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Food Sources of Vitamin D – How to keep your Vitamin D levels up in winter.


Also known as the Sunshine Vitamin, Vitamin D is one thing we miss out on during the cold, dark days of winter. So, what can you do? Besides supplementing* regularly with Vitamin D, why not make it super delicious and add in foods that are high in Vitamin D? 

* Make sure to check with your doctor, nutritionist, or pharmacists, before supplementing with Vitamin D. 


Food Sources of Vitamin D

Let’s have a look at food sources of vitamin D along with a couple of recipes to get you started in your weekly menu.


Animal Sources of Vitamin D

The top foods which provide naturally occurring vitamin D are normally found in animal products such as oily fish, dairy products and eggs. Here are some examples: 


Oily Fish

  • Fish liver oils 
  • Sardines 
  • Herring 
  • Salmon 
  • Mackerel 
  • Tuna 


Dairy Products

  • Milk 
  • Cheese 
  • Yoghurt 
  • Butter 


Plant-based Sources of Vitamin D

There are not so many vegan or plant-based sources of Vitamin D, so when eating a plant-based diet it is important to be conscious of where you get your Vitamin D from. 


Fortified products – check the labels

  • Breakfast cereals 
  • Plant-based milk 
  • Juices 
  • Nutritional powders 


Naturally occurring

  • Mushrooms that have been exposed to sunlight or UV light (check labels) 


Vitamin D Meal & Snack Ideas

As always, check the product labels to see how much vitamin D you can expect in each serving. Also make sure you incorporate these meals into an overall healthy and balanced diet. 


Vitamin D Breakfast Ideas 

  1. Fortified bran flakes with semi-skimmed milk and some fruit 
  2. Yoghurt with fruit and nuts 
  3. Smoked salmon on toast with avocado slices and a bit of onion 
  4. Egg on toast with beans and a sprinkle of cheese 


Vitamin D Snack Ideas 

  1. Cottage cheese with fruit and nuts 
  2. Vitamin D enriched mushrooms – sautéed in butter, spread on a toast or cracker 


Vitamin D Lunch Ideas 

  1. Leafy green Caesar salad with avocado slices and sardines 
  2. Buddha Bowl – sliced boiled egg (or fatty fish), avocado, broccoli tops, sweet potato chunks on top of quinoa 
  3. Stir fried rice with lots of vegetables and a scrambled egg 
  4. Egg salad sandwich on fortified toast, with a side salad of leafy greens 


Vitamin D Dinner Ideas 

  1. Grilled Mackerel with steamed broccoli, baked potato, and some low-fat cheese 
  2. Cooked salmon added to pasta with a creamy, dairy-based sauce along with string beans or other green vegetable 
  3. Vitamin D enriched mushrooms cooked into a brown rice risotto with a sprinkle of cheese on top 
  4. Poke Bowl – salmon chunks on rice with seaweed, shredded raw radish, and carrot slices. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top. 



Vitamin D Recipes



1/2 cup cooked quinoa 

1/4 avocado sliced 

1 boiled egg or 120g of salmon, cooked 

3 small broccoli tops, cooked 

1/2 sweet potato, cut into chunks, cooked 

Sesame seeds, to taste 

Your favourite dressing  



  1. Prepare your ingredients (clean, chop, cook) 
  2. Place the quinoa at the bottom of the bowl and spread out 
  3. Add in each ingredient one at a time next to each other, so you can see each ingredient and its colours. 
  4. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. 
  5. Gently pour your dressing on top, being careful to not over do the dressing. 
  6. Enjoy! 





Pasta & Salmon 

2 pieces of salmon (about 200g) 

160g Tagliatelle pasta, whole grain or gluten-free 

125ml of pasta water 

1 tsp paprika 



2 tbsp olive oil, plus more for drizzling 

2 garlic cloves, minced 

125ml dry white wine (or vegetable stock) 

300ml coconut milk 

½ tsp flour of choice 

½ small lemon, juiced 

Salt and pepper to taste 



  1. Cook your pasta as directed on pack. Save 125ml of the pasta water before draining. 
  2. Warm some olive oil in a pan, add the salmon filets and season with salt, pepper and paprika. 
  3. Cook for 3 minutes on each side, remove from the pan, and set aside. 
  4. In the same pan, add 1 tbsp of olive oil then the flour and garlic. Stir gently. 
  5. After a minute add the coconut milk, white wine or broth and continue to stir until all the lumps are gone. 
  6. Simmer and cook on low for about 3 minutes until the sauce thickens. 
  7. Flake the salmon into smaller bite sized pieces and add to the sauce along with 80ml of the reserved pasta water and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. 
  8. Add in the tagliatelle, tossing with tongs. If the sauce is too sticky, add a bit more of the pasta water. 
  9. Serve and enjoy! 





2 eggs, sliced in half 

2 pieces of whole grain toast 

½ avocado, sliced 

1 tbsp pumpkin seeds 

Olive oil, to drizzle 

Salt, pepper and paprika, to taste 



  1. Prep your ingredients. 
  2. Toast your bread. 
  3. Make two plates: 
  • On each plate, place 1 piece of toast. 
  • On top, place 1 egg. 
  • Avocado slices come next. 
  • Sprinkle half the pumpkin seeds on one plate and half on the other. 
  1. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of paprika.  
  2. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil. 



Fun Facts about Vitamin D


Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, which means it exists in certain fats and gets absorbed best when eaten with fats e.g., a meal of salmon (contains vitamin D) along with some avocado (beneficial fat). 


Vitamin D contributes to the normal function of the immune system. Especially helpful during the winter months. 


Vitamin D contributes to the maintenance of normal teeth. Definitely helpful for chewing delicious food and having a great, lovely smile to share with others!



5. How to add more Vitamin D to your everyday lifestyle!


The key here is to build a habit of adding in vitamin D sources regularly.  



The number one way to get your vitamin D is to be outside with the sun shining on your skin – without sun protection on. Don’t let yourself burn, but allow the sun to kiss your skin. Perhaps consider going for a walk every day, outside in the fresh air allowing the sun to touch your skin. Walking and being outside has more benefits than just vitamin D. 


Eat Vitamin D Foods

The delicious way to obtain vitamin D is via the foods we eat. Try an incorporate a vitamin D food or fortified food into your diet 1-2 times a day. 



With supplementation, connect with your health care professional to see how much, how often and which vitamin D supplement is right for you. 


For more information about vitamins and minerals, have a look at the Food Facts for Healthy Choices website or The British Nutrition Foundation website.