I never thought I’d be one of those moms that sneaks vegetables into prepared foods. But, I totally do. I will be honest and fess up to not being madly in love with most vegetables. By that, I mean that sitting down to crunch on vegetables – fresh/raw or cooked – is not my most favorite thing. Yes, I like vegetables (a lot, in fact!) but I don’t think they taste better than prepared foods with vegetables.
There’s some exceptions. I do really like salad, potatoes, brussels sprouts, beets, corn, and carrots to name a few…but something like cabbage, cucumber, and onion? I prefer them in something or seasoned/flavored in some way.
Am I making any sense at all?
I guess what I’m getting at is that I love meals that have it all. Fajitas for example – meat and vegetable with seasoning. Or a casserole where you have your balance of vegetable, protein, and starch mixed all together. I’m sure none of this comes as a surprise to you if you read my blog and know what kind of recipes I gravitate towards. Vegetables are usually served in something as a part of the main dish, not alongside an entrée.
Pasta or noodles is a great blank slate for a meal. You can add or subtract basically anything and everything and it generally works and works well. Pasta and noodles are also a hit with everyone in my house, particularly the toddler.
I actually made this meal with Shea in mind. Noodles with a flavorful sauce and vegetables? Perfect. Because similar to her mommy (that’d be me), Shea doesn’t LOVE noshing on vegetables. Of course I’ll show up to daycare and she’ll be happily enjoying the baby carrots of a “friend” but when I send them the next day they show up untouched back in her lunch bag at the end of the day. Same goes for bell pepper, cucumber, and sometimes even avocado.
So, I’ve taken to adding carrots and kale or spinach to our smoothies in the morning and adding kale to breakfast muffins. I’ve also looked to dishes like this where the vegetables are served with noodles and a sauce that packs big flavor punch.
Except, Shea didn’t like this dish when I was 100% certain she would. BONK. Kids, man. It was all good though. Hubby and I were happy to devour the leftovers – we absolutely loved the salty and tart sauce with the crunch of the vegetables. Delicious! Shea’s loss!
- 8 oz dry rice noodles
- ⅓ cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 Tbsp rice vinegar
- juice of 1 lime
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups matchstick-cut carrots
- 2 cups purple cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 english cucumber, seeds removed and chopped
- 4 green onions, chopped
- ½ cup cilantro, roughly chopped
- Cook rice noodles according to package instructions.
- In a large bowl, combine soy sauce, rice vinegar, lime juice, honey, sesame oil, and minced garlic; whisk to combine.
- Add prepared noodles to the soy sauce mixture and toss to coat. Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes to absorb flavors, toss every few minutes.
- Add all remaining ingredients and toss well. Serve at room temperature or chilled.