Cooking Healthy for Kids

18
April

Kids need good food and one way to get them to eat it is to get them into the kitchen. Most kids like to cook if you make it fun, easy, and fast. Give them a pint-sized apron, a small cutting board and a sturdy plastic knife. They can cut up vegetables for a putting on a pita bread to make a healthy pizza. Just a smear of tomato sauce on the pita, a pile of veggies and a sprinkle of cheese makes one of their favorite foods healthy. They can put it together and have an adult put it in the oven for them.

One of the hardest things to do is to get your kids to eat vegetables. Have the kids built a salad. Have them choose from an array of cut up vegetables to add to the salad. Encourage creativity. A funny face or a salad built like a pyramid might get them to see that eating vegetables doesn’t have to be boring. If the kids are old enough have them put cut up fruit on skewers and then dip the skewers in yogurt. Kids love finger foods.

Raw vegetables pack the most nutritional punch but roasted vegetables are sweeter. Kids can cut up vegetables, toss them with salt and olive oil and have an adult put them in the oven. Once they have cooled they can dip them in their favorite dressing.

Smoothies seem like dessert. Even though kids shouldn’t be using the blender alone with a little help they can whip up some great combinations. Let the kids pick out the fruit and the add-ins. Any fruit fresh, with yogurt, milk, soy milk, or just ice can make great smoothies. If you want a thick smoothie add ice with fresh fruit or simply use frozen fruit. Let them use their favorite flavors by mixing bananas, milk, and a couple of spoonfuls of peanut butter.

Use whole grains. When cooking with bread, pita pockets, pizza dough, or rice use the whole grain version.
Use brown rice and veggies to make rice salad with a simple oil and vinegar dressing. Let the kids whisk up the dressing, add it all together and put it in the refrigerator.

Make it cool. Popsicles are part of summertime. But the commercial ones are sadly not more than sugar, water and some flavoring. Popsicles are easy to make with a popsicle mold or paper cups and wooden popsicle sticks. Let kids simply mix together yogurt and fruit mashed up with a potato masher or fruit juice. Then pour it in the molds and wait a couple of hours for it to set up.

Take cooking healthy with kids a step further. Take them to the farmers’ market to pick out produce to use in their next cooking section. Even better, take them to an orchard or farm and let them see where produce comes from. The ultimate lesson is to let them grow some vegetables of their own. It takes some effort but it can produce a lifelong appreciation for good food.

This post was written by

jasonjason – who has written posts on Home Tips Plus.
I'm a father of three, married and a home owner since 2006. I've worked in fixing up homes and rental properties.

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