Are you looking for picky toddler eating tips? Then you have come to the right place! I hear the same story from my parent friends all the time. My baby used to eat everything, and now, all of a sudden, he’s picky.
This story usually happens right around 18 months to 2 years old, the prime of the toddler years.
I had a similar experience just as my twins were turning 2 years old, where they stopped eating whatever was offered.
The twins are now 3 years old and they are great eaters. Of course they continue to test the boundaries, mostly by asking for snacks and treats.
Since the twins actually like to eat vegetables, I thought I would share some simple picky toddler eating tips. I hope these tips help get your toddler back to being the good eater you once knew.
Do Not Offer Options
Give your kids what you have made for the meal. If they do not eat it, do not offer other food you know they like. This leads us to the next tip…
If Your Picky Toddler Doesn’t Eat, It’s Okay
Trust me, if your kids are hungry they will eat something. If my kids do not eat their meal, I save it. When they say they are hungry later on, I offer the meal they did not eat as the only option.
If they are truly hungry, they eat it.
No Snacks Before or After Meals
Lately, my kids have started asking for snacks before and after dinner. Like most people, they love snacks, goldfish, trail mix, cookies, animal crackers, cereal, etc.
I was letting them have snacks because they said they were hungry. However, I realized this meant they weren’t eating their dinner. They either filled up before dinner or didn’t eat dinner then asked for a snack afterwards.
Now, I don’t give them snacks 1 hour before dinner. If they did not eat all their dinner, as discussed above, I offer what they didn’t finish.
Offer A Reward For Good Eating
Sometimes I offer a treat if they finish their meal. I try not to do this everyday so it’s not expected, but it’s fun for the kids and a good incentive for them to eat their meals.
Let Your Toddler Try EVERYTHING
Do not assume your kids will not like something. If my kids want to try something I let them, even if I do not think they will like it. Sometimes they have really surprised me with what they like.
Do Not Make A Big Fuss Over Not Eating
If your child tries something for the first time and he doesn’t like it or if your toddler just doesn’t want to eat that day, do not make a big deal about it.
Don’t try to force them to eat or punish them for not eating. Just move on to the next activity. Save the leftover food and if your child is hungry later offer it (as discussed above).
Eat With Your Kids
It’s very important that your kids see you eating a well balanced diet as well. If they see you eating the same things they are eating, it is likely they will be more eager to eat it.
This is easily accomplished by eating meals together as a family and everyone eating the same meal. An added bonus is you will get quality family time!
7 Picky Toddler Eating Tips
To summarize here is the list of the seven easy things you can do to help stop your toddler’s picky eating phase.
- Do Not Offer Options
- If Your Toddler Doesn’t Eat, It’s Okay
- No Snacks Before or After Meals
- Offer Rewards For Good Eating
- Let Them Try EVERYTHING
- Do Not Make A Big Fuss Over Not Eating
- Eat With Your Kids
The earlier you start using these picky toddler eating tips, the easier it will be to prevent (or reverse) your toddler’s picky eating.
I know it’s just not easy some days. Maybe you just can’t get your toddler to listen or he has a tantrum because he can’t have a piece of candy. But, don’t give in, and within a week I’m confident your toddler’s eating habits will improve.
Related reading: The Best Leak Proof Sippy Cups For Toddlers
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