When it comes to healthy meal ideas, fish is at the top of the list. It is high in protein, a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids and naturally low in calories and fat. However, despite its health benefits, you may have a difficult time convincing your kids to give fish a try. If you're struggling to get your kids to eat fish, finding tasty accompaniments for the meal can often help persuade them. There are a variety of condiments and sides that pair well with fish and help turn it into a meal that the entire family enjoys.
If you have a tough time getting your kids to eat fish, serving it with a sauce may help your efforts. The tartness of citrus fruits pairs well with the mild taste of fish, so you can whip up a variety of simple sauces using lemon, lime or orange juice. A fresh tomato sauce is another option that may remind kids of spaghetti and meatballs enough to convince them to give fish a chance. You can also serve grilled fish with an old favorite like ranch dressing. If you're serving a lightly fried fish, classic tartar sauce can be used for dipping.
Serving your fish with salsa is another way to make it more appealing to kids. It is an especially flavorful accompaniment for grilled fish in the summer, but works well with broiled dishes as well. Since most fish has a mild taste, you can use a traditional tomato-based salsa and add as much spice with garlic and jalapenos as you desire. However, if your kids are very picky eaters, a fruit salsa may be a more appealing option. Try a mango, pineapple or peach salsa based on your kids' preferences.
If you're looking for a light side dish to accompany your fish dish, coleslaw is a classic option. Pair traditional coleslaw made with green or red cabbage mixed with creamy slaw dressing with virtually any type of fish. When you're short on time, you can even pick up pre-shredded coleslaw from your grocery store's deli section. However, if you're looking for a more unique side dish, you can change up the basic slaw recipe. Add shredded carrots, peppers, onions or pickles for added texture and taste. You can also add fruit, like pineapple, apple and mango, or incorporate fresh herbs like dill and cilantro.
Rice is another traditional side dish option for fish because its versatility allows you to flavor it with a variety of spices that complement your fish recipe. For a healthier option, forego white rice and choose a brown variety instead. You can mix in garlic, onions, red pepper flakes, saffron and other herbs to give the rice added kick. If your kids aren't fans of plain rice or spices, stir in nuts, raisins or dried cranberries for sweetness and texture.
- "The Joy of Cooking"; Irma S. Rombauer, et al.; 1997
- "The Smart Chicken and Fish Cookbook"; Jane Kinderlehrer; 2002
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