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Pulling A Sneaky: 5 Great Ways To Make Your Kids Eat Their Veggies

By: Donna Chaffins | Date: October 13, 2012 | Categories: Children, Family and Health, Food, Guest Posts
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Guest Post

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Vegetables are healthy; they are natural, and colorful, and just plain good for you. However, children don’t always think that, mostly because health doesn’t matter all too much for them in the way that flavor does, and with entire food corporations out there cashing in on your kids’ veg aversion by supplying your grocery stalls with more and more junk food, you would find yourself at wit’s end.

Trying to convince them to eat spinach because Popeye does isn’t going to kick it anymore because firstly they might not know who Popeye is anymore, and secondly who wants to eat doubly icky vegetables from a can?

You really don’t want to betray them, but you don’t really want to waste the effort of preparing healthy meals either, so sneaking vegetables into their meals is a tactic you should keep ready.

Secret Veggie Pasta Bake

Foolproof: all you have to do is bake pasta how you would normally bake pasta, following a family recipe or just winging it. Only, you add vegetables! You can do this by blending your choice of vegetables with the tomato sauce; some recipes call for a whole aubergine, courgette, and two whole bell peppers all into the sauce! The lovely thing about vegetables is that once cooked they can be pleasantly sweet, and sweet is good with tomato sauce, and with children as well.

You could also opt to blend in carrots, which are rich in beta carotene and excellent for the eyes. After baking in the oven, you might wonder what it tastes like…just like a nice ol’ pasta bake. But this time you can laugh maniacally as your children eat it up, unknowingly consuming a healthy serving of their most abhorred vegetables.

Cheesy Veg Pops

Okay, so they’re not exactly hidden. More like blanketed. Under a layer of melty cheesy goodness. And it’s so easy you wonder why you never thought of it before: your run of the mill steamed/roasted/boiled/fresh vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, carrot sticks etc., under a sheet of gooey cheese singles.

It could be tempting to just flat out offer a cheese fondue which would be completely besides the point as your children would most likely forego the vegetables and dip their spoons and fingers instead. The cheese singles would control the cheese intake, all the while covering enough vegetable to seem interesting and tasty. Remember to serve in bite sized pieces so as to avoid the derelict looking leftover veggie bites later on.

Sneaky Mac n’ Cheese

It might not be possible that there is a child that would say no to a bowl of mac n’ cheese. If anything, they’d have this for a day. A week. A month! Preferably the ones that come from boxes, unfortunately for you, which would probably have you tuck away the vegetables for now.

Nay! Veggie Puree is your new best friend. You could still keep on with the boxed mac n’ cheese, but sneak in the vegetables by means of puree. But because the color of a traditional mac n’ cheese could be quite limiting to the choice of vegetables, you should stick to mild and pale colored vegetables, like cauliflower and zucchini to puree, or sweet potato and carrots, to add a more vivid orange color. Add more cheddar cheese to mask the strong carrot flavor, though.

Sneaky Pizza

Remember the vegetable puree blended into the tomato sauce? Yep, you can use it on here. Go completely nuts (but pray, taste your crazy experiments; remember the vegetables have to be incognito!), all that sneaky sauce is going to be hidden under a layer of mozzarella cheese anyway. Prepare decoy toppings and have your children put on their topping choices. It’d be funny to bring out diced vegetables for toppings too; you’ll be surprised at how they put some of those in too, for color!

Sneaky Soup

Although…not so sneaky. But they will be blended beyond recognition. Go with the more naturally sweet vegetables like carrots, sweet corn and squash. You can go with one vegetable at a time, or combine many! Imagine the plethora of flavors! Serve in a cute bowl or mug. Never forget presentation!

Author Marc Webster works at All Time Medical, a health and medical supply company which specializes in wheelchairs and walkers with seats. Read his latest article on 5 Health Hazards Pet Owners Should Watch Out For on GeneralHealth.comli.com.

63 Responses to Pulling A Sneaky: 5 Great Ways To Make Your Kids Eat Their Veggies

  1. Haha very sneaky ideas, we got to get the veggies in any way we can!

  2. Mellisa says:

    Great tips for my picky eaters!

  3. Stephanie says:

    thanks for the tips!!

  4. Stefanie says:

    Carrots are easy to grate and sneak into almost anything.

  5. Louise says:

    I’m not above hiding them in foods they love

  6. Elena says:

    Great tips! My son loves mac and cheese with veggies

  7. Sneaky pizza is a great idea!

  8. I love sneaky tips for kids! Unfortunately, my kids don’t even like mac and cheese, weird, huh? I think sneaky pizza may just work, though! Thanks for the tips!

    • My son loves both mac n cheese but he won’t eat it if he see anything else in it (so I’d have to puree sweet potatoes, cauliflower, carrots, etc). And he loves pizza, but cheese only, and sometimes pepperoni… so pureeing into the sauce would be perfect!

  9. I’m bookmarking this! Great tips.

  10. Colleen says:

    I wish I knew all of this when my kids were young.

  11. Courtney says:

    I use to be a nanny and I would make spinach peanut butter and jelly. She loved it!

  12. Linda Y. says:

    Great tips! I was definitely a kid who didn’t want to eat her veggies!

  13. Kathleen says:

    Love these tips. My boys love veggies, except my youngest it is always hard to get him to eat any.

  14. Leilani says:

    I’ve tried these and unfortunately for me, my 3yo spots anything I put in there. The only way that I can get her to eat veggies is if I juice them and turn them into pops.

  15. Stefani says:

    I sneak and add spinach to my lasagna!

  16. LOL I like the way you think! Sneaky sneaky!

  17. Thanks for the wonderful tips!

  18. We love making “mac and cheese” but using butternut squash as the “cheese.” My picky, veggie hating son LOVES it

  19. I think the best way to get kids to eat their veggies is to involve them in cooking, and also see you eating them. We add veggies to things, but we don’t sneak them.

    • I’ve always involved my son in the process of cooking, and I love all vegetables and eat them all the time. Yet, my son just doesn’t like anything other than a white potato (mashed, baked, or fried). So I have to sneak them in. :/

  20. Lolo says:

    Sneaky pizza works great! My son loves fruit and veggies though!

  21. Liz Ticona says:

    thanks for the ideas. love the Cheesy Veg Pops and the sneaky mac and cheese. I do that for my nieces. I make them pasta with spinach and basil sauce which makes the sauce green so i told them it was green mac and cheese (though no cheese in it) and they ate it :) i’ll do the same and some of your tips when my son starts eating solids :)

  22. All great ideas! I need to do this for my hubby!!

  23. Liz says:

    Brilliant! My dad used to blend them into spaghetti sauce. We ate green sauce on more than one occassion!

  24. Mommys Juice says:

    Great ideas! As odd as it sounds, my kids actually love their veggies. And even more odd, they prefer them raw. Of course they are usually raw and covered in Ranch Dressing but I can live with that! Thanks for sharing.

  25. KG says:

    The mac and cheese will definitely work for my kid. He LOVES cheese!

  26. Sharon says:

    Okay, I am LOVING the sneaky mac and cheese! OH, I am sooo doing that this week. I gotta book mark this for a couple of the other tips.

    What a great idea…I feel like a ding dong after six kids and not trying a few of these. DUH!

  27. Thomas Murphy says:

    great ideas! i’m going to try the Sneaky Pizza

  28. Becky Jane says:

    My mom would mash yams in with our masked potatoes just to get us to eat them…she always told us that the potatoes were just extra yellow this time.

  29. Marcie W. says:

    Great suggestions! I’m thankful that my one picky eater is starting to come around a bit.

  30. Lonna says:

    Perfect way to get my kids to eat their vegetables. I only wish there was a way I could sneak them into cleaning their rooms.

  31. Theresa says:

    Such sneaky and awesome ideas. ;)

  32. Jenn says:

    Good ideas! Thanks!

  33. Kelly R says:

    Thank you for the tips, my kids are so picky and it is so hard to get them to eat Vegies.. I will have to try these ideas.

  34. Pam says:

    Love all of these ideas to work those veggies in your diet.

  35. Great ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  36. I absolutely LOVE this post! I am in dying need of this info for my son… he is being super picky with his veggies lately! Thanks so so much!

  37. Marie says:

    Brilliant! Kids wouldn’t know what they had! lol, healthy and yummy, just don’t divulge there’s veggies! :) Thanks for sharing!

  38. Chelsea says:

    Great tips! As a child I always ate my veggies. I guess there are some weird kids out there who hate veggies! Thanks for sharing! :)

  39. I am very lucky that my girls will – and always have – preferred vegetables to any other kind of food. My HUSBAND on the other hand is the one I have to “sneak” vegetables into LOL

  40. Garf says:

    My mother couldn’t get me to eat veggies when I was a kid but now, at early 30s, I eat almost all kinds of vegetables. Thanks to my hubby for a good influence.

  41. Rachel says:

    Great tips!! I’m going to try the pasta bake one soon :)

  42. I love these recipe ideas!! Pastas work best at our house!

  43. I like sneaky pizza! I put onions and mushrooms on my pizza and since the girls will “have” to eat anything I eat, they’ll usually go for those. But sneaking things into sauces is brilliant!

  44. Holly says:

    Great ideas. We luckily have great eaters but I also throw veggies in whenever I can. Soup is a great way to get more and more veggies. Spaghetti is our other favorite. If it doesn’t have mushrooms, zucchini, carrots, and onions in it its not spaghetti.

  45. Rachel says:

    Sneaky indeed. I got lucky in that I have 2 kids who love their veggies. How did that happen? But there are still times I want them to eat more. I love the pizza idea.

  46. Great ideas! Food processors are awesome for this.

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