7 Creative Ideas to Pack in Fruits and Veggies

by Leigh Ann Otte

Is half your plate fruits and vegetables?

That’s what the government’s emphasizing now, with the release of the new MyPlate icon. (Bye-bye, food pyramid, old buddy, old pal.) Since many of us tend to bulk up on meat and carbs, that amount of fruits and vegetables may seem dramatic. But actually, packing ‘em in may be easier than you think.

For one thing, you can throw them in with your main dishes. Or pile more on when you’re eating them anyway. Here are five of my favorite simple ideas we’ve featured in various articles:

  1. Toss green beans, eggplant or zucchini into spaghetti sauce or stews.
  2. Add broccoli florets, carrot slices, red pepper strips or chopped cucumber to pasta and potato salads. Do the same with casseroles and lasagnas, while decreasing the amount of cheese.
  3. Keep small plastic bags filled with single servings of cherries or grapes in your refrigerator to make fruit as easy to grab as a bag of chips.
  4. Kids will reach for what they see, so place a bowl of grapes, cherries or clementines on their homework table.
  5. Frozen grapes and bananas make sweet, cool treats in the summer.
  6. Use spaghetti squash instead of pasta.
  7. Rather than serve dessert in little bowls, try hollowing out halved citrus fruit or melon for some added nutrition and color.

The above tips come from these articles:

Want to add a little excitement? How about having a tasting party with exotic fruits and vegetables? In this week’s featured article, we talk about the passion fruit, with its fun edible seeds.

When you add more fruits and vegetables, you might find yourself dropping pounds too. Tasty and rewarding! Pass me a plate. I’m ready to start piling.

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Leigh Ann Otte is the managing editor of MyFamilyDoctorMag.com and a freelance health writer. This information is not meant to be individual advice. Please consult your doctor for that. See our disclaimer here.

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3 Responses to “7 Creative Ideas to Pack in Fruits and Veggies”

  1. How to get kids (and other picky eaters) to eat their veggies. | greengeekgirl Says:

    [...] 7 Creative Ideas to Pack in Fruits and Veggies (familydoctormag.com) [...]

  2. Liz Says:

    Great article full of ideas! I have such a hard time getting in all the fruits and veggies so I will definitely use these ideas.

    Frozen grapes and fruits are a great idea in this summer heat. Any great recommendations of recipes or combinations?

    Thanks!
    Liz-CoolProducts

  3. lotte Says:

    Thanks, Liz. I’m glad the ideas were helpful. We have lots of summer recipes here:
    http://familydoctormag.com/all-recipes/11/1533-best-healthy-summer-recipes.html

    Leigh Ann Otte
    Managing Editor
    MyFamilyDoctorMag.com

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