We all know that eating our greens is important to maintain a healthy diet. Remember that your diet consists of whatever you eat daily; whether it’s healthy or not is going to depend on your choices. Green, leafy vegetables are the ones that you should eat regularly to improve your health as recommended by nutritionists. They are full of mineral, vitamins, and fibers. But unless you are a rabbit you are not going to just eat the green leaves and think they are delicious, right? That’s why using your greens in versatile ways makes it a lot easier and much more tolerable to eat them and also enjoy them.
I have two young children and for the most part they eat all the greens I serve them. The reason why they eat them is because a) I make the vegetables tasty and b) I don’t give them a second choice. It may sound harsh, but believe me, the younger you get them started the easier it gets with time. So here are some different ways to incorporate greens in our weekly routine:
1. Eat them fresh in salads: this is the most common way to eat your greens, however choosing the right greens, combining them with other colorful vegetables, adding a crunch and a great vinaigrette makes all the difference. Try any of these combinations: Arugula, roasted beets, goat cheese & whole wheat toasted bread crumbs. Spinach, red onions, white beans & feta cheese. Lettuce, strawberries, feta & almonds. Watercress, radishes, fennel & hazelnuts.
2. Sauté your greens: a little bit of extra virgin olive oil and a clove of garlic can turn any greens into the perfect side dish. Try kale, spinach, beet tops, collard greens, Bok choy or Swiss chard: in a sauté pan heat one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, add 4 cups of the greens of your choice and one clove of garlic minced, stir until it starts to wilt down, season with salt & pepper to taste, serve warm.
3. Wrap them up: swap flour tortillas for lettuce and turn your taco night into lettuce wrap night. Use buttercup lettuce to wrap your taco meat, chicken or fish … top with fresh salsa and avocado.
4. Drink your greens: That’s right! Make a juice using products like Athletic Greens powder to start your day full of energy. Try not to use sugar; instead use the sweetness of fruit and if you must, use a natural sweetener like honey or agave. Try these combinations: Kale, carrots, apple and lemon. Kale, cucumber and apple. Spinach, carrots, apple, celery and lemon. I don’t have a fancy juicer. I combine all the ingredients in my blender and add water to help the process, then pass the juice through a mesh strainer and refrigerate.
5. Make a frittata: When I have a lot of veggies and need to use them soon I make a frittata for dinner. You can try, kale, arugula, spinach or Swiss chard. In a sauté pan, cook 1 diced onion and 1 minced garlic clove in a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. When it turns translucent, add 4 beaten eggs, 2 cups of greens, slices of red pepper, salt & pepper to taste and cook until the edges start to turn brown. Top with cheddar cheese and place under the broiler until the cheese is melted. Serve warm with a green salad on the side.
Do you have any other ideas to eat more greens? Leave your comments below.
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