More Vegetables Please: How To Make Vegetables More Palatable
Everyone knows that vegetables are a major constituent of a healthy diet. In fact, vegetables are so important that it’s impossible to find an eating plan that doesn’t include copious quantities of veg. There’s plenty of research to back the nutritional insistence on veg up, too. Vegetables are nutrient-dense, packed with fiber, and contain a myriad of benefits, potentially cancer-fighting chemicals. Vegetables are definitely the good guys, so, more vegetables please.
But they’re… well… okay, let’s be honest: vegetables aren’t particularly nice to eat.
Now, of course, this isn’t going to apply to some of you. You’re going to read the above and roll your eyes; of course, vegetables are nice! They’re delicious and good for you! If you fall into that category, then that’s fine, continue on as you are.
However, if you fall into the category of people who dislike the taste of almost all vegetables, is it possible to eat healthily? Can you forsake vegetables from your diet due to your dislike of them? (Quick answer to that one: no.) Is there anything you can do to try and make veg more palatable to you?
Let’s explore all of these in depth.
Yes, You Do Need Vegetables
If you’re hoping for a free pass and a promise that you don’t need vegetables, sorry, but you’re not going to get it. A healthy diet needs to comprise of vegetables in one form or another. There are very few ways around this. Vegetables are hugely beneficial, carry a wide variety of nutrients, and have very few calories. Finding a way to incorporate them into your diet despite your dislike for them is fairly essential.
That doesn’t mean you have to steam some cauliflower and sit eating it, feeling more and more miserable by the moment. Disliking vegetables isn’t something you have chosen; in fact, life would be much easier if you could just convince yourself that vegetables are every bit as tasty as a nice juicy steak.
You don’t need to force yourself to eat vegetables and be miserable. There are always workarounds; ways and means that can ensure you get the nutrients, but without offending your tastebuds. Here are a few methods that any veg-phobics should consider.
#1 – Try Adding Cheese Or Healthy Fats (Such As Oil)
If you don’t like the taste of vegetables, then the first thing you should try is to stop tasting the vegetables. Drown them out by adding cheese or experimenting with healthy fats. Trying this not only makes your meal even richer in nutrients but pairing the vegetables with something delicious that you want to eat might be enough to overpower your dislike.
Why not try a cauliflower cheese recipe as a starter? The taste of the cauliflower is drastically covered by the sauce, allowing you to focus on the part you like rather than the cauliflower lurking beneath. Many veg-phobes find themselves able to eat and enjoy cauliflower cheese, so it’s definitely a good place to begin.
#2 – Find The Vegetables You Like
The most nutritious vegetables are all well and good, but if you don’t like them, then skip them. The truth is that the veg that is the most health-beneficial is also some of the hardest to enjoy; leafy greens like spinach and kale don’t really hold much attraction to a veg-phobe.
So rather than eating what you should be eating, why not focus on eating the vegetables you do like? Sure, they might not be as nutritious as the really good stuff. But, any vegetable is still going to be better for you than not eating veg at all. Here are a few good options:
- Mushrooms, especially roasted.
- Gherkins have a tang to them that masks the fact you’re eating vegetables.
- Corn on the cob is delicious with a little butter added.
When you have gotten to the point where you can eat the above to the point of enjoyment, consider branching out into other vegetables and encouraging your palate to be open to experimentation.
#3 – Consider Alternative Ways Of Obtaining Nutrients
Just because you don’t like the taste of vegetables doesn’t mean that there’s no way for you to consume them. There are plenty of options, ranging from kale powder to be able to take vegetables in capsule form. While these options might not be as effective as just being able to eat the food itself, it’s definitely a better option than just forgoing the huge benefits of vegetables entirely.
#4 – Experiment With Longer Cooking Times
Vegetables that have been cooked for a short time tend to be less appetizing. Therefore, if it’s the taste you abhor, cooking them for longer — potentially even reducing them to mush — could be a way to make them edible to you. Despite popular opinion, cooking doesn’t damage the nutritional benefits in any substantial way — there’s no truth that eating raw or barely-cooked vegetables is better for your health. So do what you’ve got to do to reduce the taste by cooking vegetables for as long as you need to.
#5 – Use A Juicer
If you want to juice vegetables so you can glug all that nutritional goodness back in one go, then that’s a decent option. It’s certainly a better option than going without vegetables at all.
However, juicing removes the essential fiber from vegetables, meaning you may find the pure liquid more difficult to digest. You should also avoid adding too many fruits to a green juice; fruit will increase the taste, but also the calorie and sugar intake. Juicing is best reserved for occasional days when you just can’t force yourself to actively eat a vegetable. We all have those days, so at least you can still grab some nutritional benefits when you’re feeling that way!
Vegetables might never be your favorite part of a meal, but with the above, you should be able to find some way of incorporating them into your diet.