For many parents, salad is the final frontier–something they really, really wish their kids liked (but alas, their kids just don’t). My strategy has always been to serve “Starter Salads” to my kids. And not for nothing, but that approach also worked on my husband, who now eats big salads nightly and orders them in restaurants even when I’m not there. (I get all choked up just thinking about it.)
Here’s another idea for getting kids to love their greens: Create a “dippable” salad. I got this idea one night when I was making Caesar salad (get the recipe: Lightened-Up Caesar Salad). As I was tearing romaine, my seven year old kept sneaking pieces off the cutting board. He especially loved the leaves at the very center of the romaine hearts–the ones that are small, yellow, crunchy, and sweet. I eventually put some into a little bowl for him, and off he went, munching away.
Who says salad has to be eaten with a fork, anyway? The centers of romaine hearts are the perfect size and shape for holding and dipping and can be served right alongside carrot sticks, peppers, cucumbers, and other raw veggies with a favorite dip. When you serve veggies in different ways on different days, you may just hit on something your kids love!
Here are some recipes for homemade salad dressings to make and serve as dips: