3 Cruciferous Veggies To Add To Your Winter Diet

Eating cruciferous veggies can help you maintain a healthy weight, thanks in part to their high fiber content. Here, tasty pairings and spices to make three varieties downright crave-worthy.
brussel sprouts, red cabbage, cauliflower

Let’s take a moment to celebrate cruciferous veggies. These mighty members of the Brassica family are rich in glucosinolates, plant chemicals with anticancer properties. Plus, eating them often may help you maintain a healthy weight, thanks in part to their high-fiber content. Here, tasty ways to serve up three varieties.

1. Cauliflower

While you might not expect great things from a veggie lacking vibrant color, cauliflower is actually rich in vitamin K, an anti-inflammatory, and antioxidants like vitamin C, beta-carotene, and quercetin, which help reduce oxidative stress to cells and support your body’s natural detoxifica-tion system.

Good For:

Low-calorie, low-carb mashes and puréed soups

Pair with:

Anchovies, pine nuts, raisins

Season with:

Cumin, curry, parsley, red pepper flakes

Cauliflower Mash:

In a large pot, boil florets from 1 head cauliflower in salted water until tender, 6–8 minutes; drain, reserving cooking water. In a blender, purée cauliflower with 2 tbsp olive oil and up to 2 tbsp reserved cooking water to achieve desired consistency. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, grated Parmesan, and dried rosemary.

See also Recipe: Vegan Creamy Cauliflower Soup With Garlic Kale Drizzle

2. Brussels Sprouts

All Brassicas contain glucosinolates, but Brussels sprouts top the list of sources. Besides lowering your cancer risk, glucos inolates may also play a role in reducing inflammation in your body, according to research.

Good For:

Baked and roasted side dishes; pasta salads and green salads

Pair with:

Almonds, celery, hard-boiled eggs, hazelnuts

Season with:

Apple cider vinegar, garlic, onions, thyme

Cheesy Bakes Brussels Sprouts:

In a bowl, toss 1 lb trimmed, quartered Brussels sprouts, 1 cup halved chestnuts, 2 tbsp olive oil, ½ tsp salt, and ½ tsp black pepper. Spread onto a baking sheet and cook at 400° until sprouts are tender, 20 minutes. Sprinkle with 2 cups grated Par-mesan; bake until cheese melts, 2 minutes.

See also Fennel-Roasted Brussels Sprouts

3. Red Cabbage

Give your meals a colorful twist and a boost of anthocyanins, powerful antioxidants that give red cabbage its bright hue. One cup also provides 16 percent of your daily fiber needs, which helps reduce blood cholesterol and keeps your gut healthy.

Good For:

Slaws, stir-fries, and nutrient-rich wraps

Pair with:

Apples, blue cheese, walnuts

Season with:

Balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, lemon juice

Red Cabbage Slaw:

In a bowl, toss 3 cups shredded red cabbage, 2 cups shredded green cabbage, 2 julienned carrots, 1 julienned red bell pepper, 2 finely sliced scallions, and ¼ cup chopped cilantro. Serve with Asian-style vinaigrette.

See also 4 Ways to Make Veggie “Noodles” in Your Spiralizer