Bariatric Friendly Recipes From The Food Nest NZ!

I have a collaboration post for you today! Ashleigh blogs over on The Food Nest NZ and her Instagram is a must follow account for drool worthy food related pics! Go and check her blog out and you might find a guest post from me!

My name is Ashleigh, I’m 27,  I live in Christchurch, NZ – and I am addicted to cooking!

How did I get here? Well I started sharing my food photos via Instagram in late 2014, after much persuasion from a friend who thought my cooking was worth sharing with the world! After about a year of posting my “foodgrams” anonymously – I then started my blog in December 2015, so I could post my recipes and the odd occasional rant, for everyone to see and hopefully enjoy.

I like to keep my cooking simple, affordable, and as healthy as possible. I live a gluten free lifestyle for health reasons (IBS means I can only absorb a tiny amount at a time, and sometimes it’s safer that I don’t at all) and I understand how hard it can be to eat what we love, without repercussions. However – not all my recipes are Gluten Free –  my friends and family all maintain a normal diet – so I cater to them too!

In a nut shell – TheFoodNestNZ is all about trying to achieve the best food that can be made, on a minimal budget, that’s easy for anyone to make and everyone to enjoy.

Here are Ashleigh’s recipes!

Pork Meatballs with Bok Choy


500 grams of Pork Mince

1 Teaspoon of each of the following: Cumin, Ginger, Garlic, Chilli Powder, Paprika, fresh basil

Half an onion – finely diced

1 egg

Pork Meatballs

Photo courtesy of The Food Nest NZ

In a large bowl combine all of the ingredients.

Roll into small to medium sized balls and pan fry until brown.

Place in the oven at 180 degrees to finish cooking them all the way through. If you are cooking these with a sauce you can elave them in the pan and cover in the sauce and simmer.

Melissa’s notes: I omitted the chilli from the meatballs since I can’t handle anything that’s too spicy. I did put a Thai Green Curry Sauce with the meatballs but it was really spicy so next time will make another one Ashleigh suggested with Coconut cream, lime juice, chilli and tomatoes which I will try next time but again omitting the chilli. My husband and I loved these meatbals and I will be making them again soon!


This was my attempt at the Pork Meatballs and Bok Choy!

Bok Choy

1 Bok Choy (or 2 baby Bok Choy)

Spring Onion

3 Cloves of Garlic

Fresh Ginger – Grated (However much you please)

Fresh Chives

Bok Choy

Photo courtesy of The Food Nest NZ

Put all the ingredients in a pan and lightly saute. Place a lid on top for 5-6 minutes to create steam in the pan to cook everything all the way through.

Gluten Free Beef Olives

(The amounts in this recipe vary according to how many you are making)


Blend Mushroom (I subsituted Courgette since I can’t stand mushrooms), onion, salami or bacon (I used bacon), chilli, garlic and basil together.


This was after I had blended all the bits together.

Place stuffing into beef schnitzel and oll. Use a toothpick at each end to hold them together. Lightly pan fry and then transfer in the oven to finish.

Beef Olives

Photo courtesy of The Food Nest NZ

Melissa’s notes: I again omitted the chilli and got a basic pasta sauce to pour on top for when I transferred them to the oven. I then sprinkled some cheese and breadcrumbs (although normal breadcrumbs would not make them gluten free anymore!) on top and baked them for a while to make sure they were cooked through. The sauce made sure these weren’t dry and I was easily able to get them down. I cut the pieces of schnitzel in half and got four beef olives out of two pieces of schnitzel. These were really yummy too, so simple to make but really tasty and yummy!


This was my attempt at the Beef Olives!

Do you think you might give either of these recipes a go? What one will you try first? Comment below and let me know what you think of them, especially if you get around to making them I’d love to know if you will be adding these to your repertoire.

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There are 12 comments for this article
  1. Gemma at 8:35 am

    Ooh, these look great! I’m one day from the end of liquid diet (3weeks post-op) and am surprised to find that I don’t mind cooking for my partner or him eating near me. I enjoy the smells and I’m as interested as ever in reading through recipes online – especially things that are small, delicious and full of protein. Will save these 2 up for when I can have them 🙂

    • Melissa Peaks Author at 6:05 pm

      I didn’t mind cooking for others soon after my surgery either. Less than two weeks after mine I made my husband a huge delicious looking birthday cake and didn’t have a bite. You must let me know what you think of these recipes when you’re able to eat stuff like this again!

  2. Angela at 9:42 pm

    I wanted to comment this morning but it was so hard at work. I like how easy both recipes seem to be and with not much ingredients too. It sounds doable for someone like me. I would love the try the beef olives one day and I like how you made your spin on it. 🙂

  3. Carolyn at 8:34 pm

    They look so yummy!! I cannot have chilli either and do not like mushrooms…lol…am so going to try these recipes..thank you!!!

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