by Yasmin Al Mulla
  • 4 minute read
  • March 29, 2020
Fitness Advocate Yasmin Al Mulla Shares Her Top 3 Plant-Based Meals To Boost Your Immunity In Quarantine

As a long-term advocate of health and fitness, I believe that optimal eating is a sustainable, beautiful lifestyle. I’ve maintained a gluten-, dairy-, and refined-sugar-free diet for many years now, and that’s in addition to my workouts and strength training, yoga, and meditation. Focusing on nourishing, nutritious and wholesome food is much easier than people think, and consuming everything in moderation is key.

The immune system relies on white blood cells that produce antibodies to combat bacteria, viruses and other invaders. With the help of a healthy diet, you can allow your body to achieve this naturally. As many people ask if there are any measures they can take to ensure their health during this pandemic, I’ve put together my list of three plant-based meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner to boost your immune system during this period of self-isolation. 

This is a great chance to keep yourself busy and entertained during the quarantine. Let’s prepare our meals, enjoy them, and boost our immune system together. Remember that we’re in this together, so stay safe and positive, and observe social distancing. Most importantly, stay at home.


Almond and Raspberry Chia Pudding

This is a great go-to breakfast and source of healthy fats, protein, fiber and minerals.


  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 3 tablespoons Chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • Pinch of cardamom

For raspberry sauce

  • Frozen raspberries
  • 1 teaspoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon almond milk 
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar

Topping (Anything you desire, literally)

  • Raspberries
  • Blueberries
  • Flax seeds
  • Coconut sugar
  • Dried coconut
  • Toasted almond flakes


  1. Blend almond milk, maple syrup and cardamom powder till you have a liquid texture.
  2. In a bowl, add Chia seeds to the milk and whisk thoroughly. Let the mixture rest for 5 minutes and then stir again. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight.
  3. For the topping layer, blend the frozen raspberries and coconut sugar (if desired) with almond butter and almond milk until you have a smooth creamy sauce.
  4. Before serving, give the pudding a good stir and add the creamy sauce, top it with berries or a fruit of your choice.


Rich Probiotic Salad with artichoke hearts and grilled zucchini

This hearty salad is an ideal lunch option for this quarantine period. All ingredients contain healthy bacteria and probiotics that promote overall wellness and boost immunity.


  • 200g artichoke hearts (half a can)
  • 2 small zucchini (sliced)
  • 1/2 cup pitted olives
  • 1/3 Cup roasted chickpeas
  • 1 tablespoon hemp seeds
  • 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds

For dressing

  • 1/3 cup cabbage kimchi
  • Water (if needed)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dill
  • 1 teaspoon unflavored probiotic powder


  1. Start by grilling your zucchini and olives using a toaster or outdoor grill, and then cover the lid. Flip occasionally until charred in spots and crisp-tender.
  2. Gently rinse and drain the artichoke (squeezing out any excess liquid with a paper towel) and slice into 4 sections per piece.
  3. Transfer everything into a bowl and top it with the remaining ingredients.
  4. For the dressing, place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Add water if you want a thinner consistency. Taste and adjust seasoning.
  5. Serve and enjoy!


Asian Fusion Pasta

This is a super easy Asian-fusion-inspired and creamy pasta with a high nutritional value. Works perfectly for your lazy weekend dinners.


  • 100g sliced Shiitake mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free pasta (I use chickpea pasta)
  • 1/3 cup cooked butter beans
  • 100g broccolini
  • 1/4 cup chopped leeks
  • 1 tablespoon tamari sauce
  • 1/4 cup oats milk
  • 1 teaspoon tahini
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon ginger and garlic paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika powder
  • Himalayan salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cook the pasta according to instructions on the pack.
  2. Pre-heat the oven, season the Shiitake mushrooms and brocollini with sesame oil, paprika and garlic powder in a large bowl and toss lightly, making sure they’re perfectly seasoned. Arrange it in a single layer on a prepared baking sheet (don’t overcrowd), and bake for 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a wok or a large frying pan, then stir-fry the garlic, ginger and garlic paste, leeks, onion and garlic powder, tamari sauce, and chili powder, salt and pepper over high heat for 2-3 minutes or until fragrant. At this point, add oat milk and tahini and cook for few minutes.
  4. Add butter beans and stir well until everything is coated and creamy.
  5. Drain the pasta thoroughly, add it to the pain and then stir-fry for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, add the cooked Shiitake mushrooms and broccolini and stir well.
  6. Squeeze a lemon, serve hot and enjoy!

Yasmin Al Mulla is an Emirati fashion designer and the co-founder and Creative Director of YNM. She has to her credit collaborations with brands including Tiffany & Co, Graff, Jimmy Choo, Level Shoes, Ex Nihilo and Baccarat. She’s also a fitness enthusiast and is committed to a holistic lifestyle, and is known for creating and sharing her own healthy recipes. Follow her on @Yasminalmulla and @Ynmdubai.

Villa 88’s V for Victory series will feature news and views from industry experts about health and wellness, beauty, fashion, arts and culture, and law in the age of COVID-19. It’s an initiative that encourages you to stay at home and promotes ways you can best utilize your time during self-quarantine. Because together, we will be victorious over the virus.

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