How to Make Veggies Less Boring
A collection of fun and delicious veggie recipes
Written by Emily Chow, University of Alberta Student in the Nutrition and Food Science program at the University of Alberta and reviewed by our Health Stand Nutrition Dietitian Team
Are you tired of the same steamed, baked or sauteed veggies? Or perhaps you’re stuck and need some inspiration to add variety to your meals? We all know veggies are healthy, but it can be hard to keep them exciting to eat.
Here is a collection of unique veggie recipes that you need to try! These delicious veggie recipe ideas are perfect healthy side dishes that complement a wide range of meals. They might even make you love vegetables a little more!
Recipe adapted from Easy Healthy Recipes
What you need for the cauliflower steak recipe:
- 1 head cauliflower
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp chili powder
- Fresh parsley
- Preheat oven to 450F.
- Remove the leaves from the base using a sharp knife. Slice cauliflower in half, then slice 2 steaks about 1″ thick from each half.
- Mix the olive oil, sea salt, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika and chili powder in a small bowl.
- Place cauliflower steaks on a baking sheet and brush liberally with olive oil.
- Cook 15 minutes, then flip over.
- Cook additional 15 minutes.
- Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Portobello Mushroom Burger
Recipe adapted from A Couple Cooks
What you need for the portobello mushroom burger recipe:
- 4 portobello mushrooms
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 8 slices provolone or sharp cheddar cheese
- Preheat a grill to medium-high heat or preheat an oven to 450F.
- Clean portobello mushrooms and remove the stems. Place them on a baking sheet gill side up. Drizzle the tops with olive oil and use your hands to rub on the bottoms. Then place them back on the sheet gill side up and sprinkle with garlic powder, smoked paprika, kosher salt and several grinds of black pepper. Rub them until evenly coated.
- For the grilled method: Place the mushrooms directly on the grates gill side up, and grill 10 to 14 minutes until tender and juicy. Liquid will pool in the cap. Flip the mushrooms (this drains the liquid into the grates). Then top with the added cheese slices and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes until melted. Tip: Step up your burger and grill the burger buns for about 1 minute on one side until lightly toasted!
- For the roasted method: Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast for 15 minutes until tender. Drain any excess liquid, then top with cheese and roast another 1 minute until the cheese melts.
- Place the mushrooms on buns. Top with desired condiments.
Recipe adapted from Savoury Nothings
What you need for the zucchini boats recipe:
- 6 small-medium zucchini
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion finely diced
- 1 pound ground beef or ground beef and pork
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp garlic powder or 2 cloves freshly minced
- ½ tsp salt or more to taste pepper to taste
- 1 tomato sauce
- 1.5 cups shredded cheese
- Wash zucchini well, then slice in half lengthwise. Scoop out flesh with a small spoon and set aside. Place zucchini halves on baking sheet.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until soften, then add ground beef and cook until well browned. Stir in tomato paste, oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
- Stir in tomato sauce and scooped-out zucchini flesh, then simmer, covered, on low heat for 10 minutes. Remove the lid, stir well and simmer for another 5 minutes.
- Heat oven to 360F. Spoon filling in prepared zucchini halves. Sprinkle with cheese and bake 20-25 minutes until bubbly.
Recipe adapted from Delish
What you need for the stuffed peppers recipe:
- ½ cup uncooked rice
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1 ½ tsp dried oregano
- Kosher salt
- Black pepper
- 6 bell peppers, tops and cores removed
- 1 cup shredded Monterey jack
- Fresh chopped parsley
- Preheat oven to 400°F. In a small saucepan, prepare rice according to package instructions. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Cook onion until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more. Add ground beef and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until no longer pink, 6 minutes. Drain fat.
- Return beef mixture to skillet, then stir in cooked rice and diced tomatoes. Season with oregano, salt, and pepper. Let simmer until liquid has reduced slightly, about 5 minutes.
- Place peppers cut side-up in a 9″-x-13″ baking dish and drizzle with oil. Spoon beef mixture into each pepper and top with Monterey jack, then cover baking dish with foil.
- Bake until peppers are tender, about 35 minutes. Uncover and bake until cheese is bubbly, 10 minutes more.
- Garnish with parsley before serving.
Spiral Cucumber Salad
Recipe adapted from I Heart Umami
What you need for the spiral cucumber salad recipe:
- 6 mini cucumbers
- 1 tsp coarse sea salt
- Sprinkle toasted black and white sesame seeds (optional)
- Sesame Dressing:
- 1 tbsp white sesame seeds
- 4 tbsp mayo
- 1.5 tbsp rice vinegar
- 3 tbsp coconut aminos
- ½ to 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
- 2 tsp tahini
- Rinse and pat dry the cucumbers. Trim the tip ends.
- Place one cucumber between two chopsticks (that you don’t mind being scuffed up).
- Make thin straight cuts on the top, about 2 mm slices.
- Flip the cucumber over (with the unsliced surface facing you), and make thin slices on a diagonal at 45 degrees.
- In a large bowl, add the cucumbers and sprinkle with salt. Use your hands to rub the salt into each piece gently. Set a timer and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
- In a dry cast iron skillet, add the sesame seeds and toast over low heat for about 2-3 minutes. Stir the seeds often with a spatula or gently rock the skillet back and forth to keep the sesame from burning.
- Off heat, grind the seeds with a pestle and mortar (or clean coffee grinder) until smooth.
- In a medium-sized bowl, add all the ingredients from sesame seeds to tahini, Whisk and stir until creamy smooth. Taste and make seasoning adjustments to your own liking.
- For a thinner texture, add 1.2 tbsp water at a time until desired consistency.
- Rinse cucumbers under cold tap water food 3-4 times and pat them dry with a clean kitchen towel.
- Combine the cucumbers with the dressing right before serving. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds, if desired. Serve cold.
There you have it! A list of unique veggie recipes to turn boring veggies into ones that will hopefully spark joy.
Which ones are you most interested in trying? Comment below!
Don’t miss out on healthy new recipes or nutrition articles, and sign up for our newsletter, today!
Looking for more healthy, convenient recipes for when you’re stuck on what to make?
Don’t miss out on our weekly nutrition newsletter, Sound Bites. Our newsletter is a credible source of nutrition information for healthy living. It includes recipes, videos, tips and more!
As a special BONUS, we’ll email you our popular ’51 Healthy Snack Attacks’ PDF.
Check out more veggie recipes and nutrition tips on the blog here:
Brought to you by our friendly Registered Dietitian team at Health Stand Nutrition Consulting Inc. For more balanced living advice check out our RESOURCE MEGA BANK of nutrition articles, videos, healthy recipes, newsletters and meal planning kits here: www.healthstandnutrition.com/personal-nutrition/resource-mega-bank/