Healthy eating for picky eaters is super tricky. However, it’s not impossible if you have a few tricks up your sleeve! We put together our top tips to encourage healthy eating for picky eaters.
First, take our picky eater quiz to find out the level of pickiness you’re dealing with. Then, use these tips to build a healthy diet for picky eaters without the stress!
1. How do picky eaters eat healthy?
A healthy diet for picky eaters might look a little different than you think. However, it is possible to provide them with perfectly nutritious meals! Just choose the best variation of the foods they love, and try to present iffy foods in a fun, attractive way.
2. What should a picky eater eat?
Picky eaters should focus on balance, just like everyone else! Protein for picky eaters could be tricky, but kids only need a couple small servings a day. If you’re not sure where to start with fruits and veggies, offer superfoods for kids like berries or avocado.
Although a picky eater-friendly healthy meal plan for kids might not offer a ton of variety, there are some that are guaranteed to be crowd-pleasers and that you can sneak in some healthy ingredients. For example, our Mac N’ Cheese & Veggies Please features sneaky veggie-infused mac n’ cheese. It’s a win-win!
3. Family meals inspire healthy eating for picky eaters
Take the pressure off the table and focus on family time during meals. When you eat together, your child can model your eating behavior. Yes, that means you should be eating your veggies, too! Creating a positive parenting environment with encouragement and a good attitude around food is important, too.
4. Try hands-on experiences
Kids love to help! A hands-on experience is a fun and effective way to encourage healthy eating for picky eaters. Ask your kids to help with meal planning, grocery shopping, and easy tasks in the kitchen. The extra exposure can sway even the pickiest eater to try a new food. This picky eater tip is a win for parents, too!
5. A picky eater should eat foods that weren’t a hit before; so keep offering them
You know what they say: Never give up! Repeated exposure is a building block for a healthy diet for picky eaters. Those little taste buds need time to adjust to new foods, so just keep offering foods your kids have refused in the past. Seeing those healthy foods over and over eventually leads to touching them, and then to tasting them. Also, be sure to experiment with new recipes using those foods.
6. Serve something familiar with new foods
Picky eaters may fear new foods for a variety of reasons, such as texture and unfamiliarity. Therefore, they could totally shut down if they see a plate full of new foods. So how does a picky eater eat healthy when they’re scared of the food in front of them? Try to serve at least one favorite food alongside a new or commonly-rejected food. That way, you can gently expand their menu and help them feel less overwhelmed.
7. Buildable meals make healthy eating fun for picky eaters
Did you know letting your kids play with their food is actually a good thing? Yep! A buildable meal doubles as an activity that gives your child more control over their meal. Plus, it’s fun! Kids love building the Perfect Pizza Bagel, or similar meals like tacos. When your kids are playing chef, curiosity about some foods might take over.
Looking for an easy way to encourage healthy eating for picky eaters? Yumble delivers fresh, delicious, fully prepared kids’ meals right to your doorstep that even the pickiest eaters will love. Simply pick the plan that works best for your family, choose your weekly meals, and Yumble will take care of the rest!