Healthier Authentic South African Recipes

If there is something that South Africans love, it is eating. And eating well! However, that is not usually synonymous with health.

Here at IPS Health and Wellness we would like you to still enjoy those authentic and special South African dishes but still look after your health as well. These recipes have been adapted to do just that- be healthier but just as tasty!


Healthier Malva Pudding

Malva pudding is a sweet pudding of South African origin. It contains apricot jam and has a spongy caramelized texture. A cream sauce is often poured over it while it is hot, and it is usually served with custard and/or ice-cream. Many South African restaurants offer it.

The pudding gained popularity on the West Coast of the US after Oprah Winfrey’s personal chef, Art Smith, served it for Christmas dinner in 2006 to the pupils of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa.

Usually containing vast amounts of sugar, jam and cream – the health effects are not what we would like it to be, but with small tweaks and changes, the nutritional profile is adjusted to be much healthier without sacrificing taste.

Prep Time15 mins

Cook Time20 mins

Total Time35 mins

For the batter:

  • 1 tsp ripe banana-mashed and brown
  • 1 tsp smooth apricot jam
  • 1/8 cup muscovado brown sugar
  • 1/3 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup flour
    • Use a ratio of 1:1 – Whole wheat Nutty wheat flour to White flour
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 4 tsp applesauce
  • 1/3 tsp baking soda
  • very small pinch of salt


  • 1/8 cup honey
  • 1/8 cup of boiling water
  • 25mL of olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla essence


  1. Preheat oven to 180ᵒ
  2. Grease with olive oil or cooking spray.
  3. On stovetop melt banana, preserves, sugar, and vinegar and stir until smooth.
  4. Sift flour, then add to mixture, alternating with milk.
  5. Add applesauce, baking soda, and salt.
  6. Mix well.
  7. Pour into greased dish and put in oven.
  8. Cook for approximately 20 minutes. When it starts to brown on the top insert a toothpick, which should come out clean when it’s done.
  9. Begin with the syrup when the batter has about 5-10 minutes left in the oven. Add all 4 ingredients and heat on stove-top to make the syrup.
  10. When the pudding is done, pour syrup on top. Let it soak in for 5-10 minutes.
  11. When they syrup is soaked in and the malva pudding is cooled down enough to eat, dig in!


Paleo Melktert

Melktert (Afrikaans for “milk tart”) is a uniquely South African dessert consisting of a sweet pastry crust containing a creamy filling made from milk, flour, sugar and eggs. Cinnamon is often sprinkled over its surface.

Melktert is known to be very sweet and high in fat (biscuits and high-fat dairy), meaning that originally it is not the best dessert health-wise. This paleo version is dairy free, grain free and refined sugar-free for a healthier spin on a classic.

However, just a slight adaptation of these components can change it into a much healthier treat.

  • Cinnamon is a potent natural antioxidant and powerful anti-inflammatory.
  • Substituting sugar for raw honey brings about various health benefits, such as antifungal and antibacterial, prebiotic and anti-inflammatory effects.

Prep Time10 mins

Cook Time30 mins

Total Time40 mins


  • Pie Crust


  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon


  1. Thoroughly grease a pie plate or tart pan with olive oil or cooking spray (3cm deep and 24cm wide).
  2. Prepare your crust, note that the filling needs approximately 30 minutes of baking at 180°C to set.
  3. To make the filling, use a hand mixer to whip the eggs, coconut cream and honey together until smooth and thoroughly combined.
  4. On medium-low heat, warm the mixture in a pot with the cinnamon sticks, stirring constantly until simmering.
  5. Pour into the crust and bake in the preheated oven for approximately 30 minutes, until set.
  6. Remove from the oven, allow to cool to room temperature, then sprinkle the cinnamon over the surface by hand or using a small sieve/strainer.
  7. Serve cold or at room temperature.


Healthy Recipe South African Bobotie

Bobotie, a traditional South African dish with Cape Malay influences from the India, is a delicious and comforting recipe.

  • By swopping butter for heart healthy olive oil, and whole milk for 2% or almond milk, and using high quality, lean, and organic meat, bobotie becomes a healthy dish.
  • Turmeric is a potently healthy spice, boasting powerful anti-inflammatory properties that help fight disease, reduce inflammation, and increase immunity in the body.
  • Lean lamb or beef provides necessary protein and iron, helping all your muscles and organs function at peak capacity.

Serve bobotie with a generous side salad, wholesome rice, and steamed vegetables.


  • 2 large yellow onions, finely chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp curry powder
  • 1 slice brown bread
  • 1 cup of 2% or unsweetened plain almond milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp of raw honey
  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/2 Tbsp ground turmeric
  • Juice and zest of one large lemon
  • 3 Tbsp chopped mango chutney
  • 12 blanched almonds, chopped
  • 1/2 cup seedless raisins
  • 3 lemon leaves (if available)
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes, fresh or canned
  • 1 kg lean organic minced lamb or beef


  1. Brown the onions and garlic lightly in the oil and add the curry powder.
  2. Cook gently for about two minutes until slightly golden brown.
  3. Soak the bread in the milk and squeeze dry, saving the milk.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, add the onion mixture to the bread with all the remaining ingredients, reserving one egg.
  5. Mix well to combine.
  6. Pack the mixture tightly into a flat, ovenproof dish that has been rubbed lightly with olive oil.
  7. Bake at 180ᵒC degrees for one hour.
  8. Beat the remaining egg with a little of the saved milk and pour over the top of the bobotie.
  9. Return to the oven and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the custard is set and golden brown.
  10. Serve with rice mixed with raisins, steamed mixed seasonal vegetables, and more mango chutney on top if desired.