Introduction: How to Get Your Child to Eat Vegetables
I’m a big believer in nutritional medicine so I consider the foods that my children eat to be a great responsibility. So much so that it can be a burden at times, a foodie weight on my shoulders. It literally pains me (seriously, it gives me anxiety) to watch them consume things that are either nutritionally void or down right harmful to their little immune systems.
So, what do I do about it? Well, I try to make darn sure that nothing terribly offensive makes it into the house to begin with. I keep a diet of whole foods on hand so that their options are relatively pure from the start. But I’m sure you know, just because you keep carrot sticks and zucchini lying around doesn’t mean your little minions are going to eat the things. So now what? Oh, I’m glad you asked. This week I’m going to share some of my top recipes for getting the good stuff in my kids. Starting with . . .
Step 1: Vegetable Popsicles
You read that right. My kids will eat pretty much anything if you blend it up and freeze it. And the beauty of vegetable smoothies (and fruit smoothies) is that there’s basically no way to mess it up. Just throw absolutely anything in a blender together and it will come out tasting good, every time.
This works particularly well for old bits of fresh foods that . . . aren’t so fresh anymore. That over ripe banana 0r those cut up apples that have now browned from neglect. Just add a little water or yogurt and turn that stuff to delicious sweet mush.
Carrots, spinach, avocado, ginger root . . . you can hide all kinds of deliciousness in a popsicle. Although, to be fair, I don’t lie to my kids about what goes into their favorite frozen treats. They watch me make them most of the time and ask me what’s in them the rest of the time.
Step 2: See? Kid Approved.
I believe it’s built a bit of food trust between them and I because they know I’m going to be up front about it. They’re willing to try any popsicle that I make though they like some more than others.
Don’t feel bad if at first your kids reject your veggie pop. If they’re used to those frozen koolaid concoctions, it’s going to take some adjustment time. I’ve found that if I encourage my kids to taste them multiple times and I talk up how good the popsicles are for their body, they want to eat them. They even take a sense of pride in this nutritional feat.
And it’s a sweet snack that I never feel guilty about no matter how often it’s eaten or at what time of day. You really can’t beat a vegetable breakfast that kids beg for, am I right?