A healthy 4-ingredient sauce for grown-ups who won’t eat their vegetables


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I’m still patiently awaiting the day when I get excited about vegetables. Sure, I can get down with asparagus and mushrooms. Sometimes broccoli even makes the cut. Do I get as excited about plants as I do a bowl of spaghetti? Nope. At least not yet. But a healthy sauce for vegetables might be enough to convert even the pickiest eaters—myself included.

During this week’s food-focused Well+Good Talks, Lauren Toyota—the cookbook author behind the popular blog Hot for Food—made it very clear I’m not the only full-grown adult who won’t eat her vegetables. “Even though I’m vegan, I have a hard time eating greens so I have to get them all done at once and have them in a big container,” she says. And her secret sauce to getting herself to actually eat them is literally a secret sauce.

“My favorite sauce—because I need creaminess and fat, like vegan Ranch—is to combine tahini with miso, soy sauce, or tamari for the umaminess, lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, and hot sauce. You can make as much or as little as you want and add some warm water to get it smooth, because the tahini will thicken,” she says. “I just put it all over my vegetables, then I can eat them no problem. If I have no time, that’s all I need. You can kind of live off that if you add some brown rice, pumpkin seeds, and hemp hearts.”

Toyota t says the sauce works for all kinds of vegetables. It’s magic like that. “The only way I’ll eat my vegetables is if they’re steamed or roasted. At the beginning of the week, I fill a pot with my steamer and put in kale, broccoli, and bok choy. At the same time, I also roast a tray of sweet potato, cauliflower, and cabbage. Then I have veggies for the whole week.”

Eat up!

There’s a couple other ways to get you to eat more veggies, too. One is to sprinkle Trader Joe’s umami mushroom seasoning on literally everything, and the other is to use Spanish smoked paprika to give your greens a pork-like flavor.

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