How many times have you tried a new recipe and your picky eater, says NO? Or how many of us have kids that only wants to eat the same thing everyday because it is familiar and they have grown accustomed to those favorite foods?
Let’s think about it, even as adults we have our go-to foods but for kids it is especially important to introduce them to a variety of foods to help provide an array of nutrients that are needed for their growing bodies. But how do we do that without them throwing a tantrum? Here are a few suggestions below:
1 – Eat Together
Meal time should be enjoyed by everyone and as adults or caregivers we should model the behavior for of kids. Also, eating together gives kids the opportunity to ask questions about new foods which may help them accept them more. Parents can also share their stories of when they were little the foods they didn’t like but have grown to love.
2 – Let Them Help
Like adults, children take pride in the things that they create themselves so allowing them to take part in the meal process can be very beneficial. Most kids will be proud of the items they make and enjoy consuming them as well.
3 – Make It Fun
Making food can be a fun and creative process. For instance, try making their favorite characters into foods such as pancakes and using fruits and vegetables to make race cars or some of their other favorite toys. Hopefully the fun looks will take their attention away from what they don’t like and put it on what they do like.
4 – Mix It Up
Mix the familiar foods with those that are unfamiliar ones. For instance, if they love blueberries, try mixing in strawberries. Or if they love pasta and you want them to try sweet peas, add those in with the pasta dish. Also, remember try not to introduce multiple new foods at one time as kids make reject them all even if they like one of them.
5 – Hide It
A great way to introduce a fruit is to mix it in a smoothie or even mix it in oatmeal. Also, covering a new vegetable in mashed potatoes or making chopping in hamburger meat to make a lean burger are also suggestions to help introduce new foods to your picky eater.
Even if you have tried some of these suggestions with no success, as kids age it is a good time to revisit some of these tips to see if kids may be more accepting of the new or unfamiliar foods.
For tips on finding healthy options while grocery shopping check out this article.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It’s not intended to replace medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.