9 Tips to Earn the Trust of Your Picky Eater
Health and Nutrition Research shows that children are more likely to eat colorful foods presented with a design or pattern, implying variety can influence healthy eating and good nutrition.
1. Start by letting kids help pick out colorful fruit during grocery shopping trips. Encourage them to fill your basket with a rainbow of colors by selecting a wide variety.
2. Empower kids to choose what they want to eat from a small set of healthy choices. Let them decide if they want to top their cereal, yogurt or oatmeal with sliced bananas, peaches or berries. Give them the opportunity to use their imagination and experiment with creative combinations.
3. Cut fruit into fun shapes to entice little ones with small cookie cutters or butter knives, if age-appropriate. Watermelon, mango and strawberries are good for making small shapes like hearts, stars and flowers.
4. Transform traditional pancakes or waffles into creative animals. Bananas, blueberries, strawberries and almonds combine to create this pancake owl. Use banana slices and blueberries for the owl’s eyes, strawberries for the ears, eyes and feathers, almonds for the feet and a banana sliced lengthwise in half for a tree branch. Try fish, butterflies and caterpillars too. Make sure to let little hands help decorate.
5. Personalize the breakfast bowl or piece of toast with the first initial of your child’s name in fruit. Top a bowl of yogurt or oatmeal with the letter created with blackberries. On a pancake, make the letter with blueberries. Or, use halved grapes to make the letter on a piece of peanut butter toast.
6. Combine fruit with Belgian waffles to play games like tic-tac-toe. The grid on the waffle can be the tic-tac-toe board and kids use blueberries as the X’s and raspberries as the O’s to fill in the squares.
7. Create tasty fruit dippers by putting out a big bowl of melon balls, grapes, strawberries and banana slices. Have children thread the fruit onto wooden skewers and dip in a bowl of vanilla yogurt or creamy almond butter. Or, let them use toothpicks to pick up a piece of fruit for dipping.
8. Make breakfast a parfait party with separate bowls of yogurt, fruit and granola or cereal on the table. Give each kid a clear cup or glass and let them spoon in what they want creating a layered fruit-filled parfait. Experiment with different fruits and textures.
9. Enlist the kids to pack your blender full of colorful fresh and frozen fruits and yogurt, then press puree and watch it turn into a delicious breakfast smoothie. Have fun guessing what color the final product will be.