Father and Daughter in the Kitchen

Play with Your Food

This week in the STRONG Challenge, we’re focusing on Play On! I can’t think of anything better than playing with your food. I’m not talking about pushing it around on your plate and not eating it, or having a food fight at the dinner table, but rather having fun with some creative activities you can do in the kitchen or at the dinner table.

I always wanted my daughter to enjoy food and cooking with me. So, when it came time for meals, we would make food into a game. Playing with your food can be a creative activity and stimulate your senses. The STRONG Challenge is all about reconnecting, spending time, and growing healthier. Here are a few ways to have fun in the kitchen and maybe even learn about and try some new foods!

Make a Food Collage

This is a fun activity for kids of all ages! Cut and slice fresh fruits and vegetables up to create a piece of artwork. Sculpt a silly face using grape tomatoes or cucumber rounds for eyes, sliced avocado can be the eyebrows, create a nose from a carrot, and a slice of red pepper for the mouth! You could also make a palm tree with a banana trunk and kiwi as leaves. See what else you can come up with! Cars? Boats? Houses?

Take a photo and share them in the STRONG Challenge Facebook group for all of us to see!

Host a Family-friendly Cooking Challenge

Split your family up into two teams, and pick an ingredient or two that every chef must use in their dish. Give yourselves a time limit, and see who can come up with the best and most creative meal. Enjoy your meal together and compliment each other on a job well done!

Shake it Up

Sure, whipped cream is easy to make, but have you ever thought of making it while having a dance contest? It’s fun for the whole family and helps you get a little exercise along the way!

  1. Place 1 cup of heavy whipping cream and 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar in a cold jar or container. The container should have enough room for the cream to expand.
    Tip: Make sure it’s sealed tightly to avoid any mishaps!
  2. Put on some music and dance with the container, shaking it vigorously while passing it from person to person.
    Tip: Be careful not to shake for too long, unless you want to make butter!
  3. When you’re done, the cream should be thick and you can use it for dessert. It’s especially delicious over some freshly-cut fruit or berries.
    Tip: Check out our recipe for Berry Salad if you want our take on a classic treat!

Blindfolded Taste/Smell Test

Set up small jars with different spices, maybe some lemon or lime; herbs like cilantro, dill, or parsley, onion, banana; or whatever you have on hand. Blindfold your family members and have them guess what the ingredients are.

Grocery Store Scavenger Hunt

This is perhaps one of my favorite activities. Here’s how you play. Create a list for your next trip to the grocery store and have your kids find each of the items. (These are just a few suggestions.) See what else you can think of!

Example Grocery Story Scavenger Hunt:

  1. Find a fruit or vegetable for each color of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet.
  2. Find one item in the produce section that came from the state of Florida.
  3. Find a cheese that came from a foreign country.
  4. Find a food you’ve never tried before.
  5. Find a package that has a recipe on it and make the recipe.
  6. What is the recommended serving size of pasta?

Let us know what other ways you have come up with to play with your food, and don’t forget to tune into another Healthy Living LIVE on Facebook with me coming October 22. We’ll be making breakfast for dinner, and on the menu is a fall favorite in our house: pumpkin pancakes!

I hope to see you there, and I wish you the best in your second week of the STRONG Challenge. Until next week!