Clever ideas to help you tweak your little one’s meals and snacks in such a toddler-friendly fashion, he won’t even notice! Brought to you by Organix.
Eat as a family
Eating together lets you have a positive influence at mealtimes and encourages young children to be less fussy.
Give them (a little) control
Let your toddler help prepare the meal, choose which veg to have, and decorate his pizza with sliced peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes or pineapple. When they feel involved, they’re more likely to try new foods.
Hide the veg
Add finely chopped or puréed veg to pasta sauce; mash potato with sweet potato, swede, parsnip or butternut squash; add finely grated courgettes or carrots to lasagne or spaghetti Bolognese.
Sticks of carrot, cucumber and pepper, baby sweetcorn and cherry tomatoes make tasty snacks. Serve with houmous, salsa or a cheesy dip and children who refuse most vegetables will often eat these. And keep fruit on display in a bowl – then your toddler is more likely to ask for some.
Keep healthy snacks to hand
It’s always useful to pack a few wholesome nibbles when you’re heading out and about or setting off on a journey. The Organix Goodies range comes with a ‘No Junk Promise’. Choose from oaty bars, savoury corn and rice snacks, chunky fruit bars, biscuits and crackers – all ideal for little explorers on the go.
Make veg attractive
Have fun – arrange carrots in a ring around the plate; stand broccoli ‘trees’ on a base of mashed potato; make a cucumber snake.
Eat dessert first
If your toddler is too hungry to wait for supper, give him dessert first – apple slices, grapes, melon – to stave off his hunger pangs and help reach his five-a-day target.
Make traditional fruity puds
As well as giving your toddler plenty of fruit, such as grapes and satsuma segments, make old-fashioned puds by simply stewing apples or pears, baking apples, or making a fruit crumble or pie and serving with custard.
Don’t ban foods
Allow all foods, but explain that some should only be eaten occasionally, as a treat. Banning a food increases its desirability, making it more likely your child will try to eat it in secret!
Praise your tot for trying new foods. If something is rejected, try again a week or so later. Children will grow to like healthy foods if they’re offered them often enough.