Stealth Health: Not Just for Kids

My lowest dinnertime moment as a child happened the night my older sister decided Hersey’s chocolate flavored syrup drizzled heavily over our mushy bitter brown sprouts would do the trick. Never do it, oh so much worse! After an hour on the hard bench in the eat-in kitchen, I was excused. Never again did Dad attempt Brussels sprouts.

Stealth Health

We were all kids once, if you are my age, you’d rather play Nintendo than suffer through another brussel sprout side at the dinner table. My Dad’s vegetable cookery skills were so lame, he would have never qualified for Worst Cooks in America. My lowest dinnertime moment as a child happened the night my older sister decided Hersey’s chocolate flavored syrup drizzled heavily over our mushy bitter brown sprouts would do the trick. Never do it, oh so much worse! After an hour on the hard bench in the eat-in kitchen, I was excused. Never again did Dad attempt Brussels sprouts.

As adults, we still have that bug in our ear to eat our vegetables. PSA’s also remind us, as do our doctors, and the perfect pictures in food magazines, making them look all Yum, when tonight, they just don’t sound like any fun. Here’s the deal, I am a Nutritionist and Chef, pretty cool. I know how to make healthy stuff taste good. What a concept. No really, I wish all Nutritionist and Dieticians had to take basic culinary classes. I love me some vegetables, but I also got to have something quick and warming without the fuss of prepping and building flavor, or even look at another piece of kale. Just give me a bowl of pasta and marinara sauce. But, if I slack for more than a couple days in a row, for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, I begin to feel run down...

This is where Stealth Health comes in

The concept of Stealth Health is to stealthily place vegetables were they normally would not go. A “ha, ha, I told you vegetables were yummy,” says the mom to her eight-year-old. Well sometimes, particularly in the winter months, we should do ourselves and our gut a favor and hide those nutrient dense plants in our own food.

Here’s just a handful of ideas on how to try Stealth Health this winter.


Marinara sauce, oh so many options. You can blend just about anything in, as the tomatoes will overpower most flavors. My favorite is zucchini and spinach. Also try adding a mire poix (onions, carrots, and celery) to your base. Kale or chard are great too. How to do it? For harder vegetables, sauté them first, simmer in the sauce to soften, then blend. For greens, discard the stems, add the leaves towards the end to wilt, then blend into the sauce.

Craving some cheesy alfredo sauce. Not a problem, boil cauliflower, or even better, roast it and blend into your sauce before adding the cheese.

Seasonal Squash

Winter squash are an excellent source of vitamin A and C, and a very good source of potassium, fiber, B-6, magnesium, manganese, copper, and the list goes on. Winter produce can be boring, but the possibilities of squash are endless.

During winter squash season, go for a butternut squash. It’s slightly sweet, approachable, and looks just like cheese when cubed. Roast the whole thing and use it across multiple dishes throughout the week. Blend some into macaroni and cheese sauce. To prepare simply peel, dice, toss in olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper and roast at 400 degrees till slightly golden, and it stands alone as a side. You can even chill it and add it to a salad. Ever try spaghetti squash? Roast it, scrape flesh out with a fork to separate the strands, and use it in place of spaghetti noodles. Delicata squash is awesome too! It’s sweet and creamy. Roast it, scoop out the flesh, and add to sweet bread batter in place of some of the fat and sugar.

ROASTING TIP: The standard way to roast winter squash it to cut in in half lengthwise, remove any seeds, if present, rub cut end with oil, salt and pepper, and roast cut side down on a sheet pan at 400 degrees until soft.

more veggies

Making meatloaf, mince up some carrots and mix those beta-carotene rich babies in there. They are good for the eyes and the skin.

Mashed potatoes a little heavy? Lighten them up with a 3:1 ratio of Yukon Gold potatoes to rutabaga. Both are an excellent source of vitamin C, rutabaga’s take it up a notch, as they are also high in B-6, and are a good source of vitamin A. Instead of butter, use some organic buttery spread. For seasoning, ditch the Iodized salt and use your favorite sea salt for a little boost of healthy minerals. Oh, and keep that veggie peeler in the drawer, most of the "good for you" stuff is in the peel.

Brownies anyone? Why not, replace the oil with a very ripe mashed avocado for a nutritional boost during dessert.

Try these stealthy healthy tricks once a week and make Mama proud. And if you’re a Mama or caretaker yourself, bonus points for looking after the kiddo’s too. Happy Stealthing.

Blog & recipe by Sarah Kvichak Kendrick
Nutritionist & Uncorked Chef

Chicken Primavera with Cauliflower Fettuccini Alfredo

Recipe By: Sarah Kendrick
Yields: 4 servings


  • 1 head Cauliflower, cut into even florets
  • 1 small crown Broccoli, cut into small florets
  • 12 ounces Whole Wheat Fettuccini noodles, dry
  • ¼ cup Olive oil
  • 1-pound Chicken breast, boneless, skinless, butterflied
  • ½ teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ¼-cup Breadcrumbs
  • ¾ cup Parmesan cheese, grated, divided
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh thyme, chopped fine
  • 2 Carrots, cut into half circles
  • 1 Zucchini, quartered, medium dice
  • ½ Red bell pepper, seeded, deveined and sliced very thin
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup Milk
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh lemon juice
  • Seasoning: Sea Salt & White and black pepper to taste


  1. Bring salted water to a boil in a large saucepan, add the cauliflower to the boiling water and cook till tender, scoop out, drain and place in blender and puree till smooth. Add broccoli to the same water, cook till tender, remove and set aside.
  2. Return the same water to a boil. Boil noodles to al dente, reserve ½ cup cooking liquid, drain and set aside.
  3. For the sauce, in medium saucepan, heat ½ teaspoon olive oil over medium-low heat and lightly sauté the garlic till fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the milk, puréed cauliflower, bring to a simmer. Add ½ cup grated cheese, gently whisk in till it melts and thickens. Add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, season to taste with salt and white pepper.
  4. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat, add 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Season chicken breast with salt, fresh black pepper and Italian seasoning. Sear, presentation side down, once golden brown, flip and continue cook to internal temperature of 165°F. Set aside. Add breadcrumbs to the same pan and toast till light brown, stir in ¼ cup parmesan cheese, thyme, and a pinch of salt. Remove from heat.
  5. Heat a separate large skillet over medium-high heat, lightly coat with olive oil, add carrots and zucchini and sauté till al dente, add blanched broccoli, warm and season to taste. Reduce heat to medium-low and toss in cooked pasta to warm.
  6. Using tongs, gently fold alfredo sauce into pasta mixture. Use some reserved pasta water to thin if needed.
  7. Slice cooked chicken breast against the grain.

Plating: Place a swirl of pasta on plate, along with vegetables, sprinkle with toasted breadcrumbs, fan on the chicken then garnish with red peppers. Finish with additional cheese if desired.

KNIFE SKILLS 101 - Did you know learning how to cut properly can make the difference between unevenly cooked dishes with poor flavor development and real kitchen excellence! Check out our instruction-forward knife skills class, we’ll teach you to slice, dice, brunoise, and julienne like a pro. We offer these classes once a month at Uncorked Kitchen.


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