- Food and Cooking
Parents: Essential Food Hacks Your Kids Will Love
Are your children picky eaters? Do you dread dinnertime? Do you find a full lunchbox at the end of the day? It doesn't have to be like that. Once kids see food as something enjoyable and funny, they will eat anything you put in front of them!
Try these fun ideas, and everybody will look forward to mealtimes!
Serve your toddler's food in an ice cube tray for less mess. I know that sounds a little weird at first, but think about it. Peas in one square, crackers in another. Pure genius.
You will need:
- 2 mini chocolate chips & 2 white chocolate chips
- 1 pear
- 3 tablespoons chocolate chips, melted
- 1 thin slice of baby carrot, cut into a small triangle
- 1 fig, cut in half diagonally
- 1 peeler
- 1 pastry brush
Okay, now the fun begins!
- Push the mini chocolate chips into the middle of the white chocolate chips to form the eyes.
- Use a knife and carefully cut a slice in both sides of the pear to form wings. Make sure you keep the tops of the slices attached to the pear. Use a peeler to shave the pear skin off in between the wings in an oval shape. This is the penguin's white belly.
- With a pastry brush, paint chocolate all over the penguin's body (apart from his belly). Use a cocktail stick to make a spot for the chocolate chip eyes and the carrot beak. Add the eyes and beak. Place the penguin on a plate and put the fig halves under his body for feet.
Meet your new best friend. You can use cookie cutters to make fried eggs, pancakes, and whatever else you can think of, way more fun for kids. What 5 year old girl wouldn't want to eat flower-shaped foods?
Little girls are going to love this one!
- Cut a tomato in half and spoon out the gooey center.
- In a mixing bowl, combine bread crumbs, 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan cheese and some garlic powder.
- Fill the tomato halves with this mixture and top with any leftover Parmesan.
- Cut an olive in half and use to create eyes and place the tomato face onto an oven tray.
- Choose what kind of hair you would like to put onto your character and with previously cooked spaghetti, add to the oven tray.
- Bake for 10 minutes, when it's done, rip a basil leaf in half for a smile and add the hair.
The Cheapest Ice Packs
Saturate a sponge with water (you can buy really cheap packs of 4 at the discount store) and pack away into a ziplock bag. Keep these in the freezer overnight and they're ready for the lunchbox in the morning.
Yoghurt Ice Pops
For a healthy snack, try this great idea. Simply pierce the yoghurt lid with a spoon and freeze. Ta dah!
Heart-Shaped Boiled Eggs
What you'll need:
- Any clean milk or juice carton
- A chopstick
- Rubber bands
- Cut the carton and fold it in half lengthwise.
- Hard boil an egg.
- While the egg is still warm, peel the egg and then put onto the carton. Place the chopstick horizontally across the center of the egg, and put rubber bands on both ends.
- Leave it for about 10 minutes.
- Remove the chopstick and cut the egg in half.
Spaghetti & Meatballs (Birds in a Nest)
This one is my favourite!
- First, buy some candy eyes.
- Cook spaghetti and meatballs as you usually would.
- Peel a carrot for the beaks.
- When serving, create a nest with the spaghetti by laying it in a swirl on the plate. Then add the meatballs to the middle. Stick on the eyes and beak.
- Optional: Place a stick of celery underneath for the branch.
Stop cakes from going stale by attaching sliced bread to the cut sides with cocktail sticks!!
Oatmeal in a Rice Cooker
Okay, so this doesn't really cook the oatmeal any faster - but - you don't have to constantly keep running over to the stove with a 3 year old under your feet. And it keeps it warmer for longer too.
Cut a handful of grapes at a time with this awesome tip: Place the grapes between two plates and carefully run a serrated knife through them.
Teddy Bear Pancakes
These are much easier than I thought they would be! All you have to do is squeeze the pancake mix into the pan like so:
- Two dots for the eyes, draw a nose and mouth - teddy bear style.
- Draw a circle around the nose/mouth.
- Draw another circle for the head and add ears.
- Colour over the face with the rest of the pancake mix and the other side will be a cute little face!