7 Best Vegetables to Eat Raw

Eating these veggies uncooked is more nutritious.

Woman buying vegetables at a farmer's market.

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Eating vegetables is good for you. Veggies contain vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other plant-compounds with health benefits. But how you prepare your bounty makes a difference in how nutritional the vegetables are. Steaming is the best way to maintain the nutritional value of cooked vegetables.

Some vegetables are better for you when cooked and some when eaten raw, according to WebMD. Here are seven vegetables that pack a better nutritional punch if you eat them raw. Just make sure that you properly wash all vegetables before consuming.


While broccoli is a delicious part of any meal when cooked, it is actually healthier to eat it raw, according to The Healthy. That’s because broccoli contains high amounts of sulforaphane, an antioxidant that helps protect against cell oxidation.

A study published in the Journal Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that your body will absorb more sulforaphane from broccoli if you do not cook it.  You can enjoy raw broccoli in salads, with healthy dips like hummus, or in smoothies.

Freshly washed and cut raw broccoli.

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Raw onions are loaded with health benefits, according to The Healthy. Onions contain the flavonoid quercetin that could help protect you from cardiovascular disease and some cancers. Cooking reduces the benefits of this phytochemical.

Since onions belong to the allium family, eating garlic, chives, or scallions raw will also help you reap all the benefits of these super healthy vegetables. Enjoy raw onions on sandwiches like veggie burgers or in salads.

Chopped yellow onion.

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Red Bell Peppers

Red peppers are a great source of vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals but cooking can degrade them. Red bell peppers also contain more antioxidants than any other colored peppers and give you better protection against oxidative stress and damaging diseases. Use raw red peppers in salads, veggie platters, or just eat plain as a healthy snack.

Peppers are the market.

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Cauliflower is also a cruciferous vegetable like broccoli and is also healthier to eat raw, according to The Independent. Cauliflower is chock full of vitamin C, vitamin K, and dietary fiber. The benefits of the vitamins could be degraded by cooking. Enjoy raw cauliflower with a healthy dip like guacamole.

Raw cauliflower makes a healthy snack.

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Sugar Snap Peas

Snap peas are different from other peas because you do not have to shell them. These little gems are full of vitamins C, K, and folate and are a great source of fiber which contributes to gut health. Snap peas, like other vitamin rich foods, are most nutritious when consumed raw. Add snow peas to salads or dip in hummus for a healthy snack.

Sugar snap peas can be eaten raw.

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Baby Corn

While you may not think about eating a full-size corn cob raw, baby corn – which is harvested while not fully ripe – is easier to munch on. Baby corn is nutritionally dense and contains vitamin A, C, folate as well as potassium and fiber. In fact, the high fiber content helps support a healthy gut and helps you feel fuller longer. Add baby corn to salads, veggie platters, or eat with a healthy dip.

Baby corn that is ready to pick.

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Kale is a superfood that contains many healthy vitamins, minerals and plant compounds called glucosinolates that combined with myrosinase become an important defense against diseases. But according to a review of studies that was published in Frontiers in Nutrition, heat can inactivate myrosinase. That’s why it is healthier to eat kale raw, according to The Healthy. Add kale to salads, in a smoothie,  or eat alone with a lemon and olive oil dressing.

Healthy kale smoothie.

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