Do your kids love greens?
Put a plate of veggies in front of your child and what do they do?
Smile, pick a piece up and chew slowly. If only…
If you’re having
trouble feeding your kid vegetables, you’re not alone and yes, that is no shock. Which kid wants to stuff their face with greens, especially when they taste like cardboard (Brussels sprouts, anyone)? So how do you get a child to like vegetables and eat them regularly? Well, here are 10 easy ways to get your kid on the veggie team!
Find out what your child likes to eat and substitute some of the ingredients with vegetables when cooking. You can include vegetables when preparing your kid’s favourite food or dish such as smoothies, cake, pizza, lasagna, spaghetti and even ice cream. There are endless possibilities to what you can do with vegetables.
At first, your child might reject the veggies you set on the table but this doesn’t mean you should stop offering them. Instead, you should include vegetables every mealtime. If they often see them on the table, they may grow to like them later.
You can do this by letting your child pick or choose the vegetables at the supermarket. At home, you can ask him or her to wash the vegetables you need for cooking. In this way, they will become interested in the vegetables they have helped to prepare.
Set a good example by showing your child that you enjoy eating vegetables. If they see you do that every mealtime, they will become curious about what you eat and they’ll eventually eat the vegetables you serve them.
Don’t force your child to eat something he or she does not like yet. Don’t struggle with them during meals. This might make them feel bad about eating vegetables and think that mealtimes are dreadful.
After an exhausting activity, most likely your child will eat almost anything you serve them. So, this is a good time to introduce burgers or sandwiches and smoothies, shakes or ice cream with vegetables as ingredients.
Toppings such as butter or a happy face can add flavour and colour to vegetables. A dip such as, mayonnaise or dressing can also catch your child’s interest, especially if it is his or her favourite.
Serve vegetables that are of different colours. Cut them into different shapes. You can add captivating alphabet-shaped noodles to a vegetable soup. Put a happy face on the food.
Discovering new things is a huge part of growing up, and that involves getting your child to be adventurous when it comes to food. Set the ‘one-bite’ rule at the dinner table, where they would have to take at least a bite of every dish served, including vegetables. This allows you to introduce new foods to your kids, while they discover that some veggies do not taste as bad as they look.
Kids absolutely love playing make believe, so why not incorporate this game while getting them to eat their greens? Let them pretend to be a dinosaur who needs to eat five brocolli ‘trees’ in order to gain super powers to outrun T-rex. Games with tons of imagination could be a good start in getting them to love vegetables.
These steps are just the beginning. As you continue your adventure down the road of feeding veggies to your child, you are bound to find a favourite veggie that your child loves. If all else fails, introduce your child to Bugs Bunny. There never was a child who did not like carrots after watching Looney Tunes!
Here are some related links you may enjoy:
Sneaky ways to get your child to eat veggies
Vegetarian weaning recipes
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