Spinach pasta with basil and feta.
Lisa M Baragiola

Powerhouse Vegetables – Part II

Powerhouse Vegetables – Part II

Welcome to powerhouse vegetables, Part II. You may view previous post here and future post here. This information is timely, because February is American Heart Month www.heart.org. I’m going to take a chance and guess some of you might only eat one of the four featured vegetables. Honestly, I have tried all of them and only eat two of the four on a consistent basis. What does this mean? Nutrition professionals get in a rut too and we need to step out of the comfort zone and be daring in the kitchen. I challenge you to try each of the four powerhouse vegetables below at least once this month.

Brussels Sprouts the “Tiny Cabbage”

Brussels sprouts are a cruciferous vegetable related to kale, cauliflower, and mustard greens. They’re high in vitamin K and fiber. Brussels sprouts are a good source of antioxidants and possess anti-inflammatory properties. This vegetable may reduce the risk of cancer, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Brussels sprouts tend to be an unpopular vegetable, especially with children. Thankfully, preparation and cooking methods have come a long way. Brussels sprouts can be shaved for salads, or my favorite is roasting them in the oven.

Kale the Curly Leaf

Kale is also a cruciferous vegetable related to Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and mustard greens. It contains vitamins K, C, manganese, and antioxidants that may help ease inflammation, protect against chronic disease, and support eye health. There was a time when kale was just a garnish, now it’s being utilized as an ingredient in salads, smoothies, omelets and more.

Green Peas in a Pod

Green peas are part of the legume family, plants that produce pods with seeds, but are consumed as a starchy vegetable. A half cup of peas contains 4 grams of both fiber and protein. Peas provide vitamins A, C, K and may help protect against heart disease and cancer. If you haven’t already, give peas a chance.

Swiss Chard a Mediterranean Favorite

Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable belonging to the same family as beets and spinach. It’s loaded with vitamins A, C, K and magnesium. Chard is a good source of fiber, with one cup providing 4 grams. It’s equally impressive to kale and may help prevent health conditions such as heart disease and lung cancer.  Top pizza crust with it, sauté or add to your favorite scrambled eggs and other recipes.

It’s Crunch Time

The challenge is on, be brave and experiment with our four green friends. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain from the health benefits provided by these vegetables. Check out our next blog for Part III. To start, try this Roasted Brussels Sprout Salad with Green Pea Green Goddess Dressing recipe.

Roasted Brussels Sprout Salad with Green Pea Green Goddess Dressing

Ken Foland, Executive Chef
This salad brings together the combined taste of all four powerhouse vegetables.
Prep Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Salad
Servings 4


  • 5 oz organic girl super greens (includes kale and chard)
  • 1 lb whole Brussels sprouts, halved
  • 1 each small red onion-sliced thin
  • 4 oz sliced almonds-unsalted and roasted
  • 12 oz can pitted green Castelvetrano olives-drained
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 oz frozen green peas-thawed
  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley-picked from stems
  • 1 bunch scallion-green parts only
  • 1/4 oz fresh dill-fronds only
  • 12 oz silken tofu-drained
  • 2 each lemons, juiced
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pinch kosher salt and cracked black pepper 


  • Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F


  •  Bring a pot of water to a boil, blanch Brussels sprouts in salted water for 1-2 minutes. 
  • Strain from water, allow to dry slightly and toss with pitted olives and olive oil.
  • Roast for 5-10 minutes until tender and lightly charred. Cool completely.
  • Thinly slice red onion- set to the side.


  •  Place remaining ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth. Adjust for seasoning.


To Serve: Toss organic super green mix with roasted vegetables, roasted almonds and onion. Toss with desired amount of dressing.

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