How to Eat More Vegetables
For this week’s works for me wednesday I thought I’d share some easy ways to sneak more vegetables into your diet. I love snacking on fruit, but with vegetables it can be a little hard to get your recommended number of servings. After all, you can only eat so many carrot sticks before you’re sick of them. Over the past couple years I’ve learned that the following tips not only help me eat more vegetables, but also help Mike eat them as well, sometimes without even realizing it. 🙂 This is what works for me.
1. Green Smoothies – We make smoothies every morning for breakfast, which is great for getting some fruit in. But to add some vegetables, I always add spinach to my smoothie. I posted about this a long time ago, but figured it doesn’t hurt to post an update. The secret is to just throw a couple handfuls of spinach in with your normal smoothie ingredients. You can’t taste it (although it does sometimes turn it an interesting color), and it’s added healthiness!
If you’re looking for something easy and healthy to try right now, one of my current favorite combinations is 1 banana, 1 cup of milk, a handful of ice, and a little bit of sugar (or 1 splenda packet). This is what’s pictured above. It’s more of a liquid consistency than a typical smoothie, but it tastes great and it’s good for you!
2. Soups – We pretty much live on soup in the winter. I make a big pot every couple of weeks and store leftovers in the freezer. Soups are a great way to get in a lot of vegetables (and a way to make them taste good!). I tend to fill my soups with carrots, celery, onion, etc. I have a lot of soup recipes on the blog (see all soup recipes), but some of my favorites are roasted vegetable minestrone (pictured above), tortellini vegetable soup, carrot parsnip soup, and creamy chicken and wild rice soup.
3. Stir-fry – This is another favorite of mine. I’m planning a post on stir-fry in the near future, but it’s a great way to have a quick tasty dinner with a lot of vegetables! Also, the varieties are endless.
4. Store cut-up vegetables in your refrigerator. This is probably common sense, but I end up eating a lot more vegetables when they’re washed and cut and just waiting for me in the refrigerator. I try to take 20 minutes during the weekend and cut up some celery, carrots and cucumbers for quick snacking during the week and to pack in lunch boxes.
5. Create a fun dip. Vegetables are always more fun to eat when you can dip them in something creamy and tasty. The picture above is an avocado ailoi dressing I found on my friend Donielle’s blog, Naturally Knocked Up. (Donielle and I met through a West Michigan blogging group and she has some great healthy recipes on her blog.) This one is so simple – you just use your food processor to mix up an avocado, some plain yogurt, salt, basil, garlic and a small amount of apple cider vinegar. This is an easy recipe to play around with, but if you want the measurements I started from, check out Donielle’s recipe for avocado aioli dressing. Mike loves this recipe, and after the vegetable photo shoot he ate all the bagel chips pictured above, dipping them in the avocado dip. He left the vegetables behind, somewhat defeating the point, but I promise they taste good together!
What are your secrets for eating your vegetables? Share in the comments please! 🙂
I actually LOVE veggies. But my favorite way to get them is to make an egg white omelet with spinach and mushrooms then add to a whole wheat low carb wrap with a tomato, bean, onion and corn salsa and add avocado slices on top 🙂
I cook an insane amount of vegetables on Sunday so they are ready for the week and also have veggies on hand that are easy to just roast when I am busy. I love using soup as a way to get in veggies, also.
I'm with you and definitely get my veggies in with soups and stir-fries! I also add them to basic meals – pasta dishes, filling burritos, etc. I have yet to try a green smoothie – is that all you have for breakfast? I find I usually don't get full from drinks…
Simply Life – A smoothie is my first breakfast. I have a second breakfast mid-morning 🙂
Great post-i'm constantly trying to find tweaks to getting people to eat more veggies:) I love my green smoothies!
Very good post!! ~
I think for me it was just a matter of trying a lot of different vegetables and finding ones I like. I love roasted brussels and sweet taters but don't care for peas or corn(aka the only vegetables my family likes)
Great list! Need to be paying more attention to all of them nowadays.
Thanks for all the tips! I love any sort of veggie dip and will definitely eat my veggies when presented with some yummy dip!
Great post! I love veggies, but sometimes it's hard to fit in all of the servings!
Wonderful ways to eat more veggies, Megan! I had retired my juicer to the attic a couple of years ago – time to get it back out, I think.
Your avocado dip sounds delicious!
Making smoothies is a great idea. Never done it. Why not now?
These are great tips! I love roasting up a big pan of veggies too – Sunday I made sweet potatoes, carrots, parsnips and onions with just a touch of honey – delish! I also love adding frozen chopped spinach everywhere I can – in pasta, enchiladas, meatloaf!
A great post Megan. A part of this new yr resolution for me is to eat more veggies and post like this are very encouraging!
I do some of these things, too. My son is 6 and likes only a few veggies by themselves, but he'll chow down on them in sauces, soups, and smoothies even if he knows they're in there because he helped make it!
I buy a bunch of kale, use some fresh, and chop and freeze the rest in small portions that we can add to lots of foods. Here are some ways to use kale. It's very convenient because you don't have to thaw before using.
This pasta dish is half to two-thirds veggies.
Loubie is easy to make with canned, fresh, or frozen green beans and tomatoes.
Many kinds of vegetables can be pureed or finely chopped and sneaked into the spaghetti sauce.
Here's to eating more vegetables in 2011!
SMOOTHIES! I drink one almost daily and sneak all sorts of veggies into them–from spinach to pumpkin!
Love all of your delicious ideas. I've tried many of them before and they all worked for me.
I can get my kids to eat anything if it's in a soup. I served a veggie laden soup last night for dinner containing two kinds of sweet potatoes and chayote. No one said a word. If I had served them as sides, though, I would have heard all sorts of complaints.
Great tips! It always seems like I am spot on with my veggie intake, but am lacking in the fruit department. Hope your week is going well!
Thanks for the congrats!! Love your site too 🙂
And I feel like I could have written this post. Those are the same ways i get in more veggies too. I also love veggies roasted over other methods of preparation.
Hi Megan! More ways to eat our veggies are always welcome over here! xo
These are great an informative ways to get eating healthy! It is very hard to eat enough fruits and vegetables daily, but with creative suggestions like these, it can be done and enjoyable.
I REALLY want to try Donielle's avocado aioli!!
I love Trader Joe's for getting extra veggies in. They have so many yummy kinds of frozen veggies its easy to toss them in with something.
Also, when I make pot roast, I make extra veggies with it and eat them as leftovers.
I do the same thing with smoothies, only instead of stopping at spinach, I add frozen veggie cubes that I've pre-made. I've used carrots, butternut squash, tomato and yellow squash. The trick is just adding enough fruit to mask the veggies and if you use sweet veggies, they really can't be tasted. I make smoothies for my friends and AFTER they drink them and compliment me I tell them what all is in the smoothies. They're always shocked to find out they just drank their fruits AND veggies.
Carrots used to be my worst enemy, I hated them. Now, I steam baby carrots (or regular carrots divided into bite size logs) until fairly soft (I feed a toddler), then I mix them with 2tbsp of butter (sorta, I use goodlife spread), and drizzle with organic honey. Ta-Da, honey butter carrots. Bebe and I adore them warm, or leftover in the fridge cold. You may have a recipie like this already on your blog, idk. I found you today, and so far I’ve 11 new recps bookmarked. That it amazing, b/c I tend to be a pickier eater! Thanks so much for the awesome blog. and for sharing. Enjoy my carrot recipie.
What a great idea, thanks for sharing! 🙂
Avocados are commercially valuable and are cultivated in tropical and Mediterranean climates throughout the world. They have a green-skinned, fleshy body that may be pear-shaped, egg-shaped, or spherical. Commercially, it ripens after harvesting. Trees are partially self-pollinating and often are propagated through grafting to maintain a predictable quality and quantity of the fruit…
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