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How I Make My Kids Eat Their Veggies


I wouldn’t call my kids picky eaters necessarily. But they are quirky eaters, as I think most kids are. Some days they eat more than others, and they definitely have their preferences. Sandwiches are never eaten as intended, for example; instead they are dissected and eaten as parts. Sauce is often placed on the side. One day bananas will be their favorite and the next day they won’t touch one. And if I’m making a spicy curry dish, I know to keep the kids’ chicken separate from the rest of it so they don’t leave the table in protest. They’ve gotten pickier about their veggies over time, too, so I’ve taken to sneaking them into foods in different ways. I’m not one to take the extra step to make purees to add to sauces, but I do have a couple of good tricks that work!

How to Sneak in Veggies

1. Always offer them. If your child likes one veggie in particular, offer it often! And if you’re serving a vegetable you know they don’t like, scoop them up some anyway. You might be surprised that the day comes when they actually try it and like it. (It surprises them, too.)

2. Soups! Soups and chilis are good ways to get tons of veggies in sneakily. Veggies that they won’t eat other ways turn magically delicious in soups. My son won’t eat carrots, but in a soup he loves them. He won’t touch a tomato, but loves tomato soup. And if chunky textures are off-putting to your kids, get out an immersion blender to puree the soup. They won’t even notice veggies.

3. Beef up meats. My biggest trick lately has been to add veggies to meats and sauces. If I’m making tacos, I’ll add diced onions and peppers to the meat. If I’m making lasagna or a meat sauce, I’ll add finely chopped mushrooms. Actually, mushrooms totally work in tacos, too. Where they’d never touch a mushroom on its own, they don’t even notice it’s different than the meat if it’s added to it. I also add greens that wilt down, like kale or spinach, as seen in the meat sauce pictured above. The kids don’t even notice. Always keep frozen spinach and kale in the fridge and you’ll be set for this trick (and to add it to smoothies!).

What tricks do you use to get your kiddos to eat veggies against their will?Erin

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