Getting children to eat more vegetables is never an easy task. Kids are masters of sneaking peas under mashed potatoes, giving the family dog green beans under the table, and ‘accidentally’ dropping their least favourite vegetable on the floor. Even when they do start eating them, it can feel like an uphill battle that can’t be won.
Don’t fear though, we’re here to help! We love veggies, and there are some amazing things you can do with them that make them taste amazing. To help you get your veg on, we’ve created an easy 5 step guide that will turn your little one from a veggie hater to veggie lover.
Mix vegetables into their favourite meals
A side dish of boiled potatoes or raw salad isn’t going to excite anyone. Instead of adding vegetables to meals as a side, try incorporating them into the meal. You can add lentils to spaghetti bolognese, add in loads of vegetables to a tasty stir fry, and add pepper, onion, mushrooms or even spinach to pizza.
This helps the veggies go undetected.
Hide veggies in hearty vegetable soups
The oldest trick in the book… hearty vegetable soup and bread. Kids can’t complain about vegetables if they can’t see or taste them. You can easily create a tasty soup from a combination of veggies like parsnips, turnips, carrots, cauliflower, onion, and celery. Since the veggies boil down and liquify, kids don’t see the vegetables in their soup, but you can be sure they’re getting their nutrients from a bowl of hearty goodness.
Fruit and veg make great snacks
Telling kids there is fruit instead of biscuits when they ask for a snack won’t get them excited.
Instead, have a plate of cut fruit and veg out on the side they can just take from when they please. This will eliminate their need for an unhealthy snack as they can just take the fruit and grab and go. Handy places to keep these are on the side as they come in from school or right next to the fridge.
Eat vegetables as a family
Eating around the table as a family has huge benefits. Research has shown that kids will eat more vegetables and less fried foods and sugary foods when they eat with adults who do the same.
It’s important for adults to be role models who kids look up to, and copy what they do. Monkey see, monkey do.
Include at least one vitamin C rich fruit/veg per day
Including at least one fruit or vegetable rich in vitamin c each day can have some amazing benefits on the little ones! Vitamin c, also known as ascorbic acid, is necessary for the growth, development and repair of all body tissues.
It’s involved in many body functions, including formation of collagen, absorption of iron, the proper functioning of the immune system, wound healing, and the maintenance of cartilage, bones, and teeth. So if your little one gets a bump or a cut, they’ll be sure to recover quickly.
Some great sources of vitamin C are oranges, grapefruit, strawberries, melon, tomato, and broccoli each day.
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