Feeding toddlers ranks up there among the most frustrating feats you’d have to do as a parent. Those little ones can be picky, unreasonable, fickle…
These boss babies are worse than the most ridiculously infuriating employer you’ve ever had. They spit, scream, throw things, and send you picking up after them to deal with the grossest messes. They get away with it because they’re cute and you love them.
The good news is that time and training will take care of that behavior. In the interim, you just have to deal because, naturally, you can’t quit.
Suffice it to say that for a time in their lives, you’d be terrorized by meal planning as you obsess over whether they’d eat something or not, whether they’d gotten enough to eat or not, and whether they’d sufficiently consumed the nutrients they require or not.
You need to keep things simple and make it less of a struggle. Why make things harder for yourself when it’s already difficult as it is?
There are healthy foods out there that toddlers love to eat. It makes sense to stock your pantry and fridge with them and just serve them over and over again.
This, of course, doesn’t mean that you won’t need to introduce new dishes and push your toddlers to explore new foods, but you can dispense with one of your many worries by ensuring that your children will always have something healthy to eat.
What are these healthy, toddler-approved foods?
Most people love fruits. Sweet and refreshing, they’re usually preferred over vegetables, and not just by toddlers. They’re very healthy. If you despair that your toddlers are adamant about refusing veggies, you can rest assured that they’re sourcing many required vitamins and minerals from fruits.
For some reason, toddlers cotton to yogurt. Often, they prefer it to whole milk.
Yogurt has the calcium and other nutrients present in other dairy products, but it goes a step above all the rest because it also has probiotics, which are essential to gut health. If you didn’t know, the gut has a very strong influence on physical health.
Breakfast cereals are chock-full of nutrients. Not only are they nutritious in themselves, but they are also often fortified with even more nutrients.
There are two things to note, however, when choosing cereals for your children. Are they whole grain and are they sweetened with sugar? Obviously, you should go for the healthier option of whole grain and sugarless or low sugar.
This is a good source of carbohydrates and energy. Again, you should go for whole grain. For added nutrients, see if you can find those that have been laced with vegetables such as spinach, carrots, moringa, etc.
You can make a sauce for your pasta. There’s no guarantee that your picky eater would give it the time of day, but it would be easy enough to just toss their serving in some olive oil infused with garlic, salt, and pepper for flavor.
Go for easy to spear noodles such as fusilli, penne, macaroni, farfalle, etc. Spaghetti and fettucine would be too unwieldy and messy.
Eggs are often a lifesaver since they’re ever-present in the fridge. A popular stand-by for parents who have run out of ideas or supplies, they can be served in the fashion that best appeals to your kids – sunny-side up, poached, scrambled, boiled, etc .
You might be leery of the cholesterol, but nutrition experts say that this is usually not a concern with kids. Eggs are also rich in all the best nutrients for children, such as vitamin D, vitamin B-12, magnesium, zinc, iron, calcium, potassium, and many more.
Feeding toddlers is a rite of passage for all parents. Just expect to go a little batty as you tear your hair out, strategizing over what to serve and how to feed them. The task will decidedly be easier if you have these toddler-friendly healthy foods.
Yes, toddler mealtime can be a battle, but, fortunately, it’s one that you can win. Of course, there might be some collateral damage on your sanity, but, remember, this too shall pass.