Tips for Helping Your Kids Love their Veggies
If dinner time feels more like a battle field than a dining experience, this post is for you! Here are my tips and tricks for helping your kids learn to like veggies.
Make Food Fun
Setting the table extra fancy, having a themed dinner night, or putting little eyes on veggies are all simple ways to make real food more approachable for your kids!
Let Kids Cook As Much As Possible
Preparing/cooking food not only sets your kid up for the real world, but gives them more exposure to the foods we want them eating, in an environment that’s fun! They will be way more likely to try some nibbles of chopped bell pepper when they are putting it in a salad themselves.
Get Your Kids Involved In Meal Planning
I love getting out cookbooks and looking up recipes online and letting the boys pick out what we are having for dinner. Sometimes a meal they wouldn’t normally eat, they end up actually looking forward to trying!
Take Them Grocery Shopping
Kids don’t have a lot of control over things- which is part of why food can be such a battle sometimes! Giving them some say really empowers them to start making good choices. “Timmy we are having a nice big salad for dinner tonight! Can you pick out what veggies you think would work best?”
Take The Pressure Off
Imagine you are in a country where you don’t understand the customs very well, you sort of know the language but have a hard time expressing yourself, and all the furniture is way too big. And everytime at dinner your hosts cook you something that you have never tried before, and honestly are a little nervous to try. When you try to express your concerns, the host yells at you and threatens you will go to bed hungry if you don’t eat your meal.
Now, I’d be flat out lying if I said I have never pulled that line with my own kids.
I do however try really hard to be mindful of not getting to that place.
Kids and adults alike are way more likely to try something in a positive fun environment. It is a huge win if a child who has never liked green vegetables tries a bite of broccoli. Obviously communicate with your pediatrician to ensure your child is getting adequate nutrition. But trying to take the stress and pressure off of you and your child at dinner time is the relaxed mealtime you both deserve.
Eat Veggies Yourself
I know this sounds like a no brainer- but sometimes it can be hard! Just because I’m an adult doesn’t mean I don’t want cake for dinner. (Birthday cake with extra sprinkles if anyone is asking 😉 ) But as parents we get the chance to show are kids fruits and vegetables are a normal part of our lives.
There are studies done proving our taste buds adapt to more “bitter” tastes the more we eat bitter foods. So if you are an adult struggling with vegetable intake know that little bites over time can make them eventually be more enjoyable!
Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed! What’s your favorite vegetable?