A well-rounded diet is essential to healthy eating, but what happens when your kids can’t stand the primary sources of protein? Worry not, because there are plenty of other foods that can ensure that your little ones get all the nutrients they need.
Before you begin to worry about your kids’ overall health, consider this: Vegetarians are happy and healthy folks, and they don’t consume any meat. So, rest easy knowing that there are other protein-rich foodstuffs available. In fact, you’ll likely find yourself loving some of these great products so much that you might just decrease your own meat-eating habits!
It’s easy being green
Green peas are a great source of protein. These sweet veggies are tasty and make for easy sides. However, if your kids prefer a less straightforward presentation, peas can also be easily incorporated into a variety of dishes during meal preparation. You can blend them right into pesto sauce or toss them into a pasta or rice dish. Plus, it adds a fun dash of color that will make the meal more appealing to the eye!
Edamame is available in a variety of styles, which makes this food item easy to use in any number of dishes. Whether you prefer simply boiling these soy beans and adding a dash of salt for taste or prefer the crunchy dried alternative, your kids won’t be able to get enough of these. Give your young ones a crunchy, protein-rich snack to enjoy at school by packing dried edamame into their lunch containers.
Take advantage of versatility
Quinoa’s been a big hit lately, making its way into salad bars and soups. You can enjoy this protein-rich food right at home and exercise your culinary creativity. Draw inspiration from restaurants and incorporate quinoa into salads. It’s the perfect opportunity to bust out the salad shaker and let the kids help out. Also, consider using it as the base for hot cereal in the morning. These crunchy seeds are bland in taste, making them incredibly versatile. Additionally, they’ll add texture to any dish, making it fun and exciting for the kids.
Go with the classic
Peanut butter is a great source of protein, and this childhood favorite is sure to be a hit with the little ones. To ensure that they’re getting as much protein as possible, look for products that use few ingredients. Avoid ones with loads of sugar, as this will negate a healthy lifestyle.
Pack some snacks
Skip the bags of chips when you’re packing the lunch bags in the morning. You can provide your kids with the same salty snack without the unhealthy side effects by replacing chips with sunflower seeds. Not only are these healthier, but they’re also high in protein. If it’s too boring for your little ones, consider whipping up a simple trail mix that your kids will love picking through and eating.
Explore new possibilities
Chia seeds are interesting – these plump up and take on a gelatinous quality when soaked in liquid. Kids who love exploring different food textures will go nuts over these seeds. These are bland and can easily be incorporated into a number of dishes. You can drop some into the kids’ oatmeal or yogurt. Invite the children to join in the fun and let them experiment with the culinary possibilities. Remember to store the dishes in sealable containers to ensure that they stay fresh.
There are endless protein possibilities for kids who don’t like meat. It’ll require some experimentation, but you’ll have no trouble finding one that the young ones love when you’ve got so many options!