Bobby Flay's Tip For More Flavorful Veggies Is To Treat Them Like Meat

A balanced diet consists of protein, fiber, fruits, and a healthy serving of vegetables throughout the day. It's easy to center your meal around chicken, pasta, or chickpeas, but veggies are often relegated to the side, a meager, unwanted essential that people peck at while focusing their attention on meatier options. Vegetables can be delicious, but if you don't know how to properly prepare them, eating them can be an unenjoyable experience. A little salt and pepper can go a long way, and coconut milk can give vegetables a creamy update, but you don't have to limit yourself to one or two seasonings — Bobby Flay certainly doesn't.

In an interview with Bon Appétit, the chef and restaurateur said he prefers to season his vegetables similarly to meat, using a spice rub to enhance the flavor. "Rubbing spices into anything gives it a far greater flavor impact," Flay said. While Flay opts for paprika and coriander when seasoning his vegetables, you can make your own spice rub to season vegetables in a pinch.

What spices to use when seasoning vegetables

Each vegetable has its own distinct flavor that shouldn't be covered up by heavy spices. Instead, enhance the taste of your vegetables with herbs. Using dried herbs, like basil, parsley, rosemary, and thyme, complements the earthy taste of your vegetables without overpowering them.

As for when you should be seasoning vegetables, sprinkle in herbs early in the cooking process. While the heat helps the herbs to discharge their flavors earlier, powdered spices like turmeric and cumin should be added while cooking, towards the end. For whole spices — your anise, peppercorns, and cardamon — place them in the oil or water before adding in vegetables.

To ease up the process, create a base seasoning rub with salt, black pepper, and herbs to season your vegetables as soon as they hit the pan. By combining onion powder, dried basil, thyme, rosemary, and paprika together, you can cut down the cooking process and ensure that your vegetables taste good every time. Afterward, sprinkle on powdered spices depending on what you're cooking.