy!

THE MAGIC INGREDIENTS: serves 1

approx. 75g pasta of your choice (try to get pasta over spaghetti as the ingredients will stick better to the pasta shape)

2-3 tsp red tomato/pepper pesto

12 cherry/plum tomatoes, chopped

Handful of basil

Salt and Pepper

THE MAGIC TECHNIQUE: (pfff…..)

Cook pasta, according to packet instructions until al dente (meaning firm to the bite in Italian) then stir in the pesto and cook for literally a few seconds. You can soften the tomatoes by frying them beforehand if you wish but if you’re not then just chuck them in and give it a good stir for about 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper. Shread in the basil and BOOM. Heaven in a lunch box.

Now I know this isn’t completely healthy. There’s a bit of sugar in the pesto and the carbs aren’t wholemeal but ya know what? Life’s too short to be living on celery.

What’s your favourite lunch to make? Do you like pasta?

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Healthy Eating As A Teen

I need to have a little rant. There aren’t many things I rant about, but this topic, I really felt I needed to.

We are told everyday what our life should be like. Whether it be something silly like how our throw cushions should be arranged to something serious like how slim we should be. This generation has a hard time trying to keep up with it all.

Sometimes it’s useful ‘advice’ – like try keeping a water bottle with you at all times, or do an Internet detox. That’s good. I like that advice. But sometimes I read stuff and it makes me SCREAM inside. Like you should be a max of 100 pounds to get a boyfriend. And not eating breakfast/lunch/dinner will make you ‘skinny’ and ‘beautiful’. No, just no.

It’s advice like this that affects teenagers A LOT. Teens are struggling anyway with working out what their future will hold. But whack some more pictures of Photoshopped beach blonde babe models and it doesn’t help, honey, it does not. That’s when eating disorders come into the equation.

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And it’s because so many teens are getting eating disorders, the minute another teen says “I’ll have the salad” parents, neighbours, friends, family start yelling “Nuh uh, what’s up with you? You don’t need to diet!”. Which is so annoying. Because sometimes all that teen is trying to do it nourish their body, grow stronger physically and mentally and you know what? Try some new food!

I am a pretty healthy girl. I love kale. And hot lemon water. And two ingredient banana pancakes (they taste like Heaven, try them out). And most people know that. But yet whenever I say, “Can I have some more salad/do you mind if we don’t have pizza?” I still FEEL the stares. Now I know these people are just caring and worried but because of this awful ‘advice’ trend going around at the moment people need to be concerned if ya girl just wants a smoothie!

This really annoys me. Because they’re are some very smart teens out there who know what they’re doing. They are HELPING THEMSELVES. And it’s freakin’ awesome. I love it. I love how some of my friends now say they love fruit. They know what Vitamin A is. They know that wholemeal is better.

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I am very appreciative of what I have, and how lucky I am. But sometimes I wish that there were more of us ‘middle group’ people. And by this I mean we’re not at either end of the spectrum. We’re not starving ourselves, neither are we eating Burger King for dinner errrrrry day.

I feel like I’ve waffled on a bit today. But there were all these thoughts just rattling around in my brain and writing it out seemed like the best option!

I’d love to know YOUR opinion on healthy eating as a teen. Tweet me, email me, or comment!

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Healthier Gingerbread Hot Chocolate Recipe

Well hello lovely ones. How are we? Christmassy? Good. I’ve been experimenting in the kitchen with cocoa powder and syrup…aye it’s a hard life for me. I am proud to say this is my own little baby of a recipe, come up in my own little mind! The ingredients to this super easy yet super delicious recipe are very simple, and I’ve given you a few alternatives in case you don’t have the ingredients and can’t be bothered to pop to Tesco in your pyjamas.  Enjoy, my little cocoa truffles (I’m practically Nicole Scherzinger in the Muller adverts)

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YOU WILL NEED:

1 heaped teaspoon of unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon of sweetener (I use Truvia)

1/2-3/4 teaspoon gingerbread syrup

mug of milk

INSTEAD OF…

unsweetened cocoa powder – sweetened but leave out sweetener

gingerbread syrup – pinch of ground ginger and tiny pinch of cinnamon (but you won’t get the same smooth texture as syrup)

*I know syrup isn’t completely healthy, so that’s why it’s called a ‘healthier’ version!*

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METHOD:

1. Add heaped teaspoon of cocoa powder to empty mug

2. Add a dash of cold milk and stir to create a paste

3. Add milk to fill mug up and stir gently

4. Whack in microwave until hot (mine took 2 minutes)

5. Once hot, add in half teaspoon sweetener and  half/ three quarters teaspoon  gingerbread syrup (or spices)

6. STIR STIR STIR

7. Add whipped cream if you like, and enjoy!

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^^sneaky mince pie….. ;)^^

I know what you’re saying: “but Lottie, syrup has sugar in it!”. I know. As I mentioned earlier, this is a healthier hot choc, not no-dairy-vegan-sugar-free version. Uh-huh.

Are you going to try this out? What’s your favourite flavour of hot chocolate? Let me know!

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥

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Healthy Trail Mix With Dark Chocolate, Almonds And Cranberries

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Yoodles, lovely internet people. Now, it’s getting to the time of year where we’re starting to get into Autumn (or Fall, for you beautiful overseas peeps). I don’t know about you, but when the rain starts coming down more regularly than usual (that’s a bit of a record for Britain, to be honest!) I automatically fall (get it? haha I’m such a comedienne) into the chocolate-Digestives-whole-chocolate-bar-to-myself-anything-high-in-sugar routine when I need a snack. I don’t get it! When its sunny (which, to be fair, isn’t very often in England) I’m like ‘yassssss, let me just pull together a super smoothie or an all natural fruit ice lolly!’ but in the colder months it’s ‘blah. Just give me a cookie’. So, to try and banish these unhealthy habits, I’ve created one of my FAVOURITE trail mix recipe. So, without further ado, here it is!

*just a little note. Please feel free to bring in or take out whatever you like, this recipe is very flexible. Also, there are no super duper specific measurements, just eye the amounts!

Almonds

Pecans

Cranberries

Raisins/Sultanas

Dark Chocolate (preferably with a lot of coco content, but I know that can get expensive!)

Small baking tray lined with foil/greaseproof paper

Small tub suitable for  microwaving

2 teaspoons or 1 teaspoon and a toothpick

Tupperware

1. Melt a third of a 100g bar of chocolate in a microwave proof tub. I did it in 20 second shots and stirred every so often.

2. Dip in your almonds or pecans (or both!). Be creative! Dip in just half, dunk it whole, drchocolatepot_lotsoflovelottieblogizzle over lightly with a spoon…whatever you fancy! TIP: If you have any left over chocolate, drop spots of it onto the foil for homemade chocolate chips!

3. Put in the freezer for 15 minutes or so until the chocolate is solid.

4. Gently peal off the almonds and chips and throw in a tupperware box with the pecans, cranberries, raisins and a little bit of salt.

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5. And BAM! Super easy snacking! This may be taking it a liiiiittle too far but this would be super cute decor for your kitchen this Autumn in glass gars! Maybe tied off with some twine and a pinecone? Ooooo this is tooo exciting! Also this is a great way to get a sweet and salty treat at school. Just throw in your bag for a yummy snack for lunch!

Are you going to try this out? What are your favourite healthy snacks?

Lots of Love,

Lottie ♥