From the Archives: The Kids Are Home, Hide the Veggies!

This is, hands down, my all-time most popular post. It was also one of the most controversial, which surprised me . The comments got a bit crazy with people taking things to extremes (like the one person who talks about how dare I and other readers say you shouldn’t cut veggies up for toddlers so they don’t choke, which clearly no one ever said), but many are worth reading (note, there are a lot of them).

I stand by my stance than hiding vegetables by pureeing them beyond recognition and combining them with cheese or in sweets that otherwise wouldn’t call for them (obviously, zucchini bread is called that for a reason) and then pretending kids are eating vegetables is ridiculous, and teaches kids nothing about good eating.  I have no idea how some people took that to mean that if you cut vegetables up and put them in a soup or casserole I think it’s an issue. I don’t. It’s making the vegetables totally unrecognizable as vegetables and tricking kids into eating them by pretending they’re unhealthy foods  (and, incidentally, losing most of their nutrient value and usually adding a pile of calories  in the process) that is the issue. So, what do you think?

NPR did a story about what a great idea it is to get kids to eat vegetables at school by adding vegetable puree to the school lunch cheese sauce at lunch time.  There’s a whole movement, including cookbooks, on how to get your child to eat vegetables by hiding them in brownies, cakes, cheese sauces, etc.  I can’t even begin to express how much I loathe this entire idea. It’s faulty from it’s toes to it’s nose, it’s destructive, and it’s just stupid.” Read more

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