Let’s face it, not everyone likes vegetables – kids included. But you know that eating a range of colourful fruits and vegetables is essential for good health.
If your children are fussy eaters, getting them to eat veggies can become quite a battle. These 12 simple ideas will help to boost the vegetable content in family meals and snacks.
Your whole family will enjoy the benefits of increased nutrients, without even knowing it!
1. Add grated vegetables, such as zucchini, pumpkin and carrot, into your beef or lamb mince. Use the mixture to make meatballs, rissoles, pasta bolognese, or tacos.
2. Puree or blend up steamed or roasted vegetables (such as carrot, red/yellow capsicum and pumpkin), and add them into a basic tomato sauce. Use the sauce with spaghetti, pasta and meatballs, or try it as a topping on pizza bases.
3. Cooked vegetables such as pumpkin, corn, zucchini, carrot and potato can be grated or pureed and added to baked meals and treats. Some options include savoury muffins, pies, quiches, scones, scrolls or homemade bread.
4. When making mashed potato, mash in some steamed cauliflower or parsnip. Mashed cauliflower and potato can also be used as a topping for Shepherd’s pie.
5. Add pureed cauliflower to the cheese sauce when making macaroni cheese.
6. Make veggie pikelets/pancakes — add grated zucchini, chopped spring onion, creamed corn and grated cheese to pikelet mixture. They will take a little longer to cook through than pikelets. These make a healthy and delicious after-school snack.
7. Try oven-baked vegetable chips: slice potatoes, carrots, sweet potato, parsnips or beetroot. Pat them dry with paper towel and spray lightly with oil before baking until crispy.
8. Make tasty noodle fritters by adding egg, peas, corn, grated zucchini and grated cheese to cooked 2-minute noodles. Cook small portions of the mix in a frying pan. (Image Source: https://www.healthyfood.com/healthy-recipes/ham-and-noodle-fritters/)
9. Jazz up an omelette by mixing eggs with grated veggies, such as cauliflower, carrot, and broccoli.
10. Make an easy blended vegetable soup using mixed frozen vegetables.
11. Use a spiralizer or julienne peeler to create zucchini, carrot or cucumber noodles to add to spaghetti or noodle dishes. They provide great colour plus a nutrient boost.
12. Puree/mash pumpkin, capsicum or sweet potato with tomato and spread on bread. Top it with cheese and grill to make cheese toasties.
Good nutrition is vital for healthy and growing kids. For parents, information about healthy eating can sometimes seem overwhelming or confusing. If you have any concerns about your child’s nutrition, our paediatric dietitians can help.
They are qualified and experienced in all aspects of children’s nutrition, including food allergies, eating disorders, fussy eating and complex needs associated with developmental delay or disability.
Find out more on our dietetics page, or contact us on 1800 436 436 .