Posts Tagged ‘ vegetables ’

New Study Finds Perks for Organic Crops

Monday, July 28th, 2014

A new review published in the British Journal of Nutrition and covered in a recent New York Times article suggests that organically grown crops may have an edge over their conventionally produced counterparts.

In their analysis of 343 peer-reviewed studies published all over the world—70% in Europe—researchers found that, on average, organic crops/crop-based foods had higher levels of antioxidants, lower concentrations of cadmium, and a lower incidence of pesticide residues.

The review found that organically grown crops had an average of 17% more antioxidants (including polyphenolics) than those produced conventionally. In their review, the researchers cited several dietary studies that suggested consuming more foods rich in antioxidants—especially fruits, vegetables and whole grains—may protect against a variety of chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, certain cancers and neurodegenerative diseases. Antioxidants are believed to protect the body against cell damage caused by free radicals—substances in the body and in the environment (especially in smoke or pollution). When produced in the body in excessive amounts, free radicals can increase inflammation in the body and contribute to the development of disease.

Cadmium is a highly toxic metal that accumulates in the body (especially in the liver and kidneys). According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), cadmium is found in foods naturally and due to air pollution. Although the exact health benefits of lowering dietary intake of cadmium are unknown, the British Journal of Nutrition review found that, on average, organic crops had 48% less cadmium than non-organic crops. The researchers urge keeping cadmium levels in the diet as low as possible. They also note that the European Commission has set maximum residue levels in foods for cadmium as well as lead and mercury, also toxic metals.

Although the FDA acknowledges there are no regulatory limits for toxic elements like cadmium or lead in food, foods that are found to have higher than normal levels of such metals are brought to the attention of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), who then assesses the potential hazards associated with cadmium intake at such levels.

The British Journal of Nutrition review also revealed that the frequency of occurrence of detectable pesticide residues was four times higher in conventional crops than in organic crops. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), pesticides are chemicals intended to kill unwanted insects, plants, molds, and rodents. The AAP believes that even low-level exposure to pesticides among children is concerning, especially because “they encounter pesticides daily and have unique susceptibilities to their potential toxicity.” In fact, in its policy statement on pesticide exposure in children, the AAP cites evidence associating early life exposure to pesticides with pediatric cancers, decreased cognitive function, and behavioral problems.

Even though the British Journal of Nutrition review has gotten a lot of positive press, not everyone agrees (as evidenced in this article by AG professional) that its conclusions are definitive or that such results should ultimately dictate people’s perceptions or purchases when it comes to organic versus conventional food. Eating and buying food is very personal, and it’s up to parents to decide what’s best for their families based on personal preferences, nutrient needs, budgetary and time considerations and other factors.

In the meantime, kids should at very least be encouraged to meet current Dietary Guidelines for Americans, especially when it comes to foods that many fall short on including nutrient-rich vegetables, fruit and whole grains. Until we know more, focusing more on helping kids get closer to meeting current recommended intakes for produce and whole grains rather than pitting organic and conventional foods against one another is a great first step towards helping them meet their nutrient needs that support optimal growth and development. MyPlate recommends 1 to 2 cups fruit, 1 to 3 cups vegetables and 1.5 to 4-ounce equivalents whole grains daily, depending on your child’s age and gender.

Still, if you can afford and choose to provide your family with mostly organic foods, you’ll likely reap at least some benefits (eg lowering pesticide intake) by doing so.

To learn more about organic food, check out my Scoop on Food post, Should You Buy Organic Food?

Do you buy organic foods?

Nutrition Labels: 3 Things To Avoid
Nutrition Labels: 3 Things To Avoid
Nutrition Labels: 3 Things To Avoid

Image of a variety of fresh healthy foods via shutterstock.

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Hiding Vegetables in Food: A Good or Bad Idea?

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014

In a New York Times article, Stealth Vegetables, Michael Moss points out two seemingly opposite strategies by the food industry to get everyone to follow moms’ advice to eat more vegetables: making them more attractive and easier to integrate into meals, and hiding them in other foods via precooked purees.

When I shop at the grocery store, I often buy lots of whole produce. But I also love to take shortcuts by buying some of the vegetables my family loves already prepped in some way—it definitely helps me save time when feeding my family. Some of our favorites in the produce aisle include shredded cabbage, carrots and lettuce and shaved Brussels sprouts, and frozen or canned low- or no-sodium vegetables. Although many of the fresh, ready-to-use options are more expensive than vegetables sold in their whole forms, they can be a viable option—even once-in-a-while—to get dinner on the table and vegetables into your kids’ mouths.

Purees are another option. In his article, Moss mentions Green Giant’s 100% Veggie Blend-Ins. To promote the new product, the company has partnered with with Jessica Seinfeld, author of Deceptively Delicious. The book features traditional recipes kids enjoy that are “stealthily packed with veggies hidden in them so kids don’t even know!” according to the book’s description.

Another bestselling book by Missy Chase Lapine, The Sneaky Chef: Simple Strategies for Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids’ Favorite Meals, includes recipes that disguise so-called superfoods (including vegetables) inside kids’ favorite meals to get them to eat more healthfully. Chase Lapine also created Sneaky Chef Purees that are available in Whole Foods Market and other retail outlets.

David Grotto, a registered dietitian nutritionist, author and spokesperson for Hooray Puree—another vegetable puree option—says, “The reason I’m affiliated with Hooray Puree is that for as many years as I’ve been an RD(N), I don’t think we’ve made any real headway in getting kids—especially those of lower economic status—to eat more vegetables. That’s one reason why I like to incorporate vegetable purees to fill short gaps between recommendations and consumption while helping children to eat more vegetables—and build a healthy relationship with them.”

Purees can certainly provide a wonderful, nutritious boost to everything from smoothies to baked goods to lasagna to chili and other foods. There’s also evidence that using them to enhance meals can increase vegetable intake in young children. A small 2011 study by Penn State researcher Barbara Rolls, PhD found that adding puréed vegetables to favorite foods led 3- to 6-year-olds to consume almost twice as many vegetables (and 11 percent fewer calories) over the course of a day. The preschoolers also accepted the dishes enhanced with vegetables as much as the dishes served in their regular form. Also, feeding the children entrees enhanced with vegetables didn’t reduce their intake of vegetable side dishes. The researchers concluded that “Although covertly incorporating vegetables into foods can have a beneficial effect on children’s vegetable intake, it should not be the only way that vegetables are served to children.”

While I think adding purees to foods children already like or to new recipes kids can grow to love is wise, I’m not a fan of tricking kids to eat certain things. I think it’s really important for children to know what vegetables and other ingredients are in their food; that helps them learn about the many forms in which vegetables can be eaten and how vegetables served in different forms can taste different. For example, they may find that they like sweet potatoes when they’re baked into French fries instead of when mashed, or prefer cooked onions, broccoli and carrots over raw versions. The bottom line, as always, is to help our kids meet their daily quota for vegetables—1 to 2.5 cups daily for most, depending on their daily calorie needs—in any way we can, and to choose our battles in the process.

I asked a few moms who are also registered dietitians to share their thoughts on hiding vegetables. Here are their colorful answers:

“I’m not a fan of sneaking veggies into kids’ food because it doesn’t teach them how to eat and enjoy the actual food. It also can confuse children; for example, if they get a cookie made with squash at home and are told it’s healthy, they may think all cookies are healthy. I’m all for adding vegetables to dishes, like spinach to mac-n-cheese or mushrooms to a bolognese sauce (both of which I do), but in this case children see the vegetables and are given the opportunity to actually taste them and also sense their texture.”

~Jessica Fishman Levinson, MS, RDN, CDN of Nutritioulicious and mother of 2-year-old twin girls

“Sneaking veggies into foods has a short-term benefit—your kids will get more nutrition into their bodies at that meal. But long term, it’s not very helpful and doesn’t teach them any valuable habits (you can bet your child won’t be pureeing his own cauliflower into mac-n-cheese when he’s away at college!). What’s more, once your child catches on to what you’re doing, he may feel angry and mistrustful about it. Kids need to learn about the taste and texture of vegetables. I’d rather serve the real deal and have my kids only take one or two bites than hide purees in food. That being said, if you want to go the sneaky route, go ahead—but just be sure you serve actual whole veggies on the side. Or if you want to make black bean brownies or zucchini muffins, let your child in on the secret too!”

~Sally Kuzemchak, MS, RD, author of Cooking Light Dinnertime Survival Guide, and mother of two boys, ages 9 and 5.

“I say “nay” on hiding veggies in kids’ food. Hiding is deceptive and does little to foster a child’s love for vegetables. That said, I’m all for “weaving” a variety of vegetables into recipes just as you would any other nutrient-rich ingredient. I love adding pureed pumpkin to muffins and pancakes, mashed black beans to brownies, and shredded carrot or finely diced red bell pepper to taco filling. Adding veggies boosts the nutritional GPA of your family’s diet, and serving veggies—in all their glory—with meals boosts it even further. “

~Liz Weiss, MS, RD, co-creator of MEAL MAKEOVERS, a mobile recipe app for busy families and mother of two boys, ages 19 and 15.

“I have never hidden veggies in food, but I am not opposed to it. I have always offered my kids veggies in a variety of ways: pureed, as part of soups; in smoothies; as part of dips; roasted with olive oil and salt; and just plain raw. In my opinion, good nutrition matters most and takes precedence over form.”

~ Elizabeth Ward, MS, RD, author of MyPlate for Moms, How to Feed Yourself & Your Family Better and mother of three kids, ages 19, 18 and 15.

“It actually can work to hide veggies in kids’ food. I believe that fitting those veggies into every meal as much as possible is an important goal. If you hide veggies like pureed, grated, or finely diced carrots, zucchini, bell peppers, tomatoes, and greens in smoothies, muffins, casseroles, soups, and more, you can amplify the nutritional power of these dishes. However, it’s important that kids learn to like the taste of veggies on their own, too. Even if you’re kids are picky, introduce fruits and vegetables at each meal. Just place a small portion on their plate at each meal to make them more familiar.”

~Sharon Palmer, RD, author of Plant-Powered for Life and mother of two boys, aged 17 and 15.

“I am a fan of boosting the nutritional potential of all meals; blending and pureeing vegetables in sauces, dips and smoothies is a great way to do that.  However, I caution parents from doing only that in order to get plant-based foods in their child’s diet.  We want to raise our children to consciously make better decisions on their own when we are not around, so it is critical that they experience those individual foods in obvious ways starting when they’re very young. Show the color on the plate!  We know that if you do that, they are more likely to balance their plates in a similar way when they are away from home given the choice. Hiding the foods does not teach them to choose power foods.  This works very well for my daughter and my son. They have very different flavor palates. Although one is more initially accepting than the other, repeated exposure presented in a variety of ways continues to expand their food preferences.”

~Angela Lemond, Pediatric and Family Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and mother of two kids, ages 10 and 7.

“I do not like to “hide” vegetables in the food I cook for my children. However, I do use vegetables to naturally boost the flavor of many dishes my kids enjoy like soups, chili and Mexican fare (hello salsa!). If my child asks if vegetables were used, I answer honestly. But I also explain why and how they are used. I try to get my kids involved in the cooking process and allow them to choose healthy recipes from cookbooks so they gain a full understanding of how a dish is created.”

~ Toby Amidor, MS, RD, author of The Greek Yogurt Kitchen and mother of 3 kids, ages 11, 9 and 7.

“Yes, I think hiding veggies in baked goods is great…zucchini bread anyone? My kids are all grown now, but I never had any qualms about hiding healthy food so it gets into their bodies!”

~Janet Brill, PhD, RD, author of Blood Pressure Down and mother of three kids, ages 26, 24 and 18.

What do you think? Should you sneak in veggies or is it a bad idea?

Image of chocolate cake and carrots via shutterstock.

 

 

 

 

 

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5 Myths About “Going Vegetarian”

Sunday, March 2nd, 2014

In celebration of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ National Nutrition Month, I’m thrilled to share this wonderful guest post for The Scoop on Food by Sharon Palmer, The Plant-Powered Dietitian™.

Obesity rates among children aged 2 to 5 years old have reportedly plummeted by 43% over the past decade. This is huge news considering the efforts we’ve been taking as a nation in recent years to fight the obesity epidemic. There’s no denying there’s been an increased interest in food and nutrition, but as a registered dietitian who promotes the power of plant foods, I believe the improved health of our children may be linked to an increased emphasis on such foods. We can thank the growing list of best-selling vegetarian cookbook authors, vegetarian and vegan celebrities, and even our former president, Bill Clinton for giving the “veggie” lifestyle a whole new reputation. Even Jay Z and Beyonce adopted a vegan diet for 22 days this past winter.

While plant-based eating is slowly gaining momentum, many myths surrounding the “veggie” lifestyle still linger–especially when it comes to providing our children with optimal nutrition for their growing minds and bodies. Here are 5 misconceptions surrounding feeding our kids a vegetarian diet, debunked.

Myth: Children will not be satisfied with plant-based meals.

Truth: Your children will hardly miss the meat when you focus on all the whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes available in the plant world. Start with breakfast, for example: pile your child’s breakfast plate with fresh berries, whole grain cereal topped with toasted walnuts, homemade quick breads, or buckwheat pancakes with peaches or pears. The options to go “veggie” for the first meal of the day are endless.

Myth: It’s impossible to feed children vegetarian snacks throughout the day.

Truth: Store pre-cut veggies and fruit in your fridge, and chopped nuts and dried fruit (with no sugar added) in your pantry for snacks. Many plant foods are nature’s perfect finger foods and make for naturally delicious and convenient snacks. What’s not to love?

Myth: Children will not get enough protein if they don’t eat meat.

Truth: It’s a widespread misconception that it’s difficult to get enough protein from plant foods. We now know that it’s very simple to obtain all essential amino acids from plant-based sources such as legumes, soy, nuts and seeds. Incorporate a good quality protein at each meal or snack and your children will easily meet recommended protein intakes.

Myth: Children will not get enough calcium if they don’t eat dairy.

Truth: It’s important for growing bones to get adequate amounts of calcium–and two to three servings per day of green leafy vegetables, almonds and broccoli should help you and your children reach the daily recommended calcium goal. You can also add calcium-fortified foods such as tofu, orange juice, or plant-based milk alternatives to the mix.

Myth: Preparing plant-based meals is laborious, complicated and boring.

Truth: Plenty of kid-friendly and plant-friendly recipes are as simple as could be! And thankfully, gone are the days when vegetarian diets are considered to be about as hip and tasty as munching on alfalfa sprouts and chomping on seeds. Think: whole grain pitas filled with cucumbers, bell peppers and hummus, whole grain spaghetti with marinara sauce, and even a classic peanut butter and banana sandwich.

Image of girl cooking with vegetables via shutterstock.

Do your kids follow a vegetarian diet? If so, do you have concerns?

For vegetarian (and non-vegetarian) recipe inspiration, check out our Food & Recipes Guide!


How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy: Vegetarian Meals
How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy: Vegetarian Meals
How to Eat Healthy During Pregnancy: Vegetarian Meals

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Should You Buy Organic Food?

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

Over the years, you’ve likely heard mixed messages about whether it’s worth it—financially, nutritionally or from an overall health standpoint—to choose organic over conventionally produced foods. As going organic has become a popular trend and big business—the Organic Trade Association (OTA) reports the US market for organic foods and beverages continues to grow and reached $29.22 billion in 2011—it’s likely parents often wonder if they should replace some or all of the conventionally-produced foods they usually buy with organic versions. If the answer were that simple!

While the health and environmental effects of organic and conventionally-produced foods will continue to be researched and debated among health experts, a recent report by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)  suggests the following, as outlined in a press release:

  • While organic and conventional foods have the same vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, proteins, lipids and other nutrients, organic foods also have lower pesticide levels, which may be significant for children (who are especially vulnerable to their effects);
  • Organically raised animals are less likely to be contaminated with drug-resistant bacteria; that’s because organic farming rules prohibit non-therapeutic uses of antibiotics;
  • Because no large human studies have been performed, we don’t yet know whether long-term consumption of an organic diet improves health or lowers disease risk.

According to the AAP report, the bottom line when it comes to kids’ overall diet is that they should aim for a healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low fat or fat-free dairy products, whether organic or conventional. Dave Grotto*, RD, author of “The Best Things You Can Eat” agrees. He says, “I usually spend my time talking to parents about what foods are most important for kids to eat rather than how they were grown.” Grotto says that, in fact, most research on the health benefits of fruits, vegetables and whole grains used conventionally grown—rather than organic—produce and grains. When asked his advice to parents about buying organic versus conventional foods to feed their kids, Grotto says, “It’s a personal choice. Either way you go is great as long as your kids are fitting in nutrient-rich foods to meet their food group and nutrient needs.”

Another registered dietitian, Melinda Hemmelgarn, who consults with Organic Valley, a cooperative of organic family farmers based in LaFarge, WI, says that while she fed her now-grown children conventional food, thinking there was no difference, she would have invested in organic food if she knew then what she knows now. When asked why, Hemmelgarn says, “As a consumer, buying organic food is my best guarantee that the food I put on my family’s table will be free of genetically engineered ingredients (never tested for long term safety on humans or the environment), artificial hormones, antibiotics and significantly reduced pesticide residues.” Her extensive experience as member of two organic farming boards taught her that organic farming can protect children today and in the future by helping to preserve functioning antibiotics, protect soil and water quality, and reduce the impact of climate change.

When asked if any foods were more worth it than others to buy organic, especially for parents who have budget constraints, Hemmelgarn says it’s most important to choose organic options for foods higher up on the food chain like meat and milk—especially because kids tend to drink a lot of milk.  “But fruits and vegetables matter too.”

When it comes to produce, registered dietitian Sally Kuzemchak* recommends following the advice of the Environmental Working Group (EWG) and to buy organic versions of fruits and vegetables that are on the EWG’s Dirty Dozen PlusTM list (produce that contains the most pesticides). Kuzemchak says, “Because kids’ bodies are much smaller than ours, chemical pesticides become more concentrated.”  This list includes apples, celery, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, grapes, hot peppers, nectarines (imported), peaches, potatoes, spinach, strawberries, sweet bell peppers, kale/collard greens and summer squash. Kuzemchak also says parents can feel comfortable choosing produce from the EWG’s Clean 15TM list (produce that contains the least pesticides). This list includes asparagus, avocados, cabbage, cantaloupe, sweet corn, eggplant, grapefruit, kiwi, mangoes, mushrooms, onions, papayas, pineapples, sweet peas (frozen) and sweet potatoes.

Do you feed your kids organic food? Why or why not?

Image of organic food via shutterstock.

Disclosures: David Grotto is a current spokesperson for California Strawberries who represents both organic and conventional growers; Sally Kuzemchak is a current spokesperson for ALDI and serves on the Applegate Meat & Cheese Board; and I am a current spokesperson for Got Milk?.

 Get healthy finger food recipes your tot will love, here.

Healthy Snacks: Veggie Pancakes
Healthy Snacks: Veggie Pancakes
Healthy Snacks: Veggie Pancakes

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Increasing Kids’ Fruit and Vegetable Intake

Monday, January 6th, 2014

We all know kids especially need to listen to their parents and eat their fruits and vegetables. But because many, just like their parents, skimp on fruit and vegetable intake, it’s critical to figure out ways to increase intake in nutrient-rich produce. The key is to do it in a way that doesn’t turn them off to these powerful foods or create drama, especially when enjoying family meals.

Fruits and vegetables pack in so many nutrients and potent plant chemicals that help kids grow and develop. Collectively, they’re a key source of fiber and potassium—a nutrient that many kids (and their parents) fall short on. Many produce options also contain vitamin C, a key antioxidant nutrient, as well as folate, magnesium, vitamin A and vitamin K.

Eating fruits and vegetables has been linked with so many vital benefits as well. A 2012 review in the European Journal of Nutrition found convincing evidence that increasing fruit and vegetable intake reduces the risk of hypertension, coronary heart disease and stroke and may even lower cancer risk. Because studies also suggest that produce intake in childhood can predict produce intake when they become adults, it’s even more essential for parents to help their kids meet their daily quota for fruits and vegetables while they’re still young.

In order to help kids get the 2 to 4 cups of produce they need daily as recommended in MyPlate (individual amounts needed depend on their age and calorie needs), it’s important to first figure out what drives kids to eat (or not eat) produce in the first place. Then it’s important to find ways to get it on the table and into their mouths.

To address the first question, a 2011 study published in International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity found the following variables are among those that play a role in kids’ fruit and vegetable intake: the perception that fruits and veggies aren’t as filling as fast food; how the produce looks, how it’s prepared and its quality; its appearance, taste and texture; influences of peers (for example, are their friends eating it, too); and whether it’s available at school and if they think they have enough time to eat it.

A recent study published in The Journal of Human Resources even found that offering kids monetary incentives—a nickel, a quarter or a raffle ticket for a larger prize—at school led to an 80% increase in children who ate a serving of fruits or vegetables at lunch. An added bonus: food waste was decreased by 33%. Whether using incentives like this at school or even at home is a good thing to do is certainly something up for debate among parents and health professionals. Nevertheless, the study provides some interesting food for thought on how to help kids work toward meeting their daily food group and nutrient goals, no?

To help kids seamlessly and enjoyably get more fruits and vegetables into their diets, registered dietitian nutritionists’ Lyssie Lakatos and Tammy Lakatos- Shames (aka The Nutrition Twins) recommend encouraging kids to help buy and prepare them. While they say parents should never make a big deal out of it if their kids won’t eat any or much produce (it can, after all, take up to 20 tries before kids will accept and enjoy a new food), they encourage them to keep trying and to emphasize to their kids what’s in it for them when they eat nutrient-rich foods. “Telling kids that healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables, will make them stronger and faster on the playground, or make their skin, hair and nails look better can definitely be tangible incentives for them to eat more produce,” says Lakatos-Shames.

When it comes to vegetables in particular—cup for cup, current guidelines recommend more vegetables than fruit, though they’re both important—the Nutrition Twins recommend a few strategies such as getting kids involved in the cooking process. They say it makes sense that kids become more invested in enjoying what they eat when they take part in the preparation, and I concur! Also, any parent knows that kids, especially younger ones, have a lot of fun when they get to help in the kitchen. The Nutrition Twins recommend letting them stir ingredients together, sprinkle cheese on top of vegetables before they go into the oven and to watch the cheese melt or the veggies brown as they cook in the oven.

The bottom line when it comes to helping kids eat more produce is to buy it and to offer it. It’s also important to eat and enjoy it in front of them. Preparing produce—especially vegetables—in attractive and tantalizing ways can also help. With that in mind, below you’ll find a recipe for delicious zucchini fritters from the beautiful and useful new book, The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cures.

Zucchini Fritters

Sunday mornings were all about our mom making fritters for the family, so for us they are a comfort food. However, no need to feel guilty indulging in these for breakfast, lunch–or dinner! These good-size fritters will warm your insides and give you a mood boost for just about 100 calories each.

Servings: 4 (two 4-inch fritters per serving)

Ingredients:

2 cups coarsely grated zucchini

½ cup coarsely grated white onion

1 egg

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

1 cup cornmeal

1 teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon fresh cracked pepper

2 teaspoons canola oil, divided

Honey, maple syrup, or apple sauce for serving

Salt to taste (optional)

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.

2. Place the grated zucchini over 3 layers of paper towels in a thin layer. Let sit for at least 30 minutes to lose some excess moisture. (Make sure the grated onion sits as well, for at least 5 minutes before using, to activate its powerful phytonutrient compounds.)

3. After 30 minutes, change the paper towel for new sheets and squeeze the zucchini a little to lose more moisture.

4. In a bowl, whisk together the egg and parsley. Add the zucchini, onion, cornmeal, baking powder, and pepper. Stir well to combine. The batter will be thick and chunky. Let rest 10 minutes.

5. Add 1 teaspoon of oil to a large nonstick pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot, drop in a scant 1/3 cup of the batter, flattening into a 4-inch fritter. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the top of the fritter looks slightly bubbly and dry. Turn and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. Use the remaining teaspoon of oil as necessary to cook the remaining fritters.

6. Keep fritters warm at 200 degrees Fahrenheit in the oven until all are cooked. Serve with a little honey, maple syrup, or applesauce.

Nutritional Information:

Per serving (without salt): calories 216, total fat 4g, saturated fat 1g, cholesterol 53mg, sodium 152mg, carbohydrates 39g, dietary fiber 4g, sugars 4g, protein 6g

Percent Daily Value: vitamin A: 10%, vitamin C: 36%, iron: 17%, calcium: 10%

For more tips to help you help your kids eat more fruits and vegetables, visit this previous Scoop on Food post; you can also visit Fruits & Veggies: More Matters

Image of zucchini fritters via The Nutrition Twins.

Full disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cure from the publisher. The recipe was adapted with permission from the publisher.
Find healthy recipes your toddler will actually eat with our helpful guide.

Family Dinners: 4 Tips To Make Them Better
Family Dinners: 4 Tips To Make Them Better
Family Dinners: 4 Tips To Make Them Better

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