Nothing quite compares to the benefits you receive from eating vegetables that are rich in antioxidants and nutrients. Here are eight easy ways to include them in your everyday diet.
If being healthy is a part of your New year’s resolution, a great start is adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Steer clear of processed foods, and make way for brightly colored and flavored produce.
Fill Your Grocery List and Cart with Fresh (or Frozen) Produce
Before making your grocery list, you must plan out your meals—otherwise, how else will you know what to purchase at the supermarket? Be sure to include a vegetable option (cooked or raw) for every meal you make.
When you make your grocery list for the week, always be sure to add greens and other produce to the top of your list. This ensures that you will start a grocery trip on the produce side of the market, and in turn, fill most of your cart with fresh food products.
We also understand how expensive fresh produce can be, which is why frozen is your next most suitable option. However, once you start replacing chips, cookies, and other processed foods with fresh produce, it nearly evens out in price, yet you’ll be rich with health.
Fill Half of Your Plate with Veggies
You’ve already taken care of your meal planning and grocery shopping, so now you know each of your dinner meals includes veggies. Next, of course, is making your meal and a plate for yourself.
According to ChooseMyPlate, you should make half your plate vegetables and fruits while varying which plants you choose each meal. Having a variety of vegetables each week offers your body multiple different vitamins, minerals, and health benefits.
Add Cauliflower to Pretty Much Anything
You’ve likely already heard about the many ways this cruciferous vegetable can be eaten, but have you tried it for yourself? Cauliflower pizza crust is a popular one, but you can also purchase this vegetable already chopped up and add it to mashed potatoes, rice bowls, or quinoa.
Riced cauliflower can be pureed and blended into a soup to add body and texture to each spoonful. Also, try finely chopping it, then adding it to a casserole dish.
Each bite of cauliflower is full of fiber and B-Vitamins and can be hidden in so many meals, so be sure to try any of these exciting ideas. It’s a great way to add more veggies into you and your family’s diet without anyone, even knowing.
Homemade Veggie Burgers Actually Taste Amazing
Many people steer clear from veggie burgers because they aren’t a fan of the taste, and when you want a burger, well, you want a burger. Store-bought frozen veggie burgers usually don’t offer the same palate-friendly appeal that a homemade patty will.
With the right recipe, you can truly make one hell of a burger that is both packed with nutrients and tastes fantastic too. By following the perfect veggie burger formula, depending on your preferences, you’ll create your version of the perfect patty and become hooked.
Check out the secret formula for the perfect veggie burger—we’ve been using it for years, and they come out perfect every time. Freeze them for later and eat over time.
Blend Vegetables into a Smoothie or Shake
Adding vegetables to a smoothie or protein shake is a great way to get them into your diet without even tasting it. For this method, purchase from the frozen section and save a few bucks. Frozen veggies will last longer and provide a frothier and chillier taste in each sip. And while you’re planning for frozen veggies, don’t overlook this easy tip—next time you have fresh fruit on hand that is getting a bit too ripe a bit too fast, chop it up and throw it in your freezer. It’ll be ready for a smoothie when you are!
As far as Vegetables go, options like spinach, cucumber, riced cauliflower, and butternut squash all taste great in a fruit smoothie—you don’t even know they’re there.
Substitute Pasta with Veggies
We get it—you love pasta and noodles, and so do we. However, substituting zoodles or spaghetti squash for some of your pasta is always a great way to incorporate more nutrients and vitamins.
Next time you make spaghetti for dinner, only boil half the amount of pasta and substitute the other half with zucchini noodles. Make freshly steamed zoodles on the side and add them to your pasta right before serving.
If you’ve got lasagna on your brain, substitute thinly sliced zucchini or summer squash. Switch out the chicken parmesan and try making eggplant parmesan for a change. It’s delicious all on its own but also tastes fantastic with spaghetti squash.
Prepare a Veggie Platter to Munch on Throughout the Week
Before your workweek begins, prepare a veggie platter, just as if you were taking it to a get-together. Raw vegetables are easy to prepare and retain a lot of nutrients without the heat of cooking breaking them down.
When you are craving a crunchy snack, you’ll open your fridge to a gorgeous array of colorful and vibrant vegetables. If you need extra flavor, dip them in balsamic vinaigrette or hummus.
Beyond Meatless Monday: Have Two No-Meat Meals Per Week
Meatless Monday has become a dietary trend both among people looking to eat less meat and those trying to incorporate more vegetables into their diet. If you are hoping for an extra boost of wholesome nutrition, try having vegetarian meals twice a week.
The best way is by thinking about the foods you love most and looking for a substitute. We pretty much guarantee that somewhere on the internet, you will find a veggie version of that meal you crave most. Try making vegetarian pizza, tacos, sandwiches, casseroles, and pasta meals—the list goes on and on.
To ensure you are eating enough protein, try adding beans, lentils, nuts, and vegetables that are protein-rich as it is an essential building block for your body.
This post was written by Emilee Unterkoefler and was first posted to www.lifesavvy.com
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