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a collection of recipes to help fix a leaky gut

Recipes in this collection:

Asparagus and Brussels Sprouts Salad With Kefir Ranch Dressing  ⋅  Wild Salmon Cakes With Kimchi Tartar Sauce  ⋅  Quinoa Bowls With Herby Yogurt Dressing  ⋅  Mulligatawny Soup  ⋅  Maple Vanilla Porridge

Food is medicine, and if your gut is giving you trouble, part of the fix may lie in the meals you eat.

The lining of your intestines — which, if stretched and laid out flat, would cover more than 4,000 square feet — has one main job: to absorb nutrients and water into the bloodstream and keep unwanted things out. But in an unhealthy gut, the lining can be too permeable, or “leaky,” allowing toxins, bacteria, and food particles through.

Also known as intestinal permeability, leaky gut taxes the liver and stresses the immune system. It’s been tied to gastrointestinal disorders, like celiac and inflammatory bowel disease, as well as to chronic conditions like arthritis, fibromyalgia, and even asthma. (To learn more about leaky gut, see “How to Heal a Leaky Gut.”)

Your diet can support your gut’s well-being. Pro- and prebiotics, healthy fats, phytonutrient-rich vegetables, nuts, and gluten-free grains can all help rebuild tissue and repair the gut lining.

The recipes that follow are designed to support that healing process. Better still, they’re simple enough to whip up on a weekday and so flavorful that you’ll want to make them again and again.

Shaved Asparagus and Brussels Sprouts Salad With Kefir Ranch Dressing

asparagus and brussels sprout salad

Makes 2 servings  •  Prep time 15 minutes


  • 1 lb. asparagus spears, ends trimmed
  • 1 dozen Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed
  • ¼ cup chopped cashews


  • ⅓ cup plain kefir
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbs. chopped fresh parsley (or 1 tsp. dried)
  • 1 tbs. chopped fresh dill (or 1 tsp. dried)
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the asparagus into thin ribbons. Use a knife or a mandoline to thinly slice the Brussels sprouts.
  2. In a food processor or blender, blend the kefir, mayonnaise, garlic, herbs, lemon juice, salt, and pepper until smooth.
  3. Toss the vegetables with the dressing, top with the chopped cashews, and serve.

Wild Salmon Cakes With Kimchi Tartar Sauce

salmon cakes recipe

Makes 4 servings •  Prep time 10 minutes •  Cook time 30 minutes

Salmon Cakes

  • 1 6–8 oz. wild-caught salmon fillet
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 small white onion, minced
  • ½ bell pepper, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ¼ tsp. dried thyme
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup gluten-free panko-style breadcrumbs (or wheat-based panko)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 tbs. mayonnaise
  • 2 tbs. minced fresh parsley


  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • ½ cup plain, full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup finely chopped kimchi
  • 2 tbs. kimchi brine
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Coat the salmon with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and place, skin-side down, on a sheet pan. Bake for eight to 10 minutes, until the fish is cooked through. Use a fork to flake the flesh, discarding skin and any bones. Set the salmon aside to cool.
  3. Place a skillet over medium heat, then add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and heat until shimmering.
  4. Add the onions and bell peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables have softened, about seven to 10 minutes.
  5. Transfer the onions and peppers to a large bowl with the salmon and stir to combine. Add the remaining cake ingredients and mix well, then use your hands to shape the mixture into palm-size cakes.
  6. Place the skillet back over medium heat and add the remaining ¼ cup of olive oil. Heat the oil until it shimmers, then cook the salmon cakes until crisp and brown, approximately three minutes on each side.
  7. Whisk the tartar sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
  8. Serve the salmon cakes topped with a drizzle of sauce.

Quinoa Bowls With Herby Yogurt Dressing

quinoa bowl recipe to help heal the gut

Makes 2 servings  •  Prep time 10 minutes  •  Cook time 30 minutes


  • 1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 large sweet potato, chopped
  • 6 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup broccoli sprouts


  • ½ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ¼ cup walnuts
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1/8 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 tbs. lemon juice
  • ½ cup full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

Quinoa and Vegetables

  1. Cook the quinoa according to package directions.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Arrange the cauliflower florets and chopped sweet potato on a sheet pan and drizzle with the olive oil, tossing to coat evenly.
  4. Roast for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork-tender and the cauliflower has brown, crispy edges.


  1. Meanwhile, make the dressing in a food processor or blender. Pulse the parsley, walnuts, garlic, and salt until combined.
  2. Add the lemon juice and Greek yogurt and process until smooth, then add the olive oil and process until emulsified.


  1. Assemble bowls by adding a scoop of the cooked quinoa, roasted vegetables, and sprouts to each.
  2. Drizzle generously with the dressing and serve.

Bone Broth Mulligatawny Soup

gut healing soup recipe

Makes 4 servings  •  Prep time 30 minutes active, 8 ½ hours simmering  •  Cook time 45 minutes

Bone Broth

  • 1 whole roasted chicken (see recipe at “Classic Roast Chicken”)
  • 12 cups water
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 tbs. apple-cider vinegar


  • ½ cup brown rice, rinsed
  • 2 tbs. grassfed butter
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 rib celery, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4–6 leaves fresh sage, minced
  • 1½ tsp. curry powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • ½ tsp. dried sumac
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • 1 13.5-oz. can coconut milk
  • 2 tbs. minced fresh parsley

Bone Broth and Brown Rice

  1. Remove the chicken meat from the carcass and shred it. Store the shredded meat in the refrigerator. Place the chicken bones in a large pot and cover with 12 cups of water.
  2. Add the salt and apple-cider vinegar and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for six to eight hours or until reduced by about one-third.
  3. When the broth has about one hour left, cook the brown rice in a separate pot according to the package directions and set aside.
  4. When the broth is done cooking, strain it and discard the bones.


  1. Melt the butter over medium heat in a heavy-bottomed stock pot or Dutch oven.
  2. Cook the onion, carrots, and celery until the onions are soft and translucent, about eight to 10 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and sage, stir, and cook until fragrant, about two to three minutes.
  4. Add the curry, paprika, oregano, and sumac, and stir to coat.
  5. Add the broth, rice, shredded chicken, and salt and stir to combine. Bring the soup to a simmer, cover, and let cook for 30 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in the coconut milk. Serve topped with the minced parsley.

Maple Vanilla Millet Porridge

maple porridge topped with strawberries

Makes 2 servings  •  Prep time 5 minutes  •  Cook time 20 minutes

  • ½ cup millet
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup oat milk (or nondairy milk of choice)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbs. maple syrup
  • ¼ cup sliced fresh strawberries
  1. In a pot over medium heat, bring the millet, water, and milk to a boil. Stir, reduce heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the millet is tender and some liquid remains.
  2. Use an immersion blender to purée until smooth, then stir in the vanilla and maple syrup.
  3. Serve topped with the sliced strawberries.

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Photography: Terry Brennan; Food Styling: Betsy Nelson
Kate Morgan

Kate Morgan is a Pennsylvania-based writer and recipe developer.

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