How can I get my child to eat more fruits and vegetables? We all know how important these foods are, but sometimes it’s tricky to get your child excited about eating them. Below you will find some helpful tips to help encourage your child to try new fruits and vegetables:
- Plant a garden with your child. Have them help choose the vegetables and herbs they want to grow. Let them help care for and harvest the crop. Children are often much more interested in trying new foods that they have helped plant and watched grow. Encourage your child to plant various sizes, colors and shaped vegetables.
- Try making a smoothie using fresh fruits and vegetables. Encourage your child to help you in the kitchen. Some children will prefer to ‘drink’ their fruits and veggies.
- Make a colorful ‘rainbow’ of tiny pieces of fresh fruits and vegetables using an ice cube tray as a ‘serving dish.’ Mini forks (sold at most party stores and often used for appetizers) make fun utensils to try different colored fruits and vegetables in child-friendly bite-sized pieces.
- Don’t forget the dip! Dip can serve as an excellent tool to encourage a child to try new fruits and vegetables. Fruits and veggies cut in matchstick slices make excellent ‘paintbrushes’ for all kinds of different dips. Some examples of dips include: salad dressings, hummus, salsa, peanut butter, yogurt, applesauce or even pudding! Children can be encouraged to ‘paint’ their plate using their fruit or vegetable ‘paintbrush’ with their ‘dip’ for paint.
- Remember that repeated exposure is very important in encouraging children to try new foods, including fruits and vegetables!
**Be sure to address any feeding therapy or nutritional concerns with your child’s physician or therapist**