WAYS FOR YOUR FAMILY TO GO GREEN

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St. Patrick’s Day is the perfect time to turn eating green veggies into a fun event for the whole family. Dark, green leafy veggies help give kids the nutrients they need for growing bodies. So ditch the dyed-green cupcakes this year. These healthy, kid-friendly dishes are sure to be a hit.

Breakfast Ideas:

  • Green smoothie: Blend a cup of spinach, kale, or other dark, leafy green with a cup of liquid (try water, low-fat milk, or a milk alternative). Add a cup-and-a-half of fresh or frozen fruit and you’re done. Bananas, mangos, or berries taste great.
  • Poached eggs in bell pepper rings: These look like eggs in shamrocks! Cut green peppers into 1/2-inch rings and lightly sauté on each side. Then crack an egg into each ring, add a little water to the pan, cover and let the eggs poach.

Fun Snacks:

  • Edamame: These soybeans in their pods make the perfect, healthy snack. Steam or boil the pods whole, salt and pepper lightly, and serve. To eat, slide the beans out of the pod with your teeth and toss the pod. Fun!
  • Kale chips: Want something green to replace less healthy snacks? These nutritious snacks are positively addictive.

Tasty Sides:

  • Roasted Brussels sprouts: Cut Brussels sprouts in half and toss them in a bowl with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread them on a cookie sheet and roast at 400 degrees for 35–40 minutes. They should be crisped and browning on the outside.
  • Green rice: Cook brown rice in broth or water. When it is done, put it in a bowl and let it cool for 5 minutes. Then mix in lime juice, minced garlic, olive oil, salt, and chopped cilantro. Serve and enjoy.

Lunch & Dinner:

  • Green Mac & Cheese: Add pureed spinach to your favorite homemade mac and cheese recipe. To punch up the nutrition even more, swap out that semolina pasta for whole-grain pasta.
  • Veggie Pizza: Why not make a healthy pizza together? Start with a whole grain crust. And add plenty of green veggies for toppings. You could choose from peppers, asparagus, zucchini, spinach, or fresh basil. Get creative with it.

Veggies of all types give your family key vitamins, minerals, and fiber. So start a new St. Patrick’s Day tradition this year—put the healthy back in green.