Most of us are aware of the daily recommended intake of vegetables for an average adult: 2.5 to 3 cups per day. If you’re one of the many Americans who are struggling to meet the daily dose of veggies, but you’re not a fan of just tossing an extra pile of broccoli on your plate, try a few of our quick ‘sneaky’ ways to incorporate more vegetables into your meals and snacks.
- Adding Greens to smoothies: Leafy greens are easy to blend into a smoothie and are barely noticeable in this form. Try adding a handful of baby spinach or kale to your next smoothie for a boost of vitamins and minerals. The taste is easily hidden when adding a ripe, sweet banana or frozen fruit.
- Build a rainbow in your salad: Hitting up the salad bar for lunch? Try adding one vegetable from each color of the rainbow atop your leafy greens. This will help add extra servings of veggies to your meal, while adding to the visual appeal of your lunch.
- Fill your sandwiches: Lettuce, tomato, and onion are not the only sandwich-friendly veggies out there. Try adding shredded carrots for some crunch, thinly sliced cucumber for a refreshing vibe, some thinly sliced sweet bell peppers for a boost of flavor or avocado for a delicious and creamy finish. People also swear by adding cilantro, bean sprouts or radish- excellent addition to soft cheeses and egg mayo.
- Add cooked veggies to sauces: Making a cheese sauce for macaroni? Roast some butternut squash and blend it right in with the sauce for a hidden veggie that adds a boost of vitamins, minerals and fiber along with a rich, creamy consistency! What about a red tomato sauce with fresh herbs? Add a handful of chopped baby spinach or chopped zucchini with your fresh herbs and no one in the house will even notice this sneaky veggie mixed right into their Italian pasta dinner. Bell peppers, Spinach, Zucchini or even eggplants – you can easily chop and toss into a prepared Thai or Indian sauce, paired with a rice of choice.
- Try “veggie rice” as a side dish: Try making veggie rice from fresh cauliflower or broccoli, or try the pre-made frozen versions for an extra veggie-filled side dish disguised as a grain.