What are the best vegetables for everyone

Eat More Green Vegetables: 8 Tips That Will Help You Do It

One of the nicest nutritional recommendations is to eat as “colorful” as possible - in the literal sense of the word.

The juicy red of tomatoes, the bright green of spinach or kale and the orange of carrots are produced by different colorants, which are part of the so-called secondary plant substances. Many health benefits are now attributed to these phytochemicals, and it is therefore a good idea to consume as many different types of them as possible.

I also like the “colorful food rule” because it is so easy to implement and it helps me to eat a varied diet. And of course the colorful dishes look great on the plate - another plus!

Do you eat enough green vegetables?

Think about your last three meals: Did you cover many different colors - red, green, yellow, orange, purple, and so on? Or do the same colors always prevail on your plate?

A look at the statistics shows that “we Germans” particularly like to eat tomatoes, carrots, onions and peppers.

Do you recognize yourself in it? We do! These types of vegetables are used again and again in our dishes (you can see for yourself on our recipe overview page).

Green vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, kale or savoy cabbage follow only a long way behind these “classics” in terms of popularity. As we shall see in a moment, green vegetables are among the healthiest things you can eat - and are therefore an essential part of a balanced diet.

Why You Should Eat More Green Vegetables

Okay, of course I don't know if you should eat “more” green vegetables - if they are on your menu every day, that's great and you're already doing everything right.

But if you still have room for improvement, there are many reasons why green vegetables should end up on your plate more often than before:

  • Green vegetables are low in calories but packed with nutrients.
  • Green vegetables contain a large amount of fiber, which is important for a well-functioning digestion and a healthy intestinal flora, among other things.
  • Green vegetables are rich in vitamin C, vitamin K (important for bone metabolism, also in connection with vitamin D), beta-carotene and numerous B vitamins. Folic acid (vitamin B9) even owes its name to the green leaves (Latin: folium = leaf).
  • Green vegetables are among the best plant sources of magnesium, calcium, and iron.
  • And finally, green vegetables contain an abundance of antioxidants that can reduce so-called oxidative stress in the body and are therefore considered to be potentially health-promoting (although research here has not yet come to a definite result).

How do you manage to eat more green vegetables?

So how do you manage to get more green vegetables into your diet? We have put together 8 tips for you that will help you.

Of course, you don't have to implement all the tips at once - to start with, find something that you can easily implement and then feel your way step by step towards "more greenery"!

1. Green smoothies

Green smoothies are great - once you get used to the color, you'll love them! Try your smoothie, for example, with broccoli, kale or the seven herbs of the Frankfurt green sauce (okay, strictly speaking no vegetables) - thanks to the multitude of possible combinations, it never gets boring!

Find out more here: The golden rule for green smoothies and 27 recipes for no-frills green smoothies

2. No shopping without green vegetables

Make a resolution to take at least one type of green vegetable with you with every purchase: spinach, broccoli, savoy cabbage, Swiss chard, kale - whatever appeals to you the most and looks the freshest.

It can also be something that you have never tried before. In this way you stimulate your creativity and can break out of your usual cooking patterns.

The seasonal organic vegetable subscriptions, which are sure to be available in your area by now, are also great. Since we have received a vegetable box like this every week, we have already discovered numerous green vegetables for ourselves that we used to avoid out of ignorance!

3. Green vegetables in the freezer

We always have spinach and broccoli in the freezer (and kale too, if we get some). These frozen vegetables are great for green smoothies and as a green addition to cooking when you have to go quickly or you don't have fresh vegetables at home.

4. "Pimp" familiar recipes

There is almost no dish that you cannot add to the value with green vegetables. So top your lentil bolognese with a handful of rocket, cut a few broccoli florets into your couscous salad or add a layer of spinach to your lasagna!

5. Try new recipes

We humans are creatures of habit, and that also applies to the kitchen: Probably each of us has our five to ten standard dishes that end up on our plate over and over again.

And that's okay too - after all, it saves a lot of work if you don't have to follow a recipe every time you cook.

Nevertheless, you can break this routine every now and then and try something new - here are a few dishes with green vegetables from our recipe collection that you can draw inspiration from:

with spinach

with broccoli

with kale

with other green vegetables

6. Use a steamer insert

Since we bought this inexpensive steamer insert * a few years ago, our vegetable consumption has increased significantly. You just put it in a saucepan, fill it up with vegetables, add a little water - and after a few minutes the vegetables are done, but still crisp and firm to the bite. Thanks to the gentle preparation in the steam, more nutrients are also retained.

Alternatively, you can put your green vegetables on top of the other ingredients in the saucepan or pan towards the end of the cooking time and let them cook for a few minutes with the lid closed - this works very well with many dishes!

7. Green vegetables as a snack

Did you know that broccoli and green asparagus can also be eaten raw? Together with a hummus dip, this makes a great, healthy snack for a cozy evening on the couch.

The kale chips have almost become a classic (here you can find our recipe) - but instead of kale, the chips can also be prepared with savoy cabbage or spinach. Seldom have we devoured a whole head of savoy cabbage as quickly as we did as savoy cabbage chips!

8. Use fresh herbs

Fresh herbs such as parsley, chives, coriander or basil give dishes that certain something and also improve their appearance - as is well known, the eye eats with them.

Also, just like green vegetables, they are very nutritious. And even if you only use the herbs for seasoning and decorating, they can make a small but important contribution to a healthy diet.

Incidentally, fresh herbs also taste really good in smoothies, as our green sauce smoothie already mentioned above proves 🙂

Do you have another tip on how to include more green vegetables in your diet? Then tell us and the other readers in a comment!

PS: Also listen to our podcast episode on this topic: Why green vegetables are so healthy

Info:This post originally appeared in February 2016. We last revised it in April 2021 and brought it up to date.