Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Eat More Veggies! (Allison's November Blitz Challenge)

Eat More Veggies! (Allison's November Blitz Challenge)

My friend Allison inspired me several years ago with a challenge:

Make one small change in two areas of your health, do it for 3 weeks, and come to a party at my house at the end.  For charity!

Increase your daily servings of fruits and vegetables with these easy tips and tricks.

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There are more details (click here to see Allison's blog all about it!) but the key take aways for me were the idea (two small changes) and the timing that she chose:  Allison starts her challenge the day after Halloween (so, November 1).  Her three week blitz usually ends right before Thanksgiving (the 3rd Thursday in November).  So with a house full of candy and the holiday feasting looming, I was focused on small changes and self-improvement.


My small change is usually to eat between 5 and 9 servings of vegetables and fruit each day.

image of summer farm share box with radishes, carrots, and plenty of greens
and with a farm share like this, it's an easy change!

I usually have an exercise change too, but this is a food blog so I'll keep the focus on food.

I do better trying to eat something, instead of trying not to eat something else.  I figure, if I fill up on veggies and fruits, there is less room and less desire for the more fat- and sugar-laden treats in my house.  

It works for me.

Here's a sample of ways I incorporate more veggies and fruits into my day:


collage of breakfast dishes incorporating vegetables and fruits
Clockwise from top right:
Try a green smoothie! This one is spinach & apple.
Chop up red onion, bell pepper, and kale.  Sauté in butter, then add in eggs to make scrambled eggs. Try a red smoothie!  This one is beet greens, banana, and blueberries.
What about an omelet? Spinach, mushroom, and green pepper made this delicious.
One green smoothie isn't enough-what about lacinato kale, banana, and pineapple?
Do you like breakfast sandwiches?  Add sautéed spinach to your favorite combination.
A Sunday morning breakfast here-scrambled eggs with onion, pepper, celery, mushroom, and squash all finely diced.  Served with sausage, pancakes, and a smoothie.
Another omelet--spinach and feta!
And in the center--these baked eggs.


collage of lunch dishes incorporating vegetables and fruits
Clockwise from top right:
Add shredded carrots, minced parsley, and diced celery to your favorite chicken salad, serve on lettuce.
Make summer rolls with leftover Chicken Adobo! (recipe here)
Braise some cooking greens (these are turnip and mustard) serve with mac 'n cheese and cornbread.
My kid's favorite lunch--yakisoba! (recipe right here)
Sandwiches--when you put lettuce on your sandwich, don't skimp!  Use a huge handful.  I now put a serving of salad greens, 1 cup, on my sandwich.  Serve with pickled veggies and fruit on the side.
Tacos! A great way to stretch meat, like I show here.
And the big one-my new favorite grilled cheese sandwich! (recipe right here)


collage of vegetable and fruit-filled snacks

Clockwise from top right: Keep it simple with veggies and dip!
Add veggies to muffins! These are Nutella and Zucchini (recipe here).
Smoothies, not just for breakfast anymore! (This one is beet, banana, and berry).
A quick snack--the humble radish sandwich!
Sweet potato and Reese's pieces cookies (recipe right here).
A schmear of beet and goat cheese dip on crackers or bread!
I love carrots & hummus, but after slicing up the farm share veggies I found I like Daikon and hummus as well.  If the veggies are sliced up and ready to go in the fridge, everyone gets in on the action.
Got pickles?  Eat them!  I was a pickling fool this summer and here's a sampling.


collage of dinner dishes incorporating fruits and vegetables
Clockwise from top right: Green Tomato Garlic Chili and cornbread.
Pesto (with goat cheese, and loads of tomato and lettuce) on a turkey burger.
My spouse's favorite casserole! (recipe right here)
Chicken Adobo with sautéed farm fresh veggies (link here).
More green tomatoes--in Cabin Casserole!
A quickie for a busy night-Sausage and Peppers!
And in the center, my favorite way to enjoy farm fresh veggies in the summer--a BLT.

By incorporating vegetables and fruits into each meal it means that, come dinnertime, I'm not trying to cram 5 servings of salad onto my small plates.  Oooh!  Small plates!  A great idea! If you haven't switched to smaller plates, try that as a small change.  The plates that we use every day are luncheon plates, about 8 inches across.

For more ideas please see my Visual Recipe Index by Ingredient, a resource for folks like me eating from the farm share, the farmer's market, the garden, the neighbor's garden, and great deals on ugly produce at the grocery store.

I'm sharing more recipes on my Pinterest boards, follow me there. If you like a good peek behind the scenes like I do, follow me on Instagram. Need a good read? I'm sharing articles of interest on my Facebook page, follow me there. Want to know How to Use This Blog?

Try my friend Allison's challenge.

If you were to make 1 small change, food-wise, what would you change?


  1. mmm, thanks for reminding me about the green smoothies. My favorite is vanilla yogurt, spinach and pineapple. Not sure I'm brave enough for the red smoothies. Someday will you post a good veggie recipe I can freeze? Ideally, I can cook on Sundays and then eat throughout the week. Right now the only thing in my freezer is a box of toaster waffles. So sad! Glad you are blitzing and I'm ready...right after I stuff the rest of this Halloween candy in my mouth.

  2. Wow, I don't even know what's in that grilled cheese sandwich, but I sure do want to try it. It looks so good. In fact, all the pictures look really good. You cook that stuff and it'll be easy to get you extra servings of veggies. In fact, you cook that stuff and I may come over.

    I see you're drinking your beets...have you tried them raw yet? I blend mine, along with an orange, some carrots, OJ, and lemon juice until it's very fine and thing. More of a juice like texture than a typical smoothie.

    1. I am loving beet smoothies and I'm so glad you posted about them! I slice off the tops and roots for the composting pigs, peel an orange, add a carrot (tops and tips to the pigs again, they are happy pigs). Sometimes I add honey, and sometimes I get distracted while pouring in the honey . . . but ice and water and then I blend. I need to set the lemon juice bottle out so I remember it. Thank you so much for that smoothie recipe--and thanks for stopping by!

  3. Loving your PicMonkey Collages :) So much yumminess!

    Thanks for linking up and sharing your goodies with the rest of the party...

    1. Heather, Thanks so much for hosting! I've gotten so many good ideas from your parties, you should sell Tupperware or make up or sex toys or something . . .

      Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Hey Kirsten, Sounds like something I should do. I have added a green drink made with kale in the mornings. That's a start.