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Recipes for Picky Eaters That Pair Vegetables with Foods They Already Like

How to Cook Nutritious Food for Picky Eaters and Have Them Beg for More


Cauliflower Twice Baked Potatoes

Cauliflower Twice Baked Potatoes

Mark Thomas/Getty Images
One of my basic tips for cooking food for picky eaters is to pair vegetables (or any new foods) with foods your picky eaters already like, such as potatoes, pasta, bacon, cheese or rice.

It's the age old spoonful-of-sugar-makes-the-medicine-go-down trick, but with vegetables and some fun new recipes.

If you think about it, you aren't taking away any of the vitamins, minerals, fiber or any of the other good stuff you find in broccoli or spinach, for example, just because you serve them with something the kids really like.

And if this is the first time you're exposing your kids to that vegetable, they're much more likely to develop a positive association with it over the long term than if, say, you made boiled broccoli and served it with no seasoning.

Here are some of my favorite recipes for picky eaters that pair vegetables with favorite foods:

  • Broccoli Mashed Potatoes Recipe - Creamy and satisfying, this recipe is a kid favorite. Add some bacon or cheese to make it even better!

  • Potato Croquettes with Vegetables - Mashed potatoes are mixed with peas, carrots and cheese then pan-fried in these savory croquettes. Kids love this recipe.

  • Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Spinach and Bacon - Mac and cheese lovers will adore spinach after they've tried this creamy, comforting recipe.

  • Broccoli Bacon Salad Recipe - This is one of my most-requested broccoli recipes - and for good reason: It tastes amazing. Fresh broccoli is paired with crisp bacon, crunchy peanuts and sweet, juicy grapes in a sweet and creamy dressing. This is a definite winner.

  • Mashed Cauliflower Twice Baked Potatoes Recipe - Steamed cauliflower is mixed with potatoes, cheese and bacon in these mouth-watering twice-baked potatoes.

  • Spinach Quiche Recipe - Spinach and mushrooms are bathed in a cheesy custard then nestled in a flaky pie crust in this savory quiche recipe. Serve this quiche for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

  • Spinach Pinwheels - Spinach and red bell peppers are mixed with ricotta and parmesan cheese, then folded into a flaky puff pastry for these tasty appetizers.

  • Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Hazelnuts - Brussels sprouts are shredded, then tossed with crispy bacon, maple syrup, hazelnuts and salty parmesan cheese.

  • Rice Balls - Rice is combined with pureed vegetables, garlic and cheese, then rolled in a crunchy coating in this flavorful recipe.

For more great tips for getting kids to eat vegetables, sign up for my free email course on Coping with Picky Eaters.

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