Now that we are into the New Year, I’ve made it my goal to stick to a clean diet filled with lean proteins, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates, while increasing my vegetable intake. Vegetables are the one food that I tend to forget to incorporate into each meal, so I’m trying a new system of “eating my colors” to make it a point that I fill my plate with colorful vegetables for at least 2 meals per day. Eating vegetables with colors such as green, orange, yellow, and purple, will help vitamin intake, fiber, and overall nutrition. According to the USDA Choose My Plate, women ages of 19-50 should consume 2 ½ cups of vegetables per day and men ages of 19-50 3 cups of vegetables per day. These amounts vary for children and women and men over 50 as well, however the key message of “making half your plate fruits and vegetables” is the same for all ages.
Along with vegetables, I’m also making it a point to consume more healthy fats, such as coconut oil, at least 4 times per week. I’ve found that incorporating coconut oil into my diet has given me increased energy, kept me feeling fuller longer, and tremendously cut down my sugar cravings. With trying to get both vegetables and healthy fats into my diet, I decided to make orange glazed vegetables which are perfect to have with both lunch and dinner. I used sweet potatoes in this recipe for my complex carbohydrates and coconut oil for my serving of healthy fats and added flavor. Here’s what you’ll need:
Calories: 121, Fat: 2.5g, Total Carbohydrates: 36.9g, Sugars: 21.9g
- 16 oz baby carrots
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes, cut
- 1 cup dried apricots
- 1/2 cup agave
- 1/4 cup frozen orange juice, thawed
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons Kelapo Coconut Oil, melted
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Boil carrots, sweet potatoes and dried apricots in medium sauce pan until soft.
- Meanwhile, mix rest of ingredients in separate bowl until blended.
- Drain carrots, sweet potatoes and dried apricots. Return to pan, add in sauce.
- Cook on low heat for 20 minutes and serve!
You’ll find that the coconut oil compliments the apricots and vegetables perfectly. This recipe is also great for children since you have the sweetness of the sweet potatoes, orange juice, carrots, and apricots. For other meal ideas that include vegetables, even hidden ones, try our Zucchini Brownies, Vegetable Lasagna, Zucchini Bread and Spaghetti Squash Dinner. All of these recipes are ways to incorporate your serving of vegetables into a meal or dessert and also for children-they’ll never know!