Healthy Food For Kids
This is quite a different post to usual, because I'm not focusing it mostly at my own age group like the text posts about exams, instead I'm opening this up to another type of followers, those with kids!
Being 19 and not having any children, this isn't a problem I've had to face, but I'm young enough to remember how much of a nightmare it was for my Mum to make my sister and I eat the healthy stuff she put in our lunchboxes. She had to be quite sneaky to get us eating wholemeal rolls instead of white and salad and hummus in our sandwiches instead of lots of mayonnaise. So I thought I'd share a few tips with you all for making healthy lunches more fun for kids.
I also remember that when we got home from school, we just wanted something yummy, which usually meant biscuits! So finding a more nutritious alternative to the junk you buy in shops is a necessity to fill their stomachs after school!
A typical breakfast that kids love it Nutella on toast. But Nutella is 50% sugar and really isn't the balanced start to the day that it promotes. Instead try making the Rawtella on my website, it's a lot more nutritious and still really tasty! Slice some strawberry hearts on top to make a cute and yummy breakfast or try some banana slices if your child likes banana.
Breakfast muffins are another good idea. Filling the muffin with lots of berries and using wholegrain flours means it's healthy, but it's also tasty! It's an easy breakfast they can eat on the walk to school if they are running late, too. Just use my Blueberry Almond Meal Muffin recipe and you can change which frozen berries you use to keep it interesting.
Another fun idea would be to have plain rice krispies with Rebel Kitchen's chocolate mylk. It's only sweetened with dates, so it's not full of refined sugar and it's made with coconut milk too. That way your kids are having Coco Pops in a healthier way!
Steer away from the traditional boring sandwiches and try some new things. Kids like food they can mess around with, food that is fun, so try lots of chopped up veggies, crackers/breadsticks, tortilla chips and hummus. Make a pot of fruit salad that you keep in the fridge and give them a little each day in a little tub. Bake your own muesli bars and give them a slice each day, it'll be far lower in the saturated fats and refined sugars of the bars you would buy in the supermarkets. Try my oatmeal raisin walnut cooked baked in a tray and sliced up for a yummy muesli bar.
Try leftovers from dinners too! Give them last night's leftover pasta and tomato sauce, or the leftover rice dish. Generally if they ate it last night they'll eat it for lunch too. There's not really a rule on what you can eat for lunch vs dinner so just go for it!
If your child doesn't have any nut allergies, most kids would love roasted/salted cashews, or even make them a little bag of trail mix, made up of nuts, dried fruit, crunchy bits of granola, etc.
Instead of one of those sugary store bought 'fruit' yoghurts, try a pot of plain yoghurt and add berries to it. Adding in blueberries, raspberries and strawberries will make it more yummy for them but it's not packed with sugar!
Give them a bottle of water to drink and you could also put in a little juice carton (ensure the only ingredient is juice, no added sugar!) or a little carton of the Rebel Kitchen kids mylks for a special treat.
It's tempting to go down the chicken nuggets and chips route for kid's dinners, but you have to remember that what foods you expose them to as a child shapes their preferences! Introduce your children to lots of new foods, don't stick with what is traditionally seen as "child friendly". Try sweet potato fries instead of normal ones, go half and half zucchini spaghetti and normal spaghetti, introduce them to homemade veggie soups that have been blended up so they can't tell the vegetables are there! Most young people who have made decisions about healthy eating now wished their parents had done a better job at introducing them to healthy food in a more adventurous way than boiled carrots and peas. Healthy eating isn't about eating lots of bland, boring vegetables! If you make the food more appetising kids won't have the same aversion to it. Get kids involved in cooling too, it really increases their interest in the food and makes them more likely to want to eat it if they have helped out. Start them off young with the notion that good food is made at home in the kitchen!