What's a parent to do?

Make it Easy

Microwave sliced red peppers and onions (at a 3-to-1 ratio) with a little olive oil, basil, salt and pepper. Puree mixture and use for colorful sauce over pasta, grilled fish or chicken.

Saute 1 teaspoon of garlic in a little butter or margarine; add grated rind and juice of 2 oranges. Bring to a boil and simmer 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper; serve over cooked vegetables -- such as broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts or green beans.

Combine equal amounts of pureed mango and chicken broth, a little lime juice, and jalapeno, if desired, in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat for a few minutes. Serve with stir-fried vegetables or grilled meats.

Whip up a fruit smoothie for a quick breakfast or snack. Blend 1/2 cup non-fat or low-fat yogurt and 1/2 cup skim milk with one of your favorite fruits (bananas, blueberries, strawberries, melons or mangoes). If using unflavored yogurt, add a dash of vanilla extract and a pinch of sugar for extra flavor. Garnish with a strawberry or slice of carambola.

Combine orange juice with raisins or currants and a cinnamon stick in a saucepan. Simmer for a few minutes and add a few sliced bananas; simmer 2 minutes more. Top with yogurt and serve for breakfast or as a dessert.

For "star" pancakes, start with your favorite pancake batter. Place a slice of carambola on prepared griddle, then pour batter on top. Remember to serve 6 ounces of orange juice with this to get two servings of fruit at the first meal of the day. Flying star pancakes

Add pureed cooked vegetables ~ such as carrots, corn, or zucchini -- to ground meat dishes like meatloaf and burgers.

Put chopped vegetables into canned chicken or vegetable broth to turn those vegetables into soup. Getting children to eat vegetable soup is often easier than getting them to eat vegetable alone.

Add pureed or shredded vegetables and fruits ~ bananas, carrots, pumpkin, squash, prunes ~ to homemade muffins, cookies, cakes, and quick bread. Substitute 1/2 cup of vegetables for 1/4 cup liquid, or 1/2 cup of pureed fruit for 2 tablespoons of margarine or oils.

Dont be stuck on tradition when cooking greens ~ such as collards, turnips or mustard greens. Just saute quickly in a little olive oil. Season with chopped garlic, salt and pepper. Theres no need for long cooking times, which deplete vitamin and fiber content.

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How to get your kids to eat right!
Make it Fun Make it Quick Make it Easy School Lunch Ideas