If you have a toddler who is a picky eater, know this – you are not alone. Getting high nutrition foods in their bellies can feel nearly impossible.
Toddlers are naturally picky eaters. Although it’s discouraging to fight over food every single night, know that their food pecking and poking is normal – to a certain extent.
Toddlers from 1 to 3 need about 1,000 to 1,300 calories a day, but it isn’t uncommon for them not to eat this amount each day.
Rather than aiming for a nutritionally balanced day, aim for a nutritionally balanced week.
What we’ve learned most about feeding a picky toddler is it our job to prepare nutritious food and serve it creatively. We then, for the most part, leave the rest up to our kids.
If you’re looking for a little help in the nutritious food group or creative department, keep reading for four groups of high nutrition foods for toddlers (including their creative recipes!).
Citric fruits can be a difficult fruit for a picky eater, because of their textures.
But they are packed with Vitamin C which is not only good for fighting off the common cold, but helps hold the body’s cells together and strengthen blood vessels.
For a high level of vitamin C get creative with foods such as:
High Nutrition Food Group: Calcium
Spinach is packed with more calcium than one would think and is important for healthy bones, teeth and muscle function.
Our picky eater won’t touch vegetables and a lot of the citric fruits as she has texture issues.
We’ve found smoothies to be a lifesaver. If you’re looking for a good fruit and vegetable smoothie that has fooled our kiddo, try this Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Smoothie.
Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Smoothie
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 banana
- 1 orange
- 1 cup pineapple frozen
Add all ingredients.
Blend until smooth
High Nutrition Food Group: Nuts
Anytime you can sneak a form of nut into your child’s diet – you’re winning. Nuts are an essential source of protein, fats, iron, and fiber.
Nuts help to build cells, breakdown food into energy, build healthy blood, and produce regularity in bowel movements.
We’ve found that offering just handful of almonds or peanuts are not appealing enough.
But peanut butter, almond butter, or even hazelnut butter that is creatively offered has been a hit.
We’ve made PB& J Sushi and also the following super fun Peanut Butter filled Turtles.
High Nutrition Food Group: Whole Grains
Helping to build healthy blood that carries oxygen, whole grain foods, are ideal for iron intake. They also sound way too healthy and may throw your picky toddler into a tantrum.
We have tried granola, energy bites, and brown rice to no avail.
But we have found that these Baby Banana Pancakes not only sneak in whole grains but also some much-needed fruit.
Most parents will struggle with a picky toddler, at some point. We hope you can find a way to incorporate some of these high nutrition foods into your toddlers diet.