Popeye wasn’t kidding: spinach really is good for you. It’s loaded with vitamins and nutrients and folic acid. Spinach is one of those green leafy vegetable that should be part of everyone’s diet. So why is it so hard to get your kids to eat it? Maybe it’s because you haven’t prepared spinach like this. Here are three fun ways to get your kids to eat spinach. Warning: There is a little espionage involved – we’ve got to do something until they’re old enough to appreciate the health benefits of this super food.
#1 Make a sweet salad:
Try making a sweet salad with spinach, fruit and a tangy dressing. Toss leaves of spinach with fresh strawberries, blueberries and pears and drizzle a sweet and tangy dressing of honey and balsamic vinegar. Toss in a few candied pecans or walnuts. This salad is really pretty and the fruit is the main attraction. Plus, the sweet dressing will have the kids gobbling up the salad without even separating the fruit from the spinach.
#2 Incorporate into other dishes:
Meatloaf, spaghetti sauce, egg frittatas, and pasta salads are just a few dishes in which spinach can be cleverly hidden. If your kids like spaghetti, add some finely chopped spinach to the sauce. Meatloaf is an even easier option: Simply mix the spinach in with your other ingredients and prepare as usual.
#3 Make a Green Smoothie:
Smoothies can be a wonderful, healthy meal, treat or snack. The key is to keep an eye on sugars and portion sizes. The best part of making smoothies is the way you can disguise otherwise unpopular vegetables and get them into your kids inside of a delicious smoothie. The key is the right combination – most of the time, the fruits will mask the vegetables. You can blend in spinach, kale, carrots, broccoli and beets as long as you have a sweet fruit – bananas, pineapples or berries – to carry the flavor. Here are a few of our favorite smoothie recipes containing spinach. Warning: Though you won’t taste the spinach in these smoothies, its presence will be unmistakable by the green hues of virtually any drink they’re in. The method for all of these is to combine in a blender. Add ice or addition liquid (milk, juice or water) to get desired consistency.
Banana-Mango Green Smoothie
2 cups of diced fresh or frozen mango
1 large banana, peeled
1 handful of spinach leaves
Pineapple-Banana Yogurt Green Smoothie
2 cups fresh diced pineapple
1 large banana, peeled
1 cup of chopped fresh spinach
½ cup vanilla yogurt
2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 ripe banana, peeled
2/3 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup spinach leaves
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon of honey
There you have it: 3 fun ways to get your kids to each spinach. Admittedly, it’s not the way Popeye would have prepared it, but they’ll still get all of the health benefits that spinach has to offer.