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How To Preserve Nutrition When Cooking Vegetables

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On the JJ Barnes Blog, I check out tips from Benjamin Bowers at Satia.com for how I can preserve nutrition when cooking vegetables so I can get the most out of mealtimes.

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I love cooking, and having been a vegetarian for 25 years now (Jeez… I’m old), I am always cooking vegetables. My favourite things to make are spicy tomato based sauces for curries or pastas, and I love making sure to include green vegetables with every meal. This all sounds healthy, but am I getting the most out of my cooking?

To find out, how to extract as much nutritional value as possible from each of the vegetables I cook, Satia.com expert Benjamin Bowers sent over a list of guidelines to teach me how to preserve nutrition when cooking vegetables.

How To Preserve Nutrition When Cooking Vegetables

Preparing Vegetables

Vegetables are full of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, so including them in every dish is a great way to increase your intake of nutrients. However, you might lose a portion of that dietary benefit during preparation. To avoid that, here are a few hints you can use while preparing to cook your vegetables.

Wash Prior To Chopping

The most important phase in preparing vegetables is washing them to eliminate soil and contaminants. Washing the vegetables before you begin chopping them up guarantees that the soil goes down the sink, not the nutrients.

Cut Into Bigger Pieces

Another way to keep the nutrients is to cut the food into bigger pieces. For instance, bell peppers are loaded with vitamin C, which is extremely reactive and oxidizes when it comes into contact with air. Therefore, the bigger the size of the vegetable pieces, the less air touches the vegetables’ surface and the more nutrients they contain.

Avoid Pre-Cut Vegetables

If you want to get the most nutrients out of your vegetables, buy them fresh or frozen. Pre-cut vegetables may destroyed have some nutrients gone because of how they were packaged. If you have a lot of vegetables that you can’t use before they spoil, freeze them as soon as you can to keep their nutrients.

Cooking Vegetables

At the point when you’ve chopped up your vegetabeles, cooking them in a way that preserves their nutritional value is important.

Avoid Boiling Your Vegetables in Too Much Water

Boiling vegetables in too much water can result in significant nutrient loss, including the loss of up to 50% of their vitamin C content in some vegetables. Peas, beans, and asparagus may also contain less thiamine, or vitamin B1. As a result, if you have the means, you might want to roast or steam your vegetables instead.

Make Sure To Prepare Your Vegetables As Soon As You Chop Them

To minimize nutrient loss, don’t wait long after chopping your vegetables before cooking them, as they can lose more nutrients the longer they are exposed to oxygen.

Try Not To Reheat Meals

Even though meal prepping is taking over the world, the best strategy is to always eat your meals right away. If you must reheat food, do so gently and for as little time as possible to minimize nutrient loss. Reheating food, especially in the microwave, can harm vitamins like B and C.

Maximising Nutritional Value

Despite your best efforts, you will lose some nutrients. Fortunately, there are ways to ensure that your meals contain as many nutrients as possible.

Make Vegetable Stock

With the leftover water from boiling the grains and vegetables, you can easily increase the vitamin content of your meals by making vegetable stock. The stock can be frozen and used to flavor and add nutrients to other dishes. To enhance the flavor of both your vegetables and the stock, remember to properly season the water.

Peel After Cooking

To preserve nutrients, peel root vegetables like potatoes and beets after they have been cooked in water. This allows the nutrients to migrate to the centre of the vegetable and reduces the opportunity of them getting away into the cooking water. Alternately, if you need to peel before cooking, you can fry the peelings in organic oil for a quick and nutritious snack.

Avoid High Temperatures

Lots of nutrients and minerals are sensitive to heat, such as vitamins C and B, as well as fat-solvent vitamins like A, D, E, and K. To preserve nutrients, cook food at lower temperatures and not for extended periods of time.

Try seasoning your meals with fresh herbs and vegetables to increase their vitamin and mineral content. Herbs, like a lot of green vegetables, contain a lot of vitamins A, C, and K. Adding herbs to your meals will not only make them look better, but they will also be healthier. Also, you might want to include a bowl of salad with fresh vegetables and a vinaigrette made from olive oil. This can assist you with feeling more full for longer while giving extra micronutrients and fiber.


Bowers’s conclusion is that to ensure that we get the most out of the ingredients we use to prepare our meals, it is essential to preserve as much of the food’s nutrients as possible. By following the tips above, you can massively increase the nutritional value of your food and guarantee that you are getting the food you really want.

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