Eating Fresh Produce: Simple Ways to get in your Daily Vegetables

I'm starting to really love Fridays, and not just because it is the end of the week. Friday is the day that my Papa Spud's Produce Order opens online up for me to customize my produce box and meal plan for the following week. My produce is delivered every Tuesday based on my address, Every Friday afternoon (sometimes on Saturday, if I'm busy) I plan my weekly meals for the following week. I've been a Papa Spud's paying customer now since early January, and I have to honestly say it has changed my way of eating. And that's a good thing!

Farm-Fresh Produce: 5 simple ways to get in your daily veggies.

I have always loved vegetables, but never really bought them like I should have in a grocery store weekly, or at least, not like the vegetable variety I am now buying since joining Papa Spud's. Before becoming a customer, my family meals were not balanced very well with enough fresh vegetables. I also found that we ate way too much pasta because it was easy to prepare on those busy school nights. That's all changed these since I started produce home delivery.

Farm-Fresh produce: 5 simple ways to get in your daily veggies. Cucumbers make a great snack with hummus.

Now, I munch on red peppers, cucumbers, radishes, carrots, kale, cabbage and so much more during the day. I don't prepare sandwiches any longer for lunch, and instead, I may roast cabbage and toss the the cabbage with cashews. I also like to eat leftover quinoa or rice and mix it with lots of fresh veggies. For this particular lunch, I mixed in red onion, red pepper,cucumber, lentils and quinoa.

5 simple ways to get in your daily veggies. Top rice or quinoa with farm-fresh veggies.

I worked hard on a weight loss plan for January. I lost weight by eating more veggies, cutting my sugar intake, consuming less gluten (pasta, breads, beer), and by watching my portions, except I allowed myself to eat HUGE portions of vegetables. Overall, I lost about eight pounds. I'm still working to keep up my healthy eating plan even though on occasion, I work in a doughnut here or a glass of wine here. That's OK. One has to live.

I'll be sharing lots of new recipes and healthy eating ideas in the coming weeks with Papa Spud's sponsoring this new recipe content. Papa Spuds sells more than just local farm-fresh produce so I've tried a few, organic meats, too. And I'll be trying more in the coming weeks.

When I signed up I chose a medium box for my family, and basically, I've been filling that box mostly with produce.  After being a customer now for close to two months, I'm seriously thinking of going to the family box so I can order more meats weekly. Meats and cheeses are more expensive than vegetables so they do eat up more of your weekly credits based on the your box cost. The medium box costs about $25 per week, and that gives me over 20 food credits for purchase.

5 simple ways to get in your daily veggies. Roast veggies along with your main dish for an easy meal.

Through my own experience with this process, I'm learning that farm-fresh produce tastes better so I' have been doubling up on some veggies in my produce order. For instance, last week I doubled my cucumber order with Papa Spud's. Here's why. I bought a big bag of cucumbers at BJs Wholesale Club because I needed them. I eat a lot cucumbers and hummus these days for snacks. I was able to taste the farm-fresh cucumbers next to the store bought cucumbers. The difference in taste was unbelievable. The BJs cucumbers were basically tasteless next to the farm-fresh ones. I can get about two or three cucumbers for 1.50 credits at Papa Spud's. It's the same things with red peppers. I love them, but they are so expensive in the stores. I can get about three red peppers for 3.50 credits. I did another taste test with a Food Lion red pepper vs. a farm-fresh pepper. Again, I found the store pepper lacking in taste over the pepper in the produce delivery.

With Papa Spud's I try to buy and cook with what is in abundance because it is more cost-effective on the budget. They say winter is the hardest time to cook farm-to-table. I have enjoyed my selections. Papa Spud's has developed contracts with out of state farms so things do come from out of North Carolina. The red peppers are out of state at the moment. Here's just a sample of what I may order weekly using my 20 weekly credits.

Papa Spud's Produce Delivery; sample of cost. Farm-Fresh veggies delivered to your doorstep weekly.

If you purchased this same produce at Harris Teeter or Whole Foods, I bet it would be double the cost.

Papa Spud's is local so if you are reading this in Michigan then I can't help you sign up to experience what I do here in North Carolina. Sorry about that, but this is a growing trend in all cities. We are fortunate in North Carolina because we are a huge agricultural state.

But, I do have a few tips or recipes to help you eat more veggies on a daily basis.

5 simple ways to Eat more Veggies Daily

5 Simple Ways to Eat More Veggies Daily

1. Roast an assortment veggies on a pan while roasting salmon. This is such and easy and healthy meal that can be cooked at one time. 

2. Roast a medley of vegetables in a casserole dish. Use any vegetables of your choice: I used broccoli, red pepper, mushrooms, zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes, and squash. I tossed the veggies with olives, salt, pepper, and some balsamic vinegar. This can be a side dish or you can easily have it for lunch the next day to get in several good servings. 

3. Saute kale or spinach with garlic, onions, and top with northern beans for a nice hot lunch. This could also be a main meal. Can't get my husband on board with that one, though for dinner. 

4. Snack on raw veggies during the day. I do this instead of grabbing the Triscuits.

5. Make soups that include a lot of vegetables. 

Next week, I'll be sharing some of the recipes I've been using while being a Papa Spud's customer. You can also follow my Pinterest Boards to help you with meal planning. If you are in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill, and want to get produce delivery then you can use my referral link.

Disclosure: I am a paying customer of Papa Spud's. All opinions are my own. For the next four weeks during this special series, my produce boxes will be comped. I will be going back to a paying customer after those four weeks, and I'll continue to share with you great recipes. I love this service and am a happy customer. 

Linking this post up to Small Victories Sunday Link-up. 

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