Designing a Healthy Menu for Kids at Your Restaurant

Family enjoying meal sitting at cafe table

You’ve put a lot of work into your menuing, from Sunday brunch options to dinner specials. But there’s one menu that often gets overlooked. Creating a healthy menu for kids allows you to solidify your restaurant as a family friendly environment.

Foodbuy Foodservice teamed up with Mott’s, the #1 Trusted and Preferred Applesauce Brand, to give you the keys to designing a kid’s menu that will please both children and their parents.

Think About Taste, Texture, and Appearance

It’s no mystery why children are usually the pickiest eaters. Kids are busy learning everything about the world. It’s easy for many of them to get overwhelmed by all the new things and ideas they encounter. That’s why it’s important to focus on three factors when creating kid’s meals: taste, texture, and appearance.

Kids will want to eat things that they know taste good, just like adults. The difference is that children have less varied experience with foods. There are fewer tastes, textures, and appearances that they’re comfortable trying. That’s where familiarity is key. You’ll want your menu items to look and taste familiar.

The base of your healthy menu for kids should be the classics – items like mac and cheese, PB&J, and chicken tenders. Then, you’ll want to take these meals to the next level by putting a healthy spin on them.

Family Eating Meal At Outdoor Restaurant Together, Smiling

Elevate the Classics

So, you have your basic items that you know the kids will like. How do you make them healthy enough to please parents? The key is to add – not subtract. You can make regular kid’s menu items more nutrient dense by:


Opting for whole grain or multi grain bread for sandwiches

Offering fruit and vegetable sides, like slices carrots or apples

Mixing hidden vegetables into sauces and dips


Get Started With Easy Healthy Recipes

Not sure where to start when it comes to crafting your healthy menu for kids? Try these two Mott’s recipes:



¼ cup Mott’s® No Sugar Added Applesauce Apple

1 8-inch flour tortilla

1 tbsp light cream cheese

1 pinch ground cinnamon

Nonstick cooking spray


Spread one side of tortilla evenly with cream cheese. Spread applesauce evenly over cream cheese and sprinkle with cinnamon. Fold tortilla in half.

Spray sauté pan with nonstick spray and heat over medium heat.

Place folded tortilla in pan, cook 2 minutes on each side until lightly browned. Remove quesadilla to serving plate.

Allow to cool slightly before cutting.

Makes: 1 serving.


Choco-Bloc Pudding


1 cup Mott’s® Applesauce Apple

1 cup 2% low-fat milk, divided

2 tbsp cornstarch

½ cup semisweet chocolate chips

⅓ cup granulated sugar


Combine ¼ cup milk and cornstarch in small bowl, mixing until cornstarch is thoroughly dissolved.

Combine applesauce, remaining ¾ cup milk, chocolate chips, and sugar in heavy saucepan over medium heat. Stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth and simmering.

Stir in cornstarch mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, 1-2 minutes.

Remove from heat and cool.

Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Makes: 6 servings.


Mott’s is made with real apples and 180+ years of expertise. Their unique process delivers best-in-class applesauce in taste and texture. Ask your account manager about ordering Mott’s apple sauce today. You can opt for these recommended products:

  • 10002263 3.9OZ Motts AS APL UNSW Tub 6PKX12
  • 10002269 4OZ Motts AS Apple Tub 6PKX12

You can find more ideas in the Mott’s recipe library.



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