While we can all agree that feeding our kids is an essential part of making sure they grow up strong and healthy, ensuring that they eat right is no easy task. Sometimes children can be quite demanding with their ever changing food preferences leaving parents with very little options to to get them to eat a balanced meal. Specifically challenging, is getting kids to eat their vegetables. Because Middle Eastern meals are filled with healthy vegetables, they are a great way to get your kids interested in veggies.
Rather than hiding chunks of vegetables in meals or inciting them with sweets,we are bringing you exciting ways to make the process less of a burden.
Get Them Involved
Your kids are more likely to eat if they were involved with its preparation and there are many ways to do this. You could go grocery shopping with them, getting them involved in vegetable selection is a great start. Say you’re making Kafta using our recipe book, in the kitchen, they can help by washing the vegetables or mixing the ground beef and spices. Additionally, you can start a small vegetable garden going in your backyard. Getting them involved in the life cycle of vegetables will surely get them excited about eating what they helped grow.
Make Food Colourful
Children love colours and guess what comes in different colours? You guessed right, vegetables. To make your kids more interested in eating their veggies, try an assortment of colourful vegetables. Let’s say you are trying out the Honey Glazed Chicken Khebab featured in this month’s recipe book, you could have a mixture of tomatoes, carrots and onions on the skewers along with the chicken. You could even throw in a nice game about colours to make things more exciting. Kids like to have fun with just about anything, why not try it with food?
Understand Their Values
Children live in their own world and are less likely to understand the importance of nutritional content the way an adult would. However, they are very aware of their size and feel limited by it. You would find that most kids want to get as tall as ‘Daddy’ or be big enough to carry a jug of juice like ‘mummy’ can. Explaining that cucumber in the Fattoush salad “helps you grow” is therefore more effective than, “it’s healthy” or “because I said so.”
It’s perfectly fine to try food with additional flavors that will be more appealing to your children. The key to getting picky children interested in eating veggies is getting them comfortable and familiar with the rejected food. If that means serving it along with something they’ll enjoy, that’s fine. The Honey Glazed Chicken Khebab is a great example. Honey is naturally very sweet and your child will be more inclined to trying a skewer of vegetables and chicken when it is sweetened.
Reward Good Behavior
Creating positive food experiences is another great way to go about getting kids interested in vegetables. Instead of forcing them to eat all of their veggies, you can encourage them to try a bite or two of something they don’t want. In the case of a salad like the Taboulleh, you could try applause or a thumbs up if they manage to finish off half of what you served.
Now that you’ve got these amazing meal time tips, getting your kids to eat their veggies will be a breeze. Simply keep it fun and exciting because kids love a good time and will appreciate it more.
If you’re looking for healthy new recipes to try, you can download our recipe book, we’ve got exciting options you’ll love.
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