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The Lazy Mom’s Guide To Getting Kids to LIKE Their Vegetables by Colleen Lindstrom

Let’s face it; there isn’t a kid in the world that doesn’t like fruit. Fruit is like healthy dessert, and at my house, it’s the sweetest thing my kids ever get their lips around.  Fruit is where it’s at! Vegetables, now that’s the real challenge.

Laid back mom, reporting for duty. So, you want to get your kids to like their vegetables? Yeah, me too.  Can I tell you a secret? They will, someday. I promise.  It may not be today, though. Can you live with that?

I want to tell you a story about a kid who didn’t like vegetables.  In fact, he hated them. He called Caesar salad a vegetable, and he started liking that (drenched in an inch of dressing – as in, “would you like some salad with that bowl of dressing?”) every once in a while. Other than that, if it was green naturally, it was a no go. Shamrock shake? Yes. Broccoli? No way.

When he was 22 years old, he started dating a woman who ordered asparagus one evening at dinner. She requested that he give it a taste.  He loved it. His love affair with vegetables began then. He wanted to roast them, steam them, grill them, eat them raw, whatever.  He even jumped on the CSA bandwagon and started eating vegetables he’d never seen or heard of before as fresh from the ground as ever. Sure, it took 22 years, but it was well worth the wait.

That kid who didn’t like vegetables, that’s my husband.  To be fair, I think 22 years is an awfully long time to wait to discover that you truly love vegetables, but for him, that’s how long it took.  The good news is, he got there! When I’m in the midst of a pulling out the hair moment with my own children who are offered vegetables regularly (and teased into eating them when they refuse), I remember that.  They are healthy children, aside from a couple hearing (and listening) problems. They are doing JUST FINE.

For me, the battle of trying to force veggies on the kids is not worth the chance that they will actively hate them as an experiment in control.  My motive, the LAZY mom’s motive, keep putting them in front of them, requesting that they try a bite, and not pushing it when they give me the dramatic, “I’m gonna puke right now, you cruel, cruel woman” look.  I am confident that if I can’t get them to eat their veggies straight up someday, that they will find a lovely friend or potential spouse who will show them how amazing a green bean can be.  Until then, I will continue to sneak pureed whatever into their pancakes (and laugh maniacally in my head).

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