Hi there, from Columbus, Ohio. My name is MIMI and I am a mom to 3 kids, ages 2, 3, and 5. All of whom are rather picky eaters. I've had to find lots of ways to incorporate good, healthy, well balanced meals that are kid friendly and look appealing to my kids. That's why I almost always "sneak" the healthy into my kids food. I do this by pureeing a lot of veggies and fruits into everyday items. After I am sure my kids like a food item and have tried it several times, I always let them know what healthy items I hid in their food, that way, when I present the food to them later in it's natural form, they are more willing to give it a try. They seem to like the food and are now a lot more open to strange foods. My daughter gets upset now if I don't somehow use spinach in a food item. I've been known to sneak spinach in everything, even in brownies!
Here is our dinner from today. It is sneaky mac n'cheese muffins. Noodles, with cheese on top, but hidden inside are pureed beans, spinach and tomatoes. There are also cut up hot dogs and an egg to make it very protein enriched. I've also included carrots, peanuts and half a banana as side dishes. With a cookie for dessert and a glass of milk to drink. With preschool aged kids, portion sizes need to be smaller, and variety is key. They aren't very big kids so they don't eat as much as adults, and they need to see a food 5-8 times before they decide definitively if they like something or not. So I always put lots of small portions of different items on their plates.
Here's today's food ratings, according to my 3 kids:
Food-o-meter-8/10, the youngest wasn't sure about the mac'n'cheese muffins.
Healthy- 9/10 very healthy except for cookie, but you can't get them to eat anything without reward of cookie at end. :-)
Mouthfuls- a lot, it took well over an hour to get all 3 completely done.
Price-about $2 per plate plus I have enough leftovers for another meal or two.
Thumbs up- 6