Beyond Five a Day

[donotprint] When I was younger I found it was a real conscious effort to ensure I ate my five a day…

I don’t think twice about it now! Every one of my meals and snacks incorporate fresh fruit and vegetables and rather than the recommended “5 a day” I eat nearer to 10 portions most days.


My morning smoothies tend to provide at least 3 portions of fruit; or veg when I opt for a green monster!

This morning I opted for a creamy apple pie cinnamon smoothie.

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It kicked started my fruit intake for today packing three portions in the one smoothie serving. Topped with golden raisin and pecans for the obligatory crunch and chew.

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My meals wouldn’t feel complete unless they were jam packed full of colourful fruits and vegetables, dried, fresh, frozen or even tinned. Far from eating fruits and vegetables because they’re good for me or I feel I have too, I usually base my meals around the vegetable or fruits I fancy tucking in to on any given day or over a particular week; depending how organised I’m feeling in terms of meal planning!

I attribute the fact that I’m almost never sick, and should I catch something I tend to get over it pretty quickly, to the copious amounts and variety of fruit and vegetables I continuously consume.

I’ll be honest, I find it hard to comprehend how people who are consciously making an effort to “up” their fruit and vegetable intake find it difficult.

My top tips for getting beyond your five a day

  1. Start your day with a fruit smoothie or vegetable juice
  2. Make your cereal or oats more interesting by adding in fresh, stewed or pureed fruit
  3. Pureed vegetables such as butternut squash, pumpkin, parsnip, tomatoes, celeriac…the list is endless…form a great pasta sauce base
  4. Add dried and fresh fruit to salads, pilaf’s, pizzas, and curries…
  5. Enjoy a fresh or frozen fruit salad topped with some honey and ice cream for dessert
  6. Bake a peach, plum, pear or apple topped with your favourite dried fruit, nuts and honey and enjoy as mid afternoon treat or delicious breakfast with a dollop of natural yoghurt or cottage cheese
  7. As an alternative to mashed potato try sweet potato, parsnip, celeriac, or cauliflower mashed within an inch of their lives or pureed with milk, cheese and herbs of your choice
  8. Eat fruit and vegetables that are in season, they’ll taste far better
  9. Freeze a banana and blend to a puree to make a fantastic healthy soft serve!
  10. Don’t forget, pulses count! One of your five a day can come from beans, peas or lentils with the added bonus of some extra protein

Any tips to share? [/donotprint]

Apple Cinnamon Pie Smoothie


Servings – 1

Preparation Time – 5 minutes


  • 3 medium apples, peeled, cored and diced +1 tsp water + 1/2 tsp cinnamon)
  • 85g (1/3 cup) plain soy yoghurt
  • 125ml (1/2 cup) soy milk
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp honey/maple syrup


  • 1 heaped tsp large golden raisins chopped
  • 1 heaped tsp roughly chopped pecans (approx. 3 pecans)


  1. Place apples with water and cinnamon in a bowl and heat in the microwave for 1 –11/2 minutes on high (alternatively place in a pot over a medium heat for 3-5 minutes until soft but still retaining their shape as opposed to being mushy)
  2. Allow apples to cool before blending with all other ingredients.
  3. Serve with toppings strewn on and as always stir threw for a bit of surprising texture throughout.

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