All to often I see people who think they’re getting enough vegetables, but in reality they’re falling short. Vegetables are packed with so many vitamins and minerals that our bodies need to function properly, but often people dismiss them because they are not as tasty, or take too long to prepare. Maybe they’re a bit too costly and just don’t light up our taste buds the way that other junk foods are made to do.
We should aim to get in at least five servings of vegetables a day. I know that may seem like a lot, but your body needs the fuel. Just remember, two fist fulls a day of the good green stuff will keep the body happy. That is not going to happen in just one meal, but if you can make some tweaks here and there by adding veggies where you wouldn’t think to, it can really add up to make a difference.
Here are some simple and tasty tips to boost up your vegetable intake with some healthy snacks!
- Make a Pesto Based on Spinach or even Kale – beautiful basil makes a very tasty pesto, but why not add some kale or spinach to the mix? As the basil is so strong, you won’t even taste the extra greens in there.
- Try Microherbs – micro herbs pack up to four times the nutrients than other green leaves, plus they can be easily grown at home. Just sprinkle some over crackers with dip or any savory topping.
- Grate Vegetables into Homemade Muffins – I love making muffins, and will add some grated zucchini, kumara and even carrot to add some extra veg. They come out delicious and naturally sweet!
- Cauliflower Dip – who would have thought that you can make a dip just using a head of steamed cauliflower? Blend one head with 1/2 cup of lemon juice, 2 cloves garlic, 1/2 cup of yogurt (natural and unsweetened) and salt. It makes for a super creamy and tasty dish, and cauliflower is what makes most of it!
- Veggie Juice – I love juicing a few times a week, and as soon as that beautiful nectar hits my tongue I immediately feel wonderful! I prefer to have mine first thing in the morning, (why not veggies for breakfast)? All those nutrients are absorbed very quickly, and I find it wards off any sweet cravings throughout the day.
- Peanut Butter and what… – I grew up having celery with peanut butter and raisans, (it was called ants on a log). Amazingly, it tastes delicious and so does carrot sticks with peanut butter – try it!
- Delightful Dip – roast some capsicum, onion, pumpkin, onion and garlic. Then blend together with walnuts, extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, cumin and honey, (optional). It’s a tasty dip with your favourite cracker.
- Green Powder – for clients of mine that don’t like vegetables I suggest getting a green powder. These powders are packed with so much deliciousness for the body. My favourite is Nuzest Good Green Stuff. Add it to a smoothie first thing in the morning with a banana and some unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk and berries – divine!
- Vegetable Chips – anyone who has ‘liked’ my Facebook page knows that I love using vegetables to make chips. It’s so simple and so tasty that even kids will love them. You can use kale, beetroot or kumara. If using kale then remove the stems, wash well and dry, then toss lightly in some olive oil and salt. Bake for ten minutes on 175, (depending on oven). Beetroot and kumara chips you do the same, but slice very thinly.
- Leftover Juice Pulp – so, what do you do with all the pulp left when you juice? Well, you can use it to make muffins or even add it to bliss balls. All that fiber helps bind those tasty balls together as well as add some color and flavour to muffins. So, there you have it. Some easy ways to get more vegetables into your diet adding to your daily total. Your body will thank you for it.