Picky Eater Guide
1. The Disguise
Children are often influenced by how a new food looks. Use a cookie cutter or knife to cut vegetables into child-friendly shapes!
2. Kitchen Help
Ask your children to help you prepare a meal, and expose them to new foods. If you are excited about cooking this new food, the children will be too, and will be more likely to try something that they helped to make.
3. Hidden Away
Hide veggies in food by cutting them small and putting them in a sauce or soup. Start leaving them larger the more you make the recipe. Towards the end of the meal, talk about the dish with the children and ask what their favorite part is, and tell them the ingredients. If children already know they like something, they will be more likely to try that food in new ways in the future.
4. The Number of Bites Rule
Expose kids to a new food by making it often. Place a small number of bites on their plate the first night, and ask that they finish just that little amount. As you make this food more, gradually put more bites on the plate. The more kids eat a food, the more they will like it.
5. Mixing New and Old
Make your child’s favorite meal with a new, healthy component. Children are more likely to try something new if it is mixed with their favorite foods.
6. The Reward System
For especially picky eaters! Create a sticker chart to motivate them to try new foods and allow them to choose a reward when the boxes are complete. Make a small amount of a new food for your child and put it on their plate. Reward your child for completing different steps in trying the new food. Reward them for putting the food on their fork and bringing it close to their lips. Increase the task by having them touch the food to their lips, then tongue, then putting the food in their mouth for increasing number of seconds, and finally chewing and swallowing the food.