Any adult that has prepared a meal for a child will probably agree that children can be selective about what they like to eat, especially when it comes to frozen vegetables. Many times a child will eat portions of her meal and avoid the less appetizing portions, which in the child’s eyes, may be her vegetables. However, vegetables are an important part of a child’s diet that can provide a child with essential vitamins and nutrients that will aid in her development. Although a child may avoid her vegetables, there are ways to prepare frozen vegetables so a child will enjoy them.
Roast the Vegetables
Roasting vegetables is a great way to enhance the flavor of frozen vegetables with herbs. This method is best used with larger frozen vegetables, such as cauliflower and broccoli. Smaller vegetables such as peas will not hold up as well with this cooking method. Roasted vegetables are a good accompaniment to many meats, and the cooking process keeps the vegetables crisp, which may appeal to a child’s palate more than boiled frozen vegetables.
Let Them Dip
Sometimes letting a child dip their vegetables in something may help them enjoy them more than plain vegetables. Eaten this way, vegetables can be viewed as a fun finger food, more like an appetizer than an accompaniment to her chicken. There are many dips that can be used. Ranch dressing is popular among children and goes well with most vegetables. However, if your child enjoys something else like ketchup or mustard, that would work as well. The main thing is to find something your child likes to add to the vegetable to make it more fun for the child.
Let Them Choose
Sometimes children take more ownership over a meal when they help prepare or choose the meal. Frequently, they will eat more of a meal they have prepared or chosen just because they are proud that they helped cook. It can be as simple as letting your child pick out a bag of frozen vegetables at the grocery store, or more complex, such as letting an older child cook the vegetable side dish. Whichever method you choose, your children will feel ownership of the meal and will be more apt to eat it, including the vegetables.
Frozen vegetables provide nutrition and color to meals. They are affordable and there are many varieties available. Children can be picky eaters but there are strategies that a parent can utilize to convince their children to enjoy his or her vegetables. With a little persistence, these strategies can turn children into vegetable lovers instead of children who try to hide their vegetables under a napkin.