yes, they’re all very kid-friendly.
Whether you call yourself a vegetable friend or privately find them repulsive, chances are that you’re not eating enough fresh produce either way. A new research published in the journal found that eating five servings a day of fruits and vegetables may help you live a longer and healthier life.
The good news? If you’re falling short, there are endless easy ways to pack more produce into your diet (yes, even if you’re someone who hates the taste of vegetables).
When thoughtfully executed, the vegetables in these dishes will blend right in and it will be hard to even notice they are there, “The key is choosing the right vegetables, pairing them with the proper cooking method, and finding the right recipe to highlight them in will make all the difference of your view on veggies.”
You can easily mix veggies into your meatballs to add a boost of flavor and nutrients simply finely chop mushrooms, greens, carrots, and onions and mix them into your meatball base. Vegetables like cauliflower or squash can also be cooked and then pureed before being incorporated.
Another slam dunk: Leafy greens like spinach and kale, which will add vibrant green color to the meatballs and pair perfectly with their flavor.
Macaroni and Cheese
A simple hack to add plants into mac and cheese is to squash puree into the cheese sauce. The squash adds an extra creaminess and delicious flavor and boosts the nutrient profile of an otherwise 100 percent cheese base squash provides a boost of beta-carotene, vitamin C, magnesium, and fiber.
For double the veggies, you can also try a cauliflower mac and cheese and swap pasta for cauliflower as a base, as KETO lovers would like it.
“There are many vegetable-infused kinds of pasta on the market now, and mac and cheese is the perfect introductory dish to incorporate them into your diet.”
Instead of using potatoes alone, opt for a blend of potato and pureed cauliflower you (seriously) won’t even taste the difference. You can also get creative and try blending different veggies together, such as cauliflower with sweet potatoes or broccoli with a hint of salted butter.
Think beyond traditional tomatoes and opt for a hearty veggie-boosted version. You can blend in everything from zucchini and squash to kale and carrots (really, any pureed veggies will do) to add more depth and nutrients to your sauce.
Instead of eating an entire serving of regular pasta, do a mix of half pasta and half zucchini noodles, or spaghetti squash. Same goes for fritters, like the cauliflower fritters here.
You can also try mixing regular rice with cauliflower rice for a 50/50 swap, And if you’re short of time, many grocery stores sell pre-made or riced veggies in the produce or frozen section. There are also great options on the market now like lentil-based and chickpea-based pasta.”
Chips and Dip
There are so many creative ways to bulk up your favorite chip dips with veggies. Baba ghanoush (a savory eggplant dip), roasted hummus, and Greek yogurt based spinach dip are all great health forward accompaniments to your chips or crackers.
All of the above can be made at home or easily purchased at a variety of grocery stores.
Muffins and Breads
Shredded carrots, zucchini, yellow squash, and even beets are delicious, vibrant vegetables that can be shredded and folded into any muffin or bread batter.
They provide a little bit of savory flavor and pack nutrients into your breakfast, too. There are many fruit and vegetable pairings that are delicious together (thinking of lemon raspberry bread).
Veggie noodles have been the latest craze, but what about veggie pasta sheets? Butternut squash, zucchini, and eggplant can be thinly sliced to mimic lasagna pasta sheets.
If you can’t give up the pasta entirely we get it simply add these veggie sheets to your lasagna, along with the sauce and cheese layers.
Turns out, vegetables are a lot more versatile than we often give them credit for. You can slip them into just about anything you’re making for dinner and lunch, boosting the health value of meals for you and your companions.