If you’ve followed us on social media for any length of time you’ll know that we love a pointless celebration. This month, for example, is National Fresh Celery Month, so if you’ve been waiting for an excuse to show everyone’s least favourite vegetable some love now’s your chance. We don’t know who comes up with these things (the national celery advisory board? Association of fresh celery growers?) but who are we to let such monumental occasions pass us by?
Forget the celery, though, as this week is British pie week, celebrating that most British of things – pie. We’ll be honest, we don’t eat much pie here – a good old Pukka steak and kidney pie is over 500 calories, for example, and that’s before you add in mash or chips or whatever your chosen accompaniment is, so it’s difficult to justify when you’re watching your calorie intake like a hawk.
But it is possible to enjoy pie and still lose weight. So, put on your party hats and add a pie to your meal plan for this week. Here are a few of our favourites…
Hairy Dieters’ chicken and ham tangle pie – 429 calories per serving
This is something we’ve made loads because as with most Hairy Dieters recipes, this is easy to make, satisfying yet low in cals, and absolutely delicious. The sauce is made with creme fraiche instead of cream and filo pastry instead of puff or shortcrust to keep the calories down.
Chicken, bacon and leek pie – 344 calories per serving
If you’re of the opinion that pie absolutely needs puff pastry with none of this filo nonsense, then this is for you. You can pick up reduced-calorie pastry and using semi-skimmed milk for the sauce is an easy switch.
Steak and mushroom pie – 499 calories per serving
Alright, so this recipe clocks up almost as many calories as the Pukka pie previously mentioned, but this pie is huge and is packed full of lean steak, mushrooms and onions, making it a hearty option for your dinner.
Indian potato pie – 350 calories per serving
This is a bit of a different pie – spicy potatoes and peas make up the filling and it’s all wrapped in crispy filo pastry. It’s something which is really good cold, so it makes for a perfect lunch or no-fuss, no-effort dinner.
Rainbow vegetable pie – 349 calories per serving
At almost 3 hours to make, this is definitely one of those things you’ll only be making when you want to impress someone, but nevertheless doesn’t it look good?! Each layer of vegetables is sandwiched with gooey mozzerella cheese, and it’s one of the few low-cal pies that has proper pastry wrapped all the way around.
Greek spanakopita – 393 calories per serving
Spanakopita is a popular Greek dish which is basically a cheesy spinach pie. It’s really easy, low in calories and one of those things that you can make on a whim if you’ve got some pastry and spinach in your freezer.
Shepherd’s Pie – 429 calories per serving
Now, does a shepherd’s pie count as a proper pie? We’re not sure, but what we are sure about is that shepherd’s pie is delicious and just the thing to warm your cockles on a cold, snowy March evening such as the ones we’ve had this week. This recipe has been lightened up by using lean lamb mince and by the addition of sweet potato to the topping – subtle swaps which have very little impact on the flavour.