Healthy Alternatives to Unhealthy Food for Kids

Zov Cooking

As a mom to 3 kids I can tell you how difficult it is to always feed my kids something healthy. Each kid is in an after school sport, add boy scouts and homework on top of that, and I am constantly driving and trying to squeeze in a healthy meal wherever I can.

Personally we are a healthy family. We go to the gym several days a week and we limit sweets and carbs where we can but my husbands side of the family is morbidly obese so my kids are genetically  predisposed to it.

This past week I was excited to read that a local chef in my area has come up with a list of healthy alternatives to unhealthy convenience foods. Award-winning chef and best-selling cookbook author Zov Karamardian, owner of 5 OC restaurants that bear her name, has developed the list.  While she doesn’t serve these in her restaurants, her intention is to get kids making these items that she hopes will get them “back on track.”

“It’s disturbing to learn about the deplorable eating habits of America’s youth,” said Zov, who conducts cooking classes for young people and ventures into local schools to share her knowledge.   “I think if youngsters were more aware of what they’re putting in their bodies, they would re-evaluate their diets.  They just need the door opened for them so they can explore the exciting world of food and how simple experimentation can lead to better eating habits.”





* Toaster pastries

* Sugary cereals

* Frozen waffles

* Muffins



* Hot dogs

* Chicken nuggets

* Processed lunch meats

* Cafeteria lunches

* Pizza Pockets



* Packaged cheese or peanut butter


* Flavored chips

* Packaged desserts (i.e., Hostess and Little Debbie)

* Candy even in the form of “fruit roll-ups”





* Egg, tomatoes & cheese in a pita

* English muffin topped with a sliced hardboiled egg

* Cottage cheese & Mandarin oranges



* Pita stuffed with Avocado chicken salad (Shredded rotisserie chicken, avocado, mayo)

* Peanut Butter & Banana on wheat bread (Optional – drizzle with honey)

* Margherita pizza on English muffin

* Pasta Salad w/ carrots, celery, tomatoes, zucchini, cheese and chicken

* Cup of hummus with veggies



* Mini string cheese

* Hardboiled egg

* Edamame

* Nuts (unsalted)


Zov’s Bistro and Bakery serves some of Southern California’s finest Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine set in chic, yet comfortable environments. Founded in 1987, it has become one of the most recognized restaurants in Orange County, with an award-winning bakery, banquet facilities, full-service catering, and cooking classes.  She also owns two Zov’s Neighborhood Cafés & Bars in Newport Beach and Irvine and two concepts at John Wayne Airport. Visit

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