Having trouble getting your kids to eat their veggies? Have them help prepare them. Seriously. Studies show that kids involved in the kitchen were more likely to make more nutritious choices. Plus, getting kids involved in meals usually results in them being more excited to eat the meal they have helped prepare. I have my grandkids in the kitchen all the time, and they have become pretty knowledgable in nutrition and why it is important to choose healthy options for all your meals.
GET KIDS IN THE KITCHEN
TOP 10 TIPS FOR AGES 4 - 8
- When you shop let them pick out a fruit and a veggie. Learn to prepare it together if it's a weird one!
- Get them involved at the level they're at. Maybe they can crack eggs and peel veggies. Or maybe they can pour your measured ingredients into the bowl. Even just turning on the blender or mixer makes them feel like they are an important aspect of the finished meal.
- Hand off a tedious task. My grandchildren love helping me make a melon salad by using the melon ball utensil to scoop out watermelon, cantaloup, musk melon, etc. They think it is fun, unlike me.
- Plan a weekly or monthly family cooking night.
- Choose only ingredients you're happy to serve your kids, when the whole family is eating the same meal it's inclusive.
- Get them shaking! My grandkids love to season any meal or dish with my pre-measured spices— whether it is chicken, fish, quinoa or tacos.
- Plant a garden — let your kids choose one veggie to grow.
- Look up recipes together — kids love picking a meal from pictures.
- Pack their lunch together. I like to list the food groups and have them find an item for each one.
- Be the example. They hear and see everything — if you're happy eating healthy they will be too.
As they get older up the ante in what they do in the kitchen. You'd be surprised how capable they are with guidance and supervision what your child can do in the kitchen. How do you get your family involved in the kitchen? What are your tips to make healthy eating fun?