Thanksgiving is the ultimate family holiday. We all picture our Thanksgiving table surrounded by family and friends. But what about before the actual meal? You may want to add some kid friendly items to your menu that the kids themselves can help prepare. As an added bonus you may find that finicky kid eaters may be much more willing to eat what they have helped prepare. If you would like to involve your kids (or any of your younger guests in the meal preparation) here are some recipes to try that are both easy and fun. And best of all the recipes are proven kid-pleasers!
Beverage-Here’s a punch recipe that kids love to make and drink. Kids especially love the fact that they can color the drink with food coloring. It’s so good you may find this is what all your guests will want to drink.
1 can of orange juice (mix as directed)
1 can of pineapple juice (mix as directed)
A few drops of red food coloring
Mix equal parts of orange juice, pineapple juice, and ginger ale.
Add desired amount of food coloring for a pink color to punch or leave with natural colors.
You can float the orange and lime slices and cherries in your punch or garnish glass with them.
Appetizer-While this may not seem like a traditional Thanksgiving appetizer just remember most kids love chips and dip and being able to make this will make it even more special for your younger guests. Be sure and surround the dip with lots of chips and crackers for dipping.
Tortilla Chip Dip
1 8oz. package cream cheese
1 15oz. can of chili (with or without beans)
Shredded cheddar cheese
Lots of chips for dipping
Spread the cream cheese out evenly in the bottom of a glass pie plate.
Spread the chili on top of that.
Then, sprinkle lots of cheddar cheese.
Microwave until cheese is melted and ingredients are nice and hot.
Entree-Most kids are willing to eat roast turkey but for those few ultra picky eaters consider using this as a substitute entree. Be sure to supervise that proper sanitation is put into effect since you’re dealing with poultry.
2 cups potato chip crumbs (sour cream and onion work really well)
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
Pepper to taste
3-pounds of chicken tenders cleaned and cut up
1/2 cup melted margarine
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Combine potato chip crumbs, garlic salt and pepper in shallow dish.
Dip chicken pieces 1 at a time into melted margarine;
Roll each chicken piece in potato chip crumbs until coated.
Arrange chicken pieces skin side up in 9×13-inch baking pan.
Bake for 18-20 minutes or until chicken is brown and crispy.
Salad-Here is a salad that only requires minimal chopping and mixing and is perfect for little hands to put together. Kids love the sweetness of the salad so much they won’t know there is some nutrition in it as well!
2 tablespoons sliced blanched almonds (optional)
1 cup yogurt
4 tablespoons brown sugar
3 bananas sliced
2 tablespoons seedless raisins
1 cup sour cream
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
Mix all ingredients together and serve. It makes a very pretty presentation in lettuce cups.
As a final note of caution just remember that no matter how experienced your young cooks seem, children in the kitchen need constant supervision. If you are unavailable to constantly supervise the cooking, assign a willing adult helper who can make sure that the chopping and any cooking is done safely. That way all your guests will be sure to have lots to be thankful for when they sit down to that wonderful Thanksgiving meal they all helped create.