This post is sponsored by Happy Family at Target but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
It must be a scientific fact – the moment my kids enter toddlerhood, they get picky. Suddenly, all the foods they used to love are now foods they won’t touch. They want endless amounts of snacks and beg for them at all hours of the day.
It’s not just my kids, right?
Seriously, it is HARD to get kids to eat well during the toddler years. I really think being a mom to toddlers is so much harder than infants, and the food battles are just one reason why.
Thankfully, this isn’t my first go-round with picky eating, and I have a few tricks up my sleeve. Do they all work all the time? No, of course not – but they do work most of the time!
- Serve new foods with tried and true favorites. This is one of my favorite tricks. Any time you’re serving something new, or even something you know it’s a favorite, serve it with something that is. For example – both my kids love black beans. Every taco night, I ass black beans to the menu along with their taco meat. Sometimes they’ll eat the taco meat, and sometimes it’ll be just beans – but it’s always worth the try!
- Don’t get too hung up on food groups. At this point, you’re just trying to make sure your toddler eats enough and keeps gaining weight. Do my girls eat vegetables every day? Probably not. But there’s usually some combination of fruit or vegetable at least every other day, so I don’t get too hung up on the details. If my girls eat, I’m happy.
- Yogurt is your best friend – especially in easy to eat packages. Neither of my kids are big meat eaters, so protein has always been a concern. I love finding alternate sources of protein, and yogurt is one of my favorites. We especially love Happy Family’s Happy Tot Whole Milk Yogurt Pouches and buy them almost every week. The fact that I have countless photos of Ella eating this yogurt is a testament to that! In fact, many of you may remember this post where I talked about the Happy Baby Whole Milk Yogurt Cups – shortly afterward, I started buying the Yogurt Pouches and never looked back. Ella loves the flavors and gets excited whenever she sees them in the fridge, and it’s always a good way to get some fruit and veggies in too, since they’re blended in. We always pick up our Yogurt Pouches at Target in the boxes, but I love that they’re available as single pouches too!
- Get siblings and friends involved when you can. I can’t tell you the number of things Abbie has started to eat just because her friends were eating it! Children are highly influenced by their peers, so take advantage when you can!
- Be flexible. They’re going to throw you off. Toddlers are going to change their minds and like the strangest things – basically, everything you can think of and countless things you won’t. Just go with the flow as much as you can so you don’t get frustrated!
What are your tips for dealing with picky eaters?