Kid-Friendly Vegetable Soup (+ how to serve it to picky eaters)
This kid-friendly vegetable soup recipe an easy and healthy dinner recipe the family will love. Bonus: I share different ways to serve this healthy soup so that even picky eaters are intrigued!Jump to Recipe
Tips for making this vegetable soup with your kids
Oodles of research shows that involving children in cooking not only teaches them a lifelong skill and promotes independence, but it also helps children to be more open and curious to trying new foods.
Why? Because when children cook the food they are about to eat, they instantly feel invested in that meal. They are proud of what they did and connect to the food in way that is beyond it just being served to them. Children who cook with adults have an an opportunity to explore the colors, textures, smells of each ingredient of a recipe prior to it coming together into a meal that they are being asked to eat.
Okay, so you are on board with cooking with your kids! But how do you involve them in cooking this kid-friendly vegetable soup? Here are a few ways to involve the youngest or newest chef in the cooking process.
- Have them clean the vegetables. This is a great job for even the youngest cook. Fill your sink with water or give them a large bowl with water and put them to work. If you have a vegetable brush, give them that so they can scrub those veggies squeaky clean and also explore the shape, color and texture of the veggies you are about to enjoy!
- Have them cut the veggies. Par boil the potatoes to make them softer and give your kiddo a children’s knife and put them to work. If you have a child who is older and/or has learned knife safety skills, feel free to use your best judgment about what kind of knife to let him.her use.
- Have them help measure ingredients. For younger children, help them pure the broth into measuring cups hand-over-hand (meaning you are both holding the containers or measuring cups/spoons). For older children, let them do this alone. This is a great opportunity to explore the use of fractions in real life and explain the difference between a teaspoon and a tablespoon.
- Let them stir. Whether its before it goes onto the stove or with you right there to ensure their safety while it is cooking, letting children see the kid-friendly vegetable soup all come together can be a wonderful way to get them excited about eating it.
Helpful tools to have when cooking with kids
Different ways to serve kid-friendly vegetable soup
Every child is different and which way you serve your child this kid-friendly vegetable soup is going to depend on who he/she uniquely is.
If your child is warming up to eating different textures, try blending the soup
This will create an even texture and consistency for children with a texture sensitivity. Blend it is smooth as your child prefers or leave it a little chunky to help them start to embrace different textures.
TIP: Serve it with some crackers, bread or other cut veggies and treat like a warm dip! OR, in a cup and let them drink it like a warm smoothie!
If your child likes to enjoy foods separately, try deconstructing the soup
After the soup is cooked, separate the elements of the soup on your child’s plate so he/she can enjoy the each part of the soup individually. This especially helpful if the veggies in this soup are new for you child, as deconstructing can help remove the overwhelm a child might feel seeing a big bowl of new foods in front of them.
If your child takes cues from others, enjoy the soup WITH them
Truthfully, I think this is most children and I always suggest enjoying meals together whenever possible. However, it is especially helpful when trying out a new recipe or food. Children will look to you (and other people they are eating with) to see how you feel about a new food to help him/her gauge if it feels “safe” enough to try.
Role model enjoying the soup and being vocal about it (“Oh, I really love the flavor!” or “The potatoes are really delicious.”).
If your child feels intimidated by new foods serve the soup with familiar, enjoyed foods so that he/she sees something they KNOW they enjoy on their plate. Even if your child doesn’t eat the soup this time, he/she will have benefited from the exposure of having in front of them AND they will still eat something at the meal. We all feel a little braver in new situations when se have something familiar nearby.
Suggested adaptations for making kid-friendly vegetable soup
- Add a protein. Add some cooked chickpeas or cooked chicken!
- Add a complex carbohydrate. Like pasta, rice or quinoa.
- Add whatever vegetables you have on hand. Leeks, carrots and celery would also be delicious in this soup, but feel free to get creative and use whatever you have.
- Skip the greens. If your child (or you) is not a green fan, skip the greens all together and enjoy the soup as is.
Want to make sure any spinach leftover after making this Kid-Friendly Vegetable Soup doesn’t go to waste? Check out my tips & tricks for keeping spinach fresh all week!
Other kid-friendly soup recipes
- Instant Pot Lentil Soup (+ slow cooker instructions)
- Mexican Slow Cooker Chicken Stew
- Slow Cooker Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew
- Instant Pot Creamy Tomato Basil Soup
- Slow Cooker Butternut Squash + Apple Soup
Kid-Friendly Vegetable Soup
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced, or to taste
- 1 large brown or yellow onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 pounds potatoes, cut into 1 inch pieces. I used a blend of Russet and purple potatoes
- 8 cups vegetable broth, or your favorite broth
- 28 ounces crushed or diced tomatoes
- 1-2 handfuls baby spinach, roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups frozen peas
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- large pot
- In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Once oil is hot, add the garlic and onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
- Add broth and raise heat. Bring to boil.
- Carefully add potatoes and bring back to a boil. Lower heat and let the soup simmer for 20 minutes uncovered.
- Stir in tomatoes and heat for 2-3 minutes.
- Stir in spinach and frozen peas and stir until the spinach wilts and the peas are warmed through.
- Season with nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste.
- Enjoy warm topped to avocado, grated cheese, with cooked rice or as is.