As any parent would know, feeding a family can be a tricky balance. On one hand you have their health to consider, and on the other, you have a never-ending list of foods they refuse to eat.
Let’s take a look at some simple strategies that can covert your meal-time ‘battleground’ into meal-time joy.
Also read: How to Create a Healthy Kids’ Party
Top Tips for Feeding Your Family
1. Menu selections
Try creating a list of meals that you would like to make during the week, including some options that you know will appeal to your family members. Allow each member in the family to choose one or two meals to be included that week, so they feel involved in what’s being eaten that week.
2. Create your own
At 12WBT we have loads of meals that family members can ‘create’ themselves. Foods like our healthy wraps/burritos and pizzas can allow the kids to get in and ‘create their own’ version exactly as they would like. Provide plenty of wholesome plant foods that can be used to top a pizza or stuff a wrap! See our free 12WBT recipes below.
Growing kids and active males are going to need some extras on their plates to ensure they are getting enough fuel for their energy requirements. You can do this simply by including some homemade vegetable wedges (potato, sweet potato, carrots), some mashed avocado (guacamole), a scoop of brown rice, a hard boiled egg or even some mashed sweet potato to their plates. The adult males can add a little extra protein (meat, chicken, fish, nuts or egg) to their plates, too.
4. Busy family survival list
There are times when every family hits periods of conflicting schedules. Here are some simple ‘emergency’ suggestions for those hectic times.
- Have ready-made meals prepared and frozen ahead of time; casseroles, soups and hot pots are particularly useful. Have a look in the Recipe Index for our ‘freezable meals’.
- Buy a supermarket roast chicken and salad mix that is already prewashed and prepared for a fast, no fuss meal. Remove the chicken skin and make good use of the lean meat.
- Have quick meals in mind such as boiled eggs or baked beans on wholegrain toast, with a side of frozen vege or prewashed salad for those times when you need a meal but have little time.
- Put roughly chopped vegetables and lean meat/chickpeas into a slow cooker early in the day with some stock/tinned tomatoes/curry combinations for a warm meal ready by night.
- Create meals like frittatas that can be eaten hot or cold, or can be packed into transportable lunchboxes for outings.
- Keep your fruit basket well stocked and have yoghurt, nuts, vege sticks and hummus on hand for healthy snacks during the day.
Free 12WBT Recipe: Sweet Potato & Roast Capsicum Pizza
Depending on family size, create two to three of these so everyone can have at least three slices. This recipe serves 2.
- 100g sweet potato, thinly sliced
- 1g olive oil Spray
- 2 pieces wholemeal pita bread (80g)
- 2 tablespoons passata (40g)
- 1 cloves garlic (3g), crushed
- 80g chargrilled capsicum, thinly sliced
- 100g reduced fat ricotta, crumbled
- 1/4 cups basil leaves (10g)
1. Preheat a barbecue grill or chargrill over medium high heat. Spray sweet potato with oil and chargrill for 3 minutes each side or until golden and tender.
2. Preheat oven to 180°C. Line 2 baking trays with non-stick baking paper and place pita bread onto trays.
3. Combine passata and garlic and spread over pita breads. Top with sweet potato, capsicum and ricotta. Lightly spray with oil.
4. Bake pizzas for 15 minutes or until ricotta is golden and base is crisp. Sprinkle basil over to serve.
- For a topping alternative, sprinkle over some finely chopped red onion instead of basil.
- Be sure to check the serving size of the pita breads as there can be variations between products.