You know you’re supposed to eat lots of vegetables but do you? Here’s inspiration on how to eat more vegetables including 78 healthy, gluten free, dairy free vegetable recipes to get you started.
Ever since I was a kid, I was told to eat my vegetables. I didn’t like to be told to do much when I was a kid, or ok, even now if I’m being honest. Being told to eat my vegetables immediately made me not want to eat them at all. Anyone with me?
I went through a period of protest where I wanted nothing to do with vegetables. As you can probably tell by all of the healthy vegetable recipes that are now on Tasting Page, that phase is over. I’m the one now telling you to eat more vegetables.
Don’t be mad. I’m not going to make you eat vegetables that you don’t like. There’s so many out there, that I’m sure you can find some that you like to add into your diet. In fact, I have 78 healthy vegetable recipes for inspiration to get you started.
The Health Benefits of Eating Vegetables
So you know that you’re supposed to eat vegetables but do you know why? In case you need a refresher, here are a few compelling reasons to eat these 78 healthy vegetable recipes.
A meta-analysis of studies that followed almost a half million people showed that, “a higher consumption of fruit and vegetables is associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality, particularly cardiovascular mortality.” Less death is a big win in my book.
Other studies have shown that eating more than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day reduced the risk of heart disease by approximately 20%.
Not only is eating more vegetables good for your ticker, but it may also help prevent weight gain, as well as the onset of certain cancers.
Vegetables are a nutrient dense food. They’re low in calories and high in vitamins. Some of these vitamins are water soluble, which means they aren’t stored in the body so they need to be consumed daily. You’re not done after one weekly salad!
You’ll find a lot of fiber in most vegetables. Fiber can aid digestion and ensure that you have regular bowel movements. It’s very important to keep things moving in your body!
Leafy greens have also be shown to be especially helpful in lowering the risk of cancers. Many are rich in antioxidants which can aid the heart, and also decrease blood sugar levels to prevent cell damage.
The brain also gets a boost from eating your leafy greens. Your whole body gets a benefit from eating more vegetables.
How Many Vegetable Servings to Target
The World Health Organization recommends eating more than 400 grams of fruits and vegetables each day. They started the ”5 a Day” initiative in 2000, encouraging people to eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Many, including me, think people should even eat more vegetables than that.
I think you should try and double this number. Shoot to cover half of your plate with vegetables at every meal.
What’s also beneficial about eating this many vegetables, besides ALL of the health benefits above, is that when your plate is filled with that many vegetables, you don’t have as much room for starchy carbs and other heavy, unhealthy food.
How to Eat More Vegetables
Start first thing with a vegetable-laden morning. Veggies aren’t just for dinner. One sure fire way I get a lot of vegetables right out of the gate is to make a veggie based smoothie. I combine 3-4-5 veggies together for a burst of natural energy in the am. Just be sure to go easy on the fruit so it doesn’t turn into a sugar-bomb, sending your blood sugar on a roller coaster it will be on all day.
Breakfast Vegetable Recipes
I’m a big fan of warm vegetables at breakfast. If you have a weak digestive system like I do, putting something cold in your body first thing can be a bit jarring. These warm vegetable recipes will gently wake your digestive fires up and keep you energized until lunch.
Vegetables make a great healthy snack. You can eat them raw as is or use them in place of a chip to dip into your favorite hummus. I have a few beanless hummus recipes below for my sensitive digesters. I also incorporate vegetables into crackers, so you can double down on your veggie intake from both the cracker and dip.
Vegetable Loaded Salads
Salads are an obvious and easy way to eat more vegetables. I’ve got loads of them - cold, hot, sauteed, and grilled!
Vegetable Side Dishes
Many people may call vegetables a side dish but since they usually fill up more than half my plate, it can be the main attraction. There’s so many fun ways to eat more vegetables. Pick a new favorite each week.
Vegetable Based Soups
Another easy, not to mention tasty, way to eat more vegetables is to blend them into soup. I’ve been loving doing this in the Instant Pot for an effortless, hands-off meal but you can also make these healthy recipes on the stovetop, no problem.
Vegetable Main Dishes
Vegetables can be the star of your meal with some of these vegetable-centric main dishes. Stuff a sweet potato with your favorite greens, or layer them on top of a cauliflower pizza crust. The options are endless!
One of my favorite ways to eat more vegetables is to make veggie noodles. I make these gluten free noodles with everything from zucchini to sweet potatoes and carrots.