Our Favorite Recipes to Help Boost Gut Health

kale-and-apple salad
Photo: Con Poulos

Looking to improve your digestion and boost immunity? Try these easy recipes that feature probiotic, prebiotic, and fiber-rich foods known to help feed a healthy gut.

01 of 17
workout yogurt with berries
Bryan Gardner

"Go with your gut." We've all heard the old adage that's most often used in terms of decision-making, but it applies to food and nutrition, too. After all, your gut is home to trillions of bacteria, collectively known as your gut microbiome. This community of microorganisms influences myriad areas of health (think: digestion and nutrient absorption), but they can't do it alone. In order to thrive and support your body, these microbes need certain nutrients from food.

But first, it's worth noting that not all gut bacteria are equal. Most of the microbes in your gut are beneficial or "good," meaning they support digestive health. Other bacteria are harmful or "bad," as they can cause gastrointestinal issues if they're present in high amounts. All that said, the key to great gut health is to ensure there are more good than bad bacteria present in your gut at any given time.

That's where our best recipes for gut health come in. In each of the following dishes, the main ingredients offer nutrients that aid good microbes. For example, we have homemade kombucha and yogurt, which are teeming with probiotics—or live beneficial bacteria that "repopulate" your gut with the good guys. You'll also find fruit-forward recipes (we're looking at you, apple and banana smoothie), which are full of fiber, a type of carbohydrate that nourishes helpful bacteria.

We also have recipes that feature whole grains, leafy greens, and lentils, all of which are brimming with good-for-you fiber. The best part? This collection includes a variety of dishes, from sweet breakfast bowls to savory dinner entrées, making it easy to add digestive-friendly recipes to your rotation. Your gut will thank you!

02 of 17

Vegan Banana Bread

Emily Kate Roemer

Instead of eggs, this vegan banana bread uses ground flaxseed as a binder. This is great news for your belly, as flaxseeds and bananas are packed with gut-supportive fiber. Plus, flaxseeds boast an earthy and nutty flavor, resulting in a delightful homemade bread.

03 of 17

Quinoa or Millet Breakfast Bowl

quinoa or millet breakfast bowl
Chris Simpson

Take a break from your usual oats with this quinoa or millet breakfast bowl. Both ingredients are whole grains, meaning they're rich in fiber and vitamins. The dish also pairs well with a range of toppings, like juicy berries and crunchy nuts, making the possibilities deliciously endless.

04 of 17

Homemade Kombucha

jars of kombucha

Kombucha is a lightly fizzy fermented tea that's packed with probiotics. It's also widely available in stores, but it can cost a pretty penny, especially if you drink it often. Try your hand at homemade kombucha—you'll find that it's surprisingly easy to make at home.

05 of 17

Farmhouse Culture's Classic Kraut with Caraway


If sour foods are more your style, make a batch of homemade sauerkraut, or fermented cabbage. It takes about three weeks to ferment, but the pungent flavor and digestive benefits will be well worth the wait.

06 of 17

Miso Dressing

Bryan Gardner

Miso, which is made of fermented soybeans, is another source of probiotics. It's often used in dishes like soup, but it's excellent in dressings, too. Add this miso dressing to salad, meat, or a simple bowl of brown rice for a burst of umami flavor.

07 of 17

Smoothie Parfait

smoothie parfait
Ngoc Minh Ngo

What's delicious, nutritious, and beautiful to boot? This smoothie-parfait hybrid, of course. Greek yogurt offers gut-friendly probiotics, while chia seeds, spinach, and chopped fruit provide a plethora of fiber.

08 of 17

Baked Oatmeal for a Crowd with Berries and Seeds

Baked Oatmeal for a Crowd with Berries and Seeds
Chris Simpson

Elevate your next morning brunch with a batch of baked oatmeal. Not only is it bursting with fiber, it's also naturally sweetened with medjool dates and maple syrup.

09 of 17

Black Bean and Sweet Potato Stew

Black-Bean and Sweet-Potato Stew recipe
Lennart Weibull

Conquer meal prep for the week with this hearty vegetarian stew. It requires just 20 minutes of preparation and can be made vegan, too.

10 of 17

Sweet Oat-Walnut Crisps

sweet oat walnut crisps
Jonathan Lovekin

If your gut could use some TLC, add these whole grain crackers to your snack repertoire. From rolled oats to chopped walnuts, they feature multiple ingredients known to improve digestive health.

11 of 17

Instant Pot Yogurt

multicooker yogurt in glass jar
Kirsten Frances

One of our best recipes for gut health is this Instant Pot yogurt. It's delightfully affordable, easy to make, and perfect for everything from parfaits to sauces.

12 of 17

Apple Smoothie

Mike Krautter

Treat your gut—and your taste buds—to a refreshing apple smoothie. Featuring a blend of flaxseed, banana, and apple, this beverage boasts numerous beneficial ingredients.

13 of 17

No-Knead Seeded Overnight Bread

Jonathan Lovekin

Perfectly hearty and rustic, this no-knead bread is teeming with fiber-rich ingredients like whole wheat flour and pumpkin seeds. Enjoy it as a slice of toast or in your go-to sandwich recipe.

14 of 17

Golden Dal with Gingered Tomatoes

golden dal gingered tomatoes
Sidney Bensimon

Red lentils, vegetables, and tomatoes come together in this satisfying stew. The lentils are especially noteworthy, as they're a superb source of plant-based protein and filling fiber. Craving even more gut benefits? Serve this stew with a generous dollop of homemade yogurt.

15 of 17

Bircher Chia Parfait

Bircher Chia Parfait
Nico Schinco

For a filling make-ahead breakfast, give this chia parfait a spin. Our version features mango and raspberries, but all types of fruit are fair game.

16 of 17

Banana Energy Bites

nut and seed banana bites served on a red plate
Kate Mathis

These four-ingredient energy bites will fuel your body and mind. The recipe takes just five minutes to prepare, making it ideal for those busy weekday mornings

17 of 17

Kale and Apple Salad

kale-and-apple salad
Con Poulos

When it comes to digestive health, you can't go wrong with vegetable dishes, and this salad is no exception. Serve it as a side or entrée and round it out with a bright honey vinaigrette.

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