It doesn’t get more quintessentially British than a Sunday roast! By adding veg to your meat and potatoes you create a balanced meal, but let us take you step by step to make your favourite roast even better.
Why are Roasts so great?
Roasts are popular! Whether you are a meat-eating family or doing a veggie roast, these meals are pretty easy to feed to your family. Whether you make them often or are only just starting out, you can rest assured that the success rate is high.
Roasts can be easily created as a balanced, nutritious meal. It’s not hard to visualise aiming for approximately ¼ plate meat or protein, ¼ plate carbs (including white potatoes) and ½ plate veg (although don’t worry if you are a long way off that, it can take time!). This makes a roast an easy dish to slowly improve over time simply by gently increasing and decreasing the portion size of each type of food.
So take your favourite way of making a roast, find where you are in our steps, and see if you can try out the next stage and use our tips to help make it easier!
How are your roast skills?
I’m just starting out.
I’m ready to take it to the next level.
How can I get my kids involved and interested?
Roasts are popular!
Whether you are a meat-eating family or doing a veggie roast, these meals are pretty easy to feed to your family. Whether you make them often or are only just starting out, you can rest assured that the success rate is high.
Here is a simple recipe for a roast which you can use as a base and build on over time…
Cooked meat or veggie alternative
Frozen roast potatoes or yorkshire puddings
Optional: frozen peas
Optional: condiments (mustard, ketchup, mayo, etc)
Cook the frozen roast potatoes or yorkshire puddings according to package instructions.
Cook the frozen peas according to package instructions (pan of boiling water or microwave for a few mins).
Serve the cooked meat with the potatoes and peas, and some condiments if you feel they are needed.
There is no need to go any further with this recipe until you are confident with it and feel up for the next step.
Feeling ready? Let’s see how you can get your next small victory without battles…
Kids who engage regularly with veg through veg-themed activities, such as arts and crafts, sensory experiences, growing and cooking are shown to be more likely to eat the veg they engage with. Encouraging kids to engage and play with veg is the handy first step to them developing a good relationship with veg and life-long healthy eating.
Kids in the kitchen
The eventual aim, if possible, is to get kids in the kitchen. Don’t worry, this doesn’t have to mean they are with you from start-to-end creating mess and rising stress levels! It can be as simple as giving them one small job (stirring, measuring, pouring, grating, chopping…) ideally involving veg. They can come in to do their little bit, and have fun with you for a few minutes. Getting them involved, making it playful and praising them plenty for their involvement, perhaps even serving it as dinner they “made”, makes it much more likely they will eat the food offered, not to mention teaching them important life skills. Find ideas, safety tips, videos and even a free chart in our Kids in the Kitchen section here.
While getting kids to interact with veggies for real and using their senses to explore them is best, encouraging hands off activities like arts & crafts, puzzles & games or at-home science experiments can be a great start, particularly for those who are fussier eaters or struggle with anything too sensory. Use these veg-themed activities as a stepping stone to interacting with the veg themselves. We have loads of crafty downloads here, puzzles here, and quirky science with veg here.
Once you feel your child is ready to engage a little more, you can show them how to explore the veg you have on hand with their senses, coming up with playful silly descriptions of how a veg smells, feels, looks, sounds and perhaps even tastes. Find ideas, videos and some simple sensory education session ideas to get you started here.
The moments before food is offered can be a perfect opportunity for engagement that can help make it more likely a child will eat it! Giving children a sense of ownership in the meal can make a big difference to their feelings going into it and the pride they take in it. You know your child best, but if you aren’t sure where to start, we have some fun and simple ideas for easy roles you can give them in the serving process over here.
I Want To Improve My Roast
If you are feeling confident with your favourite roast recipe, but you’re wondering if there are some small tweaks you could make for the better, this is for you.
We’ve outlined some simple stages for continually improving on a basic roast recipe to get you from good to great. Find where you feel your current recipe sits and see if the next step is something you could aim for. You don’t have to go any further, but if you choose to, make sure you are feeling confident with this new stage before you try the next one.
And remember, the MOST important thing is that the family enjoys the meal! These changes and swaps can take as long as is needed if your family isn’t ready for big changes all in one go. Small simple improvements over time may not even be noticed.
Play is essential!
Think of children helping in the kitchen as a role play game with plenty of fun for maximum effect. One of the best ways to develop a love of veg in kids is to get them involved in the prep of the veg. Not only is cooking an essential life skill for kids to learn, but it’s a great, fun way to get them engaging with healthy foods!
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