I don't know about you, but I find it a struggle to get my boys to eat meat. Fortunately, I've found the following five easy to add products to their meals to pick up the slack without much stress on my part.
Even if your child isn't eating meat, they are likely still getting their daily fix already through alternative options like these below. Many foods contain Protein, but the best sources are beef, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, milk, nuts, seeds, and legumes like black beans and lentils.
Why does protein matter? Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.
Kids require approximately 1-1.5 grams of protein for every TWO pounds of body weight. Thus, a 40-lb child needs approximately 18 grams protein per day!
5 Easy Ways to add Protein to your Child’s Diet
Mini Babybel Cheese
Perfect for on-the-go, adding to a lunch box or as a mid-day snack. Mild, creamy and delicious, Original Mini Babybel snacks are 100% real cheese. It's also a good source of calcium and protein (5g). If you have a picky cheese eater, try pairing it with crackers or pretzels. Bonus, my boys think it's really fun to peel the outer wax layer, so go ahead and let them unwrap it. I'll often give them a Mini Babybel when they get home from school or while they are watching TV and waiting for dinner to be ready. Plus, mommy likes snacking on these as well!
Milk or Chocolate Milk
There's a reason why they say milk does a body good. An 8oz Cup of Milk contains 8g of protein, plus 30% calcium too. I still pour them a glass of milk each morning with breakfast and whenever we dine out, I'll usually order water or chocolate milk only. No juice or sodas. Having chocolate in their milk is a real treat for them and at least I know they are having protein too.
GoGo squeeZ YogurtZ
My boys already like their applesauce pouches, but now the 100% natural brand offers the goodness of real yogurt and fruit on the go – no refrigeration needed! Even better? YogurtZ has no preservatives, 4g of protein and is a good source of calcium and vitamin D in each shelf-stable pouch. Plus, gluten and nut free too. So far, my boys have liked all four flavors from Banana to Berry.
|GoGo squeeZ YogurtZ|
Yummy Spoonfuls Nuggets
These frozen organic Chicken Broccoli Bites are packed with 17g of protein and great for a quick lunch or dinner item for the under 5 set - with just like homemade ingredients. Simply defrost, warm and serve. Also, use them to create mini chicken-burgers, or add to pasta sauce and salads. A healthy finger food for early eaters too. Available at Target.
|Yummy Spoonfuls Chicken Broccoli Bites|
Peanut Butter Energy Balls
Typically, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter equal 8 grams of protein, so slather it on bananas, bread, wherever you can. We use Skippy's Natural Peanut Butter.
Also, PB is a key ingredient in these easy, no-bake energy balls, which I've been on a huge kick making for my boys. Each week, I've tried different flavors and cereals to mix in. My boys now wake-up in the morning and help themselves to these in the freezer.
They are super easy to whip up, believe me, I'm not much of a baker. Although mine may not look as nicely rounded as the ones in the Pinterest recipe below, they still taste good. Plus, oats add even more health benefits. Ben even enjoys making them with me... sometimes.
|Peanut Butter, No-Bake Energy Balls|