If you want your kids to eat healthy, you as a parent should probably hone up your cooking skills; it is that simple and that complicated, studies have found. It may sound old fashioned but it’s developing good old fashioned cooking skills that could keep your kids eating healthy.
A study conducted in Liverpool, England reached the conclusion that attending cooking classes had the result of adults as well as kids eating healthy; having more proportion of fruit and vegetables in their diet.
One more study from the School Food Trust arrived at a similar conclusion when it was found that when kids learned how to cook, they were able to recognize healthy foods better and this led to a willingness to eat them as well.
While you may well agree with all of the above, it is quite another matter to come home after a day’s work and then make the effort of whipping up something that is healthy, appetizing and which won’t take hours as well. Here are some cooking tips that may help:
1. Remove skin
When cooking poultry, remove the skin. The part of the chicken and turkey that contains most fat is the skin.
2. Less salt
Salt adds taste to food, there is no doubt about this, but try and work with fresh spices or even dried herbs when cooking, to lower reliance on salt. This adds taste, flavor and fragrance, while lowering the harmful effects of eating excess salt.
3. Cook a larger batch and freeze portions
You can do this on days when you have more time, such as on the weekend. Then you simply remove the cooked meal from the freezer and defrost, so you’ll have made the effort once and had two or more meals out of it.
4. Think casseroles and stews
These are hearty all-in-one dishes that you can add healthy cuts of meat and lots of vegetables and even whole grains such as legumes to. Look for healthy recipes such as a turkey and bean casserole, a beef, barley and veggie stew or a chicken, veggie and rice casserole.
5. Tweak recipes
If you’re following a recipe from a book or using grandma’s delicious old recipe tweak it to make it healthier. Halve the amount of oil, cream or butter that is supposed to be used. If deep frying is indicated, try grilling or stir frying to get comparable taste but much less of the fat.
6. Look at your dressings
You may do very well to fix a healthy salad, but you may undo all your good work by drowning it in a creamy dressing. Go for vinegar based dressings, use chopped tomatoes and herbs to add flavor instead.