The Struggle of the Picky Eater: 3 Ways to Get Them to Try New Things

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If you have a picky eater in your family, you know how difficult it can be to get them to try new foods. Mealtime can quickly become a power struggle, and you may constantly feel on the defensive. But don’t worry; there are solutions to this common problem! In this blog post, we’ll discuss the struggles of having a picky eater and provide three strategies to help them try new things.

Introduce new foods gradually

If you have a picky eater at home, you know that getting them to try new foods can be an uphill battle. However, introducing new foods gradually can be an effective way to get your picky eater to branch out and try something new. Here are some tips for introducing fresh foods to your picky eater: 

  • Start small: Offer your picky eater a bite or two of the new food. This will give them a chance to try it without feeling overwhelmed.
  • Involve them in the decision-making process: Ask your picky eater what they want to try. This will help them feel more comfortable and in control of the situation.
  • Start with familiar flavors: If your picky eater likes certain flavors, look for dishes that incorporate those flavors but also contain unfamiliar ingredients. This way, your picky eater can get familiar with the taste without being completely overwhelmed by an entirely new flavor profile.
  • Keep trying: Don’t give up if your picky eater doesn’t like the new food right away. Continue to offer it in small portions over time; eventually, they may come around.

Introducing new foods to a picky eater can be a slow process, but with some patience and these helpful tips, you can help your picky eater become more adventurous and open to trying new things!

Play Dress Up While Cooking

Why not make it fun if you’re having difficulty getting your picky eater to try new food? There are lots of imaginative ways to make food fun for picky eaters. Let them play dress up while you cook. For example, getting dressed up in a princess dress for girls and setting the table for the “fancy feast” may help in wanting to eat like an actual princess. You can also get creative with the costumes and make them into a game. For instance, if you’re making a veggie stir-fry, let them wear an astronaut suit and tell them that they must try the veggies so they can “blast off” in their rocket ship.

Let them help with meal prep

Getting picky eaters to try new foods can be challenging, but one of the best ways to get them involved is by letting them help with meal prep. By allowing them to help, you’re showing that you value their input, which can make a difference. It also gives them ownership over the meal, making them more likely to try it.

When helping with meal prep, you can start small. Let them tear lettuce leaves for a salad or stir a pot of soup. As they get more comfortable in the kitchen, they can graduate to more complex tasks like making scrambled eggs or grating cheese. You can also involve your picky eater in deciding what meals to make. Ask them about their favorite vegetables or proteins, and then work together to create a dish everyone will enjoy. For example, try making a simple spinach frittata if they like spinach. If they want salmon, make a salmon and veggie sheet pan dinner.

Finally, don’t forget about the presentation. Making food look as delicious as possible will appeal to even the pickiest eaters. Get your kids involved in plating the food, making garnishes, and experimenting with colors. Making them part of the process gives them a sense of pride and ownership over their meals.

Remember to get them their kitchen helper accessories, such as an apron in their size, cooking utensils, and a cookbook! Giving them the decision on what to have for dinner and including them can make a difference.

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