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The Basics of Broccoli: nutrition, buying and preparing

Broccoli is a cruciferous vegetable, part of the same family that includes cabbage, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower.

Broccoli is packed with antioxidants and essential nutrients like vitamins C and A, iron, folic acid and calcium.

Loaded with fiber, broccoli is a tremendous fiber source that includes half insoluble fiber and half soluble fiber.

Choosing the Best

Green broccoli is most commonly found, but it’s also available in purple.

Available year round, peak season is between October and April.

Green broccoli is best when the color is a deep green and the buds are tightly closed. Avoid any green broccoli that has begun to flower.

Purple broccoli is best when it’s young, with stalks no bigger than 1 centimeter in diameter. Avoid any heads of broccoli that is limp or includes yellowing flowerets. The stalks should be crisp and snap cleanly when broken

Measuring: One pound of fresh broccoli equals about 2 cups chopped (stems and flowers)

Serving size: 1 cup of fresh chopped broccoli contains: Calories: 31 | Dietary Fiber: 2g | Protein:3g | Vitamin A: 11% DV | Vitamin C: 135% DV | Vitamin K: 116% DV | Folate: 14% DV

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