This Halloween, scare your kids into smart snacking by turning vegetables into monsters. You can use any combination of vegetables, both raw and cooked, that you can imagine. Vegetables have such variety in color and shape–not to mention their peculiar, misshapen beauty–that their haphazard mixings will produce the best monsters. And if the kids munch on a few pieces while creating? All the better.
To make veggie monsters, you just need to start with a good base for the face. And then add your details, such as eyes, hair, mouths, or feet, with smaller veggies.
Shown in the top row above are: Squash slices, mushrooms, cucumbers and pepper slices. Next, you’ll need some fun sticks and goofier shapes for hair, mouths, arms, legs, or other body parts. Shown in the middle row are: Broccoli, radishes, asparagus, carrots, string beans, snap peas and celery. Finally, you’ll need little pieces for eyes, noses, teeth or other details. Shown in the bottom row are: Dried apricots, almonds, corn, and raisins. Cheese slices also come in handy, as you can cut the slices into shapes. Some more options, not shown: Olives make great eyes. Bean sprouts make great hair. Peas, spinach leaves, eggplant, water chestnuts, butternut squash, and cauliflower are more choices, too.
Here are a few ideas:
To make the silly monster, arrange corn “teeth” between two snap peas. Place raisins on two slices of radishes for the eyes.
To make the ghost, just put raisins (or olive pieces) on a mushroom.
For the Frankenstein, slice a piece of green pepper and place on top of a string bean (the bolts). On top, place raisin pieces for the eyes, an almond slice for the nose and a slice of carrot for the mouth. Arrange raisins for the hair.
To make the mummy, cut a long slice of cucumber or mini cucumber. Cut a slice of cheese into strips and arrange criss-crossed on the cucumber. Add a couple bits of raisin for the eyes.
For the medusa, arrange a thick slice of squash beneath an assortment of string beans and asparagus tips, the curlier the string beans, the better. Add raisin bits for eyes, a carrot slice for the mouth and the end of a radish for the nose.
To make the Cyclops monster, arrange a raisin on a slice of radish and place above some broccoli. Add a celery leg and asparagus tip feet if you like.
Don’t forget fruit! Fruit opens up your monster options even more. Shown here is a stack of dried apricots with a bit of radish peel for the tongue. Use a food coloring marker (found in the craft store or online) to draw dots on Kix cereal for eyes and place on top. Or, have monsters peeking at you. Tuck the eyes on the peanut butter in between apple slices.
Here’s one for BIG KIDS only. Animals attack! Cut a pepper in half and remove the seeds. Place a clean toy, an animal or action figure, in the pepper and fill with Kix cereal, peas, or corn so the toy is “climbing” out. Or better yet, have the hand of an action figure reaching through the cereal. Be sure not to surprise kids with this one so they know that there are inedible pieces in their snack! And be sure they remove the toys before eating.