In line with Nutrition Month this July, here are some recipes to make sure your kids get their nutrients from vegetables.
Kids hate vegetables for all sorts of reasons. It’s green and at their age, it looks gross. Sometimes, vegetables also have a bitter taste which they’re not very fond of. In fact, the running joke for some children is that vegetables (particularly salad) are ‘old people food’. But these are tried-and-tested vegetable recipes that most kids like!
Instead of using sigarilyas (or winged bean) since it gets chewy, use kangkong instead! It’s cheaper and easier to find. Plus with all the coconut milk, you don’t taste the bitterness of the kangkong. As for protein, it can be anything. Sometimes, you can just open up a can of tuna or use some leftover lechon kawali.
Kids love kimchi rice because it’s bright red. But you can add a twist by dumping cheese on it. You can add Quickmelt cheese and some Emmental but mozzarella should work just as well. It also works when there’s too much chicken in the fridge from leftovers.
Triple Cream Cheese Brocolli
When moms make cheesy broccoli, they load it with all sorts of cheese. Sometimes, it’s Quickmelt, mozzarella, and Emmental. Other times, it’s parmesan and some other cheeses. All you need to do is steams the broccoli before baking it. For the broccoli broth, mix it with the milk so that all the nutrients still make their way into the dish. This recipe works with Spinach, too.
This one, even dads will love. You can make these dumplings from scratch and stuff them with so much cabbage that there’s no way kids can avoid it. What makes kids like them is that it’s crispy underneath and soft on top. It’s a nice contrast of texture. But if it’s too difficult to make, there are some ready-made ones. There’s a Korean version known as Mandu which is readily available in supermarkets.
There are no escaping veggies here! Grate some carrots, toss in some lentils, then pluck out some malunggay leaves and steam them with the rice. It adds a nice fragrance to it, too! Even if the kids will desperately try to remove the veggies, the nutrients are still in there.
Curry’s strong flavors mask the vegetables so well that kids won’t really notice them. You can toss in some carrots and potatoes, too. Or add slices of eggplant, roasted squash, and some kangkong leaves for good measure. While some moms use the simple curry powder and coconut milk combination, others use onions and Garam Masala. There’s a Garam Masala mix that is easily available here.
Please don’t make kids drink veggie juice!
Some parents might think that having kids drink veggie juice is a surefire way. But trust us when we say it doesn’t. Some vegetables have such a strong flavor profile that they can mess up the mix. Plus, when the veggies end up blended together, it looks like something straight out of Fear Factor! Besides, juicing is such a tedious affair. Washing the veggies five times over and then cleaning the juicer’s parts? You’re better off just cooking them!