TThere are a heck of a lot of different diet plans out there just to show that there isn’t one perfect diet that works for every single person. Before you start any new eating plan, it’s always a good idea to do your research to make sure it’s actually beneficial. Who came up with this? Are reputable doctors and nutritionists interested? Is it something you can hold on to long-term?
These are all questions (along with many others) that the pundits at US News and World Reports focus on each year when they rank the best eating plans. One diet high on their list for 2022 is the MIND diet. The MIND diet is similar to the Mediterranean diet and is specifically designed for brain health.
Foods that anchor the MIND diet include leafy greens, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, berries, poultry, fish, and olive oil. (Again it is very similar to the Mediterranean diet.) As with transitioning to any new type of diet, it’s helpful to have a few recipes on hand to get you started. The 10 MIND Diet Recipes compiled here do just that. Read on to check them out and see how delicious food can be for brain health.
10 MIND diet recipes packed with brain-boosting benefits
1. Greek yogurt breakfast
The MIND diet favors foods high in antioxidants, which benefit the brain by helping to protect against inflammation. Berries are a food that may be small, but they burst in front of you. An easy way to increase your berry intake is to incorporate them into a yogurt bowl. This recipe offers six different ways to do that by including other nutrient-dense foods like sliced almonds, granola, and honey.
Get the recipe: Greek Yoghurt Breakfast
2. Bowl of eggs and vegetables
Eggs are a core food in the MIND diet because they’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids, a key nutrient for cognitive health. Here, they’re paired with veggies, cauliflower, avocado, and olive oil—another great source of brain-supporting healthy fats.
Get the recipe: Bowl of Eggs and Vegetables
3. Breakfast tacos with salmon, egg and avocado
This breakfast has not one, but not two three Powerhouse sources of healthy fats. Egg, avocado, and salmon are all great sources of the brain-boosting nutrient. This recipe shows how to combine them to create a hearty breakfast that’s ready in just 15 minutes.
Get the recipe: Salmon, Egg, and Avocado Breakfast Tacos
4. Kale Kimchi Salad
As with most healthy eating plans, greens are an important part of the MIND diet. This salad recipe pairs kale with kimchi—packed with gut-healthy probiotics, and anything that’s good for the gut also directly benefits the brain. Also in this salad are sweet potatoes, olive oil, avocado, chickpeas, pumpkin seeds and fennel.
Get the recipe: Kale Kimchi Salad
5. Tuscan White Bean Soup
Unless you’re a big salad-for-lunch type, there’s always soup! Beans are a protein staple on the MIND diet, and here they’re used to make a Tuscan white bean soup full of antioxidant-rich veggies. The recipe also calls for plenty of garlic, which has been shown to help with memory function.
Get the recipe: Tuscan White Bean Soup
6. Carrot Soup
Another soup recipe packed with brain-boosting nutrients is this carrot soup. In addition to the main vegetables (which are rich in vitamin C), it consists of garlic, olive oil, smoked Spanish peppers, gloves and vegetable broth. Add chickpeas, beans, or tofu for protein, and also add any veggies you have on hand.
7. Black-Eyed Pea Salad
Every single ingredient in this high-protein salad supports the brain in some way. The black-eyed peas, veggies, and spices are all packed with antioxidants and help prevent chronic inflammation. Like many of the recipes on this list, it also calls for garlic and olive oil — two cognitive health superstars.
Get the recipe: Black Eyed Peas Salad
8. One-Pot Vegetable Dal
Turmeric and ginger are known to support the brain by protecting against inflammation, and they are the key spices in this nourishing dal. Use them to add tons of flavor to lentils and the veggies of your choice.
9. Black bean brownies
Yes, your dessert can support your cognitive health 100 percent. The black beans and cocoa used to make these brownies are both great sources of antioxidants. This recipe is also vegan, gluten-free, and nut-free, so eaters of all kinds can enjoy it.
10. Olive Oil Brownies
Another way to make brownies that is MIND-approved is to use eggs, olive oil, and dark chocolate — three foods you know by now are hugely beneficial. This recipe makes them perfectly rich and chewy.
Get the recipe: Olive Oil Brownies
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