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How to get kids to eat and enjoy vegetables

Birds Eye Vegetables teamed up with Nickelodeon star

Birds Eye Vegetables teamed up with Nickelodeon star Jennette McCurdy and came up with fun ideas to inspire young kids to get creative with veggies. Credit: Handout

Ninety percent of kids don’t eat the recommended amount of vegetables each day, so it's important for parents to encourage children to eat their greens. Fun at dinnertime and healthy eating habits are two ways families can help their kids get into a veggie routine, especially now with the school year back in full swing.

When dishes are presented in a fun way, kids are more likely to try new foods. So Birds Eye Vegetables teamed up with Nickelodeon star Jennette McCurdy and came up with fun ideas to inspire you to get creative with veggies. For example, kids are encouraged to play with their food: Give broccoli a mohawk, make a self-portrait of corn, peas and carrots or add veggies to an already favorite dish.

Here are five tips to get your kids to eat more veggies from Birds Eye:

1. Build little helpers. When kids are involved, they’re more likely to eat their creations.  Let kids help with shopping, choosing recipes, prepping and cooking of meals. Have them choose the veggies they want to eat for dinner (encourage a variety of colors and flavors) and which ones they want to pack in their lunch boxes.

2. Encourage play. Kids can create rainbows on their plate with veggies or make smiley face pizzas: Use mini whole wheat pitas as the base and let kids add marinara sauce, reduced-fat cheese and use veggies to make faces.

3. Use veggies in new ways. Make a veggie smoothie by mixing veggies with yogurt, orange juice and honey, or try a refreshing Popsicle made with  carrots and orange juice. 

4. Amp up the cool factor of veggies. Celebrate veggies and how delicious and fun they can be by always using positive words when talking about them.

5. Combine new veggies with a few simple ingredients to make familiar dishes. Kids love corn and peas served with butter and salt. Try expanding their palate by making pea guacamole, corn salsa or other unique creations that combine old favorites with healthy veggies.

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