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I hate most veggies. Mayday!


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I'm a 35 yo mom in WA state, working full time and married w 3 kids. I WANT to do a Whole30, but it sounds really challenging given the fact that I cook for my family--my family eats good food (in my opinion) but not as strict as this. My kids eat quinoa, beans, peanut butter, cheese, whole grain bread, etc--things that are not allowed. It sounds challenging for me to have a diet quite different from that of my family. 


Another challenge--I don't really like...vegetables. I like salad but not many other veggies--no mushrooms, eggplant, jicama, cooked peppers, summer squash/zucchini, etc. 

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You don't have to have a diet quite different from your family -- for meals you all eat together, you can make plenty of things you can eat, and if they want rice or quinoa with theirs, fix that. Meals that you eat separately from them, fix them things they want. I'd also point out, if you start making lots of vegetables now and don't make a big deal about how you don't like them, your kids are more likely to grow to like them.


As far as liking vegetables, you're just going to have to try a lot of vegetables, prepared a lot of different ways, and find the ones you like. I think over time, your taste buds will change some, plus there are so many vegetables out there, there are bound to be some you'll like. And how you prepare them makes so much difference. It can change the flavors and the textures. So just because you don't like a vegetable prepared one way, don't rule that vegetable out completely. Wait a week or two and try again, in a different recipe or prepared a different way. Think about what it was you didn't like about it (texture too mushy or too tough? bitter flavor? no flavor?) and then look for ways to address that.


Root veggies are best roasted, in my opinion -- it brings out a sweetness to them that helps offset the earthiness that some of them have. Beets in particular are an acquired taste -- I eat them, and I'm growing to like them more, but I doubt they'll ever be my all time favorite. Eggplant can be bitter to me sometimes, but I made some baba ganoush and  used it to dip carrots and celery in and it was really good. And, I was dipping veggies, in a veggie, so double the veggies  :D.  I don't particularly like peppers of any kind, so I don't eat them. Jicama I can't stand cooked, but I love it raw in salads -- or sometimes I make up a breakfast salad with chopped jicama, raw zucchini and yellow squash, carrots, snap peas, and maybe chop up an apple in it, squeeze a lemon or lime over the whole thing to keep it from getting brown -- I have that along with whatever I'm having for breakfast, and sometimes I'll also add it to salads later in the day to add some extra crunch and more substantial veggies than just the leafy greens. 


How are you preparing your summer squash and zucchini? I'll eat them steamed, but they're a bit boring. If I'm firing up the grill for my protein, I'll slice up zucchini and squash long ways (so they don't fall through the grate so easily), toss them in a bit of oil, add some salt and pepper, and grill them. I recently tried chayote squash done that way too, and it was good. 


Green beans are okay on a Whole30 -- how do you feel about them? I know it's considered wrong by many people,  but I grew up having them cooked until they were basically soggy, and I still kind of prefer them that way, so that's what I tend to do -- boil them in some broth with plenty of salt. But you can also roast them or steam them lightly so they're still crisp.


You don't mention broccoli or cauliflower. Both are good roasted. I recently made this Cocoa Toasted Cauliflower, and it was yummy, and last winter I made a lot of soups that used this basic recipe as a starting point, but I'd usually add butternut or acorn squash instead of carrots, and I'd often use a bag or two of frozen cauliflower when I didn't feel like chopping up the fresh stuff. And this Sweet and Salty Broccoli Salad is good too, if you can find W30 compliant bacon and raisins -- I did blanch the broccoli when I made it, instead of leaving it raw. I took it to a potluck at work and it was a hit.


How do you feel about sweet potatoes, spaghetti squash, butternut squash, acorn squash, or other winter squashes? They're good roasted, and they make good soups too. Plus, there's this Velvety Butternut Squash that is really good.


Even if you don't start a Whole30 right now, I'd recommend starting to add some vegetables to your rotation. Make it an adventure. Look up recipes on Pinterest, see what you think sounds like it might be good, and try it. If your kids are old enough to look at recipes, let them take turns picking recipes they want to try, and maybe let them help with the cooking (again, if they're old enough. Obviously, if they're 2 or 3, that's not an option) -- they'll be more likely to eat things they've chosen and helped with, and more veggies are always better for everyone.

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