Mixed bean chilli
To serve 4, bring 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes and 800ml water to the boil in a large saucepan with the lid on. Stir through 2 level tbsp Cajun spice mix (see Cook’s note below) and 2 x 400g cans drained and rinsed mixed beans. Cover and simmer over a medium heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 2 deseeded and roughly chopped red peppers, and simmer the chilli, uncovered, for a further 10 minutes, or until the peppers are tender and the mixture has thickened. Reduce the heat to low and gently stir through 250g spinach until wilted (in batches, if necessary). Season to taste and serve.
When using shop-bought spice mixes or blends, choose brands without Synned ingredients such as sugar, flour and oil. Otherwise, count ½ Syn per level tsp or 1½ Syns per level tbsp.
Borlotti minestrone soup
Free .Vegan ❆
To serve 4, put 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes with garlic and herbs, and 2 vegan vegetable stock cubes in a large, lidded saucepan along with 800ml water. Cover, place over a medium-high heat and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer gently for 8-10 minutes until it begins to thicken. Rinse and drain 2 x 400g cans borlotti beans, and roughly chop 400g courgettes. Add to the tomatoes and stock, and cook for a further 8-10 minutes, or until the courgettes are completely cooked through. Meanwhile, cook 200g dried short tubular pasta shapes, such as macaroni or chifferi, for 2 minutes less than the pack instructions, then drain well. Add to the soup, stir and bring back to a simmer. Season to taste, and divide between 4 bowls to serve.
This Speed Food is a great budget buy right now, and its delicate onion taste is the star ingredient in a hearty leek and potato soup, or use it to add extra flavour to a Food Optimising mash-topped pie. Leeks can also be used as a flavour base for stews, casseroles, risottos – you name it! Fry in low-calorie cooking spray with chopped carrots and celery, then add your other ingredients, such as lean meat, fish or veg, for a quick, tasty and healthy dinner.
Sweet and juicy clementines have easy-peel skins, making them ideal for an on-the-go snack. You can also use them to give savoury dishes a winter upgrade. Toss segments with plain cooked beetroot and rocket for a simple side dish. Or, for a jewelled salad, add with grated carrot and finely chopped spring onions to cooled, cooked dried rice and stir through pomegranate seeds, fat-free vinaigrette and a pinch of ground cinnamon.
Love our diet-cola gammon recipe in the Celebrate! feature? Here are more ways to use ground nutmeg:
BLEND cooked butternut squash with a pinch of nutmeg and hot veg stock to make a tasty soup.
WHISK ¼ tsp into eggs before scrambling – add a handful of baby spinach when they’re nearly cooked and stir until wilted.
BAKE sweet potato wedges, lightly sprayed with low-calorie cooking spray and sprinkled with a little nutmeg.
Love our onion rings in the American road trip? Here are a few more ways to use garlic granules:
ADD to mushrooms fried in low-calorie cooking spray – ¼ tsp is equivalent to 1 garlic clove.
STIR 1 tsp into home-made tomato pasta sauce for an easy flavour upgrade.
SCATTER sparingly over Slimming World chips for a garlicky hit.
Fill up on Free Food®
All our meals are based on Slimming World Free Food – nutritious, everyday foods that fill you up for fewer calories, meaning they’re great for weight loss! Free Food includes lean meat, poultry, fish, eggs, pasta, rice, potatoes, pulses, fruit, veg and more. And you can eat these foods freely, making them perfect for satisfying the biggest of appetites. Some Free Foods have the extra bonus of being Speed Food – fruit and veg that are super-low in calories and keep you slimming beautifully. For the best results, always reach for Speed Food first in between meals and include at least a third of a plate of Speed Food at every meal, where it makes sense.
Add in Healthy Extras®
To help provide a good balance of nutrients, enjoy two measured portions of milk or cheese each day – your Healthy Extra ‘a’ choices. Options include 350ml skimmed milk or 250ml semi-skimmed milk; 40g reduced-fat or 30g full-fat hard cheese; 50g mozzarella (cow’s milk); 45g feta or 35g Danish blue, which can be eaten as part of a meal or snack. Also have one portion of wholemeal bread or breakfast cereal each day – your Healthy Extra ‘b’ choice. To keep things simple we’ve built your Healthy Extra ‘b’ choice into the menu plan each day.
Choose your Syns®
Foods and drinks that pose a risk to your weight loss – those high in fat or sugar, as well as alcohol – can be enjoyed as carefully counted Syns. We recommend you plan between 5 and 15 Syns into your day (see the bottom of the next page for some ideas).
Make simple swaps
To help protect your weight loss, choose the leanest meats and trim off any visible fat – cut the white bits off bacon and remove skin from poultry. Dry-fry or cook with low-calorie cooking spray rather than fat or oil, switch sugar for sweetener, and swap cream and crème fraîche for fat-free natural yogurt or plain quark.
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