Eating your vegetables has never been easier (and neither has polishing off a bowl of rice), thanks to these quick and simple side dish recipes.
Fried anything tastes better than anything not fried, but if you don't want to completely cancel out a vegetable's nutritional benefits, try oven-frying. These zucchini sticks (shown fourth from left) crisp up nicely and taste delicious on their own or dipped in marinara sauce.
Get the recipe: Parmesan Zucchini Fries
Although this dish makes a lovely Thanksgiving side, it's also easy enough to throw together on a weeknight alongside pork tenderloin or roast chicken. A few tablespoons of maple syrup and a 400-degree oven bring out the squash's earthy sweetness, making it more candy than veggie.
Get the recipe: Maple-Roasted Butternut Squash
If your picky eater will only touch one vegetable, chances are that it's potato. This recipe for mashed spuds incorporates garlic and parsley and has you leave the skin on, which makes it easier to prepare. (Bonus: fiber!)
Get the recipe: Garlic-Parsley Mashed Potatoes
A bowl of fluffy white grains is sometimes the only thing someone with a sensitive stomach or a picky palate will touch. That doesn't have to mean boring, though. Sautéing the grains first in some fat with garlic, onion and other seasonings, such as scallions and bay leaves, lends flavor and depth.
Get the recipe: Brazilian-Style Simple Pilaf
Remember what we said about some picky eaters only eating one vegetable (hello, potatoes)? If said eater extends his or her vegetable purview to include one more, we're betting it's corn. A smidgen of sugar and crisped bacon bits seal the deal.
Get the recipe: Sautéed Sweet Corn
We love that the ingredient list for this oozy veggie dish calls for "4 big handfuls fresh or frozen peas," a "knob of butter," a "big handful" of grated cheese, a lemon and ground white pepper. "If your kids won't eat their peas this way," celebrity chef Jamie Oliver says, "then they probably never will."
Get the recipe: Cheesy Peas
Cooking baby-cut carrots with orange juice and zest plus a little bit of butter and honey turns them crisp-tender and sweet-tart. If you prefer your vegetables softer, place them in lightly salted boiling water for three minutes, and drain before adding them to the skillet.
Get the recipe: Baby Carrots with Orange Glaze
Tricia Williams, founder of the food and nutritional counseling service Food Matters NYC, makes these perfectly crisp sweet potato wedges with coconut oil, coconut sugar (which has a faint caramel flavor, similar to light brown sugar), sea salt and chipotle powder. The result is a little sweet and a little spicy.
Get the recipe: Sweet and Spicy Sweet Potato Wedges
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