My daughter’s first solid food was sweet potato. As we added more foods to her baby menu, she learned to love avocado, kale, quinoa, peas, oats, broccoli, squash, and spinach. I figured I was totally winning and congratulated myself on raising such a healthy little girl. Then, she turned one and decided she wanted only pizza and quesadillas. Forever.
At some age, kids realize they have the power to make a choice in what they eat, and vegetables get a backseat to all things cracker and cheese related.
I realized very quickly that I needed to come up with some creative ways to make sure she got enough vegetables every day. While there are many ways to “sneak” in vegetables for little ones, these three recipes for kids are my favorite and make weekly appearances in our household. They are all extremely healthy, use a variety of ingredients, and are easy to make with things you probably already have on hand.
Don’t be surprised if you love them all as well! The chocolate zucchini muffins are especially delicious with your afternoon cup of coffee. Go ahead and sneak one during nap time, mama. You deserve it!
3 Vegetable Recipes for Kids Who Don’t Like Veggies
Banana Beet Bread
I actually used this bread as my daughter’s first birthday cake. This bread can be made in mini-loaf pans or as muffins. It’s vegan and uses a combination of oat and whole wheat flours. It’s delicious with almond butter or on its own.
- 2 large ripe bananas, smashed with a fork
- 1/2 cup cooked and blended beets (I use frozen)
- 3 Tbsp melted coconut oil
- 3 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 3/4 cup oat flour
- 1 tsp cinnamon
Mix the wet ingredients with the smashed bananas. Mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then combine all the ingredients together. The batter will be thick. Coat your mini loaf pan with coconut oil and fill with the batter (I usually get three mini loaves out of the batter). Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 22 minutes, or until done in the center.
Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
These are so delicious you won’t believe they are healthy and gluten free! Your kids will love them, and they make really good lunchbox additions. They won’t know that each batch has a full cup of zucchini!
- 1 cup shredded raw zucchini
- 1/2 cup almond butter
- 1 large rip banana, mashed with a fork
- 1 egg
- 3 Tbsp maple syrup OR honey
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 Tbsp coconut flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 Tbsp chia seeds
- 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips (optional)
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries (optional)
Place all wet ingredients in a medium bowl and combine. Add the dry ingredients and mix until incorporated. Spray your muffin tin liberally with a non-stick spray. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes. Cool completely and store.
Broccoli Cheese Puffs
These puffs save the day in our house when she’s refusing all other green veggies I offer. I keep a batch in the freezer and put one straight into the toaster oven for five minutes until warm. The combination of broccoli, cheese, egg and bread crumbs makes this a protein-packed and filling meal addition!
- 1 16 oz bag organic frozen broccoli
- 1 cup organic shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 beaten egg
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
Cook and drain the frozen broccoli. Place all the broccoli in a blender and blend well. Place in a medium-sized bowl and combine with all other ingredients. Shape into patties and place on a silicone-lined baking sheet. Cook at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 18-20 minutes, or until the edges are slightly golden. Cool completely and place in a single layer in a large ziplock and move to the freezer.
Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com