Vegan Dinners Made Easy and Kid-Friendly
How do you make plant based dinners easy for the entire family? It is not only about making plant based dinners out for mom and dad. Kid-friendly plant based dinners are just as important as it is an opportunity to introduce kids to a plant based diet and lifestyle. Plant based recipes should be fun and nutritious at the same time.
What Do Kids Think About Plant Based Foods?
Switching to a plant based diet for kids can be more difficult. It is easy to enjoy plant based recipes at home but it may be more difficult to follow through in school. A lot of schools still do not offer vegan plant based foods for kids who come from vegan homes. Should schools offer vegan meals? Of course, they should do so, but that is not going to happen until plant based lifestyles are more widely accepted.
How to Make Kid-Friendly Plant Based Dinners
Making plant based recipes kid-friendly start long before you set foot in the kitchen. Most families find it hard to find the time to adjust to a plant based lifestyle. It is about so much more than starting to cook plant based dinners. If you would like to get your kids involved, there are many ways to make them interested in a vegan lifestyle.
How to Get Kids Involved in a Plant Based Lifestyle
How do you get kids involved in making kid-friendly plant based dinners? Children of all ages like to grow plants and if you would like to involve all of the family in a plant based lifestyle, it could be a good idea to start from an early age.
Top Tips and Ideas for Kid-friendly Plant Based Dinners
- Find some easy plant based recipes that are kid-friendly, and that they can help you to cook. Kids love to get involved with cooking, and it makes eating the food which they have cooked even more fun.
- Get your kids involved with growing their own foods and monitor their progress. Kids just love to look after plants. When they find out they can also harvest them, and cook them, they will become even more excited about a plant based lifestyle for themselves. Many plant based foods can be grown in pots, and do not have to take up a lot of time. It may be a good learning experience for the entire family.
- Take the kids to the supermarket, and let them help you shop. Brightly colored vegetables are fascinating to kids. Buy some healthy bell peppers and show the kids how much fun they have with bell peppers. Not only can they cook them, but they can also hang on to the seeds and start growing their own peppers.
What Kind of Plant Based Foods Should I First Introduce to My Kids?
Kids love sweetcorn and potatoes. They also love to bake, so a good introduction to a kid-friendly plant based diet would showing your kids how much fun it is to make their own bread and muffins. Of course, sweetcorn and potatoes are not going to give your kids on all of the nutrients they need, but it is a good start. Baked potatoes can be made a lot of fun, and more nutritious as well, when you start adding different fillings, and most kids love them. Introducing the right foods may make the difference between a successful switch.
Store Cupboard Ingredients for Your Plant Based Dinners Made Easy
Plant Based Recipes for Kids
Plant based recipes can be low in pro-biotics which is what kids need to build up a healthy immune system. Sure, your child may have been breastfed, and that is great, but our immune system needs many different kinds of probiotics to function well. Before you introduce your child to a plant diet, it may be a good idea to find a probiotic for your child to take.
Switching a plant based diet is much easier for you when you are older, and if you would like to your child to switch, you will have to take other nutritional considerations into account. In fact, our immune system is being repopulated all of the time, but kids need to build theirs up. Many plant based main dishes do not include enough probiotics. Children who do not have enough probiotics in their diet are much more likely to suffer from allergies and asthma.
Calcium is another factor you need to consider as well. It is easy to assume protein will be a challenge when you embark on a plant based diet. In fact, plant based recipes are often rich in protein from grains. The micromineral calcium is far more likely to cause a problem when it comes to plant based recipes for kids. To help your kids to absorb calcium better, it is a good idea to give them smaller meals but make sure they eat more often.
Growing kids and teenagers have high nutritional demands and be feeding them smaller meals, you make sure they receive all of their nutrients rapidly growing bodies will need. Child obesity can be down to children not getting enough nutrition from larger size meals. As they digest the meal, the body realizes there is not enough nutrition, and the child will become hungry again. Yes, it is true, children and teenagers do benefit from snacks.
Kid-friendly Plant Based Dinners, Snacks and Vegan Dinners for the Entire Family
Plant based dinners made easy is something that the entire family can benefit from after a long day at work or school. Spending time cooking together will help to strengthen family bonds, give you a chance to talk, and more than anything, teach your children to cook. Over the last ten years, families have relied more and more on convenience food. With plant based recipes there is no need to do so at all. It is easy to prepare and cook, and stocking your larder with plant based food will not cost a fortune.
EASY PLANT BASED RECIPES FOR BEGINNERS
This is one of the easiest recipes ever, and your kids will love making it. And, it tastes just great!
One 15 ounce can of sweetcorn – mashed but not too smooth
¼ onion – very finely chopped
½ tsp of ground cumin
3 tbs plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 egg or egg substitute beaten
½ tbs of soya milk
pinch of salt
Mix all of the ingredients together until it resembles a thick pancake mixture. If it is too think, you can add more milk or soya milk.
Heat some vegetable oil in a pan and drop into tablespoons of the mixture. Just fry for a couple of minutes on each side, and you are done. Great recipe to serve up with a Garden burger instead of fries.
Health benefits of sweetcorn: Packed with vitamin B12, iron, folic acid and soluble fiber. Perfect for both plant based lunches and dinners
Perfect Sweet Potato Pie or Pasties
Pasties is very much an English food which seems to have started to travel the world in recent years. It very versatile, and can be eaten hot or cold. It makes a great kid-friendly based dinner. Make a batch and you can take them to work as well. This recipe calls for sweet potato but you can easily make up your own filling, and even some foraged plant based foods, are at home in a pasty.
The recipe makes 4 large pasties. Bake at 420 ° F for 20 minutes. Great dish to cook ahead and put in the freezer.
English Short Crust Pastry
8 oz plain or wholemeal flour
4 oz shortening
pinch of salt
water to mix
Sieve the flour into a mixing bowl, and add salt. Add the shortening at room temperature until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Slowly add cold water, knead together, place in a glass bowl with a cover and let the mix “rest” in the fridge for half an hour.
After the rest, roll out the pastry on a floured surface until about slightly thicker than a pizza dough. Use a small plate to cut out the circle of the pastry. Place the filling in a line across the circle, paint around the edge with milk, and fold the pastry together making sure the pastry is well sealed.
Sweet Potato Filling with Mashed Chickpeas and Yellow Peppers
This filling is packed with beta-carotene which is a vital forerunner to vitamin A. Beta-carotene can help to boost our immune system and protect our skin from sun damage.
1 large onion -finely chopped
1large sweet potato – mashed or chopped very finely
1 large yellow pepper -chopped finely
½ cup of chickpeas
3 ½ oz vegan cheese
1 tsp curcumin (turmeric) powder
Himalayan rock salt and pepper
a little water to combine
A top tip for this plant based dinner recipe is to bake the sweet potato ahead, scoop out the potato and just add the other ingredients. Canned chickpeas can be mashed and if you would like to add some extra flavor, consider oven roasting the pepper ahead.
This is recipe is also easy to make in larger batches using different fillings. Kids will love these pasties as they can be eaten any time of the day, and they can “invent” their fillings. Other fillings can including mushrooms. Some of those wonderful berries that you foraged can also be used to make a sweet pasty for dessert.
Serve your savory pasties with sweetcorn fritters and you will have a meal your entire family will enjoy.
Easy Plant Based Pizza
To save money, and to cut down on ingredients in your plant based larder, you can simply add some yeast to the above pastry, and you can make a pizza. Call it a Fantasy Pizza and your kids will love to make their own creation.
Buy a jar of organic tomato pasta sauce and spread a thin on your pizza. The great thing about a Fantasy Pizza is that you can use canned ingredients. Let your imagination run riot and add ingredients such as mushrooms, tomatoes, pineapples, olives, capers, cheese or whatever you may fancy. Cook for 15 – 20 minutes in the oven, and dinner is ready. Top with fresh herbs and vegetables from your herb garden. Once again, plan ahead and make a couple of pizzas for lunch or just cook ahead for other plant based dinners made easy. Invest in a ceramic-based pizza pan for even and fast cooking.
Orange Pasta Salad
A pasta salad is a great way to increase your kids’ intake of fresh vegetables. The truth is that not all kids like salad, but they normally love pasta. You don’t have to use an orange in this recipe, but it makes just a little bit more interesting.
6 oz past spirals
olive oil or nut oil
1 small orange segmented
juice of 1 small orange
1 red pepper
3 ½ of snow peas or green beans. If you don’t have fresh ones, canned beans would be fine.
A quarter of a mild small onion
1 tbs fresh parsley – chopped
1 tbs fresh mint – chopped
½ cos (Romaine) lettuce
Cook the pasta and allow to cool. Mix the oil and orange juice in a bowl, and season to taste. Stir in the pasta, and leave for a few minutes.
Chop up the rest of vegetables and herbs, and add to the pasta. You don’t want the lettuce to become wet and soggy, so it is best to add it just before you serve. Spoon the orange segments on top, and you will have a quick dinner salad which can be enjoyed with a lentil burger or homemade sprout burger.
Transitioning Family to Plant Based Diet and Introducing Kid-Friendly Plant Based Dinners
Plant based dinners made easy are both healthy and quick to make. Many of them can be prepared and cooked ahead, and spending a day in the kitchen prepping kid-friendly plant based dinners, can keep young minds entertained can be the perfect way to teach your children how to cook, and where food comes from. Let them make up their own plant based recipes and maybe even create their own cookbook.