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Deceptively Delicious: Simple Secrets to Get Your Kids Eating Good Food

3.39  ·  Rating Details ·  18,008 Ratings  ·  669 Reviews
It has become common knowledge that childhood obesity rates are increasing every year. But the rates continue to rise. And between busy work schedules and the inconvenient truth that kids simply refuse to eat vegetables and other healthy foods, how can average parents ensure their kids are getting the proper nutrition and avoiding bad eating habits?

As a mother of three, Je
ebook, 208 pages
Published October 6th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published October 5th 2007)
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Aug 17, 2008 Kate rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I hate this book. Obviously, I'm not trying to be objective, and I'm kind of in a bad mood as I'm writing this :(

I feel like this BOOK is deceptive!

The deal is, if you want to "sneak" healthy stuff into kids' foods (or, into your own food, as I was hoping to do)you have to make an actual major lifestyle change: prepare to spend hours at a time to boiling up vegetables and and liquefying them in a blender, then freezing them for a future date when you can trick your kids into eating them by sayin
Jan 10, 2008 Lisa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Just reading the recipes made my stomach turn.

You want your kiddos to eat more fruits and veggies? You have to start them at the baby stage.

If you are trying to do damage control and educate your kid's taste buds at pre-school age forward, I still don't see how these recipes could work.

I understand that's what this author is trying to do, but the tiny amounts of pureed veggies added to normal recipes do not provide enough of a nutrional boost to outweigh the difference in taste and will not in
Jan 22, 2008 Emma rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I prefer "sneaky chef" and use those recipes more often so far, but you can certainly get some great ideas here as well.
As a mommy to a 4 year old boy with autism and resulting food sensory (not to mention behavioral and extreme "fear of the unknown") issues, both books are real life-savers. I feel much better about the food I give to my kids when I sneak these veggies in and the recipes I have tried so far really are quite good. To pass the taste test in my household is a big deal!
While I ackn
Jan 03, 2008 Rebecca rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookbooks
When I first heard the buzz about this cookbook I was somewhat excited. I'm a cookbook junkie and love trying new things. I checked my local book stores, the book was sold out and had waiting lists! This knowledge only made the book more enticing to me. I happened upon the elusive book(on sale!) in a supermarket a few days later and I snatched the only copy without first flipping through the pages, afterall books with waiting lists can't be wrong. I was sorely disappointed!

Honestly, when adding
Books Ring Mah Bell

I'm not going to puree spinach in hide it in brownies. No way.
Jan 07, 2010 Jessica rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookbooks
Seinfeld is so caught up in making sure everything her kids eat has vegetables in it, that she doesn't seem to care what their cholesterol is like! It seems like everything in this book is fried, and she always uses margarine, never butter. Margarine is TERRIBLE for you! Egad! I'm also baffled by places where things like applesauce can easily be substituted for oil (as in cakes or banana bread), yet she lists a big ol' 1/2 c. of oil in the ingredients along with something like pureed navy beans ...more
Jul 10, 2008 Elizabeth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Desperate parents of picky eaters
Shelves: cookbooks
Things I did not like about this book:
1. Children's cookbooks depress me.
2. Cookbook from the library? Ick.
3. Jessica Seinfeld? You know she really has a staff of gourmet chefs.
4. As with most cookbooks, this one is light on vegetarian and egg- and milk-free options.
5. (Most importantly) I'm not sure I agree with the whole sneaky food thing. Fruits and vegetables are SO good. Kids should just want to eat them if you offer them enough, right? This deception bothers me.
6. The stocking up thing sh
Kelli Oliver George
First, I feel I should confess that I have a Cookbook Compulsion. I LOVE reading what I refer to as my Kitchen Porn and I do have a collection of cookbooks that I like to peruse just for fun. One of my most treasured cookbooks is my Boston Cooking School Cook Book by Fannie Farmer. I will probably never actually cook something from Fannie Farmer's selections, but it is still fun to read. I also have my grandma's first ever cookbook she purchased as a newlywed back in the 40s. And I own a copy of ...more
I was curious about this book so I signed it out from the library. I'd read an article in Vegetarian Times a couple of years ago suggesting the idea of adding veggie purees to kids' foods, so I knew the basic idea wasn't all that original, but I liked the general concept and thought I'd check it out.

I've only tried two recipes so far and I probably won't try others simply because the two I tried didn't work very well.
When I tried to make the tofu nuggets, the puree wouldn't stick to the tofu a
Oct 14, 2007 Kimberly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Parents of picky eaters, or picky eaters themselves
As the parent of a child who eats nothing but pancakes and PB& J (on whole wheat, at least), I bought this book the second I saw it on the today show. Also, chocolate pudding loaded with avocado and only 69 calories shows some promise for me as well!
I have glanced at this and so far I am still excited, even though I have heard the recipes aren't all they are cracked up to be.
Mar 03, 2008 Lara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've had this for a few months and went through the grueling process of making my own purees and freezing them in ice cube trays (my sister-in-law uses baby food...I thought I'd be ultra frugal) but my children are just too darn smart for their own good. They asked what I was making and now ask if I'm cooking anything with that yucky spinach puree for dinner, because they definitely don't want any of that. In all that time, I've made just two recipes from the book and they didn't like either one ...more
Sep 03, 2008 Annalisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Annalisa by: my mom gave it to me for Christmas
Shelves: resource, non-fiction
I am always looking for alternate ingredients for recipes loaded with a lot of caloric, low-nutrition ingredients. In the end I think foods taste better with more natural ingredients (and without butter dripping through them which I can't imagine people love; it makes me sick to my stomach). So for that I found some good tips in this book. Such as using an avocado instead of butter in a recipe. If you're going to have a treat, why not make a slightly healthier version?

However I highly disagree w
I don't have biological children of my own. My soon to be legal husband-Mr. Bunny- does. I have quite a few little nieces, nephews, and friends with children. Occasionally, I get to cook for them.

Also, I have two things the author does not. Which are a degree in culinary arts and a certification in nutrition. Take the above info as you will.


I had issues with this book, as did Mr. Bunny when I told him about it. We're both against hiding pureed vegetables and fruit in meals. It's a very
Oct 18, 2008 Regina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have a brand new blender and a 6 month old baby, so purees are right up my alley. We eat a ton of veggies, but the main purees in this book are veggies we DONT normally eat, (cauliflower, squash, sweet potato, carrot, and pumpkin.) Who really follows a recipe exactly, but the ideas of what veggies to mix into what kinds of food is so helpful. Also I can make puree for the baby and then use the rest in meals for the family.

My favorite is squash in hot chocolate. We got a ton of hot chocolate fo
Amanda Pearl
Dec 15, 2010 Amanda Pearl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: health
I really like this cookbook. I am single but I picked it up because I have never been a cooker and it looked like something pretty simple. I really like the presentation and the writing style. I don't think the purees take that long to prepare, but I am cooking for one. Maybe if I were cooking for a family it would be different. I have made the applesauce muffins (with carrot puree) and I LOVE them! They are delicious. I also made the scrambled eggs with spinach and the mac and cheese with cauli ...more
May 12, 2008 Rhonda rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was hoping for a slot in the "Good Moms Club" so I got this book in hopes of slipping veggies into my kids food unbenownst to them to get their veggie intake higher. Well, I didn't work.

I tried 4 different recipes and while the purees were hidden and the kids didn't know they were there, they still didn't love the food. To top it off, the preparation took *forever*. I guess once I have a stockpile of frozen purees it will cut down the prep-time but we didn't like the ones we tried
Apr 03, 2012 Meg rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Why not trick your kids into eating "good foods"? What a terrific idea! Because veggies are shite, everyone knows that. Right?

Or maybe you can just get in to the habit of modeling good eating, enjoying food, (vegetables included) and not making meals into a power struggle. It's just crazy enough that it might work.

This book sucks because its premise sucks. I haven't made any of the recipes because I would rather cook vegetables unhidden and offer them (over and over, at every meal) to my kid whi
Mar 04, 2009 ROSALIE rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Yesterday I checked this book out at the library and today I bought one for myself at Seagull Book. It's a smart book to have, full of tips and some serious concocting. This author is serious about her stuff, presented with vintage charm and a Mother-Knows-What's-Good-For-You strength.To be appreciated also are Vitamins and Minerals tables geared specifically for children.
I love the idea of fortifying fun foods with extra nutrition from vegetable purees. It's my husband who won't eat vegies if
Aug 07, 2008 Jodi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who wants to cook healthy for their family
Recommended to Jodi by: Yolanda Lane
One of my two favorite cookbooks. Although I have only tried a few of the actual recipes, the concept of using pureed veggies in my own recipes has been incredible! I now "sneak" buttnernut squash, carrots and sweet potatoes into many of our dinners, and no one knows! It's a great way to get your family to eat their veggies.
Jun 06, 2017 Alison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars. I love this cookbook! The reason that I didn't give it 5 stars is that some of the recipes call for margarine, which I don't use. But aside from that, I'm singing the book's praises. Jessica Seinfeld and the nutritionists whom she partnered with clearly put a lot of thought into each page. It has some outstanding recipes (my son and husband loved the sloppy Joe's and butternut squash soup!) many of which can be made vegetarian by substituting with tofu. Nutrition tips for kids are als ...more
Dec 30, 2007 Susan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: A mother with a whole lot of time! Ha!!
Well I've had this book for a while now, but haven't been compelled to do anything with it. Hard for me to think about all the time for prep and cooking for things that I wasn't sure Natasha (or I for that matter) would like. I tried a recipe out of Parent's mag, not from this book, but with the same concept - Sweet Potato bars. Natasha helped me make them, great fun cooking experience...until we tasted them. No Thank You!!! And I love sweet potatoes. I was just about to write it off as a good i ...more
K.B. Lever
Feb 09, 2013 K.B. Lever rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love finding ways to get my picky eater to eat her fruits and vegetables. Let me introduce you to Ava. She's four and refuses to eat anything that doesn't have the consistency of a cracker or taste like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. This year, she's actually stretched and will now eat hamburgers, hot dogs, pizza, and tacos. Unhealthy heaven. She refuses to eat pasta, most fruits, all vegetables (cooked or raw), beans, cakes or ice cream (which I'm okay with), or soups.

I found this book o
Nov 27, 2012 Kari rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book has been a lifesaver to get my daughter to eat healthier. I was reading previous reviews abd it struck me funny that moms hate this book because its extra work. Guess what. Thats kind of a part of being a parent.
The deception part stinks but when my daughter is older I am hoping she will have an open mind and love helping me with these recipes. Otherwise if you think about it when you make a cake do you tell your kids, by the way theres flour, sugar, eggs, etc in this i do
Apr 08, 2011 Kristen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book deserves five stars for creativity--the woman is ingenius not just in the idea to put vegetable purees into food, but to then create some amazing recipes that actually taste good. I read this in one sitting at Barnes and Nobles and was pretty impressed. But...the problem I see is that the future is sadly invisible in this type of approach to food and children. At what age do you stop making vegetable purees to put into your foods and start dishing out the real deal? And when that day c ...more
Sara ♥
Nov 19, 2009 Sara ♥ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I read through this cookbook. I now have a list of 27 recipes that look good enough to try, all with sneaky veggie puree additives... I'm all about sneak-food. Heehee!

I REALLY want to make the Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (substituting chocolate chips for the raisins, of course), and see if my husband will eat them, because they TOTALLY have ZUCCHINI in them! (No matter HOW I cook zucchini for myself, he WILL NOT eat it! So that would just serve him right.)

I wonder if I could get my husband to eat
Oct 07, 2011 Diana rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I grabbed this on a whim at the library. As I read through I realized that Jessica Seinfeld assumes that making purees of every vegetable (mostly squash, carrots or sweet potatoes) instantly makes a dish "healthy". Oh, look at me, so tricky and getting my kid to eat their veggies. I realize some kids are picky, but come on. As a mom, I also deal with reality and introduce my child to different foods so I do not have to spend all of my time mashing and pureeing different concoctions for her to ea ...more
Jun 19, 2015 Margaretann rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, cookbook
This book is deceptively ridiculous.

Awhile ago my interest was peaked when I saw the author being interviewed on a talk show. I like the idea of incorporating veggies into traditional recipes for an added boost of nutrition (and I have a husband and a daughter who are both rather picky so I have no problem with deceiving them by sneaking in a green or two). . . but I didn't realize until after I bought the book (Kindle version) that the premise is not about adding whole vegetables (or even finel
Oct 11, 2007 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bought this and I am sucked in. Now let's see if I get off my butt and make some purees. Love the recipes, and Jessica gives such great mealtime tips and just good general parenting advice that I hope to use sometime in the future...

I have a confession: I am 29 years old and hate to eat my vegetables. There, I said it. As a permanently picky eater, I am positively enthralled with this idea -- both for me, the adult, and for my future children. Love the fact that purees can be used for mixing
Oct 03, 2007 Carrie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
update: I tried all the recipes--they are awful!

Makes me so happy! Everyone that knows me knows that my kids are driving me crazy by not eating their vegetables..or anything that I prepare really. This book shows how to incorporate veggies into everything..breakfast to dessert using kids favorites foods. I love that they are healthy and nutritius using no transfats and whole grains (which is what I have in my pantry right now:) I have just pureed a bazillion vegetables so they are ready for the
The concept of adding veggie purees to recipies is a good one but certainly not an original one. Takes me back to the days of pureeing veggies when my older daughter was a baby.

In addition, the few recipies that I tried so far hide the veggies well but also don't taste that great. I went ahead and made some of the purees but am now sort of winging it rather that following recipies w much better results. What i like about this book is it is colorful and is spiral bound- which makes using it much
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Jessica Seinfeld (nee Nina Danielle Sklar) is the wife of comedian Jerry Seinfeld and author of a cookbook for preparing food for children. She graduated from the University of Vermont, and worked in public relations for Golden Books Entertainment, as well as for Tommy Hilfiger.

In 2007, Seinfeld published the cookbook Deceptively Delicious, which contains strategies and recipes for making healthy
More about Jessica Seinfeld...

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