Frozen Sauced Vegetables: Friend or Foe?

What's really in your bag of sauced, frozen vegetables? Another Big Food surprise.When I worked at General Mills I had the chance to do some channel marketing for the Green Giant brand. This involved coming up with retailer-specific plans for how to grow the brand at customers like Wal-Mart or Costco. What always amazed me, though, was how the ingredient label of even vegetables could be so complicated! Although I didn’t think about it much back then, it’s kind of ironic that those veggies that had been doused with lots of extra additives were called “value-added” vegetables within the company. Sigh. :-(

Now while almost every piece of rationale dietary advice says we should eat more vegetables, what about these bags and boxes of sauced-up, frozen veggies? Personally, that’s where I think it can get a bit more complicated. In my book eating real vegetables of almost all sorts is a step in the right direction, but since many people don’t realize all the crazy ingredients that can be in some of these frozen vegetable mixes, I thought it would be worth sharing. After all, knowledge is power, right? So here’s the scoop on what’s in some of those bags of frozen, pre-sauced veggies, and you get to choose how to act on it, okay?

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Recipe: Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup

Bruce Bradley's Slow Cooker Split Pea Soup is a super easy, delicious meal that's filled with veggies!My grandmother was a wonderful cook and soup was one of her specialties. I remember going over to her apartment and smelling her delicious soup from the far end of the hallway.

Unfortunately we lost most of my nanna’s recipes when she passed away, but over the years I’ve done my best to replicate them, tinkering here and there to make them perfect. And if I say so myself, my Split Pea & Ham soup is pretty darn close. I especially love how it uses a slow cooker, and it’s filled with so many vegetables and peas you just can’t go wrong! Finally, if you’re a vegetarian or vegan, I’ve got you covered with a delicious, meatless version. Continue Reading >>


Why do food companies ignore real vegetables in their healthy diet advice?What’s the one healthy habit you never hear food companies talk about? It’s the power of vegetables and other plants in our diets. Don’t believe me? To help illustrate this point I took a quick look at advertising spending for the past several years, and do you want to guess what percent of spending supported healthy, minimally processed fruits, vegetables, nuts, or other plants? Less than 0.1%! 1

Think about it. Despite all the weight loss and “healthy food” ads on television, how often do you see one for vegetables? Recently I’ve seen a couple for Bird’s Eye and Green Giant sauced-up vegetables, but in the big scheme of things, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and legumes get the short end of the stick. To make matters worse these days you’re more likely to find companies advertising that their highly processed junk food is as good as if not better than real fruits and vegetables, something that couldn’t be further from the truth. Here’s just one example of this strategy brought to life by FiberOne’s Oat and Chocolate Chewy Bars:

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  1. Fruit juice advertising excluded since research demonstrates fruit juices provide significantly less nutritional benefit than their whole fruit counterparts.

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Learn former insider Bruce Bradley's Top 17 Health Scams Big Food Uses To Keep You Buying More and MoreIt’s Weight Loss Season (again)! If you’ve watched any TV the past couple weeks you’ve seen it happen before your eyes! The ads for diet plans and diet aids are streaming before us. And after months of pushing indulgence the food industry is now promoting health … or at least its version of health.

As a former food marketer who’s run countless processed food businesses in many categories, I understand how the food industry works. And this isn’t the first time I’ve written about Big Food’s paradoxical concern over weight loss. From the insanity of a “weight loss season” wedged between the holidays and the Super Bowl, to the deception of weight loss carpetbagging brands like Kellogg’s Special K, the food industry’s insincere attempts to make us healthier only accomplish one goal … making them boatloads of profits!

But after watching too many misleading ads to count and walking through several traditional grocery stores this week, I decided to share the latest ways the food industry is trying to scam us. So here’s my list of the TOP 17 ways you may be tricked: Continue Reading >>


4 Simple Last Minute REAL FOOD Gift Ideas

4 simple gift ideas that might also inspire with their real food message.Is your holiday shopping complete? I’ve almost got mine “wrapped” up. But if you’re not so lucky, here are several simple gifts that are not only thoughtful, but might also share a subtle REAL food message with your friend or loved one!

Your favorite REAL food recipe and a dish to serve it in:

Last minute gifts: recipe and serving dishWhen I got married one of our wedding presents was a wonderful recipe for a hot cheese dip with a serving dish to prepare it in. Over twenty years later I still remember the gift and who gave it to us. Why? The gift was personal, the recipe was delicious (I’ll probably share it on the blog sometime soon), and the idea was totally unique.

So if you’ve a got a simple, family-favorite REAL food recipe, write it down and wrap it up with a serving dish. My guess is it will be a gift that’s remembered for years to come! Continue Reading >>


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FAT PROFIT$ is a suspense-filled thriller set in the heart of the processed food industry. Click below to learn more!

Awards & Recognition

Bruce Bradley Named Food Hero by Allergy Kids Foundation