Nutritious Canned Vegetables


I don’t really care what anyone eats. I agree with Greek philosopher, Epictetus:  “Preach not to others what they should eat, but eat as becomes you, and be silent.”

Good philosophy there.

However, there does sometimes seem to be a bias against canned and frozen vegetables Vs fresh vegetables these days.

I have written about the nutritional value of fresh Vs canned and frozen vegetables before. As I have said before, all things being equal, many times frozen or canned vegetables have just as many nutrients, if not more, as fresh vegetables. There are studies that confirm this.

However, and as reported at Science Digest, now there is a new study out that indicates:

…………. that when price, waste and preparation time are considered, canned foods almost always offered a more affordable, convenient way to get needed-nutrients. [Emphasis mine.]

I started More Thyme Than Dough with the express purpose of helping people find inexpensive, delicious, and healthy food and recipes during the Great Recession. That is still the main goal of this blog. So I feel a duty and responsibility to share this kid of information with my readers.

I do not know of too many Food Banks or Food Kitchens that have fresh vegetables available 24/7. Canned goods are often the only vegetables available to folks who must rely on Food Banks to feed their family.

I do not believe we should add guilt to the burden of folks who must rely on Food Banks to feed their family for not eating fresh vegetables too. Especially since people who choose or have to eat canned vegetables are not losing any nutrients.

 Dr. Cathy Kapica, PhD, RD, and adjunct professor of nutrition at Tufts University, and one of the study administrators said:

With economic concerns at the forefront today, households are challenged to meet dietary recommendations within budgetary constraints,” notes Kapica. “This research should assure families they are getting needed nutrition regardless of whether they choose canned, fresh, frozen or dried varieties. They can be confident in buying those foods that best meet their budgets, schedules, cooking abilities and taste preferences and still obtain important nutrients.”  [Emphasis mine.]

Some people will no likely denigrate the findings of this study since it was commissioned by the Canned Food Alliance. However, there are enough other studies that have produced similar findings to negate that criticism. And as we know from my post, Losing Nutrients, it does not take much time for fresh vegetables to begin losing nutrients anyway.

Below are the key findings of this new study as regards two of the vegetables studies; tomatoes and corn:

Tomatoes — It is nearly 60 percent more expensive to obtain dietary fiber from fresh tomatoes as from the same portion of canned tomatoes. Not only is the price of canned tomatoes lower than fresh for the same serving size, but fresh tomatoes take longer to prepare, adding to the real cost of fresh.

Corn — When looking at purchase price alone, fresh corn is less expensive than canned or frozen. However, when the cost of waste (most notably the cob) is factored in, as well as time to prepare, canned corn offers the same amount of dietary fiber as fresh at a 25 percent savings. [Emphasis mine.]

You can read more about this study and it’s findings at Science Digest: Obtaining Key Nutrients.

The key thing to take away from this study is that it makes little difference if you eat fresh, canned, or even frozen vegetables. You can rest assured that you and your family will get needed nutrients from your food at a cost you can afford.

Isn’t the United States of America just grand!

Featured Recipe    Creamed Corn with Green Onions and Bacon

This is as good a time as ever to share this recipe with you. It is fast and easy. This recipe and dish is definitely not haute cuisine. It is however, a perfect side dish for a Both Parents Work Kids Have Soccer Practice Busy Week Night Dinner. And it uses canned cream style corn.

All I am doing today is showing you how you can dress up canned vegetables by adding a few extra goodies.

This is what you will need for 4 people:

2 cans cream style corn

1-2 tablespoons butter

3-4 green onions

4-5 slices bacon

Salt and pepper to taste

Here is what you do:

Using a skillet or a microwave oven cook the bacon crisp.

Wash, cut off roots and slice the green onions.

Open the cans and pour contents into a pan. Add the butter and salt and pepper if using any. Heat the corn till the butter is melted and the corn is heated through.

Crumble the crisp bacon.

Place the corn in a serving bowl and top with the sliced green onions and the crumbled bacon.

I served with a thin pork chop and a salad. The entire meal took about 30 minutes to make.

Bon appétit!!!


2 cans cream style corn       $2.50

1-2 tablespoons butter         $0.16

3-4 green onions                 $0.44

4-5 slices bacon                  $1.40

Salt and pepper to taste

Total cost = $4.50
Cost per person = $1.13

Ka Ching another delicious Recession Buster Recipe©

Quote of the Day

If you are what you eat, then I’m fast, cheap and easy.



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5 comments to Nutritious Canned Vegetables

  • I used to be “all fresh all the time,” and then I found that often I was either making vegetable stock or cooking rather tired vegetables rather than tossing them out. So if I know I’m going to cook something today, I’ll buy fresh every time. If I’m buying it because I haven’t made any menus and have no freakin idea what I’m going to cook (too often) I’ll buy frozen. I buy canned corn but John doesn’t like it much so I use it IN recipes rather than on its own.

    Good post. I think it’s important to occasionally reconsider why we have made the choices we have and maybe change is in order. It was for me.

    • Roberta

      I know what you mean about having “tired” vegetables in the fridge. I am single too. So tired vegetables is a huge problem for me. These days I tend to buy fresh the day berfore or day I will be using them. I also buy in very small quantities when I can, for instance 1 carrot only.

      The best thing about this study is that it gives people options. I like options. Especially when cost is an issue for so many these days.

  • I love creamed corn! It’s a childhood fave of mines. You can even make a creamed corn soup with it! I think your side dish is very delicious and easy to make! Thanks for posting!

    • Roberta

      A childhood favotite of mine too. Yes, the dish is very easy. Just open some cans. As usual it is the bacon that makes this special. And the ease for working moms and dads. Thanks, Nicholas.

  • […] Remember too, that canned (and frozen) foods are sometimes more nutritious than the more expensive fresh vegetables and fruits. I dealt with this topic in some depth in Nutritious Canned Vegetables. […]