I’m not a vegetable girl.
Nope, not one bit.
But I do know a thing or two about the importance of vegetables and the reasons why they should make up the majority of our diet. The latest recommendations say that we need 9-12 servings of vegetables a day. If you noticed, that doesn’t include fruits.
In efforts to keep you from being paralyzed by fear, I thought it was time that I show you how to easily get 10 servings of vegetables a day.
Of course when you’re not a vegetable girl, they have to be AMAZING and delicious all the way through. What’s even better, I love what I eat even though I wouldn’t normally gravitate towards vegetables. The one thing I’ve learned is that finding ways in which you like them and trying them in multiple fashions over and over and over really makes you fall in love.
So yes, I’m now proud to announce I’m a veggie lover and my mission with this post is to make you one as well.
I promise you’re going to be amazed at just how easy it is and soon to be transformed into a vegetable magnet. While it may be a first for some of us, I don’t want you to be alarmed as you may notice yourself start drooling from this post. It’s perfectly normal in all of the right ways.
So first up:
What Counts as a Serving?
I’m going to get into the nitty-gritty as I know some of you have some hard-core planning, measuring and weighing genes in you, thanks to the horribly long diet trends we’ve lived with. Unfortunately these diet claims are just as engrained in us like a religion and so in order to appease this need, I’m giving serving sizes.
But note, more vegetables is always going to be best so it’s not a means that you got exactly what you needed but that you attempted, you got close, you went over. Really the bottom line, that you ate your veggies. So don’t get discouraged if 10 just isn’t in the cards yet. Every day, every meal is a choice and if you focus on the present and less in the past or future 10 won’t be that far out of reach.
Who knows some of you may even blow it out of the water.
So servings, here are the measurements:
- 2 cups raw leafy vegetables
- 1 cup cooked greens
- 1 cup raw vegetables
- 1/2 cup cooked vegetables
- 1 small to medium sweet potato or potato
- 1/2 cup vegetable juice
So just to clarify, 1 cup of vegetables, other than leafy greens, counts as a serving. So essentially we are going for roughly 10-14 cups of vegetables per day depending on how many you get from leafy greens.
I know that sounds like a crazy ridiculous amount but I promise you, it’s not as hard as you are making it. The easiest way to do this is to consume 3-4 cups with every meal and maybe sneak a few extra in for your snacks. But honestly you can get more than enough at each meal.
But and this is a big but…
In order to do this you must eat vegetables at every meal and starting with breakfast.
I’ve found that I have a much harder time getting them all in if I don’t consume any at breakfast.
It really is a turning point. But luckily there is plenty of ways to do this and they are darn delicious.
What Does 10 Servings a Day Look Like?
Before I give you tons and tons of healthy and delicious suggestions I wanted to lay out a typical day on how you could really achieve 10 servings easily. Let’s begin with breakfast and break it down:
Breakfast – Roasted Vegetables + Baked Eggs
- Roasted Vegetables – sweet potatoes, mushrooms, peppers, cauliflower, broccoli (2 cups)
- 2 sunny side up eggs or added legumes
- TOTAL = ~ 3 Servings of vegetables
Lunch – Caesar Salad stuffed Sweet Potato
- 1 medium sweet potato
- 2 cups chopped greens
- 1/2 avocado
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes sliced
- 1/2 cup shredded chicken (optional)
- Caesar dressing
- TOTAL = ~ 3-4 servings of vegetables
Snack – Green Smoothie Bowl + Handful of nuts
- 1 cup romaine
- 1 cup sliced cucumbers + celery
- 1/2 cup pineapple chunks
- 1 orange
- 1/2 cup green tea
- 1/2 cup ice
- topped with chia seeds, hemp hearts, bee pollen, GF dry oats
- TOTAL – ~1-2 servings
Dinner – Steak Fajita Salad Bowls
- 1 cup caramelized peppers + onions
- 1 cup protein
- 1/2 avocado
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 2 cups leafy greens chopped
- 1/2-1 cup cooked quinoa
- Ranch Dressing
- Total = ~ 3-4 servings of vegetables
This makes the grand total for this day come to 10-13 servings. All delicious, all healthy, all vibrant, full of life, energy and loads of nutrients.
What do you think?
Is this an easy way to get 10 servings each day?
What Would Happen if You Did This?
One of my greatest passions in life is making real food taste delicious and so delicious that you don’t even miss all of the other junk that could fill our diets. Like make you deep down crave delicious healthy food. It can happen and that’s why I want to take a minute and get you pondering, what if you ate least 10 servings of vegetables every day?
What do you think would change about you?
What’s cool about focusing on a tip like this is it doesn’t have to do with elimination, restriction or starvation, the horrible trinity that will make you fail time and time again.
Instead, it changes your focus from always negative to a positive, like adding food to your diet, not taking it away. Your sneaky rebellious spirit doesn’t have to fight back, you dump tons of quality nutrients in your body, leading to more energy, vibrant feelings, lasting health, weight loss ->gasp<- and more zeal for life.
If nothing else, I want you to start focusing on this, adding vegetables to your diet until you hit 10 a day.
Then, leave a comment below and let me know how you felt and the changes you saw.
The Vegetable Challenge
What to Look out For:
Don’t worry, the vegetables are not the enemy in this story, they’re not out to get you. The villain is really our mind and how we perceive food.
Remember, any vegetables are better than none. If you do happen to want to know the nitty-gritty, you’re really going to take this thing by the horns and go full force than take note of these two things.
- Know about the dirty dozen and clean fifteen.
- Eat Seasonal
While I don’t suggest that all produce needs to be organic there is a list of those fruits and vegetables with the highest pesticide and herbicide content and with that I would recommend buying them organic. Things like white potatoes (not sweet), leafy greens, etc. You can find the complete list in my free detox guide by clicking below.
Get my list of what vegetables to buy organic in my
simple detox guide
Lastly, it is hard to even understand what seasonality is anymore considering our grocery stores are littered with every kind of produce, even those you should only get your hands on once a year. Thanks to produce traveling thousands of miles we no longer have seasons in our produce section.
However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t aim to eat seasonally. I think this is really a HUGE subject and one I’ll dive deeper into in a later post. For now, take note of the season and aim to eat more of those vegetables and produce items and less of the others.
In the meantime your hero of the story, healthy and delicious vegetable based recipes.
Veggies for Breakfast:
- Spiralizer Sweet Potato Breakfast Hash
- Sweet Potato Apple Hash Browns
- Avocado Hashbroffle
- Egg and Sweet Potato Leftover Scramble
- Heavenly Breakfast
- Make Ahead Breakfast Burritos
- Goat Cheese Scramble with Pesto Veggies
- Breakfast Tacos
- Baked Eggs in Stuffed Peppers
- Spinach Avocado & Sun-Dried Tomatoes Home Fries Skillet
Vegetable Packed Smoothies:
- Berry Cauliflower Smoothie
- Green Detox Smoothie
- 4-ingredient Green Smoothie
- Power Foods Smoothie
- Tropical Carrot Juice
Vegetable Filled Snacks & Sides:
- Basil Parmesan Carrot Fries
- Capreses Zucchini Salad
- Detox Hasselback Sweet Potatoes
- 10 minute cucumber grape salad with poppyseed dressing
- Warm Potato Salad with bacon and garlic butter sauce
- Sriracha fried brussels sprouts
- Buttery Sweet Corn, tomato and feta salad
- Tomato, cucumber and avocado salad
- Caprese Stuffed Mushrooms
Vegetable Lunch Ideas:
- Asian Style Lettuce Wraps
- Chipotle Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Avocado and Tomato Salad
- Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Short Ribs and Cabbage
- Tex Mex Salad with Sriracha Crema
- Sticky Sesame Chicken Salad
- The Best Salad Ever
- Cuban Salad Bowl
- Turkey Caesar Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Sunflower Crunch Chopped Salad
- Shrimp BLT Salad
- Mason Jar Salads
- Paleo Sweet Potato Chili
- Secret Ingredient Taco Soup
- Creamy Tomato Soup
- 30 minute vegetable Lentil Soup
- Chicken and Vegetable Noodle Soup
- Moroccan Soup with Kale and Chickpeas
Vegetable Filled Dinner Ideas:
- Asparagus and Mushroom Cauliflower Risotto
- Pizza Supreme on Cauliflower Crust
- Crunchy Taco Kale Salad
- Grilled Veggie + Steak Salad with herbed butter sauce
- Deconstructed Stuff Pepper Skillet
- Zoodles with spinach kale and basil pesto
- Zoodle Rosa
- Bacon and Orange Balsamic Asparagus Salad
- Loaded Sweet Potato Nachos with Mango Salsa
- Slow Cooker Vietnamese Beef with Chimichurri
- Egg Roll in a Bowl
- Spinach Artichoke Bowl with Marinated Mushrooms
- Grain-Free Spaghetti Pie
- Portobello Sliders Three Ways
- Reuben in a Bowl
- Harvest Salad
This is just the tip of the iceberg for what vegetable recipes can be found online. Thousands maybe even hundreds of thousands of unique ways to use vegetables. Don’t get bored, don’t ever get bored. This just allows the foothold for processed, less nutritious foods to take hold of your life again.
Stay excited, try new things, be brave and watch as you slowly transform your taste buds, eating patterns and health right before your eyes.
don’t leave without grabbing my
simple detox guide
Here we go!