Colorful, Delicious and Nutritious!

— Written By and last updated by Nicole Vernon
en Español

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Eating nutritious foods does not have to be complicated or expensive as some might think. There are many simple ways we can start increasing the nutritional value of our meals. One that I enjoy is finding ways to include a variety of colors to my dishes by including more fruits and vegetables. How can you include more color and nutrition while making delicious meals? Try some of these simple suggestions:

  • Making scrambled eggs for breakfast? Add some chopped onions, bell peppers and/or tomatoes.
  • Fruit and yogurt smoothies can include a variety of fruit and some kale or spinach. For picky eaters, try adding blueberries to hid the green color. (Use overly-ripe bananas or other fruit to avoid waste. Keep them frozen until ready to use).
  • Add a few blueberries or very ripe bananas to your batter when making pancakes or muffins. (Tip: top pancakes with fresh fruit instead of syrup.)
  • Making rice? Add a can of mixed veggies.
  • A quick and inexpensive side dish can be a 16 oz. frozen bag of mixed vegetables. (Tip: while cooking, add some chicken broth, 1 tbsp. olive oil or butter, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, 1/2 tsp. onion powder, salt and pepper.)
  • Cut some fruit, such as apples, strawberries or mangos and add to your salad.
  • Substitute the beef for frozen spinach in  your lasagna or layer slices of zucchini into the dish.
  • Add a variety of chopped vegetables (bell peppers, onions, mushrooms) to your homemade pizza. (Tip: use English muffins as crust for quick mini pizzas.)
  • Add in other veggies you have at home into your spaghetti sauce when making spaghetti. (Tip: blending all veggies with sauce will prevent picky eaters from picking out the veggies or even noticing them.)

In order to save money when buying fruits and vegetables, try buying them while they are in season (USDA SNAP-Ed Seasonal Produce Guide) visit your local farmers markets and include a variety of frozen and canned items.