As most of you could probably guess, I have a family that includes children. But Well Vegan does not offer a family meal plan! It’s absolutely true. I have contemplated it for years, but have never been able to wrap my head around all the logistics. It’s hard enough putting together meal plans for two reasonable adults. Add any unreasonable (they’re almost always unreasonable) little people to the mix and you have chaos. If you want to subscribe, and I hope you do, this is what I recommend: Start with the basic meal plan (without the flex day), Pick up some extra kid snacks and lunch stuff — carrots, raisins, fruit, nut butter, whatever. It typically works for our house and we have two kids (ages two and five).
Feeding any kids, vegan or not, can be a challenge. My kids are pretty good eaters and typically I don’t prepare kid specific food for them. What I cook for adult dinner is what they get — take it or leave it. And there are certainly nights they opt to leave it and beg for peanut butter toast before bed. Fine. My rule is, taste it and if you don’t like it you can have toast. Just toast. I don’t make plan B dinners. Who has time for that? Kids get fun food for lunch, and on leftover nights I always give them first dibs. I also let my five year old pick what we have for dinner one night a week. She’s so predicable. It’s almost always spaghetti and meatballs. Oh there’s also an exception for nights I make spicy food — that just isn’t fair. Their little mouths can’t always take the heat. Whenever we’re having a particularly picky week that’s been slim on actual nutrients, I head straight for the smoothies. No better way to get some good stuff into them.
If you’re looking for a resource for feeding babies and young toddlers, I highly recommend Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron. It has a lot of great information about nutrition and offers vegetarian options that are easily made vegan. Both of my kids came up on her Super Porridge.
Here are a few of our kid favorites:
- PB & J
- BLTA Sandwich
- Carrot Salad
- Green Bean and Fingerling Potato Salad with Miso Dressing
- Red Quinoa Salad with Corn, Avocado and Black Beans
- Mini Pizzas
- Asian Baked Tofu with brown rice
- Black Bean Burgers
- Broccoli Pesto Pasta with Bowtie Pasta
- Burrito Bowls
- Homemade Meatballs
- Tomato Bisque
- Loaded Baked Potatoes
- Snobby Joes