A diet rich in vegetables is good for our health – and good for our waistline. In fact, the bulk and fiber found in vegetables can fill you up, leaving less room for cravings for sweets and unhealthy treats.
However, saying we need to eat more vegetables and actually eating more vegetables are two very different things!
If you’re looking to add more vegetables into your diet, here is our list of easy ways to meet your goal of three to five servings a day:
- Instead of using traditional pasta, make spaghetti squash “noodles” and top them with your favorite marina sauce.
- Puree a variety of vegetables (think cauliflower and sweet potatoes) and add them to breading, spaghettis sauce, ground meat and cream-based soups. This is a great way to get more vegetables into your kids’ diet!
- Make a casserole with a base of shredded vegetables.
- Add salsa over other condiments on everything from baked potatoes and burritos.
- Mash cauliflower and add garlic, Parmesan cheese and a bit of butter.
- Make an egg-white omelet with loads of fresh vegetables like peppers, onions and mushrooms.
- Chop and shred a number of vegetables at the beginning of each week so you can easily add them to your favorite dishes throughout the week without hassle.
- Cut strips of celery and carrots and keep them in water-filled containers in the refrigerator for a quick and easy snack.
- If you need a quick and easy way to get your vegetables, consider purchasing a juicer. Fresh-squeezed carrot juice is delicious and is a nutritious way to start your day.
- Spend a lazy Sunday afternoon making a big bowl of vegetable-based soup and freeze it to eat throughout the course of the work week.
- Instead of making meat the centerpiece of your meal, switch it up with vegetables. Make a large salad or mixed vegetables the main part of your meal, and your waistline will thank you for it!
- If you don’t think you like a certain vegetable, give it another try. Often times, adults won’t eat vegetables because they didn’t like them as children, but taste for food changes as we age, so give those vegetables another try!
- Purchase a wok and make a vegetable and chicken stir fry part of your weekly routine.
- Eat local and in-season vegetables. Awaken your senses by visiting your local farmer’s market and discover the many beautiful vegetable selections in your area. Who knew fennel bulb could be so delicious roasted, and that kale makes delicious baked chips?
- It is quite possible to puree vegetables into your favorite cake recipe. Add a cup of pureed spinach into your next cake, and you won’t even taste the difference!
- Get creative when you make a salad. There are so many great vegetables to add to salads, so don’t immediately add just tomatoes and onions or you’ll quickly get bored. Add crunchy toppings like rice noodles or sunflower seeds and spice up your salad!
- Sautee or steam fresh vegetables and add a variety of herbs and spices to make things exciting.
- Make a veggie pizza. Make a white pizza with tomatoes, onions and other vegetables or make a sauce-based pizza and load it up with vegetables instead of meat.
Vegetables can be an easy, delicious part of all your meals, especially with these tips!