Although nutritional values should be your aim when feeding children, appearance plays a key role in the process. Incorporating fruits and vegetables into children's diet can sometimes be difficult. Picking visually attractive cuts and arranging them in fun ways can be the perfect solution!
Veggie sandwich with a happy face
This sandwich is a foolproof solution. In addition to being easy to prepare, it takes up very little space and is highly nutritious. Turning this normally unhealthy lunch into a healthy option is only a matter of changing its contents. Instead of cheese and cold cuts, you could try filling it with tomato, cucumber, carrot and even olives. Don't forget to add the happy face!
Little tomato and potato houses
No kid has ever disliked potatoes. They are the least resisted vegetables of all, and it's wise to use them to your advantage. They are great, for example, to make these "mushrooms" in the style of The Smurfs' little houses. Boil the potato until it's done but not too soft and let it cool down. Cut the stems and use halved tomatoes to make the roofs.
Fruit palm tree
Your food's looks can have an almost magical effect on the pickiest child. And none could resist this delicious Caribbean palm with a banana for a trunk, kiwi leaves and tangerine sand. A palm done with bananas, monkey's favourite fruit, is sure to start your kids' appetite.
Olive and tomato ladybirds
Ladybirds, ladybugs, lady beetle, depending on where you live, are one of the kids' favourite bugs. You can take advantage of this by making some vegetable treats in their shape. Cherry tomatoes are the perfect choice for the body, while their head can be done with black olives. This bite-sized ladybirds can be served on their own, or on a cracker.
Tomatoes and carrots noughts and crosses
Noughts and crosses is one of the most popular kids' games ever. And you can use that to your advantage when preparing food for your kids. This game of noughts and crosses can be arranged on a slice of bread or directly on the plate. The strips that divide the game can be made with fine slices of carrot or any vegetable with the proper length. You can use pieces of different coloured vegetables for the chips, or even cut them into crosses and circles to make a perfect replica of the game.
Monstrous vegetable pizza
There isn't a single child in the world who can resist pizza. Take advantage of that. Toppings are where you can get creative and the options are almost boundless. To make it even more attractive lay the vegetables in the shape of a monster's face and your child will be captivated by your cooking. You can use olives for the eyes, rough cut hard-boiled eggs to simulate fangs and tomato slices for the lips.
Tomato, corn and olive worm
Tomatoes will always be a staple in the diet of children who are just starting to add vegetables to their diets. However picky they might be, they'll hardly be able to resist this incredible worm. The body is made up of vegetable slices. You can even mix a few: tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, avocados and even potatoes are good choices. You can add extra details by using corn grains and olives to make the worm's face.
Animals are always kids' favourites. It'd be easy to arrange fruits and vegetables in the shape of a lion, but this watermelon hedgehog takes the resemblance to a whole other level. Take a watermelon and slice the upper fourth off. Carve out little cubes from the piece you took and lay them on top of the remaining piece. Stick toothpicks in every cube and fashion the hedgehog's face on one end, like in the picture. Your kids will be thrilled!
Cherry tomatoes are an irresistible treat for kids. And they can help you turn a regular, boring, grin salad into a dish they will enjoy with very little effort. Cut some leaves of lettuce to make a green background. The face can take any form you imagine. You can grab a slice of bread, like the picture, or come up with something entirely different, like making a smile out of cherry tomatoes, eyes from hard boiled eggs and eyebrows out of onions.
Owl sandwich with cheese, tomato and cucumber
Two slices of bread are the perfect to pack some vegetables in. Put thin slices of cheese, tomato and cucumber between two slices of whole wheat bread and cut them in the shape of an owl. You can fashion the its eyes with cucumber, and its little legs with carrot sticks.
Smiley face chips
Some commercial brands have noticed how well children respond to smiley faces, and have started making these chips themselves. It shouldn't be difficult to make them at home, though. Just grab some potatoes and cut them into thin slices. Then gouge out the eyes and mouth and fry them in cooking oil.
Tomato and cucumber boats
Halved cherry tomatoes can be the boat's hull, while a thin slice of cucumber and a toothpick can be the sail and mast. A variation on this recipe can be done with regular tomatoes. You can even hollow them out and stuff them with whatever you feel like.
Cucumber and carrot crocodile
Actual crocodiles aren't usually kids' favourite choice when it comes to eating. Making a crocodile out of cucumber, however, could grab their attention and get them to eat their greens for once. You can use the cucumber as a whole for the body. Cut the mouth on one end. You can cut the teeth out of the cucumber itself, or make some with carrots, like in the picture. Put some legs on it and use whatever you feel like for the eyes.
Asparagus and carrot butterflies
This is a very easy dish to prepare. You can use an asparagus to make the butterfly's body, and slices of carrots on each side will look like its wings. This is a healthy, quick and fresh vegetarian dish your kids will love.
Potato, tomato and carrot mice
This very original recipe calls for potatoes, carrots and peas. After boiling the potatoes, slice their tops off and mash them. Put the mash back onto the potatoes and slice the carrot to make the mice's ears. Stick the carrot slices in, along with the peas for the eyes. You can fashion the nose out of another piece of carrot. The moustache can be some kind of stiff vegetable, or pieces of noodles, as in the picture.