Clever Ways to Sneak Veggies Into Your Child’s Meals

Clever Ways to Sneak Veggies Into Your Child’s Meals

If you’re a parent to a difficult eater, you’re not alone. Parents everywhere understand the struggle of trying to incorporate more vegetables into their children’s diets. After all, we know that vegetables are packed with essential nutrients and fibre that are essential to our little ones’ growth and development. Unfortunately, we are also familiar with the faces of disgust and chorus of “ewwwws” that come our way with just a single mention of broccoli or spinach. Luckily, we’ve got you covered with three ingenious strategies for sneaking more veggies into your child’s meals. Let’s make mealtime peaceful once again.

1. Colourful Purees in the Favourite Dishes

In a child’s eyes, unfamiliar food can sometimes seem a little scary. They’re constantly wondering if new food will taste good or leave them feeling sick. So when it comes to vegetables, this fear factor is often multiplied. One easy way to make veggies less intimidating for your child is to blend them up into a smooth, colourful puree. Mix it into your child’s favourite dishes so the presence of the vegetable remains undetectable, both in terms of texture and appearance.

Try adding in a mixed vegetable puree into pasta sauces, casseroles, soups, and even macaroni and cheese. For instance, pumpkin and carrot puree can add a beautiful and vibrant orange hue along with a creamy texture to most pasta dishes. Tasting delicious and providing the meal with plenty of vitamins A and C, it’s a win-win situation. How about a mix of spinach and zucchini? This tasty mix can enhance the nutrition of lasagna or soup without altering much of the taste at all. It’s as easy as steaming your chosen vegetable, blending them until smooth, and incorporating them into your chosen dish. With so many options to try, you’ll have a blast experimenting.

Alyson-Mcphee-Ywg-Ndhxvqy-UnsplashPhoto by Alyson McPhee on Unsplash

2. Making Veggie-Infused Baked Goods

There’s nothing more deceptive than a delicious baked good loaded with hidden vegetables your child could never imagine. When it comes to another excellent method for concealing vegetables, baking tops the list. Not only will you be able to enhance the nutritional value of the food, you can also create a unique and magical flavour your child may find enjoyable.

Classic examples of this option include zucchini bread and carrot cake, both baked goods that most kids love. But why not take it a step further and be even more adventurous? Try experimenting with sweet potato muffins, beetroot chocolate cake, or even spinach pancakes. These scrumptious treats are able to mask the vegetable’s flavours while providing your kid with that extra serving of nutritious goodness. You can also use vegetable purees as mentioned earlier to replace part of the fats in recipes, making your baked goods lower in calories and even healthier. The added bonus is that children often love helping with baking, making this a fun way to spend quality time together.

Annie-Spratt-C6Mdgjkg He-UnsplashPhoto by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

3. Creative Veggie Shapes and Characters

Who says that playing with your food is always a bad thing? When it comes to getting children to eat their vegetables, a little playfulness might be the key to making things easier. Using a set of fun-shaped cutters, you can transform ordinary, boring-looking vegetables into exciting shapes and characters.

For instance, cucumber slices can become adorable little stars while carrot sticks can be crafted into cool rocket ships. If you’re feeling even more ambitious, arrange a whole variety of veggies into a colourful and edible picture on their plate. Your child’s interest in their meal is bound to skyrocket. Even better, it’s an opportunity to involve your child in the preparation process. While it’s an excellent bonding and learning experience, kids are also generally more willing to eat food that they’ve helped make. 

Baby-5320542 1280Image by Luda Kot from Pixabay

Getting your children to eat their vegetables doesn’t always have to end in an all-out war. With these three clever strategies, you can now effortlessly incorporate more veggies into your child’s meal without them even realizing it. Remember, the goal here is to not just trick your child, but to make vegetables less intimidating and more enjoyable. Best of luck!