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How to Cultivate a Healthy Gut Microbiome + A Recipe for Baklava Butter

You may have heard that a healthy gut microbiome is important not only for digestive health, but for overall physical and mental health as well. In this post I’ll show you how to cultivate a healthy gut microbiome with delicious foods from the book, Wild Mediterranean, plus I’ll share one of my favorite belly friendly recipes for Baklava Butter!

How to Cultivate a Healthy Gut Microbiome with a Wild Mediterranean Diet | Tips + a Recipe & Cookbook ReviewPhoto Credit: Brooke Lark of Cheeky Kitchen

Disclosure: I received a free copy of Wild Mediterranean by Stella Metsovas which I am sharing with you. I was not compensated to write this post. There are affiliate links in the post for products I personally use and recommend. If you purchase any of these products, I may receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you, which helps support the cost of running this blog. Thank you so much for your support!

Your gut microbiome in health and disease…

Although there is still SO much to be learned about the role a healthy gut microbiome plays in health and disease, there is emerging evidence linking the gut microbiome to:

Indeed, we are really just at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to exploring all the potential health benefits that come from having a healthy gut microbiome, so stay tuned for more research. In the meantime, it’s a great idea to feed our guts good food that THEY love, and that WE love too!

How to Cultivate a Healthy Gut Microbiome

As many of you may know, I’m a huge fan of the Mediterranean diet and lifestyle, not only for my own health, but as a general starting point for my clients as well.

Although, as with diet, there is no “one size fits all” approach when it comes to cultivating a healthy gut microbiome, Stella Metsovas details “how a simpler approach to diet and and living will nourish your body and feed your soul” in her gorgeous book, Wild Mediterranean: The Age-Old, Science-New Plan For A Healthy Gut, With Food You Can Trust.

Wild Mediterranean : The Age-Old, Science-new Plan for a healthy Gut, With Food You Can Trust by Stella MetsovasPhoto Credit: Hugh Forte

Not only does the book provide you with over 40 delicious wild Mediterranean inspired recipes to help you cultivate a healthy gut microbiome {like the amazing Baklava Butter recipe I’m sharing with you today}, but also tips on how to live a wild lifestyle. Just a few of these include…

  • Laugh {So true!}
  • Tend a Garden {On my bucket list!}
  • Avoid Toxic People {Hallelujah!}
  • Say “no” to Guilt {Another one I’m working on!}
  • And, so many more…

Then there’s the food, oh, the glorious food!!!

What to Eat on a Healthy Gut Microbiome Diet

The thing I love most about Wild Mediterranean, is that the recipes are simple, accessible, and easy to make, and include a wide variety of nutrient rich whole foods that taste delicious, and will help you cultivate your own healthy gut microbiome. Just a few of these foods include…

  • Sweet potatoes
  • Kefir
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Berries
  • Nuts & Seeds
  • Roast Turkey
  • Salmon
  • Leafy Greens
  • Oats

If you’ve read my post on the MIND Diet & brain health, you may have noticed that many of these delicious foods are also MIND Diet friendly foods too, like this scrumptious gut friendly Baklavah Butter recipe I’m sharing with you today. Finally, right!?

Word of caution.

This Baklava Butter, is ever so slightly addictive. The key to keeping it healthy?

Portion control.

Try it straight off the spoon {2 tablespoons is ~ 1 serving}, on top of Greek yogurt, or blended into a smoothie~I made one this morning with 1 banana, kefir, soy milk, and a generous scoop of Baklava Butter, and it kept me full all morning. Yum!!!

This easy, homemade Baklava Butter is a deliciously healthy indulgence. Even better, it takes less than 10 minutes to make & stores well in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Eat it straight off the spoon, or add it to yogurt or oatmeal, or spread it over whole grain gluten free toast for a nourishing breakfast or snack.Photo Credit: Hugh Forte

This easy, homemade Baklava Butter is a deliciously healthy indulgence. Even better, it takes less than 10 minutes to make & stores well in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Eat it straight off the spoon, or add it to yogurt or oatmeal, or spread it over whole grain gluten free toast for a nourishing breakfast or snack.

Baklava Butter

Yes, you read that right: The nutty, honey-sweetened decadence of Greece’s most famous dessert—without all the layers of buttered phyllo dough and heavy syrup. By folding all the ingredients into softened “butter,” you get a spreadable guilty pleasure to enjoy on sprouted-grain toast, stirred into yogurt, or stuffed into dates. After all, it’s okay to treat yourself once in a while. It’s all about balance! This makes quite a bit and should be used within 10 days, so consider sharing some as a gift!
Wild Bonus: Healthy fats plus nut-derived fiber are essential building blocks for balanced gut health.
5 from 2 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients

  • cups walnuts
  • 1/2 cup roasted almonds
  • 1/3 cups pistachios
  • 1/2 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup organic honey
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • In a food processor, combine the walnuts, almonds, and pistachios. Pulse until coarsely ground or finely chopped—be careful not to over process. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the almond meal.
  • In a small pot, combine the honey, sugar, cinnamon, and salt with 2 tablespoons of water. Bring to a gentle simmer over low heat, then remove from the heat and add directly to the bowl with the nut mixture. Add the olive oil and vanilla extract and mix well.
  • Transfer the butter to clean glass jar, refrigerate, and use within a week.

Notes

  1. LOW FODMAP OPTION: Low FODMAP-Substitute honey w/ maple syrup & omit pistachio nuts, or substitute with your favorite low FODMAP nut.
  2. VEGAN OPTION: Substitute honey with maple syrup.
  3. I made this with macadamia nut oil which is also rich in healthy monounsaturated fats, like olive oil, and it was delicious!

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 235kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Sodium: 41mg | Potassium: 152mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin C: 0.8mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 1.1mg
EA Stewart, RD | Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine Mediterranean
Diet Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Low FODMAP Option, Vegan Option, Vegetarian
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Note: If you’re doing the elimination phase of a Low FODMAP diet, while not all of the recipes in Wild Mediterranean are low FODMAP, many of them are, or can be adapted to a low FODMAP diet. As you move to the challenge phase of the diet, you may find you are able to tolerate some of these “wild foods” that are beneficial to gut health, in small to moderate amounts. Please get in touch with me if you have any questions or would like to set up a nutrition coaching session!

And, just to make you a little hungrier, here are a few more of the recipes you’ll find in Wild Mediterranean…

“Root-Down” Salad

"Root-Down" Salad from Wild Mediterranean

I made this raw root vegetable salad with thinly sliced beets & carrots, sliced almonds, orange vinaigrette, and a generous sprinkle of Manchego cheese. Oh, my goodness, it was SO delicious, and super easy to make too!

More Healthy Gut Microbiome Recipes I Can’t Wait to Make from Wild Mediterranean…

Recipes from Wild Mediterranean by Stella Metsovas

Photo Credits: Hugh Forte

  • Not-Your-Typical Greek Salad w/ cucumber, walnuts, rice, cracked pepper, egg, and feta cheese.
  • Briam w/ potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, white wine, and olive oil.
  • Fava with Roasted Vegetables and olive oil, yellow split peas, lemon juice, and garlic
  • Roast Chicken, Four Ways: Italian, Greek, Provencal, and Spanish

If you’re inspired to “go wild” with your diet & start cultivating a healthy gut microbiome, you can purchase a copy of the book on Amazon: Wild Mediterranean by Stella Metsovas

Additional Books on Gut Health & The Microbiome I Highly Recommend…

Let’s Chat!

Have you read any books or articles on the gut microbiome? Any I haven’t mentioned that you’d like to share? Have you changed your diet after learning about a healthy gut microbiome? What are your favorite belly friendly foods???

If you enjoyed this post & recipe I’d love for you to share it! Thanks so much for your support in helping me spread the word that healthy IS delicious!

Does your diet need a DELICIOUS re-boot? Click here to learn more about my nutrition coaching & digestive wellness services and healthy cooking classes!

Let’s connect!

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6 thoughts on “How to Cultivate a Healthy Gut Microbiome + A Recipe for Baklava Butter”

  1. Thank you for this recipe. My family loves baklava butter! I’m enjoying reading the information and recipes you are sharing about a healthy microbiome. Now off to print Pre and probiotic foods list!

    1. Hi Kristina! You’re most welcome 🙂 I’m so glad to hear you’re enjoying the recipes and information on cultivating a healthy gut microbiome! I agree-Baklava Butter is SO good. Have a wonderful weekend!

    1. It’s really yummy Katie, and it’s easy to make ahead of time and store in the fridge. I’ve been snacking on it all week, especially when I want a little something sweet, but also nourishing. I’d love to hear what you think if you make it. Have a wonderful weekend!

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