10 Tricks for Getting Kids to Eat Their Food
My daughter, Annie, like a lot of toddlers, can be very fussy with food. Luckily for me I’ve learned a number of tricks that have gone a long way toward getting her to be a more adventurous eater. Have a fussy eater, too? Give these these ten tips a try!
Take your fussy eater to the supermarket
Annie is much more likely to eat a food if she feels she played role in buying it. A good way to do this is by letting her put the item in the cart all by herself. FYI: this isn’t the best advice with eggs!
Let your fussy eater help “cook”
It adds a couple extra minutes to my prep time, but I find that if I give Annie some simple tasks, like stirring or placing food onto a cooking sheet, she’s much more likely to eat. Letting her help also has the added benefit of tiring her out for nap time!
My sister suggested this trick to me and it works great. Kids, being the little grubbers that they are, get way more excited about your food than their own, so let them eat off your plate!
Name your food and give it a fun story
Broccoli is a less enticing name than “Magic Trees,” especially when you tell your kids they are trees cut down near Smurf village!
Blend up veggies in yummy shake
Annie loves my blueberry breakfast smoothies and has no idea I always toss a veggie or two in the blender with the fun ingredients. It takes a little practice, but soon you’ll know how many veggies you can add without affecting the taste.
Make food fun
Cutting food into cool shapes, or putting a smiley face on a dish with a little sauce, often does the trick, too.
“No thank you” bites
A friend suggested this one and it has worked at our house. Annie can refuse a food, but only after taking three “no thank you” bites. Sometimes she even decides after those three bites that, lo and behold, she actually likes it!
This one is easy but effective. Put sprinkles on something and kids will eat it. I’ve heard some parents put sprinkles on veggie spaghetti and Annie, I mean, that parent’s kid, ate the whole thing!
Have someone cool eat it
Does your little one hero worship an older cousin or cool uncle? If so, show your child their hero likes the food and they likely will as well.
Don’t take no for an answer
No one likes conflict, but if you don’t push your kids to try new foods they never will. Make trying healthy and new food a regular part of meal time.
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