We have all been told to eat our veggies, and in the RENEW program, we are encouraging you to fill half of your plate with vegetables. But what if you don’t like them?
This comprehensive guide lays out all the steps you need to make vegetables a delicious addition to your meals.
Choose Them Wisely
Vegetables taste best when they are in season and at their peak freshness. Check out this seasonal produce guide to inspire your next grocery visit. Shopping at farmer’s markets is one way to find good quality vegetables.
Another option is to buy frozen, unseasoned vegetables from the supermarket if you feel the fresh produce is subpar. Canned vegetables also work, but make sure to buy the low-sodium option stored in a BPA-free can.
We encourage you to try vegetables in new ways, even if you didn’t like them in previous settings. However, if you are sure you don’t like a certain vegetable, try swapping it for a similar vegetable option.
The table below is a guide for making those swaps.
Prep to Perfection
After giving your vegetables a good cleaning, the next step is to prepare them for seasoning and cooking. Veggies are versatile and can complement our meals in many forms.
Check out some preparation ideas in the table below. Also consider buying veggies pre-cut to save you some time in the kitchen.
Give Them Flavor
Gone are the days of bland, overcooked vegetables. With the right seasonings vegetables can become the star of the plate. Begin experimenting with the seasonings listed in the table below.
Change Their State
Some veggies are delicious raw, while others taste better with some preparation. Different cooking methods intensify natural flavors and will determine the texture of the vegetable.
Roasting: Brings out the natural sweetness. Softens and gives a crisp texture.
Sautéing: Quickest cooking method. Allows vegetables to caramelize and brown, which deepens flavors.
Grilling: Adds a depth of smokiness. Best for sturdy vegetables that won’t fall through the grate, such as portabella mushrooms, asparagus, bell peppers, zucchini, squash, potatoes, corn, eggplant, onion, etc.
Putting It All Together
Time to put these tips into action! Here are some ideas to get you started:
Shred kale and massage with olive oil and lemon juice to use as a base for a salad.
Mince bell peppers and mushrooms. Saute until cooked and stir into a pasta sauce.
Add riced cauliflower to brown rice. Toss in a pan with soy sauce, rice vinegar and garlic to make a delicious stir fry base.
Slice cucumber, tomato, onion and bell pepper. Store in airtight containers in the refrigerator to use with dips, sandwiches or salads for the next few days.
Chop broccoli and cauliflower into even pieces. Toss with 1 teaspoon avocado oil, paprika, black pepper and oregano, then roast until golden. Serve throughout the week with meals.
Freeze spinach, kale, or chopped zucchini that are starting to wilt. Blend them into smoothies for a hidden veggie boost.
Roast an eggplant with tomatoes and garlic cloves. Blend it up with basil, olive oil and red chili flakes to make a flavorful spread for sandwiches.
Here are a few more recipe ideas from our website!
You would never believe this delicious dip uses
an entire eggplant!
Use up your cooked or raw veggies at the end of
the week by making a nourish bowl.
A perfect option for batch cooking or for low
maintenance, delicious meals.
Download the pdf version below:
Tips for preparing vegetables to perfection