While many of you are probably looking forward to spring and summer produce, there are still plenty of wonderful vegetables that can be enjoyed during the winter months. For example, who doesn’t love a cup of homemade chicken noodle soup or potato chowder during the wintertime?
Regardless of the season, you can always find flavorful and nutritious vegetables in the grocery store. I find myself making a lot of soups and roasting a lot of vegetables during the winter months. Roasted vegetables can be flavorful, comforting, and full of good nutrition. And bonus—roasting vegetables can keep the house nice and warm!
I also prepare several one-pan meals throughout the week. One-pan meals save me a lot of time with preparation and cleanup, which is probably why I find myself making a lot of them throughout the winter. All you need to do is combine a variety of winter vegetables and a protein source like chicken or fish and roast on the same pan. You can select for a variety of winter vegetables like Brussel sprouts, beets, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, carrots, broccoli, celery, fennel, kale, onion, radishes and cauliflower. Add a dash of canola or olive oil, fresh herbs like rosemary or parsley, lemon juice, and a little salt for flavor. Then roast at high heat until the vegetables are tender.
One of my favorite vegetables in the winter is actually the humble sweet potato. I love roasting or baking sweet potatoes and serving them with brown sugar and butter. However, since I know I might not be as active during the winter, I substitute aspartame for brown sugar. It makes my sweet potato even sweeter, but without the extra calories. I believe that aspartame is safe, delicious, and can be really helpful when cutting back on added sugar when used as a sugar substitute.
Amber Pankonin MS, RD, CSP, LMNT is a registered dietitian and licensed medical nutrition therapist based in Lincoln, NE. She works as a nutrition communications consultant, freelance writer, food photographer, and adjunct professor at the University of Nebraska- Lincoln. Amber shares her love for food and nutrition at Stirlist.com, an award-winning website, focusing on healthy, easy recipes for the busy cook. Amber serves on several boards including the Nebraska Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Nutrition Entrepreneurs Dietetic Practice Group, and also cofounded a group to motivate female entrepreneurs in her town. You can follow her on Twitter @RDamber, Instagram, Pinterest, or connect with her on Facebook.