If your kids are anything like mine, getting them to eat what you cook for dinner can be tough. My preschooler is on a veggie strike and I never know what my toddler will deem acceptable at any given meal. With the holidays, and lots of cooking coming up, I have been trying to think of ways to get them to try new things.
I have noticed that when I get my kids involved in the preparation, they are way more excited about eating what they make. They are so proud and want to eat whatever tasty thing they made. Something else I have noticed is that if I can make the food or ingredient they don’t like, look like something they love, they rarely question it. So with Thanksgiving in mind, I took some of our family favorites, and put a Kid Friendly spin on them.
My kids love any form of nugget or tender. Plus, being able to hold onto the meat easily, is much better for them than trying to fight with forks, less work and mess for me as mama. Along the same lines of saving me time and mess, I did bake these tenders as opposed to frying them but you could do either! I purchased pre-cut Turkey Breast, and modified this recipe. These turned out really yummy and were kids (and husband) approved!
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon water
1 cup Cracker Crumbs
1 package (about 4 cutlets) Turkey Breast Cutlets
1 Heat oven to 425°F. Line cookie sheet with foil or parchment.
2 In shallow dish, place flour. In another shallow dish, beat egg and water. In third shallow dish, mix bread crumbs and cheese. Coat chicken with flour; dip into egg mixture, then coat with bread crumb mixture. Place on cookie sheet.
3 Bake 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until chicken is no longer pink in center and coating is golden brown.
Green Bean Casserole
So, as I said earlier, my preschooler is one a veggie strike. He doesn’t “like” anything that is green or called a veggie. Even when I was opening the can, he told me “Oh, I won’t like this because its green beans”. While we were making it, I let him be as involved as I could, and I kept reminding him that HE was making it. I let him choose which order he wanted to put the ingredients in, stir it up, and put it in the pan. We put it in a muffin tin, for something fun, and my son loved saying each cup was for a certain person in our family. I used this recipe, which was on the back of the cream of mushroom soup can.
1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 dash black pepper
4 cups cooked cut green beans
1 1/3 crunchy fried onions
1. Stir the soup, milk, soy sauce, black pepper, beans and 2/3 cup onions in a 1 1/2-quart casserole.
2. Bake at 350°F. for 25 minutes. Stir the bean mixture. Sprinkle with the remaining onions and bake until crispy
And last, but definitely not least, dessert! Now, it is not hard for me to get my kids to eat treats, but keeping them from going crazy on them can be. And often, dessert portions aren’t really made for little hands or tummies. So I took a spin on traditional pumpkin pie and we made these.
Pumpkin Pie Bites
These were super fun and easy to make! My son loved cutting the circles out of the dough, and we used that time to talk about the shape and count how many we were cutting out. As we were pressing the dough circles into the mini muffin tin, we talked about the texture of the dough and how we had to push down gently so it wouldn’t rip. I used a pre-made pie crust, which made it super simple. The pumpkin pie filling is a recipe that has been passed down in my family for years, but it is very basic. These little bites are so tasty! They were the perfect size for both of my kids and I kept sneaking them all night
1 can pureed pumpkin
3 large eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
In a bowl add eggs, sugar, spices, and salt and wisk until combined
Stir in pumpkin and milk.
Pour into crust and bake at 425 degrees until filling it set and crust is golden brown
And there you have it, A Kid Friendly Thanksgiving! You know I had to add some mashed potatoes, because they are my favorite and no feast is complete without them.
I hope this post gives you some ideas and has inspired you to get in the kitchen with your kids this holiday season! Happy Cooking!
About the author: Aryn is a Wife, Mama and Certified Lactation Counselor. She shares her musings on motherhood, passion self love, breastfeeding tips, along with her favorite products on her blog. You can follow her daily adventures on Instagram