The other day my 4-year-old daughters and I were snowed in so I had a chance to be a little more creative with our lunch. It was so much fun and it was quite healthy too. I can guarantee we will be doing this again!
To be honest the meal started out because I was rummaging through the fridge to try to find something for us to eat- I was way overdue for a grocery store trip! I always keep a bunch of produce on hand for the girls lunch boxes, and when I started pulling things out to eat I realized that I had enough colors to almost make a rainbow! When I spied the tuna I had made up earlier, I knew we had a winner. It was easy to cut up some fruit and vegetables, threw some tuna on one side of each plate, and arranged everything else in rows in rainbow order. I used tuna for the cloud, and red bell pepper, carrot, banana, sugar snap peas, and raising for the rainbow.
Here are some options that I've thought about for doing this again. I'm sure you can come up with other awesome twists too.
Cloud: egg salad, bread, rice, pasta, mashed potato, crackers, hard boiled egg, cheese
Red: red bell pepper, raspberries, strawberries, tomatoes, beets
Orange: carrots, sweet potatoes, tangerine/clementine/orange, butternut squash, orange bell pepper
Yellow: banana, corn, yellow bell pepper, pineapple, mango, grapefruit
Green: green beans, peas, spinach, celery, cucumber, broccoli, zucchini, kiwi, avocado
Blue/Purple: raisins, blueberries, blackberries, plums, eggplant, grapes
I think cooking for toddlers and young children is pretty much the same as being a chef in a 5-star restaurant- presentation is very important. Kids are easily swayed by colors and shapes, so making a rainbow is a great way to get children eating a variety of foods in a fun way.
Have you ever made a rainbow with your kids' meal? What did I miss that could be used for the parts of the rainbow? I can't wait to try this again sometime! :)