I think there are basically two ways to get toddlers to eat veggies: either it’s snuck into their food all stealthy-like or you actually give it to them straight up.
Let’s face it, toddlers are so smart. They know what they prefer to eat and that usually doesn’t include vegetables. That leaves us moms in a panic, worrying about how our child will get their nutritional needs met.
Mama, I so hear ya on that one.
Before we dive in, I do want to put in one caveat.
There is a difference between a picky eater and having a food sensory issue. If you have a concern that your child’s eating habit is more than being picky, trust your mom gut and reach out to your pediatrician to help you navigate those concerns.
With that being said, let’s talk food. YUM!
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Sweet potato fries are amazing.
God is so good. He created a food that is not only sweet, but it’s also a vegetable too (it’s true, I looked it up!).
Yes, I know that if it was processed into a fry, it’s not going to be as nutritious as its original form. But we just need vegetables to get into our toddlers’ little tummies, okay?
This is the brand that I use with my kiddos. I’ve tried other brands, and I’ve tried the puff versus crinkly versus regular options and always come back to this one.
My toddlers devour these. I do know that most local stores carry this as well like Walmart (not sponsored).
My family loves to dip them with Chick Fil-A sauce, that stuff goes with everything!
Top off your toddler’s veggies with something they do like to eat
Toddlers are not that far off from us adults when it comes to eating vegetables. Most of us like veggies a certain way.
Cooked versus raw
Mixed into something else versus by itself
Dipped or covered
You get my point, right? Pay attention to what textures of veggies your toddler prefers to eat. Then whatever they don’t eat is what might need a little extra “oomph”.
Putting ranch or shredded cheese over cooked vegetables makes broccoli or carrots look much more appealing to little eyes.
If you have any non-dairy alternative ideas, please share in the comment section! 🙂
I personally did not grow up eating hummus, but I grew to love it as an adult. I definitely ate a lot when I was pregnant with both children. So it is no surprise to me that they eat it all the time too.
Chickpeas (primary ingredient) is considered a vegetable. There are so many recipes out there that incorporate hummus.
Typically, my children will eat it with organic tortilla chips but sometimes they eat it just by itself too.
Smoothies are a great way for toddlers to eat veggies. Especially the leafy green ones like spinach and kale that are so good for you but so hard to convince most of us to eat.
The key to sneaking in some greens to a smoothie is to have the perfect ratio of fruit to vegetable. There are a lot of great recipes out there that use fresh ingredients, but fresh produce can go bad very quickly.
I stick to frozen smoothie mixes. They last longer and are pre-cut and measured for the perfect balance. Just blend and hand it to your little one, it’s also a great option for taking something on the go.
If you’re feeling really sassy, you can always throw in a little bit of chia and flax seeds too!
Fruit and vegetable pouches
Chances are that your toddler has already had pouches before. And, why not? They are typically less messy, portable, and kids like them.
Of course, the ultimate goal is to get your toddler to eat “real” veggies versus pouches, but they help for ease of mind. While your toddler is going through this hopefully temporary phase of picky eating, knowing that they are still getting vegetables via pouches is okay.
These are my favorite pouches to get because they cover major nutritional needs all in one: vegetables, fruit, protein and grains.
Toddler multivitamin to help bridge nutritional gaps
This one obviously isn’t another way to get your toddler to eat veggies, but I still wanted to mention this tip.
Even if we serve up the most nutritionally dense meals we can, there is most likely still a vitamin that is deficient. We all know that some days, all your toddler will eat is snacks and anything that isn’t healthy whatsoever.
Vitamins aren’t a cure all and definitely not a substitute from true nutrition, but they do aid in growing toddlers to be healthy and strong. Reminder, check with the pediatrician before you give any supplements to your toddler.
I recommend these vitamins greatly. What I love about them is that they have probiotics included with the vitamins, which helps with overall gut health.
My oldest toddler scarfs it down no problem and refers to it as “candy”.
That’s a win-win in my book!
I hope you find these tips helpful and easy to implement when feeding your toddler. As a mom, I get how stressful mealtimes can get, you just want what’s best for your child.
Stay persistent in your effort to offer healthy options to your toddler, work with their doctor, and supplement where needed. As long as they are continuing to grow and get stronger, pat yourself on the back for a job well done!