When it is cold outside, I find a dish of warm roasted vegetables is so comforting. Vegetables are incredibly versatile and this recipe is so easy to prepare. So what’s not to love about them! Roasted vegetables are are a great addition to the table in the fall and winter months. They are a great option for vegan and vegetarian meal planning.
You can use any vegetables you like but the combination I have been working with lately includes broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, green peppers and onions. I find this combination offers a variety of flavours and textures that go well together. Using a red pepper instead of a green one would create an even more festive appearance to this dish if you are looking for a great addition to you holiday meal menus – just saying!
You can adjust the spices you use as you feel you need. If you want to keep it simple just season the vegetables with salt and pepper. Otherwise, you can use the other spices I recommend (garlic powder and chili powder) for a little extra kick and to round out the flavour.
Vegetables are nutritionally very important. Besides the different vitamins and minerals they contain which are important for the health and vitality of our bodies, vegetables are a source of fibre which is extremely important for proper functioning of the digestive track and soluble fibre may help with lowering LDL or “bad” cholesterol which may reduce the risk for heart disease.
Cooking vegetables, especially fall and winter root vegetables, is important because it makes it easier for us to eat and digest them. Roasting is a healthy cooking method which uses dry heat to cook food. The food is covered and cooked in the oven. This method helps preserve nutrients of the vegetables more than other methods like boiling. The process of roasting does much to enhance the flavours of the food in the cooking process.
Broccoli is a high-fibre, nutrient dense food making it a nutritional powerhouse! Just some of the important nutrients found in broccoli include B vitamins, folate, riboflavin, potassium, iron and vitamin C. Broccoli also provides carotenoids beta carotene and lutein. Beta carotene is converted to Vitamin A in the body. Lutein has been shown to protect vision from macular degeneration by possibly functioning as an antioxidant to protect the eyes from free-radical damaged caused by UV rays from sunlight. Cooking actually makes these caroteinoids more bioavailable so your body can process and start using them more easily!
Cauliflower provides vitamin C, folate, vitamin B6 as well as potassium. It is also low in calories and an excellent source of fibre.
Carrots offer a great source fibre, potassium, vitamin B6. Carrots appropriately contain compounds called carotenoids, which may have antioxidant properties. Beta carotene is one of these which can be found in carrots but carrots also provide alpha carotene and lutein.
Olive Oil is a source of healthy fats like mono-unsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) which have improved blood cholesterol levels. Olive oil is also a source of Vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin with powerful antioxidant properties.
This is an easy side dish to prepare and serve with any sort of entree or cooked meat. The simplicity of the recipe means that it won’t clash with anything else you are cooking. The vegetables will have a subtle but substantial presence in your meal. You can also add chopped up roasted vegetables to pasta, rice or quinoa to make a more substantial meal or add them to a salad to boost your vegetables intake. Either make them for one of these meal planning options specifically or reinvent your leftovers. You can easily double or triple this recipe which makes it great for batch cooking!