Mac And Cheese with Broccoli

Broccoli is a member of the cruciferous vegetable family like cauliflower, Brussel sprouts, and cabbage. A one-cup serving of this veggie is chock full of nutrients- vitamin K, vitamin C, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and potassium to name a few. Broccoli is also an excellent source of fiber, which boasts benefits such as stabilizing blood sugar, supporting heart health, and even reducing the risk of some cancers.

Broccoli is a cool-weather vegetable and is in season between October and April. It will last between 3-5 days in the refrigerator. Do not forget to give your greens a cold rinse before eating- it prevents food-borne illness.

Broccoli is a versatile vegetable. Raw, chopped broccoli makes an excellent dipper in sauces like low-fat ranch dressing or hummus. Steamed broccoli can be a quick and easy side to accompany any meal. Consider roasting broccoli to give it a unique flavor with a splash of heart-healthy oil (like avocado or olive oil) and simple seasonings such as garlic and rosemary. The versatility of broccoli also makes it a great addition to some of your favorite dishes like soups, quiches, or sheet-pan dinners. Broccoli can even be scrambled with eggs and cheese in the morning to add a little green to your breakfast or a salad for lunch.

Broccoli can be a great addition to your little one’s diet as well as your own. Involving your kids in the kitchen fosters an opportunity to encourage your children to try new foods! Here are some tips for introducing broccoli to your little ones in the kitchen!

  • Children 2 and Under Can
    • Learn about the colors of broccoli, and practice saying the name!
    • Taste small amounts of broccoli, prepared in age appropriate ways
  • 3 Year Old Children Can
    • Rinse your broccoli before serving
    • Snap florets off the head of broccoli
    • Dip small broccoli florets into taste tips!
    • Arrange veggie trays including broccoli
  • 4 Year Old Children Can
    • Measure broccoli with a measuring cup
    • Practice cutting broccoli into pieces with a plastic or dull knife (with adult supervision)
    • Season broccoli with spices before being roasted

 

Want to try a new way to incorporate broccoli into your weeknight meals? Try this cheesy and delicious stove top macaroni and cheese!
https://cookingmatters.org/recipe/stove-top-macaroni-and-cheese/

For more tips on involving kids in the kitchen, check out the Cooking Matters website! 
https://cookingmatters.org/