food items packed with iron, spinach, beans, steak, apricot, pulses, nuts

Iron is a hardworking little mineral, and it’s so important to include iron-rich food in your diet. Iron’s real superpower is the ability to help red blood cells form oxygen, and it also plays an important role in maintaining good muscle function. If you don’t get enough iron, you can soon start to feel tired and rundown.

Which foods are rich in iron?

There are actually two types of iron: the type that is found in animal products is called haem iron, and is easier for our body to absorb. Non-haem iron is found in green veggies and plant-based foods, and is, by comparison, a bit harder for the body to absorb. Vitamin C helps our body to absorb the iron we need, so combine the ingredients below with vitamin C-rich foods for maximum effects.


A fantastic source of iron, eggs are also a super-versatile ingredient. You can include them in your diet at any time of day: breakfast, lunch or dinner! This fluffy Duck egg frittata with peas & beans is a great way to pack some extra iron into your diet.

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Red meat is another good source of iron, and the iron in beef is easily absorbed by the body. This griddled steak and peppers recipe is a lovely, well-balanced dish, perfect for a special night in.

Broad beans and spinach

Of course, we all know that spinach gives you Popeye-style muscles… but this super-veg is also seriously high in iron. Broad beans are another great green source of iron. Keep it simple with these gorgeous Broad bean, garlic & feta bruschetta, or have a whirl at this lovely Spinach pici pasta.

Dried fruit

Raisins and dried apricots contain iron, and they’re an ideal snack when you need something to keep you going between meals. Also try adding a handful to cereal, or go for the iron double whammy with this Wilted spinach with yoghurt & raisins dish.

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Legumes and nuts

Fantastic haricot and kidney beans are a good source of iron, as are lots of other nuts, including almonds, cashews, walnuts and hazelnuts. Get your fill of magical beans in this Mexican wrap, or sprinkle toasted hazelnuts over dishes such as Roasted scallops and pancetta.

For more brilliant recipes packed with nutrients and minerals, check out our Nutrition hub. It’s packed with the info you need to enjoy a super-balanced, healthy diet.