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6 healthier ingredients to add to your winter meals

Healthier green minestrone

Discover wholesome ingredients and recipes to try this season. Try these six wholefoods as you cook this winter.

Natalie Figueira

“When cooler weather arrives, there’s nothing more comforting than a hot meal and a cosy spot on the couch. Often crave-worthy foods are on the more indulgent side, so we asked ourselves: how do we make our favourite comfort foods a little healthier?

These recipes are nutritionally approved and boast all the winter warmth we’ve come to know and love. Think steaming, fragrant soups; rich, hearty stews and pastas; and cheesy traybakes. We’ve even got a couple of tasty, healthier dessert options, too.”

- Natalie Figueira - Woolworths Dietitian and Nutritionist

Healthier spiced sweet potato and lentil soup



Legumes or beans (such as chickpeas, green beans, peas and lentils) are a source of fibre and a great source of plant-based protein. They contain vitamins and minerals, such as folate and iron, too. Half a cup of legumes counts as a serving of veg and one cup counts as a serving of protein. Using legumes as the protein source in your meal provides a range of nutrients and adds variety.

Plus, canned and frozen legumes are affordable, versatile, and easy to prepare and incorporate into meals. Keep a few cans in the pantry to add to your favourite winter meals.

Top tip: Look for no-added-salt varieties of canned legumes. Rinse all cans before use to reduce salt content.

Healthier legume comfort food recipes

Healthier spiced chicken with cauliflower hummus


Chicken breast

Chicken breast is a popular and affordable cut of chicken. Skinless chicken breast is a popular source of protein to support healthy muscles* and is also lower in fat. Chicken breast is an easy-to-cook, versatile hero in comforting meals for cooler months.

Healthier winter chicken breast recipes

Healthier apple and ricotta baked cheesecake


Greek-style natural yoghurt

Compared to regular yoghurt, Greek-style natural yoghurt is thicker and creamier because most of the whey and liquid has been strained. It also contains calcium to support bone health* and is a good source of protein. Use Greek-style natural yoghurt as a healthier swap for cream or sour cream, to add a tangy depth of flavour to creamy sauces or marinades, or to help crumb meat. Why not try adding a dollop of Greek-style natural yoghurt to serve with your favourite Mexican dishes?

Healthier Greek-style natural yoghurt comfort recipes

Healthier roasted sweet potato soup



No winter ingredients list is complete without a mention of potatoes, considered one of the ultimate comfort foods. Potatoes are a source of vitamin C, which can help support your immune system* – an important consideration during the colder months.

Add potatoes to stews; roast or grill them for dinner; or add them to hearty soups and curries. Potatoes are great to have on hand to add to your favourite winter meals. They’re best stored in a cool, dark place. Sweet potatoes can even be used in winter desserts, making the options pretty much endless.

Healthier potato comfort recipes

Healthier roasted spiced cauliflower with freekeh



In peak supply in the cooler months, cauliflower is packed with vitamin C and a great addition to bulk up meals. Its mild flavour makes it a great all-rounder and ideal to use in rissoles or nachos, riced and turned into a pizza base, or baked with spices to dial up dinnertime flavour. This versatile vegetable is perfectly suited to rotation all winter long.

Healthier cauliflower comfort recipes

Chilli con carne with eggs



Eggs are a nutritious and delicious complete source of protein (which means they contain all nine essential amino acids). A serving of two eggs also provides a variety of vitamins and minerals including naturally-occuring vitamin D, folate and iron, just to name a few. Including nutrient-dense eggs is an easy and cost-effective way to boost the nutritional value of your winter meals.

While eggs are commonly eaten for breakfast, in a quiche or atop a stir-fry, they’re great as the binding in healthier baked masterpieces, such as cakes or a tasty, savoury zucchini slice.

Healthier egg comfort food recipes

*When eaten as part of a healthy balanced diet

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