Ahh, April Fools. Who doesn’t love a few harmless pranks on this coveted day? The old chocolate cookie with toothpaste disguised as frosting, or candy coated onions disguised as apples. It’s harmless fun, but what about some trickery to actually get kids to eat more veggies? Without candy-coating of course!
Introducing two nutrient-packed pepper, eggplant and tomato recipes that will become dinner staples in your home thanks to some undercover work by these incognito veggies. This is an easy and flavorful way to get even the pickiest of eaters to up their veggie intake. They won’t suspect a thing!
Fresh and Healthy Vegetable Pasta
We love showcasing the beautiful roasted veggies, as seen here, but if you need to disguise the veggies, simply puree them before mixing with the pasta.
* If pureeing - 1 cup reserved water from pasta and 2 tbsp tomato paste
Preheat oven to 450° F. Place tomatoes, eggplant, bell peppers, zucchini and onion on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper and oregano. Bake for 30 minutes, or until tomatoes are blistering. Set aside. (Note: If you plan on pureeing the vegetables, transfer them to a large stock pot. Add 1 cup of reserved water from pasta and 2 tablespoons of tomato paste. Use an immersion blender to combine until smooth.)
Prepare pasta according to the directions.
In a large pot, cook Italian sausage over medium heat until brown. Once cooked, add vegetables and pasta, combine. Serve with parmesan cheese and basil.
Grilled Cheese with Peppers and Tomato-Basil Spread
Orange and yellow peppers are disguised perfectly by the cheese, and add a sweet flavor kids will love!
To make tomato-basil spread, roast tomatoes on a baking sheet at 450 F for 20 minutes. Once done, put tomatoes and basil in a food processor and combine.
Heat olive oil in a large pan over med-high heat. Add one slice of bread, topped with tomato-basil spread. Add three slices of cheese and half of the bell peppers, cover with another slice of bread. Heat until bread is crispy and cheese is melted. Repeat for other sandwich.