Ways to Encourage your Preschooler to eat more Veggies

spinachIf your kids are anything like mine, encouraging them to eat their vegetables is not the easiest of things to do, really, convincing my hubby to eat greenery can be a challenge.     Here are some of the ways I have hidden vegetables into fairly common, kid-friendly meals.   Do you have any ways that you have encouraged your kids to eat more variety!   I’d love to hear them!

Spaghetti Sauce:

I love spaghetti sauce.   It has such a strong flavor you can hide almost anything in it!   We have hidden squash, spinach, peas, carrots, as well as traditional sauce veggies like onions, peppers, mushrooms and garlic.   You can mix the foods into the sauce one of two ways.   I personally prefer chunks of veggies, but my kids would rather not see that they are eating something green.   For their sake, I put the veggies through the food processor.   When they are chopped finely even my hubby can’t tell that I’ve hidden several handfuls of peas or half a squash into the sauce!     This is a habit I began when I was making my own babyfood.   I would collect veggies that are leftover from meals and combine them in a bag in the fridge, when the bag is full I food process them, freeze the cubes (or the fishes) and pop them into a ziplock.   I use about   3-4 “cubes” per meal.   Or for babyfood, 1-2 cubes would equal a jar.   I am still food processing veggies even though my youngest is past that stage I just love the ease of adding cubes to whatever is my meal for the day.Hide vegetables in food

Sweet breads (banana bread, corn bread, some cookies, brownies, etc.):

These are a big harder to hide veggies in, my kids will eat them with the veggies, but my hubby swears he can “taste” them.   For this reason, I tend to use sweeter veggies and ones that have a more mild flavor.   I also either shred or food process them before adding them to the food.   We have used carrots, corn, sweet potato, squash, cucumber, etc.   I add them along with the wet ingredients.     As my family is a bit picker about veggies in their cupcakes, I add only a cube or two per batch of sweet bread.

When in doubt, cheese it out!

IMG_2332My kids love, LOVE, cheese.   Everyother week when my hubby works late we make mac-n-cheese.   You’d be amazed at the stuff I’ve hidden in there!   Squash, spinach, peas, tomatoes, peppers, green beans, brocolli, carrots, corn, really, I don’t think there is a veggie I haven’t at least tried to hide in our Mac-n-cheese!   Stuffed Lunch Rolls taste great with veggies layered in amongst the rings of cheese.   We’ve added peppers, onions, brocolli heads, spinach and even my purred veggie cubes as a spread in the lunch rolls.

Another Quirky Momma uses smoothies as a way to get her son to eat more veggies.   He loves his green smoothies.

How have you convinced your kids to eat more vegetables?

2 Comments

  1. For me the trick is giving food fun names! A broccoli TREE is much more fun to eat. We eat pea balls, carrot coins, apple cookies, or take any assortment of things and arrange it into a picture. I love to make “fun lunch plates” taking our assortment of healthy foods and making it into a face or an animal. The place I do love to “sneak” in a veggie is pancakes. If we have pancakes for supper I blend in some spinach with the liquids and then add blueberries and some ground flax to the batter as well. They turn green, but taste great.

  2. Pancakes! Brilliant! My Tummy is a bit rumbly right now, and pancakes with veggies for dinner sounds terrific! Green pancakes, my little fella loves green! Thanks for the dinner idea

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