Vegetables Every Day
Breath-Saving Strategy: Increase your little one's vegetable intake to three servings daily. For kids 1 to 6, a serving is one tablespoon for each year of age. For older children, figure on half a cup cooked veggies or one cup raw greens such as lettuce. Jack Bishop, author of Vegetables Every Day and father of two girls ages 6 and 2, offers advice for accomplishing what seems impossible:
Think "Twice is nice." Bishop cooks up at least two vegetables for dinner every night. Then he lets the kids select which one they want and scoops it onto their plates. Sometimes, they surprise him and ask for both! "I used to put vegetables on the kids' plates and they would protest," he says. "When I began offering them a choice, they started to eat more vegetables."
Savor simplicity. The more sauces and toppings you add, the more likely your kids are to run across an ingredient they don't like. So Bishop usually tosses vegetables with just a bit of olive oil. "Now and then, the kids ask to dip the vegetables in ketchup -- and that's okay with me -- but most often, they prefer plain," he says.
Show their sweet side. Roasting or grilling vegetables such as carrots and asparagus brings out their natural sweetness, making them more appealing to kids, says Bishop.