Join Blog Contributor Sarah as she discusses how to have a vegetable with every lunch, dinner, and snack!
In my post, How to Have a Vegetable with Every Breakfast, Sweet and Savory– I gave a lot of suggestions for sweet and savory breakfasts- that just happen to be well balanced and rounded. Items such as smoothies, oatmeal, and pancakes were big topics of discussion. Today, I wanted to share with you ways to add vegetables to the other meals of the day. Now, you may think this is easy. And if so, awesome! But I meal plan, and try to keep our meals as healthy as possible- and keeping them under our budget. The items on this list, maybe not all at once, but with discretion and proper planning can all be used on a strict budget. For example, writing this post- our food budget is $200 a month, for 4 people. Let’s Get to it!
How to Incorporate Vegetables into Everyday Snacks.
Some of my favorite snacks use veggies! Ants on a Log. Basically just Celery sticks, with peanut butter and either chocolate chips, nuts, or raisins on top. Vegetable Chips. Either store bought, or homemade, Vegetable chips can be downright tasty! Granola: My family loves yogurt, but for some reason I only like it in something, or with a crunch on top. (Same as Ice Cream, I know weird. It’s a texture thing.)
BUT! I have successfully made Granola with veggies in it several ways.
Way #1- Add zucchini or carrot shreds, they will dry out in the oven. (Or use dehydrated or Freeze Dried shreds)
Way #2, 3, and 4- And on the blog we have 3 other Granola Recipes.
- Pumpkin Granola. Just yes.
- Granola Cups, Filled with yogurt! (Use veggie puree)
- Sweet veggie granola.
Pro tip: I use baby food sometimes. They have a ton of veggies, usually with fruits. Perfect. Hummus. Dip carrots, or celery in Hummus. Cream Cheese Stuffed Peppers. Stuff these with Cream Cheese, Cottage Cheese, or any soft cheese.
How to Incorporate Vegetables into Lunches and Dinners
Side Dish Vegetables
One way to incorporate Vegetables into Lunches, or Dinners, is to always offer them as a side. I try to offer a protein, a vegetable, and a starch. So here are some great side dishes, using vegetables.
- Use as a Starch substitute in Mashed Potatoes, Macaroni and Cheese. Potato Gratin, Pizza Crust, Grilled Cheese, Rice.
- Make Cheesy Cauliflower
- Grill Cauliflower
- Buffalo Cauliflower
- Steam with butter
- Use to stuff your meat
- Make Salad
- Add to your pasta, or sauce
- Steamed Green Beans
- Green Bean Casserole
- Roasted Carrots
- Raw Carrots
- Diced, Cooked, Carrots
- Grilled Squash
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Vegetables in Soup
I always put Vegetables in my soups.
- Dice Onions, Carrots, and Celery as a Vegetable Base
- Add in Spinach, or other Leafy Greens
- Finely Dice Vegetables such as green beans.
- Make the vegetable the main ingredient and pair with cheese such as Cauliflower or Broccoli Soup
- Make Homemade Tomato Soup
Packed Tomato Soup.
Full recipe here.
Sprinkles on Saturday, January 5, 2019
Vegetables in Casseroles
- Pair Broccoli with Chicken and Cheese, in this Broccoli Chicken Casserole
- Use Carrots in this Food Storage Casserole
- Make the classic Green Bean Casserole, and add Chicken
- Chicken Pot Pie, uses carrots and peas
- Make Chicken Noodle casserole and add onions, carrots, and peas
- Make a Tator Tot Casserole and use Sweet Potato Tots.
- Add Spinach in your Chicken Pasta Bake
- Make a Pizza casserole with Tomatoes!
- Cabbage Casserole
- Add broccoli, cauliflower, or carrots to any casserole recipe and cook til they are soft.
And there ya have it! This should be enough to get you started with incorporating veggies into every lunch, dinner, and snack!
CHIME IN: What are some current ways you incorporate veggies into your meals? If this isn’t a strong suit for you, share how you plan to start! Excited to hear from you!