All you need for the vegetarian Summer 2018 Healthy Diet Plan

    Find all the nutritious recipes for our vegetarian 7-day Summer Healthy Diet Plan – plus an at-a-glance chart so you can see what's on the menu each day.

    Healthy Diet Plan logo for Summer 2018

    Welcome to BBC Good Food's Healthy Diet Plan for Summer 2018! This page contains everything you need to follow the plan. Scroll down or click the links below to get started. Looking for the meat-eater’s plan? We have a separate page just for you.

    1. How to use the plan
    2. Your shopping list for the week
    3. Your menu chart for the week
    4. The recipes for the plan
    5. How to customise the plan – snacks and extra recipes

    Whether you're aiming to lose weight, increase your energy levels or just glow with health, our brand-new Healthy Diet Plan is here to help. Discover seven days of brand-new recipes that have all been triple-tested and rigorously nutritionally analysed to ensure that you're getting all the nutrients you need to look and feel fantastic.

    At BBC Good Food we believe that the healthiest way of eating is focused around whole, natural foods, and our diet plans are no different. All the recipes are packed with healthy fats, lean protein and slow-release carbs, as well as minimising processed products. We've also included a variety of vegetarian and vegan recipes throughout the week.

    The results? You can expect to cut down on added sugar, increase your energy levels, improve your digestion, lose excess weight and support your immune system.

    1. How to use the plan

    Use the chart below to see your weekly menu at a glance. To get the most from the plan, we recommend eating the breakfasts, lunches and dinners in the order set out in the chart. This means that each day will deliver a balance of protein, fat and carbs, helping to manage hormonal and blood sugar levels, as well as optimal nutrient levels each day. You'll also achieve all five of your 5-a-day and keep within the recommended Reference Intakes (RI) for fats, protein, sugar, salt and kcals while following the latest guidance on your intake of 'free' sugars. As with any lifestyle or diet change, if you have any concerns or health issues we would encourage you to check with your GP before embarking on our plans.

    If this is a new way of eating for you, our registered nutritionist, Kerry Torrens, suggests you begin by introducing some of the recipes a day or two before starting the full seven days. This will allow your digestive system time to adapt to the more fibre-rich foods we’ve included. To help you supercharge your results, read Kerry's six tips to make the most of the plan.

    2 . Your shopping list for the week

    To help you get organised, we've designed a handy shopping list so you can buy everything you need in one shop — just remember to check the packets for sell-by dates to make sure they'll last until the end of the week.

    Download the printable vegetarian shopping list.

    3. Your menu chart for the week

    The vegetarian menu for the Summer Healthy Diet Plan 2018

    4. The recipes for the plan

    Our plan covers breakfast, lunch and dinner and serves two people for seven days (sometimes with leftovers for another day on the plan) — although the recipes can be easily scaled up or down. If you would rather include meat, we have a separate plan just for you.

    Get the Healthy Diet Plan recipes with meat.

    Breakfasts

    Glasses filled with peach, oranges, yogurt and topped with ginger oats

    Peach & orange yogurt pots with ginger oats

    Calcium, vitamin C, one of 5-a-day, vegetarian

    Add a little sweetness to your mornings with these easy fruit and yogurt pots. If you're not eating porridge at this time of year, this is a good way to include oats in your diet and still enjoy their heart-friendly benefits. This recipe makes four servings – enough for two people on two mornings.

    A pancake topped with blueberry compote

    Banana & cinnamon pancakes with blueberry compote

    Low-calorie, one of 5-a-day, vegetarian

    Pancakes on a healthy eating plan? You'd better believe it! We've packed the batter with wholemeal flour, cinnamon, milk and banana, then whisked up the egg whites separately to give them a delicious fluffy texture. Blueberries are rich in anthocyanins, which studies have linked to improved memory and heart health. They taste really good too!

    A mushroom and potato hash on a plate topped with a poached egg

    Mushroom hash with poached eggs

    Healthy, three of 5-a-day, folate, fibre, vitamin C, gluten-free, vegetarian

    This is a really satisfying breakfast or weekend brunch, packing in plenty of smoky paprika flavour and satiating protein from the eggs. This recipe makes enough for two breakfasts, so eat one the morning you make them and pack away the rest for another day. Mushrooms are a useful source of zinc, a key nutrient for supporting the immune system and maintaining healthy skin.

    A strawberry, avocado and spinach smoothie in a glass bottle

    Strawberry green goddess smoothie

    One of 5-a-day, calcium, vitamin C, folate, fibre, gluten-free, vegetarian

    This green smoothie is packed with goodness, including strawberries, spinach, avocado, yogurt and orange. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin, so it is best absorbed when eaten with some fat or oil. Avocados are naturally rich in vitamin E and good-for-you fats, making them the perfect combination for adding a creamy texture to this smoothie. This super quick and easy breakfast option is portable too – simply pop into a bottle or flask and take to work.

    Lunches

    A plate of spaghetti served with pepper, courgettes, garlic, lemon, basil and pine nuts

    Pepper & lemon spaghetti with basil & pine nuts

    Healthy, low-calorie, two of 5-a-day, folate, fibre, vitamin C, iron, vegetarian

    This makes a quick, delicious veggie lunch ideal for the weekend. Wholemeal spaghetti is a much better choice than the white, refined variety – wholemeal is nutrient dense, supplies energising B vitamins and will help keep you fuller for longer. If you're veggie but want to add the optional cheese on top, use a vegetarian variety of hard cheese.

    A plate of griddled vegetables including courgette, tomatoes and aubergines

    Griddled vegetables with melting aubergines

    Five of 5-a-day, healthy, low-calorie, vegan, folate, fibre, vitamin C, gluten-free, vegetarian

    They say to eat a rainbow – how about fitting it all onto one plate? Pack in an amazing five of your 5-a-day in this super-healthy lunch, delicious griddled inside or seared on a barbecue. This lunch provides a good balance of nutrients too.

    A bowl of green soup made with courgette, leek and goat's cheese

    Courgette, leek & goat's cheese soup

    Healthy, three of 5-a-day, low-calorie, low-fat, folate, fibre, vitamin C, iron, vegetarian

    So much more than just a delicious midday meal, this soup is packed with spinach and bursting with nutrients, including protective plant compounds called carotenoids which are important for our skin, hair, eye and bone health. Serve with a side of rye bread to mop up every last drop.

    Bowls filled with a grain mix of bulgur and quinoa, topped with different vegetables

    Bulgur & quinoa lunch bowls

    Healthy, low-calorie, folate, fibre, vitamin C, three of 5-a-day, iron

    Get ahead during the week with this simple meal prep idea. Make one base then top with different ingredients so you have two very different tasting lunches. We've paired avocado, tomato, basil and olives for one flavour, then chickpeas, beetroot, mint and orange in the other. Supplying slow-release energy to see you through the afternoon, these lunch bowls also provide an impressive three of your 5-a-day.

    Cumin spiced halloumi with corn slaw

    Cumin spiced halloumi with corn slaw

    Healthy, low-calorie, low-fat, calcium, folate, fibre, vitamin C, three of 5-a-day, gluten-free

    Serve up a plate full of sunshine flavours with this zesty turmeric halloumi and tasty slaw supper. This recipe makes enough for dinner on one night, with leftovers stored in the fridge to pop in a lunch box for another day. This full-flavoured dish is packed with texture and colour – the fibre and natural bio yogurt make it a gut-friendly option.

    Dinners

    A wholemeal flatbread topped with tomatoes, avocados and other vegetables

    Avocado pizza crisps

    Healthy, vegan, low-calorie, fibre, vitamin C, four of 5-a-day

    With the focus on skin-friendly vegetables like avocados, peppers and tomatoes, our healthy take on a pizza nourishes from the inside out, while satisfying that need for something crisp and delicious. This recipe is vegan and provides an impressive four of your 5-a-day. The wholemeal base is super simple and uses wholemeal flour to increase the fibre content.

    A summery egg salad with lettuce, green beans, new potatoes and peas

    Summer egg salad with basil & peas

    Healthy, low-calorie, iron, folate, fibre, three of 5-a-day, gluten-free

    This salad is packed with leafy greens, French beans and herbs and will supply energising iron and stress-busting B vitamins. We've served this satisfying salad as a delicious dinner option, but it would also be great packed into a lunchbox as a portable midday meal.

    A curried chickpea cake topped with tomato and cucumber salad

    Curried chickpea cake with tomato sambal

    Healthy, low-calorie, calcium, folate, vitamin C, iron, four of 5-a-day, gluten-free

    Combine chickpeas, spices and eggs to make this fabulous savoury cake to serve in wedges with an Indian-style salad. Chickpeas contain magnesium, which we need for healthy bone structure and energy production.

    A vegetarian dish topped with a dukkah sprinkle

    Egyptian courgettes with dukkah sprinkle

    Vegan, healthy, low-fat, calcium, folate, fibre, vitamin C, iron, five of 5-a-day, gluten-free

    This flavour-packed dinner has all five of your 5-a-day on one plate. Spices don't just taste good – many cultures recognise their beneficial qualities, too. Seeds like coriander may help regulate cholesterol, while cumin may help reduce inflammation and protect the cardiovascular system.

    A bowl of spaghetti with red beans, spinach and tomatoes in a spicy sauce

    Spaghetti puttanesca with red beans & spinach

    Healthy, low-fat, low-calorie, calcium, folate, fibre, vitamin C, iron, four of 5-a-day

    This filling veggie supper packs in four of your 5-a-day in one quick, easy dish, as well as providing vitamin C and iron. We've used wholemeal spaghetti to push up the fibre content and keep you fuller for longer.

    5. How to customise the plan

    Everyone has different needs and lifestyle requirements, which is why our plans are easy to adapt. If you find you are hungry or you would like to increase the daily calories, try adding our healthier snacks and sweet treat suggestions. These recipes are all based around whole foods and keep the processed ingredients to a minimum.

    If you want to mix up the menu so you can follow the plan in the longer term, or you don't like a particular dish on the menu, you can swap it for one of our extra Healthy Diet Plan dishes, which all follow the same nutritional guidelines as the recipes in this plan. Please bear in mind that adding snacks or swapping recipes will alter the overall calories and recommended daily intakes for the day.

    About the Healthy Diet Plan

    Still hungry?

    The calories you need on a daily basis vary depending on your age, height, weight, sex and activity levels. There are numerous calculators you can use online to determine your optimum calorie intake but we’ve based our daily menu plans on no more than 1,500 calories. For the average female, who is moderately active, this should generate a shortfall allowing for steady and controlled weight loss. For those who are hungry on the plan, require a higher calorie intake or are happy with their weight, take a look at our healthier snacks and sweet treat ideas. As with any lifestyle or diet change, if you have any concerns or health issues we would encourage you to check with your GP before embarking on our plans.

    A bowl of almond, raisin and popcorn trail mix

    A note on fat

    Fat is in most of the foods we eat – meat, fish, nuts, seeds and grains as well as dairy and eggs. Obtaining fat from these whole foods is a healthier way of getting this essential macronutrient. We need fat for healthy skin, to boost our mood and improve concentration, as well as for a well-functioning immune system. Our recipes include full-fat rather than processed low-fat ingredients, like yogurt, and extra virgin cold-pressed oils rather than refined ones. That’s because all fats are not equal; we should avoid processed, refined fats and oils and limit (but not exclude) our intake of the saturated variety.

    Two glass tumblers filled with yogurt, raspberries, blueberries and mint

    A note on dairy

    We've used full-fat milk and whole bio yogurt in our recipes. These contain around 4% fat and because of this, they're richer in essential fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K. If you prefer the taste of semi-skimmed milk and reduced-fat yogurt, or you've been advised to reduce your saturated fat intake, you can swap for these. You'll still reap the benefit from the calcium and protein that dairy contains, but be aware that the fat-soluble vitamins will be reduced.

    A plate with date and walnut cinnamon bites

    A note on sugar

    We’ve used naturally sweet ingredients like fruit, dried fruit and sweeter-tasting veg, like beetroot, so we can slash the amount of added ‘free’ sugars in our recipes.

    Please email any questions about the recipes to goodfoodwebsite@bbc.com and we'll do our best to help.


    All health content from BBC Good Food is provided for general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other healthcare professional. Any healthy diet plan featured by BBC Good Food is provided as a suggestion of a general balanced diet and should not be relied upon to meet specific dietary requirements. If you have any concerns about your general health, you should contact your local healthcare provider.

    Comments, questions and tips

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    stevethecow
    19th Jun, 2018
    We're liking this so far. Well thought out balance of recipes. I've liked all so far even though I was dubious in some. Only criticism so far is that the shopping list isn't that accurate. E.g it turned out 1kg of courgett didn't equal the number we needed. Either stick to weights or numbers, not a mix.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    21st Jun, 2018
    We're glad to hear that you are enjoying the plan. Thanks for your feedback on the shopping list – we will take this into consideration for our next plan.
    emmajstroud
    12th Jun, 2018
    I've loved the recipes I've tried so far, though I haven't followed the plan to the letter as it's hard to make lunches in advance and my husband won't follow so I end up with extra helpings, but the calorie count looks way off 1500 per day. Pancakes < 200, soup ~300, and spaghetti puttanesca ~400 for example - all delicious and can't say I'm going hungry but 900 calories for the day? This is way under recommended levels. Looking through the other days seem to be similar. Are they assuming 500 calories of drinks?? I think this could be clearer.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    20th Jun, 2018
    Thank you for your message. We’ve amended the first section of this article to say ‘no more than 1500 kcals per day’, thanks for pointing this out. There is room to add some healthy snacks each day if you like – we’ve tried to make the plans as easy to adapt depending on your individual needs as possible. We’re glad to hear that you’re enjoying the recipes. If you’d like some options that are higher in calories you can try our extra Healthy Diet Plan dishes. Healthier snack ideas: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/healthy-diet-plan-summer-2017-snacks-sweet-treats Extra Healthy Diet Plan dishes: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/healthy-diet-plan-extra-recipes
    ks44pel50
    5th Jun, 2018
    Very uninspiring meals and weekly plan! The meal plan is not well thought out...banana and cinnamon pancakes with blueberry compote repeat on Thursday and Friday for both vegetarian and meat eater! Nice photos.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    21st Jun, 2018
    Thanks for your feedback. We try to minimise the amount of preparation and cooking time in order to make the plan as easy to follow as possible, which sometimes means repeating meals or using leftovers in another dish. If you'd like to swap out particular dishes, you might like to try our extra Healthy Diet Plan recipes: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/howto/guide/healthy-diet-plan-extra-recipes
    Stephanie Rew's picture
    Stephanie Rew
    14th Jun, 2018
    I have just signed up and am really impressed. What I don't understand though is whether there is a different 7 day plan issued for each week, if so when is it released/emailed out please? I can't see any reference to this information anywhere. thanks for your help, Steph
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    21st Jun, 2018
    Thanks for your message – we're glad to hear that you like this plan. We currently publish our seven-day Healthy Diet Plans twice a year. If you'd like to try previous diet plans, you can find links to all the sign up pages here: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/content/sign-our-new-diet-plans
    blake1313's picture
    blake1313
    12th Jun, 2018
    Could you kindly advise where is the recipe for the avocado and olive bulgar lunch bowl please?
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    13th Jun, 2018
    Thanks for your question - it's labelled above as the bulgar & quinoa lunch bowl and you can also find it here: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/bulgur-quinoa-lunch-bowls
    Deirdre Cameron's picture
    Deirdre Cameron
    5th Jun, 2018
    I hate bananas. Can anyone suggest a suitable substitute and relevant portions to use in the pancake recipe. So far I've identified pumpkin and puree mixes of dried and fresh fruit as possible alternatives, but I don't know if they would work and I cannot find advice anywhere on how much pumpkin or fruity sludge equals a banana.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    5th Jun, 2018
    Thanks for your question. You can substitute with the following recipe, using the compote from the original one. https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/healthy-pancakes
    Be the first to suggest a tip for this recipe...Got your own twist on this recipe? Or do you have suggestions for possible swaps and additions? We’d love to hear your ideas.