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Love Your Gut Week Recipes

Upgrade your Gut Health with these recipes (originally posted for love your gut week)

Nutritionist and cook Dr Joan Ransley has created four delicious gut healthy recipes so you can re-set your gut health for the rest of the year and beyond.

Taking inspiration from top food trends and packed full of flavour, these recipes show that keeping your gut healthy ned not be bland or boring. From Middle Eastern inspired Courgette Shakshuka to low fat cheesecake alternative Frozen berry Yoghurt Cake, gluten free Socca Pizza and a Full English Vegan Fry Up, these recipes are both full of gut-friendly dietary fibre, prebiotics and polyphenols and in addition delicious. 

Why not show your gut the love it deserves and give these recipes a go? Be sure to visit for more information on good gut health and extra recipes too.

Full English Vegan Fry Up

This fabulous vegan fry up is tasty and filling and contains a welah of gut-friendly ingredients. Black beans are a great source of dietary fibre which helps to keep the gastrointestinal trect moving and also contain galaco-oligosaccharides, which act like a fertiliser in the gut and provide material for beneficial gut micro-organisms to feast on. Ginger is a soothing spice and gentle on the gut.

Prep and cooking time: 40 mins

Serves 4


200g mixed small peppers

3 tbsp olive oil for drizzling

Tomato and tamarind Ketchup

1 banana shallot, finely chopped

40g fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated

2 tbsp tamarind paste

400g tin chopped tomatoes

1 tsp of palm sugar

Avocado and black bean mash

1 large ripe avocado, mashed

200g black beans, crushed slightly

Squeeze of lemon

Half a clove garlic crushed

1 tsp cumin, ground

200g wild mushrooms, brushed clean and roughly chopped

200g spinach, washed and roughly chopped


1) Preheat the oven to 200 degrees/ Gas mark 6. Place the peppers on a roasting tray and drizzle over a little of the olive oil. Roast for 20 minutes or until the skins begin to blister and turn brown. Remove from the oven.

2) To make the ketchup. Drizzle a little more of the olive oil in a pan, add the chopped shallot and sweat until soft. Add the grated ginger and tamarind paste to the pan and cook gently for 2 minutes before adding the chopped tomatoes and palm suar. Simmer for 20 minutes until the sauce is thick. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

3) While the ketchup cooks mak he avocado mash. Simply mix the mashed avocado with the black beans, lemon, garlic and cumin to form a rough paste. 

4) Place the mushroom sin another pan wih a drizzle of olive oil, Cook over a moderate heat for 5 minutes or until the mushrooms are sodt. Move the mushrooms to one side of the pan, add the spinach and cook until it wilts. 

5) Serve the mushrooms, spinach, avocado and clack bean mash with the tomato and tamarind ketchup. This would be lovely served with fresh toast.

Note: Palm sugar adds caramel flavour as well as sweetness to a dish. It is great for balancing the acidity of dished containing tamarind, lemon or lime. Variation: This dish would be great topped with a poached egg for vegetarians and a rasher or two of bacon for meat eaters.

Courgette Shakshuka

This recipe is inspired by the Middle Eastern dish made from spicy peppers and onions topped with eggs. In this version courgettes are spiralised and stir fried with sunflower seeds and herbs. The sunflower seeds are a powerhouse of nutrients and together with the courgettes provide dietary fibre to feed the microorganisms in the gut. Most people in the UK do not eat enough dietary fibre but adding vegetables and seeds to everyday meals increases the fibre content of the diet and helps to keep the gut healthy.  

Prep and cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves 4


4 medium sized courgettes

2 tbsp olive oil

4 tbsp sunflower seeds

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

16 piccolo or cherry tomatoes, halved

Juice from half a lemon

4 free range eggs

Small bunch mint (parsley)


1) Cut each courgette into lengths that will fit the spiraliser. ‘Spiralise’ the courgettes to form lengths of curly courgette. Place the lengths of spiralised courgettes in a large frying pan that has a lid and drizzle with a little olive oil. Begin to stir fry the courgettes over a medium heat. When the courgettes begin to soften add the sunflower seeds, garlic and tomatoes. Cook for about 8 minutes moving the ingredients around the pan to ensure even cooking. Season well with salt and pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon

2) Make four little wells in the courgette mixture. Break the eggs into a cup, one at a time, and drop them carefully into the wells. Cover with a lid if you have one and cook for five minutes or until the whites are just set and the yolks are still runny. 

3) Serve sprinkled with a little chopped mint or parsley.

Cooks tip: You might find it hard to make enough space for 4 eggs in one pan. If so, divide the courgette mixture between two pans and cook two eggs in each. 

Variation: This dish would be lovely with small pieces of chorizo or bacon tossed through the courgette mixture to suit meat eaters. 

Socca Pizza with Prosciutto, broccoli and mozzarella balls

Socca is a gluten free Italian pancake dish made with chickpea flour. Chickpea flour contains plenty of dietary fibre and galacto-oligosaccharides that provide food for beneficial microorganisms in the gut to feed on. Broccoli contains polyphenols. Polyphenols are thought to stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria and inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria. This can help to keep the lining of the gut wall healthy.  Eating a diverse range of plant based foods promotes a varied range of beneficial gut bacteria which helps to keep the gut healthy.

Prep and cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves 4


For the socca pizza bases

150g chickpea (gram) flour

50g grana Padano cheese, finely grates

Half tsp salt

70ml olive oil

375ml cold water

For the topping

3 red onions, peeled and quartered

2 tbsp olive oil

Half tsp sugar

Half tsp salt

1 clove garlic crushed

200g tender stem brocoli 

80g prosciutto

16 cherry tomatoes, cut in half

125g mozzarella pearls

Small handful basil leaves


1) To make the bases. Put the chickpea flour, grated cheese and salt in a large bowl and slowly whisk in the olive oil and enough of the water to form a thick pouring batter. Leave to rest for half an hour. 

2) For the caramelised onion, put the onion, a drizzle of oil, sugar and salt in a large pan and cook over a medium heat for 7 minutes or until the onions are soft and beginning to brown. Remove from the heat and stir in the crushed garlic. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

3) To cook the socca pizzas. Heat a drizzle of oil in the frying pan and pour in enough batter to cover a 20cm (8 inch) non-stick frying pan. Fry gently on a medium heat for 5 minutes and then flip over and cook for five minute more. Transfer the socca pizza to a baking sheet and repeat with the remaining batter to make four bases.

4) Turn the oven on to 180oC/Gas mark 4.

5) Meanwhile cook the broccoli in a pan of boiling water for 3 minutes and drain. It will still be a firm. 

6) To assemble the pizzas. Dollop each base with caramelised onions, broccoli, prosciutto, cherry tomatoes and mozzarella pearls. Place in the hot oven for 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted. Serve sprinkled with torn basil leaves. 

Cooks Tip: The batter can be made by placing all the ingredients in the goblet of a liquidiser and processing for 30 seconds. This creates a smooth easy to pour batter. 

Variation: The bases can be topped with spinach and ricotta, or mushrooms and slices of butternut squash. 

Frozen Berry Yogurt Cake

Fat in food can cause discomfort in the gut and trigger symptoms, so it is important not to include too much in the diet. This low fat alternative to cheesecake contains a high proportion of fresh and dried fruit and seeds which are all important sources of dietary fibre. The seeds also contain polyunsaturated fatty acids which are good for overall health. 

Prep time: 20 minutes plus 2-3 hours to freeze

Serves 8


300g sunflower seeds

14 medjool dates, stones removed

2 tbsp coconut oil, warmed slightly to soften

450g fresh strawberries, raspberries or mixture of berries

Juice of half lime

120ml clear honey

500g Greek yogurt

Edible flowers to decorate


1) Preheat the oven to 180oC/Gas mark 4. Place the sunflower seeds on a baking sheet in the oven for 5 minutes or until the seeds begin to brown. Remove the seeds from the oven and pulse in a food processor for a few seconds so they roughly chopped. Add the dates, coconut oil and process until the mixture resembles a thick paste. Press the date and seed mixture into the base of a 20cm (8in) spring form cake tin. 

2) Purée the strawberries with the lime juice and honey in a food processor and add the Greek yogurt. Mix well and pour onto the date and seed crust in the cake tin. Place in the freezer for 2-3 hours to freeze. Remove a few minutes before serving. Decorate the top of the cake with berries and edible flowers. 

Cooks tip: Some examples of edible flowers are violas, lavender, oxalis, marigolds, chamomile, rose petals.  

Variation: For a vegan version use a began cream cheese. Raspberries, blueberries and blackberries can all be used instead of strawberries.

Recipes: Dr Joan Ransley for Love Your Gut

What do you think of these recipes? Do you have any of your own to share? 

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