Simply replace your cooking oil with water or salt free vegetable broth. You are welcome to use other liquids too, but these are the most common replacements for when sautéing vegetables.
Because vegetables naturally have a lot of water that will release during the cooking process, you will only need to add a small amount of water or broth. Make sure to keep an eye on the pan so your vegetables don't stick. Possibly keep a glass of extra water or broth nearby in case it is needed!
The best method for sautéing vegetables without oil is to heat your skillet/pot with a couple tablespoons of water or broth at the bottom. Once the water or broth starts to crackle, add the vegetables and keep moving the vegetables around until they soften.
Similar to sautéing vegetables without oil, you can also roast vegetables without the use of oil. You will need to use high heat and cook the vegetables long enough for them to caramelize on the outside.
One quick and easy way to roast all vegetables at the same temperature is to use a large 13- by 9-inch glass baking dish. (You can adjust the dish size based on the amount of vegetables you will be cooking.)
Prep all of your vegetables, taking into account their density. (For example, asparagus does not necessarily need to be cut up, while carrots will need to be cut into chunks.) Once you have cut your vegetables, place them in a bowl with 1 cup of vegetable broth. Toss the vegetables until they are all coated, adding more broth if needed. Pour out any extra vegetable broth. Place the coated veggies in your baking dish. You are welcome to add fresh and dried herbs to your vegetables for additional flavor!
- Pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees
- Place prepped veggies into your baking dish of choice
- Cook veggies, uncovered for 10 minutes
- Remove the veggies from the oven and stir them around.
- Place the vegetables back in the oven for an additional 10 minutes.
- Remove the vegetables from the oven and slightly cover the vegetables with additional broth or water. (Just slightly moistening them)
- Cook the remaining 10 minutes, uncovered
Another great way to enjoy whole vegetables is to grill them! You can grill just about any vegetables including cucumbers! Yes, you read that correctly, cucumbers!
Just like when prepping vegetables for roasting, be mindful of their density. Cucumbers and squash will grill faster than carrots or peppers.
You can virtually steam any type of vegetable that you would like, but some will turn out better than others! As mentioned before, they will all cook at different rates so be mindful of this when cooking.
There are a few different ways to steam your vegetables:
- Steamer. Or, if you have a colander that is heat resistant or a pan that fits this description that will not touch the bottom of the pot with water boiling, this can be used as well! You will also need a lid to put over the top.
- Microwave. You will need a dish that is microwave-safe and some plastic wrap.
- Pan and Water. You will need a pan with a matching lid. Add a small amount of water to the vegetables and let the steam do the work. (This isn't the most ideal method as you will lose some nutrients in the water.)