When it’s time to eat vegetables, does your child do the Brussels sprout pout? Don’t give up. It can take eight to 10 tries before children accept a new food.
Children are born with a natural preference for sweet foods and develop a liking for salty foods at around four months. That’s combined with an innate suspicion of foods unknown to them. But if a child rejects a food at first, it doesn’t mean they’ll always dislike it.
Healthy Kohl’s Kids, a partnership between Children’s Hospital & Medical Center and Kohl’s Department Stores, offers these tips to encourage your child to try the green stuff:
- Don’t overcook. Steam vegetables lightly so they taste better.
- Teach by example. Eat vegetables with your child.
- Rather than telling your child to “eat your vegetables,” offer him or her a choice of two and ask, “Which one of these do you want to eat?”
- Shop with your children. Let them pick a vegetable they like.
- Add color. Use red bell peppers, bright carrot strips, and different types and colors of lettuce. Bake shoestring “fries” out of deep orange sweet potatoes.
- Incorporate vegetables into the main dish rather than serving them on the side.
Here’s a great recipe that combines spinach with a family favorite—pizza! For more healthy recipes (with and without veggies), visit HealthyKohlsKids.com.
Ingredients (Yield: 2 servings)
- 1 store-bought whole wheat pizza crust (7-inch diameter)
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 oz part-skim fontina or mozzarella cheese, shredded
- ¼ cup cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 tsp grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 cup fresh baby spinach, chopped
- Black pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 450°.
- Place pizza crust on a baking sheet. Brush pizza crust with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil. Evenly spread garlic, fontina or mozzarella cheese, and beans over pizza crust. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese.
- In a large bowl, toss the spinach with remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil and black pepper to taste.
- Spread the spinach leaves in the center of the pizza, leaving a border around the rim.
- Bake the pizza for 8 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the spinach is wilted.
Saturated Fat: 4g
* Nutritional information is based on ingredients listed and serving size; any additions or substitutions to ingredients may alter the recipe’s nutritional content.