The Kids’ Menu Bites

I had a revelation the other night.  Like Newton discovering gravity after the apple hit him on the head, I realized that my eight year old daughter is ready to stop ordering off of the kids’ menu.  Hell, all of my kids can stop ordering off of the kids’ menu!  Heck yes!  How was the moment like the apple hitting Newton’s head?  It happened after my daughter’s mini corn dog slipped out of its fried sheath and squirted onto the floor.  Divine intervention.  The kids’ menu bites, pun intended.

Is there anything less creative in modern society than the kids’ menu?  Is there a collective assortment of food anywhere else that is more of a nutritional wasteland?  Ironically, the target audience is the segment most in need of quality nutrition.  Beyond that, any of these foods could be made in our own kitchens with far less pain than we’ll endure attempting to get through an entire meal in public with the crazy people that are our children.  And, even if we suck at cooking, will probably taste better.

You then have the opportunity to pick up crayons the entire night as they continuously roll onto the floor.  You are Sysiphus with coloring implements.

Every kids’ menu has the same items:  chicken tenders (snooze), hamburger (snooze), hot dog/corn dog (snooze), grilled cheese (snooze), quesadilla (Mexican grilled cheese), cheese pizza (Italian grilled cheese), macaroni and cheese (grilled cheese on pasta).

Kids' menu

A slice of fine kids’s menus/coloring pages from a Google image search.

A taco works its way into the mix from time to time (as does PB&J and apparently fried shrimp).  Choice of sides include French fries, chips, apple sauce, or vegetables (that no adult would eat let alone a child).  100% from concentrate juice, soda or whole milk are all available to quench your child’s thirst for diabetes.  Of course, there are usually crayons and a coloring sheet (often the exciting menu itself) to cap off the culinary experience.  You then have the opportunity to pick up crayons the entire night as they continuously roll onto the floor.  You are Sysiphus with coloring implements.

I realize that kids aren’t the most experimental eaters, likely because we train them not to be with crappy kids’ menus.  Are the chefs and menu planners at our restaurants lazy, or are we as parents?  I’m blaming us.

As the corn dog rolled around the floor, it dawned on me that I could feed all of my children by simply splitting one item off of the standard menu.  Wow, I’m a genius.  Divide the oversize adult portions!  They’ll eat healthier, and I’ll probably save some money.  If they still want to color I’ll figure out how to score some of those clever kids’ menus.  The crayons rolling on the floor?  No idea on that one.