Easy ways to get more fruit and veg in your day

Vegetables

Breakfast

  • Always including some veg with your weekend breakfast. Spinach, tomatoes and mushrooms are easy and pretty standard, why not try asparagus (when in season), minty peas or chunky roasted sweet potato.
  • Add some finely diced veg to your scrambled eggs or omelette. Good options include capsicum, spring onion, zucchini, mushrooms, spinach or tomato. Serve with rocket or spinach and a drizzle of balsamic.
  • Enjoy poached eggs or smoked salmon on corn or zucchini fritters.

 

Mains

  • Use vegetables instead of meat as the base of your favourite meat-based dish, such as burgers, stir fries or curry – legumes or tofu can supply the missing protein.
  • Grate a carrot or add some kidney beans or other legumes, such as chickpeas, into any dish that involves mince, such as pasta sauces, Bolognese, burritos and tacos.
  • Likewise add additional veggies such as broccoli, green beans, mushrooms or capsicum to meals that may not always include them such as pasta and risotto dishes.
  • Have a bag of frozen veg in the freezer and add to pasta sauces or curries while they’re cooking for a quick and easy veg addition.
  • Add lentils into your lasagne or Bolognese – they cook down to nothing but add much needed fibre and protein.
  • Use avocado as a spread on toast or in sandwiches and rolls – has the rich, creamy taste of butter without the high saturated fat content!
  • Try making a pizza base out of vegetables such as cauliflower or zucchini – with vegetables on top as well as in the base this can be a veg-packed meal.
  • Vegetable fritters can be a quick and easy lunch or dinner. Try zucchini and corn, maybe mix in some legumes like chickpeas, and use wholemeal flour to bind together. Cook in minimal oil or in a non-stick pan.
  • Don't throw away your broccoli stalks! Slice them up to serve in a stir fry, dice them and add to a soup, or blend into a liquid and add to a 'wet' dish like soup or stew.

 

Snacks

  • Snack on celery and carrots, which can also be served with hommus, tzatziki or other vegetable-based dips.
  • Make some fresh bruschetta with diced tomatoes, basil and a drizzle of olive oil on toasted wholegrain bread, as an afternoon or pre-dinner snack instead of the usual crisps or cheese and biscuits.
  • Make your own dips with legumes or vegetables as the base – such as hommus, broad bean dip, babaganoush, spicy pumpkin.
  • Try roasting tomatoes for a really tasty snack with wholegrain crackers and cream cheese. If slow-roasted the tomatoes keep well in the fridge too so you can just eat them throughout the week.
  • Roasted chickpeas are also a really tasty snack – drizzle with a little oil and some Moroccan spices before roasting to make them extra tasty.
  • Savoury scones or muffins, including any veggies you have on hand, can be a great snack to have on the go. They can also be frozen and eaten for weeks to come.
  • For a quick work or evening snack, cut up some florets of broccoli, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil in tupperware, steam in microwave, and top with sliced almonds. A delicious, nutritious and filling snack.
  • Corn cobs make a great snack at work, just pop it in the microwave.
  • Make a green smoothie – favourites include spinach, finely chopped broccoli, cucumber, carrot and some ginger.
  • You can also try adding vegetables to fruit smoothies – avocado adds smoothness; cucumber or cos lettuce work well as water; and spinach adds loads of nutrition without affecting the flavour.

 

Fruit

Breakfast

  • Try adding frozen berries to your oats when cooking porridge – you’ll get the vitamin and fibre boost and they turn the porridge an amazing colour!
  • Make your own compote by simmering cut up fruits with the juice from oranges, and then mix through yoghurt or serve on top of porridge.
  • Add seasonal fruit to breakfast foods, such as topping Bircher muesli with berries in summer and sliced pears or banana stirred through porridge in winter.
  • Try some sliced banana on porridge sprinkled with cinnamon – a great alternative to adding sugar.

 

Desserts

  • Frozen banana and frozen grapes can be great as a dessert! Mix with natural or Greek yoghurt for added calcium, or for a sweet treat try rolling them in coconut.
  • Sweet tooth? Add your favourite sliced or diced fruit to some low fat yoghurt, with crushed nuts and a drizzle of honey for a nutritious and delicious snack or dessert.
  • For a little more flavour, try roasting your strawberries and serving with reduced fat yoghurt – this is especially good if the strawberries aren’t very sweet.
  • Bring a fruit salad to dinner parties for a healthy dessert option instead of ice cream, chocolate or cake. Serve with natural or Greek yoghurt and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
  • For your next dinner party, prepare cored apples for dessert stuffed with oats, sultanas, cinnamon and some brown sugar, and baked in the oven.

 

Snacks

  • Instead of having a sugary snack like a muffin or pastry, have a piece of fruit handy, or pick one up on your way to work. An apple for less than $1, versus a $4 muffin, why wouldn’t you?
  • It’s not just kids that are more likely to eat fruit when it’s cut up for them – adults will too. So take a moment to slice or dice a piece of fruit for your next snack and before you know it, it’ll all be eaten.
  • Wholemeal fruit muffins can make a handy snack. Overripe bananas can be mashed and used to flavour and sweeten, while grated apples also add texture.
  • Top some reduced fat yoghurt with chopped pear and nuts.

 

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