Kid-Friendly Vegetarian Recipes
Kids have a reputation for being picky eaters; and vegetarian households are no different. In general, introducing new plant-based dishes is much more effective if you keep meal time and your discussion of foods consistent and positive. The fact that you are probably more mindful of food in general as a vegetarian means your child may actually get superior nutrition than their chicken-nugget eating classmates. Lastly, remember that raising your child in a vegetarian household is fine, but at some point, s/he will have to make their own decisions.
Cheese Makes Everything Better
If you eat cheese, remember that it adds a familiar taste to new foods. Melting cheese over roasted broccoli will usually win kids over. Try pureéing freshly cooked squash, bell peppers, and/or tomatoes for delicious and incredibly healthy homemade soup. Adding a splash of cream or shredded cheese will appeal to most palates while adding calcium and other healthy nutrients. Give your little ones a boost of healthy Omega-3s by buying local grass-fed dairy products whenever possible.
In general, children are more sensitive to smells and tastes than adults. Strong flavors like beets or kale may be overwhelming. There are two options to get around this: combine these vegetables in small amounts with kid-approved ingredients like noodles or rice. Try mixing milder greens like Swiss Chard in with pasta sauce. The other strategy is to continue offering bites of the dish on a regular basis and mentioning how tasty it is, without forcing the issue.
Teach Enjoyment and Mindfulness
Gathering around food is an ancient tradition for a reason! It’s a great time to put everything else aside and connect with your loved ones. Try eating with no phones on the table, and turn the TV off. Engage children’s natural curiosity by inviting them into the kitchen to “help”; there are activities for a huge variety of ages. Everything from tearing chard leaves off of stems to peeling garlic or helping knead dough teaches children about where their food comes from and gives them the special feeling of being included in such an essential activity. If you garden, try including your kids, too. Let them pick out a vegetable to plant, and invite them to watch it sprout and grow over the weeks. You might even be reminded of how amazing the natural world is, too.
Sun Basket combines farm-fresh foods with professionally-developed recipes so you can craft you very own expert level vegetarian dish. Being a parent is a full time job, and many busy families are always looking to save time. Sun Basket takes care of the meal planning, shopping, and measuring for you, and delivers organic and amazingly fresh ingredients straight to your door.