Fresh From the Farmer’s Market: Kid-friendly Recipes to Foster Healthy Eating

By Katie Zampini

In our fast-paced world of rushed meals, there’s a good chance your child can name more processed “convenience” foods than fruits or vegetables. The vast assortment of ready-made foods available in grocery stores is astonishing, and one way to help kids make healthy choices is to include a wide variety of options. Enter the Farmer’s Market.
Mississippi has a treasure in its agricultural industry, and thus provides ample opportunity to visit farmer’s markets and show children a huge variety of produce. Take your child to a Farmer’s Market and challenge them to choose one or two items they have never tried before to incorporate into a meal that week. Allowing your child to participate in the choosing of the produce will encourage them to try new things and possibly give them a greater chance of enjoying a new fruit or vegetable as well.
Try one of the two recipes in this month’s article as inspiration for how to serve your child’s produce selections: a homemade, low-fat
ranch dressing for dipping vegetables, and a whole grain, flax seed pizza crust to be topped with farmer’s market finds! You can feel good about both recipes: they are all natural, and you know they are not loaded with preservatives, artificial ingredients, and MSG.

Homemade Ranch Dressing:

  • Dried chives, 2 tsp
  • Dried dill, 1 ½ tsp
  • Garlic powder, 2 tsp
  • Dried onion flakes, 2 tsp
  • Dried parsley, 2 tbsp
  • Black pepper, 1 tsp
  • Sea salt, 1 tsp
  • Dried buttermilk, 1/3 cup

Combine all dry ingredients, and blend with plain, nonfat Greek yogurt according to taste. Start with a cup of yogurt, and use more for a milder flavor.

Whole Grain Flax Seed Pizza Dough and Toppings:

  • ¾ cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 and ¼ teaspoons rapid rise yeast
  • ¾ cup unbleached bread flour
  • ¾ cup whole wheat flour
  • ¼ cup ground flax seeds
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for coating dough and greasing baking sheet

Featured Toppings (Use any you choose!):

  • Sliced red onion
  • Crushed garlic
  • Fresh, sliced tomatoes
  • Yellow and Red peppers, diced
  • Fresh, sliced basil
  • Olive Oil
  • Mozzarella cheese
  1. Combine warm water (not hot), with honey and yeast, and allow it to sit for at least 5 minutes for the yeast to activate.
  2. Combine all other dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and blend.
  3. Add two tablespoons of olive oil plus the yeast mixture to the flour mixture and combine until it forms a ball of dough that is not sticky. Add more flour, one small spoonful at a time if necessary to decrease any stickiness.
  4. Coat your finished dough with some extra olive oil and place in a large bowl, covered lightly with a kitchen towel to rise for at least one hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 435 degrees F. Prepare a baking sheet with olive oil.
  6. While dough is rising, roast your vegetable toppings. Fresh vegetables should be roasted during this time so that they are not soggy on your pizza! Just use about a tablespoon of olive oil on your chopped vegetables with crushed garlic, and put in the pre-heated oven for twenty minutes.
  7. When the dough has doubled in size, spread your dough thinly across the baking sheet.
  8. Top dough with desired ingredients, and bake in the hot oven for 13-15 minutes.