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Green Vegetables You Need To Know

Green Vegetables – Learn all about the best green powerhouse vegetables, including health benefits, uses, and storage tips. Plus, you’ll find plenty of recipes to include these green veggies into your diet!

green vegetables graphic.

Green vegetables are an essential and vibrant part of a well-balanced diet, offering a wealth of nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber to support overall health and well-being.

These verdant gems come in many shapes and forms, from leafy greens like spinach and kale to cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and Brussels sprouts.

In the kitchen, green vegetables offer versatility, allowing for an endless array of preparation methods, including raw or cooked, in salads, stir-fries, soups, smoothies, and more.

Their distinctive flavors and textures can elevate any dish, making them an essential component of a balanced, whole-food diet.

Storing green vegetables properly is key for preserving freshness, taste, and nutrition. We’ll cover that to help you keep your green vegetables fresh as possible.

So let’s dive into the world of green vegetables and all their glory! πŸ’š

Kale

Kale, a member of the Brassica family alongside collard greens, cabbage, and broccoli, has earned its reputation as a superfood due to its outstanding nutritional profile. This dark, leafy green comes in several varieties, such as curly, dinosaur (Lacinato), and Red Russian, each with its unique texture and taste. Kales’s versatility and health benefits make it a worthy addition to any diet.

Nutritional Benefits

There are 34 calories, 2.6g of fiber, and 2.5g of protein in 1 cup of raw kale. Some of the key nutrients found in this leafy green vegetable include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Kale is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Calcium and Iron: Like collard greens, kale provides a good amount of both calcium and iron, which are vital for maintaining strong bones and transporting oxygen in the blood, respectively.
  • Fiber: Rich in dietary fiber, kale can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Kale is abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Kale can be prepared in a wide range of preparation methods. Here are ways to add this powerhouse green vegetable to your diet:

  • Raw: Massaging raw kale with a bit of oil or dressing can tenderize the leaves, making them perfect for salads or wraps.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking kale in a hot pan with a small amount of oil enhances its flavor and texture, while still retaining its nutrients. Try our Savory Sauteed Kale.
  • Steaming: Gently cooking kale using steam softens its texture and preserves its vibrant color and nutrients.
  • Baking: Transforming kale into crispy chips by baking it in the oven is a popular and healthy alternative to traditional snack foods. We recommend our Crispy Baked Kale Chips recipe.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating kale into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.

Storage Tips

To store kale, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, wrapped in damp paper towels and placed in a plastic bag. Properly stored kale can last up to a week.

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts, a member of the cruciferous vegetable family alongside broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower, are small, nutrient-rich powerhouses that offer a variety of health benefits. With their miniature cabbage-like appearance and vibrant green color, Brussels sprouts are colorful, versatile, and delicious.

Nutritional Benefits

In one cup of Brussels sprouts, there are 38 calories, 3.3g of fiber, and 3.4g of protein. Some of the key benefits found in this green vegetable include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Brussels sprouts are an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Brussels sprouts provide a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, Brussels sprouts can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Brussels sprouts are abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Sulforaphane: Like other cruciferous vegetables, Brussels sprouts contain sulforaphane, a natural compound linked to potential cancer-fighting properties and other health benefits.

Culinary Uses

To add these nutrient-rich mini cabbages to your diet, try these different methods of preparing Brussels sprouts:

  • Roasting: Roasting Brussels sprouts in the oven enhances their natural flavors and creates a delicious caramelized, crispy texture. Try our Crispy Roasted Brussels Sprouts or Roasted Nourish Bowl using this method.
  • Steaming: Gently cooking Brussels sprouts using steam preserves their nutrients and results in a tender texture.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking Brussels sprouts in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and slightly crunchy result.
  • Adding to salads: Incorporating raw or cooked Brussels sprouts into salads adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating Brussels sprouts into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.

Storage Tips

To store Brussels sprouts, keep them unwashed in the refrigerator and placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored Brussels sprouts can last up to a week or two.

Green Peas

Green peas, also known as garden peas, are a small but mighty delicious and nutritious legume that offers a multitude of health benefits. Their sweet flavor and vibrant green make them a flavorful and appealing addition to your plate.

Nutritional Benefits

Green peas contain 117 calories, 8.8g of fiber, and 8.6 g of protein per cup. Some of the key nutrients found in these nutrient-filled green vegetables include (read more at WebMD):

  • Protein: Green peas are a good source of plant-based protein, which is essential for building and repairing body tissues, producing enzymes and hormones, and supporting overall health.
  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Green peas provide these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Green peas are rich in folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, green peas can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Green peas are abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Green peas are small but mighty, adding lots of nutrition to even the simplest meal. Include these green vegetables in your meal rotation with any of these preparation methods:

  • Raw: Enjoy raw green peas as a crunchy snack, or add them to salads for a burst of nutrition and fresh flavor. We love them raw in this Vegan Macaroni Salad.
  • Steaming or Boiling: Gently cooking green peas using steam or boiling water preserves their nutrients and results in a tender texture. Try this Vegan Mac + Cheese with Peas using the boiling method.
  • Stir-frying: Quickly cooking green peas in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and slightly crunchy result. We recommend this Kimchi Fried ‘Rice’ that uses stir-frying.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating green peas into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.
  • Mashing: Mashing cooked green peas creates a tasty and nutritious side dish or a base for dips and spreads.

Storage Tips

To store fresh green peas, keep them in the refrigerator, placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored green peas can last up to a week. Frozen green peas can be stored in the freezer for several months.

Spinach

Spinach is a popular leafy green vegetable related to beets, chard, and quinoa. It’s a nutrient superstar with numerous health benefits. With its tender leaves and mild, slightly sweet flavor, spinach is a colorful and nutritious addition to any diet.

Nutritional Benefits

In one cup of raw spinach, there are 7 calories, .66g of fiber, and .86g of protein. Some of the key nutrients spinach contains include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Spinach is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Iron: Spinach provides a good amount of iron, which is vital for transporting oxygen in the blood and maintaining overall energy levels.
  • Calcium: Spinach contains calcium, which is crucial for maintaining strong bones and teeth and supporting nerve and muscle function.
  • Folate: Spinach is rich in folate, which is essential for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, spinach can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Spinach is abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Spinach should be a part of your balanced diet. Here are common preparation methods for this versatile green vegetable:

  • Raw: Enjoy raw spinach leaves in salads, sandwiches, and wraps for a burst of nutrition and fresh flavor. Try this fresh Strawberry Spinach Salad.
  • Steaming: Gently cooking spinach using steam preserves its nutrients and results in a tender texture.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking spinach in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and tender result.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating spinach into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.
  • Smoothies: Blending spinach into smoothies is a great way to sneak in extra nutrients without altering the taste of your favorite beverages. We love this Fresh Green Hemp Smoothie.

Storage Tips

To store spinach, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, wrapped in damp paper towels, and placed in a plastic bag. Properly stored spinach can last up to a week.

Broccoli

Broccoli, a member of the cruciferous vegetable family, along with cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. It is a member of the Brassica family and is native to the Mediterranean region. With its distinct tree-like appearance and vibrant green color, this nutrient-dense vegetable is as appealing as it is delicious!

Nutritional Benefits

In one cup of raw broccoli, there are 31 calories, 2.2g of fiber, and 2.3g of protein. Some of the key nutrients found in this green vegetable include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Broccoli is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Broccoli provides a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis and cell division, making it especially important for pregnant women and those in periods of growth.
  • Fiber: Rich in dietary fiber, broccoli can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Broccoli is abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Sulforaphane: This natural compound found in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables has been linked to potential cancer-fighting properties and other health benefits.

Culinary Uses

By adding broccoli to your meal rotation, you can enjoy its unique flavor, texture, and extensive health benefits. Here are some ways to prepare this green vegetable:

  • Raw: Enjoy raw broccoli florets as a crunchy snack or add them to salads for a burst of nutrition and texture.
  • Steaming: Gently cooking broccoli using steam preserves its nutrients and results in a tender texture and bright green color.
  • Roasting: Roasting broccoli in the oven enhances its natural flavors and creates a delightful caramelized, crispy texture.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking broccoli in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and slightly crunchy result.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating broccoli into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.

Storage Tips

To store broccoli, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored broccoli can last up to a week.

Collard Greens

Collard greens, a popular leafy green vegetable in Southern cuisine, are a nutrient-rich addition to your diet, providing an array of essential vitamins and minerals. These large, dark green leaves are part of the Brassica family, which also includes kale, cabbage, and broccoli. Hearty in texture and slightly bitter taste, collard greens are delicious and versatile.

Nutritional Benefits

Collard greens contain 33 calories, 4.8g of fiber, and 4.3g of protein per cup. Some of the key nutrients found in collard greens include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Collard greens are an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Calcium and
  • Iron: Collard greens provide a good amount of both calcium and iron, which are crucial for maintaining strong bones and transporting oxygen in the blood, respectively.
  • Fiber: Rich in dietary fiber, collard greens can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Like other leafy greens, collard greens are high in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Get to know collard greens by adding them to your meal rotation with any of these cooking methods:

  • Braising: Slowly cooking collard greens with a small amount of liquid (such as vegetable broth) over low heat until tender. This is the traditional Southern-style preparation, often flavored with onions and garlic.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking collard greens in a hot pan with a small amount of oil, allowing them to retain their vibrant color and slightly crunchy texture. Try our quick and easy Vegan Collard Greens!
  • Steaming: Gently cooking collard greens using steam, preserving their nutrients and creating a tender, yet firm texture.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating collard greens into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal.

Storage Tips

To keep collard greens fresh, store them unwashed in the refrigerator, wrapped in damp paper towels and placed in a plastic bag. They can last up to a week when stored properly.

Micro Greens

Microgreens are the young, tender shoots of various edible plants, typically harvested within 1 – 2 weeks of germination. They are typically less than 2 inches tall and have a delicate flavor and texture. They have become increasingly popular due to their delicate appearance, intense flavor, and exceptional nutritional value. Microgreens can add a burst of color, taste, and nutrition to a wide variety of dishes.

Nutritional Benefits

There are 41 calories, 3.6g of fiber, and 2.5g of protein in one cup of micro greens. Some of the key nutrients found in these little green vegetables include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Microgreens are excellent sources of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Vitamin E: Many microgreens are rich in vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant and supports immune function.
  • Folate: Microgreens can provide a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: Microgreens contain dietary fiber, which can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Microgreens are abundant in various antioxidants, such as polyphenols and carotenoids, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Microgreens can be used in a variety of ways in the kitchen, adding color, flavor, and nutrition to your meals:

  • Salads: Microgreens make a tasty and visually appealing addition to salads, either on their own or mixed with other greens.
  • Sandwiches and wraps: Use microgreens as a nutritious and flavorful filling in sandwiches, wraps, or tacos. Try these healthy Raw Zucchini Wraps!
  • Garnishes: Sprinkle microgreens on top of soups, stews, curries, or grain bowls to add a burst of color and flavor.
  • Smoothies and juices: Blend microgreens into your favorite smoothie or juice recipes for an extra dose of nutrients.
  • Omelets and frittatas: Incorporate microgreens into omelets, frittatas, or quiches for a pop of color, taste, and nutrition.

Growing Your Own Microgreens

Microgreens can be easily grown at home, providing you with a continuous supply of fresh, nutrient-dense greens. Simply purchase microgreen seeds of your choice, such as radish, kale, arugula, or beet greens, and plant them in a shallow tray with well-draining soil. Place the tray in a sunny spot, and keep the soil moist. Within a week or two, you’ll have your own microgreens ready to harvest.

Storage Tips

To store microgreens, gently rinse them in cold water and dry them thoroughly using a salad spinner or by laying them on a clean kitchen towel. Place the dried microgreens in a sealed plastic bag or container lined with a paper towel to absorb any excess moisture. Properly stored microgreens can last up to a week in the refrigerator.

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Green Bell Pepper

Green bell peppers, a type of sweet pepper, are a colorful and nutritious addition to a variety of dishes. These green vegetables, with their crisp texture, mild flavor, and vibrant green hue, not only add visual appeal but also offer numerous health benefits.

Nutritional Benefits

In one cup of raw green bell pepper, there are 30 calories, 2.5g of fiber, and 1.3g of protein. Some of the key nutrients found in green bell peppers include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamin C: Green bell peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C, which supports immune function, skin health, and aids in the absorption of iron from plant-based sources.
  • Vitamins A and E: Green bell peppers provide a good amount of vitamins A and E, which support vision, skin health, and protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Folate: Green bell peppers contain folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, green bell peppers can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Green bell peppers are abundant in antioxidants, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Green bell peppers are easily accessible and offer versatility in the kitchen, allowing for a wide range of preparation methods:

  • Raw: Enjoy raw green bell peppers in salads, sandwiches, and wraps, or as a crunchy snack with your favorite dip. We love them in this Vegan Pasta Salad.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking green bell peppers in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and tender result, perfect for fajitas, stir-fries, and other dishes.
  • Roasting: Roasting green bell peppers in the oven enhances their natural flavors and creates a delightful caramelized texture, ideal for stuffing or adding to pasta dishes and casseroles. Try this tex-mex inspired Quinoa Stuffed Peppers recipe!
  • Grilling: Grilling green bell peppers brings out their natural sweetness and adds a smoky flavor, making them a delicious addition to grilled vegetable skewers or salads.
  • Adding to soups and stews: Incorporating green bell peppers into soups, stews, and one-pot dishes adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal. We recommend this Vegan Goulash (American-Style).

Storage Tips

To store green bell peppers, keep them unwashed in the refrigerator, placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored green bell peppers can last up to a week or two.

Zucchini

Zucchini, a type of summer squash, is a delicious and nutritious green vegetable that offers a multitude of health benefits. Tender in texture, mild in flavor, and vibrant green color, zucchini is an easily accessible ingredient that adds appeal and versatility to your meals.

Nutritional Benefits

Along with being low in fat, just 1 cup of raw zucchini contains 19 calories, 1.2g of fiber, and 1.5g of protein. Some of the key nutrients of this green vegetable include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A and C: Zucchini is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, and skin health.
  • Potassium: Zucchini provides a good amount of potassium, which is crucial for maintaining proper fluid balance, nerve function, and muscle function.
  • Folate: Zucchini contains folate, which is essential for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, zucchini can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Zucchini is abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Add zucchini to your meal rotation using any of these preparation methods:

  • Raw: Enjoy raw zucchini in salads, spiralized as a low-carb alternative to pasta, or as a crunchy snack with your favorite dip. We also heart these Raw Zucchini Wraps!
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking zucchini in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and tender result, perfect for stir-fries, fajitas, and other dishes.
  • Roasting: Roasting zucchini in the oven enhances its natural flavors and creates a delightful caramelized texture, ideal for adding to pasta dishes, casseroles, or as a side dish.
  • Grilling: Grilling zucchini brings out its natural sweetness and adds a smoky flavor, making it a delicious addition to grilled vegetable skewers or salads.
  • Baking: Incorporate zucchini into baked goods like zucchini bread, muffins, or cakes for added moisture and a boost of nutrients.

Storage Tips

To store zucchini, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored zucchini can last up to a week.

Asparagus

Asparagus is a delicious and nutritious green vegetable that offers a multitude of health benefits. Asparagus spears are typically green, but they can also be white or purple. With its elegant appearance, tender texture, and distinctive flavor, asparagus is visually appealing, versatile, and delicious.

Nutritional Benefits

Low in fat and calories, one cup of asparagus contains 27 calories, 2.8g of fiber, and 2.9g of protein. Some of the key nutrients found in asparagus include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Asparagus is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Asparagus provides a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, asparagus can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Asparagus is abundant in antioxidants, such as glutathione, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Inulin: Asparagus contains inulin, a type of prebiotic fiber that supports healthy gut bacteria and promotes digestive health.

Culinary Uses

Adding asparagus to your meal rotation is easy with its versatility in the kitchen, allowing for a wide range of preparation methods:

  • Steaming: Gently cooking asparagus using steam preserves its nutrients and results in a tender texture.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking asparagus in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and tender result, perfect for stir-fries or as a side dish.
  • Roasting: Roasting asparagus in the oven enhances its natural flavors and creates a delightful caramelized texture, ideal for serving alongside your favorite proteins or in salads. We recommend this fan-favorite Herbed Potato, Asparagus, & Sheet Pan Dinner!
  • Grilling: Grilling asparagus brings out its natural sweetness and adds a smoky flavor, making it a delicious addition to grilled vegetable dishes or salads.
  • Blanched: Briefly boiling asparagus and then plunging it into ice water creates a vibrant green color and slightly tender texture, perfect for salads or crudité platters.

Storage Tips

To store asparagus, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, wrapped in a damp paper towel, and placed in a plastic bag. Alternatively, you can store asparagus upright in a glass or jar with an inch of water at the bottom. Properly stored asparagus can last up to a week.

Bok Choy

Bok choy, also known as pak choi or Chinese cabbage, is a leafy green vegetable commonly used in Asian cuisine that is related to cabbage, kale, and Brussels sprouts. With its tender texture, mild, slightly sweet flavor, and crisp, juicy stems, bok choy is versatile and adds visual appeal to your plate.

Nutritional Benefits

There are 9 calories, .07g of fiber, and 1.1g of protein in one cup of raw, shredded bok choy. Here are some of the key nutrients found in bok choy include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Bok choy is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Bok choy provides a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Calcium: Bok choy contains calcium, which is essential for strong bones and teeth, and proper muscle function.
  • Iron: Bok choy is a good source of plant-based iron, which is essential for oxygen transportation and energy production in the body.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, bok choy can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Bok choy is abundant in various antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Bok choy, the Asian green vegetable, can be prepared in a variety of ways:

  • Steaming: Gently cooking bok choy using steam preserves its nutrients and results in a tender texture. We recommend this technique for our Bok Choy & Wild Mushroom Soba Noodle Soup!
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking bok choy in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and tender result, perfect for stir-fries, side dishes, or as a base for other ingredients.
  • Roasting: Roasting bok choy in the oven enhances its natural flavors and creates a delightful caramelized texture, ideal for serving alongside your favorite proteins or in salads.
  • Braising: Slowly cooking bok choy in a flavorful liquid until tender is a great way to infuse it with flavor and create a comforting dish.
  • Raw: Enjoy raw bok choy in salads or as a crunchy snack with your favorite dip.

Storage Tips

To store bok choy, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored bok choy can last up to a week.

Edamame

Edamame, or young green soybeans, are immature soybeans that are harvested when they are still green and have not yet hardened. This protein-packed green vegetable, with their mildly sweet, slightly nutty flavor and firm, yet tender texture, can be enjoyed on their own or as an addition to salads, stir-fries, and grain bowls.

Nutritional Benefits

There are about 188 calories, 8.4g of fiber, and 18g of protein in one cup of edamame. Some of the key nutrients found in edamame include (read more at WebMD):

  • Protein: Edamame is an excellent source of plant-based protein, containing all nine essential amino acids. This makes it a complete protein and an ideal choice for vegetarians, vegans, or those looking to reduce their intake of animal protein.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, edamame can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Vitamins and minerals: Edamame is a good source of essential vitamins and minerals, such as folate, vitamin K, manganese, and magnesium. These nutrients support various bodily functions, including brain function, bone health, and energy production.
  • Isoflavones: Soybeans, including edamame, contain isoflavones, which are plant compounds that may offer health benefits such as reducing the risk of heart disease, promoting bone health, and easing menopausal symptoms. Isoflavones also exhibit antioxidant properties, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.

Culinary Uses

Edamame can be used in a variety of ways in the kitchen, adding flavor, texture, and nutrition to your meals:

  • Snacks: Boil or steam edamame in their pods and season with salt or your favorite spices for a healthy, protein-rich snack.
  • Salads: Add shelled edamame to salads for a boost of protein and a pop of color.
  • Stir-fries: Incorporate edamame into stir-fries for added texture, flavor, and nutrition.
  • Grain bowls: Top your favorite grain bowl with edamame for a satisfying, protein-packed meal.
  • Dips and spreads: Blend edamame with tahini, lemon juice, garlic, and seasonings to create a delicious, protein-rich dip or spread similar to hummus.

Storage Tips

To store fresh edamame, keep it in the refrigerator in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored fresh edamame can last up to a week. Alternatively, you can purchase frozen edamame, which can be stored in the freezer for several months.

Green Beans

Green beans, also known as string beans or snap beans, are a popular green vegetable enjoyed around the world. Known for their tender texture and mild, sweet flavor, green beans offer numerous health benefits and are a delicious addition to a healthy balanced diet.

Nutritional Benefits

Green beans contain 31 calories, 2.7g of fiber, and 1.8g of protein per cup. Some of the key nutrients found in these green vegetables include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Green beans are an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Green beans provide a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, green beans can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Green beans are abundant in various antioxidants, such as vitamin C, beta-carotene, and other phytonutrients, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Minerals: Green beans contain important minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, and iron, which play key roles in bone health, muscle and nerve function, blood pressure regulation, and oxygen transport.

Culinary Uses

Green beans are a versatile ingredient and can be prepared in a variety of ways:

  • Steamed or boiled: Enjoy green beans steamed or boiled, then seasoned with a bit of salt, pepper, and butter for a simple side dish.
  • Sautéed or stir-fried: Sauté or stir-fry green beans with garlic, onions, and your choice of protein for a delicious, nutrient-dense meal. We recommend this Kimchi Fried Rice!
  • Salads: Add cooked or blanched green beans to salads for added texture, flavor, and nutrition.
  • Soups: Add them to soups and stews for additional texture, color, and flavor.
  • Casseroles: Incorporate green beans into casseroles, such as the classic green bean casserole, for a hearty and comforting dish.
  • Pickled: Preserve green beans by pickling them for a tangy, crunchy snack or garnish.

Storage Tips

To store green beans, place the unwashed beans in a plastic bag or airtight container and store them in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator, where they can last up to a week. It’s best to wash green beans just before using them to maintain their freshness and avoid spoilage.

Cabbage

Cabbage, a leafy red, white, or green vegetable, is a member of the Brassica family, which also includes vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. With its crisp texture, mild flavor, and numerous health benefits, cabbage can be enjoyed raw or cooked.

Nutritional Benefits

Low in fat and calories, in one cup of raw cabbage, there are 22 calories, 0.1g of fat, 2.2g of fiber, and 1.1g of protein. Some of the key nutrients found in cabbage include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins C and K: Cabbage is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Cabbage provides a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, cabbage can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Cabbage is abundant in various antioxidants, such as vitamin C, polyphenols, and sulfur compounds, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Anti-inflammatory properties: Cabbage contains anti-inflammatory compounds that may help reduce inflammation in the body.

Culinary Uses

Cabbage is a versatile green vegetable that can be prepared using a variety of methods:

  • Salads and slaws: Shred cabbage and mix it with other vegetables, fruits, or herbs to create refreshing salads or coleslaw. We recommend our Vegan Coleslaw!
  • Stir-fries: Add chopped cabbage to stir-fries for added texture, flavor, and nutrition.
  • Soups and stews: Incorporate cabbage into soups or stews for a hearty, nutrient-dense meal. We love our Vegetable Cabbage Soup which is healthy and delicious.
  • Wraps: Use large cabbage leaves as a low-carb alternative to wraps or tortillas for a healthy, gluten-free option.
  • Roasting: Roast cabbage wedges in the oven with a drizzle of oil and your favorite seasonings for a delicious side dish.
  • Fermented foods: Cabbage can be fermented to make probiotic-rich foods like sauerkraut or kimchi, which promote gut health.

Storage Tips

To store cabbage, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, placed in a plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored cabbage can last up to several weeks, depending on the variety and freshness.

Okra

Okra, also known as ladies’ fingers, is a unique and nutritious green vegetable native to Africa. With its slender, elongated shape, tender texture, and mild, slightly sweet flavor, okra is not only visually appealing, but it’s a nutritious and versatile ingredient to meals.

Nutritional Benefits

There are 33 calories, 3.2g of fiber, and 1.9g of protein in 1 cup of raw okra. Some of the key nutrients found in okra include (read more at WebMD):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Okra is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Okra provides a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber (3.2 g), okra can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight. Additionally, okra contains a unique soluble fiber called mucilage, which can help with digestion and regulate blood sugar levels.
  • Antioxidants: Okra is abundant in antioxidants, such as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Calcium and magnesium: Okra contains calcium and magnesium, which are essential for strong bones and teeth, and proper muscle function.

Culinary Uses

Okra’s versatility in the kitchen allows for a wide range of preparation methods:

  • Steaming: Gently cooking okra using steam preserves its nutrients and results in a tender texture, with minimal mucilage production.
  • Sautéing: Quickly cooking okra in a hot pan with a small amount of oil delivers a flavorful and tender result, perfect for stir-fries, side dishes, or adding to stews.
  • Roasting: Roasting okra in the oven enhances its natural flavors and creates a delightful caramelized texture, with reduced mucilage.
  • Grilling: Grilling okra brings out its natural sweetness and adds a smoky flavor, making it a delicious addition to grilled vegetable dishes or salads.
  • Stewing: Incorporating okra into stews, soups, or gumbo adds nutrition, flavor, and texture to your meal. The mucilage in okra acts as a natural thickener for these dishes.

Storage Tips

To store okra, keep it unwashed in the refrigerator, placed in a paper or plastic bag with small holes for ventilation. Properly stored okra can last up to a week.

Celery

Celery, a popular green vegetable with a distinctive crisp texture and refreshing taste, is often used as a low-calorie snack or as an ingredient in various dishes. With its high water content and abundance of vitamins and minerals, celery offers numerous health benefits along with being low in fat and calories.

Nutritional Benefits

In one cup of raw celery, there are 16 calories, 1.6g of fiber, 0.2g of fat, and 0.7g of protein. Here are some of the key nutrients found in celery include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Celery is a good source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Celery provides a fair amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, celery can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Celery is abundant in various antioxidants, such as vitamin C, flavonoids, and other phytonutrients, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Electrolytes: Celery contains essential electrolytes, such as potassium and sodium, which help maintain the balance of fluids in the body and support proper muscle and nerve function.

Culinary Uses

Celery is an affordable staple ingredient that can be prepared in a wide range of ways. Here are some of the common preparation methods for this green vegetable:

  • Snacks: Enjoy raw celery sticks on their own or with your favorite dips, such as hummus, peanut butter, or yogurt-based dressings.
  • Salads: Chop celery and mix it with other vegetables, fruits, or proteins to create refreshing and crunchy salads.
  • Soups and stews: Incorporate chopped celery into soups, stews, or chowders for added texture and flavor. We love it in this Creamy Celery Soup and Vegan Corn Chowder.
  • Stir-fries: Add sliced celery to stir-fries for a satisfying crunch and a boost of nutrition.
  • Juices and smoothies: Blend celery into juices or smoothies for a refreshing and nutrient-dense beverage.

Storage Tips

To store celery, wrap it in a damp paper towel and place it in a plastic bag or airtight container. Store it in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator, where it can last up to several weeks.

Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi, a lesser-known member of the Brassica family, which also includes vegetables like cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower, is a unique and versatile green vegetable. It’s mildly sweet, with a slightly nutty flavor and crunchy texture, and can be enjoyed both raw and cooked.

Nutritional Benefits

In one cup of kohlrabi, there are 36 calories, 4.9g of fiber, and 2 grams of protein. Some of the key nutrients found in kohlrabi include (read more at Healthline):

  • Vitamins A, C, and K: Kohlrabi is an excellent source of these essential vitamins, which support immune function, vision, skin health, blood clotting, and bone health.
  • Folate: Kohlrabi provides a good amount of folate, which is crucial for DNA synthesis, cell division, and proper brain function.
  • Fiber: High in dietary fiber, kohlrabi can aid digestion, support heart health, and help maintain a healthy weight.
  • Antioxidants: Kohlrabi is abundant in various antioxidants, such as vitamin C, glucosinolates, and other phytonutrients, which protect the body from cellular damage caused by free radicals.
  • Potassium: Kohlrabi contains potassium, an essential electrolyte that supports proper muscle and nerve function, as well as blood pressure regulation.

Culinary Uses

Kohlrabi’s versatility in the kitchen allows for a variety of preparation methods:

  • Snacks: Enjoy raw kohlrabi slices or sticks on their own or with your favorite dips, such as hummus or yogurt-based dressings.
  • Salads: Dice or julienne kohlrabi and mix it with other vegetables, fruits, or proteins to create crunchy and refreshing salads.
  • Stir-fries: Add chopped kohlrabi to stir-fries for added texture, flavor, and nutrition.
  • Roasting: Cut kohlrabi into wedges or cubes, toss them with oil and your favorite seasonings, and roast them in the oven for a delicious side dish.
  • Soups and stews: Incorporate kohlrabi into soups or stews for a hearty, nutrient-dense meal.
  • Mashed or puréed: Boil or steam kohlrabi until tender, then mash or purée it with a little butter or olive oil, and seasonings for a tasty alternative to mashed potatoes.

Storage Tips

To store kohlrabi, remove the leaves and store them separately in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. The bulbs should also be stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator, where they can last up to several weeks.

green vegetables graphic.
vegetable graphic.

FAQs

Yes, green vegetables contain protein, although the amounts vary depending on the specific vegetable. Green vegetables, such as green peas, contain a hefty 8.6g of protein per cup, while zucchini only contains 1.5g.

Green vegetables include a variety of nutritious and different-shaped vegetables, from round, oblong, tree-shaped, and leafy, here are some of the most common green vegetables.

  • Kale
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Broccoli
  • Zucchini
  • Spinach
  • Green Bell Pepper
  • Kohlrabi
  • Celery
  • Cabbage
  • Bok Choy
  • Artichoke
  • Edamame
  • Micro Greens
  • Green beans
  • Green Peas
  • Asparagus
  • Okra

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