Carrots aren’t the only veggie that’s chocked full of health benefits. In fact, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 healthiest vegetables. Keep reading to find out what they are so you can stock up and have your late-night snack with no guilt attached.
10 Healthy vegetables to snack on
1. Rainbow Carrots
Eating carrots will do more than improve your vision. The antioxidant that gives carrots their bright orange color also has the potential to fight cancer. They make the perfect snack because it doesn’t take many of them to make you feel full.
Eating a handful of them at 10 PM beats getting a bowl of well, almost anything else because you won’t take in that many calories.
2. Sugar Snap Peas
Oh, snap! Sugar snap peas are not just a tasty snack, they’re also a healthy one. These little green guys are loaded with fiber, vitamins, and minerals, making them a great addition to any diet.
First off, sugar snap peas are a fantastic source of fiber, which helps keep your digestive system happy and your cholesterol levels in check. Plus, all that fiber will keep you feeling full and satisfied, so you won’t be tempted to snack on junk food later.
In addition to fiber, sugar snap peas are also packed with vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, vitamin K, and iron. So, not only will snacking on these green gems boost your immune system, but it will also help keep your bones strong and your blood healthy.
So next time you’re feeling peckish, reach for a handful of these little green guys and give yourself a pat on the back for making a healthy choice.
3. Sauteed Spinach
While eating a can of spinach won’t instantly turn you into a strong man, it will raise your calcium levels and increase your muscle strength. One cup will provide all the vitamin K you need for the day and give you over half of your recommended dose of vitamin A.
It contains helpful antioxidants that have the potential to decrease your risk of cancer and it’s heart-healthy. So, take a lesson from everyone’s favorite sailor and snack on it, put it in your salad, or blend it into a smoothie.
Also, sauteed spinach is a simple and delicious way to add some green goodness to any meal. Here are two ways to saute spinach that are sure to satisfy your taste buds:
- Garlic and olive oil: Heat some olive oil in a pan and add minced garlic. Cook the garlic until it becomes fragrant, then add the spinach to the pan. Toss the spinach until it wilts and is coated in the garlic and oil mixture. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper and enjoy!
- Lemon and butter: Melt some butter in a pan and add the spinach. Once the spinach has wilted, squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the top and give it a quick stir. The tangy lemon flavor pairs perfectly with the buttery spinach.
4. Raw Kale, Baked Kale Chips, or Sauteed Kale
Kale is the newest fad that people from all over are adding to their smoothies. It is a superfood so it’s popularity isn’t without reason. It contains a plant compound that has the potential to keep cancer away.
This compound is no longer effective if you cook the kale, however. So, if you want to take advantage of this benefit you’ll need to eat the vegetable raw.
On top of this helpful compound, it’s also full of vitamins K and C, beta creatine, and calcium. See what we mean by superfood?
Baking Kale is probably my favorite way to eat it. Here’s a simple recipe that I’m loving at the moment.
- 1 bunch of kale
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
- Rinse the kale and dry it thoroughly with a paper towel or a clean kitchen towel. Make sure the leaves are completely dry to ensure crispy chips.
- (Optional) Remove the thick stems from the kale leaves and tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces.
- In a large bowl, toss the kale with olive oil, salt, and pepper until the leaves are evenly coated.
- Spread the kale out in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the edges of the kale are brown and crispy. Be careful not to overcook the chips, as they can quickly burn.
- Remove the chips from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy as a healthy and delicious snack!
Feel free to adjust the seasoning to your taste preferences. You can also add other spices or flavors, such as garlic powder or nutritional yeast, to give the kale chips a different twist.
Eating Beets is a good way to get nitrates. If you’re unfamiliar with what nitrates are, they keep your blood pressure regulated. Beets are also a good source of fiber which means your digestive system loves them.
You can roast beets in the oven, or grate them and use them as a flavorful topping for sandwiches.
6. Red, Yellow, or Orange Bell Pepper
You can cut up and eat as many red bell peppers as you want because they’re quite low in calories. They contain double your recommended dose of vitamin C as well as vitamin B and beta carotene.
Like with kale, if you cook red bell peppers they lose some of the nutritional value that they possess. You’ll need to eat them raw if you want to reap the rewards.
Broccoli is delicious in almost any form and it has cancer-fighting potential. They offer heart protection and help with certain chronic diseases as well.
On top of these amazing feats, broccoli is bursting with vitamin K, vitamin C, potassium, and manganese. You can steam broccoli, snack on them, or whip them into a yummy stirfry.
8. Brussels Sprouts
We know that Brussels sprouts have the reputation of being gross but hear us out. They’re full of compounds that help prevent cancer.
On top of their cancer-fighting ability, they contain folate, vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, potassium, and manganese. You can roast them but they work much better when eaten raw.
All you need is half a cup of asparagus to fulfill your body’s folate requirement for the day. Folate helps protect your body from diseases and can even stop tube birth defects from happening.
Asparagus can decrease inflammation and fight the free radicals that cause wrinkles. It’s good for your brain’s cognitive health too.
You can snack on asparagus raw or shave it into ribbons with a vegetable peeler. It makes a great topper for salads.
10. Bok Choy
Bok choy is a Chinese cabbage that can be eaten raw or tossed into a salad. It and other cruciferous veggies like it have the potential to protect your body against certain cancers.
Bok choy contains phosphorous, zinc, vitamin K, iron, and other vitamins and minerals that are essential to bone health. This superfood is also heart-healthy, it can regulate your blood pressure, it’s great for your skin, and it can fight against type 2 diabetes.
The Top 10 Healthiest Vegetables to Put in Your Snack Bowl
Are you craving some kind of late-night snack? Put one of these top 10 healthiest vegetables into your bowl. They fight against cancer, can keep weight off, and most of them contain your body’s daily dose of essential vitamins and minerals.
So, snack away. Your body will thank you and since it’s healthy, you won’t feel a twinge of guilt about it.
It’s better to eat a few little snacks during the day than three big meals. Check out this post for a few workday snack ideas.