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Boiling Vegetables - Evaporating the water = saved nutrition?

post #1 of 4
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I usually never try the traditional boiling method for my broccoli or carrots because I don't want the water to sap their nutritional value. Will boiling these vegetables with minimal water until the water has evaporated allow some of the vitamins and other nutrition to soak back into the vegetables? I have tried it where I heat the vegetables for about 15 minutes on high until there is no water left in the pan. Is this high heat also greatly minimizing the nutritional value of the vegetables? I'm not expecting to get all the nutrition back. I'm just wondering how much I am losing.

post #2 of 4

OK, according to the USDA Nutrient database, here is the difference between raw and boiled broccoli based on a 140 gram edible portion (nutrient - raw value - boiled value)

  • Calories: 48 raw, 49 boiled (??gained??)
  • Protein: 3.95g raw, 3.33g boiled (0.62g lost= -15.7%)
  • Carbohydrates: 9.30g raw, 10.05g boiled (??gain??)
  • Fiber: 3.6g raw, 4.6g boiled (??gain??)
  • Total sugars: 2.38g raw, 1.95g boiled (0.43g lost = -18.1%)
  • Calcium: 66mg raw, 56mg boiled (10mg lost = -15.2% )
  • Iron: 1.02mg raw, 0.94 boiled (0.08mg lost = -7.8%)
  • Magnesium same
  • Phosphorus: 92mg raw, 94mg boiled (??gain??)
  • Potassium: 442mg raw, 410mg boiled (32mg lost = -7.2%)

 

From the above, it is easier to simply cook 10-15% more ( 170 grams raw) and forget the water. In fact, vitamins appear to concentrate rather than dilute
 

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #3 of 4

Charbroiled, you could simply buy a bamboo basket in asian shops and steam your veggies. All good elements stay in the veggies, they keep their color, they keep their taste and the cooking time is shorter than cooking them! Those bamboo baskets are so cheap and available in many sizes to fit any pot.

 

Or, if you really want to boil veggies; always start by boiling the water first, especially for green veggies, add a little salt first and then add the veggies. Adding to boiling water shortens the cooking time and keeps more vital nutricients in the veggies.

(There are some exceptions on boiling water first; like potato and celeriac which are mostly put on in cold water).

 

Also, very interesting info, Pete, thanks!

post #4 of 4

I agree that steaming is the best option.  It retains more nutritional value and color.  You don't even need a bamboo basket, there's lots of little steamer inserts that are cheap and easy to use.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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