Some nights, I realize that my kids have not had any veggies during the day. Please tell me you can relate. If you can’t, I’m not sure we can be friends. If you are all “my kids drink veggie smoothies for breakfast, veggies for lunch (with roasted salmon or some other ridiculously healthy thing), veggie kabobs for snack, and a big ole salad for dinner”, I suspect you are either lying or you are in such a higher realm of parenting than me that you would look down on my hot dog lunches and peanut butter and jelly sandwich breakfasts. And in that case, please walk away from my blog. I don’t need your judgment.
Not that this is a touchy subject for me or anything.
So, for the rest of us, here is a dinner hack to up that veggie count for the day. It’s also a hack for those nights when dinner just seems really overwhelming. I have served it with salami, cheese, and crackers and called it a night.
Let me introduce you to:
THE PARTY PLATTER
The key is in the naming of the platter, it must be the PARTY platter, not veggie tray or veggie platter or raw veggies. As soon as the idea of party enters the picture, the kids don’t realize exactly what you are doing.
After calling it the party platter, start talking about how we are all going to pretend we are at a party serving ourselves and how every party has a platter of veggies like this. Okay, maybe this shows how lame our parties are, but we do always have a veggie platter. Having your kiddos serve themselves is key. Note how my 4 year old is grabbing a handful of carrots. This is her second helping from the party platter. I would have never given her that many carrots (or cucumbers or celery or peppers), but she served herself and she ate every bit.
It also helps to make a rule on how everyone has to try everything on the platter. It can just be a tiny bite, but it’s a great way to expose new veggies. After that, let them decide what to have. For some reason, G will only eat peppers (and lots of them) when they are on a party platter. If I would put them on her plate, she’d fight them.
The other key principle is to have a dip they love. Of course, we have it with roasted red pepper hummus because I’m pretty sure there is hummus in my daughters’ veins. Ranch is great, onion dip, ketchup, whatever your kids need as a vehicle for healthy food. Worry about refining their taste buds later in life.
Happy Friday folks!
Do you have any hacks for getting your kids to eat veggies? Bonus if it does NOT involve hiding veggies in things. 😉