Turmeric is an Indian spice that has been used for thousands of years to dye clothes - and treat a variety of illnesses. In particular, the active ingredient curcumin gives turmeric anti-inflammatory effects. Studies have linked the turmeric to reducing the severity of colds, helping indigestion and weight loss, assisting those with diabetes and possibly even reducing the risk of heart attack or stroke.
|A few of the benefits (via Pinterest)!|
Wondering how to color up your daily eats with turmeric? Here are some of my favorite ways to chow down!
First, I typically start my mornings with either oatless oatmeal or a smoothie bowl. Coincidentally, both are great ways to get a turmeric boost! One of my favorite parts of turmeric powder is that, in small doses and especially when paired with other spices, it doesn't have an overwhelming flavor. This means I can add it to my cacao oatless oatmeal (along with cinnamon and maca powder) without anyone knowing - besides the bright yellow color, of course!
Smoothies are even more versatile since you can either use the powder or throw in turmeric root (which I've previously purchased at Sprouts). Considering that I eat my smoothies after my morning PE class during the week, adding turmeric ensures my muscles get an extra anti-inflammatory hit.
Turmeric also appears in many of my savory dishes. One of the easiest (and most practical) applications? Sprinkling it in homemade vegan cheese! Either when I'm whipping up my veggie Mac and cheese or blending Brandi's vegan cheese sauce, I always add a bit of turmeric for color. Who says healthy food can't look pretty too?
If you're more of a meat and potatoes kind of peep, turmeric also has your back. As temperatures are FALLing (welcome back puns!), one of my favorite slow cooker recipes is potato korma. Basically imagine soft, tender potatoes in a paleo-friendly thick sauce ready as soon as you walk in the door from work! Turmeric not only adds color, but also an earthy flavor that makes it a truly cozy, comforting meal.
Lastly, when I'm working on homework before bed and my sweet tooth demands a sacrifice, I offer up some homemade turmeric-spiced granola! Some of my favorite parts of baking is sneaking in extra veggies or "healthifying" old favorite recipes. And, considering how addicting granola can be, it's a prime candidate for a little nutrient TLC.
Case in point, my green smoothie granola recipe. It's packed with zucchini, spinach and turmeric, yet all anyone can taste is the banana, coconut and chocolate chips. Perfect night snack for anyone with the (studying induced or otherwise) munchies. And when doubt over how to use a spice? Toss it into my bliss balls recipe! Super food, super yummy snacking material!
I've been using turmeric for a few months now and have yet to develop superpowers. (Unless it's the ability to make a huge smoothie bowl disappear in an hour or less). Turmeric is, however, a super easy and delicious way to get more antioxidants from your meals!
*Also found at Running with Spoon's link party!*
Have you ever used turmeric in your cooking? What are your favorite spices or "super foods?" Comment below!