Dinnertime with a toddler isn’t easy. You know how quickly it can turn into a clash of wills. Suddenly, you’re no longer in the dining room but in the ring. In one corner, there’s mommy who’s trying to serve up well-rounded meals that meet her child’s nutritional needs. In the other, there’s the kid who insists on eating only PB&J sandwiches with a side of Oreos.
If you’re tired of being on the losing side of this argument meal after meal, it’s time you mix up your tactics. Your toddler may be pint-sized, but their strong will is a match for any stubborn adult. You won’t win by sheer force alone; sometimes you have to be a little sneaky. Try hiding veggies into your dishes, so your child won’t know they’re eating their greens until it’s too late. Scroll down to test out five recipes guaranteed to change your toddler’s mind about vegetables.
- Cauliflower Pizza — a gluten-free, healthy crust alternative
Chances are, your little one loves pizza. (And really, who doesn’t?) It’s a great treat for the family, but if your child only likes plain cheese or pepperoni, it’s not something you want them eating all the time. Luckily, you can add it to your regular recipe rotation by making one simple modification. When you switch out typical flour-based dough for one made with cauliflower, you can hide a veggie surprise without sacrificing on taste. Check out this recipe to learn how to make your kid’s favorite dish a little healthier.
- Veggie Meatballs — a meatless alternative to spaghetti and meatballs
Spaghetti and meatballs, all covered in cheese, is not just a song that your family likes to sing together. It’s also a classic meal that’s loved by all. While the tomatoes in the sauce pack a powerful punch of veggies, you can amp up this particular meal’s nutritional power by substituting veggie “meat” balls for the typical beef or pork ones. Follow a recipe that calls to blend its veggie balls into a paste, so there aren’t any incriminating pieces of veggies that might turn your little one off the dish.
- Deluxe Veggie Burgers — a new take on a grilled classic
When your child turns their nose up at tomatoes, pickles, lettuce, and onions, then a burger is more of a meat sandwich than a well-rounded meal. You can try mixing things up by replacing the meat with legumes and vegetables. The chickpeas and pecans keep the protein high in this recipe, but it’s the addition of bell peppers, spinach, and herbs that make this patty even healthier. Topped with their favorite condiments (a.k.a. ketchup and more ketchup), this burger tastes so good they won’t realize they’re eating a single veggie.
Try out one of these recipes tonight and see how easy it can be to sneak in veggies at dinnertime. Then slowly make your way through the rest of the list to see which one is your little one’s favorite. Before you know it, you’ll have three solid ways to meet your kid’s 5–10 a day.
Though healthy, fresh vegetables can be expensive. Your child’s newfound love for veggie-packed meals can put a strain on your budget. At first, your higher grocery bill can make it a challenge to pay other bills on time. An online cash loan offers quick financial help for you and your family when you’ve accidentally spent too much at the supermarket. You can head online as soon as you realize your groceries caused a minor cash shortage and, in some cases, get the cash you need in as little one business day. Fast acting and convenient, it makes it possible to pay for fresh vegetables without risking other parts of your finances, so you don’t have to choose between the household’s needs and your child’s health.
Forget about bringing home the bacon — try bringing home broccoli! Keep an eye on the season and download a rebate app. These simple tricks can keep your costs low, so you can continue to put the veggies on the table. There are a lot of ways to convince your child to eat healthfully, but sometimes you just have to rely on covert tactics. Don’t feel guilty about smuggling them into a dish. Until they grow out of their picky-eater phase, these sneaky recipes provide an argument-free way to get your kid eating well.