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  • Chef Brittany Greene

The Greene Thumb | Incorporating Veggies...In Disguise

Updated: Dec 9, 2019

Incorporating veggies into your family's diet can be a challenge when you have children (or adults!) in your family that are "anti-vegetable". With Fall upon us, NOW is the time to make use of the bountiful vegetable harvest!

School is back in session and while some parents are jumping for joy that their days are less hectic with the kids not at home. I know we are all dreading the question “What’s for dinner?” Getting your family (spouses included) to eat what’s on the table can be daunting for some but there are creative ways to incorporate veggies into the meal without them even noticing.

The first trick is color association. Think of taking something your kids are used to eating and incorporating a veggie of the same color. Mac and Cheese is a go-to for kids. To make it even creamier, fold in a can of sweet potato, pumpkin or butternut squash puree. Check out how beautiful a plate of mac and cheese can be just amped up with veggies and garnish!

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

Ketchup is a staple in the kitchen for all things dip-able. Check out the link to see how beets and dates can be pureed to give you a fun alternative to store bought sugary ketchup!

Beet Ketchup

The second trick is keeping flavors traditional. Chili and Pasta can be super versatile and with such bold flavors kids won’t even notice the substitutions.

Pack a Chili with bell peppers, zucchini, celery, carrot, onion, tomatoes, sweet potatoes and punch it up with traditional spices like chili powder and cumin- let it simmer all day in a crock pot and those vegetables will melt away but the nutrition will stay. Classic garnishes will make it look like it’s the chili they are used to.

Sweet Potato & Black Bean Chili

Roasting Spaghetti Squash is almost faster than dealing with boiling pasta.

Simply split open the squash and scrap out the guts and seeds, season generously and roast cut side down for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

DON’T OVER COOK IT! Mushy squash will be a sure sign your family will notice the difference. Using a fork scrap back the inside of the squash and plate just as you would pasta.

Sweet Basil, salty Parmesan and a robust tomato sauce (possibly made out of the last of your harvest of tomatoes) poured on top of steaming hot spaghetti squash will not miss a beat in the flavor department and to the eye will look like something they are used to eating.

Bonus: now that one carb is subbed you don’t have to feel bad about mopping up the plate with that garlic bread!


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