I was inspired to write about this blog post because my daughter is a fussy eater and does not like vegetables. It’s actually pretty funny because I used to feed her Gerber pureed vegetables which she LOVED when she was a baby and even a year old. She ate ANY vegetable I gave her – green beans, sweet potatoes, carrots, squash, peas and all the other good stuff!
Now, it’s a lot trickier to get her to eat vegetables, but there’s been a few ideas that have been helpful with my child. Here are the tips I have to get your kid to eat more vegetables:
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Getting Your Fussy Eater To Eat More Vegetables
Start with vegetables first and do it while your kid is hungry
I actually got this idea a few years ago when my daughter was still in preschool. One day, she skipped her usual mid-morning snack. When it was lunchtime, she ate her entire lunch and the vegetables they served (which she never did before). The teacher told me they served the vegetables first, as they were still waiting for the main lunches to be ready. When I asked my daughter about it, she said she ate the vegetables because she was hungry.
Reward your fussy eater with good eating habits
When your kid does try a vegetable, give a reward! You don’t need to make it a huge reward, like doing a trip to the toy store. It can be as simple as giving a sticker for taking a bite into that carrot. If you don’t have any stickers on hand, you could also give an extra 15 minutes of playtime at the park. This “bribe” actually works for my daughter. 😊
Cut the vegetables into tiny pieces and mix it with the main dish
Both my daughter and her father despise onions, but when I chop them up into tiny pieces and mix it in with my casserole, they have no idea I added onions. If it’s a bright and colorful vegetable where it may be hard to not see in a dish, you could also try pureeing the vegetable and mixing it with a sauce.
Use dipping sauce with the vegetables
Sometimes a kid needs that extra flavor to be motivated to eat vegetables. For a few ideas, you could use ranch, hummus, or a yogurt-based dressing. When I was a kid, the only way my parents could convince me to eat celery was if they let me dip it in peanut butter.
Set the example
You can preach to your child all day about the benefits of eating vegetables, but if she is seeing you eat a donut with your dinner, while you give her vegetables with her dinner, this definitely wouldn’t help the situation. Daddy says, “Honey, eat your vegetables.” Kid says, “But Daddy, Mommy’s eating a donut. I want what she has!”
What looks better to you? 😊