By Corey Lewis, CPT, CSCS
The winter season is right around the corner. Soon, you might see streets covered in snow, holiday decorations, and people bundled up from head to toe. In addition to the attire and weather changes, the most appealing part about winter is the food. During this time of the year, most people find themselves seeking warmth from their heaters and meals. But many winter comfort foods can leave you feeling (and looking) more stuffed than usual. Instead of heavy foods, try exploring the variety in texture, flavor, and consistency that winter vegetables offer. Therefore, you can bring formal holiday dinners with family and friends to life with a seasonal selection of fresh produce. Try incorporating them into these five delicious recipes for winter vegetables.
The best winter vegetables to take advantage of right now are:
Are you struggling to think of creative recipes with this expansive list of vegetables? Don’t worry, because I’ve got you covered. Here are five 15-minute healthy recipes that you can try out this winter season.
Don’t you just love a good soup when you’re stuck at home? If so, then try this low-calorie but filling meal. We’ve adapted it from Martha Stewart’s recipe for a Hearty Winter-Vegetable Soup. This soup is packed with nutritious winter vegetables such as Yukon Gold potatoes, butternut squash, and carrots. Because of that fact, this meal is the definition of hearty yet healthy.
Many people are unaware that a lot of vegetables are packed with protein. The right types of vegetables can provide you with your daily protein needs before you even think about reaching for a piece of chicken. In fact, within the winter vegetable subsection alone, there are plenty of veggies that are loaded with protein. For instance, 100 grams of spinach contains 2.9 grams of protein, and 100 grams of broccoli contains 2.8 grams of protein.
Vegetables are low in protein when compared to their meatier counterparts. However, you can eat more of them in one sitting and thus attain the necessary amount of protein needed for the day. As a side note, you may still have trouble reaching your necessary protein intake. If that’s the case, then you can reach your goals with a plant-based protein supplement.
We adapted this quick and easy Spinach and Gnocchi with Garlic Chips recipe from Rachel Ray’s recipe. Therefore, as you can imagine, it’s a great option for a protein-packed winter veggie meal.
There are lots of low-carb winter vegetables to choose from. According to Healthline, these include bell peppers, broccoli, mushrooms, asparagus, zucchini, spinach, cauliflower, green beans, and lettuce. So, here’s a 15-minute winter vegetable recipe you can try, without your stove. Instead of cooking, toss up a Roasted Broccoli and Asparagus Salad. You’ll find that this is a great way to add in some low carb vegetables to your diet. The great thing about this recipe, adapted from Love and Olive Oil, is that it’s quick, easy, and guilt-free.
Unless you’re living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about the keto diet. Keto is not a magic bullet, and you should consider the possible risks. However, this strict but effective lifestyle has led to positive body transformations for countless individuals around the world.
The keto diet is built on high fat and low protein. According to keto diet advocates, this foundation puts your body into a state of ketosis. This, in turn, forces you to burn more fat rather than carbohydrates. Some keto-friendly vegetables include zucchini and, of course, the fan-favorite winter vegetable brussels sprouts. Here is a quick and easy Seared Brussels Sprouts recipe, adapted from the New York Times. I’m sure of one thing. If you try this and other recipes with an open mind, then you will surely bust through your weight-loss plateaus.
Last, but certainly not least, are perennial vegetables. “Perennial” means that these vegetables can grow back for multiple years. Many of these vegetables have a crunchy texture or intense flavor. One of the most popular perennial vegetables is artichokes. This is because they are delicious, low in fat, high in fiber, and filled with rich antioxidants. So, if you are looking to incorporate this insanely beneficial vegetable into your diet, try this recipe. We adapted it from a recipe found at The Mediterranean Dish. The best part is that it only requires 15 short minutes of preparation. As a result, you’ll have Artichoke Garden Flatbread Pizza.
Winter is a great time to explore new, healthy recipes. Consequently, you can stay on track with your healthy lifestyle while having fun. So, try these five 15-minute recipes. They are sure to get you feeling warm (and healthy) on the inside. You might eat keto, love soup, or just want to cut back on carbs. If that’s the case, then winter vegetables can inspire you to try something new while meeting your dietary goals.