SINCE YOU CAN REMEMBER, YOU’VE BEEN TOLD TO EAT YOUR VEGETABLES. YET, DESPITE HAVING THIS SIMPLE CONCEPT OF “VEGETABLES EQUAL HEALTHY” INGRAINED IN YOUR MIND SINCE YOU WERE A TODDLER, IT’S STILL A DIFFICULT TASK TO ACCOMPLISH. FORTUNATELY, I HAVE THREE SUREFIRE WAYS TO HELP YOU SNEAK THEM IN!

No vegetables. No Dessert.

At least that’s how it was in my house (love you mom and dad!)

And of course, I was as rebellious as they came when vegetables were placed on my plate. I tried every trick in the book to get out of eating them. I’d scatter them around on my plate to make it appear as if I’d given the “college try.”

I’d “accidently” drop them so that I had an excuse not to eat them. “They’re covered in dog hair, mom!”

I even once went as far as taking a bite of broccoli, chewing it, and then asking to be excused to go the bathroom. I proceeded to spit the broccoli out in the bathroom and came back acting as if nothing happened…

I’m pretty sure my little brother – yes, you David – ratted me out on this one. Or, I was just a terrible liar. Probably a combination of both.

Had my parents and I known of the strategies I am about to share with you regarding how to sneak vegetables in to my day, I probably would have enjoyed quite a few more evening “treats” (as I used to call them) after dinner.

Allow me to spare you the hassle of fretting over vegetables and arguing with your kids. Here are three surefire ways to sneak vegetables in your day to help you (and your kids) eat more!

#1: SCRAMBLE THEM

If you have vegetables for breakfast you’re already starting your day better than 99.5 percent of others. Seriously, you’re downright awesome if you have vegetables for breakfast. And an easy way to start your day like this is to scramble them into your morning eggs.

Stuff your favorite turkey and cheese omelet with sautéed peppers and onions, and reap the innumerable health benefits they provide. Or, consider scrambling spinach and broccoli into your morning plate of eggs. A little salt, garlic, and cheese and there’s no way these healthful foods will overpower the cheesy heart goodness of your breakfast.

#2 BLEND THEM

To help add some vegetable variety to your new and improved morning routine, consider tossing some greens into your morning smoothie. Yes, your smoothie will no longer be the usual crème, brown, or blue, but instead, a green-ish hue. It may or may not look appetizing, but it will taste just as good as yesterday’s and provide even more healthful benefits.

I recommend tossing in spinach as it has the mildest taste (in my opinion) compared to kale, Bok choy, or Swiss chard. I start each day with a smoothie that contains whey and casein protein, Greek yogurt, and spinach!

#3 HIDE THEM

Okay, if you’re the one preparing this meal, you’re not going to fool yourself. But let me tell you that if you try sneaking veggies on to a sandwich, it’s unlikely you’ll taste them. That is, of course, assuming you know how to build a sandwich*.

On a serious note, throw a few greens or slices of cucumber or tomato between two slices of a hearty bread and a pile of your favorite protein. Top is with a creamy slice of cheese, salt, and pepper, and voila, a protein-packed, delicious-tasting, veggie-filled sandwich that provides the taste of gains, not greens!

*I have “Sandwich Expert” on my resume because of three years working at Subway Restaurant.