Cramming In The Goodness

by tinareale on March 27, 2013

Fruits and veggies. We know we need them. We know they provide essential vitamins, minerals, and other important nutrients. We know they can fill us with fiber and antioxidants at the same time. They’re good stuff. Vital stuff. We can’t deny their place in a healthy diet.

I honestly love most all fruits and veggies. Minus asparagus. Fitness competition prep killed that one for me. Besides that odd veggie out, I can’t think of a one I don’t like. Liking my produce doesn’t necessarily mean it’s easier to fit into my daily eats. That comes with finding a variety of ways to include those tasty greens, flavorful fruits, and fiber-filled loves.

One of the main ways I pile in the produce is through large salads.

Greek Feta Salad
Greek Feta Salad

At least 4 to 5 times a week I have a mouth-watering salad for either lunch or dinner. I try not to go with your typical “house” side salad you may find at a restaurant, though. I want to amp up the flavor to make my salad more palatable. I include a wide variety of produce, then add in some fun extras like nuts, cheeses, hummus (so good!), beans, veggie burgers, or some other protein source.  Don’t think fruit doesn’t work in a salad either. It does! Berries and oranges are a fave of mine. I end up with CUPS of produce in a filling, healthy meal.

Sometimes a salad just doesn’t sound too appealing and I want something heartier. Enter soup. You can load so many vegetables into soup so easily. And it’s always delicious. One of my favorite veggie filled recipes is Courtney’s Crockpot Veggie Stew.

What about sneaking produce into other things for that extra oomph of nutrition? I don’t like HIDING things from my kids, but I still use the “grate or puree” trick. It doesn’t hurt to add a bit extra to other meals by either grating some vegetables (carrot sticks, zucchini, squash, and even eggplant) or pureeing fruits or veggies (strawberries, butternut squash, sweet potato, or applesauce are some I have used). I then add these to sauces, baked goods, or even right into recipes like my Veggie Filled Sloppy Joes.

Veggie Filled Sloppy Joes

Beyond all of those, the tried and true method I use most of all? On a daily basis? Smoothies! One of my all time favorite (and most delicious!) ways to get in more produce. So many things can blend right in, it’s amazing! I guess that’s why I’m such a fan of Naked Juice.

I remember the first time I tried Naked Juice – on a beach vacation when a friend brought out a bottle of purple stuff and said it was the best stuff ever. I read the ingredients and kind of freaked out. Beets? Sweet potato? Carrots? Chickpeas??? In a smoothie/juice?! Then I tried it and was forever sold.

Naked Juice

Obviously by the fact I couldn’t hold off on breaking into these babies after getting home from the store.

I tried more flavors over the years and all satisfied. And all blew my mind with the number of good things they could fit into each bottle. Two of my all time favorites are the Mighty Mango and Strawberry Banana flavors. You can’t go wrong with classic Strawberry Banana and I’m just a sucker for anything mango.

Naked Juice

Mighty Mango boasts 1 1/4 mangoes, 1/2 orange, 1 3/4 apples, 1/3 banana, and a hint of lemon in its 15 ounce size. In other words, loaded with Vitamins A and C. Each sip is like a tropical burst.

Then, the Strawberry Banana with 22 strawberries crammed in a single bottle. It tastes just like you would expect a strawberry banana smoothie to taste. Smooth, slightly creamy, and fresh.

I love Naked Juice on it’s own for a satisfying refreshment, but I wanted to take it a step further and use it as an excellent post workout recovery drink by adding a little protein. And while I was at it, why  not some vegetable goodness too?

First up, freeze the Naked Juice into ice cubes. I did half and half so I could have options. Then, I used those ice cubes and some almond milk as the base for a supremely delightful drink.

IMGP5382

  • 4 frozen cubes of Mighty Mango Naked Juice
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/2 cup frozen mango chunks
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I use Vega brand – even more veggie power!)
  • 2 large handfuls raw spinach leaves

Blend, blend, blend.

Mango perfection! I can’t wait to use this technique with the Strawberry Banana!!!! Hmmm? What should I add to it? Any recommendations?

How do you get in ample produce? Ever tried Naked Juice? What’s your fave flavor? Also check out the awesome things they are doing in the community below!

nj_logo_200x100

Naked Juice is worth its weight in good! There’s a pound of fruit in every bottle. Naked Juice has partnered with charity Wholesome Wave to improve access to fresh produce in communities across the country.You can help by visiting www.nakedjuice.com/gooddeeds. For every coupon downloaded, 1 LB of fresh produce will go to an underserved community, up to 100,000 pounds.

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Naked Juice via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Naked Juice.

Additional information may be found in my Disclosure Policy.

{ 18 comments }

1 Courtney @ Sweet Tooth, Sweet Life March 27, 2013 at 10:31 am

Thanks for the shout out, friend! And I am LOVING the look and sound of that Naked Juice smoothie – YUM!!!

2 Meghan @ After the Ivy League March 27, 2013 at 11:01 am

So the kid-friendly veggie packed meal options are really appealing to me! As a full grown adult who still doesn’t like veggies all that much, I love hiding them in foods..the sloppy joes look delicious, I’m gonna have to check them out!

3 Haley @ The Saucy Apple March 27, 2013 at 11:27 am

Okay, so I love you Naked idea. This is beyond brilliant. :)

4 Kaitlin @4loveofcarrots March 27, 2013 at 11:39 am

I love your ice cube tray trick! I love naked juice, I just picked up the green juice today!

5 Tina March 28, 2013 at 6:56 am

Let me know if you try it with the ice cube trick. It really thickens up my smoothies!

6 Ari @ Ari's Menu March 27, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Whenever I am trying to really focus on my eating, focusing my meals around veggies is the thing that ALWAYS works for me. I feel like I get to eat so much food! Love all of your ideas on ways to add it in!

7 Alexis March 27, 2013 at 12:18 pm

That salad look yummy!

8 Adrienne @ Happy Ramblings March 27, 2013 at 12:45 pm

Love Naked juice, and the ice cube tray trick!! Along with packing lots of veggies in to my meals, I also get in a ton of extra veggie nutrition by taking Juice Plus. It’s a whole food nutrition supplement made from fruits and veggies. It’s great for getting extra veggie nutrition to kids too, and kids (4-18) can take it for free!

9 Tina March 28, 2013 at 6:56 am

Hmmm??? Free? That definitely caught my attention!

10 Adrienne @ Happy Ramblings March 28, 2013 at 7:21 pm

Yes FREE, as long as you are taking it you can get a childs supply for free. There has been a ton of research done on it showing how much kids and adults benefit from taking it. I have been taking it for a year and I have seen a ton of health benefits from it. Here’s some online resources for you, let me know if you have any other questions. I can even send you some samples.

agravesjuicplus.com
childrenshealthstudy.com
http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/family-nutrition/juice-plus%C2%AE

11 jobo March 27, 2013 at 1:22 pm

LOVE me some huge salads loaded with yummies! lately I am a kabocha addict!! my salads feature them and roasted veggies galore. SO GOOD :)

12 Tara | Treble in the Kitchen March 27, 2013 at 3:00 pm

Those smoothies looked sooo creamy! Freezing the juice as cubes is a great idea that I am definitely going to try :)

13 Melissa March 27, 2013 at 3:16 pm

This is a great idea! I love the Green Machine smoothie, but I want to try other flavors.

14 Tina March 28, 2013 at 6:57 am

The mango is definitely a fave! Pretty sure they have a Mango Veggie option too. :)

15 Jill @ a Girl in Progress March 27, 2013 at 5:53 pm

These are some great tips for adding more produce into our daily diet. I have a tough time getting all my veggie servings in a day unless I have a huge salad for lunch – and that is normally what I do! I like doing smoothies as well – I usually make one on Sundays – just grab every healthy thing in the kitchen and throw it in the blender. Haven’t had a bad one yet! Great way to get rid of that last little bit of spinach, yogurt or super-ripe banana before they go bad.

16 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat March 27, 2013 at 6:46 pm

I’m definitely a huge fan of the monster salads and eat one at least once a day! Aside from that, I’ll usually have either a green smoothie or green juice with breakfast, and snack on fruit throughout the day. I’ve never tried Naked Juice because I tend to find store-bought juices a little too sweet, but the flavours sound tasty!

17 Laura @ Mommy Run Fast March 27, 2013 at 9:53 pm

Mmm, I don’t buy Naked Juice very often, but I love it. Great idea for a smoothie! We’ve been relying on those more and more often these days too, especially as my daughter has gotten pickier in the last few months.

18 Kelly @ Laughter, Strength, and Food March 27, 2013 at 10:22 pm

I love Naked juice! The cubes are such a great idea! :)

Previous post:

Next post: