Cooking Healthy With Your Kidsby ModernMom Staff
Cooking with your kids is not just about having fun, entertaining them so they're not bored, or encouraging them to help out around the house. (Although it does all of these things!) Cooking with your children also teaches them the importance of eating foods that are healthy for their growing bodies and minds, and shows them that it's easy (not to mention fun!) to cook food rather than throw a pre-packaged meal in the microwave. Remember, teaching them these important lessons now sets them up to maintain a healthy lifestyle later in life!
Cooking and eating together as a family has many benefits. Here are just a few:
1. Research shows that kids who eat dinner with their families at least five times a week are more likely to have better grades than those who don't. And that's regardless of gender, family structure, or economic status!
2. Eating in a family setting frequently makes it easier for parents to develop strong relationships with their children and spot behavioral changes in them, which can be signs of tobacco, alcohol, or illegal drug use.
3. Build confidence in your middle schooler by telling stories at the dinner table. Research indicates that those whose parents share anecdotes with them have higher self-esteem and get along better with their peers during their teenage years.
4. Families who watch TV while eating dinner together tend to have poorer diets than those who dine together around a table. So gather everyone up and be automatically healthier!
Cooking together is a natural precursor to eating together, so don't be shy to mention the idea. In fact, if you have young children, make it a habit! Here are some meals from Libby's that are healthy, as well as quick and easy to prepare for a family dinner. Check them out here! And don't forget to check out Libby's Jingle Contest. Recreate the iconic Libby's jingle for a chance to win $10,000!
Colorful Chopped Salad
Frittata with Peas and Potatoes
Hearty Corn Bisque
Italian Sausage, Green Bean and Garbanzo Soup
Kicked-Up Mac & Cheese
Mexican Tortilla Soup
Southwestern Hash in a Hurry
Teriyaki Stir-Fry Bowl