Spring Cleanse Recipes

After a long day leading a yoga teacher training I often find that doing kitchen sadhana is my favourite way in which to ground myself (and avoid the computer work that is piling up!). Since it is spring time and many folks are cleansing I thought I’d share some of the meals I’ve been making lately as I move through my own cleanse. I feel strongly that a cleanse should not make you feel deprived, but rather a cleanse can be an opportunity to celebrate a fresh new season through eating seasonal foods.  These dishes all utilize the tastes that are best for the spring time diet and assist the body in naturally releasing excess heaviness and congestion. Give them a try and let me know how it goes!
*if you want to learn more about spring wisdom practices check out my free video series here

Spring Kitchari with Dandelion & Collard Greens

  • 2/3 cup of soaked mung beans                       
  • 2 cups of white or brown basmati rice
  • 1 leek chopped fine
  • 1 cup of chopped dandelion leaves
  • 1 cup of chopped collard greens or kale
  • 2 Tbs ghee or coconut oil
  • 1-2 Tbs of spring masala mix (see below)
  • 1 Tbs fresh grated turmeric root
  • 1 Tbs fresh grated ginger root
  1. Soak the mung beans overnight, rinse and drain
  2. Rinse the rice well
  3. Heat the ghee or coconut oil in a heavy bottomed pan and add the masala mix, the leeks, and the fresh grated ginger and turmeric, stir till leeks are soft and well coated with spices
  4. Add the rinsed rice and beans, stir well, and add 4-5 cups of water depending on how soft you like your kitchari to be (more water= soupier easier to digest kitchari)
  5. Bring to a boil, stir once, add the chopped greens, cover and simmer on low until the water has dissolved
  6. Remove from heat, add salt and pepper to taste, eat with gratitude while watching the sunset

Spring Masala Blend 

  • 2 Tbs coriander seeds                 
  • 2 Tbs cumin seeds
  • 1 Tbs fenugreek seeds
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 Tbs dried sage leaves
  • 1 Tbs ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tbs ground turmeric
  • 1 Tbs powdered ginger
  • ½ tsp cayenne powder
  1. Dry roast the seeds & cloves in a heavy-bottomed pan until fragrant. Watch carefully and don’t let them burn.  Grind seeds, cloves, and sage leaves with a mortar and pestle, or a spice grinder.
  2. Lightly roast the powdered herbs in the same heavy bottomed pan, being careful not to burn them.
  3. Mix everything together until well combined.
  4. Store in a glass jar and use in all your favorite spring soups and one pot meals.

Spring Cleanse Morning Juice

Too much juicing can weaken digestion during the spring season so be mindful and avoid having more than one juice per day, especially if you are feeling cold or your digestion is weak.

  • ½ bulb of fresh fennel               
  • 2-3 pieces of celery
  • 1 green apple
  • ½ cucumber
  • 1 big handful of nettle leaves
  • 1 big handful of parsley
  • ½ a lime
  • 1 sprig of fresh mint
  • 1 inch of fresh ginger root
  1. Run all ingredients through a juicer starting with the nettle, parsley, mint, and ginger, followed by the juicier fruit and vegetables for best results

Spring Cleanse Sweet Green Smoothie

Like juicing, having too many smoothies can weaken digestion during the spring season. They can also increase Kapha dosha as they are both heavy and cold so again be mindful. I generally only have a smoothie as a morning meal after I have done some kind of vigorous and heating physical exercise.

  • 1 big handful of fresh nettle leaves              
  • 1 big handful parsley
  • 1 big handful of cilantro
  • 1 banana
  • ½ pear
  • 1-2 Tbs cacao nibs
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • 2 cups of fresh pumpkin & hemp seed milk
  • 1 scoop of fave protein powder or 1-2 tbsp of goat yogurt
  1. Blend all ingredients in a blender, adding water as desired to get a consistency you enjoy
  2. Pour into a large jar and enjoy when you are craving a sweeter breakfast smoothie or light meal

Pumpkin & Hemp Seed Milk                    

  • 2 big handfuls of pumpkin seeds (I like the large green Styrian pumpkin seeds)
  • ½ cup of hemp hearts (hemp seeds without hulls)
  • 1 tsp vanilla powder or extract
  • pinch of salt
  • water as needed
  1. Soak the pumpkin seeds for a few hours in cold water, rinse and drain
  2. Add pumpkin seeds and hemp hearts to the blender with a pinch of salt, and add enough water to just cover
  3. Blend until the seeds are well ground, and then add water slowly till your blender is full and the milk is frothy
  4. Strain through a couple layers of fine cheesecloth or a nut milk bag, save the pulp to make raw cookies with!
  5. Pour into a large glass jar and store in the fridge

Pumpkin Seed & Hemp Heart Raw Chocolate Cookies

(okay I know these aren’t really spring cleansing fare but they are so good !)

  • pumpkin seed & hemp heart pulp from making seed milk
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 2/3 cup mashed ripe bananas
  • ¾ cup of cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp mint extract
  • ½ cup of cacao nibs
  1. Blend the coconut oil, cocoa powder, mint essence, and bananas in a food processor until well mixed
  2. Add the seed pulp and the cocoa nibs and pulse a couple times till combined
  3. Spoon onto a dehydrator tray in small balls and dehydrate or oven at 110 degrees for 4-6 hours or until dry on the bottom
  4. Enjoy!!