Here, Have More Dessert

Back when I was an expert on parenting (before I had kids), I believed that my children would eat nutritious food because I would expect them to eat nutritious food.  If I needed to, I would tempt them simply by telling them all the amazing things that healthy foods can do for your body.

My first born further solidified my parenting superiority. Max loves sushi, smoked salmon, edamame and artichokes. I was convinced I must be doing something right.

veggiepops
Or I’ll hide them in your food!

Enter Hudson, my 5 year old sprite who could live off of nothing but cheese and goldfish. And admittedly, up until recently, he did. (Why picky eaters seem to only like junk is beyond me.)

All my clever (and not so clever) attempts a broadening his culinary horizons failed miserably. I began to worry about his health. I bought Flintstones Vitamins– won’t eat them. Gummy Vitamins– won’t eat those.  Liquid vitamins– No go.

Yet this week my cheese and carb-avore has eaten carrots, sweet potato, zucchini, cauliflower, flax, oats and, spinach without a single complaint.

How?

Well, the cauliflower was in pizza dough, the sweet potato and carrots were in the pizza sauce. Zucchini was in his morning muffin along with flax and oats. Flax, oats and walnuts were in his cookies (with a B-vitamin boost from brewers yeast).  And the spinach was for dessert. My 6 year old begged for more!

I can’t get Hudson to eat smoothies, but it dawned on me that I can get him into popsicles.  If the current green smoothie craze is working for adults then there’s no reason my kids can’t get on a green popsicle kick this summer. It took a little experimenting, but we finally ended up with winning combination; I sat back and smiled as my little guy happily ate his spinach for dessert.

So, I’ll keep trying to offer healthy foods to my picky eater (and he’ll probably keep gagging in response) but in the meantime I can at least laugh maniacally take some comfort during dessert.

Here are our first two veggie pops (which Max loved) and finally the Hudson-approved combination.

(I used frozen fruit because that’s what we had, but since these are made first and frozen later, fresh fruit works too)

Spinach for Dessert Pops
In a blender
Orange Juice
Small scoop of vanilla ice cream (this is dessert spinach after all but you could swap with vanilla yogurt)
TSP of vanilla
Frozen mango
Large handful of baby spinach
Blend it into oblivion (really, only healthy things have chunks, so no chunks allowed!) — pour into mold

Vitamin A, B & C popsicles
Orange Juice
One scoop of plain yogurt
Frozen pineapple
Shredded carrots
Blend into oblivion, pour & freeze

And…

Hudson Approved Purple Spinach Popsicles:
Strawberries
Blueberries
strawberry yogurt (I used Trader Joe’s Organic Lowfat Yogurt)
Apple Juice
Spinach leaves

I felt like there was enough added sugar from the apple juice & flavored yogurt but these are dessert pops, so feel free to sweeten this one up a bit if your strawberries are frozen (I find frozen berries aren’t as sweet).

Let me know how they turn out for you! What else can you add?

Any particularly delicious combinations to share?

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Sarah is a full time working mom of four boys. In addition to working and parenting, Sarah has also been seen as an actress on the Richmond stage (and screen).