I have been battling with my toddler to eat vegetables ever since I can remember. I have tried so many different things, from hiding pureed carrots and sweet potato in bolognaise sauce (which lasted about 2 weeks) to telling him that if he doesn’t eat his green beans he won’t grow to be big and strong (which never got off the ground). It was becoming an every day battle and I usually came out the loser.
My toddler is a ‘dairyvore’ – he could happily survive on cheese sticks, although his preference is Jarlsberg, as well as strawberry, yoghurt and milk. I guess on the upside this is better than having a ‘treativore’ which I think my youngest is shaping up to be, but for the moment at least she dabbles in beans and pumpkins.
Creative ways to get toddlers to eat vegetables
There are so many websites dedicated to creative ways to encourage vegetable eating and one I had some success with was on kidspot. My toddler is tricked into his vegetables when I make a dip out of pumpkin and avocado with crackers to dip into it. The crackers being the drawcard. A friend of mine bakes the yummiest vegetable cake (carrot and zucchini) for her ‘treativore’ but we had no luck with it in our house. On the whole these creative ways to eat vegetables just didn’t work for my toddler. In the end there were two things which stuck in my mind – no toddler will intentionally starve themselves and just keep trying.
Dinnertime for my toddlers. Vegetables included
So after almost giving up and letting my toddler eat his dream meal every night (Jarlsberg and yoghurt), I gave it one last shot. I tried what the French do. I serve up the meal in courses starting with vegetables and ending with his favourite dairy, with something in between. We don’t get to eat the food we want until we have at least had some vegetables. The first night I tried this my toddler refused and I’m sure went to bed hungry. The next night he gave vegetables (pumpkin) a small try and we seem to be getting a little better every week. I don’t think we’re ready for a big vegetable stir-fry yet, but I have hope.
This blog post is brought to you and your baby with love by Julia and the Itchy Baby Co. team x