How to Start Liking Vegetables
Believe it or not, there was a time once when the only vegetables I would eat were potatoes and broccoli, masked in the form of french fries and broccoli-cheese casserole. Nevertheless, as I aged, I knew it wasn’t always appropriate to be so picky when it comes to eating vegetables, so I learned to tolerate them in small doses here and there. But if you know me at all, even to this day, if there is an opportunity to order “fries” as the side “vegetable”, I will be ordering them (lol.)
Fast forward to today. I’m eating a big ol’ plate of vegetables for lunch, and I’m actually enjoying them! So what changed? How did I go from tolerating vegetables to craving vegetables?
How To Start Eating More Vegetables,
and Enjoying Them
Start with the vegetables you already enjoy
If you’re like me and have an affinity towards fries (or potatoes), then start there! Just try out different ways of eating them; a baked potato, sweet potato, skillet potatoes, oven-baked home-made fries, etc. Eventually, add in small amounts of more vegetables next to the ones you’re already enjoying!
Try partaking in “Meatless Monday”
Honestly, I believe a large part of the reason I started loving veggies is because I went plant-based. I must note, I was a vegetarian throughout high school but still rarely ate vegetables - the difference this time in my plant-based journey was my intention set on health. When I removed meat and dairy from my diet, the only thing left to eat was vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds! It forced me to get creative and try new things, most of which, I ended up thoroughly enjoying and even craving.
By partaking in Meatless Monday (or choosing any day of the week to go meat-free), you will subtly be pushed to make more plant-focused meals.
Drink More Smoothies
A REALLY easy way to add in some leafy greens is to toss some into your smoothie! If you’re not a huge fan of spinach or kale, add a handful into a fruit smoothie! You won’t even taste it, and there’s something strangely empowering about drinking a green smoothie.
TIP: In my opinion, leafy greens blend best with berry-based smoothies. However, I do like adding spinach in with a peach-based smoothie. It sounds an odd combo, but it works!
Add Vegetables Into A Meal You Usually Eat Without Them
An example is spaghetti - most people probably eat spaghetti with marinara sauce, or spaghetti and meatballs. An easy example here would be to add in some spinach, mushrooms, or sauteed asparagus! If you like grilled cheese sandwiches, try adding spinach and tomatoes next time. Get creative and add some veggies into a meal you already enjoy!
TIP: Some of my favorite veggie infused dishes are:
- Spaghetti with marinara sauce; add in sauteed mushrooms or grilled broccoli with a sprinkle of nutritional yeast
- Stir fry with broccoli, red bell pepper, and a GF soy, ginger based sauce; add in some chestnuts and snap peas and eat with a side of brown rice or quinoa
- skillet potatoes for breakfast; add in kale, mushrooms, onions, green onions, chives, and anything else you enjoy!
- Pizza; I love topping my pizza to the max with veggies: broccoli, artichoke hearts, spinach, kale, tomatoes, bell peppers, mushrooms, etc. Just go crazy with that!
Eat More Soup!
If you don’t like soup, this probably doesn’t really help you (sorry!)
As for me, I love soup almost as much as I love my morning cup of tea or coffee. I could literally eat soup for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and be satisfied (I don’t though, because ya girl needs more calories and protein than that).
If you enjoy a good bowl of soup every now and then, making soups is a fantastic way to eat more vegetables. Start with a base you enjoy (vegetable broth, tomato-based broth, or cream-based broth), load up the veggies, and add your seasonings and you’re good to go!
TIP: My favorite soup right now is an Italian Kale Soup: I will make an official recipe post soon, as for now, it’s made with vegetable broth, carrots, zucchini, mushrooms, LOTS of kale, nutritional yeast, Italian herbs, salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. YUM.
Finally, be adventurous!
If you don’t love the taste of a vegetable the first time you try it, be open to trying it cooked another way. I used to hate brussel sprouts until I tried them roasted! Sometimes, you just gotta try something a few times cooked in different ways to figure out if you enjoy it or not!
Happy eating, friends!