•Vegetables come in many shapes, sizes and flavours.
They are among the best sources of nutrition for almost
•Vegetables are the edible parts of a plant, they can be
from many different parts of the plant.
•Vegetables come from around the world and are
available all year. But, if we buy locally grown
vegetables, in season, it helps support local food
producers and reduces the food miles that the products
travel. In season, the price of vegetables is usually
lower and the vegetables are fresher.
•Our consumption of vegetables is the lowest in Europe.
• Vegetables are low in fat (except avocado
•Vegetables are good sources of dietary fibre
•Yellow, red and orange vegetables supply the
antioxidant pigment betacarotene, which is a
form of vitamin A
•Antioxidant vitamins A, C and E protect against
diseases such as cancer.
Aubergine, Tomato, Avocado, Pepper
Pods & Seeds
Peas, Beans, Lentils, Okra
Leafy greens & Brassicas
Stalks & Shoots
Asparagus, Celery, Bean sprouts
Oyster and Button mushroom, Truffle
Onion, Garlic, Leek
Roots & Tubers
Beetroot, Carrot, Parsnip, Potato, Yam
Courgette, Cucumber, Butternut squash
Buying & Storing
When buying vegetables you should consider the
•Is the packaging damaged and within the sell-by date?
•Are the vegetables bruised or damaged?
•Are the vegetables firm to touch (depending on the
•Organic vegetables often contain more flavour and less
•Fresh fruit and vegetables should be used as soon as
possible. If stored, they should be kept in a cool, dark
place, in a fridge or larder to prevent sprouting, mould
growth and rotting.
• Many vegetables can be eaten raw.
• Wash to remove any dirt, and peel if necessary.
Peel thinly as nutrients are stored just beneath
• Steaming is a nutritious way to cook vegetables
because the nutrients are not lost in the cooking
• Boil green vegetables in a little boiling water for
a short time and use the cooking water for sauce
• Don’t cook any vegetables for too long as
nutrients will be lost.
• Freezing: Frozen peas are often better quality than fresh
peas as they are picked and immediately frozen. Few
nutrients are lost in freezing.
• Canning: Fruit & vegetables are canned, heated and
sealed at high temperatures, which softens them. Some
vitamin C is lost in canning.
• Drying: Moisture is removed during drying so that the
food cannot deteriorate. EG: Sultanas, prunes and
• Jams & Chutneys: Fruit is boiled with plenty of sugar to
make jam, and vegetables are cooked in vinegar and
sugar to make chutney. These products are generally
high in sugar.
1. Why are vegetables important for a healthy
2. How can you prepare and cook vegetables
3. Make a list of the nine vegetable groups and
add the following to its correct group:
Lettuce, lentils, okra, aubergine, turnips,
purple sprouting broccoli, carrots, peas,
courgettes, button mushrooms, leeks,
watercress, tomatoes, cassava, avocado
Which vegetables are in season in the UK at the
Research on the internet, ask people who grow
vegetables, or visit a supermarket and look at
Fill in a chart such as below, to show when the
different vegetables are in season.
JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC