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Helping Children to Enjoy Vegetables

Updated on October 28, 2018

Healthy Vegetables

Children Eating Vegetables

Underrated vegetables will have a new popularity with children, by you being creative and trying new ways to present them.

Be adventuress, experiment with herbs and spices when cooking vegetables.

Learn cutting and chopping techniques designed to speed cooking time and release flavor.

Learn techniques for boiling and steaming, if it is not appealing by smell no child will attempt to eat over cooked and stewed to death vegetables.

Try different methods, like stir-frying or butter-steaming.

Salads are an excellent way for children to get their daily quota of vegetables, as when you find there is one they don't like just don't add it.

In this article I have added a few ideas to encourage children to eat vegetables, as you find vegetables they don't like give up on that one, expand your discovery of new combinations and introduce them to wide variety of tempting and unusual vegetables, you will be surprised by the acceptance of children enjoying them.

Stir - Fry Vegetable Salad. Photo Credit - Elsie Hagley
Stir - Fry Vegetable Salad. Photo Credit - Elsie Hagley

What you eat is going to be a big influence on what your children like to eat.

If you rarely serve vegetables with meals, don't be surprised if your kids develop the same tastes.

Try to discover what it is about a vegetable your child dislikes is important.

Is it the taste,texture or the color?

"You might be able to combine it with something that improves the taste,"like Stir-fry vegetables, by adding different flavors to them, until you find something they will eat.

A nationwide survey showed that 65% of all children in the United States dislike eating vegetables.


Cooking Vegetables like this, teenagers that are not great vegetable eaters, will like this dish,with all the flavors combine together it makes a nice satisfying one-dish lunch.

Oriental-style salad Crisp stir-fried vegetables and small shrimp are chilled in a soy-flavored marinade,then topped with crunchy cashews.

1/2 pound broccoli

1/2 pound edible-pod peas

2 tablespoons salad oil

2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed

1/4 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

1/2 pound mushrooms, thinly sliced

1/3 cup regular-strength chicken broth

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 tablespoon oyster sauce (optional)

1 can (4 1/2oz.)small shrimp, drained

1 jar (2 oz.) sliced pimentos drained

1/2 cup mayonnaise (optional)

Crisp lettuce leaves

1/4 cup salted cashews or slivered almonds

Cut flowerets off broccoli stalks, then cut flowerets into 1/4 inch thick slices.

Trim and discard base of stalks, peel stalks and cut crosswise into 1/8 inch thick slices.

Remove and discard strings from peas. Set broccoli and peas aside.

Heat oil in a wok or wide frying pan over high heat, add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring for 1 minute.

Add broccoli, peas and mushrooms, cook, stirring until vegetables are just tender-crisp to bite (3 to 4 minutes).

Pour into a bowl.

In a measuring cup, stir together broth, soy, sugar, and if desired, oyster sauce.

Pour over vegetables, then stir in shrimp and pimentos.

Cool, cover and refrigerate for a least 4 hours.

Drain vegetables, discarding liquid. If desired, stir in mayonnaise.

Spoon over lettuce leaves and sprinkle with cashews.

Makes 4 servings.

Greek Salad

Greek salad

1 lettuce

1 green pepper, sliced

3 tomatoes, quartered

1/2 cup sliced celery

1/2 diced cucumber

1/2 cup pitted black olives

100 g feta cheese, cubed


1/4 cup olive oil

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 tablespoon DYC spiced vinegar

1/4 teaspoon sugar

Tear lettuce into bite-sized pieces and place in a salad bowl.

Add pepper, onion, tomatoes, celery and cucumber.

Pour dressing over and toss to coat.

Decorate with olives and feta cheese.

Serves 4-6


Put all ingredients in a screw top jar.

Shake vigorously to combine just before using.

Cabbage Rolls with Mashed Potatoes

Cabbage Rolls and Mashed Potatoes.

  • 4 cabbage leaves
  • 1 smal onion
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 400 grams minced beef
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 x 425g can savoury tomatoes


  1. Freezing a whole head of cabbage is the best way to get the pliable leaves you need for making cabbage rolls and it much easier than the usual laborious technique of blanching individual leaves.
  2. Do this several days ahead of time, wrap unwashed cabbage in foil and freeze.
  3. To thaw, unwrap and place in a bowl of lukewarm water for about a hour.
  4. To separate leaves, hold cabbage under warm running water and gently peel off one leaf at a time.
  5. Remove the leaves you require and the remaining cabbage you can use for soups or stews, if desired.
  6. For easier rolling trim of thick stem end of each leaf.
  7. If you do not have a frozen cabbage and would like to do this the other way place the cabbage leaves in a large sauce with a little water. Bring to the boil and cook for 2 or 3 minutes or until the leaves are soft enough to roll.
  8. Drain and allow to cool slightly.
  9. Peel and finely chop the onion.
  10. Melt the butter in a frying pan and add the onion. Cook for 2 minutes
  11. Add the mince and cook until all pinkness is lost.
  12. Stir in the garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  13. Remove from the heat and spoon serving amounts on to each cabbage leaf. Roll up, tucking in the sides.
  14. Place seam side down in a large frying pan.
  15. Add the savory tomatoes,
  16. Bring mixture to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes.
  17. Serve cabbage rolls with the savory tomatoes spooned over.
  18. Mashed Potatoes
  19. 4 to 5 medium to large size Potatoes
  20. 2/3 cup of butter or margarine
  21. 2/3 to 3/4 cup milk
  22. Salt and pepper
  23. Peel all the potatoes first, rinse under running luke warm water then cut into small pieces quickly to prevent browning and add to boiling water,bring back to boil then simmer until potatoes are tender.
  24. About 10 to 15 mins. Drain well.
  25. Mash hot potatoes with potato masher or beat with electric mixer until no lumps remain.
  26. Add butter, beat until well blended. Stir in the milk a little at a time, until potatoes reach desired consistency.
  27. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  28. I always do Mashed Potatoes with most dishes for children as I find they love it and will eat some vegetables with it.
4 stars from 1 rating of Cabbage rolls

Vegetable Garden

Teach children to grow vegetables. - It will stay with them for life.

Helping children to grow their own vegetables garden can encourage them to eat vegetable as they will get satisfaction from picking and helping you to prepare them for eating, it is very rewarding for young and old alike to reap the benefits of a successful garden.

Small home orchards are excellence way also as fruit is a great source of vitamins and are essential for children good health and well-being.

  • Tip When Planting Carrot Seeds.

Mix a packet of carrot and radishes seeds together when sowing as radishes are one of the fastest growing of all crops and children can pull and eat them to thin out the carrots.

Good rich soil is essential for a crisp mild flavored radish, so they will not be to hot for children to eat.

It is also very easy to grow pumpkins - They will love watching them grow and it will encourage them to try to eat something they have grown their selves.

I grow pumpkins along the side of the Urenui River in New Zealand but this year they got caught by floods but we still managed to get some that never got wash down the river.

Salad Platter

Chicken and avocado salad.

Teenagers love this easy salad

2 avocados, peeled and sliced

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 cups diced cooked chicken

or smoked chicken

1/4 cup sliced celery

1/4 cup raisins

2 oranges, peeled and sliced

1/4 cup mayonnaise

lettuce leaves

Toss avocados in lemon juice.

Combine avocado, chicken, celery, raisins, oranges and mayonnaise.

Toss to combine.

Place on a bed of lettuce leaves.

Chill before serving

Serves 4

Couscous with Vegetables - cooking with alia

Which of these vegetables does your child dislike?

See results

© 2011 Elsie Hagley


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