8 Winter Veggies to Try Tonight
If you’re trying to eat more veggies, choosing seasonal produce can help — fruits and veggies typically have the most flavor when they’re locally grown and in-season. But how can you eat seasonally in the middle of winter? That’s where winter vegetables come in. Winter veggies can help you get out of your “green beans again?!” rut, and they provide a variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant benefits.
Raw or steamed, roasted or braised, here are 8 winter vegetables to add to your meal plan when the thermostat drops.
The dirt-like, earthy taste of beets isn’t for everyone. But if you’re on Team Beet, you know this winter vegetable is tasty raw or roasted. Add sliced or grated beets to a salad, or roast them in the oven to make them even sweeter and more tender. A cup of beets contains fiber, potassium, iron, and folate.
2. Brussels Sprouts
As the weather gets cooler, you’ll start seeing stalks of brussels sprouts in the produce aisle. These bite-sized winter vegetables are a member of the cruciferous vegetable family — just like kale, cabbage, and broccoli — and they provide vitamin A, vitamin C, and fiber. Shave raw sprouts to make a delicious winter slaw, or roast them in the oven for a sweeter, mellow flavor. Try topping roasted sprouts with chopped bacon and fresh Parmesan, or with balsamic vinegar, mustard, or Gruyère cheese.
Think beyond coleslaw when it comes to cabbage. Winter is the perfect time to throw chopped cabbage into stir-fry recipes, stuff whole leaves with ground beef, or even roast the head whole! Cabbage provides vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate. Red cabbage in particular is a key source of a type of flavonoid called anthocyanins.
Milder than kale, but heartier than spinach, chard is a leafy green you’ll want to add into your winter veggie rotation. In addition to livening up your winter plate, brightly colored rainbow Swiss chard contains vitamins A, C, and K, along with betalains, a type of plant pigment that may have antioxidant-like properties. Eat chard raw in salads, add it to soups and stews, or sauté it with olive oil and mix it into a grain bowl.
For a while, kale had a reputation as a hippie-dippie veggie. But even if you aren’t on board with the idea of kale brownies, you can still enjoy this leafy green winter vegetable and all its nutritional benefits. A 4-ounce serving of kale provides more than your daily recommended intake for vitamins A, C, and K. Sauté it with onions and garlic and mix it into your morning eggs; blend it into an afternoon smoothie; or massage raw kale and add it to a winter salad.
These winter veggies — which provide vitamin A, vitamin K, and iron — look like giant scallions, but they’re milder and more tender. Clean them well by cutting them in half and thoroughly rinsing out soil that can get trapped into the leek’s many layers, then sauté them in olive oil. Stir them into a grain bowl, puree them for soup, or serve them as a side for winter dishes featuring chicken or potatoes.
This winter root veggie is a cousin of the carrot, but with an earthier, nuttier flavor. Parsnips provide vitamin C and folate, along with 6 grams of fiber per cup. Roast them in the oven with olive oil, salt, and pepper — then enjoy them as is, or puree them for a stew or winter vegetable soup.
8. Winter Squash
As the name suggests, winter squash — like butternut squash, acorn squash, spaghetti squash, or delicata — is one of the best vegetables to grow in winter. Its rich and satisfying flavors are perfect for cozy winter recipes, and most varieties of squash provide vitamin A, vitamin C, and fiber. Bake halved squash in the oven, steam peeled squash on the stovetop, or roast cubed squash to puree into a hearty soup.
4 Winter Vegetable Recipes to Make Today
Hungry? Try out some of these delicious winter vegetable recipes to keep your diet nutrient-dense and your tummy full all winter long.