The best way to get kids to eat their veggies is to make your home a veggie and fruit oasis. I recently realized our shopping cart was full of sugary carbs. Somewhere down the road we made a habit of including chips, cookies, pastries and similar items to our shopping list.
Plus, we were beginning to eat out a lot and that usually entailed more carbs and less fresh fruit and veggie options. I was starting to feel guilty about this new habit and quickly zapped out of it with a couple of quick and easy solutions...
1. Limit other options. Shopping trips now include spending a lot of time in the produce aisle. This means I'm stocking up on all things healthy and "finger-foodie"! This gives kids the same snacking-feel without the sugar loaded, empty calories. Think: grapes, cherries, apples, celery sticks, broccoli bites, cherry tomatoes and more! Stocking up on these and skipping crackers, cookies and chips gives my kids less options and healthier choices to get use to. Vary what you buy and eventually you'll end up with an assortment your kids favor.
2. Make veggies with every meal. This is a must. It can be as simple as corn or peas, but always have them handy. For us this usually means always including a side salad. Soon enough even kids who claim they don't like salad will come around. My 8-year old is all about healthy salads for lunch or dinner. My five year old picks her favorite veggies out of our typical salad: cucumber, olives, corn... but she's eating her veggies.
3. Keep it healthy while eating out. Don't order the kids meal with a side of fries. Whether it's fast food or sit-down joints there's now plenty to pick from: salad, broccoli, carrots, fruit. To me I vary what each of my kids get and having three means we're skipping on a ton of side orders of fries. One has the broccoli, the other applesauce, and so on. After doing this enough times, kids independently begin picking non-carby sides on their own. Just today my daughter picked a side of broccoli with her grilled cheese sandwich during her bday dinner #winning.
4. I've said this before and I'll say it again: add veggies to smoothies and homemade ice pops. This is such a fun and delicious ways to get in healthy veggies such as kale and spinach. Kids need to stock up here but eating it raw isn't always appetizing.
5. Eat your own veggies! Set the example at home and while out. Kids will eat what you eat, so if you're bypassing all the healthy meals so will they. Make a habit of ample fruit and veggie consumption a family habit!
Share your tips too and comment below!