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Hot Topics: Tips and tricks to encourage a healthy veggie habit

Jace Evans • Aug 16, 2013 at 2:29 PM

Tips and tricks to encourage a healthy veggie habit

By Jace Evans



“Eat your vegetables.”

Sage advice or a particularly unfair form of torture?

Many parents struggle to get their children to eat the veggies on their plate, but it doesn’t have to be this way.

There are many different tips and tricks you can use to ensure that your kids get the vegetables that they need in addition to developing healthy eating habits.

The website Simple Homemade ( http://simplehomemade.net/ ) suggests that when it comes to vegetables (and fruits) a great thing to do is to appeal to a child’s sensibilities. This includes playing games involving vegetables as well as teaching about them but also instituting and enforcing rules with your power as a parent. The website Summer Tomato ( hhttp://summertomato.com ) says getting children involved with vegetables, whether it’s picking them out, growing them or even helping to prepare and cook them, as an effective means of getting children to eat their veggies.

Of course, if you do have to resort to subterfuge, FoodNetwork.com offers a handful of ways to hide vegetables, including pureeing them into pasta sauces, putting vegetables on pizzas as well as making mashed “potatoes” that sub in cauliflower for the starch.

In the end really, vegetables will always be vegetables, and they can be boring to eat, no matter your age. McCormick offers some good ways at livening up the vegetables themselves that will appeal to your whole family.

One way to spice up your vegetables are, well, spices. Using different herbs and spice blends can give your veggies a global flavor that will break the boring monotony and enhance your meal. Another way to break up the monotony is by substituting boring greens with more exciting vegetables. As an example, McCormick offers this recipe that uses squash and carrots instead of greens for a salad.


Use a mandoline or vegetable peeler to slice the squashes and carrots into super-thin slices. This gives them a lovely appearance and lots of surface area to absorb the piquant herb vinaigrette.

Serves: 6


Italian Herb Vinaigrette:

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon basil leaves

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon black pepper, coarse ground

1/4 teaspoon oregano leaves


1 medium yellow squash

1 medium zucchini

2 medium carrots

1/2 cup thinly sliced radishes

1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion


1. For the Vinaigrette, mix all ingredients in small bowl with wire whisk until well blended. Set aside.

2. Trim squash ends. Slice yellow squash lengthwise into ribbons with a vegetable peeler or mandoline, discarding outside ribbons and core. Slice zucchini crosswise into thin round slices with a knife, vegetable peeler or mandoline. Slice carrots lengthwise into ribbons with a vegetable peeler or mandoline.

3. To serve, divide squash and carrots among each salad plate. Top with radishes and onion. Serve with Vinaigrette on the side.

Source: McCormick. For more recipes visit www.mccormick.com .


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