Meal ideas for picky eaters

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Find inspiration for healthy family meals, that appeal to fussy eaters as well. You can ask for advice and share tips on helping kids to enjoy a variety of foods. Our goal is to have healthier, happier little diners.
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heather

heather

I wanted to try letting the kids decide what food to eat for dinners.

A friend mentioned it was supposed to help and my daughter has been asking to choose her own food anyway. But everyone gets a night to choose something and the others have to eat it.

Has anyone tried something like this? Does it work or does it end in arguments and mayhem?

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heather

heather

marialev
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marialev

I let them choose sometimes and it does help when they choose their own meals. They're not too keen when it's my turn though and they have to eat my choice for dinner!

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Keri
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Keri

For us, it works, but it takes time (and yes, some arguments and mayhem) before they begin to accept that that's the way it's going to be😁. Mine favour different foods, but mostly they just don't like to see the other one "winning" over them in any way. In our house it's more about sibling rivalry than food.

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Carselea

Carselea

I want to get my kids more excited about food. Has anyone tried those meal box deliveries that you order to cook your own meals? Are they good value? Do they help your kids be excited about cooking?

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Carselea

Carselea

Keri
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Keri

I have never subscribed to a service, but a friend of mine gave me a lot of recipes that she had saved from her Gousto deliveries. The recipes are really good!! Very innovative family meals. I cook them all the time at home.

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Sophia

Sophia

May it be a great year!

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Sophia

Sophia

Nicola

Nicola

Is your toddler a fussy eater? If so - what do you do? I find myself getting anxious when my toddler refuses foods and don't know what to do. I'm sure I'm making things worse but am a bit stuck. Any tips?

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Nicola

Nicola

Laura
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Laura

I can relate! I'd say avoid making them finish everything on their plate. It leads to overeating later in life.Allow them to self regulate, but offer a variety of healthy foods at each meal time.


Another tip is to make them a part of the process...grow a few veggies in little pots. They can watch them grow, water them and then help create a dish out of them. Or, play a family game where everyone rates each food from 1-10.


Don't allow your kids to snack all day on crackers or fruit. Keep meal times consistent, and they'll naturally be hungry enough to eat a meal.


Good luck! It is stressful, but it passed in time.

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marialev
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marialev

Mine only wants to eat lunch. Breakfast and dinner are battles! I've always found that cutting down on, or having no snacks between meals has helped.


Otherwise I resort to either pretending the fork is an aeroplane like everyone! Or I pretend I'm going to eat her peas if she doesn't eat them first.

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AnaGarcia

AnaGarcia

My Mum cooks the same menu every 24 December for dinner , I think for me is the most important night of Christmas as is the night that I do remember the hole family together, the aroma of that menu bring me home every 24!!! so now I am a mother I do keep the tradition and looks like it works !!! My daughter ask me this week if Mum is cooking that food again this Christmas!!! Nice to feel home when you can not be home those special days ..

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AnaGarcia

AnaGarcia

marialev
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marialev

That's so nice! My mum used to celebrate Christmas day on Christmas Eve as it was their tradition so they would make almost like a Christmas lunch.


What does she make for 24th December?

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Laura
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Laura

That's a lovely Christmas Eve tradition.

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Keri

Keri

Does anyone have family food traditions or rituals that have helped your kids appreciate that food is about more than just eating?

We've been choosing one country a week (the kids choose) and I cook a dinner from that country. When they were smaller we had a map that we put pins in.

My kids are older now, but they still love this. I've seen great side benefits too...my daughter discovered a love of Korean food and she's been practicing speaking Korean for over a year. My son loves Mexican and has planned his dream holiday on his iPad already. I think it really opens up the world a bit more...

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Keri

Keri

emily_l
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emily_l

What a great tradition to have! We were just talking about getting our kids to try foods from different countries. The only thing stopping us is my son who's a bit picky with foods he doesn't know so I've been too scared that he'll eat nothing at all!


We make Tacos once a week now and they love it - not very adventurous but it's a start!


Where do you get recipes for each country's food from? Do you have a book or look online?

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Keri
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Keri

Mostly just off the internet. It's really fun and encourages more adventurous eating. I try to choose fairly simple recipes with not so exotic ingredients.

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Laura

Laura

Is anyone preparing for Thanksgiving? I'm American and I've hosted Thanksgiving every one of the 20 years I've been here. It's one of my favourite family holidays...about sharing food and talking and spending time together and much less commercial than Xmas.

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Laura

Laura

emily_l
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emily_l

I celebrated it one year with my aunt as she's American too and it was so nice, so much more about family and appreciating them. Are you doing a Thanksgiving dinner this year?

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Keri
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Keri

We're off to an American friend's house in London. I will miss cooking the big feast, but in a way it's great to be a guest!

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Keri

Keri

I've been experimenting with labneh, which is basically just strained Greek yogurt that gets really thick, like cheese. If you strain your yogurt through cheesecloth (or even just a mesh strainer) for about 12 hours it gets really thick and creamy. Roll it into balls and roll the balls in spices. I've tried adding things to the yogurt for different kinds of labneh balls...so far I've added preserved lemons and mint, pomegranante and oregano and garlic and tarragon. The taste and consistency is a bit like cream cheese. It's a great way to get yogurt into the diet!

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Keri

Keri

Sophia N
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Sophia N

I'd never heard of that thanks! They sound delicious

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Keri
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Keri

They are, and so easy to make. You spread them on bread like cream cheese. I'm going to make these as Christmas party food.

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AnaGarcia

AnaGarcia

Many years working with children did teach me to be a magician hiding vegetables, fruit , even protein when cook , one of the easiest is to make a bolognese with all vegetables I got around the house , make chicken soup with noodles where i do blend some chicken for the fussy eaters ?, yogurt and fruit lollies too . Do you have secret recipe for fussy eaters ? .

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AnaGarcia

AnaGarcia

Sophia N
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Sophia N

Thanks for the great ideas. We do a hidden veggie tomato sauce with everything blended in. I've never tried chicken noodle soup with them before, I might give that a go. Does it have grated veggies inside it?

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AnaGarcia
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AnaGarcia

i do blend some veg and bit of chicken with the stock , then add noodle on the stock . If they are not so fussy I do add some small pieces of chicken and the vegetables ( chopped very very small ) .

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emily_l

emily_l

What's your child's favourite family meal? Ours could eat chicken nuggets and pizza every night for the rest of all time 🙈 I was wondering if other kids were more adventurous!

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emily_l

emily_l

Carselea
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Carselea

Pizza or sausages, beans and chips! The old favourites. Having said that they do love my 'Sticky chicken' (which is a chicken dish with a honey sticky glaze). I'm not sure they'd add it to their list of favourite foods but it always goes down a treat.

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AnaGarcia
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AnaGarcia

My daughter loves sushi , I think at the moment stop to be obsessed with it so we don’t have it as often , she loves my tuna pastry and chicken noodles , she never like pizza now she is at the school, she try hard to like pizza as her friends loves it 🙂 . She likes a lot healthy food but she loves chocolate so she get a bit here and there as a treat , she used to eat dark chocolate but not at the moment , she says that caramel sea salt is her favourite !!! Have to say mine too 😂 ...

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Keri
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Keri

My daughter loves sushi and my son likes a traditional burger:)

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