The Recipe for Dealing with Picky Eaters

If you’re a mom, chances are that you have at least one picky eater in the house. Perhaps you have the child that thinks anything with flavor is “too spicy” or refuses to eat anything that doesn’t come in the form of a nugget. If you’re struggling with picky eaters, here are some tips that have helped Safe Sitter® moms keep their sanity:

  1. Make two meals out of one. Before you season that meat or add that sauce, set some of the plain, unseasoned stuff aside. The picky eaters will find the plain version much more palatable.
  2. Let them eat the side dishes. So what if they won’t eat the lasagna or the meatloaf? Let them eat the mashed potatoes and the green beans. It’s okay to make your favorite dishes that the picky eaters detest; just try to add in a side dish that you know they like. The side dishes are often healthier than the main dish, anyway.
  3. Add some fruit. Fruits are sweet enough to be a favorite with most kids, but they also pack a nutritional punch, so slice up some fresh apple, cantaloupe, peaches, or strawberries for a side dish instead of the usual green beans or broccoli.
  4. Let it go. Some nights it’s just not worth it, especially after you cooked their favorite – chicken ala whatever – only to find out that they’re now avowed vegetarians. Let them make their own dinner, as long as it’s nutritious. Even young children can pick out a cheese stick, an apple, and some baby carrots out of the refrigerator.

So go ahead – make spicy pasta with peas and chicken. Just remember to set some noodles aside and add some butter or some plain spaghetti sauce for the picky eaters. Good luck with your picky eaters, and don’t worry – someday they’ll beg for your tuna noodle casserole. Until then, give them tuna on crackers, or maybe tuna with crackers… separately.

Share your own tips for dealing with picky eaters on the Safe Sitter® Facebook page.

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