With the summer’s bounty of farm fresh produce hitting stores and markets, now is a great time to make sure your family is eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.
And, since June is National Fresh Fruit and Vegetables Month, it gives you even more of an incentive to add colorful, delicious farm fresh produce to your meals and snacks.
If you have reluctant fruit and vegetable eaters, you aren’t alone. But parents, don’t fear! You can get your family to eat more farm fresh produce. Here are some tips.
- Keep them ready to eat and visible. If fruits and vegetables are ready to eat and within reach of your children, they are more likely to eat them. So keep a bowl of apples on the counter, and keep cut up cucumbers and carrots in bins in the fridge with some dips (hummus, ranch, nut butter) nearby.
- Add to other food. If you are making meatloaf, shred in some carrots or zucchini. Stir in some tomatoes to taco meat. Or add a scoop of peas to chicken noodle soup. Your family will get used to seeing vegetables as a part of the meal, not something separate that has to be eaten.
- Fruit for snacks! Fruit makes a great snack – especially for little ones. Offer apple slices or cut up strawberries alongside cheese and crackers, or a bunch of grapes with some chips and salsa.
- Put a plate of veggies out for grazing before dinner. Children are often hungriest right before a meal, so just put a plate of cut up veggies and some dip out and munch on it yourself. Chances are, your little ones will dive right in.
- Get them involved in shopping for farm fresh produce. Many stores will allow children to select a fruit or vegetable to try while shopping, or you can do it yourself. Talk about eating a rainbow of food at every meal and let them choose a new fruit or vegetable to try each week.
- Let them help cook. Children are more likely to eat what they have helped prepare, so wash those little hands and let them snap the ends off green beans, tear lettuce for a salad or carefully slice tomatoes for sandwiches.
At Fresh Forward, feeding families is our passion. We work with local farmers to get the best, and freshest, produce on your family’s table. Ask your favorite grocery store, farm stand or produce market to carry Fresh Forward products.
Learn more about the Fresh Forward mission here.