Healthy Food For Kids

Schools and colleges reopening post-pandemic: tasty, attractive and healthy foods for kids and adolescents

The year 2020 was not only harrowing for adults but also for all age groups including kids and adolescents. It was mentally distressing as children had no outdoor activities. As it was a completely new experience; the online classes, exams, submissions only added to the anxiety; both amongst parents as well as children. With the decline in the total number of positive cases in India and the subsequent advent of vaccines, it is almost after 11 months that schools and colleges have been instructed to reopen. While this may seem to be exciting for kids, the stress is however on the mothers for preparing healthy meals daily. Additionally, kids want meals that should be tasty, attractive, and filling; while parents need them to be easy and less time-consuming. Herewith are a few healthy foods for kids and adolescents to incorporate into their tiffin box:



For kids:

Paneer Stuffed Idlis
  1. Paneer stuffed idlis: Idlis are an easy, healthy, and tasty option and they are usually well accepted by kids of all age groups. Idlis can be made with a variety of cereals like ragi, oats, buckwheat, rawa, etc. Adding a stuffing to the idlis enriches it in terms of its protein value. In a similar manner, one can also make paneer stuffed dosas or appam balls. All three recipes are excellent sources of healthy foods for kids and adolescents that can go into their tiffin boxes. 
Khichdi ka chilla

2. Khichdi ka chilla: Khichdi may surely be disliked by kids; however, owing to the nutritive value it contains, it is ideal to sneak it into the daily routine of kids but in a reframed way. One such option is khichdi ka chilla. For making this chilla, one only needs to add vegetables (of choice) and a binder like besan (Bengal gram flour) to plain khichdi. These chillas are filling, healthy as well as a less time-consuming option. It can prove to be a great option for working mothers who can use leftover khichdi too.

Mini pesuruttu

3. Mini pesuruttu/ adai with veg toppings: Pesuruttu is a healthy chilla made up of moong while adai is a chilla made up of 3 dals — usually urad dal, chana dal, and moong dal. These chillas/ adai can be made on mini uttapam tawa to make it extremely quick. As they are made up of dals, they are proteinaceous and healthy. One can add toppings including vegetables and sprinkle herbs over it. Both these options are much favourable over packed biscuits and breads which if uncontrolled can only lead to childhood obesity. To know more about rise in childhood obesity during the pandemic period, click here


Palak And Corn Momos

4. Palak and corn momos: Momos can be made up of whole wheat flour or multi cereal flour or even healthy ragi and millet flour. For its stuffing, a variety of vegetables can be added but the addition of palak imparts healthy vitamins. A combination of palak with corn, onion, and capsicum can prove to be a tasty choice for school-going kids. Momos can be made into several shapes in order to make it attractive for kids. One may also add eggs to make momos richer in proteins for kids.

For adolescents:

Sattu Paratha
  1. Sattu paratha or mutter paratha with flaxseeds and garlic chutney: Sattu is roasted chana flour and this flour is used as a filling in the parathas. It is used along with few spices. One may or may not add onion. Also, if sattu aata is not readily available, one can use fresh green peas. It can be used for filling in the parathas along with various spices. With fresh peas, usually grated coconut and coriander are added to enhance its flavour.

Parathas are a preferred option among teenagers as they can be arranged neatly by wrapping them in foil. Flaxseeds and garlic chutney is an extremely tasty and healthy adjunct as it contains omega 3 fatty acids. Both these ingredients are good for heart health. It is also easier to carry it as it is much thicker in consistency than coriander chutney. Also, it is a healthier option over tomato ketchup as it does not require any artificial preservatives.

Grilled Sandwich With Choley And Palak Tikkis

2. Grilled sandwich with choley and palak tikkis: One can use multi cereal breads to make sandwiches rather than white breads. When sandwiches are stuffed with tikkis instead of just salads, they are more filling as they provide satiety. As adolescents need to spend long hours in colleges plus their traveling time, mothers should prepare items that provide satiety for a longer time. Choley and palak tikkis are extremely healthy and along with the addition of veggies like lettuce, tomato, onion, beetroot, and capsicum makes it more wholesome. Sandwiches are extremely popular among children and when given such a healthy twist that can be added into the list of healthy foods for kids and adolescents.

Sprouts And Vegetable Wraps

3. Sprouts and vegetable wraps: Wraps are a sophisticated version of chapati rolls. Wraps are mainly made up of chapatis or tortillas. It is preferable to use whole grain flour or multi cereal flours for adolescents to make wraps. Different types of filling can be added to wraps, right from potato filling to noodles filling.

From a health viewpoint, we recommend a proteinaceous filling that can impart good taste as well. Hence, a sprout filling with freshly chopped onion and cabbage can prove to be a great option. These wraps too can be folded well in a foil and served in the tiffin box in order to avoid any smudging.

Burrito Rice

4. Burrito rice: Burrito rice includes several vegetables like onion, broccoli, zucchini, bell peppers, corn, etc, and pulses i.e. rajma. It is an excellent cereal pulse combination. The addition of healthy vegetables improves the nutrition profile significantlyInstead of sauces with flowing consistency, one can add mashed potatoes to avoid making the tiffin box messier. Instead of the nachos as toppings, one can add sauteed vegetables like carrots, french beans, broccoli, and capsicum.

While it is important to note that the routine regime of chapati bhaji is also healthy for children; food recipes like the ones recommended above can add enthusiasm in kids. These healthy and attractive recipes can be used as healthy rewards for their accomplishments rather than other unhealthy rewards like sugar-loaded chocolates and desserts.



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