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Getting children excited about healthy eating can be one of the hardest challenges for parents! Some children (no matter how hard you try) just don’t like healthy food and turn their noses up at even the freshest fruit and vegetables.

There are some tricks to getting your children on board with healthy eating though – and one of the most effective ways is embracing recipes that children find fun and appealing. The trick is, to cook these fun meals, and include the healthy food. Hopefully – the excitement of the meal will distract them from the fruit and veg hidden inside!

So what are these magical recipes I hear you say? Well, I’ve compiled a great list for you to look through, so get reading! They’re all within budget too – so fear not, none of these will cost you the earth or break the bank!

Healthy Pizza!

Pizza is one of those great meals that can so easily be disguised as something much cooler than what it actually is! For kids, pizza is the ultimate treat food – so by making it healthy, you’re really latching onto something great. Hand-make the pizza dough and use whole-wheat flour instead of the processed white flour to start with. Then, use low-fat cheese and top with very finely cut vegetables. You could even blend the vegetables into the tomato sauce – that way the children won’t even be able to see them – but they’ll still be getting their 5-a-day!

Cheese on Toast

This is another good trick for those kids who love their comfort food and who need easing in gently to the idea of healthy eating. Choose some nice thick bread and again, some low fat cheese, but before layering the cheese on top of the bread – thinly place sliced tomatoes and basil underneath. The meal still looks the same – but it is a little bit healthier than before.

Spaghetti Bolognaise

This is another favourite amongst children, and it works with the same principle as the pizza trick. Simply make the sauce as you would have usually – but blend up a variety of vegetables into the sauce so they’re still getting their 5-a-day. This is such a great trick as it means the veg is completely disguised and goes unnoticed – so you’ll watch your children gobble it down quicker than ever before.

Serve up fruit with Dessert

Dessert is the best as it is fun and yummy no matter what you serve up and no matter what – the children are always excited for pudding! Serving up strawberries and cream is a great alternative to cake – and fruit salad makes a great sweet-snack if the children are after something to munch on aside from chocolate bars. Just remember to use a variety of fruits – as the same old apples and pairs won’t excite your child in the slightest.

Elle writes for chefsknivesonline – encouraging families and parents to not only cook well – but use the right tools when cooking too!

Earnest Parenting: help for parents who want their kids to develop healthy eating habits.