Toddlers refuse and like to fight when you make them eat vegetables. Other foods seem more delicious to them. Unfortunately, these foods are rarely healthy, and parents feel pressure to break them out of unhealthy habits at this early stage.
Therefore, parents must get creative at mealtimes. The question is, how?
This blog will analyze six tips to avoid fighting, bargaining, and begging at mealtimes. Discover a variety of ways to make eating vegetables more appealing to kids.
1. Remove the Competition
If your toddlers don’t have many options but are hungry, they will most likely eat what is in front of them. If you choose to have your kids eat before dinner, prepare and put the vegetables on their plates. This way, they do not have other foods like carbs to compete for their attention.
When given a choice, most kids would not choose vegetables over pasta or pizza. If you remove the options, then it makes mealtimes easier because they have already eaten their vegetables.
2. Make Food Art
This is a great way to get creative at mealtimes. Even something small like arranging carrots into a smiley face or making ants on a log can help. Taking time to arrange vegetables into fun shapes and even fun stories can make eating less about negotiating and more enjoyable.
3. Make Popsicles
If your child loves dessert in any form, then this may be the tip for you. Invest in a juicer and then juice vegetables that do not have a very strong taste. Then, you can buy an inexpensive ice pop maker and create a frozen treat for your little one. You can even mix juices or add fruit juices to the mix to make it taste better. They don’t have to know it’s healthy.
4. Add Dip
You can make mealtime interactive by giving toddlers something to dip their vegetables in. Whether this is hummus, peanut butter, ranch dip, or guacamole, your kids will love the activity and the extra deliciousness that dip provides. Watch out. This may get messy.
5. Add Them to Other Meals
Vegetables come in many forms. This makes it easier to combine them with other foods that kids would want to eat. Examples include zucchini noodles, cauliflower pizza crust, vegetable purees combined with sauces or placed inside lasagna. The possibilities are endless.
This way, they don’t have to know that they are eating healthy, but they also learn that vegetables can be just as delicious as their other favourite foods.
6.Try Different Recipes
If you have the time, trying several different recipes, temperatures and forms with vegetables can help figure out how your toddler will eat vegetables. Don’t get discouraged if the first or fourth try doesn’t yield results. Toddlers are naturally picky and may even like something that they found disgusting two days before.
Discovering your child’s likes and dislikes is one of the most rewarding and frustrating processes in parenthood. It is important to realize that everyone goes through these things. Just making sure your child is fed is the most important thing.
Written by: Gabrielle Goldson
Check our other blog: 3 Common Toddler Sleep Problems (and How to Fix Them!)