15 Easy Ways to Make Greens for Kids (They’ll Want to Eat!)


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Greens can be a tough sell for a lot of little ones, but there are some tricks to increasing the odds that the green foods you make them will actually be eaten. I’m excited to share my 15 favorite ways to make greens for kids!

greens-for-kids-grid

Greens for Kids

Getting our kids to eat their greens is like the holy grail of modern motherhood. And while I 100% do not think that our kids need to be eating a steady stream of kale to be healthy, it can be fun to find ways to offer them greens that they like.

I try not to make a big deal out of any one nutrient, and I recommend that you do the same, and instead simply make these delicious recipes with greens as part of your regular meals.

Serve them without any fanfare, except knowing that they’re all delish, and let the kids explore and taste on their own. Here are some recipes to try.

pesto-pizza-on-pink-plate

1. Spinach Pesto Pizza

When blended with cheese, sunflower seeds, and lemon juice, spinach turns into a perfect topping for pizzas or pasta—and is also packed with nutrients that you want your kiddo to eat with glee. This is a staple in our house—we make extra each summer and freeze it to use throughout the rest of the year.

Easy Spinach Pesto

Try this healthy pesto with your favorite pasta or in place of pizza sauce on pizza!

Get the recipe.

spinach pesto in jar

spinach banana muffins on pink plate

2. Spinach Banana Muffins

Sweet Green Spinach Muffin with Banana are a super healthy and yummy toddler or big kid breakfast or snack. Each bite is packed with nutrients from greens and fruit and the interior is so moist that even babies can enjoy these easy blender muffins!

Sweet Spinach Muffins with Banana

These store well, so you can make them ahead of time and pull them out of the fridge to serve. (Post updated October 2019)

Get the recipe.

spinach banana muffins on pink plate
spinach banana pancake stack with fruit rainbow

3. Spinach Banana Pancakes

These sweet Banana Spinach Pancakes are a Sunday favorite when you’re looking to boost nutrition in a favorite breakfast option. Or to have a little fun at the breakfast table by serving up a colorful meal!

Best Banana Spinach Pancakes

This is a thin batter that makes tender pancakes. Be sure to let them cook until the surface is almost entirely firm before you flip them over.

Get the recipe.

spinach-banana-pancakes-on-white-plate

green-smoothie-in-glass

4. Simple Green Smoothie

Start the day with a Simple Green Smoothie that’s designed to taste good and be easy to make—so it’s not too thick, includes accessible ingredients, and is sweet enough to help kids enjoy every sip.

Simple Green Smoothie

Frozen bananas give the smoothie a creamy, naturally sweet base, though you can make this with a fresh banana as long as the other fruit is frozen. It’s easy to add whatever berries or fruit you have on hand, so customize it for your kiddo. 

Get the recipe.

green-smoothie-in-glass

cheesy greens on divided plate with pink fork

5. Cheesy Greens

Quick, easy, and super cheesy, this is a simple way to serve greens to toddlers. You may be surprised but this is often a big hit with one year olds!

Quick and Cheesy Baby Spinach

Use baby spinach, regular spinach, baby kale, or lacinato (sometimes called dinosaur) kale for best results and easy chewing.

Get the recipe.

cheesy greens on divided plate with pink fork

spinach pesto pasta recipe

6. Spinach Pesto Pasta

This whole dinner comes together in about 20 minutes and has veggies and protein already in the mix so you don’t even need to serve anything with it!

Easy Spinach Pesto

Try this healthy pesto with your favorite pasta or in place of pizza sauce on pizza!

Get the recipe.

spinach pesto in jar

pesto pizza rolls

7. Kale Pesto Pizza Rolls

These Homemade Pizza Rolls with Pesto are one of my favorite family recipes to keep on hand in the fridge or freezer for quick dinners, especially on nights when the kids have activities. They have a veggie right in the mix and the cheese and pizza flavor make the whole package a bit hit with the kids!

Homemade Pizza Rolls with Pesto

You can use store-bought pesto if desired in place of the homemade version below.

Get the recipe.

pesto pizza rolls

8. Kale Pesto

This packs a nutrition punch and is delicious on pasta and pizza.

Easy Kale Pesto (to Share with the Kids!)

Try this healthy pesto with your favorite pasta or in place of pizza sauce on pizza! It’s a kid-friendly way to serve up kale and you don’t have to worry about it turning brown if you store it.

Get the recipe.

kale-pesto-in-container

blueberry greek frozen yogurt pops

9. Blueberry Frozen Yogurt Pops (with Spinach)

Pack your next batch of freezer pops with fruits and veggies with these super simple—and so sweet!—Blueberry Greek Frozen Yogurt Popsicle Recipe with spinach!

Blueberry Popsicles (with Yogurt and Spinach)

If you have a high powered blender you can add up to a cup of spinach. If you’re relying on a food processor you may want to reduce it to ½ cup. Start with the lower amount and add more as you like.

Get the recipe.

blueberry greek frozen yogurt pops

How to Bake Kale Bites

10. Cheesy Kale Bites

If it’s a challenge for you to serve greens that your child will actually eat, you’re going to love today’s recipe for Cheesy Baked Kale Bites. They’re packed with nutrition and are delicious when reheated so they are great to make ahead.

Cheesy Baked Kale Bites

You can use curly kale or flat kale in this recipe—both work well.

Get the recipe.

How to Bake Kale Bites

mini-spinach-egg-muffins-on-wire-rack

11. Mexican Egg Muffins with Spinach

These Mexican Egg Muffins with Spinach are one of the ways that we like to turn eggs into a quick and easy meal that is easy for even the littlest eaters to eat.

Spinach Egg Muffins

Egg muffins will stick to a muffin tin unless you grease it well with nonstick spray. So try not to skimp on that step!

Get the recipe.

spinach-egg-muffins-on-blue-divided-plate

healthy-chocolate-smoothie-with-straw

12. Simple Chocolate Smoothie

It can be hard for some kids to learn to enjoy smoothies, so meeting them where they are with a simple Chocolate Smoothie can help introduce the food group in a way that’s not too alarming. And this version even has hidden veggies inside!

Best Chocolate Smoothie (with Veggies!)

Be sure to blend this super smooth for the best texture. Use any or none of the optional ingredients. See the Notes for how to make this with regular milk.

Get the recipe.

healthy-chocolate-smoothie-with-straw
green-smoothie-pop-on-plate

13. Green Smoothie Freezer Pops

If you have a toddler who’s not a fan of smoothies, or you just want a new way to serve up a green smoothie, try these freezer pops!

Green Smoothie Freezer Pops

If you want to make more pops, simply double the recipe! If you have a toddler who’s super sensitive to textures, use mango instead of kiwi for extra creamy results.

Get the recipe.

green-smoothie-pop-on-plate
spinach-grilled-cheese-on-plate

14. Spinach Grilled Cheese

We’ve made this in the summer when we have extra kale from the garden and a concentrated scoop is great for adding to smoothies, eggs, or even pasta.

Easy Spinach Grilled Cheese

You can also do this with full size spinach if that’s what you’re able to find. Just discard any stems before starting the recipe.

Get the recipe.

spinach-grilled-cheese-on-plate

easy spinach quesadillas

15. Spinach Quesadillas

These are one of my favorite ways to power up a classic kid food. The simple spinach-cheese spread comes together in a food processor and is super delish—and it makes the spinach easy to chew for the little ones. (My husband loves these too, which is always high praise!)

Easy Spinach Quesadillas

You can also do this with full size spinach if that’s what you’re able to find. Just discard any stems before starting the recipe.

Get the recipe.

spinach quesadillas

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I’d love to hear your feedback below in the comments, so please chime in!

This post was first published April 2019.



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