It doesn’t have to be difficult

After all the chocolate, crisps and pigs-in-blankets we’ve consumed over Christmas, many of us will be looking to up our fruit and veg intake in January. It doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive – and it’s 10 times easier with Sainsbury’s who are offering 10x Nectar points on all fruit and veg – fresh or frozen. Find out more at https://www.nectar.com/brands/sainsburys 

Still, if you’re struggling to hit that magic number, try these simple hacks to get your five-a-day.

1. Start the day as you mean to go on

Tick off one of your five-a-day before you’ve even left the house by adding a handful of berries to breakfast cereal. Or try heating a banana up with your porridge – it gives your bowl of oats a delicious caramelly sweetness that doesn’t need any extra sugar.

2. Juice

Juicing isn’t just for Hollywood celebs, it’s a quick and simple way of packing in two fruit or veg portions in a glass. You can choose any fruit or veg, for example mixed berries and half a banana or half a mango; kale and apple; apple and carrot. Frozen fruit works well for juices, and if you make it the night before you simply need to grab and go in the morning.

3. Bite-sized fruit and veg

Pre-sliced fruit and veg – such as melon and carrot batons – are readily available and make a great mid-morning snack. And here’s another trick – if you dip those carrots in hummus and guacamole, you’ll score double as they both count towards your five-a-day.

4. Add tomato purée

A tablespoon and a half of tomato purée (about what you would put in a spaghetti Bolognese) will provide you with one of your five-a-day. This is especially useful – and a little crafty – if you’re trying to up your vegetable-shy kids’ portions of fruit and veg.

5. Swap a regular potato for a sweet potato

Sadly, the average potato doesn’t count towards your five-a-day. But, all is not lost, as sweet potatoes do count, packing a nutritional punch with a hefty dose of vitamin A and C. They even count in chip form.

6. Frozen fruit & veg count too

Having a packet of peas, spinach, carrots or any other veg handy in the freezer will make it easy to add a handful of greens to a chilli, stew or lasagne for an extra veg hit. Three heaped tablespoons are a portion. Frozen fruit also works a treat thrown in to smoothies. And if you need an added incentive, stocking up on frozen veg in January will earn you 10x Nectar points at Sainsbury’s.

7. Half meat portions

Use just half of the meat you were going to use in Bolognese, stews or chilli and bulk out the rest with extra vegetables and pulses (chickpeas, lentils, butter beans – all one of your five-a-day) instead.  Or why not swap your burger for a large flat mushroom which is every bit as juicy, and sprinkled with garlic a double whammy of vegetable points (not to mention taste ones too).

8. Make soup

Homemade soup is easy, cheap and one big five-a-day hit in a bowl. The brilliant thing about soup is that it’s a great way of using up leftover vegetables, and if you’ve got frozen peas, an onion (another one of your five-a-day) and five spare minutes, you’re already half way to a delicious homemade soup.

Read our tips on sticking to your resolutions here.