For those with children, getting your kids to eat right is a goal of any parent. However, there are some people in the world who question letting a child become a vegetarian. I find that this option is one in which kids are going to benefit from greatly, as there are many health benefits to kids eating a vegetarian diet. And better yet, the younger that kids start with this healthy lifestyle, the more likely they are to stick to this lifestyle.
With this being said, let’s look at the facts:
- Those who eat a vegetarian diet are more likely to have lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels as they age
- The chances of obesity are decreased, which is a huge problem right now with children in the United States
- Some studies have shown that the chances of cancer are reduced due to how many vegetables and fruits that vegetarians eat
Why wouldn’t you want your kids to be reaping these benefits as soon as possible? The worries of not getting the proper nutrition with a vegetarian diet can be put to rest, as there are tons of food options that will ensure a safe and balanced diet.
Ideas for Meals for Children
If you are going ahead with the idea of giving your children foods that fit in with the vegetarian diet, then make sure that these are dishes that the kids are going to love. Just because your child is eating a vegetarian diet does not mean that he or she has to give up some of the childrens loved favorites. For example:
Use tofu hot dogs at a birthday party
Serve veggie burgers for a cookout
Have fresh, cubed fruits ready for snacks, along with a few carrot sticks
Serve soy milk to kids for calcium and protein
The list is really endless, and your child does not have to feel as though he or she are missing out on the foods that are out there.
Try These Recipes
If you want meals that are vegetarian, yet are still going to be kid favorites, you can’t go wrong with these options:
Southern Mac and Cheese
You will need:
- 1/2 pound of elbow macaroni
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 2 cups of sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 large eggs or egg substitute, depending on your diet
- 1 cup of half and half
- 1 small garlic clove
- 2 slices of bread, white that is torn into bits
Cook the pasta as you are supposed to, while cooking whisk together the cheddar cheese, eggs, half and half, garlic, sale and some pepper. Then add this to the drained pasta.
Take melted butter and combined with the torn bread in a food processor, until it becomes crumbs. Then put this mixture on top of the pasta, with sprinkled cheese. Bake at 350 until the cheese is nice and golden, about 20 minutes. And then serve!
Mini Deep Dish Pizza
You will need:
Pizza dough, either homemade or bought, separated into 6 pieces
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese
1 large tomato chopped
Any vegetables that you wish to put on the pizzas
Grease muffin pans with oil, then press the separated dough into these muffin tins. Afterwards, sprinkle the cheese and tomato onto the bread, then add your desired vegetables. Sprinkle more cheese and tomato onto the toppings, and then bake at 450 degrees for around 12 minutes. Kids will love these individualized little pizzas!