Most of us are juggling so many responsibilities, it can often be a tremendous feat to make a meal, let alone pay attention to all of the specific nutrients it contains. I’ve pretty much never had lunch and thought, “Oh yes, definitely got my vitamin C and omega 3s in that one!” I’m like, “Yay! That was a good meal” and move on. Though I don’t keep track every nutrient, I definitely make it a point to have protein and produce in every single meal. When I do this, I find that I have so much more energy, and I feel more satisfied from the extra fiber and nutrients. And I find that when my meals include protein and fresh produce, I don’t crave sugar or salty snacks.
Here are some of my favorite easy ways to amp up the nutrition and fiber content of my meals:
- I serve any casserole-type dish with zucchini noodles or on a bed of spinach. This means that when I enjoy more indulgent dishes like enchiladas and lasagna, by having them on a bed of fresh greens or with some zucchini noodles, one portion size is very satisfying. It creates more volume in the meal and also adds in some bonus nutrition.
- I add spinach and cauliflower rice to every single smoothie! Spinach is a pretty common smoothie ingredient, but I totally understand if you’re raising your eyebrows at the cauliflower rice. I use the frozen cauliflower rice and add ¼-⅓ cup. I promise you can’t taste it, and it gives smoothies an amazing creamy texture!
- I turn leftovers into omelet filling. I love stuffing omelets with whatever sautéed veggies we have left over from dinner. It cuts down on prep time, waste, and gives these sad veggies another chance at life.
- I add tons of chopped veggies to my Bolognese sauce – mushrooms, bell pepper, carrots, and zucchini are my favorites. I’ll also do this with soup: tons of veggies, herbs, chicken, and broth into the Instant Pot, and it makes a heartwarming soup in 20 minutes.
- I serve fruit as a dessert. One of my all-time favorite desserts is to chop an apple and microwave it for 2 minutes with cinnamon. When it’s done, add some chocolate chips on top or a tablespoon of peanut butter. So good!