fbpx

Raise Healthy Kids

23 High Protein Vegan Snacks for Kids After School

collage of dessert looking snacks that are vegan, super healthy, and high in protein for kids, great as an after school snack

23 High Protein Vegan Snacks for Kids After School

Everyday after school your kids need to eat, right? (*Hint – they need high protein vegan snacks!)

So, you give them a snack. Maybe it’s a piece of fruit, or something else.

After they’re done eating, maybe you have them do their homework or maybe they just relax from the school day, or maybe they have sports.

Well, if they’re still at home after snack; there’s a good chance they’ll end up saying ‘mom, I’m hungry’ 10 or 20 minutes after they eat their initial snack. Or, maybe it’s just my kids!

You tell them to wait for dinner; they say they can’t.

They end up eating whatever they can find in the kitchen because they are sooo hungry; their little snack (with little protein) didn’t fill them up.

The solution, which you probably already know:

Give them a healthy after school snack rich in protein!

AKA – a High Protein Vegan Snack.

This may mean the recipe contains nuts, seeds, nut butters, beans, or even tofu or quinoa!

The solution is not stocking up on processed food that won’t nourish your child, and only keep them coming back for more.

Empty calorie snacks won’t do them any good. They’ll simply trick their body into thinking they got nutrients, and then when it realizes it didn’t, that’s when they get hungry again.

Did you know that food companies engineer their food to be addictive and the FDA doesn’t do anything about it?! Crazy, right?

So, stop trusting food companies to have your childrens health in mind when making food, and start making their snacks yourself!

Many, if not all, of the snacks below can be made over the weekend and last all week! Go ahead and give them a try.

(You should know that some of the recipes below do require a food processor, not all of them do, but I honestly don’t know what I did before I had one, this is the one I have.)

 

 


Related Posts:

13 of the BEST After School Snacks for Kids

How to Stock Healthy Snacks at Home for Kids

130+ Healthy Snacks From A to Z


Want to Remember This? Pin 23 High Protein Vegan Snacks for Kids After School to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

collage of dessert looking snacks that are vegan, super healthy, and high in protein for kids, great as an after school snack

 

collage of dessert looking, high protein vegan snacks for kids to have after school to fill them up

23 High Protein Vegan Snacks for Kids After School

High Protein Vegan Snacks: Energy Bites and Bars (Great for On the Go Snacking!)

With ‘energy’ being right in their names (or most of their names) it’s an easy way to tell that they should help keep your child full til dinner!

If your child is in any type of sports or after school activity, these are also a great ‘on the go snack’!

 

pumpkin spice quinoa snack balls

Photo from happyhealthymama.com

I was in at ‘pumpkin spice’, my girls will know what Fall is all about, haha! Plus, adding quinoa to energy balls; brilliant!

 

APPLE CRISP ENERGY BITES

Photo from tasteandsee.com

Another fall favorite flavor!


Related Post: Apple Spice Energy Bites (the Perfect Energy Bites for Autumn)


LEARNING TO STIR + CRANBERRY COCONUT ENERGY BITES

Photo from wereparents.com

This post will help you include your little ones in the snack making process, along with having a yummy and filling end result!

 

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls (Gluten Free)

Photo from thesoccermomblog.com

 

Raw Nut Free Carrot Cake Balls

Photo from themultitaskingwoman.com

 

The Best Energy Bites Recipe of All Time

the best energy bites

 

no bake pumpkin spice energy bars

Photo from happyhealthymama.com

It’s the season for pumpkin spice everything. Share this contagious pumpkin spice time of year with them with some delicious and filling energy bars!

 

VEGAN FRUIT & OAT BARS (DAIRY, NUT, GLUTEN, EGG AND SUGAR-FREE)

Photo from foodmeanderings.com

You can’t go wrong with make ahead bars!

 

EASY 3-INGREDIENT HOMEMADE PROTEIN BAR RECIPE

Photo from inthekidskitchen.com

 

 

High Protein Vegan Snacks: Chocolate and Dessert-like Recipes

Ok, so maybe you’re wondering why there are dessert-like recipes on this list of healthy after school snacks focused on filling up your kids and stopping them from saying ‘mom, I’m hungry’.

Well, it just so happens that some desserts, even of the chocolate variety, can actually be healthy, filling, and count as a nutritious after school snack!

Thank goodness! Right!?!

Especially if the ingredients in those snacks are in themselves healthy or whole foods, like dates and nuts, instead of processed sugar.

Check out the recipes below and enjoy eating ‘better-for-you’ desserts without the guilt feeding your kids a healthy after school snack.

*Hint- if you don’t already have this, you may want to look into investing in one. You will NEED it to make some of the recipes below. Plus, it’ll help you make tons of other healthy treats, snacks, and even meals to feed your whole family. It’s the easiest way to make banana ice cream & vegan mac and cheese!

 

Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Brownies

Photo from rhiansrecipes.com

My 5 year old snuck a peek at this recipe while I was putting this post together and was perfectly ok with the secret ingredient that helps make these protein rich and chewy. Go check out this recipe and find out the secret ingredient!

 

chocolate bliss balls

Photo from happyhealthymama.com

The 5 ingredients for these have made it onto our grocery list, and currently I’m more excited to try these than my girls, but only because they don’t know, yet! It’s going to be like protein bar meet chocolate and energy balls (but way healthier, of course)!

 

Chocolate Chia Bliss Balls

Photo from theflavorbender.com

You can never have enough chocolate bliss balls, and this one has a fun colorful twist that may help your child want to eat them! (If the chocolate wasn’t enough of a reason!)

 

collage of dessert looking healthy high protein vegan after school snacks for kids

 

CHEWY CHOCOLATE PROTEIN BALLS WITH CARAMEL DRIZZLE

Photo from inthekidskitchen.com

 

Chocolate Coconut Protein Balls (Gluten Free & Dairy Free)

Photo from the thesoccermomblog

 

NO-BAKE PEANUT BUTTER BALLS (5-INGREDIENT)

Photo from gatheringdreams.com

 

MAKE VEGAN AND RAW LEMON BARS FOR A HEALTHY NO-BAKE DESSERT

Photo from foodal.com

Sure, these may look like cheesecake, and your kids may think they are getting away with eating something too sweet as an after school snack. But, it does have quite a bit of protein in it to help keep them full til dinner!

 

Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chickpea Chocolate Chip Cookies


Related Post: 10 Vegan Comfort Food Recipes My Kids Go Crazy For


Apple Sandwiches Recipe

Photo from thriftyjinxy.com

These look delicious, I’m sure my girls and your kids will love these (as long as they like peanut butter- or replace with nut butter of choice). My girls actually call a single apple slice with toppings on it an apple cookie and they eat them like they would cookies, too!

 

 

High Protein Vegan Snacks: Savory Snacks

If your child isn’t into sweet after school snacks and looking for something a little more savory, check out the recipes below, some are even traditional foods from other countries!

 

No Fry Black Gram-Kale Fritters/ Urad-Kale Appe / Black Gram-Kale Takoyaki

Photo from profusioncurry.com

Maybe it’s just me, but there’s an ingredient in this recipe that I had never heard of before, which is pretty neat! I’m not sure if it’s available in stores near me, or you, but Amazon does have it here. Psst…this is one of those snacks from another country, and will not only help you get more protein into your kids, but veggies, too!

 

Roasted Spiced Chickpeas

Photo from moneywisemoms.com

Do your kids like roasted chickpeas? Have they tried them? I can tell you right now that I’m making these this weekend to have my girls try! (We keep a stock of chickpeas in our kitchen at all times.)

High Protein Vegan Snacks: Dips

healthy fruit dip–4 ways

Photo from happyhealthymama.com

Maybe your kids are dippers; they’ll eat apples, but they prefer to have it with dip (or nutella). Check out these 4 healthy dip recipes that go great with apples and more!

 

VEGAN CHIPOTLE QUESO

Photo from vnutritionandellness.com

If your kids are still craving tortilla chips to munch on after school, prepare this cheesy vegan dip! It’s high in protein and Vitamin B12 (one of the most important nutrients to make sure you get enough of, if vegan.)

 

DELICIOUS DICED VEGGIE VEGAN BURRITOS

vegan burrito recipe

Use the burrito filling as a healthy, filling, tortilla dip.

 

Who says vegans don’t get enough protein in their diets?

Vegans not getting enough protein in their diets is simply a myth. (Probably to encourage people to keep eating food that supports farmers, or big businesses, or they simply don’t know any better. I won’t go further into this issue in this post…)

Plus, you don’t have to be raising a vegan child for them to enjoy these healthy snacks.

I hope you and your children enjoy these high protein vegan snacks, and you stop hearing ‘mom, I’m hungry’ everyday after snack and before dinner.

Let’s fill those little bellies up with some healthy protein filled snacks, that even a health nut of a mom can approve of!

 


Related Posts:

18 Healthy Recipes with Hidden Veggies for Kids

27 Healthy Smoothie Bowls and Smoothie Recipes for Kids

15 Healthy Halloween Treats for Kids!


Don’t forget to share these wonderful recipes with your friends who need snack ideas for their kids, too. Especially if they have picky eaters.

The dessert section of high protein vegan snacks above is bound to turn picky eaters into happy little kids with an empty plate in no time!

collage of dessert looking healthy high protein vegan after school snacks for kids

 

Raising Vegan Children: 6 Vital Questions Answered by a Nutritionist

 

vegan girl, raise vegan kids, healthy kids, common questions about vegan children

Raising vegan children, and veganism in general, is on the rise! (source)

And, with the rise of veganism, and parents raising their children vegan, there comes some concerns. From vegan parents themselves, along with those who have no business in the matter.

In this interview with Mary Ellen Valverde MS, CNS, LDN you will learn the answers to some of the most common concerns for feeding vegan children, or any child for that matter!


Related Posts:

The Best Food Bloggers to Follow for Healthy Kid Friendly Recipes!

How to Teach Children to Build a Healthy Plate

8 Steps to Raising a Vegan Child


Want to Remember This? Pin Raising Vegan Children: 6 Vital Questions Answered by a Nutritionist to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

vegan girl, raise vegan kids, healthy kids, common questions about vegan children

Raising Vegan Children: 6 Vital Questions Answered by a Nutritionist

My many thanks to Shawna for asking me to do a guest post and answer some reader questions. I love connecting with other vegans and enjoy helping people with nutrition on a plant-based diet.

 

What are the three most important things for parents to know when it comes to feeding their children?

I would say my top 3 suggestions would be:

  1. Expose children to a wide variety of foods at an early age and encourage them to try new things. This will widen their palate and not fill them with pre-judgements of any foods.
  1. Don’t make separate meals for parents and kids. It is fine to modify meals, such as leaving out spices (or something of that nature) but once a child is on solid foods, everyone should basically eat the same meal. This will help kids from being picky eaters and save the parents a whole lot of time and stress around meals.
  1. Lead by example! If they see their parents saying “I don’t like vegetables/beans/etc.” or refusing to eat the same thing as the rest of the family, children will think that’s acceptable and follow suit.

 

What should I do if my child outright refuses to eat what I made for breakfast/lunch/dinner? Should I make them a different meal so they at least eat something, or what would you suggest?

Children can refuse to eat for different reasons. Usually saying “no” is an act of independence; a way for them to have a voice and start their autonomy. For young children, refusing to eat is considered a normal part of their development and this phase will pass. They will eventually get over their food fears and unwillingness to try new foods (especially if the parents and older siblings are leading by example). I would suggest giving them space and allowing them to figure this out in their own time.

I wouldn’t suggest making a separate meal. By doing so you would be catering to the child in ways that might lead to problems down the line, like picky eating which can then lead to nutrient deficiencies. It also will put more demands/stress on the parent who has to prepare these separate meals. As I mentioned above, once the child is able to eat solid foods, she/he should be eating what the rest of the family eats.

As parents, it’s your job is to create opportunities to eat several times a day (based on your child’s age) so that the child can meet his/her appetite and nutritional needs. You should offer a well-balanced meal (see last question for more on this) and set a positive environment at mealtimes so that children enjoy coming to the table.

I also want to add that it is best not to interfere with a young child’s eating habits by way of using pressure, rewards, punishment or other ways to get your child to eat. By engaging in these things, you could prolong the picky eating and damage his/her developing relationship with food as well as erode the trust the child has in you as a supportive parent.

If your children are older and just doesn’t feel like eating what you’re making, they might want to have more of a say in what they’re eating. Having them offer input into meals can help. Even giving the option of “would you rather have brown rice or quinoa with dinner?” gives them a feeling of having a choice (even though both choices are healthy). I find the most successful meals especially for older kids are the “build your own” style. This can be done with tacos, bowls, salads, etc. Mealtimes can go over better with kids when they participate and have choices.

Having said all that, if you think your child still isn’t eating enough or is not currently in that “picky/independence” age, check a children’s growth chart which will indicate if they are growing at a normal pace. You can also refer to this food portion post. While it’s not vegan, it gives you a reference and shows the appropriate portions of food for a child’s age. If you find your child is not in the appropriate height or weight on the growth chart or is dropping foods from his/her diet without adding them back in at some point, see a nutrition professional or feeding therapist that specializes in childhood eating.

 

My child is starting school in the fall and their elementary school is nut free; do you have any nut-free school lunch ideas that are nutritious?

Many schools are now nut-free but creating a healthy lunch that is vegan and nut free can be done. Below are a few ideas of “main” parts of the meal. You could also add in some fruit, low sugar granola, homemade trail mix, protein balls (with seed butter instead of nut butter) or a dairy-free (low sugar) yogurt to snack on as their “dessert”.

  • Veggie wrap, pita, or sandwich. Some options are:
    • Vegan deli slices, spinach, avocado, tomato and carrot shreds
    • Eggless salad (use tofu instead of eggs)
    • Chickpea salad (mashed chickpeas, celery, carrots, lemon juice, spices, vegan mayo)
    • Sunbutter (or other seed butter) and jelly
    • Sunbutter & banana rolls (spread butter on a tortilla, top with thinly sliced bananas, roll it up & cut)
    • Hummus & veggie sandwich (use different flavored hummus and their favorite sliced/shredded veggies)
    • Mashed bean and avocado rolls (mash beans and avocado on a tortilla, add a few veggies, roll up & cut)
    • Baked tofu sandwiches with veggies and their favorite sauce/dressing
  • Hummus with dipping veggies
  • Veggie burgers or nuggets
  • Pasta salad (can sub in chickpea or lentil pasta to make it healthier) with beans and veggies
  • Vegan grilled cheese sandwich or quesadilla (add in veggies like fresh spinach)
  • Bean, brown rice, veggie & vegan cheese burrito
  • Vegan quesadilla with beans & veggies
  • Rice or quinoa salad using their favorite veggies
  • Leftovers they enjoyed from the night before
  • Bagel or rice cakes with tofu cream cheese or hummus and thinly sliced fruit or veggies
  • Smoothies
  • Nutritious soups
  • Pita or bagel pizza with vegan cheese

*If you’re using vegan cheese, be sure to get brands that do not use nuts.

 

Do kids need to eat on a strict schedule, or is it alright if they simply eat when they are hungry and graze throughout the day when our schedule allows it?

I would say it is better for them to eat when they are hungry, particularly when they are young/toddlers. It helps them to become attuned to the need to eat. When they are just starting out on solid foods, you could introduce a variety of finger foods in front of them that have a variety of tastes such as a few berries, piece of apple, and mashed beans which will encourage them to be more adventurous in their eating and to try different foods without pressure.

For older children, I would say it’s also okay to have them eating when they are hungry, especially if they’re active in sports and have to be on different schedules. This will give them the energy and nutrients they need for an active life even if their schedule doesn’t allow for strict mealtimes. That said, you don’t want kids overeating or grazing on foods because they are bored. If they’re not very active, I’d stick to mostly mealtimes (using your judgement) especially if you see them looking for snacks because there’s “nothing else to do”. This can lead to weight issues which are becoming more prevalent in our society. You want to instill good eating habits as early as possible.  

 

How do I know what to feed my kids on a daily basis? With so much information available online, it’s hard to pick through and know what to trust.

I hear you about all the information online. It can get very confusing and frustrating. If you’re looking for nutrition advice, I’d look on the site’s “about me” page to see the person’s credentials. You want someone with at least a bachelor’s or master’s degree in nutrition. The word “certified” doesn’t mean much since people can get a certification after a 3 week course but “licensed” is a good word to look for because states have specific education and examination requirements. A CNS (Certified Nutrition Specialists) or RD (Registered Dietician) are both high nutrition credentials.

As for what to feed kids on a daily basis, well rounded meals with a focus on veggies is a great place to start. Try to have them eat a good mix of macronutrients (carbs, protein and fat) at each meal along with a large portion of colorful vegetables for their phytonutrients.

For a breakfast option, they could have a smoothie with their favorite fruit, a plant-based protein powder, dairy-free milk and some nut/seed butter (depending on any allergies they might have). You could add some greens to the smoothie as well (spinach and baby kale are the ones that don’t really change the taste of the smoothie). Don’t forget breakfast doesn’t always need to look like a traditional American breakfast of eggs with bacon and toast. Heated healthy leftovers can be a great breakfast…and kids often think it’s fun to switch things up.

For lunch or dinner they could have a veggie burger or tofu nuggets, a side of their favorite veggies with a tasty sauce/dressing and maybe some chickpea pasta or brown rice. Having salad as a side or starter is a great way to get more veggies in and get kids used to eating it.

Bowls are a great way to ensure the whole family is getting their macronutrients. For a healthy bowl you would choose a whole grain or starchy vegetable (brown rice, quinoa, sweet potato, winter squash), add a protein (beans, tofu, nuts, seeds, peas, seitan), add veggies (maybe even have them choose so they are already agreeing on what they’ll eat) and top it with a dressing or sauce of choice. The fat portion can be: a part of the dressing/sauce if it’s made with a fat, a bit of high-quality olive oil, some avocado, ground flax seeds, or a small handful of nuts/seeds. Bowls are an easy way to put a meal together and can be so versatile. You can make all sorts of combinations using different veggies, proteins and sauces. I’ve done Mexican bowls, Italian bowls, Asian-inspired bowls – whatever cuisine the family is in the mood for that night!

Shawna also has some great “Healthy Plate Templates” so take a look at those!

Click to grab these Templates!

 

How can I tell if my child is getting enough protein and other nutrients they need? We eat mostly vegan, and lately I’ve only been able to get my kids to eat beans (chickpeas) when I bake them in cookies!

Those cookies sound good!

I would suggest looking at a growth chart to see how the child is doing physically. Going to get a checkup and do blood work each year can also be a good way to ensure the child is having adequate nutrients. You can check out my other post on some vitamins/minerals that vegans should keep an eye on. If your child is low on the growth chart, is feeling extra tired, or getting sick more often than those around him/her, look into seeing a nutritionist or physician that specializes in vegan child nutrition. Please note that most doctors do not get much nutrition education in school so unless they did extra education outside of school, a nutrition specialist working with your doctor is the way to go.

In general, if you can stick to the macronutrient info that I mentioned in the above question and having a good multivitamin can help with any other nutrients they’re not getting from food, your child should be getting the nutrients they need.

Protein is always the most concerning nutrient on a plant-based diet. Beans can be hard for some kids but it depends on what age group you’re dealing with. Once on solid foods, well-cooked beans (especially white beans) can make a great finger food that most babies will enjoy for their mild taste and soft texture. Just make sure to purchase BPA-free cans or tetra packs and rinse the beans to get rid of excessive sodium.

Once kids get older and have heard something like “beans are gross” it might be harder to get them to eat beans outright. A few ways to incorporate them would be to add them to soups (blended beans can make things “creamier”), veggie burgers or nuggets, dips/sauces, muffins, in vegan quesadillas, or roasted (like roasted chickpeas). Some beans are more appealing than others to certain people. Try offering kids all different kinds and see if they take to any (lentils, white beans, and chickpeas might be the easiest to “sell”. Tofu (always buy organic) and seitan can also be a good option for protein if the kids are not yet into beans. Even if they’re not loving beans right now, keep trying – they really are a very healthy food.

Another thing to mention is that there are a number of meat alternatives available in many supermarkets or can be ordered online. While whole foods are always best, kids are going to want “fun” foods no matter if they’re eating meat or not so don’t worry about giving them some of the meat alternatives every once in a while. I’ve listed some of my favorite alternatives to animal-based products in my Vegan Products and Resource post.

In wrapping up this post, I’d just like to say do your best but don’t overly stress unless you feel there is something really wrong (you know your kids better than anyone) and in that case, seek out a professional.

Stay positive and lead by example. You’ve got this!

The Best Food Bloggers to Follow for Healthy Kid Friendly Recipes!

food blogger, kid friendly recipes, making food for kids

The Best Food Bloggers to Follow for Healthy Kid Friendly Recipes!

Have you ever tried to healthy recipes online that your kids will actually eat? It can be tough! There are so many websites, beautiful images of food on Pinterest (that seem impossible to recreate), and then if your child scrolls through Pinterest with you; they’re probably going to pick out all of the ‘unicorn’ or ‘mermaid’ colored desserts! Finding healthy kid friendly recipes can be a challenge!

That is why I put together this list of amazing food bloggers who create healthy recipes.

Most of the food bloggers below are moms who understand the struggles of getting our kids to eat healthy.

Some have recipes that even my picky eater won’t deny!

All are focused on healthy kid friendly foods. (Even if that wasn’t their intention.)


Sign up for this FREE 4 week ecourse to simplify mealtime!


Related Posts:

28 Healthy Toddler Meal Ideas (with Recipes)

12 deliciously healthy kid friendly breakfast recipes for easy school mornings

130+ Healthy Snacks From A to Z


Want to Remember This? Pin The Best Food Bloggers to Follow for Healthy Kid Friendly Recipes! to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

food blogger, kid friendly recipes, making food for kids

The amazing food bloggers below have so much to offer!

They come from different backgrounds, have different food preferences, allergies, and have to work around what they (or their kids) can eat, to come up with the recipes that they share with the rest of us.

So, whether your child will eat anything and everything, are picky eaters, have celiac disease, or allergies that you’ve been trying to buy or make food around; these bloggers below know what it’s like and will feel like a lifesaver when trying to figure out what to feed your kids!

Go check out their recipes!!

 

Strength and Sunshine

Meet Rebecca

food blogger with kid friendly recipes

“At Strength and Sunshine, I help families with celiac disease and food allergies navigate the free-from lifestyle with ease by providing delicious gluten-free, top allergen-free, plant-based recipes the entire family will love. Food and cooking can still be easy, fun, and healthy and I’m here to show you how through my recipes, tips, and celiac disease/food allergy coaching!

Rebecca started Strength and Sunshine in 2013 as an outlet to share her knowledge and recipes for those with celiac disease and food allergies. She was diagnosed with celiac disease 10+ years ago, as well as navigates other food allergies, like soy, and autoimmune conditions. She holds a BS in Public Health and has a mission to make free-from living easier, wholesome, and delicious no matter the dietary restriction!”

Find her recipes here!

 

This Healthy Kitchen

Meet Rosa

food blogger with kid friendly recipes

“Hi, I’m Rosa! I’m a mom of 2 young boys and always looking to create new and exciting family meals, while maintaining a healthy and balanced diet. I was born into an Italian household, so cooking is practically in my blood. Although fluent in Italian cooking, I love to experiment with different types of cuisines. My primary focus is on healthy recipes suitable for the entire family.  Mostly plant based, and all under 400 calories per serving, with the occasional cheat day, of course!”

Find her recipes here!

 

Wee Little Vegans

Meet Melissa

“I’m  Melissa, the mother and creator behind Wee Little Vegans, a site dedicated to helping you raise a vibrant and healthy vegan family. On the site you’ll find tons of kid tested and approved recipes, as well as links to resources to keep you and your littles eating well and thriving – all without meat, eggs, dairy and animal by products.”

Find her recipes here!

 

 

 

 

Healthy Little Foodies

Meet Amy

“Healthy Little Foodies is a site packed with healthy family-friendly recipes as well as finger food ideas for babies, toddlers and the lunchbox.

Amy, a Mum of two boys (age 4 & 7), is the recipe developer, writer and photographer of the site. She is dedicated to sharing recipes that are packed with fruit and veggies, low in salt and have no refined sugar.

Amy has a degree in Food Science and for several years she worked in the food industry developing new products for the leading UK supermarkets. She also has a Post Graduate Diploma in Education and worked as a primary school teacher until her eldest was born. Now she combines her experience of both jobs, in addition to her experience raising two children, to help parents raise their own Healthy Little Foodies.”

Find her recipes here!

Other Food Blogs with Kid Friendly Recipes

I love all of the food blogs above, and so do my girls! But, there are other food blogs focused on healthy recipes for kids, too. So, to give you even more options, and to help you find other food bloggers to drool over their delicious food follow and try out their healthy, for you and your kids; here are some more that I hand picked!

Weelicious

“Weelicious offers fast fresh and easy recipes for the entire family with over 1500 recipes, over 500 cooking videos, feeding tips and ideas to make kids great eaters from day one.”

Find their recipes here!

 

The Pretty Bee

Kelly from The Pretty Bee focuses on creating allergy friendly recipes for the whole family. And, believe me, you won’t miss anything with her recipes; they may be allergy friendly, but they don’t taste like it! She has even sorted all her recipes based on allergies, so if you or your child has a specific allergy, just look under that section under ‘Sort by Allergen’ in the Recipe Menu!

My girls are actually obsessed with one of her waffle recipes, and won’t let me use any other recipe for waffles!

Find all her recipes here!

 

The Healthy Family and Home

I first found Karielyn’s food blog because of her Healthy Peanut Butter Cups. Yep, the chocolate brought me in, and the focus on clean eating kept me coming back for more! She has a huge assortment of recipes suited for all different types of diets, not fad diets, the regular kind, such as; vegan, vegetarian, paleo, gluten free, lectin free, and more!

Find all their recipes here!

 

Vegan Insanity

Cassie from Vegan Insanity is dedicated to making healthy and delicious vegan recipes for all to enjoy! I’ve been following her blog and recipes for a few years now. But, I just took a look at the front page of her site and am already seeing new recipes that I’m adding to my meal plan right now to try making this next week, like her 3 Ingredient Vegan Gnocchi recipe.

Find all her recipes here!

 

Karrisa’s Vegan Kitchen

If you can’t guess by the name of the blog, the food bloggers name is Karrisa, and she creates delicious vegan recipes. I’ve even features some of her recipes in other posts on my site which are focused on healthy food for kids, such as: 12 HEALTHY VEGAN SCHOOL LUNCH IDEAS

Find all her recipes here!

 

A Few More Food Blogs Focused on Healthy Eating for Kids

In case you want a few more food blogs to check out that cater to healthy food for kids, with recipes created by parents who knows what it’s like to feed kids, here are few more!

Know Your Produce

Just What We Eat

My Kids Lick the Bowl

Tiny Tummy Tales

My Fussy Eater


Sign up for this FREE 4 week ecourse to simplify mealtime!


So Many Food Bloggers and Resources!

There are so many more food bloggers that you can find online, either by searching on Google or browsing Pinterest. Trust me, I have barely scraped the surface!!

It may even seem a tad bit overwhelming with the amount of delicious, and healthy, recipes available online, and maybe you don’t know where to start.

Start with one of the food bloggers above, maybe one catches your eye, or you’re looking for specific types of recipes and one of them creates it; take your time going through their recipes, one by one, and try them for yourself, and of course have your kids try them, too!

When you start digging through their recipes, I’d love to know which healthy kid friendly recipe you chose to try first! Leave a comment to let me know!

 

How to Get Kids to Eat Vegetables: 12 Different Ways!

peas in a pod, getting kids to eat more vegetables

How to Get Kids to Eat Vegetables: 12 Different Ways!

We all know that veggies are good for us and our children. It’s one of the first foods we give our children as babies, in baby food, along with fruits and baby cereal. But, once they become toddlers it can be difficult to get them to eat veggies, and parents will often ask How to Get Kids to Eat Vegetables now?

Which veggies for kids do we try to even start with now?


GET EVEN MORE PICKY EATER TIPS WHEN YOU SIGN UP TO RECEIVE THESE FREE PRINTABLES!!


**Disclaimer: I am not a registered dietitian or a professional nutritionist. I simply believe in eating well for people of all ages, and I believe that a whole foods plant based diet is eating well, whereas processed foods are not.

It was so simple back then when they were babies, right?

And, for some reason we forget how easy it was to get veggies into their diets; especially when our kids start being more independent and trying to choose what they eat all by themselves!

But, there are a few options to choose from when trying to help, or guide, your kids’ eating habits to those veggies you know are good for them!

Options for “How do you get kids to eat veggies?”

You could explain to them how important veggies are for them to grow healthy and strong.

Or, if they’re still young, you could just sneak the veggies into their food and avoid the ‘I don’t want to eat it’ fight, all together!

Then, explain to them, when they’re older that they actually do like the veggies!

Don’t forget to show them how you hid their veggies in their food, so they know how to do it themselves. But, you may want to wait to tell them this until they understand the importance of eating veggies, and will eat them willingly. Such as, what vitamins and minerals they contain and what would happen to them if they didn’t get a certain nutrient.

(And, you might want to expect for them to be a little irritated by your tactics, but don’t worry; they’ll thank you when they’re older and living on their own…hopefully!)

If you would rather have the fight with them every day, several times a day, about eating their veggies; go right ahead! It’s up to you!

I tend to do half and half with my two little girls. Half the time I hide my girls veggies, half the time they’re right there in the open on their plates. Can you guess which ones they eat first!?

Other Ways to Get Kids to Eat More Vegetables WITHOUT Hiding Them

If you’re dead set against hiding veggies in your childs food, you could try:

  • turning their veggie options into a rainbow (and challenge them to eat the rainbow everyday)
  • season their veggies, some kids don’t like them plain
  • experiment with roasted, raw, steamed veggies, or you could even turn the veggies into a sauce
  • have your kids help you in the kitchen
  • have them try ‘just one bite’
  • make veggies fun
  • add veggies as a side to a favorite meal
  • let them know that their favorite character loves veggies and trying new things
  • reverse psychology (tell them ‘not’ to eat it- learn more about this method here)

I am sure there are many more ideas for what you can do to get your child to eat veggies, but let’s get on to how to add veggies to food to actually help get veggies into your childs diet; whether or not they think they will like them!


Related Posts:

18 Healthy Recipes with Hidden Veggies for Kids

A Stupid-Simple Way to Get Toddlers to Eat Veggies

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE ON HOW TO GET KIDS TO EAT VEGETABLES


Want to Remember This? Pin How to Get Kids to Eat Vegetables: 12 Different Ways! to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

carrots, get kids to eat veggies, get kids to eat vegetables, picky eaters, kids eat carrots

12 Different Ways to Get Veggies into Your Childs Diet

The best way to ensure your child is getting enough veggies is by adding them to food your child already loves. These foods may show that that the veggies are in them, and some may hide the veggies!

1. Start with Smoothies!

I love smoothies! I got a nutribullet almost 4 and a half years ago and have used it practically everyday since!

My girls also love to have what I’m having!

Even if they have the same exact food in front of them; they want my food.

So, instead of getting upset that I can never eat my own food, or drink my own drinks; I double the food, or in this case drink, and just share it with them!

Win-win; I get to actually have some of my smoothie, and I get tons of fruits, veggies, and healthy fats and proteins, into my girls!

You can put so many amazing things in smoothies, and adding in certain veggies won’t really alter the taste too much.

My girls will drink my all time favorite smoothie without a second thought! And, I put in at least half a cup of squished down spinach in it!

They love it!

If you want to really hide the veggies, using a green leafy veggie may not be your best choice. They tend to turn the whole smoothie green.

I’d recommend adding in softened beets, or another softened veggie that has the same color as the fruits in it. Unless of course, if it’s St Patrick’s Day, then go right ahead and keep it green and tell them a leprechaun did it!!

Find out why else you need a nutribullet and what other things you can do with it, in my posts below!!

27 Healthy Smoothie Bowls and Smoothie Recipes for Kids

10 Reasons You Need a Nutribullet as a Mom

10 Amazingly Healthy Things You Can Make with a Nutribullet 

 

2. Popsicles

If your kids love popsicles, whether in the summertime like most people do, or in the winter time like my girls do; you can certainly make your own and add in veggies!

It’s much better for them this way, even without the veggies! It’s always best to have complete control over what ingredients go into your kids food!

In fact, I usually make popsicles from the smoothie recipe above! It’s as simple as making a smoothie, adding it to a popsicle mold, and then leaving it in the freezer over night.

You could be as creative, or as lazy, with this as you want. If you’re kids don’t get offended with you adding veggies into these, they could even help make them!

 

3. Pancakes

Whether you want a sweet or savory breakfast, you can do so by adding in veggies!

You’re kids may not even notice a difference! (Depending on which veggies you add in.)

The pancake recipes I usually make for my kids, I thought were pretty healthy; until I came across the recipe below!

See, I usually add fruit to my girls pancakes; like bananas, and apples or blueberries. But, the thing is, I can get my girls to eat fruit plain, and anytime during the day. They love fruit, and if I ask them what they want for snacks; 9 times out of 10, it’s going to be a piece of fruit!

So, adding in a veggie, like sweet potatoes, instead of bananas is just brilliant! It’s still going to be sweet, but add in different nutrients.

In the recipe below, the sweet potato takes the place of eggs in the pancakes, which in my eyes makes them way healthier. It takes the cholesterol and saturated fat right out of them; and adds in healthy carbs, vitamins, and minerals. Yay!

Check it out:

Sweet potato pancakes recipe!


 

4. Waffles

Like pancakes, you can also make waffles with different veggie ingredients.

Take the recipe below for example. Those waffles won’t only give you more energy through out the morning from the extra nutrients from the pumpkin, it also just looks pretty!

Of course, what the waffles look like will depend on your waffle maker. Mine will have a spiderman spider imprint on it…always. Get it here to have some superhero fun at breakfast with your kids; they may even enjoy what you make with it more, simply because of the way it looks!

Check out the recipe:

Pumpkin waffles recipe

 

5. Muffins

Who doesn’t love muffins!

Both my girls are big fans of muffins, as am I! Hmmm….I wonder where they get that from….

But, in all seriousness, I make a couple dozen of muffins a month and keep them in my freezer for snacks or quick breakfasts. Or, early breakfasts, when we’re starving and wake up too early to think about what we want, or I just don’t feel like making anything.

And, I have a few go to muffin recipes. The two recipes below are always made every couple of months, along with my blueberry muffin recipe and/or a chocolate chip muffin recipe. We have to have some sort of balance; one muffin focused on fruits or veggies, and then one that is super sweet and healthy!

Try out this Chocolate Zucchini Muffins Recipe; the chocolate will hide the fact that there’s even a vegetable in it, plus make it super moist and delicious!

And, we absolutely love this Sweet potato muffins recipeBy the way, the recipes on this site are amazing, whenever I search for some healthy and vegan dessert, his recipes always come up; I try them, and I’m always super impressed by the outcome! I don’t know why I get so surprised by this anymore, I’ve been coming across his recipes for almost 2 years now!!

 

6. Breads

Vegan Pumpkin Bread

Kids love bread, or at least my kids love bread, especially when it’s banana bread, pumpkin, or even zucchini bread.

And, what’s not to love! It’s moist, delicious, and you don’t even taste the zucchini; perfect for feeding our picky eaters who claim to ‘hate’ veggies, or think they’re ‘disgusting’!

You could even make chocolate zucchini bread using the muffin recipe above! You may need to add some extra time for it to fully bake, though. The time, in general, just needs to be doubled. It’s usually about 20 minutes for muffins and 40 minutes for ‘quick’ bread, at the same temperature. Just check it with a fork or toothpick to make sure it’s done!

 

7. Cakes

Just like breads, you can include veggies in cakes, too!

Ever heard of carrot cake?

Just cut the sugar in half if you can, and maybe make some other substitutions to make it a bit healthier. As parents, we don’t need our kids to have any more sugar than absolutely necessary for the cake to taste good.

When searching through recipes, I tend to find that I can easily cut the sugar in half, or even replace it with maple syrup to make it even healthier, and less harmful for our kids.

You could even take a bread recipe, cook it in a cake pan instead and add some frosting or icing to it. Do this with carrot cake, or a zucchini bread/muffin recipe. What kid is going to turn down cake?!

It’s kind of amazing how many different types of food we can make with the same recipe, simply by changing the shape and baking time!

 

8. Cookies (yes, I said cookies!!)

Cookies for breakfast!! And, no I’m not talking about Cookie Crisp; that cereal is horrible for you!

I’m talking healthy, nutrient filled, cookies for breakfast.

The kind that has some fiber, vitamins, and minerals to them.

The kind that you’re kids will ask you for in the morning, simply because they want to get away with eating cookies for breakfast!

Cookies that even you will approve for them to eat first thing when they wake up! Go ahead, and try out the ones below!

Pumpkin cookies recipe.

Carrot cookies recipe. 

Zucchini cookies recipe.

 

9. Banana Ice cream

vegan ice cream recipes
Photo from stresslessbehealthy.com

Call it monster ice cream and add some spinach to home made banana ice cream, or completely hide it in chocolate peanut butter banana ice cream!

Either way, I find it hard that a child wouldn’t eat this; unless they’re just entirely against any type of cold treat, or despise bananas!

For the chocolate version; simply cut up a few bananas and freeze them for a few hours, or overnight. When they’re frozen, blend them with some soy milk (or milk of your choice), add in some peanut butter (or almond butter), some cocoa, spinach, and a drop or two of vanilla (optional) and blend!

If they like it extremely soft serve; use a nutribullet. If they like it thick; use a food processor. Or, you could always use a regular blender, but I honestly don’t even own a regular blender. So, I’m not sure on how it’ll turn out.

 

10. Home Made Vegan MAC

There seems to be a lot of ideas on this list about getting veggies into our kids through their snacks and sweet breakfasts, so I’m going to try to add in some actual meals for lunches or dinners!

So, for a lunch or a dinner, you could really hide veggies into this mac and cheese recipe. It’s just like macaroni and cheese, but a super food powered version (and without the cheese)! It’s from Vegan Insanity, and my girls actually beg me for this, and they’re 2 and 5 years old. If I use the small shell pasta to make this, my older daughter calls it the mac and cheese from Panera.

Vegan Cauliflower Mac & Cheese recipe.

 

11. Home made fries (call them french fries)

Craving fast food or something sweet, but don't want to ruin your healthy eating streak? Learn how to make these healthy and simple sweet potato fries! These homemade fries simply bake in your oven, and are toddler and kid approved. Check out this 3 ingredient recipe now, and save yourself from eating something you'd rather not eat! #sweetpotatofries #sweetpotatorecipes #veganrecipes #healthyrecipes #stresslessbehealthy

One food that your kids may actually eat without even having to sneak in the veggie, are fries.

If your kids are used to eating out, or love the occasional fast food trip; then they probably love french fries.

And, sure, french fries when from fast food chains or restaurants, aren’t all that great for you. But, what if you made them. At home. In your oven. With real ingredients! It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, time consuming, or difficult!

I make fries at home all the time for my girls, myself, and my husband, and no one complains that they’re eating veggies! Use white potatoes, or red, purple, or even sweet potatoes; it doesn’t matter! Or, if you want to try something really different, make them with eggplants or zucchini!

 

12. Pizza

snacks that start with k, letter k snacks, alphabet snacks, snacks for kids, healthy snacks, healthy snacks for kids

Pizza is a little different than other foods you can hide veggies in; the veggies tend to be a bit more noticeable on the top of pizza. Unless you eat cheese, like the majority of people in this country do; then you can go ahead and hide the veggies underneath the cheese. But, they’ll probably show through anyways.

Or, go ahead and make eggplant or zucchini mini pizzas! My two year old is a huge fan of these; they’re a little more her size!

 

Note on Hiding Vegetables in a Childs’ Food

I know there is controversy on whether or not you should hide veggies for kids. There’s certainly pros and cons to doing it.

Pros:

  • kids get the vitamins and minerals they need and maintain optimal health
  • if they don’t know they’re eating veggies, they can’t get mad at you for feeding them veggies

Cons:

  • they could get mad at you when they find out they are eating veggies
  • they don’t learn to love veggies on their own

All in all, it’s really up to you, what you choose to do for your kids; you can certainly use the recipes above whether you want to hide veggies in your kids meals or not. It’s going to depend a lot on you and your child and how they’re prepared.

I would highly recommend to not hide food if your child is a pre-teen or teenager.

They’re old enough to understand the importance, as long as you teach them about it!

Don’t just rely on your childs school to teach them about nutrition; good chance you’ll be disappointed in how little is actually taught. Plus, the older they get, the more independent they will want to be; they should get a choice for what goes into their body. But, you, as the parent, need to teach them how it will affect their minds and bodies; they won’t know unless they are taught!

If your child is little still, like 5 and under, and they ‘don’t like’ veggies because someone else said they don’t like veggies, then hiding them in other foods, at first, may be beneficial. Then, just make sure to explain to them how yummy those veggies actually are, and that they already eat them, they just don’t notice.

Make sure you eat veggies in front of them, as well. Otherwise they won’t want them if you’re not eating them; be a good example for your kids with your  eating habits!

My 5 year old has been at a stage lately where she thinks about 50% of the food I give her is disgusting, so believe me, I get it! It’s hard to get kids to eat what we want them to. Whether it’s making sure they get enough veggies, or protein; it can sometimes be a real struggle.

So, take the food ideas from above and use them to your advantage; either in the way I suggested, or in your own way!

If you found How to Get Kids to Eat Vegetables: 12 Different Ways! useful, please share Facebook and save on Pinterest; or comment below with more suggestions or your thoughts on sneaking veggies into food for kids!

 

veggies for kids
Photo from stresslessbehealthy.com
Don’t forget to grab even more tips to help you get your kids to eat veggies HERE!!
veggies for kids

How to Eat Healthy on a Road Trip with Kids

car on mountain, driving long distance, road trip, road trip with kids, how to eat on a road trip, where to eat on a road trip

How to Eat Healthy on a Road Trip with Kids

Have you just started eating healthy…again? And, are about to go on a road trip with your family and are wondering ‘how in the world am I to get my family to eat healthy on a road trip?’

Well, good news;

You’re not alone!

Going on a road trip, with or without kids, can make eating healthy seem almost impossible!

You don’t have access to your kitchen, fridge, or freezer; so it’s easy to see some of the challenges that lay ahead of you as you take off on your adventure with your family.

But, just because you can’t make green smoothies or roast vegetables in the oven, doesn’t mean you have to stop at every fast food place you see, or stock up on processed snack foods for the ride!

There’s a way to still eat healthy on the road, despite what your family is trying to convince you of!

 


Related Posts:

The Complete Cross Country Road Trip Packing List (with kids)!

Basics of Healthy Eating: Do’s and Don’ts | Healthy Eating Tips

How to Start Eating Healthy Again (after getting off track)


Want to Remember This? Pin How to Eat Healthy on a Road Trip with Kids to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

map for a road trip, road trips wit kids, where to eat on a road trip, eating healthy on a road trip

8 Tips for Eating Healthy on a Road Trip with Kids

I’m not going to tell you that eating healthy on a road trip is easy.

You have to plan and prepare for it, just like you do for any other part of your trip.

But, the benefits of eating healthy on a road trip will far outweigh the negatives of relying on fast food or eating at any restaurant you happen to pass by on the road.

Some of the benefits are:

  • not starving on the road and keeping your eyes peeled for the next place to eat
  • energy to stay awake and drive, or keep the driver company
  • not feeling horrible or having an upset stomach from not eating well
  • no hangry passengers
  • less cranky kids, because they are eating like normal and aren’t having any extra sugar or processed foods
  • being able to save your money for ‘fun things’, not just food
  • not feeling bloated from eating out
  • and I’m sure there are more!

Check out the tips below to help you reap some of the benefits above!

 

Cut up fresh fruit and veggies

This is the first thing that comes to my mind when thinking about going on a road trip and trying to eat healthy, especially if it’s summer time!

There are so many delicious fruits in season in the summer time. And, bringing cut up fruits and veggies for everyone to munch on in the car, or at rest stops, sure beats processed snack foods!

Plus, they’ll help keep everyone hydrated on the trip, which is super important, and many people may not even think about staying hydrated on a car trip.

So, do yourself and family a favor and fill some containers with cut up fruits and veggies, store them in a cooler, and eat those instead of chips or crackers in the car!

Some easy suggestions:

  • grapes
  • bananas
  • strawberries
  • cuties
  • apples
  • any kind of melon
  • pineapple
  • cucumber
  • baby carrots
  • celery sticks
  • and more!

Whether you’re trying to eat healthy, or not, you can’t go wrong with bringing fruit and veggies!

 

Pack sandwiches, or picnic like meals, for when you stop

If you’re able to, pack sandwiches, sandwich ingredients, or other food that is easy to make or eat at rest stops.

Pretend it’s a picnic and pack like that!

This way you have control over what food you and your family eats. And, you can bring any special foods that any of your family members need, say for example, if they have allergies or an intolerance to certain foods; you can account for that and pack accordingly.

 

Bake healthy treats, prepare your own trail mix, and prepare other healthy food, at home to bring with you

Just because you want to eat healthy on your road trip, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get to snack!

Bake some healthy treats with whole ingredients before you leave and package them up so they’ll stay good the whole trip, or at least the first couple of days.

This could be healthy muffins, brownies with a hidden protein source, home made granola, fruit, or cereal bars, or more!

Make your own trail mix to bring, or other healthy food that will stay good in the car. Make sure to bring little bags or containers if you don’t portion everything out at home.

There’s really a ton of options, just choose something that you know your family will love. Something they’ll love so much that they won’t even want to eat out!

 

Avoid eating at fast food restaurants, or other restaurants, by stopping at a grocery store, instead

Even if you plan ahead and bring healthy food with you on a road trip there’s the chance that you may run out of food, depending on how long your trip is.

Unfortunately, some food will only last so long in the car; you can’t expect fresh fruit to last more than a day or so.

So, instead of stopping at the next fast food place, or restaurant, you see when you get hungry; find a grocery store instead.

Even if it’s a grocery store you don’t like, it’s sure to have healthier options, and cheaper prices, than eating out.

You won’t be able to make all the food you did before leaving home. So, you’ll have to look for more convenient options, such as pre cut fruits and veggies, and more ingredients for picnic like meals.

But, you’ll feel so much better doing this and after eating your healthy food, than you would if you went out to eat. Not to mention the amount of money you’ll save, and the headache you won’t get from the kids complaining of belly aches!

Get this list of 11 tips for eating healthy on road trips sent straight to your inbox!

Bring a pack of bottled water

You need to stay hydrated when on the road. Well, at all times really, but a lot of people forget to stay hydrated while driving.

Luckily, the best thing to keep you hydrated is also the cheapest and least messy; it’s water.

So, go ahead and grab a large pack of bottle water to bring on the trip!

Or, if you’re really trying to save money and reduce waste; bring your own water bottle and buy gallons of water to refill your  water bottle when you stop.

You could always do a combination of both, too. Fill your water bottle when you stop, but if you run out of water before you stop, use the bottled water.

Whatever works for you and your family

 

Plan your meals and snacks ahead of time

Like mentioned at the beginning, you need to plan the food you eat on the road just as you’re planning all other aspects of your trip, maybe even more so.

Unfortunately, meal planning for a road trip is a bit different than meal planning for a regular week at home.

You have to account for:

  • not having a freezer with you
  • the heat in the car if traveling in the summer
  • the size of your cooler
  • the amount of space you have available for food
  • how long things will last, which will determine the order you need to eat the food in

You also need to know whether or not everyone will get to eat inside the car, or if you’ll have to stop every time you need to eat.

I know if we ever take a long road trip in my husbands car, he’d want us to stop to eat so the kids don’t make a mess in his car with food. However, I also know that would change through out the trip as we try to make good timing and our sanity can only take so much when it comes to kids whining in the backseat that they’re hungry.

So, whether you decide to let everyone eat in the car right off the bat, or are ‘dead set’ on no one eating in the car; be sure to plan some food that doesn’t make a mess, or at least much of a mess!

 

Eat at the same times you usually do, unless the kids are asleep

I don’t know how your road trips are, but when we go on road trips, we’re usually up quite early and stay up quite late trying to make good timing on where we’re going.

This may require a little extra food for energy for us adults, but for kids; they should be able to eat at the regular times they eat at, for meals and snacks.

So, if possible, plan stops around the time they usually eat meals, unless of course if they are sleeping!

And, as a friendly reminder, make sure everyone uses the restroom and has a chance to stretch or run around when you stop.

 

Stop at rest stops for meals, so you’re not tempted to get fast food

One more tip to help you and your family eat healthy on a road trip is limit the temptation of eating fast food.

You can do this by looking for rest stops to eat at and use the restrooms at, instead of in towns. That way, when you pass cities or towns, you won’t be searching for signs for places to eat, just to get gas if you need it.

 

It is Possible to Eat Healthy on Road Trips with Kids

You may need to plan and prepare a bit more than you’re used to. But, it’ll all be worth it when everyone still has their energy and still feeling good once you get to where you’re going!

Just play it smart, stop at rest stops for picnic like meals, and only stop in towns or cities for fuel and to grab some groceries.

That is how to eat healthy on a road trip with kids! Do you have any other suggestions? Leave a comment below if you do!

Social Influences on Food Choices: Peer Pressure

little girl helping mom make food, kids taught about food

Social Influences on Food Choices: Peer Pressure

We all know that peer pressure can make kids, and some adults, do some pretty dumb things! But, did you know that it can change what people eat, as well? Sometimes without even realizing that there are social influences on food choices.

And, without sounding like a sociology professor, what we eat is largely determined by who we eat with, or what others around us are eating.

Just think about commercials for food; usually someone in the commercial is eating, which is going to make you hungry and eat what they are eating.

As humans, the social animals that we are, we are constantly trying to fit in and stay within the norms of society, and that includes what we eat.

Unfortunately, our society, as a whole, eats quite poorly. More so than other countries in this world, too.

With the convenience of fast food, all the advertisements for processed food products, and then the social pressure to eat like everyone else. It’s hard not for people to eat the way they do.

Honestly, I’m proud of you. I’m proud of your for reading this, for taking an interest in healthy eating, and I’m proud of you for wanting to help raise a healthier generation. Because goodness gracious, boy do we need it. We need to do something to turn our countries eating habits around, and it’ll start with our kids being raised to tell the difference between food that is good for them and food that isn’t!

 

 


Related Posts:

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE ON HOW TO GET KIDS TO EAT VEGETABLES

14 Healthy Habits for Kids That You Can Help Them Develop

A Stupid-Simple Way to Get Toddlers to Eat Veggies


Want to Remember This? Pin Social Influences on Food Choices: Peer Pressure to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

peer pressure and food, food peer pressure, junk food peer pressure

So, now that you know just how important it is to help our children, and ourselves; stay strong and continue eating healthy despite peer pressure. Le’ts dig into how we can actually do this!

 

Start Young; Make Healthy Eating the Norm

If we raise our kids with healthy food in our home, and on our tables, from the day they start eating solid food; they’ll think that’s completely normal. So, by the time they go to school, they’ll think their friends are the odd ones when they eat unhealthy food.

If your children are still really little, this is the best route you can take for preparing your kids to eat healthy in the face of peer pressure.

My oldest is in kindergarten this year, and she’s so proud of the way she eats and that she eats healthy. She’ll even come home telling me what the other kids eat and how it’s not healthy, or gross.

…Alright, maybe she’s watched a few too many health documentaries with me and knows a little too much of the process animal products go through to become available to the general public.

But, she’s also the one asking me to make her avocado and tomato sandwiches for lunch next week, and split pea sweet potato stew for dinner. So, there’s that!

 

Make healthy eating a priority in your life

You don’t have to obsess over healthy eating and get mad at anyone in your family who eats something ‘unhealthy’ once in awhile. But, making healthy eating a priority in your life will show your kids just how important it is.

And, don’t just make eating healthy a priority, but learning how to eat healthy, too!

Watch documentaries about health, get a couple of books, and cookbooks. These can be resources for your whole family, especially if you have older children. If they start getting curious about why healthy eating is so important, but don’t want to listen to you; point them in the direction of the resources so they can understand better and learn.

If they learn why it’s so important, either by you making it a priority, or by learning more about healthy eating; it’ll make it easier for them to eat healthy, even when their friends aren’t!

 

Make a mental note of how you feel when you eat healthy vs. when you eat unhealthy 

If you start to connect with your body and learn how you feel when you eat healthy versus when you don’t eat healthy; it’ll make it a lot easier to eat healthier under peer pressure.

So, make sure your kids do this, as well.

You could either make a mental note of it, or get a journal and start actually recording what you eat and how you feel; you may just be amazed!

And, you don’t have to wait til your kids are old enough to write to help them connect what they eat to how they feel. If they complain of a belly ache after eating something unhealthy; ask them what they just ate and ask them if that may be the reason they don’t feel good.

Kids are smart, sometimes they just need a little help connecting the dots. But, when they start to learn how horrible they feel after making poor food choices, they may just stop making them.

They can be stronger than peer pressure when it comes to food choices; sometimes it may just take them learning of the consequences of unhealthy eating first.

 

Get this list of 11 tips for eating healthy despite peer pressure sent straight to your inbox!!

Ignore what other’s are eating, and focus on eating right for you

Ignoring what other’s are eating and focusing on what’s right for you is much easier said than done!

Believe me, I know first hand how hard this can be. My husband does not eat the healthiest of foods, and it is so tempting to eat the same way he does. But, I know I can’t. Or, shouldn’t. Because one glance at the ingredient list on the food he eats, and I’ll see things on it that are horrible for your body; like partially hydrogenated trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, msg, etc.

So, I have to simply ignore what he eats, knowing it’s not good for either of us, and just eat my fruit, trail mix, and healthy home made baked goods (which taste way better than his food anyways).

Understanding how your body feels after eating junk will help you ignore what others eat and eat right for you. So, start there and then move on to this tip, and help your children do the same.

 

Encourage your kids to teach their friends about healthy eating

If you teach your kids about healthy eating, or have them learn about it on their own, then they may be so inspired by the benefits that they’ll want to teach their friends about healthy eating, too.

If you happen to teach your kids and encourage them to teach their friends about it, then it may even go further, at least with young kids. I don’t quite seeing this work with many teenagers.

But, you never know! If you have a child who likes to be the smart one in the group; then encouraging them to teach their friends about healthy eating might not just help your child make healthy food choices under peer pressure. It may help their friends eat better, too!

 

Stay positive and be informative when others ask you questions about why you’re eating so healthy. 

Staying positive and informative when others are questioning your eating habits can be difficult, especially if the other people are being rude about it.

Other’s may wonder why you’re eating a salad, or drinking a green smoothie, if you already look super healthy. They may wonder why you’re on a diet, when you’re simply eating for your health.

Just know, this is more about them and their eating habits, than it is about yours. Our society has been brainwashed into thinking that people only eat healthy to lose weight, most people don’t think of it as a way of life. And, really, it’s their loss to not eat healthy all the time.

Let them know why you’re eating healthy, why it’s important, and why you’re not going to eat fast food like most people do. But, make sure you say it in a way that won’t offend anyone; simply be informative and stay positive that the way you’re eating is the best for your body.

Make sure to teach your kids to be the same way!

 

Help your child  develop a strong sense of self-esteem so they feel confident in eating healthy even if being teased

One of the most important things you, or your child, can do to overcome the temptation of bad food choices under peer pressure, is to develop a strong self-esteem. Developing strong self-esteem will help you, and your kids, feel more confident that eating healthy, instead of eating like everyone else, is the best choice!

Sometimes others can be rude about the way you eat, other kids might tease your child. But, helping your child build a strong self-esteem and confidence in what they eat, will go a long way with your child making good food choices. Even when your not there to help them decide!

And, let your child know that some kids may tease them or not understand why they are eating what they are. Other children may not know about nutrition or understand that what they eat affects how they feel. Let them know that other kids may not understand that eating healthy is important and will help people avoid chronic illness and help you live longer.

It is Possible to make Good Food Choices in the Face of Peer Pressure

It may not be the easiest thing in the world to do; but you can still eat healthy when everyone else around you is eating poorly.

Believe that what you eat is the best for your body, and be sure to let others know why you eat the way you do when they ask about it. Even if they ask about it in a rude or teasing manner. Know that what you eat is promoting health, and that eating like others may promote disease or chronic illnesses in the future.

Really, knowing the connection between what you eat and how you feel can be very helpful in ignoring peer pressure when it comes to making food choices, for yourself and your kids. So, make sure you are making that connection, even if you need to write it down. Help your kids do the same!

You and your kids are stronger than the social influences on food choices; you, and your kids, make the best choice for you, you know better now, than to crush under peer pressure and make poor food choices!

7 Ways to Encourage Healthy Eating in Kids for When You Can’t Decide for Them

boy and blueberries, kids eating healthy, healthy food choices

7 Ways to Encourage Healthy Eating in Kids for When You Can’t Decide for Them

We’re not going to be with our kids forever, and neither can we make all their food choices for them all the time. That’s why it’s so important to find ways to encourage healthy eating in our kids when we can.

Whether we’re sending them off to school for the day, like I had to do with my oldest this past year as she started kindergarten. 😢

Or going to a play date, spending time with friends or family while you have another child, or maybe they’re a bit older and going to a sleep-over or camp!

We can’t tell them what to eat when they aren’t with us!

Well, we can.

But, they don’t have to listen to us if we’re not there to enforce it.

Luckily, there are things we can do to promote healthy eating in kids so that they’ll want to keep eating healthy, even when we’re not watching!

 


Related Posts:

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE ON HOW TO GET KIDS TO EAT VEGETABLES

14 Healthy Habits for Kids That You Can Help Them Develop

A Stupid-Simple Way to Get Toddlers to Eat Veggies


Want to Remember This? Pin 7 Ways to Encourage Healthy Eating in Kids for When You Can’t Decide for Them to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

boy and blueberries, kids eating healthy, healthy food choices

Now that you know why parents should encourage healthy eating, it’s time to answer your questions about how you, as a parent, can promote healthy eating in your children, and how you can promote it at home!

7 Ways to Encourage Healthy Eating in Kids for When You Can’t Decide for Them

Talk to them about expectations

If your child is old enough, you could simply talk to them about the food they should eat, and those they shouldn’t, when not at home.

However, doing this can do one of two things.

It will either clear things up in your childs mind and help them when they need to decide on the food they eat when you can’t tell them.

Or, if they have a little rebellious side, they will take the opportunity where you can’t control what eat, and eat all the foods you just told them not to!

Let’s hope they go with the first option, but if not, there are other ways to help encourage them to eat healthy; other than just telling them to.

Help them connect what they eat to how they feel afterwards

A better option, other than simply telling them what to eat when not with you, is to help them connect the dots from the food they eat to how they feel.

Believe it or not, what we eat affects how we feel physically and mentally.

Do you remember the last time your child had tons of sugar?

They were probably hyper and very active for a short period after, and then may have complained of a belly ache, not feeling well, or wanting to nap.

There’s nothing wrong in telling your child that the reason they feel this way is because of all the sugar they ate!

This actually happened recently in my own home. My husband gave into our oldest when she wanted sugary cereal. She decided to eat it for breakfast, and before she was even out the door for school she was regretting her choice.

She continued to eat the same thing for breakfast most of the week, by the end of the week she was asking me for a healthier breakfast from then on.

Now, my oldest is 6, but she probably understands the connection between what she eats and how she feels better than some adults I know!

And, it’s all because I talk to her about it and help her understand the connection, and have been doing so since she was real little. She’s even watched quite a few health documentaries with me, so she has had the chance to learn from me and others.

Even if your child is 3 or 4, don’t think they’re too young to start connecting the dots between what they eat and how they feel; more than likely, they will be completely capable of understanding!

 

Give them the responsibility to choose what they eat 

If they’re old enough to understand the connection between what they eat and how they feel, then they’re old enough to start making some decisions themselves when it comes to what they eat.

If you hand the responsibility of what to eat over to them when they aren’t with you, then they may just choose what will keep them feeling good!

You may need to remind them before they leave, or before you drop them off, that if they choose to eat a lot of sugar (such as at a birthday party), then they may not feel very good later in the day, and won’t have as much long lasting energy to play.

But, at some point we’re going to have to let go and let them make all their own decisions. So, why not start with what they eat? At least with food, they’ll experience the benefits, or consequences, from their decision in the same day and can learn whether it was a good or bad decision for them.

 

Teach them about healthy eating as early in their life as possible

I already mentioned teaching my own daughter about healthy eating and the connection between what she eats and how she feels.

But, there’s more to know about healthy eating than just the way it makes someone feel.

Start teaching them about how healthy food benefits them. Or, how other foods can cause them to get sick.

Teach them about different vitamins, minerals, and macro nutrients in a way they can understand.

Let them know eating oranges, strawberries, tomatoes and other citrus fruits contain Vitamin C, which will help their immune system, or help them not get sick.

Where as eating plenty of protein, like beans or tofu, will help them build strong muscles. Eating carbs, like pasta or bananas, will give them energy. And, eating healthy fats, like nuts or avocado, will help keep them full and satisfied!

There is a lot more you can discuss with them about healthy eating, but those should help you get started.

Get this list of 12 tips encourage healthy eating in kids sent straight to your inbox!

Be a good example for them

Even more important than talking to them, teaching them, or helping them connect what they eat to how they feel; is what you eat!

Kids love to eat what their parents eat. So much so, that I can barely eat a whole meal or snack without one of my kids asking for some. I can’t even have a full green smoothie to myself!

But, don’t think that they will only eat the healthy food you eat, or even that that’s all they see you eating.

They see everything when you eat. If you push your vegetables to the side, or eat only the potato on your plate. They see if you sneak some candy when you think they’re not looking, or the fact that their dad gets snack food at the store.

They see you and they are watching and learning. The way you eat, may very well be the way they eat, even if you try to teach them better.

Actions are stronger than words. So, if you really want to encourage them to eat healthy, make sure you’re eating healthy, too!

 

Eat healthy at home, so healthy eating is normal

In line with you eating healthy to show them how to eat healthy; try to keep all meals and snacks at home healthy.

If you normalize healthy eating at home, from when they are very young, then that’s what they think is normal; even if the rest of the world thinks otherwise.

 

Make eating healthy at home a big deal, so they’ll want to share their good eating habits with friends and others

To make a bigger impact at home with healthy eating, make it a big deal.

If you’re starting to try to turn your family’s eating habits around so that everyone eats healthier, this will help a ton!

Even if your family eats healthy, it doesn’t hurt to make eating healthy a big deal and feel special.

If you haven’t checked out the other sections on this site yet, there is a section for my own healthy recipes with pictures of the healthy food. And, for some time last summer, I started taking pictures of the healthy food I ate and posted it on Instagram.

Now, my oldest daughter wants me to take a picture of all the food she eats, simply because it’s healthy! Sometimes I do take pictures of it, and sometimes I don’t. Either way, she still gets excited about it, especially when it’s a healthy food she used to not like eating. (Did I mention, my oldest is also a pretty picky eater!)

She’ll even tell me about the food other kids eat at school and in her own words how ‘one of her friends says shes a vegan or vegetarian, but she’s really not because she eats fish or drinks cows milk’. For some background, we eat mostly vegan.

But, it still amazes me sometimes how much she knows about food and healthy eating simply because I’ve included teaching it to her in everyday life since she was 3 or 4 years old.

You Can’t Always Make their Food Choices for them…

But, you can prepare them to make healthy eating choices when you aren’t with them.

From teaching them about nutrition, eating healthy yourself, or connecting the dots between how they feel and what they ate; there are plenty of ways to encourage healthy eating so that it simply becomes second nature to them to do so.

If they choose an unhealthy option when not with you, it’s also not the end of the world; they’re still learning, and maybe that one choice will be enough to teach them that what you were telling them about eating was right!

What’s you favorite way to encourage healthy eating in your kids? Leave a comment, I’d love to know!

8 Simple Tips for Dealing with Picky Eaters

picky eater, little girl looking at cupcake, sugar addicted youth, dealing with picky eaters

8 Simple Tips for Dealing with Picky Eaters

Have you ever had to deal with picky eaters before?

If you’re a mom, then I’m going to guess the answer is yes, even if it was just when your child was a toddler. They can be so hard to feed sometimes!

Or, maybe you have an older child who is a picky eater; I know I’ve always been a pretty picky eater.

Sometimes it’s just a phase, and sometimes it’s more than that.

Either way, there are some things we can do to get our picky eaters to eat more of a variety of healthy foods, and even dig a bit deeper to find out why they won’t eat certain foods.

 


Related Posts:

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE ON HOW TO GET KIDS TO EAT VEGETABLES

14 Healthy Habits for Kids That You Can Help Them Develop

A Stupid-Simple Way to Get Toddlers to Eat Veggies


Want to Remember This? Pin 8 Simple Tips for Dealing with Picky Eaters to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

picky eater, little girl looking at cupcake, sugar addicted youth, dealing with picky eaters

 

Before I get into the tips for dealing picky eaters, I want to answer a few questions you may have about your picky eater.

What do you feed picky eaters?

They eat what they like, or what they like out of what they are given to eat. Most picky eaters will be able to find something in a meal given to them that they might like. I say most, because there will be some who will refuse to eat anything you give them, which is super frustrating!

You should feed them the same food as everyone else in the family, no special meals or anything like that. Or, not unless it is absolutely necessary.

When I first started thinking about writing about dealing with picky eaters, I was dealing with my own picky eater at home. And, I thought I had come up with the best plan ever to ensure she ate dinner every night, even after she refused to eat what I gave her.

I would let her make her own alternate dinner, something really easy to make (she’s 6 by the way).

Turns out, it sometimes just requires a little (ok, a lot) of patience and not budging on what you’re making for a family meal to help your picky eater actually eat what’s on their plate.

I can’t guarantee this will work for all picky eaters, but it’s worth a try! So, stop being a short order cook. Cook one meal for everyone, sit down and eat, and just let your picky eater eat what they will.

How can I help a picky eater?

You can help your picky eater by not giving into them every time they say they don’t like something.

This, I’ve learned from experience.

If you give in and make them only food they say they like, then they will only eat that food.

You have to stay strong and serve them the food you make, even if they say they don’t like it. Stop driving yourself insane trying to please them all the time!

Do picky eaters grow out of it?

For some children, it is just a phase, like toddlerhood. They want to test their limits to see how far you will go to please them, or they want to show their independence by choosing what they eat, or what they don’t eat.

In other cases, some people never grow out of being picky eaters. They may get less picky over time, though. Encouraging them to not be so picky with the tips below will certainly help. Especially if you can figure out why they are so picky with their food. Then you’ll be better prepared to help them not be so picky!

How do you get a picky eater to try new foods?

You get a picky eater to try new foods the same way you get any child to try new foods; you put the food in front of them.

If there’s one thing I remember from my psychology of learning class; it’s that we don’t eat when we’re hungry, we eat when we have food in front of us.

If you don’t like that answer, because it is pretty vague, read the tips below for more ways to get picky eaters to try new foods, or eat more of a variety.

Get this list of 16 tips for dealing with picky eaters sent straight to your inbox!

8 Simple Tips for Dealing with Picky Eaters

Add healthy food into foods they already love 

If you have an extremely picky eater and they absolutely refuse to eat an entire food group, let’s say it’s veggies, then there are still ways to get the nutrients from veggies into your child!

You put them in food they already love!

For example, if they love chocolate cake, you could shred up some zucchini or carrots and add them to the cake. Or, add them to smoothies or make popsicles from those smoothies. There are tons of ways to get veggies into your child, with or without them knowing!

You can check out some more examples and get some recipes from the posts below:

 

Challenge them to ‘eat the rainbow’ everyday

Something that may be a really fun way to get your picky eater to eat more of a variety is to challenge them to ‘eat the rainbow’ everyday.

And, no, I don’t mean skittles, or any other artificially colored candies, either!

I mean ‘eat the rainbow’ from different colored fruits an veggies.

And, there are more benefits to doing this than to help your picky eater eat more of a variety of foods. Different colored fruits and veggies contain different vitamins and minerals. So really, everyone should be doing this everyday!

Don’t be afraid to join them in this challenge, and see who can eat the rainbow first during the day!

 

Make healthy food in a variety of ways, don’t stick to the same recipes

Another way to help your child eat a variety of foods, is by you actually making a variety of foods. Or, at least, making foods in different ways.

Maybe your child doesn’t like one recipe that you make all the time, so they tell you that and you think that they don’t like the food that’s in it. But, if you break that meal down into it’s different ingredients and then make one of the ingredients a different way, maybe, just maybe they’ll love it and want to eat it more. Or, at least be willing to try it different ways!

For example, I used to only use quinoa in a quinoa stew recipe I have, with corn and potatoes. But, my daughter would always complain and say she doesn’t like quinoa.

So, I finally, decided to make quinoa another way for her. I actually added it to a smoothie, and she loved it! She then even went into the fridge the next night to find the plain quinoa I had used and added some berries and brown sugar to it, and said she didn’t mind that either.

Just remember, it may not be the food they don’t like, it might just be the way your make it!

 

Consider the texture of the food 

Another big reason some kids may act so picky around a food is because of the way it feels when they eat it.

Maybe it’s too hard for them to chew, like raw veggies. Or, they don’t like that they can feel the chia seeds on their tongue when they eat it.

The texture of the food can be a big reason why your child doesn’t like the food given. Try asking them, if you can, why they don’t like a certain food. And, if it’s because of the way it feels when they eat it; try making it a different way.

Steam their veggies so they get softer, grind up the chia seeds before adding them to their food. Don’t give up on giving them a certain food before you know why they don’t like it, it could be a simple fix!

 

Have your child grow their own food

Sometimes having your child be close to their food will help encourage them to eat it.

If they grow a fruit or vegetable from a seed, then they may feel so proud and can’t wait to try the food they grew. After all, now they know where it came from!

My 3 and 6 year old are currently helping me grow strawberries, and my 6 year old can’t wait til some start to grow in so she can eat them.

 

Have your child help you make their own food, or recipes

Sometimes all it takes to help picky eaters eat more of a variety, is to let them make their own food, or at least help.

If they’re helping you in the kitchen make dinner, then they can see exactly what goes into it, how it’s prepared, and maybe even help make part of it. This will give them ownership over making some of their food themselves, which can go a long way in getting them to eat it, or at least try a few bites!

Who knows, maybe your picky eater will grow into a recipe developer. Maybe the only reason they’ve been so picky is because they wanted to know how the food is made and didn’t want to eat it without knowing. It could just be that your child is very independent and wants to make their food themselves, or help make it.

 

Have your child pick out new foods to try at the store

If you’re trying to get your child to try new foods, try letting them pick out the new food they are going to try.

Some children just don’t like being told what to do, what to eat, and when. They are trying to show their independence.

And, if there is one thing I’ve learned from raising a strong willed toddler; it’s that sometimes you have to just choose your battles and be alright with them choosing some things themselves. Whether it’s what they wear for the day (mismatched socks, leggings, a frilly flower skirt, a butterfly shirt, and a dress on top) or with the next food they try.

 

Make eating healthy fun; use cookie cutters for their fruits and veggies, make pictures with them, etc.

If you’ve ever been on Pinterest, you have probably seen the adorable scenes made out of food.

Now, before you start saying that you would never be able to create something so beautiful with healthy food; know that most little kids won’t care too much about what it looks like. In fact, they’ll think it’s cool that mommy’s playing with their food. They may even have some suggestions for what you can do; or they may even take over and start doing it themselves!

So, grab your cookie cutters and start having some fun playing with your kids food! They’ll want to join in the fun, and may even think it’s funny to eat part of it!

Dealing with Picky Eaters

As you can see, there are many ways you can help your picky eater eat better and try a variety of foods.

Maybe you have to be a little more creative than usual, or simply give them more responsibility and more choices.

Sometimes kids just like to be independent and choose what goes into their own body; nothing wrong with that, they should get to choose. Other times they might just not like the way you make the food, so change up how you make it.

There’s no one way for dealing with picky eaters.

There will be trial and error.

Just don’t give up when it comes to feeding your picky eaters healthy foods, they may even thank you for your efforts when they’re older and have to make meals for themselves….or their picky eater kids!

avocado and tomato sandwich, leads to 7 easy, healthy, simple, vegan recipes for healthy eating and for beginners

7 Easy Vegan Simple Recipes for Healthy Eating | Beginner Vegans

Have you ever wanted to have a vegan diet, but didn’t know what type of meals you could eat? You just wanted an easy vegan simple recipe for healthy eating.

Well, I’ve been there, too! Vegan meals may seem intimidating to make at first, but they’re really not that difficult to make, I promise.

It’s not easy to change what you eat. And, when it comes to making sure you are getting enough of the right vitamins and minerals; that’s even trickier.

It takes time, persistence, and discipline to change your diet.

But, I’m going to help you out since I’ve already been through the struggle and don’t want to see you having to struggle, too!

Stop struggling with beginning a vegan, or plant based, diet and learn how to do it with confidence instead! Find out how, here!

Keep reading to find the 7 best quick and easy vegan meals! (In mine and my girls opinion, that is, mother and child approved! YAY!!) Because sometimes when you search for vegan meals, they don’t always look the yummiest.

Want to Remember This? Pin 7 Easy Vegan Simple Recipes for Healthy Eating | Beginner Vegans to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

easy vegan meals, easy vegan dinners, easy vegan lunch, vegan recipes for beginners, going vegan recipes, easy vegan meals

Why I Know You Need Quick and Simple Vegan Recipes as a Beginner

My goal with you reading this is to help you find delicious looking, and delicious tasting meals that the whole family will love!!

I have been trying to change my diet towards a healthier vegan diet, or plant based, for over 5 years. So, I’m not going to tell you it’ll be easy, but hey everyone is different, so it might be for you!

Since I’ve started my journey, I have taken a nutrition course and sociology of food course in college, watched quite a few documentaries on the subject, been given half a dozen vegan cookbooks, and have been a little obsessed with eating healthier.

I may have had a little advantage over others when trying to cut all animal products out of my consumption; I’ve been a vegetarian since I was a kid. Not because I was made to or told to. It was my own decision, and I’ve kept it up for 20 years.

This vegan thing becomes even trickier when you have a family to feed, and when not everyone is willing or wanting to change their diet. But, if you’re the one who cooks, they don’t really have much of a choice, plus it’s better for them. The best tip I can give you for feeding a family that isn’t used to ‘vegan’ meals is to start with vegetarian meals and then start swapping out some of the ingredients to make them vegan.

Or, better yet, find some new ‘vegan’ meals everyone loves.

Kids may not care so much, unless you’ve already introduced them to cheese and they go without cheese for quite some time. (My 5 year old is like that.) Do you have any idea how addictive cheese is; it’s ridiculous how addictive it is.  If you’re not already vegan, try cutting cheese, or better yet dairy, from your diet for a week. Let me know how it goes!

Finding the right meals for your family could take some experimenting.

It’ll take some time and patience; and, I’m going to tell you right now that you may not even like everything you cook.

But, it doesn’t mean you should give up. It’s good to try new foods and introduce new things into you diet. Especially when it’s new fruits or veggies, beans or rice, or maybe even tofu! The first like 10 times I tried making tofu, I hated it. About 6 months ago, I found a recipe I love, and now I eat it every week! 

Whenever we try new things in my home, my 5 year old reminds us all of the Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood episode when they try new foods. Then, she’s ok with trying it.

But, to get to what you came here for, here’s 7 Easy Vegan Simple Recipes for Healthy Eating and beginners (and just so you know, they aren’t in any particular order; they’re all awesome). These recipes are also family friendly and won’t make you hate eating healthy! Many of them are pretty quick to make, too. And, we all know how valuable our time is.

 

 

7 Easy Vegan Simple Recipes for Healthy Eating

1. Diced Veggie Vegan Burritos

vegan burrito recipe

So, I might be a little biased with this recipe. I created this burrito recipe on a whim with inspiration from Moe’s (Southwest Grill). I only ate from the restaurant once, but I loved the food I had from there! So, I had to try to recreate what I had. And, after my family moved from the east coast to the west coast of the U.S., this restaurant is no where to be found.

Plus, this meal contains complete protein (with the beans and rice combined), which is what most non-vegans complain about vegans not having enough of. Even my nutrition professor from when I was in college said to make sure you combine food together like this to get complete protein. What most non-vegans don’t understand though, is that there is protein in more than just meat and dairy products!

Click here to check out the recipe!

 

 

2. Quinoa Corn and Potato Stew

If you have never had quinoa before, this is a must try!

Quinoa boasts about being a complete protein all by itself. I know some people who have tried quinoa and didn’t like it, but I’m pretty sure the only way that can happen is if it’s completely plain.

This quinoa stew (found in this cookbook) however, is anything but plain! It’s super simple to make! And, it’s filling! My husband even loves this recipe, and he’s not a vegan (and doesn’t appreciate that I try to make healthy food).

 

3. Pasta Salad

Easy Pasta Salad Recipe

My first time ever making pasta salad was about two years ago. I don’t even know if I’d had it before then. I didn’t follow a recipe or anything like that. But, I wanted pasta salad. So, I made it.

I cooked some rotini pasta. Mixed together some fruits and veggies, a little olive oil and a little lemon juice. Then cooled the pasta and mixed it in. My husband even liked it; it was that good. And, if you haven’t read any of my other articles, one thing you should know is that getting my husband to like something, or even try something, I make is very difficult. Check out the recipe here!

 

4. Avocado Tomato Sandwich

avocado tomato sandwich

This is my alternative to a grilled cheese!

Whenever I crave a grilled cheese, I make one of these instead! It’s super simple and can be made in about 5 minutes or less. 2 pieces of toast, half an avocado to spread on both pieces of bread, 1 tomato thinly sliced, and some garlic and sea salt. Put it together, and it doesn’t even compare to a grilled cheese anymore; it is so much better, plus healthier!

My girls (2 and 5 years old) will eat these, as well. Sometimes my younger daughter will just pick the avocado and tomatoes out and eat those and leave the bread. But, she’ll also eat half an avocado plain and ignore a cookie on her tray, too. I’ve even tested this theory! Find the Recipe here

 

5. Best Soup Ever

If you’re trying to add more veggies into your diet but don’t know how; try this simple soup. You pretty much just add in any veggie you want, some pasta, beans, veggie stock or bullion cube and a few other items; it’s done when it’s warm and the pasta is soft.

It’s usually only myself and older daughter who eats this when made, so I usually cut all the veggies up for a full recipe and freeze half of them. Or, I make a full recipe of this soup and freeze half of the soup for a week, for sometime in the future. This soup usually lasts all week, or at least 5 days, with half the recipe. I found it on 7dayvegan.com, they have many other vegan recipes, as well!

 

6. Vegan Pizza

Vegan pizza with kale, zuchinni, tomato, nutritional yeast, red onion, and more on it, home made pizza dough, cooking with kids

How can you go wrong with pizza?!

It’s a favorite in many households and there are so many different ways to make it. I know, one of the main ingredients to pizza is cheese. But, guess what. I replaced the cheese on my pizza with nutritional yeast (yay! now it’s vegan and full of the nutrients I need! Hello vitamin B12!) and it doesn’t taste too bad, either!

Actually, the only difference I really tasted was that there’s not as much grease. With adding veggies as toppings, it also gives you more nutrients than the regular cheese pizza that I used to crave. You could make it even better for you and add some beans on top. Maybe next time. I’m currently eating what you see in the picture below, and it is delicious!

(My 5 year old helped make it, she put the toppings on the left side.)

 

7. Vegan Cauliflower Mac and Cheese from Vegan Insanity

This may be the last meal listed, but that does not mean that it’s not the best!

This mac and cheese is one of the reasons it has been possible for me to stay vegan; I can still eat the comfort foods I grew up with, just with different ingredients.

This recipe was not the first vegan mac and cheese recipe I have tried. I’ve tried recipes that required tofu or squash in it, and they just didn’t taste like something I could enjoy, long term.

Then I found this recipe and went out to buy a food processor (and by ‘went out’ I mean went to amazon.com). Once I had it, I bought all the ingredients and made this recipe. It was soo good, I immediately placed it on my meal list (the list I use when coming up with meal plans). You can get the meal planning templates I use here, for free!


Check out these posts Quick & Simple Vegan Recipes for Beginners and Busy People (AKA Parents).

(And, no, you don’t have to be a kid to enjoy the recipes in those posts; I simply find meals designed for kids are more appealing to us adults, as well!)


 

I hope this list of the 7 awesome meals for beginner vegans has inspired you to love the food you make and eat.

And, hopefully you have at least one new recipe to try and love, no matter which recipe it is!

All of these are some of my favorites, and like I said, I even got my husband to eat some.

So, good luck on your journey to becoming vegan or enjoying a vegan lifestyle the healthy way!

If you didn’t notice, one thing all these recipes had in common (other than being vegan) was that all contained 2 or more fruits and veggies in them! With the Standard American Diet (SAD) severely lacking in this area, this is so important!


Also, check out my meal planning guides;

How to Make a Healthy Meal Plan on a Budget

and

How to Meal Plan (when you have no motivation to do so)


Stop struggling with beginning a vegan, or plant based, diet and learn how to do it with confidence instead! Find out how, here!

Please share in the comments which of these easy vegan simple recipes for healthy eating is for your favorite!

vegan meals for beginners

 

Need help finding awesome vegan meals? Check these out! #veganmeals vegan meals, easy vegan meals, fast vegan meals, healthy vegan meals, awesome meals
Need help finding awesome vegan meals? Check these out! #veganmeals vegan meals, easy vegan meals, fast vegan meals, healthy vegan meals, awesome meals

How to use the Lunch Box Meal Prep Method…and save your sanity this summer!

strawberries and blueberries as part of a healthy lunch using the lunch box method

How to use the Lunch Box Meal Prep Method…and save your sanity this summer!

Are you a stay(work) at home mom who spends way too much time in the kitchen getting your kids lunch and snacks? And, with the summer coming up, it’s just going to get worse! But, it doesn’t have to; let me introduce you to the lunch box meal prep method!

This is the best method I have found to reduce the most stress in my home every single day  when it comes to feeding my strong willed, highly independent 3 year old.

I’ve been using this method for the past couple of months, and both I and my 3 year old loves it!

She even gets excited going through her lunch box full of healthy snacks and lunch; saying ‘you put this in my lunch?!’

No more struggling to get her to eat what I want her to, and no more going into the kitchen every 5 minutes because she says she’s hungry.

If you’re ready to learn this method of meal prepping, keep reading to find out!

 


Related Posts:

The Easiest Way to Find Out What Food Kids Will Eat!

Meal Planning Ideas and Tips to Stay on Track!

12 Healthy Vegan School Lunch Ideas


Want to Remember This? Pin How to use the Lunch Box Meal Prep Method…and save your sanity this summer! to your favorite Pinterest Board!!

strawberries and blueberries as part of a healthy lunch using the lunch box method

How the Lunch Box Meal Prep Method Works

In this method, you choose a few ‘main’ dishes for lunch (carbs/protein), a few different veggies (and maybe something to dip them in), a few different fruits, and a few different ‘desserts’.

Make sure you have everything you choose ‘in stock’ at home, or add it to your grocery list and make sure you get it.

Then, to help please your picky eaters, or non-picky eaters, let them choose one thing from each category, either the night before or morning of making their lunch.

I prefer having them choose the night, or day, before. That way I can make their lunch while they eat breakfast and not have to distract them from that meal. Since it can be hard enough to get them to do anything in the morning before school.

You can either ask them what they would like, or use a lunch box template to let them draw or write out what they want each day; just to make it a little more fun for them!

This is super simple to do. And, if your kids/family don’t care what they have in their lunch, then you can choose everything for them!

Why Pack Their Lunch if Not Going to School?

I can not tell you how much this one tiny trick has helped reduce my stress during the day!

My kids are 3 and 6, so I already have to do this for my 6 year old for her to bring to school.

But, I’ve found that making my 3 year old’s lunch at the same time, and putting it in a cute lunch box in the fridge, takes almost no extra time!

It has also reduced the amount of times she asks me to make her food during the day, reduced the tantrums when I don’t give her what she wants, and it helps with her independence!

I’ve realized over the past year that my 3 year old is a strong-willed child.

If you have a strong-willed child, then you already know how much of a struggle anything can be with them. The more you try to be in control, the more you’ll have power struggles with them every inch of the way! It could be about what they wear, when they have to brush their teeth or pick up toys, and especially with what and when they eat.

The lunchbox method helps with the power struggles, by allowing them to choose what they have in it (unless they are still very young, like my 3 year old, then you could choose for them). It also gives them the power to choose when they eat, as long as you don’t have time restraints.

Don’t Forget to Use the Lunch Box Method in the Summer!

I started using this method a couple months ago, and I already can’t wait to use it during the summer this year! (Especially with being due with my third little girl on my oldest daughters last day of school!)

It’s going to be a huge time saver, and sanity saver.

I can’t even begin to tell you how relieved I will feel when my 3 and 6 year old tell me they’re hungry, while I’m nursing their little sister, and all I’ll have to do is tell them to go get their lunch box from the fridge!

Get Free Templates!

 

Use it for yourself, too!

You can use this method for your own lunch, even if you’re a stay/work at home mom like me!

This will make life even easier on you, as you won’t have to spend time thinking about what you’re going to have for lunch, or spending extra time in the middle of the day to make yourself lunch!

I know when I worked outside the home, I ate so much healthier than when I started staying home with my girls; I didn’t have a choice.

I packed myself properly portioned healthy meals and didn’t allow myself to eat out when I worked outside the home. But, when I became the stay at home parent, that went out the window because I thought I’d have the time and freedom to eat what I wanted. Ha. This resulted in spending  a lot of time in the kitchen, and usually less healthy food because I was already hungry when I went into the kitchen, and I didn’t have my lunch all ready for me.

So, yes, I do this for myself, too. Or, at least meal prep my lunch on the weekends so all I have to do is dish it and heat it up at lunch time, instead of spending a hour in the kitchen in the middle of the day.

I can’t wait for you to start using the lunch box method!

If you have little ones at home who want to, and can be, slightly independent, or have older children who will be home for lunches in the summer; then this is a ‘must do’ for saving your sanity, reducing stress, and saving you time!

I honestly can’t wait for you to start using this method everyday and making your life easier!

It’s super simple to do and set up, too.

Just remember the four parts to the lunch box:

  • main meal (with protein and carbs)
  • veggies
  • fruit
  • ‘dessert’

That’s it!

(I have ‘dessert’ with the quotation marks because this should be a healthy dessert that still provides your child with nutrients, not an empty calorie dessert. Some examples for what I have personally put in my daughters lunches are; oatmeal cups, healthy muffins, chickpea cookies, date and cashew bars, trail mix, etc.)

What are you going to put in your childs lunch when you start using the lunch box meal prep method? Leave a comment, I’d love to know!!

1 2 3 9

This site uses cookies. By using this site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this. If you would like to know more, go to the Privacy Policy found on the Disclosure Page.

Close