6 Recipes That Add More Vegetables to Your Meals

Chefs and bloggers are getting phenomenally creative with vegetables. Cauliflower in particular is stealing the show these days, and for good reason — it seems there is nothing the white cruciferous beauty can’t do! It’s not alone, though. There are other great vegetables that you can swap in for bread, tortillas, and more. Whether you’re gluten-free, Paleo, or just want to eat a bit better, these recipes show you how to work more vegetables into your favorite dishes.

1. Cauliflower Tortillas

tortillas with sour cream and vegetables

Cauliflower tortillas | iStock.com

At first glance, the idea of a cauliflower tortilla seems impossible. Wouldn’t it break? Is it soggy? Aren’t they too thick? None of these things are true. These beauties from Recipe Girl get a little bit crisp but remain pliable, and they’re super flavorful with the addition of cilantro and lime. On top of that, they’re only 43 calories per tortilla. That’s about 100 calories less than a Mission flour tortilla.


  • ¾ head cauliflower
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Juice from ½ lime

Read the recipe directions at Recipe Girl

2. Mediterranean Chicken Lettuce Wrap Tacos

lettuce on a cutting board

Lettuce on a cutting board | iStock.com

If the cauliflower tortillas sound like altogether way too much work, the queen of low-carb creativity, Martha Stewart, comes in and reminds you about lettuce wraps. Don’t forget  about lettuce wraps! These are delicious little tacos without the taco shell. Try to pick a sturdy yet flexible lettuce leaf like butter lettuce. Iceberg is likely to break, and oak leaf is too thin. If you find that one leaf is too thin, double it up.


  • 12 ounces boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 4-inch-long, 1-inch-thick strips
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon coarse salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinaigrette
  • 4 romaine lettuce leaves, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced red onion
  • ¼ cup red wine vinaigrette
  • ¼ cup tzatziki
  • 12 butter lettuce leaves
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1½ ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 12 kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano

Read the recipe directions at Martha Stewart

3. Hawaiian-Style Meatloaf

meatloaf with vegetables

Meatloaf with bell peppers| iStock.com

Forget breadcrumbs — this meatloaf from Jan’s Sushi Bar uses the moistening and binding power of shredded zucchini. Jan’s house has two meatloaf mega-lovers, and they declared this the best meatloaf ever. We think it’s something about the sweet-salty-savory combination of pineapple, soy sauce, and maple barbecue sauce against ground beef that does it.



  • 2 tablespoons ghee or olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • ¼ cup yellow bell pepper, diced
  • ¼ cup red bell pepper, diced
  • ¼ cup orange bell pepper, diced
  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  • ½ cup Maple Barbecue Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon gluten-free tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon kosher sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Read the recipe directions at Jan’s Sushi Bar

4. Turkey and Mushroom Meatballs

Source: iStock

Meatballs with mushrooms | iStock.com

Mushrooms aren’t technically a vegetable, but they still stand in here for breadcrumbs all the same, so we’ll count it. The mushrooms deepen the meaty flavor of the meatballs, which are a leaner protein this time around and could use a hand in the flavor department. Elise of Simply Recipes suggests playing around with sizes: small ones for snacks or appetizers, big ones for a meal. You can serve them without sauce, with a marinara sauce, or with a soy glaze like this one from Smitten Kitchen.


  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 6 ounces of shiitake and cremini mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
  • 1 pound ground turkey meat
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Read the recipe directions at Simply Recipes

5. Broccoli-Basil Mac and Cheese

Source: iStock

Pot of boiling water ready to cook | iStock.com

This is definitely cheating, but it was too good an idea to not include; plus, it works in the spirit of the law of this article. Hailing from Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks, this mac and cheese casserole is topped not with breadcrumbs, but with broccoli! The broccoli gets toasty in the oven and replaces the classic topping of homemade mac and cheese. Heidi uses a mix of broccoli and actual breadcrumbs, but we agree with Gabriella Vigoreaux from Epicurious — it would definitely work as just broccoli.


  • 1 small butternut, acorn, or other winter squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into tiny chunks
  • Olive oil
  • 1 bunch of basil, stems removed
  • Small head of broccoli, roughly chopped
  • 4 tablespoons crème fraîche or sour cream
  • 1¾ cups grated white cheddar cheese
  • 1¾ cups grated Gruyere cheese
  • Large handful of cherry tomatoes
  • 3 cups dried macaroni elbows

Read the recipe directions at 101 Cookbooks

6. Cheesy Vegetable Quiche With Cauliflower Crust

cheesy quiche and coffee

Vegetable quiche | iStock.com

We’ve seen the influx of crustless quiches that have come with the rise in wheat- and gluten-free diets, but they just look like frittatas to us. What’s a quiche without its crust? Instead of making your quiche a turtle without its shell, make a cauliflower crust for your quiche and make it feel whole again. Fresh April Flours will show you how. It won’t be delightfully flaky like a pastry crust should be, but on the plus side, it also doesn’t have a whole stick of butter in the crust alone.



  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, stems removed
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Half of one medium-sized yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 (10-ounce) package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces shredded cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, more as needed

Read the recipe directions at Fresh April Flours