Make Mealtime Fun and Healthy
During the infant phase, you imagined that toddler feeding would be a walk in the park filled with no more chaffed nipples and crying over spilled milk. Then, reality struck. You serve her favorite macaroni and cheese only to find out her palate has evolved; now, she only eats cheese pizza! And your attempts to incorporate a balanced meal prove futile as the greens are usually the only uneaten item on the plate.
Even though serving meals to your toddler and school-aged child can sometimes seem like a guessing game, I have learned that cooking together and presenting fun-looking meals can make your little one eat things they would not eat before. Check out the list below for some jazzed-up meal ideas that will have even the pickiest eater making a happy plate.
- Muffins: My 4-year-old and I have Muffin Monday every week. Cooking together excites him to eat what we have prepared together and develops his fine motor, math, and direction-following skills. Fruits and vegetables are easily disguised and can even enhance the flavor. Use a box brand or add vegetables, fruit, or chia seeds for a healthier option.
- Smoothie: Most kids love fruit, but vegetables can also be added without notice. Try adding chia seeds for an added health kick.
- Homemade Pizza Rolls: This easy recipe is a crowd favorite because it’s gooey and perfect for little hands. Add pureed peas to add color and nutrients.
- Ants on a Log: This 3 ingredient snack is easy to make and fun to eat!
- No Bake Protein Balls: This recipe has several variations and is always a crowd-pleaser.
- Rice Balls: A shift from plated rice to rice balls can be the difference you need to excite your little ones to eat their side dish. Use a rice ball mold to serve a side dish your child will love.
- Homemade Pizza: All kids love pizza, but they love making it even more! You can jazz it up by adding their favorite toppings.