It still annoys me when I see a recipe that has only 1-2 vegetables included (i.e. beef stroganoff has onion and mushroom). When you think about it, you are only hungry a few times per day (for most people it’s 2-6 times per day). This is your only opportunity to give your body nutrition. We need to choose wisely. See below for my four tips on how to add more vegetables to your diet (as well as which vegetables are better):
- Enjoy vegetables that are in season; vegetables that are in season are generally the freshest (the quickest to go from farm to shelf). This means that they should have the highest nutrient retention rate, and thus provide the best health benefits to you. The best way to know what vegetables are in season is to see what vegetables are on special – these are generally the vegetables that are in abundance.
- Go to the farmers market. Not only is this another way to see what vegetables are in season, but it is an effective way to get fresher vegetables, local vegetables, and quite possibly pesticide free vegetables.
- Simply add more vegetables to the recipe – not sure on which ones? See below for my pairing suggestions.
- Onion goes with almost anything – it’s generally not considered optional in my house
- Carrots, celery and onion
- Mushroom, spinach, tomato
- Tomato, eggplant, zucchini, mushroom
- Broccoli, tomato, capsicum, beans
- Broccoli, cauliflower, carrot
- When you are in the shops next, look around. Combine whatever vegetables are in season and there is about an 85% success rate of it tasting delicious.
- Hide your veggies. Blend, grate or mash vegetables into your meals. When the vegetables are cut or mashed so small it can often sneak in without significantly changing the taste of the meal. Perfect for fussy eaters.
Other ways to get more vegetables into your diet include:
- Snack on veggies (raw celery, cucumber, carrot, etc.)
- Turn veggies into noodles or rice (carrots and zucchini work well as noodles, cauliflower works well as a rice)
- Juice your veggies – just do it with a nutri-bullet/ninja – a machine that keeps the fibres with the juice
- Experiment with your veggies. Be bold, be brave, it’s only vegetables.