Childrens Vegetarian Birthday Party! - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 01-12-2009, 11:53 AM
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I am planning my daughter's fifth birthday party.. Her first birthday as a vegetarian I would like to do all the food vegetarian and vegan but need help with some healthy ideas. I know I could do something like pizza but I would much rather come up with some better, healthier ideas that the kids will still like. I'm pretty sure none of the other kids are vegetarians but I think it would be great to show them how tasty it can be without making it seem like a big deal. It will be in the afternoon.

Any Ideas are appreciated!

Thanks
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#2 Old 01-12-2009, 12:43 PM
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My daughter's 4th birthday party is in a few weeks and I am also trying to come up with a healthy menu that the kids will all like. Here are some ideas I have:



crackers and pretzels with hummus, bean dip and salsa

fruit salad

a veggie tray

black beans

rice

cheese and veggie quesadillas
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#3 Old 01-12-2009, 01:56 PM
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I definitely think that fruit and veggies with some yummy dips is a great idea. Although I have no children so not the best person to ask
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#4 Old 01-12-2009, 04:04 PM
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for my kids party there is usually more garbage, yet vegan food there as its their b-day--they eat healthy stuff most other times. i dont care what they eat of it or if it is a very nutritious combo of food--one day wont matter. non-hfcs pop. pretzels, several dips, fried mushrooms, tater tots or fries, pasta with whatever sauce/seasonings they want etc.
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#5 Old 01-12-2009, 08:06 PM
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Veggie pizza can be healthy! What if they make their own pizzas with english muffin halves? We do that around here quite often and my four year old loves it. She spoons on her own sauce, adds her own toppings, and then we bake until the cheese is melted.
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#6 Old 01-12-2009, 08:26 PM
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Veggie pizza can be healthy! What if they make their own pizzas with english muffin halves? We do that around here quite often and my four year old loves it. She spoons on her own sauce, adds her own toppings, and then we bake until the cheese is melted.



Great idea!



You could always do veggie "hot dogs". The taste is not convincing, but once you put condiments on it's all the same. Very kid friendly.
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#7 Old 01-13-2009, 09:53 AM
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Sloppy joe's are always awesome, and I doubt the kids will be able to tell they are fake meat. My mom has an awesome recipe for them, if you are interested I will get it from her and post it.
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#8 Old 01-13-2009, 10:20 AM
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I think pizzas are the most kid-friendly veg party food. You can make (or buy) whole wheat crusts, veggie pepperonis, organic tomato sauce, and low fat (or non dairy) cheese and the kids should wolf it down! Alternately, you could not serve real food. I was much older than 5 before birthday parties involved more than snack foods and then cake and ice cream. In a 2 hour party, you don't need a sit down meal, especially if you schedule it for like 2 pm.

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#9 Old 01-13-2009, 11:39 AM
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Great idea!



You could always do veggie "hot dogs". The taste is not convincing, but once you put condiments on it's all the same. Very kid friendly.



I'm sorry but I have to disagree with this. I have YET to find a veggie dog that's taste can be masked by condiments. They all taste like motor oil or injection cleaner or some other kind of fluid that one would put in a car. UGH!! Gross!!
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#10 Old 01-13-2009, 11:41 AM
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Sloppy joe's are always awesome, and I doubt the kids will be able to tell they are fake meat. My mom has an awesome recipe for them, if you are interested I will get it from her and post it.



This is a great idea!! You could even make Sloppy Lentils
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#11 Old 01-13-2009, 12:19 PM
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Something that is popular with all ages is fruit salsa and cinnamon chips. Here is a recipe I have used in the past:



http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Annies-...ps/Detail.aspx
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#12 Old 01-13-2009, 12:22 PM
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If you plan on having soy "meat" please let the parent's know that it is soy. I doubt they will 'not be able to tell' but they should know BEFORE eating because soy is a big allergen.
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#13 Old 01-13-2009, 12:31 PM
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Veggie pizza can be really fun and different, and tasty this way: make up your favorite crust, bake it all by itself. When it cools, top with ranch dressing of your choice, and raw veggies like shredded carrots, small broccoli florets, small cauliflower florets, black olives... whatever you would put in a veggie tray for dipping! It's really yummy, was a favorite request of my mom's friend when she was coming to a party of some kind. Serve in squares, not triangles, and it goes further.



Finger sandwiches are a good call... pb&j for kids, hummus for adults with pitas, maybe?
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#14 Old 01-13-2009, 01:30 PM
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Thanks for all the great ideas. I think we could do some kind of veggie pizza.. She always wants to pull the veggies off the pizza but lately she's been getting better. She does Love veggies when we cook them though.. I also think the other snacks and dips sound like great ideas. I will probably stay away from soy b/c she's still aquiring a taste for it herself but the sloppy joe's do sound good.

I'm still looking for a place to order some vegan desserts/treats.
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#15 Old 01-13-2009, 02:47 PM
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Thanks for all the great ideas. I think we could do some kind of veggie pizza.. She always wants to pull the veggies off the pizza but lately she's been getting better. She does Love veggies when we cook them though.. I also think the other snacks and dips sound like great ideas. I will probably stay away from soy b/c she's still aquiring a taste for it herself but the sloppy joe's do sound good.

I'm still looking for a place to order some vegan desserts/treats.



Not trying to undermine your great intentions of feeding your child a healthy diet rich in veggies... but it's her birthday! I think one day with just cheese pizza (tomato counts as a serving of veggie!) won't cause any great setbacks towards the greater good. I somehow can't see too many omni kids not getting weird about veggies on their pizza as well. If you really want to include them, puree them (cooked) into the sauce.

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#16 Old 01-13-2009, 04:31 PM
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How about things like a fruit platter strawberrys, satsumas, pineapple ect with some peanut butter, chocolate dip or slighty sweetened yougart to dip the fruit in Also savory one with olives, carrot and cucumber sticks, pickled onions (my kids love them) and cherry tomatoes with hummus and salsa dips.

Fresh popcorn with a light dusting of vinillia or cinamon sugar.

Home made bagle pizza's. Home made focaccia with olives and rosemary and garlic bread. Home made carrot cake and blue berry muffins. Mini bread sticks. A bowl of rasions and sultans. Home made sausage rolls. Home made ice cream or triffle.



My two also love love home made veggie sushi rolls, filled with carrot, red and yellow peppers and cucumber and pickled plum and soy to dip them in.



Cucumder sandwiches cut into shapes flowers, stars and moons. I just use some small metal pastry cuttters and they look so pretty. For my son when he was little I did cars, tractors and planes.



I also put out a big bowl of crisps and pretzels. As no matter how much time and how wonderfull your food is you allways get the one child who will not eat any thing you offer them except crisps.



I love cooking for kids parties ( I know I'm a real sad sap).
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#17 Old 01-13-2009, 06:49 PM
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At my daughter's first birthday party, we had the following for food (mind you, most of the guests were adults):



-Finger sandwiches that contained either egg salad with green leaf lettuce, or tomato/fresh mozerella/basil and pesto.

-black bean, corn and mango salad (had other stuff in it too obviously.)

-hummus and veggies

-fruit salad

-mac and cheese for the picky kids ;-)



And of course, birthday cake.



For a birthday party with kids over 3, I totally intend to do at least one "make your own pizza" party, probably MANY! Kids LOVE it. YOu can get organic sauce, organic cheese - lots of veggies for those who choose. Also I plan to do "decorate your own cookie/cupcake" for desserts. Its a birthday party, and honestly, pizza is NOT that bad for you, so long as the crust isn't full of trans fat, you can make the dough yourself if you want.



DO NOT SERVE FAKE MEAT UNDER THE GUISE OF REAL MEAT. You wouldn't like to be tricked and no one else likes it either.



Have fun!! That's what parties are for!!
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#18 Old 01-13-2009, 10:26 PM
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This is a great idea!! You could even make Sloppy Lentils

My kids have been vegetarians all their lives and still do not care for "sloppy lentils". It's a texture thing.
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#19 Old 01-13-2009, 10:51 PM
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If you plan on having soy "meat" please let the parent's know that it is soy. I doubt they will 'not be able to tell' but they should know BEFORE eating because soy is a big allergen.



I disagree. Soy is in a bunch of things. It's a filler for meats. It's not an unusual food in this culture by any stretch, among omnivores. If someone is allergic to soy, they need to tell the person serving the food, in the same way if someone is allergic to...corn, dairy, whatever...they need to tell the server, not the other way around. Why wouldn't she be asked to be equally as vigilant about dairy? - lots of people have issues with that.

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#20 Old 01-13-2009, 10:57 PM
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DO NOT SERVE FAKE MEAT UNDER THE GUISE OF REAL MEAT. You wouldn't like to be tricked and no one else likes it either.



It's not "fooling" them unless you're announcing, "This is made out of an animal!" Kids aren't going to be asking about that. They eat what's in front of them if they like it.



Is McDonald's "fooling" people by serving shakes with ingredients that don't resemble anything like what people would make them with at home? It's a shake. And a veggie burger is still a "burger."



I'm not understand the hypervigilance about making foods with the ingredients one normally uses, and being scared that it's somehow dishonest to others to do so, unless one makes some big announcement about it.

"If you want to know where you would have stood on slavery before the civil war, don't look at where you stand on slavery today, look at where you stand on animal rights." - Paul Watson.

 

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#21 Old 01-13-2009, 11:20 PM
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It's not "fooling" them unless you're announcing, "This is made out of an animal!" Kids aren't going to be asking about that. They eat what's in front of them if they like it.



Is McDonald's "fooling" people by serving shakes with ingredients that don't resemble anything like what people would make them with at home? It's a shake. And a veggie burger is still a "burger."



I'm not understand the hypervigilance about making foods with the ingredients one normally uses, and being scared that it's somehow dishonest to others to do so, unless one makes some big announcement about it.

But think about what it would feel like if you thought you were biting into a piece of corpse but it turned out afterwards that you hadn't. You would feel like your need to bite into something once sentient was cruelly disrespected. At the very least, you would want to sue for emotional distress.

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#22 Old 01-14-2009, 08:46 AM
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I disagree. Soy is in a bunch of things. It's a filler for meats. It's not an unusual food in this culture by any stretch, among omnivores. If someone is allergic to soy, they need to tell the person serving the food, in the same way if someone is allergic to...corn, dairy, whatever...they need to tell the server, not the other way around. Why wouldn't she be asked to be equally as vigilant about dairy? - lots of people have issues with that.



Some people do have concerns about the amount of soy ingested by children, and try to limit it. As the food being served could be mistaken for something that the parents are comfortable with their child eating, it is reasonable to inform the parents. Everyone knows what dairy products are, which makes it a poor comparison.



-----

To the others, I must say that while many of the suggestions sound tasty to us, they would not be what one would typically think would draw rave reviews from small children at a birthday party. My suggestion would be to stay as simple as possible, and to not obsess about whether or not party snacks are healthy enough.
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#23 Old 01-14-2009, 09:45 AM
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Some people do have concerns about the amount of soy ingested by children, and try to limit it. As the food being served could be mistaken for something that the parents are comfortable with their child eating, it is reasonable to inform the parents. Everyone knows what dairy products are, which makes it a poor comparison.



-----

To the others, I must say that while many of the suggestions sound tasty to us, they would not be what one would typically think would draw rave reviews from small children at a birthday party. My suggestion would be to stay as simple as possible, and to not obsess about whether or not party snacks are healthy enough.





I have to say a lot of parents do want there children to eat healthy, even at partys. One of the biggest mightmares for a parent is to turn up at a party and find out the food is overproccessed carboard full of E numbers, that makes all the kids crazy and hiper. I seem to come accross a lot more kids who are senstive to E numbers and there parents realy worry about taking their kids to parties because of the food



As for soy I always tell everyone that the food will be veggie and ask the

parents if anyone has alleriges, soy, nuts, E numbers, dairy ect. Mock meats have never been a problem either as most of my kids friends and parents are quite happy to try them.
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#24 Old 01-14-2009, 09:56 AM
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Sounds like a good idea.
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#25 Old 01-14-2009, 10:03 AM
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I have to say a lot of parents do want there children to eat healthy, even at partys. One of the biggest mightmares for a parent is to turn up at a party and find out the food is overproccessed carboard full of E numbers, that makes all the kids crazy and hiper. I seem to come accross a lot more kids who are senstive to E numbers and there parents realy worry about taking their kids to parties because of the food



As for soy I always tell everyone that the food will be veggie and ask the

parents if anyone has alleriges, soy, nuts, E numbers, dairy ect. Mock meats have never been a problem either as most of my kids friends and parents are quite happy to try them.



If you think the "home made veggie sushi rolls, filled with carrot, red and yellow peppers and cucumber and pickled plum and soy to dip them in.



Cucumder sandwiches cut into shapes flowers, stars and moons. I just use some small metal pastry cuttters and they look so pretty" constitutes party food that is appreciated by most parents or kids, then we just have no common ground for a discussion.



As someone else noted, cheese pizza with sauce would go over well, but expecting to cover it with cauliflower and broccoli and call it a treat is expecting a bit much.



You can keep the food simple and reasonably healthy without becoming the nutty vegetarian family that comes across as obsessive. It is a party after all. The food is to be a pleasure for the guests, not a message from the host.
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#26 Old 01-14-2009, 05:48 PM
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Once Again, Thank you guys for all your suggestions...



I just want to clear something up...



Please don't think I'm a health freak. By no means am I... I believe in "the everything in moderation" idea (except animal products of course I'm a very laid back parent. I don't "obsess" over any part of her life.



I know that so many people think of vegetarianism as unhealthy and strange. I would love to show people that its so much more than just Cheese Pizza. I would really like to impress parents and kids with some things that are really tasty but different than what they usually eat.



Now I have some great ideas and I will definetly put them to use. Thanks again everyone
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#27 Old 01-14-2009, 06:19 PM
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It's not "fooling" them unless you're announcing, "This is made out of an animal!" Kids aren't going to be asking about that. They eat what's in front of them if they like it.



Is McDonald's "fooling" people by serving shakes with ingredients that don't resemble anything like what people would make them with at home? It's a shake. And a veggie burger is still a "burger."



I'm not understand the hypervigilance about making foods with the ingredients one normally uses, and being scared that it's somehow dishonest to others to do so, unless one makes some big announcement about it.





Give me a break. You can't serve fake meat to people without telling them, its just rude. Just like it would be rude for someone to serve you a "veggie" soup without telling you it has a little chicken broth, or chicken boullion, its just a little bit, you wouldn't even notice, no harm done.



Dishonesty is dishonesty. Personally I don't even eat all those fake meats especially if they have all sorts of artificial flavors and colors in them. Not to mention most kids will know the difference and won't appreciate the attempt at being duped. As a kid I could tell when someone gave me a different brand of ketchup let alone the difference between meat and soy. Treat people the way you want to be treated.



To the OP - so glad you've gotten some ideas, I agree, its so desireable to branch past the "cheese pizza" thing, its just so hard with other people's kids - most of whom are chicken nugget addicts who wont touch a veggie, Elena will eat anything but her friends wont, so cheese pizza it is at our parties! (and a few other things like I mentioned.) We made a statement at our wedding with really glorious vegetarian food, at kids parties though, I find it best not to be too exotic.
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#28 Old 01-14-2009, 07:23 PM
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Just like it would be rude for someone to serve you a "veggie" soup without telling you it has a little chicken broth, or chicken boullion, its just a little bit, you wouldn't even notice, no harm done.

So you're saying that omnis have as big a reason to not want to eat fake meat as veg*ns have to not want to eat chicken broth?

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#29 Old 01-14-2009, 07:29 PM
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So you're saying that omnis have as big a reason to not want to eat fake meat as veg*ns have to not want to eat chicken broth?



I'm saying most OMNIs don't see any difference and I, for one, like to live by example. Why lie about something just because its convenient - or rather, lie via omission because it won't "hurt" anything in ones eyes.



I thought we agreed on this issue anyway? lol ;-)
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#30 Old 01-14-2009, 07:34 PM
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I'm saying most OMNIs don't see any difference

Yes, because they refuse to even try to understand the values underlying the dietary choices of ethical veg*ns.



Quote:
Why lie about something just because its convenient - or rather, lie via omission because it won't "hurt" anything in ones eyes.

I don't think it's a lie to offer some veggieburger without explicitly specifying "no flesh in here".

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