Can you think of a better way to boost your mood than with food? Just think about it: how many times were you feeling cranky, but it turned out you were just hungry? Yes, your favorite food can always make you feel better when you’re having a bad day.
But what if we told you that certain foods are scientifically proven to boost your mood? That’s right! While comfort meals are important, we want to acknowledge ingredients that have actual physical effects on our brains and bodies.
Some of these ingredients are:
- Fatty fish
- Dark chocolate
- Nuts and seeds
- Beans and lentils
While we know your comfort food may not be baked beans, did you ever notice that coffee helps you feel more energized? There’s a good reason for that, and it’s the fact that caffeine acts as a central nervous system stimulant. Besides that, it also helps excite your brain, making you more alert.
Each of the ingredients we’ve mentioned has a way of positively affecting us, and we’ve prepared recipes containing some of them. Eager to find your new favorite mood booster? Read on!
The first mood booster is your new favorite Italian seafood stew — cioppino! The seafood included is packed with omega-3 fatty acid guaranteed to make you feel better every time. Also, a stew made from seafood, wine, and tomatoes is always a good comfort meal in our books.
Without further ado, here’s the ingredients list for the cioppino recipe:
- Olive oil
- 1 chopped onion
- 3 chopped shallots
- 1 large thinly sliced fennel bulb
- 4 finely chopped garlic cloves
- ¾ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- ½ cup Burgundy Wine Tomato Sauce
- 1 can diced tomatoes in juice
- 5 cups fish stock
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 ½ cups dry white wine
- Manila clams, mussels, large shrimp (cleaned), 1 pound each
- 1 ½ pounds salmon cut into chunks
Don’t let the long list of ingredients frighten you because this meal is a one-pot wonder. You’ve read that right — all you’ll need is a large pot, an hour and a half of your time, and six people to serve. There are the steps:
- Heat up a drizzle of olive oil in a large pot on medium heat. Then add onion, shallots, fennel, and salt, and saute for about 10 minutes. Stir garlic and red pepper flakes in and saute for another 2 minutes.
- Next, add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes with juice, wine, fish stock, and a bay leaf. Cover and cook until simmering, then reduce the heat and let simmer for another 30 minutes.
- Add the clams and mussels next, and cook until they start opening. This is the perfect time to toss in the shrimp and fish and simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Stir occasionally and wait for clams and mussels to open completely. Discard any that remained closed.
- Season the stew to taste, serve, and enjoy!
Crumbl Peanut Butter Cookies
Let’s talk about our ultimate copycat recipe — Crumbl peanut butter cookies. But the ‘copycat’ part shouldn’t alarm you because these cookies will be as good as the original (if not better, we dare say).
The first thing you should know is that this is a peanut butter lover’s dream. Also, cookies are comfort food for many people! But that’s not the only thing about them that will boost your mood. They’re made from peanut butter, made from peanuts, which is… a nut! And if you remember the list of foods scientifically proven to boost your mood, nuts are definitely on there.
But enough chatter, here are the ingredients:
- 1 cup softened salted butter
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 eggs
- 3 ¼ cups AP flour
- ¾ brown sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups creamy peanut butter
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ¾ tsp salt
Want to know what you’ll need for this Crumbl peanut butter cookie recipe besides lots of peanut butter? A mixer, baking sheet, and parchment paper. Yes, the steps will be as simple as you’d imagine. They’re as follows:
- Preheat the oven to 350℉.
- Add butter, 1 cup white sugar, and brown sugar. Mix until creamy.
- Scrape the bowl, add eggs, vanilla extract, and 1 cup of peanut butter. Combine well!
- Finally, mix flour, baking soda, and salt in.
- Create even dough balls and press with your thumb to create a little pocket. Spoon a bit of the remaining peanut butter in, then close the cookie around it.
- Roll each ball in the remaining white sugar, and flatten them slightly.
- Bake for about 20 minutes, and let cool for another 15 before serving them warm!
What could boost your mood and help you unwind at the end of a long week? The perfect espresso martini.
Coffee is our scientific mood booster for this recipe, and you can make this drink in under 3 minutes. Ready to start the clock? These are the ingredients:
- 2 oz vodka
- ½ oz coffee liqueur
- 1 oz espresso, brewed from the USA Strong Blend
- ½ oz simple syrup
And you know what? This espresso martini recipe is so easy that you don’t even need to follow any steps. Simply add all ingredients to a shaker filled with ice, and shake until well-chilled. Serve in a martini glass and garnish with a few coffee beans.
Boost Your Mood With Fresh Food
Unfortunately, this is where the list of our mood booster recipes ends, but that doesn’t mean the end of your search for more. What you can do is pick your favorite ingredient from our list of mood boosters and start incorporating it into your diet. This won’t only improve your mood but help you develop more cooking skills and broaden your recipe portfolio.
As always, if you’re ever looking for more, check out our other recipe blogs and find more locally sourced ingredients on our Local Food Market. Happy cooking!