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5 Sneaky Yet Brilliant Ways to Stuff Nutrition Into Your Kids’ Food

It would be great if your kids would just eat what you put in front of them, but for most parents, meals and snack times are just a fight to get even a single crumb into their kids that isn’t their “in” food of the moment (pizza, chicken fingers, mac and cheese, repeat). Check out these sneaky yet brilliant ways to get extra nutrition into your kids’ food!

By
Bruce and Jeanne Lubin,

5 Sneaky Yet Brilliant Ways to Stuff Nutrition Into Your Kids’ Food

Calcium Boost

Sneak some calcium into your kids’ food by adding powdered milk to their meals. It’ll be inconspicuous to them in dishes such as mashed potatoes, meatballs, and peanut butter sandwiches (mixed in with the peanut butter).

When to Bring Out the Veggies

If your child never wants to eat his vegetables at dinnertime, try putting out a plate of raw veggies like carrots, celery, and broccoli right before dinner. Since he’ll be hungry (and probably pestering you in the kitchen), it will be more likely that he’ll succumb to this healthy snack.

More Ways to Sneak Veggies

If your kids refuse to eat any vegetables at all, you’ll love this clever way of getting more nutrients into them. If you have too many vegetables to use before they go bad, puree them in a blender with a little bit of lemon juice, then freeze. Defrost and add to sauces, soups, stews, enchiladas, and more—your kids won’t be able to taste the difference! The key is to make sure you don’t dramatically alter the color of the dish you’re serving. So if you’re making a white sauce, for instance, try a puree of cauliflower and summer squash. Tomato-based sauces can usually handle one part “green puree” for every four parts tomato sauce. So grind up that broccoli and spinach and get going!

What to Do About Juice

Some kids refuse to drink water, but juice is loaded with sugar. You can reduce your children’s calorie and sugar intake by diluting their apple and orange juice with a bit of water. When you open a new bottle, empty a quarter of the juice into a pitcher, then fill the original juice bottle back to the brim with water. It’ll still taste delicious, but the kids will get less of a sugar rush, and the juice will last longer to boot.

Sugary Cereal Reward

If you’re one of those super-parents who don’t let their kids eat sugary cereal, have you thought about using it as a reward? Kids not used to having a morning sugar fix normally like sugary cereal brands as much as they like candy, so why not use it instead of candy treats? That way, when kids are getting a sugary treat for being good, they’ll at least getting it from a food that is also enriched with vitamins. And if you want to wean your children off the sugary stuff in the morning, this might be a good way to start!

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