Culinistas's Kitchen,  Recipes & Cooking

April Fools! Trick Your Kids Into Eating Healthy

by The Culinistas

Ah yes, the age old task of sneaking in fruits, veg, and whole grains into kids meals. Now that you’re eating at home, it’s up to you to make this happen & we’ve got some tricks to share just in time for April Fools Day.

Don’t have all these ingredients on hand? Our co-founder Jill is doing a ten minute Instagram livestream everyday at 2pm EST to answer your questions. Can't make the livestream? Shoot us an email (q@theculinistas.com) and we will help with substitutions.

Meatballs

Meatballs are an irresistible vessel for all things nutritious. Our classic Meatball Marinara recipe calls for zucchini and lentils in addition to beef. We cook the lentils until they’re easily mashed with a fork, grate up the zucchini, and mix it all together with herbs and spices in unrecognizable nutrition. 

Sauces and Pestos

Try making a creamy veg-based sauce sans cream. Carrots, peppers, and celery root all do well when roasted then blended with olive oil, water, and S&P. Our Kale Parsnip Casserole is the perfect example. Or try a pesto: kid friendly pesto can be nutritionally heightened by adding dark leafy greens like kale and other varieties of nuts (walnuts are our fav!)

Meatless Meat Sauce

Client favorite, Mushroom Bolognese is our take on the classic meat sauce with crimini, oyster, and shiitakes. Texturally, it’s a perfect match especially when the ‘shrooms are diced very small.

Breads

Quick breads are an easy breakfast and snack option; they’re delicious with the addition of dried fruit and whole grains. Take our Quinoa Apricot Bread for example: quinoa and fine cornmeal are joined by buttermilk, dried apricots, and coconut sugar for a whole grain-packed breakfast to satisfy any sweet tooth.

Colors

We’ve found that thinking about the color of a dish affects how likely kids are to eat it. If you’re making a dark brown meat sauce, or a red curry, disguise some veg that follow a similar color scheme like carrots or bell peppers (don’t forget to mince or grate them beforehand!). Or, refer to the dish by its color:, our Green Rice (with bok choy and kale, both in a saucey pesto and mixed throughout) is a hit among youngsters. Call it Lemony Kale Rice on the other hand? Not so much. 

A special thanks to Sylvie Rosokoff for the beautiful photograph and Kristina Preka for food styling