We’re going to sneak those veggies in this week. Stay tuned because I am sharing the number 1 tip that has helped me get more veggies in my family’s diet. I’d say it’s worth a shot with Cheesy Cauliflower Pasta Alfredo because cheesy pasta is an easy comfort food dish most kids LOVE.
Tonight I was telling my husband that sometimes you just have to start by sneaking veggies in for picky eaters. My daughter (a picky eater) was walking into the room and stopped in her tracks, got a funny look on her face, and said, “Moooom, I’m right here, you know.”
Well sweetie, I wasn’t talking about you. We set a hard fast line about mealtime in our home that I know many people do not or are starting a bit later when their kids are already used to a certain set of rules or lack thereof. If you’re one of those parents who is frustrated that your kids aren’t eating as many veggies as you would like then this tip is for you.
Introduce new veggies on the sly. Don’t lie. I refuse to lie to my kids about what they are eating. If they discover I lied the trust is gone and it will be much harder to get their cooperation down the road. However, I’m not beyond pureeing veggies so you can’t tell they are there. In fact, that was my battle plan in getting my husband to WILLINGLY eat more veggies. He willingly ate food he loved with no idea I pureed those nasty mushrooms and peppers in the pasta sauce. Little by little I increased amounts and didn’t puree them, but chopped them finely to the point he now eats a much wider array of veggies. I almost fell over the day he chose to put peppers in this Chicken Marsala dish he made.
Cheese is also a great answer, which is why I paired cauliflower in this pasta alfredo recipe. Most kids love cheesy pasta. You can get a box of helper or “roni” with a cheese sauce packet but you don’t need them once you can make this easy roux. YES! EASY!
I rice the cauliflower by running it through the food processor. 1 head of cauliflower will make approximately 4-5 cups of cauliflower rice. If you worry your kids will notice too much cauliflower taste I suggest starting out with 1 cup of cauliflower rice this time. Over the next couple times of making it you can gradually increase the cauliflower rice to the full recipe amount.
Also note this recipe makes a double batch so you have a meal now and one to put in the freezer. It works just as well to half the recipe.
- 2 – 16 ounce boxes pasta (regular or gluten-free)
- 4 cups cauliflower rice*
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 tablespoons cornstarch or flour
- 4 cups milk
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 8 ounces cheese
NOTE: If introducing cauliflower to a very picky family, I suggest starting with 1 cup as noted in my post.
- Boil water for pasta.
While water is coming to a boil:
- Rice cauliflower and measure out 4 cups (You may cook this through to soften before adding to cheesy alfredo sauce if you wish.)
- Melt butter in large frying pan or 4-6 quart pan over medium high heat.
- Whisk in cornstarch/flour, salt, and pepper.
- When thick and bubbly, add 1/2 cup milk, stirring constantly until well incorporated.
- After 2 cups have been added, stirring after each 1/2 cup addition, and mixture is thick, add cauliflower rice.
- Add remaining milk 1/2 cup at a time stirring over medium high heat until thick.
- Add 8 ounces grated cheddar, stirring in until melted.
- Toss with cooked and drained pasta.
Make sure you check out more family favorite cauliflower recipes and learn all about cauliflower.