3 Salads Kids Will Love

How to make salads kid friendly.

Think salads and kids don't mix? Think again.

Many kids are not too keen on those green things that adults call salad. They relate more to the "garnish" part of "salad garnish" than to the "salad" part - it's something that's meant to make your plate look pretty, not something to eat. They even worry that the green stuff might touch their burger or fries and somehow contaminate them.

I have one daughter who has always wolfed down green food. Right from when she was a baby, if it was green she'd eat it. I have another who eyes most green leafy things with the suspicion described above, although she will eat broccoli stalks - but not the florets. She will not touch the bits of radicchio or endive that most UK restaurants decorate plates with, and nor does she like the humble iceberg lettuce.

But there are 2 lettuces she is willing to eat, and the reasons why reveal that what we eat is not governed by taste buds alone, but by associations we make with food.

Make the salad look appealing

Kids make decisions based on more than taste alone, so presentation matters.
Kids make decisions based on more than taste alone, so presentation matters. | Source

The first lettuce my younger daughter ate was the Cos or Romaine lettuce, and the reason she ate it was because I tore the leaves in a particular way and presented them to my girls as "angels." I'll show you how to do this later in this article. The second lettuce my daughter is willing to eat is the Little Gem. This is actually a smaller version of Romaine lettuce and is slightly sweeter, but the main reason my daughter was even willing to try it was because of it's name. Jem is a shortened version of my husband's name: Jeremy. Although he is rarely called this by anyone other than his mother, our daughter associated the lettuces with the Dad she adores and so was happy to eat them! While not every child has such a conveniently named father, you probably have associations of your own - and if not they can help you to make angels!

With a little imagination and flexibility it's possible to come up variations on classic salads that are more suitable for children's tastes. Some suggestions now follow.

Homemade Coleslaw that kids will enjoy (also shown in the video above)

Supermarket coleslaw generally does not go down well with kids (or at least not the kids I know, and come to think of it, that includes me.) It has a slightly fizzy taste, the cabbage is usually soggy, and you need a microscope to see the carrot. And kids are not nuts about raw onions. I have adapted coleslaw to make it more kid-friendly, by missing out the onion and adding in apple and extra carrot instead, so giving a slight sweetness that kids love. I also use a mixture of yogurt and mayonnaise, rather than just mayonnaise, which makes this much healthier than regular coleslaw.

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Ready in: 10 min
Yields: Serves 6 - 8 people as a side salad


  • 1 small cabbage, (weighing around 300 grams)
  • 2 carrots, peeled
  • 1 apple
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • 1 dessert spoon mayonnaise
Place all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well.
Place all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well. | Source


  1. Finely chop the cabbage.
  2. Grate the carrot.
  3. Grate the apple, keeping the skin on.
  4. Place all the above ingredients in a bowl along with the yogurt and mayonnaise.
  5. Mix well together, and then transfer to a serving bowl.

Alternative instructions

Roughly chop the vegetables, core the apple, put all into a food processer and process until finely chopped. Then add the yogurt and mayonnaise.

Good for if you are in a hurry!

She loved carrot and apple salad - though it was a bit messy at times!
She loved carrot and apple salad - though it was a bit messy at times! | Source

Apple and Carrot Salad - a great first salad for babies

This was my elder daughter's first taste of salad, and she used to wolf it down. (Except of course for the one time I proudly told my parents how well she ate it, and then she barely managed a mouthful!)

It probably appeals to babies because carrots and apples are naturally sweet.


This recipe makes enough for a baby and parent.

1 large or 2 small carrots

1 apple

1 dessertspoon of yogurt

a drizzle of olive oil


  1. Finely grate the carrot.
  2. Grate the apple. If your baby is fairly new to chewing, use the finest side of your grater for this too. This does tend to turn the apple to mush however, so for yourself you may want to use the coarser side.
  3. Place in a bowl. add the yogurt and olive oil and mix well together. (Or if your baby is having mushy apple and you are not, place in 2 separate bowls!)

The salad on the left has coarsely grated apple. The one on the right has finely grated; perfect for babies, but perhaps a bit mushy for you!
The salad on the left has coarsely grated apple. The one on the right has finely grated; perfect for babies, but perhaps a bit mushy for you! | Source
Hold the folded lettuce leaf at an angle.
Hold the folded lettuce leaf at an angle. | Source
Tear the lettuce.
Tear the lettuce. | Source
Open it out to make an angel!
Open it out to make an angel! | Source

How to make Lettuce Angels or Butterflies

These are best made with Romaine or Cos lettuce, but could also make them with Little Gem.

  1. First wash the lettuce thoroughly.
  2. Fold a lettuce leaf in half lengthways.
  3. Hold it in both hands, about 8 - 10 cm or 3 - 4 inches from the base. With your thumbs pointing diagonally, press on the crisp white middle part of the leaf and. (The tips of your thumbs should point towards the base of the leaf. This sounds complicated, but it's actually very easy.)
  4. Tear the leaf. The tear you make will create 2 wings pointing upwards, and looks like an angel. (Well you might need to use a little bit of imagination to see it as an angel, but small children usually have tons of that!)

If you do the same again, using a the next bit of the leaf, the result is shaped more like a butterfly. Of course, you are then left the top of the lettuce that's not so exciting in appearance - and guess what? You get to eat that!

Once you've done this, you can show your children how to do it and they will have fun making their own angels.

Serve the angels with halos made of cucumber slices, and with cherry tomatoes.

Lettuce Angels with Cucumber Halos!


Do your children like salad?

  • No, and I don't think these ideas will make any difference.
  • No, but I think they will if I try these ideas.
  • Yes, they already love salad, and we could have fun making these together.
See results without voting

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Comments 21 comments

myownlife profile image

myownlife 4 years ago from london

Really a great job and useful enough, and the making procedure in video is easily grabbed up.

dinkan53 profile image

dinkan53 4 years ago from India

My kid is small to have such salads, but surely I will make him in the future. Coleslaw, great and thanks for the video demonstration.

vespawoolf profile image

vespawoolf 4 years ago from Peru, South America

Great ideas and the lettuce "angels" are too cute! Very inventive ideas to get kids to eat their veggies. Voted up and shared!

Nettlemere profile image

Nettlemere 4 years ago from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

Can't believe you managed to make an entertaining video about coldslaw - you're very ingenious!

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States

I think you have some very good ideas to entice children to eat healthy. I liked your coleslaw recipe. I have never used an apple before and it sounds good. The video was good also UP!

ishwaryaa22 profile image

ishwaryaa22 4 years ago from Chennai, India

A helpful hub for those with children who are picky eaters. These salad options are not only for children but also for grown-ups as they are healthy, tasty and easy-to-make - except yes folding the lettuce leaves! The photos are attractive, including the photo of your cute daughter and the recipes are explained clearly. (Unfortunately, the video is not visible to me but nevertheless the rest of the hub is very good) Well-done!

Thanks for SHARING. Useful & Interesting. Voted up

Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 4 years ago from South Carolina

Loved the video that your daughter produced! Also enjoyed all the suggestions of how to present vegetables in a way that kids will be willing to taste them. As you say, a cool introduction and artistic presentation can help peak a child's curiosity enough to make them try different kinds of salads.

Voted up across the board except for funny.

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

myownlife, thanks for your comment and glad you enjoyed the video!

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

dinkan53, your baby will soon to able to eat the carrot and apple salad. My daughters loved it from an early age.

Thanks for your comment.

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Hi vespawoolf, the angels do need a little imagination, and it sounds like you’ve got plenty! The kids loved them when they were little. Thanks for your comment.

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Thanks Nettlemere, you are very kind!

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Thanks Pamela, I hope you enjoy the coleslaw - it’s great for adults too!

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

ishwaryaa22, yes, it is useful for picky eaters, and as you say whether they are kids or adults! I’m sorry you couldn’t see the video. Perhaps if you try a different browser you might have more luck as sometimes that has worked for me if I’d had a problem with a video. Thanks very much for your kind comment.

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Hi Happyboomernurse, and thanks! This was my first video hub and being a total video novice I enlisted help - but my daughter wanted to do most of it, though I did work out the idea! My kids love making videos and I’ve learned a lot from them.

I think presentation is important for most people really - it’s so much more enjoyable to eat food that looks gorgeous and salad often does (to me at least!)

Thanks for your comment.

Mmargie1966 profile image

Mmargie1966 4 years ago from Gainesville, GA

What wonderful ideas! I enjoyed the video as well. Voted up and useful!

RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

That is terrrific! Tell you daughter she did a BEAUTIFUL job! I loved that video and the hub!

Up and everything! Truly awesome:)

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author

Thanks Margie and Kelly.

ripplemaker profile image

ripplemaker 4 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

Lovely hub which I will pass to the teachers! I enjoyed this very much. Love and blessings. :)

Amanda Gee profile image

Amanda Gee 4 years ago from Cameron, Missouri

Those angels look so cute! I love it!

vox vocis profile image

vox vocis 4 years ago

I'll definitely try out this approach! Great ideas! I think babies won't mind their salad, but the older ones...we'll see!

Melovy profile image

Melovy 4 years ago from UK Author


Amanda Gee

vox vocis,

Thanks for your comments.

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