Do your children love their green vegetables?
If they do, consider yourself lucky. Many children’s repertoire of green vegetables begins and ends with green beans. According to an article in Science Daily:
…only 8 percent of vegetables consumed by children in all groups were dark green or orange; fried potatoes constituted about 46 percent of total vegetable consumption.
One of the vegetables we’ve been trying to incorporate more into our menu is spinach.
Unfortunately, my children have such an aversion to spinach that if I even told them there was spinach in something they would shy away from that particular item. I do offer spinach to my children, and I sometimes DEMAND they at least try. I don’t believe mealtimes should be stressful, so I’ve had to get creative about incorporating green vegetables (spinach in particular). Recently, we’ve had to resort to trickery to get the spinach in, but after our latest concoction I don’t think I’ll have to trick them any longer!
Send your children out of the kitchen and tell them you have a special surprise for them. (Once they hear the blender running they know it’s something good!) We then made a big deal of sitting down and enjoying our delicious smoothies! After we had finished them, I listed the ingredients…. “strawberries, bananas, honey, ice, and SPINACH!”
You should have seen the looks on their faces! After they got over the shock and anger of being tricked they actually thought I was pretty cool. My guess is that they will request these smoothies for quite some time. These smoothies have also paved the way for a variety of other green smoothies I’ve been wanting to try with my children.
- 2 cups spinach (I bought fresh, but you can use frozen)
- 2 cups frozen strawberries
- 1 banana
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 cup ice
Place the spinach in the freezer until frozen, at least one hour.
Combine the spinach, strawberries, banana, honey and ice in the blender. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.
(Makes 4 servings)
** Be sure to add the spinach to the blender LAST. It just seemed to work easier for me this way.
Once you’ve tried the Sneaky Smoothies, how about some main dishes that incorporate spinach? A tried and true favorite in our home is Slow Cooker Spinach Chicken Alfredo. Once we even made Green Eggs and Ham Muffin Cups (in honor of Dr. Suess’ birthday) that both of my children enjoyed very much.
I hope this inspires you to get that spinach into your children!