Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Spruced Up Spaghetti

Ok, so this isn't really a recipe, more of a tip to add nutrition to store bought food.  For some strange reason, my kids will not eat spaghetti when I make it with delicious, homemade sauce.  They are weird, I know!  Alas, I must buy store bought spaghetti sauce.  While not completely void of nutrition, it's not packed full of the good stuff that I put in homemade sauce and it just doesn't have the bright flavors.
  1. Add some chopped, FRESH parsley!  Use Italian flat-leaf if you want a strong parsley flavor or use curly if you want mild.  This will really perk up the flavor of the sauce.
  2. Add some fresh, chopped spinach!  Packed full of nutrition and it looks like parsley to the kids!  If you don't like the taste of spinach, I promise you will not taste it!
  3. Stir in a few tablespoons of carrot puree!  I love adding carrot puree to any of my red sauces.  It blends in nicely!
  4. Sprinkle in a little milled flaxseed.  Since the sauce is dark, it is not noticeable but gives you a punch of heart healthy omega-3's and fiber!
  5. Try whole grain or whole wheat pasta!  You will probably have to "wean" your family onto these ... the difference is slightly noticeable with whole grain and very noticeable with whole wheat.  If you want to give it a shot, try mixing it half regular pasta and half whole grain.
You can carry these ideas over to MANY recipes!  I add fresh parsley and spinach to almost everything I cook!  As far as pureed vegetables, pick a veggie that is similar in color to the food that you are cooking and try it out!  If you are unsure, try just a tablespoon to start and "taste test" it as you cook!  You will be surprised how much nutrition you can add to your meals!  Another thing that I have found works with my family when I want to add extra veggies, finely dice them into tiny pieces. 

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