Food Showdown: Which Veggie Packs More Nutrients?


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  61 comments   :  64,074 Views

We all know that veggies are good for us: they're great sources of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Scientific research has shown that cruciferous vegetables in particular may reduce the risk of lung, colorectal, stomach, breast, and prostate cancers. But some cruciferous vegetable varieties are more powerful than others.

When faced with broccoli and cauliflower on a vegetable tray, which tree-like veggie should you choose to get the most bang for your nutritional buck?

The Winner: Broccoli!
There was a reason why your mom made you finish your broccoli at dinner—it's crammed full of good stuff! A one-cup serving of broccoli has 205% of your daily recommended value for vitamin C, 194% of your daily value for vitamin K, and 45% of your daily value for vitamin A. Cauliflower makes a valiant effort, but doesn't hold a candle to its green cousin. A one-cup serving of cauliflower contains 91% of your daily value for vitamin C, which is still nothing to sneeze at, but only has 14% of your daily value for vitamin K and trace amounts of vitamin A. However, cauliflower is still a great source of fiber and folate, which helps create healthy red blood cells, and also contains fewer calories than broccoli per serving (29 calories vs. 44 calories). Load up your plate with each of them for the best of both veggie worlds!

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  • 61
    I love broccoli, fresh from the garden it is one of my main summer veggies, and one of the few veggies that taste good in the winter from the store. - 9/25/2017   10:26:27 AM
  • 60
    I put them both in a veggie smoothie (with a number of other veggies) - 8/27/2017   6:51:56 AM
  • 59
    thanks - 5/31/2017   2:35:55 PM
  • 58
    I really enjoy Broccoli but only eat Cauliflower if I have to, not by choice. - 12/4/2016   9:33:55 PM
  • 57
    I love both broccoli and cauliflower! :)
    - 1/9/2015   8:52:17 PM
    I prefer cauliflower, but we tend to eat broccoli when we have asian food. I don't eat either one of them raw only cooked.

    I don't really understand people comment's on frozen vegetables being cheaper than fresh, not my experience. While I agree that some produce is pricey, you can find deals, and Costco is an excellent source of produce, good prices and quality. A bag of fresh broccoli at Costco is very reasonable and you don't have to deal with those horrible stems that you find so often in frozen broccoli.

    I've tried the cauliflower mash, the texture leaves much to be desired. - 10/9/2014   8:58:08 AM
    Cauliflower is my favorite . - 9/17/2014   9:09:15 AM
  • 54
    The greener the veggie the better the choice. This is one of the few veggies my daughter will eat....thank goodness :) - 1/5/2013   3:43:19 PM
  • 53
    I used to eat broccoli cooked but now I can not stand it cooked I eat it raw now. I know the benefits. - 10/22/2012   10:29:24 AM
  • 52
    What about people with hypothyroidism....? Broccoli has goitergens in it..and quite a bit of them...shame too, because I LOVE broccoli. X3 - 10/18/2012   2:28:21 PM
  • 51
    I suppose it has to be mentioned, but the difference in calories is pretty insignificant. Should that 15 calories affect my choice? At the end of the day what difference would that make? Both are VERY low caloried and you could eat a ridiculous amount of either and not be hurt by it. - 9/22/2012   2:20:07 PM
  • 50
    This is good news because I like broccoli better! - 9/9/2012   1:26:15 PM
    I love them both and recently have added Kale to my list of veggie favs. - 8/25/2012   5:58:44 PM
  • 48
    I vote for kale. It's also good in a shake. - 6/26/2012   12:29:53 AM
    Neither. Spinach is the winner! Haha - 6/3/2012   10:29:07 AM
  • 46
    I LOVE broccoli! - 5/17/2012   11:27:32 AM
  • 45
    Interesting! What about broccoli vs asparagus? - 5/17/2012   12:19:15 AM
  • 44
    I love both! - 5/15/2012   9:47:35 PM
  • 43
    Ooooh. I can not STAND the white stuff. (I can't even bear to say its name!) I do love me some broccoli though. It is my #1 favorite veggie and I eat it several times a week, lightly steamed or in stir fries. I love the taste, I love the texture, and I'm so glad to know it is one of the healthier options out there. Mmmmm - 5/15/2012   9:50:54 AM
  • 42
    Fresh or frozen, we always have it in the house. Sprinkled with lemon is the best! - 5/15/2012   5:53:04 AM
    The best rule of thumb is the more color, the more nutrients, ie, iceberg vs romaine lettuce, white vs sweet potatoe. A dark fruit is usually sweeter than it's paler counterpart. - 5/14/2012   4:48:28 PM
    I also love them both and eat Broccoli almost every day. And LYNCHD05 - yes, mashed cauliflower in place of mashed potatoes is a great alternative! Joy Bauer has a great recipe for those on her site that even kids will eat!
    - 5/14/2012   11:23:38 AM
  • 39
    despise them both, but eat them regularly because i know they're good for me AND because my kids like them! - 5/14/2012   10:36:39 AM
  • 38
    I love both. Had broccoli yesterday with a cheese sauce made from Cabot Cheddar. Sooo good. Had cauliflower two days ago! :) - 5/14/2012   10:36:31 AM
  • 37
    I like them both, especially baked in the oven from frozen at 350F for 20 mins. But talk about a 1-2 punch...keep back 50 feet... LOL - 5/14/2012   3:59:20 AM
  • 36
    Definitely like broccoli better but they're both tasty when cooked well. - 5/13/2012   10:36:32 PM
  • 35
    My number 1 veggie! - 5/13/2012   10:23:02 PM
  • 34
    love them both.......have you ever tried mashed califlower (used instead of mashed potatoes) excellent! - 5/13/2012   7:25:21 PM
  • MRSBOND2012
    My 8 year old daughter and I are Vegans and we both prefer brocoli over any thing really but I like cauliflower as well the green vegies are the best.... - 5/13/2012   6:33:08 PM
    silly post. I don't decided what I eat based on how much vitamin inside per container but overall nutritional value combined everything, not just per meal but per day or week. If I found something is missing, I try to balance it. - 5/13/2012   5:54:04 PM
  • STREO2004
    Love them both, but eat more brocolli - 5/13/2012   4:58:20 PM
  • 30
    Broccoli is the BEST for me.
    I eat it almost every day: whatever warm food I eat I add 200 g broccoli steamed in microwave, and never get bored.
    It goes well with almost everything.
    - 5/13/2012   3:54:45 PM
    Great job! - 5/13/2012   3:34:40 PM
  • 28
    Count me in with all the Spark Peeps who love their broccoli ! Broccoli and cauliflower were the two veggies I would eat as a kid. And I still eat them now. Love them both !
    - 5/13/2012   2:46:14 PM
  • 27
    Yum that is my fav veggie! I eat is so much. Need to do it more and more. :) - 5/13/2012   12:31:29 PM
  • 26
    We eat broccoli and cauliflower every week, along with chard and kale. We have green vegetables every day. When it's available, we have broccoli rabe, and sometimes broccoletti. I lightly steam it and then either drizzle it with butter or olive oil, or turn it in a pan with olive oil, garlic and hot dried chiles.

    Cauliflower makes a great mash! Also a paleo crust for pizza.

    I would never ruin a vegetable by using margarine or butter substitute - those aren't real foods. - 5/13/2012   10:31:06 AM
  • 25
    Love them both steamed or raw! - 5/13/2012   10:21:32 AM
    Love broccoli can eat it everyday. - 5/13/2012   9:16:39 AM
  • 23
    I definitely think broccoli tastes better by itself. I really only use cauliflower as a rice alternative or mixed in with other veggies. Raw cauliflower is just not yummy in my opinion. - 5/13/2012   9:16:16 AM
  • 22
    I love broccoli. I'll eat cauliflower but I don't really like it very much. Plus cauliflower always seems to be expensive at the local market. - 5/13/2012   9:00:00 AM
  • 21
    It's a good job I love both of them! :) I never understood the kids at school moaning about having to eat their vegetables, haha! - 5/13/2012   8:31:35 AM
  • 20
    Vegetables are expensive. I always buy frozen to save money. - 5/13/2012   8:06:49 AM
  • 19
    Go broccoli - 5/13/2012   7:33:34 AM
  • ATHENA160
    Broccoli is also richer in iron & other minerals. However, I love both. I'll eat them raw or cooked, but most of my family will only eat them raw. - 5/13/2012   6:41:06 AM
  • 17
    How to improve frozen dinners: fill a shallow bowl with frozen or fresh broccoli and flip the dinner upside down on top of it. Microwave. - 5/13/2012   6:29:51 AM
  • 16
    LOVE Broccoli... YAY - 5/13/2012   5:20:38 AM
  • 15
    Just tried Broccoli Rabe for first time tonight. Yum!. - 5/13/2012   1:20:45 AM
  • 14
    Broc is my fav! - 5/12/2012   10:56:04 PM
  • 13
    We eat lots of broccoli! Plain, with butter substitute and/or cheese. I add frozen baby broccoli florets to convenience food dinners...take it to work to eat with lunch. I'd say broccoli is our fav green veggie. - 5/12/2012   10:11:10 PM
  • 12
    Love them both. Eat broccoli the most. It's so easy to fix different ways.
    I don't have any in the fridge right now, but I am going out to get some. - 5/12/2012   6:03:48 PM

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