A list of toddler-friendly breakfast ideas with HIDDEN VEGETABLES to get your kids off to a good start nutrition-wise every morning.
If your kid is anything like mine, they just don't eat vegetables. None. Whatsoever.
So we do what all smart parents do: we hide vegetables in foods that they love: muffins, banana breads, pancakes, smoothies, and "granola" bars. Below is a list of recipes that use several different vegetables: carrots, beets, zucchini, pumpkin, spinach, lettuce, and avocado. Some even have fruit as an added bonus: blueberries, apples, or bananas.
Rotate through the vegetables your child needs
While a lot of these recipes seem repetitive because are several recipes for muffins and breads, you can rotate between them to give your kid a variety of nutrients based on what other fruits and vegetables they are eating that week. For example, if they loaded up on sweet potato fries yesterday, they probably don't need orange veggies but could use a dose of spinach. If you were able to hide spinach in their pasta sauce the other day, then try making one of the recipes below with beets or pumpkin.
And no, I am not saying you should only feed your kid muffins or pancakes for breakfast. But an extra dose of vitamins in addition to some other breakfast foods they might like, such as fruit, milk, or eggs, would be a nice start to the day, wouldn't it?
Make these and freeze them for later
Keep in mind that muffins and quick breads freeze wonderfully, so you can always make a few different recipes on a Sunday, freeze them, and rotate through these when you need quick and easy nutritious weekday breakfasts.
If you're looking for lunch and dinner recipes with hidden vegetables, I have another post with lots of toddler-tested recipes: Hidden Vegetable Recipes for Picky Eaters.
And your might be interested in these posts as well:
- 12 highly nutritious low sugar fruits
- How much protein a toddler needs, plus tons of meat and non-meat protein ideas for picky toddlers
- Vegetable soup for picky toddlers, plus ideas for how to serve it to the pickiest of eaters
11 Healthy Toddler Breakfast Recipes with Hidden Vegetables
Carrot Zucchini Muffins
Made with TWO vegetables, whole wheat flour, oats, and Greek yogurt, these carrot zucchini muffins are a pretty healthy choice, as far as muffins go. Get the recipe: Carrot Zucchini Muffins
This is a crazy easy hidden vegetable muffin recipe made with just TWO INGREDIENTS, and water. Your toddler can even help you make these (read about why you should cook with toddlers). These muffins taste fantastic and have a great texture on the inside. They're super kid-friendly, and loaded with lots of pumpkin puree. Get the recipe: Pumpkin Muffins for Toddlers
Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread
If your kids are into chocolate, then maybe they would like this Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread. Sweetened mostly with bananas, this quick bread has zucchini in it to add both nutrients and moisture. Get the recipe: Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread
Blender Spinach Banana Muffins
Spinach is a great vegetable for hiding into other foods because it usually doesn't add much flavor. These easy blender Spinach Banana Muffins are made with oats and flax seed for extra nutrition. If your kids are already old enough to know that GREEN = VEGETABLE, try telling them that this is dinosaur food, dinosaur poo, or some other silliness that they might respond to positively. Get the recipe: Spinach Banana Muffins.
Energizing Green Smoothie
Smoothies are the OG (Original Gangsta) of hiding veggies. I mean, think back to the baby food your kid started with! Your baby devoured green beans and spinach and carrots when they were all blended up with fruit. So make this energizing smoothie filled with nutrients, call it dinosaur juice, dinosaur blood/boogers, or a Hulk smoothie, or whatever, and let your kid pretend to be a superhero while they drink it. Get the recipe: Energizing Green Smoothie
Another pro-tip when it comes to smoothies: Get your kid a solid-colored tumbler, such as this 16 oz one, or this smaller 8 oz one, so they don't see the color of the smoothie and don't get overly bothered by what's inside.
Carrot Oat Bars
These Carrot Oat Bars are sweetened with maple syrup, which is a natural sweetened, and are super easy to make. They are dense and chewy, which is perfect for my son who doesn't like squishy food textures. Get your kid playing with their food (in a good way) by stacking these up in a tall tower, or in a brick-laying pattern to make a wall.
You can also use fun cookie cutter shapes (such as these) and get your kid to help cut them, instead of cutting them up into squares.
Get the recipe: Carrot Oat Bars
Gluten Free Beet Blueberry Muffins
A great option if your kid is sensitive or allergic to gluten. Beets and blueberries are both antioxidant and nutrition powerhouses. While it might seem strange, beets are actually quite sweet for a vegetable and are a great option to add moisture and sweetness to baked goods. Use golden beets if you think your kid will get freaked out by the pink color of red beets. Or use red beets if your kid loves pink and call them princess muffins!! Get the recipe: Gluten Free Beet Blueberry Muffins
Whole Wheat Carrot Cake Pancakes
Carrot Cake Pancakes are a classic, and everyone loves them. These are made with white whole wheat flour, which is a great substitute for white flour. Get the recipe: Carrot Cake Pancakes
Whole Wheat Sweet Potato Muffins
Your kid will NEVER know there is a secret vegetable in these whole wheat sweet potato muffins. Plus these are a great way to use up that sweet potato baby food container that your child tried and spit out. Get the recipe: Whole Wheat Sweet Potato Muffins
Pumpkin French Toast
French Toast is a special treat, kids will never suspect there is a healthy vegetable hiding in here! This recipe uses actual pumpkin (not just pumpkin spice), and can be made with whole wheat bread if you think your kid will like that. Get the recipe: Pumpkin French Toast
No Bake Carrot Cake Energy Bites
A little something different here! These No Bake Carrot Cake Energy Bites are a great choice if your kid is tired of you trying to feed them typical foods, and all they want are snacks. Kids will think these are a fun treat while getting some much needed nutrition. These are sweetened naturally with dates and have oats in them for extra fiber and nutrition. Pro tip: Get your kid to help you make these, if you think seeing carrots won't turn them off from eating these. Get the recipe: Carrot Cake Energy Bites
Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
Another great recipe, if your child is a chocolate lover. These taste and look extra rich and chocolatey, but they actually have 2 cups of zucchini hidden in them, and are made with whole wheat flour! Win win win. Get the recipe: Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
I hope this list of kid-friendly breakfast recipes is helpful! If your picky eater kid eats even one of these things, I would consider that a success. Remember, every little bit counts: a bite of healthy food, a meal where they enjoy themselves and are not stressed out by having to eat vegetables, or even a meal where they get to have fun playing with their food and bonding with their parents is a win in my book.