Getting Your Kids to Eat Veggies
Almost every parent has become frustrated with their child’s determination to ignore their vegetables. The best way to establish a life-long love of veggies is to start offering them at an early age. Kids that become accustomed to vegetables early will typically continue to eat them. However, if you already have a picky eater, there are some strategies that you can try to make veggies a healthy habit.
Finger Food Snacks
Fruits and veggies make a great finger food snack that kids can eat on the go. It will require a little work on your part to make them appealing and ready to eat. Carrot and celery sticks, jicama, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, snap peas, bell peppers, and cauliflower florets are all easy to prepare. You can also incorporate sliced versions using different cuts for a “fancy” touch. Salsa and other dips can make veggies more appealing.
Make a Salad
A salad is one of the easiest ways to get kids used to veggies and they’re not limited to plain iceberg lettuce. There’s romaine lettuce, endive, arugula, spinach, and kale – all of which can be utilized in combination for a salad that’s tasty and healthy.
You can also add peppers, mushrooms, onions, and cheese shreds. There are also convenient, pre-bagged lettuce mixtures. Be sure to try a variety of dressings to find which one strikes a chord with your child.
Veggies at Every Meal
Every meal should include at least one veggie and you can make a game of trying a new veggie each day or week. It will give kids exposure to different types of vegetables and you’ll find out which ones are their favorites for future meals. For example, use sweet potato fries instead of traditional potatoes.
Veggies can be more than a side dish. There are dozens of recipes in which vegetables such as zucchini can be substituted for traditional pasta such as spaghetti.
Make it Fun
Sometimes it’s all in the presentation. Different shapes and cuts can transform an ordinary vegetable into something fun to eat. You can also add veggies into dishes that you already know your child likes such as mac and cheese, tacos or pizza.
If your child doesn’t like a certain vegetable, don’t give up. Kids may like certain veggies steamed or grilled rather than raw. The cooking method can make a world of difference. Don’t forget to make full use of dips such as salsa, ranch or hummus. Kids like to dip just as much as adults.
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