If any moms out there wonder how they can get more fruits and vegetables into their kid’s diet, it’s a pain I know all too well! The amount of times that the kids turned their nose up at broccoli, spinach, even corn on the cob, made me want to tear my hair out in frustration. And the older a kid gets, the pickier they become with their foods. If anyone has teenagers that want to eat a salad, please tell me how you did it. Did you hypnotize them? For most of us, it’s a battle that will never end, and we’ve had to resort to some devious and underhanded tactics to get our children to eat the dreaded vegetable. Here’s some suggestions!
The reason why so many kids won’t eat greens is because they taste “gross.” That is the main problem, so by making the vegetables more flavorful, it will be more appealing than a pile of steamed vegetables piled on a plate. Season them, and there are a few interesting ways to make your own spices to give them a bit more pep. Use garlic powder, mixed with salt, pepper, and a little olive oil to make them taste great. In fact, the Italians make their vegetables in many interesting ways, covered in olive oil is one way, but you can roast them in the oven or chop them into tiny little pieces. And if you find that putting them in a pasta dish means that they will still pick them off their plate, puree the vegetables into the sauce, so they become part of the dish.
Pureeing vegetables is a great trick to get more vegetables into your kid’s diet, and by doing this, it takes out any of the textures that kids associate with leafy greens or hard carrot. You can make lasagnas with layers of eggplant, covered with parmesan and lots of sauce for flavor. Or you can make soups. Soups are great because they are easy to make, and you can just whizz them up using smoothie blenders, or by making casseroles, so they boil down into mush. In a casserole seems to be a popular way to get kids to eat their greens because they are covered in wonderful beef stock.
The final trick is to simply find foods that your kids love and overload them with vegetables. Many kids love Mexican food, and you can use this as an excuse to ram the wraps with salad, beans, and meat. Or serve tacos with grated carrot, lettuce, and cucumber. Grating the vegetables down to the point where you can barely see them is a great way to hide them, and even foods like burgers you can make fresh from home and put some onion into the burger mix. For kids and healthy foods, it’s all in the mind. If they can’t taste the vegetables, or they are heavily disguised in a flavorful sauce, this is how you will win the battle of the fussy eater.