Many parents would scoff at the idea of feeding a child a completely vegan diet. Besides the fact that they can’t imagine themselves doing it, they think that vegan diets can’t provide children with the key nutrients they need for growth and development.

Even the scientific community would have backed up these claims a while back. However, recent studies show that kids can thrive on a well-planned vegan diet. In fact, due to the increased dietary diversity, vegan children are often getting more vitamins, minerals, and fiber while “missing out” on the pleasures and dangers associated with saturated fats. 

In the long run, vegan children may be on the path to a healthier adulthood, free from common baddies like heart disease and type-two diabetes. 

So, if you want to teach your children about a plant-based diet, here are a few tips to get you started.

Make Sure They Have a Varied Diet

If you’ve decided to embrace the vegan lifestyle, you must know by now that diversity is the name of the game. However, dietary diversity may be quite challenging when it comes to feeding children, whether they’re following a vegan diet or not.

The good news is that you have a wide range of options to choose from, and you’re free to use your imagination when it comes to combinations and culinary creations. 

To give you a bit of a head start, here is a list of the most important vitamins and nutrients a child needs growing up and various vegan sources (from Mother Nature or as supplements).


Calcium is the building block for strong bones and teeth, crucial during those rapid growth spurts in childhood. 

To make sure your vegan kiddo isn’t missing out, turn to fortified breakfast cereals, almond products like ground almonds or nut butter (since whole nuts are a no-go for the under-fives), and dried fruits like apricots, figs, and prunes. 

Iron and Zinc

Iron is key for making red blood cells, which transport oxygen around the body, while zinc boosts the immune system. Therefore, finding plant-based sources of these minerals is crucial for kids on a vegan diet. 

Start with legumes, spinach, green leafy veggies, asparagus, whole grains, beans, lentils, oatmeal, seeds, and others. Also, make sure to incorporate foods high in vitamin C (think cabbage, peppers, broccoli, brussels sprouts, kiwi fruit, or citrus fruits) alongside to boost iron and zinc absorption. 

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 keeps nerve and blood cells healthy, but despite being vital for growing kids, it’s tricky to find in plant-based ingredients since it’s mostly found in animal products. Look for fortified breakfast cereals and plant milks, but also consider proper supplementation. 

Omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3s are essential for brain development and maintaining heart health (among others), so they must be a part of your kid’s diet. Options include rapeseed, flaxseed, soya oils, and ground chia seeds. Aside from being a protein juggernaut, Tofu is also a friend here.

However, not many kids go crazy over flax seeds and tofu, so you may have a tough time convincing them to include them in their diet. Luckily, nowadays, you have easy access to leading vegan Omega-3 supplements that will help fill the gap.


Iodine plays a critical role in brain development in children. However, with fish off the table for vegans, seaweed snacks or fortified soya toddler milk can come to the rescue as alternative sources. Still, this is yet another situation where you must consider supplementation.

Vitamin D

Essential for absorbing calcium and promoting bone growth, vitamin D is a must-have for kiddos. However, this is another essential building block we can’t get enough from food alone, especially on a vegan diet. 

Plant-based milks fortified with vitamin D are an option, but given how vital this nutrient is, supplementing might be worth considering to make sure your child isn’t coming up short.


Growing bodies need protein for just about everything – building muscles, repairing cells – you name it. For plant-powered families, chickpeas, beans, lentils, soya products (like tofu and soya mince), hummus, seeds, and nuts (in safe forms like smooth butter or ground) are all fantastic Vegan sources of protein to keep those little bodies thriving and strong.

Key Takeaway

A flourishing and nutrient-rich vegan diet is all about variety. However, sometimes, this variety also includes supplements since a plant-based diet cannot provide a growing child with all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients they need.

At the end of the day, it’s all about balance. A full and diverse plant-based diet has been shown to have amazing benefits at any age. So don’t be afraid to show your kids a better way of living, where they are in harmony with nature and their own bodies.