Vegetables are good for us, without question. However, they are probably the last thing you drool over in a buffet line, crave for a midnight snack, or request for your birthday dinner. Why is that? Likely it’s because many vegetables have a bitter component to them that many people find unpalatable. But these same veggies are often loaded with vitamins, minerals, fiber and plant-based compounds that fight disease. So how to learn to love them more?
1.) Start with what you do like. Maybe it’s jalapenos and avocados. maybe those are the only two green things that you are willing to eat. Great! Start there are make sure that you eat both of them every day. Make tacos, make salsa and guac and salads. And then when you’re tired of these two, try adding into another vegetable. You’ve already made them a daily habit so it will be easier to experiment with another vegetable and the change will be refreshing!
2.) Try roasting them. Roasting vegetables, especially cauliflower, broccoli, onions, carrots and squash, brings out their sweetness as they caramelize and brown. A sprinkle of sea salt and maybe a splash of lemon juice is all it takes to make roasted vegetables very crave-worthy.
3.) Blend them in. Add vegetables to smoothies! Any fruit, chocolate or protein powder you add will mask the taste of some vegetables. Frozen cauliflower is a good one to try, and spinach is undetectable in most smoothies.
4.) Eat them raw. My kids taught me this. They enjoy snacking on many vegetables raw that they won’t consider eating cooked. Raw vegetables have a nice crisp snap to them, and a clean sweet flavor. Try carrots, snap peas, celery and broccoli. Keep them handy in the fridge for easy snacking.
5.) Commit to them. Once you do find a new way that you enjoy vegetables, make some space on your plate for them at every meal. It will become a habit and the more you experiment with and learn to like vegetables, the more you will eat!