Michelle Obama Challenges Children to Cook Fruit and Vegetables on MasterChef Junior

Michelle Obama talks with MasterChef Junior winner Justise / Youtube


During her eight years as first lady, nutrition was one of Michelle Obama's main focuses. Michelle lobbied for regulations to public school lunches, which the federal government approved. The regulations included stricter standards on the amount of salt in food, and using whole wheat grains.

After the new standards were in place, the School Nutrition Association, a nonprofit professional organization that represents over 57,000 members that work in school food service, said students were refusing to eat the healthy lunches. This led to higher costs and food waste. Schools could choose to get rid of the program, but then they would be subject to federal subsidy cuts.

Despite the rejection of her school lunch standards, Mrs. Obama has apparently not been deterred in her efforts to get kids to eat healthier.

The former First Lady made a guest appearance on MasterChef Junior Thursday night, challenging young and budding chefs to cook healthy meals.

Mrs. Obama was the special guest on the mystery challenge segment that was filmed last year while her husband was still in office, Daily Mail reported . The winner of the challenge would win a trip to the White House annual kids' state dinner in July of 2016.

The young contestants lifted the lids of their mystery boxes to reveal fruits and vegetables inspired by the White House kitchen garden.

Nine-year-old Donovan, was not happy with Mrs. Obama's mystery box challenge.

"Michelle Obama wants me to cook vegetables. Not happening. I don’t like vegetables, they’re evil," he said.

Contestants had one hour to creatively use the ingredients in the mystery box to prepare a dish.

11-year-old Justise won the competition by preparing a pan-seared shrimp with sautéed bell peppers, carrots, eggplant, and quinoa.

A very excited Justise sat down with Michelle for a one-on-one conversation.

"And the last thing I would tell you to do is your voice and help others because a lot of kids don't know how important it is to eat healthy. So you guys have to be our ambassadors and introduce them to new vegetables and fruits," Michelle said.

According to the Washington Examiner, school cafeteria workers are hoping to have the lunch regulation standards overturned with President Donald Trump in office.

Madeleine Weast

Madeleine Weast   Email Madeleine | Full Bio | RSS
Madeleine Weast is Assistant Social Media Editor for the Washington Free Beacon. She graduated from the University of Kansas in 2014. Prior to joining the Beacon, she was a Communications Fellow at The Charles Koch Institute. Madeleine is from Prairie Village, Kansas and lives in Washington, D.C. Her Twitter handle is @MadeleineWeast.

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