We turned traditional salad into finger food, and the kids loved it!
My daughter came home from school a few days ago (she’s 13) and mentioned that the cafeteria was serving her favorite salad! My kids buy school lunch once a week, and she was bummed she had brought her lunch that day. Curious, I asked her what her favorite salad was. She said: Lettuce with ranch! LOL I didn’t really count that as a feeding success, but at the same time, I couldn’t be completely disappointed. It did make me feel bad that a neighbor boy (who’s only in the 3rd grade) told me that his favorite food was spinach salad! Now that’s something his mom should be proud of!
Anyway, in the quest to make our salads: Simple, fun and delicious, we’ve been experimenting with traditional salads and thinking of new ways to serve them to kids. One of the things the kids came up with is to wrap our lettuce around the salad toppings, rather than tossing it altogether in a bowl. We called them “Salad bundles” to distinguish them from a lettuce wrap (with cooked, savory ingredients). Of course we thought we were super clever in calling them bundles, until a Google search this morning showed me that Dora the Explorer beat me to the punch, with her Salad bundles for the backpack! Good for you Dora! I haven’t seen this book before, but we support any cookbooks that encourage more veggies!
We let the kids assemble their salad bundles and put what they want in them. We tried peppers, carrots and string cheese for one wrap. Strawberries and pineapple for another, and a leftover bean salad from dinner two nights ago for a third.
Lettuce wraps/ or salad bundles don’t always have to stay closed to eat them. Kids can hold them together and eat them like a taco. However, we did experiment a bit with tying kale leaves and then later parsley leaves around the lettuce. It worked OK- but it was hard to find just the perfect stem that would wrap all the way around the bundle and be pliable enough not to break. We used some string to tie the rest up, but if you have small kids who might not take the string off before the put it in their mouths, just use the parsley leaves, or eat it like a taco.
And then there was the dipping factor. These salad bundles we dipped in some dressing, and that was truly the selling point for my kids… cause remember? The best salads are lettuce dipped in ranch!
We like to be creative with serving up our veggies, because at the end of the day, we are only interested in our kids tasting a variety of fruits and vegetables. Some will like it one way, one another. As long as they are learning to appreciate the taste of real food, that’s all we can ask for.
Good luck feeding your kids this week!
To make these wraps, simple use
- 1 outer Romaine lettuce leaf.
- Cut the end off if it is super long.
- Fill the center along the rib of the leaf with your typical salad toppings. These can include: Hard boiled eggs, cucumbers,t tomatoes, beans, carrots, croutons, peppers, strawberries, pineapple, mandarin oranges, etc.
- Roll leaf up and secure with a tie or parsley leaf that is long enough to tie.
- Serve with your favorite salad dressing.
And here’s that one from Dora The Explorer’s: Salad Bundles from Let’s Cook!
So, join us all week as we bring you new salad ideas for your kids! And, we have a salad category if you haven’t checked it out yet! We’ll have even more ideas to share over on our Facebook page and pinterest! So, make sure your following us there!