Foods for Kids Birthday Parties

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Kids' birthday parties are all about fun. Plan a menu your little guests will enjoy as much as the rest of the party. Serve foods that are cleverly presented and fun to eat. Choose a combination of basic kids' favorites, healthy options, beverages, desserts and of course, birthday cake.

  1. Presentation

    • Serve the food in creative ways. Kids who like macaroni and cheese will love it even more when it's served from a fun container. Fill a large plastic pail with the pasta dish, and serve it with accompanying shovels. Put fruit punch in a champagne fountain, and pour it into plastic champagne flutes. Make straws out of licorice sticks.

      Serve food on skewers with dipping sauces. Kids enjoy dipping their own food and eating it from a stick. Fruit and cheese kabobs, chicken nuggets and even ravioli can be served on skewers. Set up a dipping station with salad dressings and sauces. Combine this with the fruit punch fountain to create a kid-friendly cocktail party.

      Turn ordinary sandwiches into fun figures using cookie cutters. Animal shapes are a popular choice. Decorate the animals with blueberry eyes, raisin nostrils and cheese string whiskers.

      Pack individual "happy meals." Purchase cardboard lunch boxes from the party supply store or make your own decorative paper lunch bags. Fill them with sandwiches, mini burgers or chicken nuggets, a snack item and a small toy or trinket.

    Healthy Options

    • Create fun vegetable snacks. Fill celery hearts with cream cheese and top with goldfish crackers. Call these treats "fish in a stream," and they become more appealing. Replace the goldfish crackers with raisins to create "ants on a log."

      Add sliced fruit to gelatin for a treat that combines a fun, colorful dessert with the nutrition of fruit. Use varying fruits and gelatin colors that create a visual effect, such as a rainbow stripes.

      Make milkshakes with low fat milk, frozen strawberries and bananas. Don't defrost the fruit before blending, as the frozen texture will give the shake a frosty, cold consistency similar to one made with ice cream. Set up a parfait bar in the tradition of making your own ice cream sundae, replacing ice cream with healthier frozen yogurt, and candy toppings with fresh fruit, cereal and granola.

      Get kids to drink water by offering fresh fruit and vegetable garnishes. Slice strawberries, oranges, melon and cucumbers, and allow party guests to choose their own garnishes.

    The Cake

    • The cake is always the star of the birthday party menu. Order a theme cake from a bakery that specializes in birthday cakes, or search the Internet for homemade theme cake instructions.

      Cupcakes or individual miniature cakes are popular options. Supply toppings such as sprinkles, crushed cookies, colored candies, fresh fruit and nuts, and let the children decorate their own desserts. Hold a contest and award prizes in several categories. Make sure there are enough categories to insure every participant wins a prize.

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