Do you want to give your meals a luxurious and delicious upgrade, while still creating colorful (great-for-you!) dishes? Rather than using your veggies as a simple side or afterthought, bring them to center stage and let them elevate your plate.
A well-stocked pantry and refrigerator is the start to leveled-up veggies. Add these items to your shopping list:
- Citrus: Lemons, Limes, Oranges
- Herbs and more: Flat leaf parsley, cilantro, fresh ginger, garlic
- Spices: salt-free spice blends, smoked paprika, spice blends (umami, Moroccan, Asian and more)
- Sauces and marinades: light coconut milk, low-sodium soy sauce (or tamari), vinegars (rice, balsamic)
- Sweeteners: maple syrup, balsamic, honey
Give your vegetables a culinary upgrade with array of seasonings, cooking methods, and creativity:
Create dishes in your home that you would seek out at your favorite restaurant. Options like
Yogurt-Marinated Cauliflower Steaks with Herb Sauce or Air-fried Artichokes with Lemon Aioli stand alone as guest-worthy apps or savory sides that will rival any take out dish.
Push aside the basic steamed or usual cooked veggies and add Caramelized Leeks with Sesame & Soy
or Roasted Bok Choy with Miso-Lemon Vinaigrette to your dish instead. Try baked Honey Chipotle-Glazed Squash Wedges in place of French fries. These recipes turn veggies into essential elements of your menu that might just overshadow your main dish.
Why not make veggies the main? You might not even recognize your own kitchen if you prepare meatless dishes that make veggies shine. Dishes like Crispy Baked Avocado Tacos or Tofu and Asparagus Stir Fry will have your family thinking it was take out night.
Making restaurant-style salads at home isn’t hard when you have the right ingredients on hand. Start with a bed of lettuce and then get creative. Leftover grilled or roasted veggies or proteins, beans, and grains are just some suggestions for developing satisfying salads. Salads can be hot, like this Roasted Beet, Potato, and Green Bean Salad or elegant and unexpected like a Herby Radicchio and Fennel Salad with Shallot Vinaigrette.
“Fast Casual” (at home!)
Create your favorite fast casual restaurant dishes in your own kitchen. Pesto Veggie Melts and Roasted Cauliflower Rubens turn sandwiches into a “dinner worthy” meal. Likewise, simple grain bowls get a boost when turned into a Green Goddess Tofu Bowl. There’s no need to order out when you’re making meals like this in your own home!