There are few skills more important for your children to learn than those that will empower them to feed themselves for the rest of their lives.
Think about it. Over the course of your life, what will you spend more time doing than planning for, shopping for, preparing and eating food? The only thing I can think of is sleeping, and you don’t really need any special skills to sleep!
But, where cooking is concerned, there are many things you should teach your children as early as possible. Because, by the time they’re in their late teens, they might not be all that interested in learning how to scramble eggs.
As a parent, it’s your job to teach your children about nutrition and why they need vegetables and not candy. Why they need to try everything on their plates (often more than once!) before saying they don’t like it. Why they need protein and iron and fiber.
It’s also your job to arm your children with basic skills, advancing with them as they grow older, so that by the time they leave the delicious comfort of your nest (and your dinner table), they will be able to cook for themselves.
If you do your job right, you will have instilled in them a good solid education in basic nutrition so they understand what types of food choices they need to make at the grocery store, and they will know how to make their own meals.
Many young adults leave their parents’ homes and end up fueling their bodies with fast food and sugary snacks because they don’t have the skills they need to feed themselves. (Foraging for pizza does not count.)
Over the coming months, we’re going to start talking more about teaching cooking skills, and I sincerely hope you will collect all of these lessons and work through them with your children.
Today, we’re going to talk about the basics of how to make a smoothie. No matter how tiny a dorm room your child ends up with one day, there will always be room for a blender.
Now, depending on the age of your child, you might have to do some of the work—chopping fruit and helping to get the blender set up, cleaned up and put away. But, no matter what age your child is, he or she will be able to add the ingredients, press the buttons and enjoy!
Start by teaching the basics of a fruit smoothie and what it includes:
- Frozen organic berries. As you select your berries, teach the children about the nutrients in each item so they know why it’s being added to the smoothie and how those frozen berries will make their smoothie icy cold.
- Liquid. This should either be almond milk or coconut milk. Let your child decide which liquid they want to add so they feel empowered!
- Fiber. I always add chia seeds and/or FiberMender to my smoothies. Show your kids how chia seeds thicken up like magic and explain that they help take yucky stuff out of your body when they eat them.
- All-in-One Smoothie Mix. It’s important to get that protein into the smoothie and of course, I always use my All-in-One Smoothie Mix. Get all three flavors and let the kids choose which one they want to add and why you’re adding it.
As you can see, this is all a learning opportunity!
Explain that you can change the ingredients to make the smoothie creamier, sweeter and healthier.
This is a lesson that can be repeated on a regular basis because your child will get a real kick out of being allowed to choose the ingredients used in each different smoothie you make and taste together. Let your children choose the frozen fruit when you’re at the grocery store so that they really feel connected to the meal/snack they’re making. That connection is SO important, and I hope you will have fun teaching your child how to get it!
So, happy blending!
Oh, and before I forget, we currently have a great promo happening when you buy our Smoothie Mix. You can join our 15 Day Smoothie Blitz and get yourself in ship shop shape for summer. Get the details here!
Leanne Ely, Your Dinner Diva