Australian Bush Tucker Guide: 7 Traditional Aboriginal Foods

Bush tucker is any food native to Australia - from the desert to the rainforest. 

60,000 years ago, the super-foraging Aboriginal Australians lived off the land. Back then, it was eat what you could find or don't eat at all!

Their diet was high in protein, fiber and nutrients and much of the bush tucker they ate is eaten to this day. 

We've put together a list of 7 Bush Tucker plants, foods, and ingredients we think are simply awesome ways to eat well - Australia style! 

kakadu plum

1. Kakadu Plum

Also known as the "Wonder From Down Under," the highly nutritious Kakadu Plum contains 100 times more Vitamin C than oranges do. 

Traditionally, Kakadu plums were used to treat headaches and flu, and utilized as an antiseptic.

Kakadu plums are also rich in iron - essential for oxygen transportation throughout your body and red blood cell production.

You can use Kakadu Plum to make: 

  • Kakadu Plum brownies
  • Fruity morning oatmeal
  • A tasty Kakadu milkshake

We use Kakadu Plum in our natural Vitamin C face serum.

2. Mountain Pepper Berry

Let's head down to Southern Australia in search of the famous Mountain Pepper Berry - another excellent addition to our list of must-know Bush Tucker plants, foods, and ingredients.

As well as containing vitamins C and E, Mountain Pepper Berry also contains natural anti-inflammatory agents.

But the benefits of Mountain Pepper Berry don't end there - this Aussie superfood helps increase the body's natural collagen levels - ensuring healthy joints and fewer wrinkles.

Use Mountain Pepper Berry to create:

  • Mountain Pepper infused bread 
  • A sweet berry pie 
  • A healthy fruit salad

3. Quandong

Firstly, let's address the kangaroo in the room - Quandong is one heck of a weird-sounding word. 

However, this mighty berry holds the secret to naturally healthy skin and hair.

As well as containing Vitamin E (a powerful anti-aging ingredient), it's also rich in Iron which helps kick start your body into producing Hemoglobin - the molecule responsible for transporting oxygenated red blood cells around your body.

As long as your body is getting the Hemoglobin it needs, expect a naturally warm-looking complexion, a healthy heart, and more energy during the day. 

In a quandary about your Quandong? Why not try:

  • Quandong relish with a mature cheese
  • Quandong and cinnamon cookies 
  • Baked Quandong with your choice of red meat
davidson plum

4. Davidson Plum

The second plum on our list! We've heard a lot about superfoods recently, but never has so much good come from one type of fruit!

The Davidson Plum is another one of those ingredients that are just packed full of goodness: multiple vitamins, potassium, and calcium, to name a few. 

However, the spotlight falls on the Davidson Plum's zinc content. Zinc is another grade A nutrient to look out for if you want to improve your overall health.

Not to get too scientific, but a high zinc intake gives your cells strength, energy, and the ability to divide and multiply more rapidly. What does this mean? Newer, stronger cells that help you to look fresh and feel youthful for longer. 

Combine the Davidson Plum with ingredients like Quandong, and you'll see a very positive change in your overall appearance and health. A plum cocktail? Don't mind if I do. 

Want to know some Davidson Plum recipes to mix things up a bit? Why not try:

  • Davidson Plum jam on brown toast
  • Thick yogurt with a topping of cooked Davidson Plum
  • Cheesecake with a Davidson Plum jam

5. Macadamia Nut

The Macadamia isn't a fussy nut - they are native to most parts of Australia and can be grown anywhere in the world with a hot climate. 

When explorers discovered them on an expedition to the Queensland Pine River District in 1857, they soon realized just how awesome they were. 

Macadamia nuts contain antioxidants and a good amount of soluble fiber. What does this mean? Well - your gut is going to thank you. You'll feel fuller for longer and have a healthier digestive cycle to boot. 

Some people also consider these a great weight loss solution. Macadamia nuts can deliver healthy fats to your stomach that stop you from reaching for the biscuit tin. 

Need some Macadamia nuts in your life? Why not try:

  • Custard and Macadamia nut pie
  • Natural yogurt with Macadamia nuts and mixed berries
  • Sweet Macadamia nut and banana bread

6. Lilly Pilly

Lilly Pilly can be found on the east coast of Australia. 

This Scrub Shrub is a great ingredient to look out for if you want to improve the overall condition of your skin - it is a naturally occurring skin cleanser that can help to deep-clean pores and exfoliate the face. 

Alpha-Hydroxy Acid (contained in Lilly Pilly) can also boost skin-cell growth and brighten your complexion in tiny quantities. Look out for this Bush Tucker Plant in skin serums and creams, or include it in your diet to give your food that extra nutritional kick.

Lilly Pilly can be used to create:

  • Lilly Pilly chutney 
  • Pear and Lilly Pilly cake
  • Lilly Pilly infused champagne

 

lemon myrtle

7. Lemon Myrtle 

As you'll know - sun damage is a big deal when it's 95 °F outside, and you're just dying to throw a few sausages on the BBQ. That's why this ingredient is key when trying to maintain younger-looking skin. 

Lemon Myrtle contains high levels of Vitamin E, a major player in helping your skin repair itself effectively and helps to fix the damage done by the sun.

It's also really high in Vitamin A - which helps to reduce signs of aging like fine lines and wrinkles.

Lemon Myrtle is a great ingredient that helps you cook:

  • Lemon Myrtle roast chicken
  • Lemon Myrtle panna cotta 
  • Lemon Myrtle and green veg curry

All in all, Lemon Myrtle is a powerhouse for repairing and maintaining a youthful complexion, which is why we've included it in many of our natural skincare and haircare products here at VITAMAN.