You work hard to prepare a nutritious, delicious meal for your family, but as soon as any vegetable is spotted on the plate, they are suddenly no longer hungry, leaving you disheartened and frustrated. Children are notorious for disliking veggies so don't take it personally. Their taste buds are very different from ours and vegetables often taste bitter and weird (texture-wise) to them. As a result, no matter how many times you praise veggies for their health benefits, getting your family to actually eat them is a daily struggle.
So if you're wondering how to get kids to eat veggies so they don't miss out on important nutrients, you are not alone! While a transparent approach is great, it's not always feasible, especially with really picky eaters. And if you're worried about your little ones missing out on important nutrients, here are four stealthy ways to get everyone to consume more veggies.
How to Sneak Veggies Into Food - 4 Ways
1. Use Your Blender
When it comes to hidden veggies recipes, your blender is your best friend. Sneak greens into juices, smoothies, purees, and soups and your kids won't even notice. On the contrary, the bright colors might excite them and make them eat and drink more!
2. Make Veggie Burgers
Veggie burgers are the perfect way to sneak vegetables into your little ones’ diet! Don't have time to make them yourself? Your kids won't be able to spot the hidden veggies in the Mama’s Burger from MamaSezz, which comes to your door ready to heat and eat. Filled with zucchini, pepper, spinach, mushrooms, and carrots, getting your kids to eat their daily five just got a bit easier.
3. Bake Treats with Hidden Veggies
Vegetable muffins, cakes, and breads are another super stealthy way to sneak veggies into food. Think zucchini bread, carrot muffins, sweet potato brownies — the possibilities are endless.
Need some hidden veggies inspo? Try these kid-friendly vegan spinach muffins from the Natural Nurturer.
4. Use Their Favorite Foods as a Base
You don't need to find completely new-to-you hidden veggies recipes; reinvent old favorites by sneaking in vegetables. And if your family is new to plant-based, know you don't have to get your family eating 100 percent plant-based to reap the benefits of eating this way. Start small! Hide cauliflower in your favorite potato mash, add finely diced veggies to your bolognese, toss in small broccoli bits in your mac and cheese.
Use your imagination and expand your kids’ taste buds, while making sure that they are getting all the vitamins and minerals they need to grow healthy and strong.
If you're wondering how to get kids to eat veggies, you are not alone! If all else fails, sneak 'em in!
Use your blender to make hidden veggies recipes with smoothies, soups, and sauces. Make veggie burgers and serve with your kiddos' favorite toppings. Bake treats with hidden veggies. Hide veggies in their favorite recipes, like mac and cheese or bolognese.
Rafaela Michailidou is a Vegan Lifestyle Coach, and a freelance health and wellness content writer, with a Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.