May 14th, 2013

{VIDEO} Get kiddo excited about veggies away from the pressures of mealtime

There’s so much talk these days about how to get kids to eat vegetables, but not a whole lot about how to get them to love veggies. (You know, eventually.) This whole teaching kids to eat healthy thing is not just about getting nutrients down the gullet. After all, we could do that with supplements and protein shakes. It’s really about fostering a love of healthy food that will sustain them over the course of their lives. And, sometimes, it’s easier to do that while away from the pressures of meal time.

Watch my latest video to get my three favorite tips for how to inspire veggie love. They are foolproof: there’s no way any of these will end in tears over green beans. I promise. You can also get my reading list after the jump.

Part of encouraging a love and understanding of food away from the table is about cultivating a family food culture. A family’s food culture is the way that everyday interactions with food shape the way a family thinks about food and their emotional connection to food. While not everybody is aware of it, every family has a food culture and it is either working with or against your parenting strategies at the table.

If you hope that your children will eat their veggies at the table, then find ways to celebrate veggies even while way from the table. Here are some books that can help you do that.

Add your favorite book picks, too!

First Books

Pancakes, Pancakes by Eric Carle
Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert
Jamberry by Bruce Degen
I Eat Fruit! (and other books in the Things I Eat Series) by Hannah Tofts

Toddler and Preschool

Yum Yum Dim Sum (and other books in the World Snacks series) by Amy Wilson Sanger
The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss
Bee-bim Bop! by Linda Sue Park
Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes by Mollie Katzen
An Egg is Quiet and A Seed is Sleepy by Dianna Hutts Aston
How My Parents Learned to Eat by Ina Friedman
Pete’s A Pizza by William Steig
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey

Five- to Eight-Years-Old

Who Eats What? by Patricia Lauber
Stone Soup by Marcia Brown
In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak
Everybody Bakes Bread by Norah Dooley
Where Does Food Come From? by Gary Goss
How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World by Marjorie Priceman
I Will Not Ever Never Eat a Tomato by Lauren Child
The Tortilla Factory by Gary Paulsen
Let’s Eat: What Children Eat Around the World by Beatrice Hollyer

35 Responses

  1. How cool is this, Stacie! I love your video and will be sharing it. And great list of books as well. For baby- you have to check out ‘The Little Composter’ – it’s Clara’s current favorite and is pretty cute.

  2. Phillip says:

    What awesome ideas! I will definitely try these on my boys. Thanks for a great blog

  3. One Hungry Mama says:

    Glad you guys like! And, thanks for the suggestions, Aimee. I can’t wait to check out “The Little Composter” – so cute!

  4. Kasie says:

    What a beautiful, fun and well done video!! So glad to have found you through simple bites :) my biggest success lately with our boys (3 and 5) is that they LOVE the juicer. I have an awesome champion masticating juicer that really crunches and almost sound like it is chewing the veggies. The boys love watching and hearing it. Every Saturday Morning we make juice together. I tell them they can pick out the veggies and they love planning over the week what will be the next juice. I cut up the veggies and they feed them into the juicer. Then we sit outside and drink their creation together.

  5. One Hungry Mama says:

    Thank you, Kasie!! So glad that you found me, too. (And I’m also a fan of Aimee and her Simple Bites crew!) I love my new juicer, too. My little one is super into helping, but he’s still only wanting to drink carrot orange. He’s happy to juice kale and beets for me, but he won’t take a sip… yet! :-)

  6. Robin says:

    One my families favorite food books is:
    The Vegetables We Eat by Gail Gibons. It’s appropriate for older preschool and young elementary and classifies all the different types of vegetables and different ways they can be grown.

  7. One Hungry Mama says:

    That’s a great one, Robin! Thanks for adding it to the list.

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