You need to eat your vegetables for good health, but that can be easier said than done. Even if you really like the taste of veggies—which many people don’t—it can be hard to get the recommended amounts into your day. That’s where the concept of hiding them in other foods comes in. You can sneak veggies into just about anything you’re making, boosting the health value of meals for you and your family—and the pickiest of eaters won’t even taste them.
Add zucchini or carrots to breakfast baked goods such as muffins. Try scrambling your eggs with minced broccoli or grated cauliflower. These additions don’t change the texture of your eggs, and they give you your daily dose of anti-cancer cruciferous veggies. Try adding canned pumpkin puree to pancakes.
Add extra greens to a fruit smoothie. A large bunch of raw spinach will wilt down to nothing and the taste is easily hidden if you add other naturally sweet ingredients, especially pineapple and banana.
Bulk up ground meat with carrot puree or chopped mushrooms. Or replace burgers with grilled portobello mushrooms. Choose Mexican-style tacos or quesadillas: Cut the cheese in half, and add lots of corn, onions, peppers, spinach, beans, and salsa.
Soups, stews, and casseroles
Thicken soup and add vegetables with pureed tomatoes, carrots, sweet potato, butternut squash, beans, and greens. Add corn, extra tomatoes, onions, garlic, and peppers to chili. Cauliflower, pumpkin, butternut squash, and carrots are all excellent additions to macaroni and cheese. The colors blend with the traditional dish and provide a nice nutrition boost.
Baked goods and desserts
Greens can be pureed and added into cake and brownie batter. Beets make a great addition to chocolate cake—the cocoa flavor disguises the beet’s earthy flavor; plus the beets add sweetness. Sweet breads can be made using zucchini. Cookie batter does well with pureed pumpkin. Dark chocolate brownies taste great with added pureed beans.
Instead of potato chips, try making kale chips. You get all the crunch and a huge nutrition boost. Zucchini is an incredibly versatile, mild-tasting vegetable that can be transformed into a variety of snacks. Zucchini chips are super simple to make. Slice and season with salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese; then bake in a hot oven until deeply golden and crisp.
Add canned pumpkin to pasta sauce for large amounts of vitamin A to sustain sharp eyesight, the antioxidant beta-carotene to fight cancer, and vitamin C to maintain a healthy immune system.