Does Pickles Count as a Vegetable?
Pickles have been around and eaten for centuries, and remain a staple accompaniment to a variety of dishes. But the age-old question remains, do pickles count as a vegetable?
What is a Vegetable?
Generally speaking, a vegetable is a type of edible plant or part of a plant. Plants typically used as vegetables include but are not limited to:
- Leafy Greens (lettuce, spinach, kale)
- Bud Vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower)
- Root Vegetables (carrots, radishes, sweet potatoes)
- Pods (beans, peas, lentils)
- Tubers (potatoes)
- Bulb Vegetables (onion, garlic)
So, What Counts as a Pickle?
Pickles are basically cucumbers that have been preserved in vinegar or brine. Therefore, pickles technically count as vegetables. However, the pickle undergoes an acidic fermentation process, which can make it a less nutritional option than a plain cucumber.
Are Pickles Healthy?
When it comes to health benefits, plain cucumbers are certainly the healthier option. Pickles may contain a variety of unhealthy additives and preservatives. However, low-sodium pickles can still provide some health benefits. They are an excellent source of antioxidants, vitamin K, and probiotics. Additionally, pickles are low in calories and can help satisfy your appetite and keep you feeling full.
While it’s true that pickles count as a vegetable, it’s important to be mindful of the ingredients in your pickles and to focus on adding more nutritious vegetables to your diet. Pickles can still be an occasional treat, but try to focus on filling your plate with darker, leafy greens and colorful, nutrient-rich vegetables for the biggest health benefits.