What are your favorite veggie recipes?
February 9, 2010 1:40 PM   Subscribe

What are your favorite veggie recipes?

I'm looking for some easy and TASTY veggie recipes. Nothing too complicated, please. Just looking for really great taste. Trying to add veggies to my diet without sacrificing flavor. Please, no recipes with heavy sauces or anything that will add a lot of calories.
posted by kdern to Food & Drink (33 answers total) 98 users marked this as a favorite
my very favorite veggie dish right now is couscous tabouli (or standard tabouli, using bulger wheat).

cook couscous - chill it for at least an hour (i do it overnight)
chop parsley, a cucumber, tomatoes (i use a bag of vine ripened, small tomatoes), green pepper, green onions, garlic (i use the food processor and make a sort of chunky salsa)
mix - add a little vinaigrette
let sit in the fridge for 30 minutes or so
add a little feta

i make a huge bowl of it and then eat it all week.
posted by nadawi at 1:43 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Cut up some sweet potatoes. Toss with a little olive oil, salt, pepper and...well, we use chili powder, rosemary - like that. Wrap in foil and toss on the grill, or spread them out on a cookie sheet and roast in a hot oven until tender. Deeeelicious.
posted by rtha at 1:54 PM on February 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

Trying to add veggies to my diet without sacrificing flavor.

Invest in spices. Try sweet potato, steamed or boiled, with top shelf cinnamon; broccoli, stir-fried or steamed, with fresh ginger; parsnips, braised, with curry powder; anything, however you like, with genuine Parmesan cheese.
posted by Iridic at 1:57 PM on February 9, 2010

Bruschetta... oh man.

Fresh french bread cooked, cut up and then brushed with olive oil and in the oven till toasty.
Topped with chopped roma tomatoes - 3 or 4, chopped basil, 1/2 cup, 2 tbsp of olive oil, 2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, 3 cloves crushed garlic, pinch of sea salt and pinch of ground pepper, 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese.

OOOOOOH man! Molto Bene!
posted by ExitPursuedByBear at 1:58 PM on February 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

Throw a bunch of baby carrots (or chop up regular carrots into rings, slices or sticks) in a shallow baking pan. Drizzle with olive oil and honey or maple syrup. Add some chopped fresh garlic, salt and pepper (and rosemary if you're feeling fancy). Stir everything up. Bake at 350˚ for 30-45 minutes, until the carrots on the edges are looking a bit shriveled and the ones in the middle can be easily pierced with a fork.

This also works for beets, sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, zucchini, squash, turnips, rutabaga, and pretty much every other winter vegetable you can think of. You can also substitute balsamic vinegar for the honey/maple syrup and play around with spices.

You should also check out 101 Cookbooks — it's an amazing recipe blog with beautiful photos, and most of the recipes are vegetable-based.
posted by rebekah at 2:01 PM on February 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

Not original to me but this one is yummy and easy:

Sautéed Spinach With Toasted Sesame Oil


* 2 teaspoon oil, toasted sesame
* 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
* 2 clove(s) garlic, minced
* 2 teaspoon ginger root, minced
* 10 ounce(s) spinach, fresh, tough stems removed
* 2 teaspoon vinegar, rice
* 1 teaspoon soy sauce, reduced-sodium

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add sesame seeds, garlic and ginger; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add spinach and cook, stirring, until just wilted, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vinegar and soy sauce.

Serve immediately.
posted by bearwife at 2:02 PM on February 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

Thanks for the responses so far... to clarify, I'm looking for vegetable dishes, not just vegetarian dishes. Thanks!
posted by kdern at 2:04 PM on February 9, 2010

Here's another outrageous vegetable recipe from cooking light:

Roasted Asparagus with Balsamic Browned Butter
Best Vegetable Side Dish. We love the way the salty-sweet browned butter highlights the asparagus in this dish. --Recipe by David Bonom (September 2001)

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 5 spears)

* 40 asparagus spears, trimmed (about 2 pounds)
* Cooking spray
* 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
* 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
* 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
* Cracked black pepper (optional)
* Grated lemon rind (optional)


Preheat oven to 400°.

Arrange asparagus in a single layer on a baking sheet; coat with cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until tender.

Melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat; cook 3 minutes or until lightly browned, shaking pan occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in soy sauce and balsamic vinegar. Drizzle over asparagus, tossing well to coat. Garnish with cracked pepper and rind, if desired.
Nutritional Information

45 (60% from fat)
3g (sat 1.8g,mono 0.9g,poly 0.2g)
posted by bearwife at 2:11 PM on February 9, 2010 [5 favorites]

I love oven roasted veggies. Asparagus, zucchini and eggplant are particularly good. You can do them all the same way; it really is as easy as this. They get all crunchy and a bit burned and very yummy.
posted by DarlingBri at 2:11 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

To add flavor without calories:
  • fresh lemon juice
  • vinegar, possibly with oil, as fancy as you like
  • salt. Don't forget about salt.
Will work with steamed broccoli, asparagus, green beans, greens cooked any way, cabbage, salads / lettuce, etc.
posted by amtho at 2:17 PM on February 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

Saute the veggies in a bit of butter and a dash of salt (and maybe a sprinkle of sugar) until a fork goes through them easily but they are still firm enough for a bit of crunch. Overcooking vegetables makes the baby Jesus cry. At the very end, splash in some good basalmic vinegar.
posted by rhapsodie at 2:19 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Trying to add veggies to my diet without sacrificing flavor.

I'm in the same boat as you. One of my favorite tricks is to keep a supply of celery, carrots, and onions always on hand. I chop them up and use them often. My 2 favorites:

Make a nice stir-fry with rice. There are lots of stir-fry sauces that are low in calories.

I add a generous helping when I pan-fry a lean steak. The veggies take on the juices and flavors of the steak and add plenty of nutrition and flavor with almost no calories. Plus I'm a fan of single-dish dinners.
posted by The Deej at 2:25 PM on February 9, 2010

OK, this is it for me (love veggies, that's why I've dropped in so often with recipes):

Baked Eggplant and Onions


* 2 cup(s) eggplant, diced with skin
* 1/2 tablespoon oil, olive
* 1 cup(s) onion(s), chopped

Preheat oven to 425 F. Toss epplant and onions in olive oil to coat. Place vegetables in ceramic dish in the middle of the oven. Bake for about 15-25 minutes, until soft and browning. Serve immediately.

Baked Sweet Potato With Toasted Almonds


* 2 medium potato(es), sweet
* 2 tablespoon nuts, almonds, slivers, toasted


Pierce sweet potato with fork and microwave until cooked through (about 5-6 minutes).

Place on plate and peel if desired.

Top with toasted almonds, and serve.

Balsamic Tomatoes and Cucumbers


* 1 tablespoon vinegar, balsamic
* 1 tomato(es), medium size, sliced
* 1/4 cucumber(s), use 1/4 of a 3.75"x3" size; slice

Drizzle balsamic vinegar over tomato and cucumber slices and toss.

Broccoli With Caramelized Onions and Pine Nuts


* 3 tablespoon nuts, pine nuts, or chopped slivered almonds
* 2 teaspoon oil, olive, extra virgin
* 1 cup(s) onion(s), chopped
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 4 cup(s) broccoli florets
* 2 teaspoon vinegar, balsamic
* freshly ground pepper, to taste

Toast pine nuts (or almonds) in a medium, dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until lightly browned and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl to cool.

Add oil to the pan and heat over medium heat. Add onion and salt; cook, stirring occasionally and adjusting heat as necessary, until soft and golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, steam broccoli until just tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the nuts, onion, vinegar, and pepper; toss to coat. Serve immediately.
posted by bearwife at 2:27 PM on February 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

Veggies that cook themselves

- Take a whole red bell pepper, and another orange or yellow one. Chop into half-inch slivers, remove seeds, etc.
- Grab a zucchini, wash it. Take your vegetable peeler or mandolin and create thin strips lengthwise.
- Do you like parsnips? Chop up some of those.
- Chop up about a quarter of a red onion
- Two garlic cloves. Remove skin, and crush slightly with the side of the blade of a large knife (just enough force to squish it and open it up)
- Put all of these ingredients in one of those large foil pans that some people cook lasagne in
- Add a little olive oil and a little butter
- Also, add some black pepper and salt

Put the pan right on the barbecue until the peppers go slightly black and start to shrivel.
posted by nickheer at 2:28 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

There are a bunch of great food threads involving veggies on the EatMe page of the Metafilter wiki (and this one should probably be added too!).
posted by Kimberly at 2:40 PM on February 9, 2010

If you are looking for food with heavy vegetables, but not neccesarily vegetarian, stir fry is super easy.

Take some shredded cabbage, carrots, brocolli, bell peppers, onions, chicken if you want it, etc, saute with a little olive oil and add some fresh grated ginger or some teriyaki/ soy sauce to taste.

Serve over rice or my favorite way - just with some iceberg or romaine (iceberg works better as a wrapper, but romaine is healthier) as lettuce wraps.
posted by CharlieSue at 2:42 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

This recipe for Roasted Acorn Squash is amazing, I use dried thyme.

This Minestrone is one of my favorite recipes. (I leave out the spinach) It can be made vegetarian if you use veggie broth instead of chicken broth. The great thing about this Minestrone is that it is a good base to add lots of other vegetables. I've added all sorts of veggies (fresh, canned, or frozen), my favorites have been squash, zucchini, corn, peas, carrots, and potatoes. I've also added different kinds of rice. I like to add the meat from one of those supermarket rotisserie chickens too. The basic recipe by itself is really filling, and it can be really versatile. This is the recipe that I just keep the ingredients on hand for when I don't have a lot of time to make dinner, or I'm not feeling well. Even my husband loves it, and he is a real meat and potatoes kind of guy.
posted by TooFewShoes at 2:46 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

My favorite way to eat asparagus is:

Spread a bunch over a tray, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic salt/powder. Broil for about ten minutes. After slightly wilted, sprinkle with shredded cheddar or other cheese. So easy, so tasty.

This also works with just about every other vegetable. Even the dreaded brussels sprout.
posted by BusyBusyBusy at 2:48 PM on February 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

Heat two teaspoons of olive oil in a pan on medium high. Mince a couple of cloves of garlic, and throw it in along with a couple of tablespoons of golden raisins and a tablespoons of pine nuts, and saute for about 30 seconds. Throw in a 10 ounce bag of spinach and cook into the spinach is wilted. Take it off the heat, and add a couple of teaspoons of balsamic vinegar and a pinch of salt. Top with a little shaved parmesan and some freshly ground black pepper. Super yummy! Serves two, and comes out a little over 150 calories per serving (about half of the calories are from fat, but it's good fat).
posted by amarynth at 2:58 PM on February 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

I usually hate broccoli, but I love it if it's roasted. Cut into thin slices, toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and roast at 450 for 10-15 minutes, or until the florets start to get brown and crispy.

Doesn't taste like broccoli at all, which is a good thing.
posted by mudpuppie at 2:58 PM on February 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

My favourite easy veggie dish is to cut up a mix of whatever vegetables I have at hand into 2cm chunks (a mix of eggplant, zuccini, sweet potato, mushrooms, onion, and asparagus works well). Toss with a little olive oil and a pinch of salt, and roast in the oven for 30 or so minutes at 200C until soft. 1/2 way through cooking I sprinkle the veggies with lemon juice and toss again.

Goes well with grilled lamb or steak, or you can turn this into a meal by itself by topping with a poached egg. Or divide the roasted vegetables into ovenproof dishes, top with some cubed low fat feta and place under the grill till the cheese starts to melt (I use camembert or brie sometimes to make it more indulgent).

Oven baked ratatouille is essentially the same deal, but I would omit the sweet potato, mushrooms and lemon, and add some chopped capsicum (sweet red pepper), either quartered fresh tomato or tinned tomatoes and a couple of bay leaves.
posted by arha at 3:03 PM on February 9, 2010

Oh, and oven roasted cauliflower is delicious, cooked along the lines of mudpuppie's broccoli above.
posted by arha at 3:04 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

I love veggies, but I've been trying to get new ones into my repertoire. Here's the basic approaches I've taken so far:

Frisee + Lemon + Maple Syrup = Crazy Delicious. (You can omit the anchovies imo. I like it sans the heavy salty/umami the anchovies bring.)

Ever braise parsnips? Well, why the hell not?

Turnips are amazing in curry. I simply sautee them in ghee and indian curry and it's a really easy vegetable dish that tastes lovely.

Braised Endives which are then topped with cheesy crumb mixture and baked are awesome too. (But expensive! Growing endives is a bit of work, though, so it makes sense.)

I love fennel, simply sliced and roasted with onions and beets.

In fact, roasted veggies with tofu, chilled, is a wonderful lunch.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 3:04 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

OK, Ambrosia Voyeur got me going . . . my husband does a version of the following recipe, using turnips, parsnips and carrots. I adore it. Any root veggies will work. You can cut back on the olive oil, or use none at all or balsamic vinegar instead.


* 1 large butternut squash, (1 1/2 to 2 pounds) halved, seeded and peeled
* 3 large Yukon gold potatoes (1 1/2 pounds), scrubbed
* 1 bunch medium beets, (about 1 1/2 pounds), scrubbed and tops trimmed
* 1 medium red onion
* 2 large parsnips (about 8 ounces)
* 1 head garlic, cloves separated, and peeled (about 16)
* 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
* 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
* Freshly ground black pepper


Place 2 baking sheets in the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F.

Cut all the vegetables into 1 1/2-inch pieces. Cut the onions through the base core to keep some of the layers in chunky pieces. (Also cut pith from especially big parsnips) Toss all the vegetables with garlic, olive oil and salt in large bowl. Season generously with pepper.

Carefully remove the heated baking sheets from the oven, brush or drizzle with olive oil. Divide the vegetables evenly between the 2 pans, spreading them out to assure they don't steam while roasting. Roast the vegetables until tender and golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
posted by bearwife at 3:24 PM on February 9, 2010

Kale! You wash it, chop it into manageable chunks, and toss it in a pan with some onions, garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper, and (if you're feeling hedonistic) some butter and bacon. Then you cover the pan and cook on medium-low-ish heat until the kale is a vivid green and wilty and delicious.

Yeah, my instructions are vague, but it's really hard to screw up. You can find more detailed recipes online if you search for "sautéed kale."
posted by oinopaponton at 3:26 PM on February 9, 2010

I got lots of good suggestions in response to this question about roasted veggies. In general, I find that roasting veggies is the easiest and most reliable way to cook them.
posted by craichead at 4:15 PM on February 9, 2010

Lightly steamed asparagus with just a little of the Trader Joe's wasabi sesame drizzling sauce drizzled on and some coarse sea salt. I really like the little thin asparagus like this. This is also especially good chilled and eaten for lunch the next day. Don't overcook. Yum.
posted by snowjoe at 6:03 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

Are beans okay? Because black beans + corn + onion + red pepper + lime juice = heaven. Add whatever veggies you would like, add feta cheese, add some vinegar, the possibilities are endless!
posted by dpx.mfx at 6:04 PM on February 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

I am addicted to the best broccoli of your life.
posted by rabidsegue at 7:39 PM on February 9, 2010 [2 favorites]

I am seconding whoever said get top shelf parmesan.

I am spending about $6 a week in parmesan just for salads, more than worth it.

My favorite salad of late, copied from my favorite pizzeria, is as follows:

Lay the same amount of arugula, julienned radiccio and julienned endives alongside each other on a plate. Drizzle with an olive oil, salt, pepper and lime juice dressing. Shave as much parmesan as you want on top. We use a vegetable peeler to slice the parmesan.

This salad is so good it is all I eat some days.
posted by dirty lies at 12:14 AM on February 10, 2010

This vegetarian chili recipe is really great:

Add a can of drained black beans to the recipe also.

posted by mbarryf at 5:45 AM on February 10, 2010

I've mentioned it before I'm sure, but a delicious way to have eggplant is to boil it and then serve it dressed with a bit of fresh garlic, salt, lemon juice, and chili pepper. This works best with the small Chinese variety.

Allow me to be the lone dissenter against roasting. Personally, I don't think it's any easier than any other basic kind of cooking, with the exception that you can "set it and forget it" I suppose. I find that roasting vegetables really only works if there's a good amount of oil on them, so if you're really watching calories steaming or boiling is a much better option.

In my experience, starchier vegetables (potatoes and other root vegetables, mostly) don't take well to steaming but boil just fine. You can make mashed almost-any-kind-of-root-vegetable. I've had excellent luck with turnips and rutabagas, cooked until fork-tender and then mashed with salt and pepper (you don't need butter, cream, or milk -- you can always thin it with a bit of the cooking water if necessary).

The nice thing about boiling or steaming is that because water boils at a consistent temperature, you get pretty consistent cooking. Basically, just check the veggies every so often and when you can move a fork in them, they're done. Go on the al dente side because they will continue to cook even after you turn off the heat.

Cabbage is wonderful steamed or boiled with just a sprinkle of salt and pepper. It honestly needs nothing else. If you're up for raw, you can make a kind of slaw with just cabbage, salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

You can always sneak vegetables into other foods. Just today I made a pasta sauce (okay, I used sauce from a bottle) that was 50% sweet potato. Just mash up the sweet potato and mix it in with the sauce and correct flavoring and texture with pasta water, salt, and balsamic vinegar. There are loads of recipes out there where portions of a traditional food are replaced with pureed vegetables (this is mostly to get veggies into the stomachs of finicky children).

Soups are an excellent way to add vegetables to your diet. Start with a base of onions and carrots (add celery if you want the traditional mire poix, but just onions and carrots is plenty) and then fill up on any kind of vegetables you want. The trick to flavor is adding stock or bouillon. I love Better Than Bouillon which is a sort of paste that comes in a jar. If you eat fish, then you can make fish soup, which is really excellent. You start with onions and garlic, sauteed, then add carrots (sliced rounds) and celery. Add water, then parsnips (the secret ingredient!) and then red bell pepper pieces. Finally, add whitefish chopped into pieces just slightly larger than bite sized. My mom would just hack a frozen fish fillet into pieces and believe it or not that works wonderfully. This is a soup bursting with flavor, loaded up with veggies, and packs a nutritious wallop for its calories.
posted by Deathalicious at 10:48 PM on February 10, 2010

I'm always a fan of black bean and lentil soup. If you have a Whole Foods or any grocery that offers bulk - beans and legumes are often quite affordable.
I never really "measure" out my ingredients. But here's the run down basically -
Soak black beans over night draining and cleaning once or twice. Lentils don't require as much soaking time.
Then I fill a large pot enough to cover the beans and maybe fill enough so the water submerges two or three inches above where the beans rest. Bring to a boil and then bring to medium heat.
In a sauce pan - saute however many cloves of minced garlic as you'd like (I usually do 4-5) and a half to whole onion. When soften and aromatic, add to the beans.
Then I kind of just add whatever spices - sea salt, coarse ground black pepper, cumin (always).
For beans I'll perhaps add a can of diced tomatoes, some bay leaves, red pepper flakes, dried cilantro, chives, etc.
For lentils I tend to add coriander, curry, garam masala, and/or dried herbs.
You know of just have to check periodically if the beans are cooked thoroughly (I really ought to time myself *shurg*). When they're soft enough, I bust out the immersion blender and blend the cooked ingredients halfway through so there is a varied consistency. If you don't have an immersion blender, pour half of the soup into a blender and blend (be careful because it'll be hot) and then return to the pot.
Hopefully that is too complex . . . it's really quite cheap and provides enough sustenance for several days.
posted by TwiceTheRice at 9:49 AM on February 12, 2010 [1 favorite]

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