Thursday, November 3, 2011

Vegetables & Kids

You've seen me "hide" veggies from my kids already. (Here and here) But I wanted to let you know my full attack when it comes to vegetables and kids in case you need some help or encouragement.

I have a two beliefs I want to convey to my children:

(1) Vegetables and other healthy foods are important. So important that you will not always like them but you need to eat them anyway. This also transfers from the dinner table to life in many ways. Is it easy to love that person that is mean to you? No. But you need to do it anyway. Do you think that law is a good one? No. But you need to obey it as all authority is from God and the world does not revolve around you.

(2) Vegetables and healthy foods can taste great! We can work as a family to make them some of our favorite dishes. If there are veggies that your kids tend to like, be kind and feed them those foods more then the ones they hate. For example: G Boy hates peas. He has to eat them every so often because Tim and I love them, and they are a cheap and easy frozen vitamin resource, but he LOVES squash soup, sweet potatoes, green juice, and broccoli so I try to make those options available anytime I can. Vegetables should not always be a disgusting experience!

With those two beliefs in place I have a few tricks up my sleeve to get them done.

(1) Make it a snack. Anytime your child "needs" a snack offer healthy foods. 90% of the time around here I offer a fruit or vegetable. If they don't want it, that's fine. They can obviously wait until the next meal. Most of the time G boy will say no first and then 10 minutes later say, "yeah, I think I'll eat those carrots now." And the more you do it the more they will get into the routine.

(2) Make it fun.
- Put your veggies in the blender for a green smoothie. And do it TOGETHER!
- Let your child eat their peas with a toothpick
- Give them ranch for dipping. C Baby loves dipping!
- Cook them differently or "hide" them in their favorite foods but tell them they are there.

(3) Make it non-negotiable. If my kids wish to stay at the dinner table, have more of something, or have dessert, the good and the bad on that plate needs to be eaten WITHOUT more than one complaint. Feel free to insist veggies be eaten before the chicken and bread will come out.

It can be done! Good luck!


  1. This was a great read for me today. We have let our kids get away with eating grilled cheese and nuggets for far too long now. We haven't done it yet, but I think we are about to have the dinner battle of the wills pretty soon here. It will probably take a few days, but if they get hungry enough they will eat, right? Making multiple meals for dinner is just too much work! Ali

  2. Awesome! You go girl! It will take a little while to teach new habits but keep that bar high!