After being labeled a “superfood” so quickly even avocado got whiplash, turmeric has been popping up all over trendy food lists. Though research is still a little hazy on whether or not its health benefits are as extensive as everyone thinks, it’s safe to say turmeric has a positive impact when it comes to easing inflammation and joint pain. Plus, it adds a bright color and peppery taste to pretty much any meal, and works great in grains, soups, smoothies, and proteins (a.k.a. our favorite foods). So while there are plenty of food trends we’re ready to see go, turmeric is one we’re happy to have stick around.
If you’re not on the turmeric train yet and haven’t cooked with the root before, know that you can buy it ground or fresh. The fresh kind is similar to ginger: Peel the skin off and then grate or cut off pieces to cook with. Oh, and to settle the debate once and for all: two r’s, people!
Oats are a staple for anyone looking for something fast and filling and that requires very little effort (read: everyone). This recipe requires just a tad more effort than overnight oats, and is a savory twist on a typically sweet dish—making it preferable for dinner on nights when you’ve got no time. Use nutritional yeast for some cheesy goodness and baby spinach to get in your greens.
We love hummus, but its only downside is the plain kind’s bland color… it can sometimes make the snack feel a little beige. Sweet potatoes and turmeric solve that problem in this recipe that’s basically the color of our favorite fall leaves. Serve with veggies, pita chips, or on a sandwich for a spicy, creamy snack in any season.
This vegan bowl gets a peppery kick thanks to turmeric and paprika. The recipe makes four servings, so it is great for meal prep or at least lunch and dinner for two. With just five whole ingredients—chickpeas, kale, quinoa, yellow potatoes, and avocado—it is super easy to create. If you’re craving more protein, we suggest swapping out one of the starches for chicken or tofu.
Sweet and spicy is always a winning combo in our book. Balance out turmeric, cumin, and red pepper flake-seasoned shrimp with cabbage, mango, and red onion. It’ll have you feeling summery no matter what time of year you make it.
Went a little crazy at the office party/barbecue/birthday celebration? Give your body a healthy dose of much-needed veggies with this colorful, nutrient-rich soup. It packs in kale, carrots, onions, cauliflower, and celery (!), plus white beans and clear noodles to round things out.
If you like piña coladas, and gettin’ lost in the rain… you’ll love this gingery, fruit-packed smoothie. Made with pineapple, banana, nondairy milk, fresh ginger, and turmeric, plus a teaspoon of vanilla extract, this colorful drink has us dreaming of the beach. Add in a little Greek yogurt or vanilla protein powder to make it filling enough to be a meal.
These bite-size snacks are great to have on hand when you’re craving something sweet, especially since they use better-for-you ingredients like unsweetened applesauce, coconut flour, and cashew butter. Plus, as this blogger points out, they look like Golden Snitches, and that’s pretty rad.
Switching out brown rice for white or yellow rice is one of the simplest healthier eating swaps, but it can be a tough one to make. Ease into it with a mental fake-out: Add turmeric and vegetable broth and your rice becomes yummy yellow rice again! Paired with pan-fried tofu and sautéed spinach, this clean-eats meal might just become a new favorite.
Be careful: Once you taste these crispy, tender chicken thighs, you’ll want to eat them all week long. Rub chicken thighs with turmeric, mustard powder, olive oil, salt, and pepper, then bake in the oven with an easy honey-mustard sauce. Serve with cauliflower mashed potatoes or warm greens. Healthy comfort food? You know it.