With my daughter’s birthday (7) approaching in a couple of days, I asked her if she’d like to bring cupcakes to her ballet class and share with her friends. (My daughter is a bit unusual child when it comes to her eating habits and prefers fruits over candy and may pick steamed broccoli over french-fries for her side dish). After thinking for a few seconds, she responded that instead of cupcakes she’d rather bring baby carrots! I had to giggle imagining the disappointed children’s faces when we show up with a veggie tray.
I put some thought into this whole Kids Party planning thing and concluded that my daughter was right. There was no reason to have to serve the traditional cupcakes with overly sweet icing and sprinkles on top! There are actually many ways to serve veggies and fruit in a fun, non-traditional way, to keep kids interested in eating them. (Whoever said not to play with your food was a fool!) We ended up making little fruit cups and they were a big hit among teachers, parents and most importantly, the children!
Here are a few tips for your next celebration, family reunion or even a pool party:
Cut watermelon into triangle, pizza – like slices. Place them on a plate and using a toothpick, decorate them with any type of fruit you have. The more colorful each slice, the more likely the children are to pick it up! You can also separate the washed fruits into bowls and allow children to decorate the slices on their own! Cookie cutters work great on bigger pieces of fruit or veggies such as cucumber.
Apple Fruit Cups
Cut off the top of an apple. Carve out the core. Sprinkle some lemon juice on the inside of each apple cup to prevent them from browning. Fill with other fruits, such as berries, cherries or cubed bigger fruits. You can also fill them up with trail-mix. Turn the cut off piece into a flower/sun like shape by cutting off little pieces around its edge. Using a toothpick, attach the “flower slices” to the side of the apple cup. (To prevent the apples from rolling on its side while working AND while serving, place the apples on a cupcake baking sheet!)
photo credit / Duke Morse Photography