Kid Friendly Recipes
When my kids were young, they never wanted mashed potatoes until we read The Trouble With Grownups, a Berenstain Bears book. In one scene, the cubs are bored with the same old dinner. Mama and Papa scold the cubs for building volcanoes with their mashed potatoes. Immediately charmed, my kids wanted mashed potatoes so they could rebel against the grumpy fictional bear parents. We even concocted a “hot lava” sauce for the mashed potato volcanoes.
I see nothing wrong with making food more amusing, especially if doing so inspires kids to eat it. Mashed potato volcanoes with hot lava became a fixture on their repertoire, and it accomplished the feat of getting mine to eat two — or three —vegetables in one dish. more→
Children are notoriously picky eaters, so when it comes to preparing healthy food for kids that they’ll actually eat, sometimes you’ve got to add some fun to the equation. When mine were young, I found that getting them to participate in the preparation was a good way to encouraged them, because they were more likely to eat what they helped make. I found cooking activities were particularly successful when they and their friends were between the ages of 5 and 8, when hand-eye coordination is excellent and the willingness to do adult-supervised activity is still a plus. more→
If you’re like us, you start the school year with enthusiastic plans to send your kids to school with lunches that are nutritious, affordable, and easy to make. You promise that you’ll plan ahead. You’ll put more effort into it. You’ll cut out the junk. But somehow mid-year finds us settled once again into our old lunch-making routine, frustrated and in search of fresh ideas. But don’t despair — here are some great tips on how to make fresh, waste-free nutritious school lunches fresh lunches. Try some of these ideas:
Getting tofu to taste great is simple when you have just the right recipes and tips. Here are easy tofu recipes for kids that the whole family will love. And if you’re ready for tofu to become a staple in your repertoire, explore our category Tofu Recipes: Easy and Versatile for lots more ideas.
Parents always welcome new options for healthy eating, and tofu is a superb food to add to the repertoire of growing children. It’s high in easily digestible protein, low in fat, and is a good source of calcium, iron, and B vitamins. more→
When my kids were really young, my idea of meal planning during those truly frantic days was to rush into the kitchen at six o-clock, thinking: “Quick! Cook the noodles!” Child-friendly pasta dishes are a great choice when you want dinner in a hurry and need to please adults and children.
Most varieties cook quickly enough to accommodate ravenous hunger, yet allow enough cooking time to prepare a simple sauce and a salad. It’s hard not to love pasta, and wonder of wonders, even kids will eat it — even if you have to leave the sauce you like off their portion and just add a little vegan buttery spread. more→
There is nothing cuter than watching your little one chase food around the highchair tray with her fingers, and seeing the sense of accomplishment in her face when a tiny little piece of food actually makes it her mouth. Here are ideas tips on healthy finger foods for babies, so that the entire process is much more than just cute — or messy!
When your baby is between eight and nine months old, you can begin to introduce finger foods to encourage your baby to begin self-feeding. It is very important that the texture of finger foods be very soft, so that your baby can “gum” the foods. To get food soft enough for gumming, many of them will need to be cooked. more→
More and more teenagers are choosing to go vegetarian or vegan. Both groups give up all meat, poultry, and fish; vegans also give up eggs and dairy. Whether vegetarian or vegan, nutrition for teens should be well planned. That said, it shouldn’t be complicated or daunting. Teens are often faced with pressures — pressures from parents concerned about their health, and pressures from within to continue on the path they have chosen. more→
The number of vegan kids has increased exponentially in recent years. Well-planned vegan diets are safe and offer health advantages, even for growing children. Talk to your practitioner and read up on the subject. Here are some practical tips for parents for dealing with everyday situations. Make sure to see the companion to this article by PCRM, The Vegetarian and Vegan Diet for Kids, as well as 10 Tips for Raising Vegan Children. Photo above: Pineapple Veggie Pita Bread Pizza by Vicki Brett-Gach.
School Lunches / Snacks
It would truly be a challenge to find a classroom where every student eats the same foods. Lactose intolerance, food allergies, ethnic preferences, and religious or dietary restrictions all influence food choices. The classroom can provide an opportunity to introduce students and teachers to healthy foods. Fresh fruit, veggies cut into fun shapes served with bean dip, muffins, and crackers spread with nut butter and fruit, are all healthy, delicious snacks. See lots more in VegKitchen’s Healthy School Lunch article. more→
Maintaining a vegan diet during pregnancy always seem to cause concern, but it can be done! Here are some tips and valuable information.
During pregnancy, your need for all nutrients increases. For example, you will need more calcium, more protein, and more folic acid. But calorie needs increase only modestly during pregnancy. In fact, you will need to pack all of that extra nutrition into just 300 extra calories a day. For that reason, all pregnant women need to choose their meals wisely. It is important to eat foods that are rich in nutrients, but not high in fat or sugar, or excessive in calories. more→
Here are lots of tasty options to explore for portable vegan sandwiches and wraps — easy ideas for vegans and vegetarians that are great for school lunches and for adults who are tired of pricey restaurant lunches and need some fresh brown bag vegan sandwiches and wraps options. You might also like 10 Easy Vegan Wraps to Make in 10 Minutes or Less. Shown above, Hummus, Cucumber, and Avocado Wrap; photo by Lori Maffei. more→
Raising vegan children in an omni world will test your patience with the next person who casually wonders aloud if your kids will get enough protein and calcium. Fear not though, it’s not as hard as it seems. In fact, with today’s increasing allergies, and people becoming more aware of what exactly they’re eating, it’s starting to become a piece of (vegan) cake. Janet Kearney is the founder of Vegan Pregnancy and Parenting and has given us some tips on raising vegan kids!
At Vegan Pregnancy and Parenting, I meet parents daily who are frustrated, feeling like they’re swimming against the tide. What’s key is support and information.
You’re expecting a baby — congratulations! Now’s a good time to take a good look at your eating habits. It’s more important than ever to give your baby the best start possible. because you’re eating for more than just yourself, and that’s a big responsibility.
It’s a good idea to eat five or six small meals throughout your day. That will help keep your energy levels at a constant, instead of the roller coaster of energy and fatigue that larger meals can trigger. It also helps to remember that, although you’re eating for more than just yourself, you’re not really eating for two. more→