Picky Family? Here’s How To Hide Veggies In Your Dinner Recipes

We all want to love vegetables, and some of us really do. But if you’re like me, you would rather have a Krispy Kreme glazed donut instead of a spinach and kale salad any day. 

So how do we balance our love of unhealthy foods with our need for the healthy ones? We sneak them in, of course! I went to a restaurant in Asheville, North Carolina once that was completely vegan, and the vegan meat actually tasted like meat. That was when I realized that vegetables don’t have to taste like vegetables. You can incorporate our little green nemesis into so many different dishes that even the pickiest of eaters wouldn’t notice! 

Let’s get into some recipes that will have you itching to go to the farmers market and your picky hubby and kids begging for seconds!


Bolognese Sauce with Diced Veggies or Pureed Veggies

Thanks to Celebrating Sweets for this recipe!


– 1 pound of lean ground beef
– 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
– 2 carrots, chopped
– 1 large stalk celery, chopped
– 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
– 1 small yellow onion, chopped
– 3 cloves of garlic
– 3 handfuls of spinach
– 1 tsp salt
– ¼ tsp ground black pepper
– 1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
– 2 25 oz jars marinara sauce
– 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
– 1 bay leaf
– Pinch of sugar


1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, sauté the ground beef in olive oil until it is brown. Stir it regularly with a large wooden spoon.
2. While the meat is cooking, place all of the vegetables in a food processor and puree until smooth.
3. Add the vegetable puree to the meat and cook, stirring occasionally until most of the liquid has evaporated.
4. Add salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, marinara, crushed tomatoes, bay leaf, and sugar.
5. Simmer partially covered for 30 minutes. Taste and add additional seasoning if necessary.

Berry Smoothie with Kale

Thanks to I Heart Naptime for this recipe!


– ½ cup almond milk (or real milk or orange juice)
– ½ cup plain yogurt
– 1 cup chopped kale
– ½ frozen banana
– ½ cup frozen fruits
– Ice (as needed)


1. Blend the milk and yogurt together.
2. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
3. Add ice or liquid as needed.

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread

Thanks to Two Peas & Their Pod for this recipe!


– 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
– 1 ½ tsp baking powder
– ½ tsp baking soda
– 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
– ¼ tsp nutmeg
– ¼ tsp ground ginger
– ½ tsp kosher salt
– ¾ cup packed brown sugar
– 2 large eggs (room temperature)
– ½ cup unsalted butter (melted and slightly cooled)
– 2 cups shredded zucchini
– 1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
– 1 ¼ cups chocolate chips
– 1 tbsp turbinado sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350° and grease a 9×5 loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, stir brown sugar, eggs, and melted butter together until the mixture is smooth. Add in the shredded zucchini and vanilla extract. Mix until well combined.
4. Add the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently fold in 1 cup of chocolate chips.
5. Pour the batter into the loaf pan and sprinkle the sugar and the remaining ¼ cup of chocolate chips over the top.
6. Bake until golden brown for 50 to 60 minutes.
7. Let the bread sit for at least ten minutes before cutting it.

Instant Pot Eggs Benedict

Thanks to The Foodie and The Fix for this recipe!


Instant Pot:
– 1 cup of sliced cauliflower
– 1 cup water
– Olive oil cooking spray
– Egg mold
– 2 large eggs

– 1 egg yolk
– 2 tsp lemon juice
– ⅛ tsp salt
– ⅛ tsp white pepper
– 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and hot
– All of the hot, cooked cauliflower drained from the Instant Pot.

– 1 whole wheat English muffin, split and toasted
– 4 slices of low-sodium, fat-free ham
– Chopped chives or green onions for garnish (this is optional)


1. In the Instant Pot, spray two cups in your egg cup mold with the cooking spray and set aside.
2. Put your sliced cauliflower in the bottom (you can use your cauliflower stems in this case!) and cover with water. Put your trivet on top, followed by your egg mold, cups, or ramekins.
3. Crack an egg into a small bowl and put it carefully into the mold. Do the same with the second egg.
4. Cover with your Instant Pot lid and set to manual for 2 minutes. You might have to go to 3 minutes if your eggs still look a little watery.
5. While your eggs are cooking use a small food processor or blend the egg yolk, lemon juice, salt, and white pepper. Blend for 20-30 seconds.
6. When your Instant Pot is done, remove your trivet from the pot and set aside.
7. Drain the cooked cauliflower and that and hot melted butter to your food processor or blender. Process until smooth, thick, and creamy.
8. For each serving, put ½ of the toasted English muffin on a plate, top with 2 slices of ham, and then 1 of the poached eggs. Top with 3 tablespoons of Hollandaise on each serving. If you want, you can also add the garnish!

Hidden Cauliflower Taco Meat

Thanks to Confessions of a Fit Foodie for this recipe!


– 1 pound of ground meat of your choice (most often used is lean ground beef)
– 3 cups of cauliflower rice
– 1 cup of low sodium tomato sauce
– 1-2 tbsp of salt free taco seasoning
– ½ tsp of salt
– 1-2 tbsp of water (if needed)
– Whatever taco toppings you love!


On a stovetop:
– Brown the meat until just cooked through. Add the cauliflower rice. Sauté for a few minutes until the cauliflower is tender. Stir in the tomato sauce and taco seasonings.
– Simmer for 5 minutes, adding in water if the mixture is too thick.
– Serve with your favorite taco toppings!

In an Instant Pot
– Brown the meat until it is almost cooked through, then stir in the cauliflower rice, sauce, and taco seasonings.
– Add ¼ cup of water and lock the lid, setting for 1 minute manual pressure.
– If it still needs thickening after it is cooked, sauté it for a few minutes until the water evaporates.
– Serve with your favorite taco toppings!

Italian Stuffed Peppers

Thanks to Confessions of a Fit Foodie for this recipe!


– 4 large green bell peppers — tops, ribs, and seeds removed
– 1 pound of extra lean grass fed ground beef
– 2 cups of tomato sauce (bonus points if there is no sugar added)
– 2 garlic cloves, minced
– ½ onion, chopped
– 2 cups of shredded zucchini or zucchini noodles
– 1 ⅓ cups of shredded Italian cheese blend
– Fresh basil
– Salt and pepper to taste


– Preheat oven to 350°.
– Wash the peppers and dry them.
– In a large skillet, brown the ground beef with the onions until the meat is cooked through. Add garlic and cook for another minute.
– Add in the zucchini, 1 cup of tomato sauce, and ⅔ cup of shredded cheese. Simmer for 2-3 minutes on medium-low heat. Taste filling and add salt and pepper as desired.
– Spray a square baking dish with olive oil cooking spray and set the peppers upright. Fill them with the meat and veggie mixture and top each with the remaining tomato sauce. If you have tomato sauce leftover, you can also put some in the bottom of the tray.
– Cover tightly with foil and bake for an hour.
– After an hour, uncover the peppers and top with the remaining cheese. Bake for 5-10 more minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Enjoy!


What recipe are you going to try first? Do you have any other sneakily healthy recipes? Comment below!

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