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Child-friendly veggie meals

(22 Posts)
PhoebeMcPeePee Sun 10-May-15 11:42:54

We're a family of big meat eaters, too much meat IMO so we've decided to kick start a reduction in our red-meat consumption by going veggie during the week but I'm stumped for meal ideas.

Last week for example we had beef lasagne, sticky ribs & rice, roast beef with all the trimmings, pasta with spinach & pancetta, toad in the hole, minestrone (with pancetta smile) chicken Katsu curry. It was all homemade but still, very red-meat heavy. DC are pretty good eaters but not keen on what they call slimey veggies like courgette, aubergine or mushroom so veggie lasagne or mushroom risotto (for example) would be a definite no-no.

Oh, and I'm a childminder so need a couple of big meals I can hide veggies for fussy small children & also prepare in advance & just bung in the oven.

Any suggestions?

SoundingBored Sun 10-May-15 11:53:17

Pasta bakes? Baked macaroni cheese or a big tomato/basil/garlic pasta bake topped with cheese, with garlic bread and salad - go down well in our house.

Veggie chilli with rice or jacket potatoes. I don't like quorn, so make a genuine veggie chilli (Jamie Oliver has a nice recipe).

Spanish omelettes? Frittata? shakshuka (a kind of baked egg dish in spicy tomato sauce).

Do your DC like root veg? I make a root veg stew with herb dumplings that mine like a lot.

Curries are great for cheap and cheerful veggie dishes too. My DC like my potato & cauliflower curry, chickpea and sweet potato curry and red lentil curry - all really simple to make, too. If your DC like lentils/chickpeas etc there are many variations of curry you can make, too, and you can serve with different breads (chapati, roti, naan) as a change from rice.

Stepping away from the veggie thing for a moment - do your family like fish? I buy the big packets of frozen fish pieces - cod, salmon, haddock etc - which are cheap and just as good as fresh fish for family meals. My DC love teriyaki salmon and noodles, or homemade fish & chips.

PhoebeMcPeePee Sun 10-May-15 12:01:51

Thanks that jamie chilli looks good and yes teriyaki fish with noodles would go down well. A decent pasta bake recipe would be handy too grin

CarolPeletier Sun 10-May-15 12:06:54

Veggie fingers, veg pie and mash, soya mince spag bol, veg skewers, veg tagine, veg lasagne, veg tart, mushroom stroganoff....

avocadotoast Sun 10-May-15 12:08:16

How are they with beans? Black bean and sweet potato chilli is always a winner - it doesn't need to be spicy, and the black beans have enough depth to them that you don't miss the meat.

Could you do some lighter meals like jacket potatoes with beans and salad?

If they like eggs then baked eggs could be a good idea too - something like this (maybe just leave out the chilli if necessary)

You could also make some fritters - courgette fritters are easy and because they're fried your kids probably won't know it's courgette grin

avocadotoast Sun 10-May-15 12:10:41

Oh, and you could also do pasta with different sauces, perhaps blended to hide the veggies. I've had this before and it's really good:

Make things in silly colours and give it a daft name (hulk pasta?) and little children love it smile

Pointlessfan Sun 10-May-15 12:16:58

Frittata always goes down well with my DD and lentil dahl.

addictedtosugar Sun 10-May-15 12:41:09

Why not start gradually, so put less mince in the sauce, and add in some (grated) carrot and courgette, along with some lentils?
Pasta with spinich and cream cheese? Butternut squash risotto? Tuna pasta bake?stir fry's?? Think there is a chickpea fahita recipient on Mon, which is supposed to be very good. Will carry on thinking.

addictedtosugar Sun 10-May-15 12:41:52

That recipient is on mn, not Mon!!!

addictedtosugar Sun 10-May-15 12:43:18

And this is why we need a 5 min edit button.

That recipie is on mn, not Mon

DoItTooJulia Sun 10-May-15 12:46:42

Spanish chickpeas with wild rice
Veggie biryani
Veggie toad in the hole
Cous cous and roasted veg
Jacket potatoes with any filling
Carribean stew with dumplings
Veggie curry
9 veg pie with crispy kale
Egg and chips (food of the gods!)
Lentil shepherds pie
Lentil bolognase
Spanakopita and salad

Lovewearingjeans Sun 10-May-15 15:33:49

My two DS 9 and 12 love cheese and potato pie with veg, baked beans on toast, pizza without meat.

littleflick Sun 10-May-15 15:38:50

What on earth is "child-friendly"? Children eat, you

lastqueenofscotland Sun 10-May-15 15:39:13

Make your own bean burgers? Very easy
I make them by wizzibg some kidney beans, salsa, red onion, breadcrumbs, eggs and herbs/spices of your choice in a blender, shape into patty and grill!

pregnantpause Sun 10-May-15 16:26:49

Veg based pizza - goats cheese abd red onion/ spinach and mozzarella/ rainbow pizza

Burgers/ balls- bean burgers, carrot burgers, courgette fritters( honestly taste a world away from slimy courgette) broccoli balls - there's a wealth of different veg burgers/ balls/ patties to choose from

Dhalls and soups with breads. My dc love tomato soup, and squash soup is loved- but only if I call it sunshine souphmm

Macaroni cheese.

Cheese and onion pie

Root veg pasties

Egg and chips grin

HSMMaCM Sun 10-May-15 16:39:50

If you have a meat craving, do a swap - veggie sausages in toad in the hole, quorn mince in lasagna, etc.

Onykahonie Sun 10-May-15 16:58:47

How about arancini...get the kids to help make them, if you can bear the mess!
I make a veggie chilli with red lentils, finely chopped sweet potato, peppers, mushrooms etc. You can always blend the veg in the tomato sauce if you need to hide them.

irregularegular Sun 10-May-15 17:03:58

My children's favourite "proper" veggie dish (as opposed to egg and cheese based meals) is Nigella's veggie chilli (google it) but I just do it with rice rather than the cornbread. I just had a bunch of 12 yr olds round and one was veggie so I made this and they all ate it quite happily.

I also think that to a certain extent you have to persist with serving things you don't expect them to like. Mix it up a bit and make sure there is at least some element that they will eat. I find they come round on most things eventually.

Footle Mon 11-May-15 08:28:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MilkRunningOutAgain Mon 11-May-15 22:18:53

Perhaps not particularly healthy but mine love Yorkshire puddings with baked beans and cheese, or with a veg stew inside. They also like cheese and sweet corm pancakes, you can do all sorts of savoury pancakes very cheaply.

chocolateyay Mon 11-May-15 22:20:22


PhoebeMcPeePee Mon 11-May-15 23:38:09

Thanks some great suggestions on here. In our first meat-free week we're trying: Jamie's veggie chilli, bean burgers, a Dahl, root veg pasties plus a pasta dish yet to be decided.

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