Healthy Family Meals

You want your kids to eat wholesome, healthy foods at every meal, but when you are dealing with little ones who would prefer to survive on a diet of string cheese and waffles, sometimes it takes a little creativity. These healthy and kid-friendly meal ideas will be a hit with everyone in your family. They're kid-tested and Mom-approved!

Oven-fried chicken

1

Oven-fried chicken

Who doesn't love fried chicken? This recipe for oven-fried chicken drumsticks takes a family classic and gives it a healthy makeover. Instead of frying your chicken in oil, bake it in the oven! You'll save on fat and calories while still retaining that crispy, delicious flavor. Serve with yummy sides like stove-top mac and cheese, quick and easy kale chips and mashed roasted cauliflower. This tasty meal will leave everyone at your table smacking their lips and licking their fingers.

2

Mexican fiesta

Want to spice things up around your house? How about having a Mexican fiesta night with some zesty grilled pork tacos, chorizo rice with tomatoes, beans, guacamole and homemade salsa. Your kids will love assembling their own tacos, which you can make even healthier by substituting ground turkey for ground beef and topping them with low-fat cheese. Use whole-wheat flour tortillas for extra fiber. They taste so good that the kids won't even know the difference! This recipe for homemade refried black beans is low in fat and high in nutrition. Need something to cool off after all those spicy flavors? The kids will go nuts for refreshing watermelon chia fresca made with fresh pineapple and lime juice. ¡Ay, que rico!

3

Pasta bar

Kids love pasta. It's one of the best comfort foods around, but traditional white pasta can leave a lot to be desired, nutritionally speaking. How about pulling a whole-grain pasta switcheroo and bumping up the fiber in your meal? Grill up some yummy veggies with a touch of seasoning and olive oil. For extra protein, toss some ground turkey or lean ground beef into your sauce. Grate some low-fat cheese and let your kids fix their own plates. Before you know it, they'll be scarfing down everything and asking for seconds.

4

Homemade soup

Do your kids balk at the sight of almost any vegetable? Don't give up yet. There are lots of great ways to sneak healthy veggies into all your favorite family meals. Soup is the perfect hideout. You can puree all kinds of veggies and painlessly sneak them into all your children's favorite soups without them being any the wiser. Try this recipe for chicken tortilla soup. To make it even healthier, make your own baked tortilla chips and top with Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.

5

Personal pan pizza night

Pizza does not have to be unhealthy to be good. Make your own homemade pizza and you can sneak in all kinds of added nutrition without anyone knowing the difference. Try making your own pizza dough and swap out some of the white flour for whole wheat. You can use a can of high-quality organic pasta sauce, or you can make your own sauce and even add in extra pureed veggies. Chop up and add lots of fresh toppings like red onion, olives, green peppers, mushrooms, pineapple, pepperoni, low-fat mozzarella and anything else your family loves. Let your kids make their own mini-pizzas. When given the chance to add their own toppings, they might even happily try a few new ones!

expert tip:

Want to pack even more nutrients into your daily dinner? Try starting each meal with a bowl of fresh salad or a cup of delicious, healthy soup.

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Comments

Comments on "5 Healthy (and yummy!) family meals"

Ctherese Pugel July 13, 2011 | 11:01 AM

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