Cooking Them Healthy: Warming Bonfire Food


The Cooking them Healthy  girls have created these warming and delicious recipe ideas in time for Bonfire Night.

There are few things more enjoyable than the crisp autumnal air, ever changing colours and seasonal contrasts whilst ensuring we stay cosy with warming, nutritious foods. We love autumn, but are only too aware that the change in seasons also tends to bring exposure to increased bugs, resulting in more coughs and colds. Here at CTH, we have come up with the perfect Hand-warming recipes for crisp, golden autumnal walks and bonfire nights whilst stocking up on wonderful ingredients to help boost our immune system.

Our warming autumn menu:
Bean stew with cheese & apple scones
Sticky date, apple and ginger cake slices

Vegetable Warming Stew
Stews are a brilliant way of combining pulses & beans with vegetables to provide a real nutrient boost for children. Pulses and beans are a great source of vegetable protein and make a nice alternative, or in fact addition, to meat dishes adding wonderful texture and flavour. Pulses & beans are also rich in fibre which is important for digestive health, as well as valuable vitamins and minerals including iron which is a key nutrient to support energy levels. Sweet potato and carrots are rich in beta-carotene to help support the immune system.

You can adapt this recipe to include other seasonal root vegetables or pulses, and try adding different spices combinations for variety. Cumin & warming cinnamon for example will give the stew a more Moroccan flavour.

Stews also freeze well so it is always worth making extra and freezing portions for other days when comfort food is required. This is also delicious served with a baked sweet or white potato and steamed garlicky broccoli.


coconut oil butter for sweating
1 onion – chopped
1 cloves garlic finely chopped/ pasted
1 tablespoon tomato puree
2 carrots – chopped
2 celery – chopped
2 parsnips – chopped
1 tin chopped tomatoes 400g
1 small tin butter beans
1 small tin kidney beans
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
500ml chicken stock
A few sprigs thyme
Its important to mention that when making a chunky stew like this one its best to think about your vegetable sizes when chopping  – keeping the vegetables uniform sizes will help them cook at the same rate as well as looking better.

Place a tablespoon of coconut oil (or butter) into a large saucepan (with a fitting lid) and on a medium to low heat warm through and melt. Next add in your onions and allow to cook through and soften gently – this will take about 5-10 minutes. Then add in your carrots and celery and cook and soften for a further 5 minutes. Next add in the parsnips and cook for a few minutes and then the garlic. Cook the garlic out for no more than a minute before adding in the tomato puree and smoked paprika and then the chicken stock, chopped tomatoes and sprigs of thyme. Bring up to a boil and then down to a simmer.

Place the lid on the saucepan and cook all the vegetables for 10-15 minutes on a gentle simmer until cooked through. Take the lid off and add in the kidney and butter beans and cook everything together for another 10 – 15 minutes. You want to reduce liquid down so its not watery and a stew like consistency. Taste and season to your liking.

Remove the sprigs of thyme before serving.


Cheese & Apple Scones
These delicious scones make a nice change from bread and are great fun to make with your children on a wet and rainy day. They are naturally sweetened by apple and contain oats for fibre, as well as energy boosting B vitamins.  Cheese provides a welcome protein hit, helping to keep little ones feeling fuller for longer.


Makes approx 10 scones

50g porridge oats (gluten free if desired)
150g white spelt flour
40g cold butter – grated
90ml milk
1 small apple – grated
40g cheddar – grated
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder



Pre heat the oven to 200 degrees C.

Sieve the flour into a medium sized bowl and add the baking powder. Grate the cold butter into the flour bowl and then using your finger tips, rub the butter and flour together, until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Do this quickly so as not to heat up the butter. Add the grated apple and cheese, then stir in the oats. Mix all together.

Next, using a cutlery knife for mixing, make a well in the centre of your floury mix and gradually pour in the milk, working the ingredients together to form a soft and slightly sticky dough – start by adding 3/4 of the liquid, then add more gradually if needed

Turn the scone mix out onto a floured work top and using your hands, gently bring everything together into a disc. Flatten until about 1 inch thick. Flour a round pasty cutter and stamp out your scones.

Place the scones onto a lightly floured baking sheet and bake in the top of the oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden and firm to the touch.

Serve ideally whilst warm with butter.


Sticky Date and Apple Cake Slices
These lovely cakes slices are bursting with warming spices. Molasses is a wonderful source of iron which helps to boost energy and we use the dates and apple for natural sweetness. This cake can can easily be made gluten free by replacing the spelt flour for gluten free. Cakes like these just get better and better with age and store brilliantly in an air tight container as well as being frozen.


150g spelt flour
2 eggs
55g dark brown muscavado sugar
1 apple grated
1 apple sliced
60g dates finely chopped
100g blackstrap molasses
110g butter
2cm fresh grated ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp bicarb of soda
Pre heat the oven to 170 and have the middle oven shelf ready.

Line a 9 inch by 5 inch loaf tin with silicone paper/ non stick baking parchment.

Place the butter, blackstrap molasses and dark brown muscavado sugar into a small pan and gently melt together. When all melted together leave to cool.

Pour your cooled butter/ molasses mix into a large bowl and quickly stir in your eggs until well incorporated. Next add in your dates, grated apple and fresh ginger. Sift over your spelt flour, cinnamon and bicarb of soda and gently fold all together until one smooth mix.

Pour into your prepared tin and then place your sliced apple pieces on top.

Bake in the centre of the oven for 40-45 minutes. Or until tested with a skewer and it comes out clean.

Leave to cool on a wire wrack.

They are amazing served in slices or square chunks still warm.

If these winter warmers are teasing your taste buds then take a look at Cooking them Healthy‘s blog for more tasty and nutritious family food ideas.