Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Shhh! Don't tell the kids...

...not everyone eats their vegetables frozen.

When my kids were younger, and starting to eat finger foods, I would pack a small bowl of frozen peas with me when we headed out to run errands. It was a great snack for them if they got hungry while we ran our errands. They weren't messy, so I didn't have to worry about everything getting sticky. The cold peas also did a great job of soothing those inflamed teething gums, so there was the added benefit of having a not as fussy teether. I also didn't have to worry about them getting wound up from a sugar surge. Plus, there was no concern that they were snacking on something that would ruin their appetite for the good food.

When I would serve peas at dinner, I always warmed them up. Then, one night, my son requested that I give him his peas frozen. Now, many of the smaller frozen vegetables (peas, peas and carrots, and mixed vegetables) are requested in their frozen form. I don't mind. As long as they eat the vegetables, I am fine with it. Plus, I find myself fighting the clock with dinner prep and pouring a bowl of frozen vegetables to nibble one while dinner finishes cooking is a quick and easy fix to the cries of hunger.

Snacking on vegetables from the earliest days, I think, also helped them build a taste for vegetables in general and to view them as a snack item, not just a meal item. If I have a bag of cut fresh veggies in the refrigerator, the kids love to snack on them. He used to take cut up peppers in the car with him to snack on on the way to daycare. He loves celery and carrots - with or without dip. In the summer, the kids can hardly wait to eat our cherry and grape tomatoes fresh from the garden.

For other tips that work, check out Works For Me Wednesday at Rocks in My Dryer.


Sarah said...

You, know, that's true. I remember begging for frozen vegetables when I was little. I'm going to try this and see if my kiddos like it too.