With a new year often come new resolutions. I love how January gives me that clean slate with renewed energy & motivation to improve aspects of my life. As a family, we are in the middle of our Veganuary (and going strong!) and we’re already finding new exciting ways to use a variety of vegetables throughout our day. I’m sharing that inspiration in this post with some practical ways to increase your daily greens!
Why would you even want to eat more green vegetables? Well, they are packed full of important nutrients to nourish our bodies – like vitamines, minerals and fibre. Dark leafy greens are the top of the class in this area and consuming them on a regular basis offers a wealth of health benefits. Off course it’s important to eat a variety of foods and colours, so don’t just stick to only greens after this 😉
For best nutrition and flavour, buy vegetables that are in season and source them as local as you can.
Are you ready to get some more greens in your belly? Let’s get started!
10 Steps To Increase Your Daily Greens
1. Stock up on frozen veggies
Perfect for those moments you don’t have fresh veggies around. Having a freezer full of produce like peas, spinach, beans and broccoli makes life easy on the busy or not-so-prepared days. Frozen veggies are often just as high in nutrition as fresh ones and they are convenient and budget friendly too.
2. Make yourself a green smoothie
Green smoothies are delicious and can be a great solution when you’re on the go! They are very adaptable – use whatever you’ve got lying around and add greens to suit your taste. If you’ve never made a green smoothie, my my favourite recipe here is a great start! You can work your way up to adding more greens or keep it light and sweet.
We got ourselves a new blender and it makes for the best and easiest smoothies! Everything comes out so much smoother than anything we made with our humble stick blender. It makes it easier to add hardier greens like kale too. Winning!
3. Eat greens for breakfast
This can be a tricky one for some people, but it doesn’t need to be hard at all! Some of my favourite ways to eat green veggies for breakfast are adding spinach to eggs or mushrooms on toast or to make some delicious pea & zucchini fritters topped with grilled tomatoes (recipe will follow sometime soon!). Or how about these green pancakes from Green Kitchen Stories – wow!
4. Layer dark salad leaves on your sandwich or wrap
Such an simple yet effective way to add crunch, yumminess and nutrition to your lunch…don’t be shy to add good couple handfuls of salad leaves on top of your fillings. My favourites include a mesclun salad mix (a variety of different dark leafy salad leaves), rocket leaves or water cress.
5. Use lots of fresh herbs
Fresh herbs are chocca full good things and you use them in so many ways to improve nutrition and flavour! Think chopped parsley over soups & rice, cilantro for asian & Mexican dishes, basil for anything Italian and chives over potatoes and eggs. But venture out to explore too – some of my personal favourites are chervil (perfect in a salad) and dill (try them with red beets).
6. Make a pesto
Speaking of using more fresh herbs: pesto’s are delicious and an easy way to up your (leafy) greens. They are simple to make and you don’t need to stick to a classic recipe for it: swap the basil for any kind of herb or leafy green like rocket, kale or watercress. Add them to your sandwiches, scrambled eggs or use as a dip! Find more inspiration in this post from Bon Appetit.
7. Add some sprouted greens
Sprouts or microgreens are little miracle wonders when it comes to nutrition. They transform a simple cracker with avocado or hummus and are great on your sandwich or in a salad. I love using spouts like cress as they are readily available in the supermarket here. There’s many different ones around though and you can easily grow your own too!
8. Add extra leafy greens into the pot
This little trick works so well and adds extra goodness to whatever meal you’re about to eat: add a couple of handfuls of leafy greens to your food right before serving. You want them to wilt and mix through while retaining the nutrients. I absolutely love spinach for this – it’s so versatile and it’s fairly neutral flavour goes with a lot of different types of food. Making a curry? Add some spinach! Eating pasta? Scrambled eggs? Stew? Risotto? Spinach goes.
9. Add some steamed veg as a side
If you don’t want to add any leafy greens to your dish – or it doesn’t really suit the meal, it’s always a good idea to have extra veg as a side. Think steamed broccoli, zucchini or green beans to name a few. These work well with almost any meal – if you’d like to flavour them a little add a little lemon juice, olive oil and sea salt and toss right before serving. Yum!
10. Make a green dip
A perfect way to sneak in some extra greens, especially when you’re on the go or into late night snacking (that might be us). I loved the simple pea and avocado dip my brother made the other day, it was delicious and so colourful! And how about this magic green dip from Pinch of Yum? Yum.
Which of these are you going to incorporate? Let me know in the comments and use tag #eatyourdailygreens or @eatyourdailygreens on instagram in your post!