For toddler meals, the trick is quick and easy. Toddlers hardly want cordon bleu cooking, so don’t rack your brains thinking of what to do!
Naturally, though, you’re going to add some variety even if not really appreciated but wolfed down like everything else. That’s the responsible mother in you.
These days, your daily pressures are very different and you’re coping as best you can. Toddler meal recipes are hardly at the top of your list, but they are very important, nonetheless.
What is also vital is that the meals are healthy. Make sure that each meal has one fruit – you can alternate with apples, bananas, pears, and oranges. Note that “whole” fruits are much better than fruit juice!
Include avocados, corn on the cob, spinach, potatoes, and broccoli. These foods are all rich in vitamins and excellent for the growth of your toddlers. Items such as broccoli need to be steamed so they are soft and mashed potato is the thing.
Chop carrots up finely
Include carrots, which must be chopped up finely for a quick snack, especially if your kid is under 4. They should naturally not be served anything that could lead to choking!
Kids love fish sticks dipped in tomato sauce, so you can have this snack during the day, or even as an evening meal, together with fruits and veggies. If they have their daily fruit and essential veggies, they can eat most anything.
An obvious favorite is peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Get them used to wholewheat bread right from the get-go. White bread is out.
One item that is a big no-no these days is sugar. As any nutritionist will tell you, sugar and diabetes go together, and that disease is so ubiquitous these days. We’re talking Type 2 here, which mainly is a result of poor diet and excess weight. Type 1 diabetes is a birth illness and a good diet without sugar is essential.
Do your child a favor and make your home a sugar-free area right from when they can remember. Chuck out the cereals which your kids love. They are chock-a-block full of sugar. What you can give them instead is scrambled eggs, which are rich in protein. That really is a great way to start the day.
They can have a glass of milk. Go for the milk with added vitamins. Yogurt is also great and can be had in the mornings or taken to school in their lunch packs.
Allergen tests important
Nuts are also good source of protein, so make sure they have some in their lunch pack. While we’re on the subject of nuts, it would pay you to take your kids for allergen tests. One of the most common allergies today is nuts, and this could be life-threatening.
For evening meals, there should always be a bowl of fresh fruit on the table. There should also be a jug of room-temperature water. Encourage them to drink a lot of water. It’s a good purifier and regenerator and a habit that would be good to start early.
Pasta is also rich in protein and fiber and can be served as the main meal. You can add chicken or mince to the pasta and that makes for a tasty meal. Don’t overdo the pasta, though. It could cause digestion problems, so just a small amount will do. This is a “now and then” dish and you’ll soon know if there are any problems.
Should you be giving your kids nutritional supplements? Most nutritionists are strongly against this, stating that all the vitamins that are needed for their growth can be found in fruit and fresh vegetables. It’s only as they grow older that they could need supplements as they get depleted quicker.
Make the plates colorful with the different colors of veggies. Kids love the look of this. The success of the healthy regimen is if at first you don’t succeed, try, and try again!