One of my favorite on-the-go breakfasts is an everything bagel with garden vegetable cream cheese. Though it isn’t expensive at my local deli, the coffee I’m tempted to buy while I’m there does.
Our local grocery store sells vegetable cream cheese isn’t the same. It’s more cream cheese than vegetable so I lose the most nutritious part of this meal!
I realized I could easily make my own garden vegetable cream cheese and I’m so happy I did. The fresh vegetables that I can dice as finely or coarsely as I want, make it easy to load up my cream cheese exactly the way I like it.
Another bonus of using fresh vegetables is that the colors are so much brighter compared to the store version. I’m not one who spends a ton of time making my food look pretty, but I have learned that the more fun or colorful food looks, the more likely my kids are to eat it.
I always want my kids to be excited about eating vegetables. Yes, even if it means layering them on top of a bagel.
Ingredients I Use for Garden Vegetable Cream Cheese
This recipe is really quite simple. You only need cream cheese, fresh vegetables and a little seasoning.
I’ve tried it a variety of ways, including generic and name brand versions of both reduced fat and regular cream cheese. I’ve also experimented with a variety of vegetables.
After attempting several different versions, my favorite version uses the generic version of regular cream cheese. I don’t notice a discernible difference between the generic and name brand versions, but I do like the consistency of regular cream cheese compared to the reduced fat version.
I like to use a variety of flavors. You probably guessed this since I spread this garden vegetable cream cheese on an “everything” bagel.
So, for my cream cheese, I use bell peppers, carrots, red onions, and cherry tomatoes. I get a variety of colors, textures AND flavors.
Feel free to customize your version to your taste. Leave out any veggies you don’t like, add others you like more.
The first time I made this, I didn’t use any seasoning and that was a mistake. It was definitely missing something.
You don’t need to be heavy handed with the seasoning, but just a little garlic powder and onion powder make a big difference in the outcome! And, like most things, a little salt and pepper make this cream cheese much better.
How to Store This Cream Cheese
If you aren’t making this vegetable cream cheese to serve a crowd, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to a week if you place it in an airtight container.
I’m a big fan of repurposing items so the first time I made this, I stored it in an empty cream cheese container I had cleaned out. I reused it a couple of times before the lid cracked.
Then, I stored them in 6-ounce glass storage containers. I use these because the lids seal really well.
You can also use any of your small plastic storage containers. Ideally, they will be BPA-free and seal tight (to prevent contamination).
Garden Vegetable Cream Cheese Recipe
Here’s the recipe! I hope you enjoy this garden vegetable cream cheese as much as I do.
Remember, you can substitute in your own favorite veggies or omit any you don’t like.
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1/4 cup diced bell peppers
- 1/8 cup diced red onions
- 1/8 cup diced carrots
- 5 diced cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Pinch salt
Wash and dice your fresh vegetables and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, use a hand or stand mixer to whip your cream cheese for about 2-3 minutes.
Now mix in your garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.
Fold in your fresh veggies and scoop into a small container with a lid.
Toast and slice your bagels and spread some cream cheese on each half.