June 18, 2024
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Celebrate with Healthy Treats For Kids

You can go the junk food route to make kids happy, but in an era of obsession about obesity, some parents prefer to do away with old standbys like pizza, burgers and fries and trade them off for organic veggie dishes and foods with less saturated fats. Some ideas, adapted from the net might help:

Fruit Skewers and Yogurt Dip

Tiny fruit skewers with yogurt dip are a fun party food that kids (and adults) can enjoy. To assemble the tiny fruit skewers purchase plastic colorful toothpicks and thread fruit on them. Fruit can include any color seedless grapes, honeydew balls, cantaloupe balls, watermelon balls, small cubes of pineapple, and slices of Clementine oranges. The yogurt dip is simply Low-Fat Vanilla yogurt, but check the sugar contents on each brand of yogurt before you decide which one to buy for your dip, some yogurts can have very high amounts of sugar!

Mini Bean Burritos

Beans are a great source or protein, and mini-bean burritos are a great tiny party treat! To make the mini-bean burrito’s you’ll need to purchase black beans, 2% blended cheese, whole wheat tortillas, and 4 different colored bell peppers. First, cook the beans according to the package directions. Then drain the beans and puree in the blender, but make sure the bean mixture is still fairly thick. After preparing the bean mixture cut the whole-wheat tortillas in half and place about two tablespoons of bean mixture onto each tortilla half. Top with one tablespoon of 2% blended cheese, and one slice of each color bell pepper. Roll the burrito up and use a dab of bean mixture to keep it closed. Then grill the tiny burritos in a little bit of cooking spray on a non-stick skillet to keep them from falling apart while being eaten!

Veggie “Flowers”

Most kids won’t go for a vegetable tray at a party, but they might be more willing to eat their vegetables if they are set out creatively! Design vegetable flowers made of carrot sticks, celery sticks, cherry tomatoes, raw broccoli, and raw cauliflower. Design each flower on a separate kid-sized plate, and set a small cup of low-fat ranch dressing in the middle for dipping. Kids may be much more willing to eat the vegetables at the party if they each have their own little “flower” complete with their own portion of dip!

Pretzel-Coated Chicken “Strips”

While regular chicken strips are usually fried and therefore laden with fat, pretzel-coated Chicken “Strips” are a more healthy yet party-friendly option. Cut boneless, skinless chicken breast into strips and dip into one egg white mixed with water. Then dip into crushed pretzels to coat. Bake the chicken strips in the oven at 375 for about 30 minutes or until cooked, and serve with honey-mustard dip or organic ketchup.

Mini Burgers Made Healthy

Mini Burgers are great party fare, but they usually aren’t healthy! To boost the health component of kid-friendly mini-burgers use either lean hamburger meat and grill it, or use veggie burgers. Use whole wheat buns cut into four pieces and top the mini-burgers with fresh tomatoes and lettuce. If you want to serve the mini-burgers with fries for your party, stick to fresh-cut baked sweet potato fries.

Turkey Meatballs N’ Marinara

Meatballs are a kid favorite, and turkey meatballs are no exception! The best part about turkey meatballs is that they are naturally lean, and you can sneak cut-up veggies into the recipe without them being noticed. Once you’ve found a great recipe for turkey meatballs, just add cut up cooked pieces of carrots, green beans, and even broccoli.

Bean Nachos (Serves 2)

Ingredients:

1 teaspoon water

½ small onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, crushed

2 teaspoons taco seasoning mix

¾ cup tomato pasta sauce

1 x 300g can red kidney beans, drained

1/3 cup cheddar cheese, grated

2 x 50g packet corn chips

Sliced avocado and fresh herbs to garnish

 

Method:

1. Place water, onion, garlic and taco seasoning mix in a shallow microwave-safe dish. Cover; cook on high for 2 minutes. Stir in tomato pasta sauce and red kidney beans. Cover; cook on high for approximately another 2 minutes, stirring halfway through cooking, or until heated through. Sprinkle with grated cheddar cheese; cook on high for a further 30 seconds, or until melted through.

2. Divide corn chips between two plates; spoon nachos over top. Garnish with sliced avocado and fresh herbs.

By Jeanette Friedman

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