If you’ve got a picky eater, it can seem almost impossible to feed your kid their recommended servings of veggies per day. Whether you’re negotiating at the dinner table or trying to come up with creative new recipes, finding ways to get your kids to eat more veggies can certainly be a struggle.
Although I would not recommend tricking kids into eating vegetables, as it is vital that they learn the importance of them, there are certainly some creative ways to make eating vegetables just a little bit more enjoyable. So, here are 10 simple ways you can add a few more servings of vegetables to your child’s school lunch without kicking up a fuss.
1. Egg Muffins
Egg muffins or savory muffins are a great way to add a few more veggies to a meal in a format that is recognizable. Essentially the handheld version of scrambled eggs or a crustless quiche, egg muffins are simple to prepare and store well in the fridge for up to a week.
2. Dips & Hummus
Not only do dips and hummus help to provide flavor to vegetables to help make them more appealing, but hummus comes in a variety of vegetable flavors and dips like tzatziki come packed with cucumber to help increase the total number of servings of vegetables.
3. Muffins, Breads & Loaves
4. Pasta Dishes
Whether they are cooked right into the sauce or simply tossed in, adding some simple veggies or finely chopped leafy greens to your child’s favorite pasta dish is a great way to incorporate some extra vegetables.
5. Soups & Stew
Whether it’s a simple tomato soup or a chunky minestrone, adding an extra dose of veggies to a bowl of soup can help to increase overall intake (for both kids and parents alike!). Not to mention, they can be eaten hot or cold making them convenient to pack.
Find me a child who doesn’t love a fritter! Whether they are broccoli, zucchini, corn or carrot, you can basically make a fritter out of any vegetable, and they are delicious on their own or paired with a dip.
7. Grain Salad
Leafy green salads aren’t really a kid favorite, however, make-ahead salads such as quinoa salad, bean salad or pasta salad tend to be more kid-friendly. Packed full of whole grains and energy-dense carbohydrates, they are sure to provide a good dose of energy while being a vehicle for veggies at the same time.
8. Lettuce Wraps
Swap traditional wraps for lettuce wraps to help add some leafy greens to a lunch box, or try something a little different and whip together some deli roll-ups with hidden greens and veggies at the same time.
Incorporating simple sauces and dressings such as pesto, salsa, and guacamole into meals may not add a full serving of veggies, however, it’s important to keep in mind that every little bit counts.
Last but not least, it is important to remember that kids eat with their eyes, so (if time permits) presenting vegetables in fun shapes or formats can help to increase their interest in consuming them.