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Family

6 hidden-veggie meal hacks to help you fill their little bellies with goodness

They'll never know!

By Kylie Archer
Trying to balance mum responsibilities and put dinner on the table for the family every day is hard enough as it is.
The last thing you want to worry about is how your fussy eaters are going to get all the essential vitamins and minerals that their growing bodies need.
New research from Perfect Italiano found that 91 percent of Aussie parents would rather have empty plates at the end of meal times over Instagram-worthy dishes.
To help ensure you've got a table full of satisfied tummies every night, these meal hacks show you how to pack kids' meals full of veggies, without them noticing – win, win!
Kylie Archer shares her expert meal hacks over at Kidgredients. (Image: Kidgredients)
Hack #1
Take inspiration from a well-known kid-friendly favourite like nuggets and try and replace the chicken with mixed vegetables. Mashed sweet potato and apple or tuna and corn are two of my family's favourites. The mixes can be shaped into nugget-like patties, which can be reheated or eaten cold, and are time-savers when you make them in bulk.
Hack #2
Add your kid's favourite veggies in with their favourite afternoon snacks. For example, rather than having ham and cheese pastry rolls, why not try a ham, cheese AND zucchini pastry roll or pack your pork spring rolls with seasonal veggies.
Adding vegetables to a dish they already love is a simple way to get started. (Image: Kidgredients)
Hack #3
Play hide-and-seek with family favourites. Lasagne, mac and cheese, pasta bakes; all of these dishes can easily hide veggies within their layers, with the veggie taste masked by the delicious cheesiness.
Hack #4
Sneak in veggies that won't change the flavour or texture of the food. Cauliflower is a great example - mix finely blended cauliflower in with scrambled eggs or sprinkle it underneath a delicious sauce on pizza.
WATCH: Kidgredients broccoli and chicken cheesy lasagne. Continues after video ...
Hack #5
Get the kids to help you blend up a healthy, colourful smoothie full of seasonal fruit and veggies. Our family's favourite combination is kale, spinach, carrot, apple, avocado, cucumber and lemon.
Hack #6
Try a veggie-infused sweet treat. Be open to creativity (and to some knock-backs) and you'll end up finding pairings that you never knew worked well together. Some of my favourites include sweet potato in pancake batter, beetroot in chocolate cake mix or brownies, or adding avocado into your healthy chocolate mousse!
You can sneak veggies into sweet treats too! And the best part is they'll never know. (Image: Kidgredients)
Empty plates are complements to the chef – you – and this means so much more than what Insta-perfect meals can bring. After all, at the end of the day, is there any better feeling than going to bed with satisfied, well-fed kids?
Live the #NoFilter life in the kitchen and embrace #UglyPerfect meals!

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