Growing up, I loved my fruits and veggies. My parents did such a great job at always provided us with a wide variety and ways of eating them. Between my Italian and American parents, there were such varied styles of preparing the same vegetable/fruit. Which I loved, because it allowed me to try new ways of eating them!
This love of fruits and veggies I wanted to pass on to my children. We started when they were babies with exposing them to as many different choices available. Some they liked and others not so much. And each of our children were different in what they preferred. In the most part, they enjoyed their fruits and veggies.
But what happens to a child’s palate as they grow older? My daughter is still very much in love with her fruits and veggies but with some changes in preference. My son, on the other hand, complete amnesia. He has become my most picky eater in the fruit and veggie department. Both will change their minds on “likes” and “dis-likes” on a whim and is impossible to keep up. But my son is the most difficult to even try a “no thank you bite” (this is where they take one bite and that’s it).
I’m always on the look out for new ways to introduce veggies and fruit that I hope will appeal to my children. I came across a recipe from Kirbie’s Cravings for Cauliflower Tots that I thought looked kid friendly (they can use their hands to eat them) and as a bonus it’s healthier! It is a make-over of the classic potato tot using cauliflower which helps it fit into my diet plan. Happy dance!
So I decided to give them a try as a side dish with baked fish for dinner one night. They have a similar texture as a regular potato tot, but with so much more flavor from the seasoning and cheese. But here’s the real test, I held my breath as both my kids took a bite. They liked them! My hubby liked them too! Double bonus. These were very simple to make and didn’t take much time. I’m adding this recipe to our regular rotation of side dishes. Finally, something new, easy, and kid approved! Give them a try and let me know what you think. Click on Cauliflower Tots for a printable pdf version of this recipe.
3 cups finely chopped cooked cauliflower (1 head)
1 cup Italian Seasoned Panko bread crumbs
1 cup shredded low fat cheddar cheese
- Chop cauliflower into florets and boil until soft. Add to food processor and pulse until large coarse crumbs form.
2. Add the chopped cauliflower, breadcrumbs, cheese, and eggs to a large mixing bowl. Mix until combined.
3. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Shape cauliflower mixture into small rounded rectangles, like a regular potato tot. Mine are not exact but all are similar in size and shape, which is important for even cooking. Press the mixture firmly together in your hands before shaping to ensure they hold their shape. Place on baking sheet lined with silpat or parchment paper.
4. Bake for 15 minutes or until bottoms are browned. Flip over and bake another 10 minutes. If your tots are larger like mine, you may need to bake a few minutes longer until they are crispy. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce and enjoy!