Wondering how to eat more vegetables, or maybe just get your kids to eat them? We all know the importance of proper nutrition, but trying to get 3 to 5 servings a day can seem overwhelming. Let these ten easy ways to eat more vegetables help you meet your goal.
How To Eat More Vegetables
1. Make salsa. Technically ‘salsa’ is any sauce, but let’s not get caught up in technical details. Instead, think of vegetable salsa as a chance to eat chips! Making salsa is simple: dice some tomatoes, red and green bell peppers, and red onion. Add a minced, seeded jalapeno, some olive oil and a splash of red vinegar or freshly-squeezed lime juice. Stir in some fresh cilantro or parsley then season with salt and pepper and chill for an hour to let the flavors meld.
2. Breakfast for dinner (or breakfast): Saute mushrooms, onions, and kale or spinach then stuff them into an omelet. Or mound them in your skillet and make a few dents on the top with the back of a wooden spoon. Crack an egg into each dent, turn down the heat and cover the skillet until the egg whites are set. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper, and tell your family you’re serving Eggs in the Grass.
3. Smoothies: Blend some canned pumpkin, a banana, some pumpkin pie seasoning, and milk to make a delicious smoothie that tastes like a dessert. Feeling more adventurous? Blend 2 cups raw baby spinach, a banana, a small container of vanilla yogurt and some water. No, really: it shocked me how delicious this tasted, and even my son enjoyed it despite the incredibly bright green color!
4. A Salad Bar In Your Fridge Wrap washed and torn lettuce in paper towels and store it in an air-tight container in your fridge. Chop your favorite salad veggies (remove seeds from tomatoes and cucumbers), and stash them in separate containers, too. Serve your “salad bar” before dinner, letting everyone put together their favorite combination. Top with your favorite homemade salad dressing. (Check out these tips for making a salad last all week.)
6. Serve ’em as Snacks Instead of telling your kids not to snack before dinner why not encourage them in a healthy way? Just mound a platter with celery sticks, baby carrots, sliced radishes, chopped bell peppers, grape tomatoes, and even fresh green beans. It’s a Happy Hour you can feel good about.
8. Homemade Veggie Chips There are recipes all over the internet for homemade kale chips, and I’ve yet to find one I didn’t like. You can make homemade baked chips out of most root vegetables, too. Just slice thinly, toss with a small amount of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake at 375°F for 10-15 minutes until the edges begin to brown.
9. Serve Up Soup Summer is an excellent time for cold soups like gazpacho, chilled beet soup, and even Vichyssoise (cold potato soup). Or try this Lettuce Soup! Want something hot? Carrot and Bacon Soup is always a hit.
10. Put ’em On Pizza Go the mini-pizza route by topping English muffins with pizza sauce, chopped vegetables, and cheese, or make your own pizza dough. Worried your kids will refuse to eat when they see the vegetables? Then put the veg on before the sauce — what they don’t see won’t make them complain. After all, who doesn’t like pizza?