The basic idea is to have lots of options for what people can add to their plate, and put them all on the table. Sort of like a buffet but everything is right there in front of you. The sky is the limit on what kinds of meals you could put together along these lines, but here are our top 3 favorites at the moment:
This is a great way to eat lots of veggies. So colorful and perfect for warmer weather!
Ingredients: at least 1 leafy green
several chopped vegetables
other toppings: fruit, cheese, nuts, hard boiled egg, bacon bits, beans...
I usually pick either the savory or sweet side and stick with those to avoid getting too weird. For sweet salads, berries, feta cheese, nuts or seeds, and vinaigrette make a great combination. For savory, hard boiled eggs, shredded cheddar cheese, black beans, and bacon bits work well together. Our favorite veggies at the moment include bell pepper, cucumber, carrot, corn, avocado, and spinach.
So much fun. Use scrambled eggs instead of meat to make it for breakfast!
Ingredients: tortillas (we use the flour fajita ones)
meat (chicken, ground meat, shrimp, steak, fish, or even scrambled eggs)
vegetables (avocado, canned corn, black beans, spinach, bell peppers...)
I love this meal because I can keep most of the ingredients on hand. One thing I have learned is to let my toddlers eat it however they want and not try to show them how to roll up their tortilla (unless they ask). One of my girls puts everything on a tortilla, then eats it all with a fork and eats the tortilla by itself at the end. Whatever floats your boat, I guess!
We do this most often with french toast, actually, or you could do the same with waffles.
Ingredients: pancakes/waffles/french toast
fruit (berries, mango, banana, kiwi...)
spreads (peanut butter, jellies/jams, butter, cream cheese)
other toppings: whipped cream, cinnamon sugar, bacon bits, chocolate chips, nuts
This is something that probably almost every family in North America has from time to time, but the fun is in coming up with new toppings to try (and combinations of toppings!). One of my toddlers pulled cream cheese out of the fridge one time- you guys, cream cheese is amazing on french toast! I don't know why it isn't a staple pancake topping already but it is great with fruit and nuts.
What meals have you tried to make meal time more interactive for the whole family?