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The £1 ingredients to supercharge your diet and easy recipe ideas

From a 60p tin of sardines, to frozen blueberries and even tinned tomatoes - these are the budget ingredients that could help you on your way to a healthier and longer life!

Nutritionist Emily English is in the kitchen with her guide to filling your supermarket shop with the best budget ingredients to supercharge your diet and some easy ideas for how to cook with them.

Salmon and Sexy Vegetables

Serves: 2


2 salmon fillets, skin on4 tinned anchovies, roughly chopped½ red chilli, deseeded and diced2 garlic cloves, chopped1 tbsp capers, chopped 1 lemon, zest and juice2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for fryingPinch of salt350g tenderstem broccoli, ends trimmed


1. Dry the salmon fillets well and season with salt and pepper. Leave them skin-side up in the fridge.

2. To make the flavour base, add the anchovies, red chilli, garlic, capers, lemon zest and olive oil to a pestle and mortar. Roughly mash to form a rough paste, season with salt and leave to one side. 

3. Place 2 frying pans over medium-high heat with a little oil. Place the salmon skin-side down in one pan, pressing gently to seal, and leave for 4 minutes. 

4. While the salmon cooks, in the second pan, add 1 tbsp of oil and the tenderstem broccoli. Let the broccoli start to blister slightly for 2 minutes, then tip in 1 tbsp of water, to steam the veg. Once the water has evaporated, add all of the paste and leave to sauté for a few minutes. 

5. Flip the salmon and sear on the opposite side for 2 minutes, then remove. 

6. To serve, portion up a crispy salmon fillet each with half of the stir-fried broccoli. 

Sardine Bolognese

Serves: 4


For the bolognese:2 tins of sardines in olive oil (about 240g total), drained, reserving the oil1 tbsp olive oil 1 large onion, finely chopped2 garlic cloves, minced1 carrot, finely diced1 x 400g can of chopped tomatoes2 tbsp tomato purée1 tsp dried oregano1 tsp dried basil150ml red wine (optional)Salt and pepper, to taste300g spaghetti

To serve: Fresh basil leavesGrated parmesan cheese 


1. Flake the sardines in a bowl and set aside. 

2. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrot and celery and cook for about 8-10 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and the onions are translucent. 

3. Stir in the flaked sardines, chopped tomatoes, tomato purée, oregano and basil. Mix well to combine all the ingredients. Pour in the red wine if using and bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and let the sauce simmer gently for about 20 minutes (the sauce should thicken slightly). Season with salt and pepper according to taste. 

4. While the sauce cooks, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add the spaghetti and cook according to packet instructions until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving a little of the cooking water. 

5. Add the spaghetti to the sauce, tossing well to coat the pasta. If the sauce is too thick, loosen it with a splash of reserved pasta water. 

6. Divide the pasta among plates. Garnish with fresh basil leaves and a generous sprinkle of grated Parmesan.

Herby Turmeric Roasted Potato Wedges

Serves: 4 as a side


1kg (about 6 medium) potatoes, scrubbed and cut into wedges3 tbsp olive oil 1 tsp ground turmeric½ tsp garlic powder1 tsp dried oregano1 tsp dried thyme½ tsp paprika (optional)Fresh parsley, chopped, to garnishSalt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


1. Preheat the oven to 200C and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. 

2. In a large bowl, combine the potato wedges with olive oil, turmeric, garlic powder, dried oregano, dried thyme, and paprika if using. Toss until the potatoes are evenly coated. Season generously with salt and pepper. 

3. Spread the potato wedges out on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer, ensuring they don’t overlap to promote even cooking and crisping. 

4. Roast in the preheated oven for about 35-40 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden, crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Halfway through, turn the wedges to ensure even browning. 

5. Once cooked, remove from the oven and sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley for added flavour and a pop of colour. Serve with a yoghurt dipping sauce. 

Frozen Blueberry Compote

Serves: 6


400g pack of frozen blueberries1 heaped tbsp chia seeds1 tsp vanilla extractHoney to sweeten if neededYoghurt of choice, to serve


1. Simmer the blueberries in a pan until defrosted and bubbling. 

2. Stir in the chia seeds and vanilla extract. Allow to cool slightly. 

3. Serve spooned over yoghurt of choice. 

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