As any mother knows, the first challenge in getting a child to eat anything is to get them to taste it. To this end, the savvy parent must construct school lunches with an eye to ordinary, pleasant tasting and healthy ingredients.
Finding a single recipe to fulfill these requirements might daunt some. Nevertheless, here are three, kid-tested recipes for your lunchtime arsenal. Incidentally, these recipes are time tested and proven with empirical evidence. On more than one occasion, I have had requests from my four children to make extra lunches for their friends with each of these recipes.
PB & Banana Sandwich with a Crumble of Bacon
This sandwich was a favorite of my youngest who found that grape jelly turned his bread into a disgusting abomination that was inedible. Instead, the main ingredients of this recipe do not seep into the bread. In addition, peanut butter and bananas are prime sources of all sorts of nutrients and vitamins without the added sugar of most commercial jellies. As for the bacon? Well, according to my kids and their friends, bacon makes everything better. I and the King agree. Thank you. Thank you very much.
Turkey and Melon Pitas with a Dash of Horseradish
My kids would brook no argument, they simply refused to eat salad at school. Personally, I love chicken salad with grapes on a bed of lettuce, but, I guess, it’s just for old folks. So, I retreated and came up with recipe. Sliced turkey from the deli with lettuce and some type of melon slices go on a pita pocket. Be careful, some kids are very particular when it comes to melons. One of mine will eat every variety except cantaloupe. He also won’t touch carrots or orange Jello. Go figure. Lastly, for your intrepid little ones, spice it up with a little horseradish and you’re set.
Three Layer Salad with Taco Chips
I tried the veggies with dip and the granola with yogurt but my kids just didn’t go for it. These foods are simply too bland for a child’s taste buds. Thus, Thursday nights became “Taco Night.” It makes no difference how you prepare the ground beef. The next morning, simply layer the taco mixture, some of the leftover beans, cheese and guacamole into a plastic, resealable container. Add a dollop of sour cream, seal and refrigerate. The next morning, put a heaping handful of tortilla chips into a separate plastic bag and send your darlings off to school. A guaranteed winner since no one else ever shows up to school with something this delicious.
A Final Thought
The essence of feeding your kids is giving them a love of all things culinary. Sometimes, this process takes time. Remember, their taste buds are not yours. Some children take to eating exotic foods like a fish to water, others will fight you for years. Work with them. When your kids get a little older teach them a few new tricks with these five recipes.