Meet the Sullivans: Tools for Feeding My Picky Little Eater

April 17, 2013

Tools for Feeding My Picky Little Eater

I never thought I would be the mom of a picky eater.

Owen is just a few months over a year old, so maybe it's too early to deem him "picky", but it sure does seem that way--especially when I see / hear of other babies his age happily and willingly eating fruits and vegetables at each meal.

Meal time can be super stressful. When it comes around to breakfast, lunch or dinner time I don't have much time to waste thinking of what to give him or how to cook it up, so along the way I've discovered some ways to help me prep fresh food for Owen quickly.

With Owen I need to get food in front of him quick before he melts down. He does not like to be contained in his chair if he doesn't need to be, so I usually put his food on a plate before I even put him in there. This means he needs to be occupied for at least a few minute while I scramble to prepare his meal.

I love all of the recipes in the baby cookbooks I've read, but the time put into them is never worth it for me. I slave in the kitchen making a nutritious meal for Owen only to have him stick his nose up at it. Whatever food I prepare for him needs to be nutritious, delicious and FAST!

As the mom of a picky eater I want to share what is working for us and some little tools of the trade we've been using to make sure Owen gets as much nutritious food as possible.

The Cast of Characters

Smoothies, Pouches or the Little Green Pouch - Like I said, Owen is just not into eating fruits and veggies. He does, on the other hand, like fruit and veggie smoothies and pouches. To get Owen to eat a balanced meal I often resort to either making him a Green Smoothie to accompany his meal or offer him a pouch. So when it comes to eating fruit and veggies plain, maybe it's the texture? Use the code PARENTSMAG for 10% off your Little Green Pouch order.

Box Grater - This is something I only discovered recently, and I wish I had thought of it earlier. I've been using the box grater to grate up practically everything for Owen. I no longer have to bake apples before serving them to him (just because I offer them doesn't mean he's eating 'em. He still refuses most of the time). You can really use this method for any sort of fruit or veggie. It saves you from having to pre-cook or chop things into teeny tiny pieces. The box grater grates pieces thing and short, which is perfect for kids. 

Immersion Blender - I'm a huge fan of this kitchen tool for all kinds of cooking tasks and I also love using it to prep my baby's food. I use this to smooth out a chunky stew so Owen can easily self feed. It's also handy when I want to make him a single serving smoothie and don't want to dirty up our giant blender. It's faster than lugging the blender out of the cabinet and because I can just immerse it in whatever glass I'm using there aren't as many dishes to clean up once I'm all done.  Also, you can use it to puree vegetables to sneak into sauces and soups!

Wavy Knife - The wavy knife is a wonderful tool to have on hand when feeding a toddler. The little curves and crevices it creates help Owen get a good grip on the slippery fruits and veggies. Melon is one of the fruits I have had the most success feeding Owen, but it can be so slippery when I try to chop it up for him. When I use the wavy knife I can makes small, thin, french fry bits for him that he can easily handle. It makes them look a lot more fun too! 

Kitchen Sheers - Using sheers is so much easier than chopping up all of his food into tiny pieces. I mainly use these on things I can't really grate, like tortillas or meat.

Do you have any tricks you use in the kitchen with your kids? I'm all for new easy and simple ways to make life flow more smoothly!


Samma said...

Love love love the box grater idea!

Emily said...

I am so happy you shared these tips Colleen! I was thinking about asking you some of your ideas for feeding toddlers because my Owen seems to be the exact same way! I am pinning this so I can refer back to it on my next store run. Thanks!!

erin vancura said...

Box grater and wavy knife?! Seriously GENIUS. Lex is picky too. She hates Mac n cheese (maybe because it's fancy and I sneak squash into it?). What kid hates Mac n cheese?!

erin vancura said...

Ps- our picky food tool is ketchup. But hey, it works?