Cinnamon French toast

Fancied something different for breakfast this morning so decided to make some French toast, all syn free when you use the bread as part of your healthy extra B choice and the milk as part of your healthy extra A choice. I topped it with fresh berries but you can use anything you like – jam, fromage frais, honey etc. just remember to keep track of the syns you add. Enjoy x

Serves: 1

Syns: FREE, using healthy extra choices

Time Taken: 15 minutes

Difficulty: Easy

Cinnamon French Toast


  • 2 slices of wholemeal bread (from a 400g loaf)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 tbsp sweetener
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

French toast ingredients


Beat the eggs with the milk, sweetener and ground cinnamon.

Place a slice of bread in a shallow plate and pour half the egg mixture to it. Let it soak for a minute and then turn it around to soak the other side. Repeat for the other slice.

Spray low cal cooking spray oil to a frying pan and cook each slice of bread at a time for around 2-3 minutes on each side.

Serve with fresh fruit or any other toppings of your choice.

Slimming World Changes

By now you’re probably aware that Slimming World has shared some exciting news that will take place at the end of the year/ new year. I have posted below a copy of what has been shared. Remember you can find out more info about this from your SW consultant. He/she will be able to answer any questions if you feel confused after reading this. To me, it is all good news! How fab is it you can now enjoy both milk and cheese options in the same day without counting one of them as syns? And I am so excited that paneer has finally made it to the healthy extra A choices. What do you think of these changes SW will be introducing? Have you already started to put them in place?


Food Optimising changes from Christmas!

Our Nutrition team here at Slimming World regularly review the latest scientific and nutrition research, food trends and product information to make sure our generous Food Optimising stays bang up-to-date and in line with current guidance, so that you can achieve the very best weight loss results in the very healthiest way.

To help you achieve your dream in 2019, you’ll receive a special limited edition NEW MEMBER PACK FOR FREE when you come along to group during Christmas week or New Year week. And, in it, you might spot a few changes to Food Optimising:

1. Enjoy an additional Healthy Extra ‘a’ choice every Extra Easy day – for even more calcium and even more choice!
2. Due to new nutrition information:

A handful of Free Foods have lost their P symbols – baked beans, broad beans, mung beans and all varieties of peas (except split peas)

A few Healthy Extra ‘a’ choices have changed.

A Healthy Extra portion of whole cow’s milk has increased to 200ml

The Healthy Extra portions of rice and almond milk have both decreased to 400ml

40g Paneer cheese is now a Healthy Extra ‘a’ choice!

Some products are no longer Healthy Extras:

Kelloggs Special K Milk Chocolate Delight Bar

Sweetened dairy-free milk

Reduce fat/light soft cheese (including Philadelphia Light)

Soft goat’s cheese

3. And on an Extra Easy SP day, enjoy at least half a plate of Speed food, and the rest Protein-rich food as usual. Plus two Healthy Extra ‘a’ choices and one Healthy Extra ‘b’ choice and, to boost your weight loss further, a maximum of 10 Syns.

This is in addition to the changes we let you know about earlier in the year, that fat-free flavoured yogurts canned pasta in tomato sauce and instant mashed potato now have a small Syn value, and that some vegan-friendly products including canned jackfruit and plain/smoked seitan are now Free Food.

If you’ve spotted that one of your favourites is no longer a Healthy Extra, you’ll get plenty of ideas in group for Free Food and Healthy Extra alternatives. And if you’d love to adopt some of those changes from today – feel free!

Extra Easy SP

Please note: This post has been edited to reflect the changes Slimming World has announced this week.

Picture this, a weekend spent going over your syns limit, some may be worth the extra syns, others not so much. Then you remember weigh day is looming so you’re in need of a quick fix, hands up who turns to Extra Easy SP for a miracle maintain or even a loss that week?

Well, let me tell you that this isn’t why this plan was designed! Extra Easy SP is not a quick fix to undo damage you have done, you might get lucky and maintain or even lose that week but realistically many of us do not. As a consultant I had a few disappointed members who after an over indulgent weekend or mid week event followed by the Extra Easy SP for a few days didn’t get the results they’d hoped for.

I can assure you that when followed 100% without tweaking the plan and definitely not after going over your maximum syns over a day or more, it will give you the results you want. The plan is designed to re-boot your motivation if you’re struggling a bit, it is perfect for those getting closer to target and are looking to shift those last few pesky lbs or for those that may have a special occasion looming and are in need of a weight loss boost.

If you are thinking of giving Extra Easy SP a go please bear in mind that this isn’t a plan suitable for everyone. It is recommended that if you are mum-to-be, breastfeeding mum, 16-17 year old member, Free2Go young member, or have diabetes or kidney problems, you are expected to continue to follow Extra Easy every day or Free2Go if applicable. Extra Easy SP is not suitable for you to follow.

If you’re a standard member and none of the above applies to you, then it is recommended that you follow Extra Easy SP for a week first. If you love the results you’re achieving, you can either:

  • continue Extra Easy SP days, building in some standard Extra Easy days to ensure you’re getting a well balanced diet


  • add another Healthy Extra ‘A’ choice each day to ensure you’re getting plenty of calcium. If you prefer not to add an extra Healthy Extra ‘A’ choice, you can have one regular size pot of yogurt instead

So how does Extra Easy SP work? It’s simple! Before I explain  I just want to point out that as a consultant I would only have recommended this plan for those members that had grasped Extra Easy fully, if you’re not familiar with the basics of the plan then you may find this one a bit too restrictive. You can read more about the basics here. If you are familiar with Extra Easy then this will be easy to understand.

When choosing to follow Extra Easy SP, you will be ensuring that all your food choices contain an S (speed) and P (protein) symbol only. You will need to look into your food optimising book and familiarise yourself with your fave S and P foods. Planning will also be key to ensure you get the results you want.

Omelette filled with cherry tomatoes, beans, spring onions & mushrooms

Omelette filled with cherry tomatoes, beans, spring onions & mushrooms

Step 1 – Free Foods (S and P Foods)

Speed foods are very low in energy density which means they have very few calories for their weight. You will need to fill at least half of your plate with Speed Free Foods. The more Speed foods you choose, the better the weight loss as you’ll be eating less calories! Look out for the Speed Free Foods in your food optimising book with the S symbol next to them on the fruit and veg pages.

Protein rich foods will satisfy your appetite and keep you feeling fuller for longer. The choices for P symbol foods include fish, lean meat and poultry, eggs, pulses and meat replacements. Look carefully over the pages 14-19 for those foods that contain the P symbol and aim to have half of your plate with these foods.

On top of all the S and P foods you can eat, you can also use all the store cupboard staples listed on page 21 of the book freely and enjoy the drinks listed on page 23.

Step 2 – Healthy Extras

You can choose:

  • two Healthy Extra ‘A’ choice


  • one Healthy Extra ‘B’ choices

To power up your weight loss even more, look out for Speed Healthy Extra choices with an ‘S’ symbol

Step 3 – Syns

Enjoy 5-10 syns as usual. These should not be used for foods that you’d have on Extra Easy. For example Pasta! We all know that plain, dried pasta is a free food but you can get varieties that contain syns (Pasta & Sauce packets or Mug Shots etc). Please don’t use your syns on those! When following Extra Easy SP 100% your food should contain S and P symbols only and your syns should not contain any other free food element. Hope this makes sense!

And that is all there is to the plan! You can get a food diary designed to help you when following Extra Easy SP from your consultant. I find the food diary is an essential tool as it will help you understand your eating pattern.

You can also get a 7 day Extra Easy SP menu from the Slimming World website to give you some ideas or use the recipe books and magazines available in group to find your own fave recipes that you can enjoy when following this plan.



Slimming World – The Basics

Please note: This post has been edited to reflect the changes SW has announced this week.

One of the questions I get asked often is how does Slimming World (SW) work? So I’m going to give you an overview of the plan. It is a very easy and simple plan to follow. If you’ve ever tried any diets in an effort to lose weight before and maybe were not as successful as you’d hoped or just want to give SW a go, please be open minded! You may be surprised at how generous the eating plan is, but it all works perfectly well together when you follow the simple 3 steps bellows.

Step 1 Free Foods

Most of the food you will be eating from will come from a list of foods called Free Foods. These are called Free Foods because they are unlimited – you can have as much or as little of these foods as you like without weighing or measuring a single thing! Sounds great, right? So what exactly are these Free Foods you may be wondering? These are foods that are naturally lower in calories and high in satiety (that means appetite satisfaction). You can fill up on these foods whenever you like as long as they’ve been cooked without any fat or oil. You will be able to find the full list of the hundreds of Free Foods available to choose from in the Food Optimising book you receive when you join a SW group. The following is just a summary of what is included:

  • Fruit – only when fresh or frozen whole (cooked, canned, dried & pureed fruits are NOT free foods)
  • Vegetables
  • Fish
  • Meat & Poultry (including some vegetable proteins)
  • Dairy products – fat free natural yogurts, low fat plain cottage cheese, quark
  • Eggs
  • Rice, pasta & grains
  • Beans, peas & lentils

Enjoy filling up on these foods any time, day or night, without any limits! Free Foods will keep you feeling fuller longer than other foods – especially protein rich foods such as lentils, eggs, meat and poultry.

To ensure a healthy balance of food, SW recommend you fill at least 1/3 of your plate with Speed Free Foods where you can and make them your first choice between meals. Speed Free Foods are even lower in calories which means it will help you lose even more weight. In your food optimising book, these food will be marked with an S. These will include fresh or frozen fruit and fresh, frozen, canned or pickled vegetables.

One main point to remember with fruit is that fruit is only a Free Food when it is fresh or frozen and whole. That means cooked, canned, dried or pureed fruit will not be a Free Food when consumed in those forms.

On top of all these Free Foods, you will also be able to use some store cupboard staples freely to add flavour and variety to your meals. Things such as herbs and spices, stock pots and cubes, soy sauce, tomato purees, fat free dressings (vinaigrette, Italian or French style dressings, must be 50kcals or less per 100ml to be Free), low calorie cooking spray (must be 1 calorie or less per spray to be Free), Marmite, Tabasco & Worcestershire sauce.

Drinks that are included in the Free Foods list include:

  • Water – still or sparkling!
  • Coffee
  • Tea (including herbal teas)
  • Sugar free/ diet fizzy drinks
  • No added sugar cordial

Swap sugar for sweetener tablets in your drinks! Any milk used in your hot drinks is not a Free Food but comes under Step 2 Healthy Extra s below.

Step 2 Healthy Extras

In addition to all the Free Foods, you can choose 2 options from the Healthy Extra choices to ensure you are getting enough calcium and fibre in your diet. You can make two choices a day from the Healthy Extras A choice and one choice a day from the Healthy Extra B choice. Again, you will find a full list of these choices in your food optimising book or the SW app.

Healthy Extra A choices are dairy foods that are a good source of calcium. These include the following:

  • 350ml skimmed milk
  • 250ml semi skimmed milk
  • 400ml unsweetened calcium-enriched plain soya drink
  • 40g reduced fat Cheddar/Emmental
  • 30g Cheddar/Double Gloucester/Red Leicester/Gouda/Emmental
  • 50g Mozzarella
  • 35g Halloumi
  • 3 Mini Babybel Light cheeses
  • 2 Laughing Cow Original Triangles

Healthy Extra B choices are foods that contain a good source of fibre. These will include many high fibre wholegrain cereals, wholemeal bread, crispbreads, cereal bars, nuts & seeds, dried, canned & cooked fruit. Below are some options you can chose from:

  • 40g unflavoured porridge oats
  • 45b Bran Flakes
  • 40g Weetabix Crispy Minis (Banana/Chocolate Chip/Fruit & Nut
  • 2 Weetabix (including flavoured varieties)
  • 2 SW Hifi Bars/Alpen Light bars
  • 4 Ryvita Dark Rye/Original
  • 60g any wholemeal bread
  • 16 almonds
  • 35 pistachio nuts
  • 2 level tbsp. sunflower seeds

You must ensure that your healthy extra choices are weighed and measured accurately. Please do not guess or estimate!

Step 3 Syns

On top of all the Free Foods and the Healthy Extra choices, you can choose ‘Syns‘ – these allow you to enjoy the foods that many diets ban! All food that isn’t Free has a Syn Value. You can enjoy between 5-15 Syns a day (your consultant will be able to help you decide the number of Syns to aim for each day). You will find Syn Values at the back of your food optimising book or on the SW app (a fab tool available for all SW members).

So now you’ve got an overview of the SW food optimising plan you can see that it is not that difficult! It is a simple, easy to follow plan that is suitable for everyone. You will get a lot more in depth information when you join a group and receive support from a knowledgeable and supportive consultant and of course great motivation and ideas from fellow slimmer’s. Remember, this additional support occurs during Image Therapy, so always aim to stay in group until the end of the session.

Hope you find this useful, if you have questions or need me to clarify anything, please comment below.



Ramadan Meal Planner v.2018

One of the best ways to be successful at food optimising during Ramadan is to plan, plan and plan. Planning is the key to success.

I already have a 7 day planner I did last year. Please click HERE to see the 2017 version of the planner. That page also has a lot of information on how to food optimise during Ramadan. I will be tweaking the planner slightly so it fits into my routine this Ramadan.

As the days are so long and the time we can eat & drink in is really really short (approx. 9pm to 2.30am), I intend on planning my days from iftar to suhoor.

So, fasting starts this Thursday. For me personally I’m changing my view of the ‘day’ – the time in which you can eat. I’ll try to explain:

The suhoor meal I will have on Thursday I will be counting the syns/healthy extras on Wednesday. That means everything I eat from iftar on Thursday night till suhoor very early on Friday morning will be counted as the same day.

You don’t have to follow my logic if it doesn’t make sense to you. Ramadan Mubarak!!!

Ramadan 2018 Meal Planner

Oat Pancakes

These pancakes are super easy to make and syn free if you’re using the oats as part of your healthy extra B choice. If you’re using your healthy extra for something else, you will need to syn these at 7 syns. This mixture makes 8 fluffy pancakes. The key to this is to use baking powder, but you don’t need a lot of it. Using too much baking powder can affect the taste of the pancakes and you’ll need to syn it at 0.5 syn per 1 tsp if you choose to use more than stated in the recipe! If you like your pancakes quite sweet, then you may need to increase the amount of sweetener used. But remember that if you’re using more than 1tbsp of sweetener, you’ll have to count it as 0.5 syn per tablespoon!

Stick to the recipe below and it will be syn free.

If you’d like to enjoy these on a SP day, you can replace the yogurt with plain natural quark. 2 or 3 tablespoons of quark should be enough.

Oat Pancakes

Oat Pancakes


Serves: 1

Syns: FREE (using oats as healthy extra B choice)

Time Taken: 45 minutes

Difficulty: Easy


  • 40g porridge oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 pot of Activia 0% vanilla yogurt (or similar)
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 1tsp sweetner
  • 1/4tsp baking powder


Blitz all ingredients together with a hand blender and let it rest for at least 30 minutes (very important to let it rest so that the mixture can thicken up).

Spray a frying pan with syn free cooking spray of your choice and add a dollop of the mixture to the pan. If you want, you can use a metal ring to make all your pancakes the same size but I don’t bother with that. As long as you’re adding roughly the same amount of mixture to the pan each time, you’ll get similar sized pancakes!

Cook the pancakes for a couple of minutes on one side before turning them and cooking them for another couple of minutes on the other side.

You can serve them with fresh chopped fruit and yogurt.

Coffee & Almond Rice Pudding

Rice pudding is one of my fave foods ever – it is a complete bowl of comfort food, I could eat it anytime! This is an adapted version from the latest Slimming World magazine issue. The original recipe was coffee and walnut but I didn’t have any walnuts at home so made it with almonds instead. My recipe is slightly higher in syns as I used dark chocolate flavoured almond milk instead of the unsweetened almond milk the original recipe states. But having said that, the extra syns are totally worth it as it makes this rice pudding even more indulging!

You will love this if you love coffee and dark chocolate, it is such a perfect combination.


Serves: 4

Syns: 5

Time Taken: just over 2 hours

Difficulty: Easy

Coffee & Almond Rice Pudding

Coffee & Almond Rice Pudding


  • 120g dried pudding rice
  • 500ml Alpro Dark Chocolate Almond Milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 tbsp. Beanies Amaretto flavour  brewed coffee
  • 3 tbsp. sweetener
  • 350ml water
  • 20g almonds, roughly chopped


Pre heat your oven to gas mark 2. Mix the pudding rice with the almond milk, vanilla extract, coffee, sweetener and water in a deep baking dish.

Cover with foil and bake for 1 1/2 hours. Stir, then re-cover with the foil and bake for a further 30-40 minutes, or until the rice is tender and creamy.

Divide the rice pudding between 4 bowls and top each with a quarter of the chopped almonds.

Chicken Tikka Pizza

A super easy cheat’s pizza ready in less than 20 minutes! This is syn free when using the wrap as healthy extra B choice and the cheese as part of healthy extra A choice. You can add any of your favourite Free Food toppings, I’ve used Haloodies Chicken Tikka slices for this pizza as they are pre-cooked already making this even easier! You can find the syn values for Haloodies products here. The chicken tikka is available in most supermarkets in the halal chilled food section.

I cut these into slices of 8 making it perfect for tasters sessions for Slimming World groups or any other party.

You can get the pizza seasoning from Aldi, I’ve recently picked it up from my local Aldi for a bargain 29p!!! If you can’t find the pizza seasoning then you can use mixed herbs instead as it works quite well too.

I know cottage cheese may sound weird on a pizza but believe me it does not taste like it once cooked. The cottage cheese gives the pizza a lovely effect, it looks like mozarella cheese once cooked!

Serves: 1

Syns: FREE

Time Taken: 20 minutes

Difficulty: Easy

Chicken Tikka Pizza

Chicken Tikka Pizza


  • 1 Weight Watchers white wrap
  • 20g light cheddar cheese
  • Tomato puree
  • Pizza seasoning or mixed herbs
  • Mushrooms
  • Haloodies chicken tikka slices
  • Cottage cheese
  • Spinach
  • Cherry tomatoes


Spread tomato puree all over the wrap and sprinkle some of the pizza seasoning. Add all of your favourite toppings and a dollop some of the cottage cheese around the pizza before sprinkling the cheddar cheese on.

Bake in a pre heated oven on gas mark 6 for around 12-15 minutes till the cheese is melted and golden.



Some people eat breakfast whilst others cannot eat anything first thing in the morning, not me though! I can eat anytime! Breakfast is one of my favourite meals of the day, having a good breakfast  sets me up for the rest of the day. I do find on the days I just grab a piece of fruit or have nothing to eat because I am in a rush, those are the days I tend to go overboard with my syns.

If you don’t enjoy eating breakfast, you don’t have to force yourself to eat it. Maybe just grabbing a piece of fruit may be enough for you.

My breakfast tends to be the same most days. If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen that the majority of the time my breakfast consists of half a pot of Alpro Plain with Coconut ‘yogurt’ mixed with 1tbsp of sweetener, layered with crushed Weetabix and fruit. Raspberries are my favourite fruit for this breakfast, sometimes I add chopped mango or kiwi and drizzle some passion fruit on top. This is my all time favourite breakfast! I have recently started having chocolate Weetabix and oh em gee it is soooo good. You can have the chocolate Weetabix as a healthy extra B choice which is a bonus! But I tend to just syn my breakfast and use my healthy extra B choice later on in the day on Slimming World hifi bars. You can prepare this breakfast the night before as you do with overnight oats or make it in the morning.

Alpro with Weetabix

Alpro with Weetabix

I do love overnight oats but don’t make it as often as I don’t like to use my healthy extra B choice first thing in the morning! If I do overnight Weetabix that is fine for me as I only ever use 1 Weetabix which is half a B choice or just 3 syns each for the plain Weetabix.

If I have the time, I do enjoy a Slimming Word friendly cooked breakfast. I have fried eggs, beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and vegetarian sausages. This is a great way of saving your healthy extra B choice for later in the day and it is a completely FREE breakfast depending on what type of sausages you use.

Another breakfast that I enjoy eating is scrambled eggs! Get the recipe for perfectly scrambled eggs every time here

Scrambled eggs with mushrooms & beans

Scrambled eggs with mushrooms & beans

Eggs are just good in any way really, I do always have boiled eggs ready in the fridge to snack on throughout the day or breakfasts when I am in a rush.

On the odd occasions I do have porridge – sometimes just cooked simply in half water half milk mixture and topped with fruit or I do baked oats. Recipe here for baked oats. Bear in mind not all porridge sachets can be used as a healthy extra B choice, do check your food optimising book or the Slimming World app for all the up to date healthy extras. This one below is a B choice and it is lovely.

Big Bowl Porridge

Big Bowl Porridge

What is your favourite breakfast? Do share in the comments below what you enjoy eating for breakfast.



Asda Shopping Haul

I don’t tend to stick to one supermarket when shopping but one of my favourite has to be Asda. I am more likely to pick up what I use most in an Asda rather than any other supermarket, so it is always my first choice followed by Aldi then Tesco!

I went to Asda this morning to pick up my essentials and this is what it looks like!

Asda Shopping Haul

Asda Shopping Haul

My favourite fruit includes raspberries, banana and pear. I am obsessed with clementines at the moment though, I’ve lost count on how many I have in a day! I picked up a melon and some strawberries and apples to vary my fruit a bit.

We eat a lot of pasta in our house. We go through a lot in a week and I tend to buy a big bag. We never run out of pasta in our house!

Passata is an absolutely essential store cupboard item for us slimmers. I use it to make pasta sauces and curries.

Eggs is another food item that I buy often! I usually make 5 or 6 boiled eggs in the morning so I can snack on them whenever I am hungry throughout the day. That amount usually lasts me a couple of days unless my youngest daughter and hubby decide to have some too! I’ve seen Asda and other supermarkets sell a couple of boiled eggs with some spinach leaves for £1 or so, I wouldn’t pay that much for it. You can get a box of 6 free range eggs for less than £1 and make your own in minutes!

I always buy packet salads for convenience as I am the only one that eats them at home and add cherry tomatoes, jalapeños and any other pickles I have in my fridge to it.

I bought leeks and celery today as I intend on making a soup with it in the next couple of days, or I might make a Homity Pie with the leeks! I am not too sure yet.

Kia Ora is our family favourite sugar free cordial, we don’t like any other brand.

It is the first time I bought best of both milk, it was on offer for £1 instead of £1.50 so why not? You can have 300ml as a healthy extra A choice. It is supposed to taste like semi skimmed milk but has a lot less fat in it. I also bought the Low Low cheese for the first time. Not sure if it a healthy extra choice but it is handy for my girls to sprinkle on their pasta!

I bought the teas for my members at groups. I am not a fan of tea, I prefer coffee. I like to offer my members a variety of drinks to choose from to enjoy in group.

We love baked beans in our house and it has to be Branston. I only buy Heinz baked beans if it’s the chilli ones.

Lastly on my shopping is the halal turkey slices. Perfect protein rich snack to enjoy anytime or as part of a meal.

What are your essentials? Comment below with your favourite items x