With a little planning, healthy eating and easy meal prep can go hand in hand! Whether you’re looking for a way to work in more protein for energy, cut back on processed sugar or disguise veggies in fun and delicious eats, these recipes will do just the trick.
Each dish includes many engaging opportunities for your child to get involved in the preparation process as well. Not only will this help them learn about healthy eating, measurements and all of the science that comes cooking, they will also get to hone their fine and gross motor skills with the mixing, mashing, sorting and shaping that comes with the many food prep tasks.
Most importantly, cooking is a great way to spend time together as a family. So tie up those aprons, put on your chef hats and grab the mixing bowls—you’re sure to find something here that will satisfy your family’s appetite!
From the dough to the toppings, preparing pizza can be tasty fun for the entire family. Preparing pizza from scratch at-home is often intimidating (thanks to the dough), but this recipe breaks down some great tricks for getting it just right. Making the leap from store-bought pizza often opens up healthier and more customizable options. While you chop the toppings and manage the oven, your child will love mixing and rolling the dough! Click here to get started with your kid-friendly, nutrient pizza tonight.
Rainbow Veggie Kabobs
Getting kids to eat vegetables is an ongoing challenge for families everywhere, so we found a recipe that makes eating them fun! From organizing and identifying vegetables based on their colors to arranging them in order on a kabob skewer, this recipe is perfect for parent and child culinary teamwork in the kitchen. Click here to get started on your rainbow veggie kabobs right away—they provide a thoughtful list to help you figure out what veggies your family might prefer in each color category.
Rainbow veggie kabobs alone may not be enough to entice your child to actually eat their veggies (rather than just play with and organize them). If that’s the case, we found two great kid-friendly hummus recipes for dipping and enjoying. Often, hummus is not the go-to snack for kids, but by adding peanut butter or masking/removing the tahini (the commonly bitter flavor that deters some kids from eating hummus), you can create a hassle-free nutritious snack. Your child will appreciate helping you measure the ingredients, add them to the food processor and help you push the buttons to blend! Click here for a peanut butter hummus recipe and here for a tahini-free recipe.
Protein Energy Balls
When it comes to kid-friendly cooking and eating, it’s hard to overlook protein energy balls. With diverse nutrients, flavors and texture options in each recipe as well as no-bake prep, these are a must-try with your young sous chef. They’re packed with protein to help sustain energy levels throughout the day and are surprisingly simple to make. You’re sure to find a recipe you and your kids will love from our ACTIVE Kids collection of protein energy ball recipes here.
Frozen Yogurt Fruit Bites
Fruits are often a little easier to sneak into your child’s diet than vegetables. Their vitamin-packed sweetness makes them a perfect kid- and parent-approved dessert replacement for healthier snacking. Frozen yogurt fruit bites are a fun way to take advantage of that with minimal prep that can be handled almost entirely by your kids. The hardest part of this recipe is waiting long enough to savor them as a truly frozen treat—they’re the perfect snack for a hot summer day! Click here for this “berry” delicious recipe.
Spinach doesn’t have to be a “bad” word when it comes to kid-friendly foods. Your little one will enjoy helping you mix and shape the ingredients required to turn this nutrient-rich leafy green into a delicious side dish that everyone will like. A little bit of breadcrumbs, cheese and butter go a long way when it comes to inconspicuously working greens into your child’s diet. Click here to learn how to prepare this family favorite.
There are a number of things we love about this pancake recipe. With a serving of fruit, whole grains and protein, they’re a complete breakfast in a way that the “just-add-water” pancake batters are not. Preparing these pancakes with your child will have them thinking about the individual ingredients in their pancakes rather than just powder and liquid. You can talk about the nutrient value in each component as you mix, cook and enjoy together for a complete, flavor-filled lesson and breakfast (or anytime!) meal. Is your child gluten sensitive? No worries—flour substitutes work beautifully with this recipe. Click here to learn more!
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