Tuesday 21 March 2023

How to encourage your fussy feeders to enjoy their meals

This is a collaborative post

If you have a child that is very fussy around food, it can be easy to get frustrated with their lack of cooperation. Before you know it, every mealtime has the potential to become a battleground, as you attempt to cajole your young ones into eating their greens or trying that new pasta dish. 

Unfortunately, getting frustrated can do more harm than good. It’s best to try and come up with a variety of gently persuasive strategies to show your child that eating as many different foods as possible can actually be a rewarding and enjoyable experience. 

With that goal in mind, here are some top tips to get you started. 

Start off small

If you’re weary of your child’s restricted appetite and you’re keen to get them to sample new foods, it may be more effective if you start off with very small portions. 

After all, if your child is super fussy, then introducing a new type of food could be alarming for your little one - or at best, off-putting. By placing just a tiny amount on their plate, or in a little cup or saucer at their elbow, you can help to make the prospect less intimidating and hopefully pique their curiosity. 

Feed them facts

Children are famously curious little creatures, so one technique that may prove particularly effective is to give them some fun facts about their food and where it comes from. In fact, you may find it interesting to do some research on this matter yourself! Recent research has revealed that significant numbers of British adults have admitted to having poor knowledge of how their food is grown and where it comes.

The good news is, there are plenty of enjoyable ways to find out – from watching educational programs to trying to grow your own, and maybe even visiting a local farm to pick your own fruit.

Vegetables harvested
Photo credit CA Creative via Unsplash

Try a new gadget

Sometimes, your efforts at placating a fussy feeder can be helped by introducing some helpful new culinary tools and gadgets. For instance, if your child prefers fast food fries or chicken to your home-cooked version, you can produce the same kind of mouth-watering taste – but in a much healthier way – by using an air fryer. 

It’s not just fried chicken and chips that you can whip up in a hurry using air fryers such as these cost-effective models stocked by OnBuy. They can also be used to prepare a range of other delicious meals, from roasted veg to desserts, giving you plenty of options for your fussy eater. 

And finally - make food more fun!

If your finicky feeder is being particularly difficult, then a tactic you may want to try is experimenting with ways to make mealtimes more fun. For instance, you could make faces and figures out of the different ingredients, create colourful fruit kebabs, or serve miniature meals inside dainty ramekins so they will feel like they’re eating at a fairy’s table. 

By making mealtimes entertaining, you can help to distract them enough to actually take a bite and discover that new foods aren’t that bad after all!

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