By now we all know that we need to be eating vegetables
LOTS of vegetables, and every day.
But it can feel daunting to know that we need 5-7 servings per day and figure out how exactly we get them all in. Not to mention that we need to make them tasty enough to keep doing it day after day.
Eating vegetables shouldn’t be a joyless chore, when done right they are delicious in their own right if you prepare them in ways that let them shine.
Here are some tips, recipes and resources to help you eat and enjoy vegetables more.
Cut veggies into bite sized pieces, toss with some avocado oil and salt, and roast in an oven heated to 425. Flip them over with a spatula halfway through roasting time so they get lightly browned on both sides.
Cooking time is longer (30 min or so) for root veggies and shorter for non-root veggies (can be as little as 20 min, but check on them).
Make sure they are seasoned well with salt.
Too much salt is bad for our health, but having enough salt to make vegetables taste good helps you eat them with pleasure. Everyone has a different set point for saltiness, so salt to the level that tastes good for you unless you have been told by a doctor to lower your sodium intake.
Add some acidity
Veggies often benefit from a little hit of acid— squeeze some lemon or lime, or dollop some yogurt on top
Have a salad at each meal
Start with a veggie centered dish, then add protein after.
This is especially good with sheet-pan dinners. Here is a link to my favorite veggie main dish. Throw some shrimp or chunks of sausage on top near the end of baking and serve over whole wheat pasta, polenta, rice, or riced cauliflower. With a side salad, of course.
Roasted ratatouille: https://alexandracooks.com/2017/09/01/roasted-ratatouille-pasta/
Use a veggie instead of pasta or rice as a side for saucy mains — cauliflower rice, raw or wilted spinach, spaghetti squash, spiralized zucchini or sweet potato.
For example, rather than dinner of meatballs over spaghetti, do meatballs and sauce over cauliflower rice or a bed of baby spinach.
Add a veggie into your main dish, then have a veggie side dish (even if it’s a simple salad).
My family loves this recipe for a garlicky pasta where zucchini is the main event. Zucchini butter pasta: https://smittenkitchen.com/2021/06/zucchini-butter-spaghetti/
Soup— You can make simple pureed soup with just about any veggie.
Here’s a good base. Don’t worry about exact measurements and if you don’t have celery, skip it. Use what you have on hand.
Sheet pan suppers
Roast veggies and protein all on one sheet
Eat a rainbow every day.
Grocery shop with colors in mind and have every color on your plate at each meal
Red: beets, red pepper, radicchio, apples, raspberries, strawberries
Orange: winter squashes, mango, apricots, orange pepper, oranges
Yellow: yellow squash, yellow pepper, spaghetti squash
Green: lettuce, collard greens, kale, chard, beet greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, chicory
Blue/purple: blueberries, blackberries, purple potatoes
Additional ideas and recipes are easily found at the following blogs:
Cathryn enjoys a range of activities in her free time, such as cooking, baking, meal planning, researching food, reading cookbooks, sewing, hiking, rock climbing and playing board games with family. She is currently working on creating a fertility coaching program to help guide women through the process of trying to conceive.