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3 Fun Healthy Diet Recipes Using Dark Leafy Greens

Are you looking for healthy diet recipes to help you feel and look better? The following healthy diet recipes use veggies from the “cruciferous” vegetable family. These veggies are low in calorie, high in flavor, and full of the fiber and nutrients your body craves.

Ethiopian Collard Greens—–

This healthy diet recipe is adapted from the traditional Ethiopian dish gomen wat.

1 lb. collard greens, rinsed, trimmed and chopped

2 cups water

One to two chopped onions

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon lemon juice

A pinch of salt

1/4 cup fresh chopped garlic

1/4 cup fresh chopped ginger

1 teaspoon tumeric

1 teaspoon paprika

Add the greens and water to a pot and bring it to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, when the greens have simmered for 10 minutes, heat the olive oil over medium heat in a second large pan or pot, add the onions, and cook them for about 10 minutes or until onions are slightly brown. Stir in the garlic and cook 1 more minute. Then, add the greens and cooking water to the onions and garlic and let them simmer until the water is nearly evaporated. Add the remaining spices and cook for another 5 minutes.

Southwestern Sauerkraut (Pickled Cabbage)

This healthy diet recipe combines the health benefits of cabbage with those of vinegar, which preserves your food longer, adds flavor without adding fat or calories, and, according some evidence, increases feelings of fullness and reduces cholesterol. It also lets you leave the vegetables fairly raw, preserving nutrients that might be broken down through cooking.

This pickled cabbage can be eaten on its own as a crunchy snack, added to tacos (or taco-inspired lettuce wraps), or thrown into salads or sandwiches for added punch.

1 red cabbage, chopped into large strips or pieces

2.5 cups white vinegar

2 tablespoons ground black pepper

2 tablespoons cumin

2 tablespoons tumeric

2 tablespoons powdered garlic

2 tablespoons onion powder

2 tablespoons salt

1 tablespoon cayenne pepper

(alternatively, sub spices with 2 taco seasoning packets)

Boil a 1.5 pint pickle jar, open, along with its lid in a pot of water to sterilize it. Remove the jar with tongs, being very careful so you don’t burn yourself. Add the chopped cabbage to the pickle jar, packing it down as necessary. Bring the vinegar and spices to boil in a pot. Poor the boiling liquid into the pickle jar and fill to the brim (it is helpful to do this in the sink). Seal the lid onto the pickle jar, being sure to protect your hands from the heat as the jar will be extremely hot. Let the jar cool until the it is safe to touch, then place it in the back of your refrigerator for at least a week.

Super Easy Microwave Kale

This recipe is a great way to get all the benefits of leafy greens quickly and with little preparation. It’s a great recipe for a night home when you’re just cooking for yourself. Use just two cups of kale if you want a healthy side, or multiply the recipe by two or even three if you would like to use kale for your main dish. Also, this recipe provides recommended cheeses and spices, but feel free to experiment by adding flavors to meet your personal preferences.

2 cups kale, rinsed, trimmed and chopped

1/4 cup grated or shredded cheese (Parmesan cheese works well, or if you prefer you can use a shredded Mexian blend or four cheese blend that comes in a pouch)

1 teaspoon water

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon paprika

Salt and pepper to taste

Place the kale in a microwave safe bowl along with the water and cover the bowl with a paper towel. Microwave the kale on high heat for two minutes for every two cups of kale that you use. Remove the kale from the microwave and drain off any excess water. Then, quickly add the seasonings to the bowl and toss the kale so that it is thoroughly coated in spices. While the kale is still hot, sprinkle the cheese on top and allow the cheese to melt. Let the dish cool, then enjoy.

These three dishes are just some beginning healthy diet recipe ideas to help you start exploring the wonderful world of cruciferous vegetables. Feel free to experiment frequently with your own healthy diet recipe ideas using other cruciferous veggies such as broccoli and bok choy, and you will find yourself feeling healthier and looking great.

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