Meal Planning

Veggie Help
by Dakee
October 7, 2012 at 7:13 PM

I need veggie help, & ways to cook them!  Or good sides.  I have been doing frozen mixed veggies, coined carrots,plain peas & green beans, salads,etc.  How can I add more variety and get my kids to eat them?  I have been looking at the Sneaky Chef for ideas but I hope to find other recipes as well.  I have one child who doesn't like salad, one who doesn't like green beans or peas, and one who loves all of that so we aren't catering to them.  We serve it and make them at least try it a few times.   Please share your recipes!!! thank you


  • Kelly913
    October 7, 2012 at 10:43 PM

    I wish I had some helpful tips.  My son eats raw Brussels sprouts and thinks he's getting a treat!  We just keep lots of fresh produce around and he eats it. 

  • Kelly913
    October 7, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    We're of the mindset that healthy fats are just as important as fresh produce, so if you're OK with that, try making good quality dips.  Full fat organic sour cream with dried herbs for homemade ranch.  Hollondaise sauce with artichokes and/or asparagus (or anything really!)  Full fat organic yogurt flavored with what they like. 

  • sleepymommy87
    October 7, 2012 at 10:58 PM
    What about subbing cauliflower instead of potatoes? Mashed cauliflower, twice baked cauliflower (sour cream, cheese, chives, etc), or cauliflower bites baked with cheese. Asparagus is delicious laid out on a baking sheet drizzled with olive oil, sprinkle garlic, lemon juice, and parmasean cheese and baked for about ten or fifteen on 425°. They get a little crispy and are so yummy. You could make stuffed bell peppers, eggplant parmesean, one of my favorites is portobello mushroom pizza: you take the cap out, put them gill side up on a lightly olive oil greased baking sheet and bake for about ten minutes or until the mushroom starts to dry a little. Spoon marinara sauce and put whatever pizza toppings you like. I put cheese, bell pepper, onion, olives, etc you can put pretty much whatever. Then bake about ten minutes until cheese is melted. They're sooo good! Or use portobellos as the burger patty, grill them like a burger and put on buns. Make kale chips by drizzling cut up pieces of kale with olive oil and salt/pepper and bake on a cookie sheet until they're crispy. Make a chinese cabbage salad with napa cabbage tossed with a dressing of rice wine vinegar, sugar, and a little sesame oil. Then sprinkle some toasted ramen noodles on top. You could do sweet potato fries, same instructions as the kale chips basically. There are so many things to do with veggies! :)
  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:06 AM

    I made this without noodles last week, just a casserole, and my kids LOVED IT!

    Olive Garden Style Vegetarian Lasagna
    A bountiful vegetable mixture, a rich ricotta cheese mixture, and a homemade, cream sauce make this vegetarian lasagna well worth the extra effort.

    Alfredo Sauce:

    • 1/2 lb. Sweet or salted butter
    • 12 oz. Heavy cream
    • Fresh ground white pepper
    • 1 1/2 C. Fresh Parmesan -- grate
    • 18 slices Mozzarella cheese -- 1/2 oz. ea

    Ricotta Mixture:

    • 1 pint Ricotta cheese
    • 2 oz. Romano -- grate
    • 3 oz. Mozzarella -- shred
    • 2 Tbs. Green onions -- slice
    • 2 tsp. Fresh parsley -- chop
    • 1/2 tsp. Salt
    • 1/8 tsp. Black pepper
    • 1/4 tsp. Dried basil
    • 1/4 tsp. Dried oregano
    • 1 1/4 C. Alfredo sauce – cooled

    Vegetable Mixture:

    • 4 C. Broccoli florets
    • 2 C. Carrots; sliced 1/4" -- then chopped
    • 4 C. Mushrooms -- slice 1/4"
    • 2 C. Red bell peppers -- dice
    • 1 C. Green bell pepper -- dice
    • 1 C. Yellow onion -- dice
    • 2 C. Zucchini -- slice

    Lasagna noodles


    Lay out enough dry lasagna noodles in a 9x13 pan to ensure you have enough to make 3 full layers, with very little overlap on each layer. Remove the dry strips and cook according to package instructions until barely "al dente" and drain. 

    Alfredo Sauce: Heat water to a boil in the bottom of a double boiler. Add butter, cream and pepper to the top pot and heat until butter is completely melted, then stir in Parmesan until melted and blended. Remove top pot and set aside to cool. Divide the sauce into 2 equal portions. Refrigerate 1 portion for use later. 

    Ricotta Cheese Mixture: Combine all ingredients in a bowl and blend thoroughly with a rubber spatula. Set aside at room temp. 

    Vegetables: Combine all veggies and mix well. 

    Assembly: Coat the bottom and sides of a 9x13 baking dish with vegetable spray. Lay out cooked lasagna strips (about 4) to cover entire bottom. Spread 1-1/4 c of the Ricotta mix evenly over the strips. Top with 8 c of veggie mix and spread out evenly. Lay out 9 of the mozzarella slices to cover the veggie layer. Repeat this layering. Top the second layer of mozzarella slices with lasagna strips and spread them evenly with 1-1/4 c ricotta cheese mix to finish.

    Cooking: Spray a sheet of foil with vegetable spray and cover the baking dish tightly with the foil, sprayed side down. Bake in a preheated 375~ oven for about an hour or until the internal temp is 165~. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for a few minutes, covered, before cutting and serving. Immediately prior to serving, heat the reserved portion of Alfredo Sauce and ladle the hot sauce over each slice of lasagna as it is served. Serves 8.

  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:09 AM

    veggies are in the sauce!

    This is a family favorite; even the kids love it!

    Pork Chops with veggie sauce

    • 4 to 6 pork chops
    • 2 medium onions, chopped
    • 2 celery ribs, chopped
    • 1 large green pepper, chopped
    • 1 15 oz. can stewed or diced tomatoes
    • 1/2 c. ketchup
    • 2 Tbsp. vinegar
    • 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
    • 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
    • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
    • 1 beef bouillon cube
    • 2 Tbsp. cornstarch
    • 2 Tbsp. water

    Add all ingredients except water and cornstarch to the crock pot. Cook on low for 5 1/2 hours. Mix cornstarch and water together and stir into crock pot. Cook 30 minutes more. Usually served over rice.


    Brown chops in skillet. Add rest of ingredients except water and cornstarch. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Mix cornstarch and water together and add to skillet, stirring gently to mix. Simmer until sauce thickens.

  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:09 AM

    My family always finishes this one off.

    Twice-baked Non-potato casserole

    • 1 head cauliflower, cut into flowerets and steamed until very tender and then mashed with butter, salt and pepper
    • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 c. full fat sour cream
    • 1 to 2 green onions, sliced
    • 8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese, divided
    • 8 oz. bacon, cooked & crumbled

    Mix cauliflower, sour cream, green onions, 1 c. cheddar cheese, and bacon.  Pour into baking dish.  Top with remaining cheddar cheese and bake at 375° for 25 minutes.

  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:10 AM

    This went over VERY well with everyone.

    Ham, Spinach & Mushroom Frittata

    • 10 eggs (yes, ten)
    • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
    • 1 Tbsp. butter
    • 1/2 tsp. (1 clove) minced garlic
    • 1 small onion, diced
    • 1/4 c. coconut milk (you could substitue evaporated milk or whipping cream for this)
    • 1 c. fresh mushrooms, diced
    • 1 c. diced ham
    • 10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and drained very well
    • 1/2 c. chopped tomato
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • sprinkle or two of dried red pepper flakes
    • 1/2 tsp. dried parsley
    • 1 cup cheese (cheddar, Swiss, other) -- optional

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs snd coconut milk. Stir in salt, pepper, crushed red pepper and parsley.
    Saute onions and mushrooms in the olive oil and butter over medium heat in an oven proof skillet (I used cast iron) for 3 minutes. Add garlic and tomatoes; continue to cook for 1-2 more minutes until onions are translucent. Add spinach and ham to the mix and lightly salt & pepper the mixture.
    Spread mixture even into bottom of skillet. Pour egg mixture over vegetable/ham mixture. Use spatula to lift up vegetable/ham mixture along sides of pan to let the egg mixture flow underneath.
    Cook on stove top on medium heat until about half set, then put the skillet in the preheated oven and cook for 15 minutes or until puffy and golden.  Top with cheese and return to oven for just a few minutes more until cheese is melted.
    Finish by placing frittata under the broiler for up to a minute to get a deeper brown color & a bit of crispiness if you like. Be very careful handling the skillet! It’s extremely hot once placed in the oven. Allow to cool before slicing. Makes 6 - 8 servings.

  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:11 AM

    Carrot Souffle: made this last night and everyone loved it! more like a dessert than a side dish.

    • 2 lbs. carrots, peeled and sliced or 32 oz. carrots (I used some of our home canned carrots)
    • 3/4 c. sugar
    • 2 eggs
    • 1 tsp. vanilla
    • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
    • 1 tsp. salt
    • 1 cup light cream or milk


    • 1 c. crushed cornflakes (I think it would be great with wheat flakes too!)
    • 1/2 c. brown sugar
    • 1/4 c. chopped pecans (optional)
    • 4 Tbsp. melted butter or margarine
    • 1 Tbsp. flour

    Cook carrots until soft. Put into food processor or mixing bowl. Add rest of ingredients and process or mix until smooth. Pour into casserole dish. Mix topping ingredients together and sprinkle on top of carrot mixture. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.

  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:11 AM

    This is an easy and delicious way to get a variety of veggies in your diet!

    Roasted Vegetables
    • your choice of veggies, cut into bite sized pieces
    • olive oil
    • garlic powder
    • salt
    • pepper
    Place veggies in a resealable plastic bag or in a bowl with a tight-sealing lid.  Drizzle with 1 to 2 Tbsp. olive oil, seal bag or bowl, and gently shake until veggies are coated with olive oil.  Pour onto an oiled cookie sheet in a single layer, sprinkle with desired seasonings, and bake at 375° - 400° until veggies are fork-tender.  The time will vary with the kind of veggie and the size of the pieces, but generally this takes 25 to 40 minutes.

    We love to roast beets, green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, asparagus, brussel sprouts, zucchini, peppers, and winter squash this way!

  • michiganmom116
    October 8, 2012 at 8:12 AM

    Simple Cinnamon Sweet potatoes:

    Open a large can of sweet potatoes, drain and mash. Put in casserole dish and drizzle with about 1/4 c. each melted butter or margarine and honey. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes.

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