Kids are notoriously picky eaters. And even if yours isn’t overly picky, their tastes seem to change day-by-day … even hour-by-hour! So getting kids to eat their fruits and vegetables can be difficult, to say the least. But since eating a variety of fruits and vegetables is an important part of a child’s growth and development, we’ve got to find a way to get those greens (and oranges, yellows, reds…) into them! To help you out, we’ve rounded up our favorite five kid-approved recipes that are packed full of fruits and veggies. We promise we won’t tell them if you don’t.
1. Creamy Dairy-Free Pumpkin Alfredo
This delicious allergy-friendly pasta dish is actually packed full of pure pumpkin purée! Normally alfredo sauce is heavy on the cream, butter, and Parmesan cheese. While delicious, that isn’t healthy for anyone – big or small! This rich dinner recipe is a much healthier version that your kids will ask for again and again.
2. Chocolate Dessert Hummus
While you may have just cringed after reading that recipe title, I promise you this stuff is incredible. Chickpeas are packed with so many good nutrients for kids and adults alike and are relatively flavorless on their own, which makes them perfect for this chocolatey snack or dessert. Dessert dips have long been a thing, but this healthier version really takes the (chocolate) cake! Your kiddos will think they’re indulging, but you can feel good knowing that this dessert hummus is healthy legume fuel for the tank.
3. Healthy Vegan Mac and Cheese
Kids love mac n’ cheese! Heck, everybody loves mac n’ cheese! But it’s usually high in fat and not the healthiest choice for your little one. Instead of being full of cheese, butter, and cream/milk, this mac n’ cheese uses tons of baked butternut squash to achieve that creamy dreamy texture. We promise neither of you will be able to tell the difference.
4. Green Smoothie Muffins
Muffins are the perfect on-the-go breakfast or throw-in-their-lunch snack. But did you know that storebought muffins are packed full of sugar and fat? They’re pretty much cupcakes sans icing. Next time you need a batch of muffins, whip these up instead! They’re naturally sweetened with banana and unsweetened applesauce, and are packed full of baby kale, spinach, and shredded carrots! They’re bright and flavorful and you can’t even tell there are almost 3 cups of fruits and veggies in them. What a win!
5. Grain-Free Sweet Potato Dessert Squares
Kids are notorious for wanting dessert any chance they get, regardless of whether they finished their dinner or not. Instead of a cookie packed full of processed sugar, serve them up one of these rich sweet potato squares! They’re packed with all the goodness that sweet potatoes boast: Vitamins A, B, and C, potassium, and dietary fiber. Plus, they’re naturally sweetened with just a little maple syrup. So even if Little Jimmy didn’t finish his broccoli, you can feel good about giving them a little slice of this sweet treat.