Tomato & Sweet Potato Soup

Baked Apples with Rosemary & Honey

Pound Cake

Fall Vegetable Soup



I’m not a fan of juicing because it takes out all the fiber, leaving behind the nutrients yes, but also all the sugar. This is one of the reasons people always feel so good and full of energy after drinking juice, but sadly it’s the sugar rush not the nutrients they’re feeling. Smoothies on the other hand contain whole foods, with all the nutrients and all the fiber. Fiber is so good for us. It can be cancer protective of our GI systems, and aside from keeping things moving, it helps to make many of the nutrients not only more bio-available, but slows down the absorption of the sugars by the body. It also makes you feel fuller, so you don’t overindulge, which is all too easy to do with juices. Here are some favorites.

Quick Kale Smoothie

Kale is one of the super greens but it can taste bitter when raw, which many people find off-putting. Not with this yummy smoothie. It blends kale with apple and frozen mango chunks for sweetness, and is a wonderful way to get the power of kale in a truly delicious, nutritious drink!

Avocado and Pineapple Smoothie

Avocados are a great source of healthy fats, and where weight loss is an issue during cancer treatment, they are a healthy source for much needed calories. Avocado also helps to make foods smoother and easier to swallow by sore mouths or throats. This smoothie packs calories, protein and healthy fats in the most creamy and delicious way. If mouth soreness is an issue, use a frozen banana instead of pineapple.

Almond Blueberry and Banana Smoothie

This is a delicious vegan smoothie that blends all the antioxidant power of blueberries together with almonds in the form of almond butter and unsweetened almond milk. For extra sweetness and thickness, we’ve added our favorite smoothie secret weapon – a frozen banana!

Orange Carrot Smoothie with Ginger and Dates

I love this hi-cal vegan treat. It’s a great way to help get to your 5-a-day. Raw carrots are bursting with vitamins A and C, while ground flax seeds add bulk and healthy omega 3 fats, not to mention additional fiber. Ginger is of course great for digestion, and to my mind, there is nothing better to sweeten smoothies than pitted dates.

Chocolate Quinoa Smoothie

This rather naughty tasting smoothie is a great way to use cooked quinoa. Thanks to the Dutch processed cocoa powder, it is so chocolaty, you’d never know that quinoa was in there. Quinoa has complete protein so this can make a great breakfast or snack on the fly. And although Dutch processed chocolate has no sugar in it at all, I would add the agave nectar to taste, because if as I do, you like your chocolate to taste bittersweet, you may not need all of the sweetener.

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Soups for Bland Diet

Soups for a bland diet

During cancer treatment, food can become difficult in a thousand ways.  Nausea aside, chemotherapy especially can mess with your G.I. system horribly, as can surgeries for many gastric cancers. Times like these call for a diet of bland, white low fiber foods that soothe your insides. But it doesn’t have to be as dull as it sounds. Soothing, comforting yet delicious food in the form soup is what this class is about. Soups are easy to eat, nourishing, and provide simple, soothing yet delicious options for us to sip on when we feel low. They can help us stay nourished and feel comforted even on our worst days. And once the cancer journey is done, trust me, they work pretty well during flu season too. Enjoy!

Egg Noodles in Broth

This quick soup is one of the reasons why I always have homemade stock in my freezer. Although my treatment is behind me, when I am tired and want something nourishing in a hurry, this is the perfect dish for me. A soothing standby, this nutritious soup is great for those on either a neutropenic, anti microbial, low fiber or bland diet. The spinach adds minerals and vitamins, and if you need them, the noodles add calories. All in all, this is a perfect treatment comfort food.

Leek and Potato Soup

This great winter soup is super easy to digest and super fast to put together. You can have literally have it on the table 30 minutes after thinking about it. Just the thing when you don’t have a lot of time or are feeling tired and don’t have a lot of energy. And it is very, very tasty. The dark leek greens give the soup extra flavor, while the yogurt gives the soup a creamy tang. And although I say it’s wintry, when pureed, it is also really delicious chilled with an extra dollop of Greek yogurt for some extra calories.

Lesson On Miso: Part 1 Miso Soup

If you are vegetarian or vegan, miso soup is wonderfully nourishing and comforting standby. It’s simply miso paste added to a basic broth, traditionally seaweed based dashi. Miso paste can be stirred into soups that use all kinds of vegetables and vegetable proteins like tofu. If you’ve never tried cooking with it, give it a go. It’s great to have around your kitchen as not only can it add great flavor to your cooking, it practically never expires. To top that, miso paste is a probiotic so can help aid digestion. This video will give you a short tutorial on the different types of miso followed by my quick way to make basic miso soup!

Chicken Soup

What can I say? Chicken soup is the perfect go-to when you feel unwell, no matter what the cause, be it the ‘flu or chemo blues. Studies have even shown that it really can help make you feel better. This video will show you how to make this comforting classic, soup. If you want to bulk it up, throw in a 1/4 cup of uncooked white rice. It’s delicious!

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Acorn Squash

How to Cut Celery Root

Making the Best of Canned Tomatoes

Making the Best of Canned Tomatoes

At Cook for Your Life we’re all about stocking up on pantry basics to make cooking easy no matter what you’re going through, whether cancer treatment has left you wiped out, or you simply don’t feel like going out to the store. One of my favorite basics to keep on hand are plain, diced or whole, unseasoned canned tomatoes. In the winter months they are so much more flavorful to cook with than hothouse tomatoes, not to mention cheaper, plus they give our bodies better access to tomato’s cancer fighting  antioxidant lycopene. On the practical cooking side, they can be used to make dozens of different recipes from soups, to pastas, to chilis and beyond. All are easy.  The 4 videos we’ve chosen for this lesson will show you how to make the best use of this fabulously useful kitchen staple.

Black Bean Chilli

In this video you’ll use diced tomatoes to make an easy, totally yummy, black bean chili. I love this dish because it’s not only a delicious meal that you can get on the table in about 40 minutes, but its main ingredients are all basic pantry items – canned diced tomatoes, black beans, bayleaf, cumin seed, garlic and onion. The extras you’ll need are few: a poblano pepper, a can of chipotle in adobo, which will keep in the fridge once opened, a lime and some cilantro.  As we cook together, you’ll see just how quick and easy this great recipe is.

Tomato & Sweet Potato Soup

This deliciously simple, gorgeously orange soup is literally just canned tomatoes and sweet potato, enhanced with pantry basics like garlic, onion and bay leaf. It takes about an hour start to finish, with minimal prep on the cutting board. The key is slow cooking the onion and sweet potatoes at the beginning. Let’s cook up a batch together so you can see not just how to do that, but how little it takes to get a really good soup on the table.

Spiced Beet & Tomato Soup

Tomatoes and beets are a marriage made in heaven. I came to love beets late in life. As a child I’d hated them. Then a vegetarian friend of mine served me some roasted. It was love, and I started to cook with raw beets myself. This easy soup started out as a curry. It’s very simple and uses canned tomatoes, onions and of course beets. The color is absolutely unbelievable as is the flavor. Try it with a swirl of Greek yoghurt and a pinch of chopped cilantro.

Quick and Easy Tuna Pasta

When tomatoes are out of season, canned are often a better buy than fresh for cooking. This recipe is a case in point. Some Italian friends I stayed with in the Marche one summer taught me this quick and tasty pasta dish made with canned tuna. It’s delicious. The tomatoes need to be really ripe to make it, so in winter when truly vine ripened tomatoes aren’t available, you can chop up little grape tomatoes, but for a real taste of summer from the pantry, I find canned diced tomatoes make the best substitute.

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Poached Pears