Monday, March 19, 2012

Get Creative with Your Vegetables

Written by Kristen DeAngelis
Part of National Nutrition Month 2012

Sometimes it can be a challenge to introduce new veggies to your plate. It takes consistency, variety, cooking methods and patience. Did you know it takes 15 times to try something new before your tongue decides if it likes it or not? While adding new ingredients to your plate here are some helpful ways to get the extra nutrition from vegetables through foods you already love:
-          Pasta Sauce – shred carrots, zucchini, red pepper, mushrooms and add to your average tomato sauce to serve over pasta

- Lasagna – spinach, broccoli, bell peppers, zucchini, carrots

- Chili and meat loaf (chop/dice peppers, onion, carrot, cabbage)

- Hamburger: Puree cooked squash and carrots or finely chop mushrooms/peppers/onion to add small amounts to ground beef/turkey

- Stir-Fry – add as many vegetables to chicken/beef/seafood

- Muffins/quick breads (grated carrots, zucchini, mashed squash, sweet potatoes)

- Soup - sneak leftover vegetables into your favorite soup (mushroom, celery, peppers, onions, etc.)

- Burrito/Fajitas - Use wraps to hide all that is inside - mash up beans to spread with sautéed vegetables and cheese. Heat for a disguised “fast-food burrito”

- Frittata/Omelet – spinach, tomato, onion, mushroom, olives,

- Melt cheese on top of vegetables before serving

o Broccoli and cheese

o Homemade vegetable pizza

- Dips – use celery/carrots/pepper slices to dip into

- Salsa – add extra bell peppers/onions to use for spicing up any combination of foods

Remember, not all vegetables have to be served bland and alone … spice them up with new spices, marinades, and by throwing into any combination of foods! As always though, beware of trapping your veggies with too much fatty dressings, cheese, or extra grease from the foods you prepare. You will be surprised where you can hide and get in your extra serving of veggies!


Asparagus tips. (2010). [Web Photo]. Retrieved from

Chopped tomatoes. (2010). [Web Photo]. Retrieved from 

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