May is National Salad Month, and I couldn’t be more pleased because after the longest winter in recent memory (again!) I’m currently craving nothing but hearty greens topped with flavourful proteins. There are so many wonderful unique salad recipes and I love to mix it up! Sadly, my kids don’t feel the same love for lettuce that I do, and eating greens for dinner is not their idea of a delicious meal. Luckily for them, I’ve learned a few things along the way that have helped to make salad a meal the entire family can enjoy. To prove it can be done, I’m taking one salad and showing you how to get your kids to eat salad with tips for toddlers, school-aged kids, and tweens.
How to Get Your Kids to Eat Salad
Extract little bits of each salad component and present them separately on a plate, deconstructing the dish into a meal that’s visually appealing to the kids. In the case of our steakhouse salad, tiny pieces of steak and potato are served with sliced cherry tomatoes and cucumbers, and ranch dressing for dipping.
For School-Aged Kids:
This age group loves to DIT (do it themselves!) and having a say in which foods make it on to their plate guarantees peace at the dinner table. For kids of this age, layer the ingredients on a platter and have the kids choose three to five items, one of which must be a veggie. Round out the meal with a few slices of baguette, and everyone at the table is sure to be happy with this healthy meal.
Compromise is key with pre-teens, and this steak salad includes a lot of what the kids like (steak and potatoes) with a lot of what I like for them (greens, tomatoes, and cucumber). I find it easiest to serve salad for dinner to this age group when I take a favourite meal (tacos, paella, etc.) and break it down into small bits that are served over a bed of greens.
I’m curious, do you serve salad for dinner to your family? How do you make it appealing for the kids?
Here’s the complete recipe for Steakhouse Salad.