Healthy Lunch Series Tip #3: Make Edible Art

I hope you are enjoying this series of blog posts on making healthy lunches for your kids. If you missed the first two posts in the series, make sure to check out Everything Tastes Better on a Stick and Cookie Cutters Are Your Friend.

Today’s tip revolves around something I definitely struggle with: creativity. Making edible art may seem like something from Cupcake Wars, but you don’t have to be a professional chef or an artist to play with your food.

Take for example these cute little pepper sailboats (picture above) that I made from a sliced orange pepper, hummus and baked pita chips. These took minutes to make and required no more effort than serving them separately, but this creative design got my son to actually try hummus. He discovered that he likes hummus, but under normal circumstances, he would have never tried it.

My daughter and I made these butterfly apples together and this was a fun way to include fruits and veggies in a simple snack. I showed her how to put it together at home and she had fun showing her friends how to assemble her creation during lunch.

 

 

 

 

Another fun project your kids can assemble during lunch are food faces. Pack a variety of fruits and veggies to make the face and your kids will have fun using their creativity to put it all together.

 

 

 

 

 

I came up with this little trick one snowy day in January and have been using it ever since: Brussels Sprouts Snowmen. My kids love these and it is so easy! Just saute brussels sprouts with a little olive oil and sea salt and place three on a tooth pick. These stay together even in a lunch box and tastes good hot or cold.

There are tons of other fun designs you can make with your food. Visit Craft Gossip, Incredible Edible Crafts or Family Fun for more creative food ideas.

Do you have any creative ideas for making food fun for your kids? Feel free to post a link to your site, blog or picture on the blog! I’d love to hear from you!

 

Healthy Lunch Series: Tip #2: Cookie Cutters Are Your Friend

Welcome to day two of the healthy lunch series! As I posted yesterday in Healthy Lunch Series Tip #1: Everything Tastes Better On a Stick, I’m going to write a series of blog posts on packing a healthy lunch for your child for camp, school or picnic.

Today’s tip, Cookie cutters are your friend, makes healthy eating fun with edible art. You don’t have to be an artist to make these cute creations. You simply need a set of  cookie cutters and a little creativity.

 

 

 

My daughter usually eats the meat out of her sandwich and throws the bread away. This frustratses me not only because she is not consuming the whole grains she needs, but it is a waste of time and money!

 

Today I made her a teddy bear sandwich and she ate the entire thing (sssssh, don’t tell her that the bread was whole-wheat with flaxseed and carrots.)

 

 

 

I also married my two favorite techniques, food on a stick and cookie cutters, and created cute pineapple lollipops. I made a flower, heart and butterfly for my daughter and a train, bear and dinosaur for my son.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Invest in mini-cookie cutters, which are great for cutting veggies and smaller fruits. I used my Christmas mini-cookie cutters to transform bell peppers into gingerbread men, candy canes, Christmas trees and angels.

 

 

 

Just like adults, kids eat with their eyes first. If their food is visually appealing, they will be more likely to eat it. So far it has worked well with my two picky eaters. My daughter discovered that she likes red, orange and yellow bell peppers and my son asked me for a pineapple lollipop for his dessert last night!

 

Do you use cookie cutters to add dazzle to boring foods? Any photos or stories you would like to share? I’d love to hear from you!

 

Healthfully,

Stacy