We all know vegetables are important. With Haiden, I made sure we only fed him veggies, not fruit until he was close to a year old to “develop a taste” for the savory. It took a while to move him to solid table food, but we have, and it's still a tug-of-war almost every day to get him to eat his vegetables with the rest of his food! Forget vegetables first, then fruit! It just didn't matter for him. Sure, he'll eat corn and carrots, but try to get him to try broccoli, tomatoes or cucumbers and you'll find his mouth firmly closed.
Fortunately, I've learned that sauce (“dip” in our house) goes a long way in convincing my toddler to eat foods he previously didn't like. At this point, it's a bonus that tomato sauce and yogurt actually have nutritional value; it's all about getting the vegetables into his mouth! This is where I realized that sometimes when we're dining out, Haiden actually eats much better than he eats at home! He's far too little and selective to get a meal of his own, so my husband and I make sure at least one of us orders something that we can share with him. I generally order a salad or a lighter sandwich, and my husband will get something heavier, like pasta. We recently ate at Noodles & Company (there's a new one in our neighborhood) and found that it was a great place to take Haiden to have a healthy meal. According to Noodles & Company:
Noodles & Company recognizes the importance of access to nutritious food served quickly and strives to provide customers with affordable meals prepared from fresh and healthy ingredients. In fact, Noodles & Company has 14 fresh vegetables on their menu, and what kid doesn't like pasta? A great alternative to fried and fatty fast food, Noodles & Company offers dishes loaded with fresh and in-season vegetables that the whole family can enjoy. You can dine in or take your meal to go; either way, your sautéed-to-order meal is usually ready in about 5 minutes.
It's now the season for asparagus, and Noodles & Company just introduced the new Asparagus and Lemon Linguine pasta dish. It's made with asparagus, lemon juice, basil, snap peas, mushrooms, onions and feta cheese. Yum! You even have your choice of regular or whole wheat linguine! The Company firmly believes this is a great dish to introduce a new veggie to your child's diet.
If you don't know much about asparagus, Noodles & Company has also created an informational webpage all about selecting, preparing and eating asparagus!
We love asparagus in our house, but it's not in season for very long, and I only like to buy it when it's fresh and on sale! Those sale prices should be popping up soon, and I'll be using the asparagus page to try out new recipes!
Disclosure: I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Noodles & Company and received five Noodles and Company bowl cards to facilitate my review. Mom Central also sent me a thank-you gift certificate.