2 Spoons/ Dinner

Speedy Paella for the Brain

This is a reinvention of my not so traditional take on Paella. The result is this delicious, nutritious dish that takes virtually no time at all to prepare and cook, and is full of healthy, fibro fabulous, ingredients.

Fibro Food Fairy

Free From Information:

  • Dairy free
  • Egg free
  • Gluten free
  • Nut free
  • Soya free
  • Refined sugar free

Whilst the original version of this recipe was super tasty and full of lots of fibro fabulous ingredients, it was a little labour-intensive for people with fibromyalgia or other chronic health issues. I have spent more time in the kitchen to modify the recipe so that you can spend less time in the kitchen preparing it. The result is this delicious, nutritious dish that takes virtually no time at all to prepare and cook, and is full of healthy ingredients.

I call it Speedy Paella for the Brain as instead of using the traditional seafood I have opted for mackerel. Fatty fish such as mackerel, salmon and sardines are high in omega-3. Omega-3 is a fatty acid that has long been associated with cognitive health. There is research to suggest that omega-3 could potentially be great for those of us who suffer with anxiety and stress. These mood disorders are commonly associated with fibromyalgia. Whilst currently there is not enough evidence to say that increasing your omega-3 will relieve your symptoms it has been proven that increasing our intake of these essential fatty acids is a dietary improvement that may be of some benefit to us all. As someone who suffers with brain fog (or Fibro-fog as we call it) anything that may improve my cognitive performance is worth considering. However, personally I don’t find this too challenging as mackerel is one of my favourites.

The other tweak to this recipe is that instead of adding saffron, the highly expensive spice that gives paella that lovely golden, sunshine colour, I add Turmeric. Although turmeric is a spice more commonly used in Indian and South East Asian cooking, I find it works just as well in this recipe. Turmeric is another fibro fabulous ingredient that may help to lower anxiety by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress.

Speedy Paella for the Brain

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By Fibro Food Fairy Serves: 2-3
Prep Time: Less than 5 minutes Cooking Time: 5-10 minutes

This delicious, nutritious dish takes virtually no time at all to prepare and cook and is full of healthy, fibro fabulous, ingredients.


  • 1 tablespoon light olive oil or rice bran oil
  • 60g frozen chopped shallots or frozen chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon garlic purée
  • 100g chorizo (preservative free) chopped into rounds
  • 1 tablespoon tomato purée
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • Zest & juice of a lemon
  • 250g pouch of cooked brown Basmati rice
  • A handful of frozen peas
  • 165g tin sweetcorn & peppers, drained
  • 150g cooked, peeled king prawns
  • 2 smoked mackerel fillets, skin removed and torn into bite-size pieces
  • Salt-and-pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley and lemon wedges to serve



Heat the oil, over a medium heat, in a large deep, frying pan or sauté pan. Cook the onions, garlic and chorizo for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens. This will allow the flavour of the chorizo oils to ooze out and infuse with the other ingredients.


Add the tomato purée, smoked paprika, turmeric, lemon zest, lemon juice, cooked rice, frozen peas and the drained sweetcorn. Stir to combine and loosen the rice. Next add the king prawns and the smoked mackerel. Season to taste. Cover and leave to warm through for approximately 5 minutes. If the rice seems too dry add a couple of tablespoons of water to prevent it from catching on the bottom of the pan.


Ensuring the rice is piping hot, serve with freshly chopped herbs and a good squeeze of lemon juice.


FIBRO FABULOUS TIP: frozen shallots will take less time to cook than the frozen onion, so keep an eye on them and don’t let them burn!

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