When you are trying to think of kid friendly recipes it is always a good idea to start with foods they really like to eat and try to make them healthier. For example recently I made mashed potato, which is a favour ite with both my children, but when I mashed it I added a tin of butter beans. They noticed that there was something a bit different about the potato but both ate it all, and were surprised afterwards when I let them know what was different.
Hidding the healthy food in the dish
A kid friendly recipe doesn’t just have to have a hidden healthy food in it though. A kid friendly recipe that makes my children eat is a healthy equivalent of a dish they really enjoy often on a theme. So for example at Christmas I make them a pizza in a Christmas tree shape, but in order to make it seem authentic I have to use lots of different vegetables for decorations, such as peppers, mushrooms and sweetcorn, and just add a small sprinkling of cheese at the end to make a glittery effect. I use green peppers to make the branches so it is a lot healthier than just a normal cheese and tomato pizza, but the love it as it is so different to normal. I also make them snowmen shapes out of mashed potato sitting in gravy (with hidden veg in) and use veg for face, buttons, arms and hair. You can’t use too much veg this way, but it is a novel way to get them to eat up their dinner.
Sweet foods for our kids!
Kid friendly recipes can also be sweet foods too. You can make mini fruit kebabs by putting small pieces of soft fruit onto a cocktail stick. Children will love being able to choose their own fruits and making patterns with them. I use tinned peaches, grapes, mango, melon, strawberries, and other seasonal fruits. You can also make a fruit Christmas tree using kiwi fruits as the green base and putting round decorations on the tree using raspberries with a star fruit at the top. If your kids like sweet cakes try making them into kid friendly recipes with half as much sugar and using dried fruit instead. They will have a sweet treat but it will be healthier for them.
Low in Salt!
Kid friendly recipes need to be lower in salt that ones for adults. You can make most dishes without salt, and if they do need salt (such as curries) try to put in less than you would if you were serving adults. You can always add salt to your meal once you have dished up the kids food. If you use stock powder in your sauces and stews be aware that these won’t be kid friendly recipes because of the high salt content so you might need to make your own stock or use one that is salt reduced.
So kid friendly recipes need to be healthy but importantly fun. If you can get the kids involved with making the food too they will enjoy it even more.