We should all strive toward the goal of eating at least 5 servings of vegetables a day. Does that sound like an impossible task for your family? Do your children cringe at the sight of anything green? We’ve learned that introducing our kids to eating and appreciating vegetables and other wholesome foods at an early age is key. However, we understand that many of our families are past the toddler stage. We compiled a list of things to remember when changing the way your family eats and some simple tricks to easily incorporate veggies and other wholesome ingredients.
- It can take 10-15 “tries” before you start to like a specific food. Don’t give up hope just yet.
- Continue to put fresh veggies on your child’s plate even if they don’t eat it right away. You never know when they’ll pick it up and give it a taste.
- Never force your kids to try something new. They will when they’re ready.
- Get your child involved in shopping and cooking. When kids are involved, they are more interested in trying new things. This even works when shopping online. Kids love adding things to your online cart! Maybe try having them add Soom Chocolate Sweet Tahini to your cart. 😉
- Hide healthy foods like veggies, nuts, and tahini in family favorites. You should do this while you are trying to get your kids to eat veggies on their own. There are tons of great recipes that “hide” tahini on soomfoods.com, whether they’re in brownies (you read that right!) or even soups!
- “Hiding” nutritious foods in a meal or snack is another great way to make sure your family is getting wholesome ingredients. This is especially true when you are still making the switch to a healthier lifestyle. Most of the time kids won’t even notice there are nutrient-dense foods hiding in their favorite snacks. Try some of these tips to increase the number of servings of veggies, beans, and whole grains:
- Puree greens, peppers, carrots, and other veggies in a food processor. Pour into ice cube trays and freeze. When frozen, remove from trays and store in zip top freezer bags. The next time you make pasta, salads, or smoothies, thaw a few cubes and add them to the recipe. Try light colored veggies like cauliflower. Easily hide vegges in macaroni and cheese! This works perfectly with tahini as well since it’s light colored and makes sauces extra creamy and rich. If you hadn’t tried it yet, give our Vegan Mac & “Cheese” recipe a go.
- Smoothies are a great way to hide veggies. Toss a frozen banana, handful of fresh kale or collard greens, a few tablespoons of Soom Chocolate Sweet Tahini, and a cup of milk into a blender. Blend until smooth for the best chocolate milkshake loaded with nutrients! (If you prefer a sweeter shake, squeeze in some Soom Silan for a sweeter and richer flavor.) You can also freeze smoothies in popsicle molds for a delicious snack.
- The next time you bake muffins or cookies try adding tahini to the mix and replace eggs with ground flax or hemp seeds. They add fiber and essential fatty acids. In addition, substituting a portion of the white flour you may normally use with whole grain flours.
Have fun and experiment with your family! Scan the internet for recipes, map out a week’s worth of meals, and shop for your ingredients together. It’s a great bonding experience as you build healthier habits together!