Every vegan parent finds themselves searching for kid friendly vegan recipes from time to time. That’s why I decided to share 15 recipes from the blog that my 2 year old vegan toddler can’t get enough of! This collection of kid friendly vegan meals includes breakfasts, snacks, main courses and side dishes that are healthy and flavorful enough for picky eaters to love.
When planning kid friendly vegan meals for baby J, I try to stick to wholesome, not overly processed foods, with plenty of carbs, healthy fats, and protein. See a sample of her vegan toddler menu on a typical day.
I try not to overthink the nutritional content of every meal and snack: as long as she eats a healthy variety of foods, she’ll get everything she needs. For nutrients that are hard to find in adequate amounts in vegan diet (vitamins B12 an D3) we use supplements. See my kid-friendly vegan vitamin picks in my Amazon store.
We are lucky that our toddler isn’t overly picky – I’m knocking on wood as I’m writing this 🙂 Baby J is pretty adventurous in her food preferences. She always wants to try whatever Rob and I are eating. She doesn’t always end up liking those things, but at least she learns what they taste like.
One rule Rob and I have stuck to since baby J first started eating solid foods: If she tries something and doesn’t like it, we react neutrally and don’t force her to eat that. We will offer that food to her again in a little while – more often than not she’ll end up eating it the second or third time around.
If you’ve found this post while searching for vegan meals for picky eaters, I highly recommend trying this approach. It is considered that children sometimes need to try a food ten or fifteen times until they develop a taste for it. I can’t guarantee that Brussels sprouts will happen in your kid’s immediate future, but who knows?
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This simple steel cut oatmeal is my daughter's go-to breakfast on busy mornings when I don't have time to make anything more elaborate. It's healthy, filling, and really easy to make in the Instant Pot.
I usually make a big batch of these oats once a week, and then reheat single serving portions with a splash of almond milk for baby J's breakfast.
On days when we have more time in the morning, I often make a batch of these vegan pancakes for the whole family. Because of chocolate chips and blueberries, they make our breakfast a special treat. Believe it or not, they are really easy to make: you probably have all the ingredients at home right now!
Butternut squash is usually a safe bet as a vegetable side for baby J. She's had it roasted both with Indian and Italian spices, and liked both equally. I usually serve it with lentils, avocado, and whatever vegetables I have in the fridge that day.
I know what you're thinking - there's no way a toddler would ever eat Brussels sprouts! That's what I thought too until one night I put a few roasted Brussels sprouts in baby J's dish along with other foods, and by the time I made my own plate, she scarfed down every last piece of her sprouts!
This is the recipe I've been using to make my toddler-adored Brussels sprouts. Even if you're not usually a fan of sprouts, I'm sure you'll enjoy them roasted this way just like my daughter does.
Once baby J became proficient with utensils, I started serving her various soups. This simple vegan soup with lentils, rice, and cauliflower quickly became one of her favorites. It's a good source of protein, fiber, and healthy carbs.
I often mix in some chopped avocado to make its fat content a little higher (kids need more fats in their diets than adults because fat is used for a variety of growing tissues and organs including brain).
This vegan minestrone is another well-enjoyed soup in baby J's diet. She loves picking out pieces of potatoes and pasta with her hands, and dips bread in her bowl to soak up the broth (of course she uses her spoon too).
I have instructions to make this minestrone soup both in the Instant pot and on stovetop - click the button below to see how it's done.
These BBQ chickpeas and rice are a delight both for baby J and me: they are flavorful, which she likes, and very easy to make, which I find helpful. I usually make them with a homemade barbecue sauce using a recipe in this post, but if you want to make things even easier, feel free to use a store-bought sauce.
Baby J wasn't immediately sold on these eggplant rollups, but eventually she warmed up to the familiar flavors of tomato sauce and potatoes. As for the eggplant, sometimes she eats every last bit, while other times she won't touch it. Just what you'd expect from a two year old 🙂
This fajita filling with soy curls is another dish that took a few tries before baby J started eating it regularly. Since she's been vegan from birth, she's never had meat, so the meatiness of soy curls wasn't anything special to her.
She does like vegan "chicken" nuggets, so once I told her that the soy curls were "just like nuggets", she eventually gave them a try. These days she'll eat a good-sized serving of this fajita filling every time I make it.
Any kid has a soft spot for mac and cheese, so it was only natural for baby J to enjoy my version of it. She's also a big fan of broccoli, so its presence isn't a turnoff for her. If your kids (or you) aren't into broccoli, feel free to skip it, and just add a bit more pasta to make up for the volume difference.
This is hands down baby J's favorite recipe from the blog as of today. When her speaking skills started getting better at 18-20 months, she would point at boxes of jumbo shells at the grocery store and exclaim, "Stuffed shells!"
I usually give her a couple of these cut up into quarters when we sit down to dinner, but lately she's asked to keep the shells whole. That gives me lots of opportunity to practice my patience as I watch her make a mess of the spinach-ricotta filling 🙂
This bruschetta pasta is one of the quickest recipes from the blog, taking only about 10 minutes to make. It's also one of my earliest recipes, hence the less than stellar pictures 🙂
Anyway, baby J likes the simplicity of spaghetti noodles (which I usually cut up for her to make them shorter) tossed in a simple tomato-based sauce. I try to serve these with some extra veggies on the side.
You're probably surprised to see a spicy Cajun classic like jambalaya on a toddler-friendly vegan recipe list. Believe it or not, baby J enjoys spicy food, so as long as I don't jack up the Cajun seasoning to the max, she'll eat it just fine.
If your toddler isn't a fan of spicy foods, you may want to skip this recipe for now - although you never know, they may surprise you.
For a while baby J wasn't very proficient with eating hard cookies or crackers, so these lovely vegan oatmeal-raisin cookies became one of her favorite sweet treats. Raisins are a hit or miss with her: sometimes she picks them out, while other times she eats every last bit.
If you've always found oatmeal-raisin cookies underwhelming, I suggest that you try this recipe - it's gotten rave reviews both from kids and adults.
I don't think I need to sell you on chocolate muffins, and it's probably safe to think that you trust me that baby J loves these. In fact, our whole family is a fan: not only do these muffins taste heavenly, they are also quite healthy, made with no oil and hiding an entire grated zucchini in every batch (but you'd never tell that zucchini part, of course).
So if you'd like your kids to eat more vegetables, I can't think of a better way to do it than by offering them some chocolate muffins. Yum!
I hope my list of kid friendly vegan recipes gives you plenty of ideas for vegan meals that your whole family will enjoy!
Question for you: What are your kids’ favorite vegan recipes?Please share below!
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Alina first made a switch to a vegan diet in 2013 to optimize her athletic performance as a marathon runner. Eventually she embraced veganism as a way to be kinder to fellow living beings and the environment. Alina hopes that this blog helps its readers on their path to becoming vegan and making this world a better place.
Welcome to Vegan Runner Eats! My name is Alina, and my goal is to show you that leading a vegan lifestyle can be easy, healthy and enjoyable. I share delicious plant-based recipes, cooking tips, insights on vegan parenting, traveling, and staying fit as a mom. See the most popular posts from the blog over here.