Weeknight dinners

Gut Feeling

FODMAP Recipes
These five light and sumptuous dishes promise satisfaction for both body and mind, offering dinner inspiration that will see you through to the weekend.

or those living with a sensitive gut or IBS, dinnertime can be even more of a chore than usual. Thanks to Lorraine Maher and Paula McGee, authors of the new cookbook Gut Feeling, we here at ICA Home & Living are able to bring you five quick and easy dinner receipes that will undoubtedly set your tastebuds alight, without disturbing the  rhythm of your body – or your evening plans! These low FODMAP meals are increasingly recognised as the primary management of IBS and result in a significant reduction of symptoms in over 70% of people who try it. Proving that healthy doesn’t have to be boring, Gut Feeling offers a tantalising selection of 100 dishes that includes healthy seafood, fresh herbs and an assortment of zesty ingredients, ensuring you won’t be stuck for excitement in the kitchen.

  • Portion size: 498g 
  • Kcals: 500
  • Fat: 34g
  • Saturated fat: 6.4g 
  • Carbs: 11.6g
  • Sugar: 7.3g 
  • Fibre: 5.1g
  • Protein: 36.3g
    Salt: 4.5g
  • Allergens: Fish
Cajun Spiced Salmon

Salmon is an oily fish containing high-quality protein, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids. The coriander seeds give the dish a lemony, citrus flavour when crushed due to the presence of terpenes. It’s recommended to eat at least one serving of oily fish each week for general health.

2 x 150g salmon fillets, skin on
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp Cajun spice (or less if you like)
260g/2 ripe plum tomatoes, diced finely
20g/4 spring onions green part only), sliced
handful of fresh coriander leaves and fresh basil leaves
1 tsp crushed coriander seeds
juice of 1 lemon
salt and freshly ground black pepper
100g baby spinach
40g rocket
30g bean sprouts, to garnish (optional)
lemon wedges, to serve

Brush the salmon fillets with a little of the olive oil and sprinkle them with the Cajun spice. Set aside. To make the dressing, combine the diced tomatoes, spring onions, fresh herbs and crushed coriander seeds with the remaining olive oil, half the lemon juice and some salt and pepper in a bowl. Set aside. Heat a non-stick frying pan set over a medium heat. Add the salmon and cook for about 4 minutes on each side, taking care not to burn the spices. Transfer to a plate. While the salmon is resting, wilt down the spinach in a separate hot pan with the remaining lemon juice. Place the salmon on a bed of spinach and rocket. Spoon over the tomato dressing and garnish with the bean sprouts, if using. Serve with lemon wedges on the side.

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Seekh Kebabs with Crunchy Radish and Tomato Salad

A popular Middle Eastern dish. The accompanying salad perfectly complements and balances this simple-to-cook dish.

500g minced beef or lamb
20g/4 spring onions (green part only), finely chopped
1 small green chilli, deseeded and finely chopped (if tolerated)
2cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp paprika
salt and freshly ground black pepper
lime wedges, to serve
50g Greek yogurt, to serve

For the salad:
300g/½ cucumber, chopped into cubes
260g/2 ripe tomatoes, chopped
34g/5 radishes, quartered
4g/1 handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
1 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
½ tsp caster sugar or maple syrup

Put the mince in a large bowl and add the chopped spring onions, chilli (if using), ginger, garam masala, paprika, salt and pepper and mix well. Set aside to let the spices infuse the meat for at least 20 minutes, but all day is fine too. Place all the salad ingredients in a large bowl and toss together. Cover the bowl with cling film and refrigerate until required. Taste and adjust the seasoning before serving. Preheat the grill to high and lightly grease the grill rack. Soak 12 wooden skewers in cold water for 15 minutes. Divide the meat mixture into 12 equal oval-shaped portions. Wet your hands and shape each portion around a skewer, smoothing over the seam. Place the skewers under the grill and cook for 10–15 minutes, turning occasionally, until the meat is cooked through. Serve the hot kebabs with the chilled salad, lime wedges and a small bowl of Greek yogurt on the side.

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  • Portion size: 560g 
  • Kcals: 450 
  • Fat: 15.8g 
  • Saturated fat: 5.7g 
  • Carbs: 40g 
  • Sugar: 1g 
  • Fibre: 1.5g 
  • Protein: 27g
  • Salt: 2g 
  • Allergens: Celery, crustaceans, milk, sulphites
Prawn Risotto with Asparagus

This risotto is light yet creamy. Make sure you use FODMAP-friendly stock and keep to the recommended portion size of asparagus (1 spear per serving) and celery (½ stick per serving).

600ml homemade low FODMAP chicken stock (opposite)
1 tbsp butter
2 tsp garlic-infused oil
pinch of asafoetida powder
60g/1 celery stick, finely diced
100g Arborio rice
100ml dry white wine
200g large cooked peeled prawns
20g/2 asparagus spears, steamed and diced
1 tbsp grated lemon zest
1 tbsp chopped fresh chives
freshly ground black pepper

Place the stock in a saucepan and keep on a low heat while you cook the risotto. Heat the butter and garlic-infused oil in a separate large saucepan set over a low heat. Add the asafoetida powder, followed by the diced celery, and cook slowly for about 5 minutes, until soft. Add the rice and raise the heat to medium. Stir for 1–2 minutes, until the grains look toasted but not browned. Add the wine and stir until it has been absorbed into the rice, then start adding the stock one ladle at a time, stirring frequently. Wait until it has all been absorbed into the rice before adding the next ladleful of stock. It should take 15–20 minutes to cook the rice. The ideal risotto is soft but still has a bite. Use extra boiling water if you run out of stock.  Five minutes before you feel it’s cooked, stir in the prawns, asparagus and lemon zest and continue to cook for 5 minutes, stirring gently.  Remove from the heat when the risotto is done and stir in the chives and a pinch of freshly ground black pepper. Serve straight away.

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  • Portion size: 308g
  • Kcals: 519
  • Fat: 45g
  • Saturated fat: 8.3g
  • Carbs: 4.8g
  • Sugar: 4.3g
  • Fibre: 2.5g
  • Protein: 23g 
  • Salt: 1.5g 
  • Allergens: Mustard,fish, sulphites
Fillet Steak with Slow-Cooked Tomatoes, Salsa Verde and Watercress

The fillet is probably the nicest and most expensive cut of beef. It’s very lean and tender due to the short fibres in the meat. Salsa verde not only contains lots of vitamins, it also bursts with freshness from the herbs and savoury anchovies. With the slow-cooked tomatoes and watercress salad, this is a recipe that will have you looking forward to steak night. Remember to stick to no more than 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar per sitting.

4 x 100g fillet steaks

For the slow-cooked tomatoes:
520g/4 vine-ripened tomatoes or 16 cherry tomatoes
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
splash of balsamic vinegar
splash of olive oil
pinch of caster sugar
salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the salsa verde:
2 tsp white wine vinegar
4–5 fresh basil sprigs, leaves only
handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley
6g/2 tinned anchovy fillets, drained and finely chopped
3 tsp capers
100ml garlic-infused olive oil

For the watercress salad:
100g watercress
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 120°C. To prepare the slow-cooked tomatoes, combine the thyme, vinegar, oil, sugar and seasoning and dip the tomatoes (still on the vine) into the mix, coating them completely. Place on a baking tray and gently roast them in the oven for 15–20 minutes. Heat a large frying pan over a high heat until it’s smoking hot, then brush with olive oil. Season one side of the steak and put it in the hot pan, seasoned side down. Cook for 1–2 minutes, until nicely browned. Just before turning it over, season the raw side and brown for 1–2 minutes more. Turn down the heat and cook to your liking. This can take another minute on each side for rare, 2–3 minutes for medium and 4–5 minutes for well done.  To make the salsa verde, pour the vinegar into a blender with the basil leaves, parsley, anchovies and capers and blend to a purée. With the motor still running, gradually add just enough of the olive oil to give a sauce-like consistency. To make the watercress salad, simply toss all the ingredients together and season to taste. To serve the steaks, place the slow-cooked tomatoes on the side and spoon the salsa verde over the steak. Add the watercress salad on the side.

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  • Portion size: 497g
  • Kcals: 442
  • Fat: 11.2g
  • Saturated fat: 4.4g
  • Carbs: 5.9g
  • Sugar: 12.8g
  • Fibre: 6.3g 
  • Protein: 34g
  • Salt: 0.9g
  • Allergens: Gluten, milk, may contain soya, may contain sesame
Mexican Chicken Fajitas

This colourful, satisfying Mexican favourite never disappoints and is great for feeding a group, no matter what age. Corn and gluten-free tortillas, as alternatives to wheat-based tortillas, are widely available.

1 tbsp rapeseed oil
pinch of asafoetida powder
430g/4 small chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
160g/1 yellow pepper, cut into strips
160g/1 red pepper, cut into strips
160g/1 green pepper, cut into strips

For the spice mix:
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp dried oregano
½ tsp chilli powder (optional)

For the salsa:
520g/4 ripe plum tomatoes, finely chopped
20g/4 spring onions (green part only), finely sliced
½ fresh chilli, deseeded and chopped (optional)
handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped
juice of 1 lime
freshly ground black pepper

To serve:
320g/8 mini corn tortillas
100g iceberg lettuce, shredded
40g grated Cheddar
50g Greek yogurt or low-fat sour cream (optional)
lime wedges

For the spice mix, combine all the spices together in a small bowl and set aside. To make the salsa, combine all the ingredients in a separate bowl and set aside. Heat the rapeseed oil in a pan set over a medium–high heat. Add the pinch of asafoetida powder and cook for about 30 seconds before adding the chicken pieces. Cook for 3–4 minutes, then add the pepper strips and spice mix and continue cooking for another 3–4 minutes, until the chicken is turning golden brown and is cooked through. Meanwhile, warm the tortillas in the oven or microwave as per the packet instructions. Assemble the fajitas by placing some shredded lettuce, a spoonful of the chicken mix, a spoonful of salsa, a sprinkle of grated cheese and a dollop of yogurt on each warm tortilla. Wrap up tightly and serve with lime wedges on the side.

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Core shopping list: Fresh foods


  • SALADS Allowed salad veg (tomatoes, cucumber, beansprouts, chives, endive, rocket, iceberg lettuce, spinach leaves, radishes, red, orange, yellow and green peppers)
  • VEG Allowed fresh vegetables for roasting and cooking (aubergines, carrots, courgettes, parsnips, olives, swedes/turnips and yams)
  • FRUIT Allowed fruits (citrus: limes, oranges, lemons; berries: blueberries, strawberries, raspberries; everyday fruits: bananas, grapes, kiwi, rhubarb, honeydew and cantaloupe melons; exotic fruits: papaya, pineapple, passion fruit)
  • DAIRY ALTERNATIVES Lactose-free dairy or suitable rice or soya alternatives (watch out for apple juice sweetener)
  • CHEESE Stick to cheese such as feta, Camembert, Brie, goats’ cheese, mozzarella, Edam, Cheddar or a little blue cheese
  • HERBS Fresh herbs (basil, coriander, parsley, rosemary, thyme, green part of spring onion)
  • Poultry (chicken, turkey) and eggs
  • MEAT Lean cuts of pork, lamb and beef
  • FISH All white fish, shellfish and oily fish (salmon, tuna, sardines, trout, mackerel)

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About the authors
Paula Mee, BSc, Dip Dietetics, MSc in Health Sciences, MINDI is a state registered dietitian. She recently completed low FODMAP training in Kings College, London. She has a dietetic clinic in Blackrock and her own nutrition consultancy (www.paulamee.com). She contributes regularly to national TV, radio and print media. She is the co-author of Your Middle Years: Love Them. Live Them. Own Them. Lorraine MaherBSc Human Nutrition, MSc Dietetics, MINDI has had an eclectic career in nutrition and dietetics over the past 15 years. She is dedicated to helping people achieve the right diet for them, has a particular interest in the management of IBS and completed her Low FODMAP training in King’s College London in 2013. She offers virtual dietetic consultations (www.reallifenutrition.ie) to help clients successfully implement this complex diet and continually develops recipes to make the journey easier.