Your mother was right: Eating your veggies — especially cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower — is good for your health.
For one of the biggest boosts to healthy eating, increase the amount of fruit and veggies in your diet. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends filling half of your plate with vegetables and fruit.
Cruciferous vegetables, named because they have cross-shaped flowers, contain protective compounds such as carotenoids, folate and vitamins C, E and K. Cauliflower, which Mark Twain called “a cabbage with a college education,” is a cruciferous star, high in dietary fiber and low in calories.
Roasting is an ideal cooking method for vegetables, as it naturally caramelizes their sugars and brings out their inherent sweetness.
Most people think of roasting root vegetables — roasted carrots or sweet potatoes, anyone? — but think beyond the root. Cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and even kale become more delicious if they’re roasted.
Use these guidelines to help you roast veggies like a pro:
- Heat the oven and make sure it’s nice and toasty — around 400°F to 425°F — before you put the veggies in.
- Spritz the vegetables with olive oil spray or toss with oil, then season and roast.
- Don’t crowd the pan. Make sure there’s a little space between the veggies, so they caramelize instead of steam.