I am the mom that serves things like powdered kelp and tahini to my babies. I make plain yogurt at home and add things like nutritional yeast and liquid DHA for babies to dishes. I steam and puree every vegetable I can think of and spoon it into those tiny little mouths. And I do believe I laid a good foundation for my kids being more adventurous eaters.
But with that said, I have to admit that my oldest, in particular, will still have days where she wants nothing more than to survive off food that is orange and brown (bread, cheese, peanut butter). So if you are ever feeling guilty that you “didn’t do enough” to get your kids to eat fruits and vegetables and other healthy foods, take it from the mom who went all out in that department: kids are just going to be picky, at least from time to time.
Vegetables for Kids
BUT….I do believe that if you are feeling defeated in the battle over vegetables for kids that I can offer some tips that will help!
First and foremost, if your child is still a baby, then there’s no time like the present to introduce as many different flavors as you possibly can. You’d be amazed at the things that you can puree or just chop up and put on their high chair trays. With my youngest, Layah, I have found that there are days when she just really wants to feed herself. That’s when I ditch the purees and break out things like rice and peas. She goes to town!
Also, if a baby rejects a food, put it away for a few hours and try again. Just yesterday Layah only ate 2 bites of the sweet potato porridge I made for her breakfast. I offered it to her again for dinner and she ate the entire thing! Just because they reject it once, that doesn’t mean that they won’t ever like it.
Set the Example
My nine month old is interested in trying ANYTHING that is on my plate. That motivates me to make sure I’ve got plenty of good food there. For example, yesterday I was having mac and cheese and I will admit, I didn’t have any vegetables on my plate at first. When I saw Layah making googly eyes at my food, I hopped over to my freezer and got some sugar snap peas. After a few minutes in the microwave, they were steamed and ready to eat. I got a good serving of veggies, and BOTH of my kids ate a good amount, too…all because it was on mommy’s plate!
Veggies ARE Snacks
My 3 year old asks for “a special treat” every day after her quiet time. I have moved out of my bad habit of giving her something sweet and started to offer her fruits and veggies. Carrot sticks with hummus, for example, have become one of her favorite “treats.” If you treat vegetables like they are something to look forward to, then they eventually will become so!
It is true that some vegetables have a more bitter taste, which can make them tough to swallow, literally. But I have learned that there are some vegetables that go nicely together and improve the overall flavor when combined. Earth’s Best has just launched a line of Organic Veggie Purees. These, my friends, are the new best friend of parents battling picky eaters.
Earth’s Best does an excellent job of finding the perfect match of vegetables to puree together so that the taste is fantastic and the nutritional benefit is huge. Darah begs to eat these any time she sees them in the pantry. She thinks they are “special treats.” And they are…they just happen to also be really good for her!
Win it!: One lucky Stuff Parents Need reader will win all the new Earth’s Best Veggie Pouches!
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I am a blog ambassador for Earth’s Best, and as such I have received complimentary products as a thank you for my time. All thoughts and opinions express here are strictly my own.