Gretchen Lidicker is a writer, researcher, and the author of the books CBD Oil Everyday Secrets and Magnesium Everyday Secrets. She has a degree in biology and a masters in physiology with a concentration in complementary and integrative medicine. She's been featured in the New York Times, Marie Claire, Forbes, and Travel & Leisure.
If you’re health-conscious but haven’t quite grown out of your “I hate broccoli” stage, it can feel like a constant battle to eat enough vegetables. If this is you, you’re not alone. When you’re starting to eat more vegetables — especially if your diet’s been short on them — it can be challenging on your tastebuds.
The good news is that you can find a way to love your greens; as long as you’re willing to get a little creative, that is.
Here are four expert hacks that will help you learn to love your greens so you don’t miss out on all the key vitamins and minerals they provide.
Season Well, Then Roast Them
One of the easiest ways to prepare a bunch of vegetables at once is to bake them on a sheet pan. Just be sure to season them generously, especially if you’re working with veggies like zucchini or yellow squash that can be on the blander side. Reach for spices with a nice kick, like paprika, red pepper flakes, turmeric, or chili powder, and don’t be shy when you’re adding them. Go ahead and really spice them up, your taste buds will thank you!
P.S. Don’t forget the salt either. Taste your food as you cook and add in a sprinkle of fine sea salt of pink Himalayan salt (both are high in trace minerals) as you go.
Need some inspiration? Try these Jerk-Style Cauliflower Steaks with cumin, coriander, smoked paprika, and cayenne pepper.
Be Generous With Healthy Fats
Another common mistake when preparing veggies is to skimp on the fat. The result? Everything tastes watery and boring. To avoid this, make sure you cook them in a healthy fat like coconut oil, avocado oil, extra-virgin olive oil or ghee. Ghee is a type of clarified butter that’s been used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine.It tastes just like butter but is lower in milk solids, lactose, and casein than regular butter. Meanwhile, it also contains higher levels of vitamins — like vitamin A, D, and K2—and has a higher smoke point than olive oil and other cooking oils.
If you really want to bump up the flavor, try cooking them in this 4th and Hearth Grass-Fed California Garlic Ghee (12.99).
Turn Your Vegetables Into a Crunchy Snack
At this point, kale chips might feel a little old school, but if you have trouble getting your daily dose of greens, they’re a great option. And it doesn’t just have to be kale, either. As registered dietician-nutritionist and personal trainer, Tammy Lakatos Shames (one half of the duo known as the Nutrition Twins) explained, “Kale is popular, but you can use carrots, beets, turnips — anything you like.” Shames says. Just slice your veggie thinly, mist with oil, and bake until they’re nice and crispy.
Try it: Smoked Paprika Zucchini Chips from the Nutrition Twins.
Add Veggies to Your Smoothies
One way to make eating veggies easier is to add them to your existing meals and routine. Are you a smoothie in the morning kind of person? Consider adding some vegetables to your morning blend. Mild tasting spinach is always a pleasing option but you can also get creative here: For example, try using mild-tasting frozen zucchini or cauliflower as the base of your smoothie in addition (or instead!) of frozen fruit. You might be surprised how little you notice the difference.