4 Tasty Recipes with Spinach
Getting kids to eat vegetables can be a difficult task for parents. But there are tricks we can use to convince children to eat their greens and even enjoy them. How? Read these tasty recipes with spinach to get some ideas.
It’s no secret that most children turn their noses up at vegetables. And many parents worry about the impact this has on their children’s health.
In some cases children refuse to eat their veggies because of the flavor, in others, the appearance. Whatever the reason, little ones tend to be reluctant to eat their greens.
There is actually a logical explanation for this. Both children and adults are attracted to certain flavors, especially those that are sweet.
We instinctively reject bitter tastes, such as certain green vegetables. This is due to a childhood defense mechanism which relates bitterness to “poison.”
However, there are ways to turn this situation around. One of the best is to use vegetables in tasty and easy recipes. Here are a few ideas.
4 tasty recipes with spinach
Our experience with food isn’t just about taste and smell. Other senses also play a role. Sight is undoubtedly one of the most important.
This means that, a lot of the time, the same ingredients presented in a new way will seem much more appealing.
And that’s what these tasty recipes with spinach do. The idea is to prepare this vegetable in a new and exciting way. Getting kids involved in preparing a meal also helps, by engaging them in the process.
1. Spinach fritters
First, cook the shredded spinach. Then drain it and squeeze out the water. Mix in 2 eggs, 2 oz of flour, and 2 fl oz of milk. Season to taste with salt and pepper and mix everything together.
Finally, form the mixture into small patties and fry them in oil in a skillet until they are golden on both sides. You can serve the fritters hot or cold, and they go well with any sauce.
“We instinctively reject bitter tastes, such as certain green vegetables”
2. Spinach gnocchi
Everyone likes gnocchi. This classic and comforting Italian dish is an ideal way to get more vegetables into your child‘s diet, without them even realizing. In fact, the green color of the spinach may even make the gnocchi more appealing.
To make this tasty recipe with spinach, first cook, drain and season the greens (use about 1 lb). Then blend the spinach into a paste. Next, boil 2 lb of potatoes (cook them with the skin on to preserve the nutrients), peel them and mash them.
Once the mashed potato is ready, mix it with the spinach paste and add 5 oz of flour. Mix to form a smooth dough.
Finally, form this dough into small pieces to make the gnocchi and cook them just as you normally would. Your kids are sure to love them!
3. Meatballs with spinach
This is one of the best tasty recipes with spinach, and also one of the simplest. Children can help cook these meatballs.
In a bowl, mix 14 oz of minced meat and chopped spinach. You can chop the greens by hand or use a blender. Break an egg into the bowl.
Place two slices of bread (without hard crusts) into a bowl of milk. When the bread has soaked up the milk, put it in the bowl with the meat and spinach.
Mix everything together, and then shape the mixture into meatballs. Dip these into flour, then into beaten egg and then into breadcrumbs. Finally, fry them.
You could also cook the meatballs on a low heat with some vegetable stock. You choose the sides (such as rice) and type of sauce.
Another tip: if you prefer white meat, you can follow the same instructions to make chicken and spinach meatballs. They’re sure to be a hit!
4. Pasta with spinach pesto
This is a great recipe with spinach that your child is sure to love. Why? Almost all children like pasta. Try it with this delicious sauce. Your kids won’t even notice they’re eating vegetables.
Here’s how to do it. Instead of making a traditional pesto sauce with basil, make it with spinach. Cook 7 oz of fresh spinach, then blend together with 1 oz of walnuts, 1 oz of peeled almonds, 2 oz of parmesan cheese and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice.
Once everything is mixed together to make the pesto sauce, season to taste. Cook the pasta of your choice. That’s it! An easy and nutritious meal to enjoy with your children.
Although these recipes focus on using spinach, you can try them with other vegetables, too. The most important thing is to add variety and nutritional value to your children’s diet.
You can also get kids involved in preparing these tasty recipes with spinach (always under supervision, of course). This is a great way to spend time together.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Agencia Española de Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición. Recomendaciones de consumo para la población infantil por la presencia de nitratos en hortalizas de hoja.
- Federación Española de la Nutrición. Espinacas.
- Lind MV., Larnkjaer A., Molgaard C., Michaelsen KF., Dietary protein intake and quality in early life: impact on growth and obesity. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care, 2017. 20 (1): 71-76.