Convincing anyone to eat something they dislike is no easy feat. Convincing a toddler to do it is nearly impossible. Children may pitch a fit or “accidentally” drop vegetables right off their plates when they do not want them. We know vegetables are full of all the vitamins and minerals we need as humans to grow and develop. So how, then, do you convince a toddler that the icky green thing is what is good for them?
First, perhaps consider buying the best baby feeding set of 2018, so it’s not so easy for your little one to just pick up the plate and throw it to the ground. But when all else fails, you may
just have to sneak it into their food. If you can mask the taste and appearance, they may even like vegetables and be none the wiser. Here are some tricks and tips for getting your toddler to eat their vegetables and still be happy.
- Puree Them
Surprisingly, you can easily mask vegetables in almost anything you make. You can easily hide more bland vegetables as a puree within other foods, like spaghetti sauce, casseroles, or even pancakes! You simply blend them up until they are smooth, and add them into the food of choice. With the right tastes and choices, your toddler will be none the wiser that vegetables are even in their food, and they will be excited for pancakes or spaghetti instead.
- Dunk Them
This is not necessarily hiding the vegetables, per se, but allowing children to experience new tastes might help them develop an affinity for vegetables – with the right accompaniment. Often, some kind of cheese dip or hummus is really appealing to children, and they may find that abhorrent broccoli to be pretty amazing with the right dip. Plus, dipping the food is fun for them, and you can help them make an experience out of it by letting them experiment with different veggies and dips.
- Flavor It
Use some butter and salt. Add a little bit of melted cheese. Cook it with garlic or bacon. There is nothing wrong with adding a little extra flavor to the vegetables, and it will make the taste that much more enjoyable. Mix it up with the flavors, too – not everything needs butter, maybe sometimes try some cheese. See what your toddler likes, and experiment with the foods. Include your child on the process, too. If you make food fun, they may begin to see the appeal even more!
- Make a Smoothie
Rather than pureeing the vegetable and hiding it in something else, consider blending it up with some fruit and ice and making a smoothie! Smoothies are sweet and healthy, and when you add in the vegetables, it is yet another method of ensuring your child is getting the vitamins they need, but in a form that they enjoy.
Furthermore, if smoothies are not your style, try popsicles. In the same manner, blend the fruits and vegetables together, and then freeze them to create delicious popsicles. Kids cannot resist those frozen treats.
- Put It in Dessert
Make some sweet zucchini bread or brownies, or throw something in the cake mix. Carrot cake is always a good choice. Whatever you decide, putting veggies into sweeter foods is a sure fire way to sneak some vegetables into your child’s diet. They will be incredibly excited for sweets or a new desert to try, and you will be content knowing that they are happily enjoying some vegetables without a fight.
Bonus: Give Them a Choice or Control
If you feel odd about hiding vegetables in your kid’s food, try giving them options or a semblance of control. Research shows that when kids have a choice in what they eat, they will often surprise you. Keep it simple – maybe offer them two types of veggies and watch them pick both, or let them pick out the vegetables at the market. Let them help you prepare and cook the veggies. They feel like they have a say and that they helped create it, and they are more likely to eat it and enjoy it!