Fruits and Vegetables – The Ultimate Convenience Foods

No time to eat healthy? I beg to differ.

However, I do completely understand the desire to grab a cookie (or three) on the fly, rather than an apple. What is it that draws us to choose the less nutritious treats, instead of simply grabbing a piece of fruit? Yeah, yeah, it’s likely the chocolate and the sugar. I know. The stuff is addicting and it tastes sooo good.

But we’re deceiving ourselves if we think we don’t have time to eat healthy food when ultimately, fruits and vegetables are the easiest, most convenient food items ever. Really. Did you ever stop and think about that?

We all like food that is fast to prepare and easy to eat. We often need to eat on the run or in a short amount of time. Does food get any easier than a banana? It’s pre-packaged for goodness sake! And the list goes on for dozens of delicious, grab and go fruit choices.

Now vegetables – that’s a different story. Often they take a little bit of time to prepare. But how about baby carrots, sugar snap peas, or grape tomatoes for a grab-and-go snack? And really, it just doesn’t take long to throw frozen vegetables into a pot and steam them to accompany your lunch or dinner.

I would say, in my experience, the most time consuming vegetable preparation involves those that I have to clean, peel, and slice…then steam or stir fry. But even that takes a max of about ten or fifteen minutes of brainless work.

farmers_market

Yes, fruits and vegetables are convenient, easy, delicious, and packed with wonderful nutrients our bodies crave. If you feel that you really don’t have time to eat a healthy diet, I encourage you to at least be intentional about eating several fruits and vegetables each day. You can do it!

~TIP~ Spend a few minutes after you get home from the store washing and preparing your vegetables. Slice, peel, dice, and put in air tight containers in your fridge for easy access all week long. You’ll be amazed at how easy it will be to then add great vegetables to your meals or to grab raw veggies from your fridge for a snack.

This is one of our favorite treats, packed with lots of nutrition –
Strawberry Peach Slushies (with hidden spinach!).
This takes about five minutes to prepare.

What are some of your favorite fruits and vegetables that you like to have on hand?

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Comments

  1. Tracy N. says

    Berries, clementines, grapes, frozen corn and peas (thawed). If I need a more substantial snack, I’ll grab fruit and a piece of my homemade bread. On another note, sometimes for dessert we have lemon yogurt and lots of blueberries. It’s delicious! Also, I have started adding strawberries, blueberries, and homemade whipped cream to my oatmeal. YUMMY! One of my favorite parts of summer time is the berries! I made too much of a green smoothie this week. I was very sad because we have put them in the fridge to drink later and they are not tasty SO I decided to freeze it in my popsicle molds. We ate them today and they were great!

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    Brooke Reply:

    I would say that peas FROZEN are great too! my kids love them :)

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  2. says

    My guys are great about eating fruit and veggies for a snack. I am the one that craves carbs. I need to work on making a change in my snacking.

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    Beth Reply:

    Bananas, apples, frozen blueberries, and oranges are our staples but we also love mango, watermelon, cantaloupe, etc. Mangoes are on sale for $0.50 each right now so I got a bunch to freeze for mango sorbet (I’m getting up to process them in 5 minutes – really! :) )

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  3. Christina D says

    My mother in law says that eating whole foods requires too much time and work and is amazed that I am not feeding my family any processed foods, especially with a new baby in the house.

    We are participating in a CSA right now so we always have plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables on hand. My staple veggies vary depending on what the CSA gives us, but basically it’s: carrots (not in our CSA right now, but I buy them organic at the store… my 2 year old loves carrot sticks!), kale (another favorite of my 2 year old are kale chips), and sugar snap peas.

    Fruits also vary with the CSA. We’ve been getting lots of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and cherries. All great snacking material or they get put on oatmeal in the morning.

    One thing I like to do to save time for breakfast is make refrigerator oatmeal the night before. Just add oats, whole milk, yogurt, honey, fruit in a mason jar, put the cover on it, and shake it up. Put it in the refrigerator and by morning the oats have soaked up the liquids and it’s a nice, quick, tasty breakfast. No cooking required! I also like to do make ahead smoothies too.

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    melissa Reply:

    a recipe for the oatmeal would be awesome :) that’s the second time this week that something like this has been mentioned and I’m curious as to the recipe for it

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    Christina D Reply:

    http://www.theyummylife.com/Refrigerator_Oatmeal

    Here you go Melissa! That particular site uses chia seeds in the oatmeal as well, but I usually leave those out since I rarely have them on hand. The oatmeal turns out fine without them :)

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    Christina D Reply:

    Oh and I use whole milk yogurt and whole milk in the recipe and it turned out great. I suspect the chia seeds are more important if you use a thinner, non-dairy milk or skim milk.
    (like the writer of the recipe did)

    melissa Reply:

    oh excellent – thank you so much – we will definitely be trying this out this next week!!!

  4. says

    We like to keep bananas and baby carrots for snacks. They are delicious and easy. Eating healthy is easy! Trying to eat out and eat healthy, well that’s another topic. Stay home, eat healthy, save money :)

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  5. Anonymous says

    Actually, the pre-washed, sliced, diced fruit and veggie idea may seem like a time saver, but when produce is washed, it spoils faster. Also, cutting it into pieces speeds up spoilage and more nutrients are lost. I recommend not washing anything until just before you serve it (even lettuce or spinach for salad loses nutrients if you pre-wash it then store it or let it sit in water too long). It may seem like this saves time, but I have found that it actually wastes time because I have to return to the grocery sooner than expected to replace produce that hasn’t made it through the week.

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