NEW YORK — What’s your favorite vegetable? If you said broccoli, you’ve got good company! According to a new study, broccoli and carrots reign as the supreme vegetables throughout the country (70% and 69%, respectively), with spinach (55%) rounding out the top three vegetables Americans are most likely to eat.
Four in 10 Americans think being a picky eater is holding them back from trying new foods, especially vegetables. The recent survey of 2,122 Americans reveals that 38 percent won’t try a new veggie just because they’re too picky and 16 percent claim they don’t know how to cook other veggies outside their comfort zone. Only 30 percent feel confident that they eat a balanced diet most of the time, with one in four (26%) admitting that they only eat healthy once in a while.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Bolthouse Farms, the study explores the motivators behind people’s cooking habits, as well as Americans’ relationship with vegetables, revealing the most popular produce in the kitchen.
When it comes to vegetables, people really are creatures of habit — 62 percent always buy the same veggies when shopping for produce. The most popular veggies bought each week include potatoes (61%), lettuce (61%), onions (55%), and carrots (53%).
“It’s great to see Americans investing in their health by finding different ways to incorporate vegetables into their diets,” says Adam Hellstern, Sr. Director of Agricultural Strategy & Marketing at Bolthouse Farms, in a statement. “Vegetables are so important to Americans, especially carrots – especially with 21 percent of respondents putting trust in carrots as the first solid food they fed to their baby.”
While homestyle and hearty dishes are often regarded as comfort food, the survey suggests vegetables provide some level of comfort, as well. Two in three respondents who like veggies feel relaxed or peaceful after eating them.
The carrot is king of the dipping tray
Carrots topped the list of veggies respondents would be most likely to include in a veggie tray (74%), followed by broccoli (65%) and celery (62%).
Carrots (34%) also join celery (33%) as the most dippable vegetables. More millennials said they’d pick up a carrot for dipping (38%), compared to those over the age of 57 (27%). Over half the poll would give select vegetables a second chance if they learned how to cook them properly (52%) or if they learned more about their health benefits (42%).
“Change from the usual can be good, especially for the 57 percent of Americans that said they’ve eaten a vegetable that tasted better than they expected. Trying new foods as part of a balanced diet can break Americans ‘picky habits,’ and eating vegetables comes with a variety of great benefits,” Hellstern says. “Americans’ relationship with food is focused on healthy eating plus great taste, and carrots bring both to the table, supporting everything from digestion to immunity to bone health.”