Motivated by Marshmallows – Picky Eating Toddlers

Motivated by Marshmallows – Picky Eating Toddlers

I have always been kind of a picky eater.  It wasn’t until Jeff and I started dating that I opened my mind up about food.  Mostly because I was probably trying to impress him with my adventurous food tasting.  But years later, I’m so glad I became adventurous because now food is one our favorite hobbies 🙂

But when it came to our kids when they started eating human food, I was the mother that cooked them a separate meal because I was so afraid of them not eating anything.  Jeff was a fan of “they eat what we eat and if they don’t then they don’t.”  That made me nervous because they would not eat chili or fish or lasagna.

I don’t know about you but my twins LOVE LOVE LOVE Mac n Cheese!  I buy Annie’s organic Mac N Cheese but still Mac N Cheese is Mac N Cheese.  Everyone loves it but there has to be more in their diet!

**TIP** Target ALMOST ALWAYS has Annie’s on sale usually for $1.00 a box!  Whenever I see it on sale I buy 10-20 boxes.  Yes, they still it eat it a lot but I try to use it as a side dish instead of the main course!***

They would eat it every day for every meal if I allowed them too.  I have seen some homemade Mac N Cheese recipes that you can sneak veggies into, but I have never tried this but have it on my never-ending-list!

I HAVE made numerous versions of “sneaky” muffins.  Some with avocado, oats, apple sauce, greek yogurt, blueberries, or smashed bananas.  You name it – I’ve tried it. (Read more about sneaky muffins my twins love in this blog post from babyfoode.com)  These were such a hit with my kids and we enjoy them also.  Easy to tweak if you want to add something different etc.

But I just can’t feed my kids muffins for every meal……I needed more ideas!

Here are a list of recipes that I’ve saved and actually used to feed my picky toddler twins 🙂 I’ve made all of these recipes numerous times.

  1. Banana Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cups from Eat Yourself Skinny – My kids love them and so do we! I usually let the kids help me make them so they feel a sense of pride and seem to be inclined to eat what they “make”.
  2. Oatmeal Blueberry Apple Sauce Muffins from everyday family  – This recipe is another hit with my kids – I love any recipe that uses apple sauce or greek yogurt. I know it’s healthier for my kids and actually makes them really soft inside.  I would definitely try these out mommas!  ~Don’t forget the baking soda in this recipe like I have!
  3. Slow cooker Apple Granola Crumble from Vegan in the Freezer – This recipe is super easy and makes for a healthyish dessert that everyone loves.
  4. Quiches – I don’t have a recipe link to this one and I haven’t created a post for it yet, but the recipe comes from my Aunt JuJu!  All you need is a deep dish frozen pie crust, 6 eggs, a 1/4 cup of milk, seasonings and whatever veggies/meat you would like.  I often make asparagus and crab or ham and broccoli. (***TIP*** I steam the broccoli and asparagus before putting in the pie crust) Preheat oven to 400 degrees, chop up your ingredients place in the bottom of the empty pie crust, whisk the 6 eggs, milk, and seasonings and pour over the ingredients in the pie crust.  Cook on 400 degrees for 10 minutes then without taking the quiche out of the oven lower the temperature to 350 degrees and set the time for another 35-40 minutes depending on the oven.  Pull out of the oven and serve with a side salad or some other healthy side and voila! You have a dinner that all the family will love. Really you can use any kind of ingredients that you like, I’ve even thrown in random veggies because that’s all we had at home.  Hope you like!
  5. Peanut Butter Energy Bites from Chefsavvy – These are so simple to make (No bake and five ingredients)! My son requests these on the regular and loves to help me make them.  He would eat 3 at a time if I let him 🙂  Everyone in the family enjoys them and I always have all the ingredients on hand!

***TIP*** I have “forgotten” ingredients while baking usually because I’m doing too many things at once.  I have created a system for myself especially when baking so that I do not leave out ingredients.  Leaving baking soda out of some recipes will make hard muffins and that is a lot of time spent for hard muffins!  So what I do is pull out every ingredient and tool I need and place on my left.  When I am finished with an ingredient I move it to the right!   Voila – No ingredients left out because I’ll see them still sitting on the left.  Works for me!

After much searching for the perfect way to get veggies and other “good stuff” in their diet – I think I’ve found it here!  This plate is the coolest thing since sliced bread.  I never in my life would think I would be so excited about a toddler plate :)! But here I am writing a blog post so my other mommas can see if it works for their little ones 🙂

This plate has little “steps” that lead to a prize that is placed under this little box.  So I place a couple of bites of veggies, some part of our main meal, fruit or anything else that is nutritional.  Then under the little box – I place a marshmallow.  You can use anything that drives your toddler to eat.

I don’t know about you, but my children go bananas over marshmallows.  So my usual picky eaters now eat everything on their plates to get to that infamous marshmallow.  And I couldn’t be happier about it!  I try to put a new food in every time I use the tray to convince them that trying new things is the way to go 🙂  We have a long way to go but finding little items like this makes this momma happy and I love celebrating little wins!

 

Comment below if you have any tricks I can steal so my children eat their food!

 

Happy Toddlering People!

Jillian

~219momma~

 

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16 thoughts on “Motivated by Marshmallows – Picky Eating Toddlers

  1. So smart! a I’m dealing with a picky toddler right now, who was NOT picky the first year and a half or so of eating solid foods. Very frustrating! I’m definitely going to give some of these a try

  2. That plate is BRILLIANT!!! I am going to have to try that out on my 4 year old picky eater. My 1 year old will eat almost anything I put in front of her, the 4 year old, not so much. The one thing that I’ve found to work for him is counting. He likes it when we count out loud with him the bites he’s taking. Weird but it works. haha. The only other tip I have is smoothie-bowls. We make them basically every other day. Instead of making a smoothie and putting it into a cup, put it in a bowl and then you can add whole fruit on top…makes it easier to sneak greens and veggies into the smoothie itself. Good luck with you picky eaters 😄

    • Thanks for the tips Brenna! I’m going to try that out. Especially with my daughter who doesn’t like the veggies so much 🙂 Good luck with yours as well!

  3. Such awesome toddler food ideas! My three-year-old son has just entered a stage where he refuses to eat just about everything we put in front of him for dinner. Gonna give some of these yummy recipes a shot. Thanks!!

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