As a parent, it’s easy to feel like we live in a vacuum as far as what our kids do and don’t do. Getting them to eat (anything) is challenging, let alone getting them to eat healthy. The other day as I watched my three-year-old shovel In-N-Out french fries into his pie hole, I started to feel…well…kinda guilty.
Then, when I went home, I thought about it and realized he really doesn’t eat so badly…for a 3 year-old. I mean, he likes healthy stuff.
No, he DOES.
So, I sat down and made a list of the healthy foods he likes. He even occasionally eats foods he doesn’t really like, too, if there’s a treat waiting at the end. But really, these are foods he really, actually will eat with no issues, and even request, much of the time.
Many moms like myself are always looking to get their toddler to try new things. I wonder if you’d share some of the healthy foods your toddler eats, too. Perhaps this can be a good list for all of us to try. Of course, we all know, each kid is unique, especially when it comes to food, so there’s a good chance yours will not like what mine likes and vice versa, but all we can do is try, right? Right? Who’s with me?
Almond butter 1 of 10We like this more than peanut butter but he likes peanut butter, too. We go for the unsalted, raw variety, with no added sugar. He'll eat it in a sandwich, on toast with bananas and cinnamon, on apple slices, with a spoon, etc...
Any Fruit 2 of 10I am thankful for fruit. At least my toddler eats fruit, almost any fruit.
Milk 3 of 10The "healthiness" of cow's milk comes into question, especially with so many lactose intolerant folks out there. However, my little dude is not allergic and he enjoys a glass every now and then, and I'm glad for the calcium it provides.
Granola 4 of 10A good granola is made from healthy whole grains and nuts. Many can have added sugar so you have to be wary of that, but if you make it yourself or get it a low-sugar variety, it's great. My toddler will eat with milk or yogurt.
Oatmeal 5 of 10Heart-healthy oatmeal isn't just for oldsters. My little dude requests this stuff on a regular basis. Cinnamon? Yes, please.
Avocado 6 of 10I can slice up one of these suckers and put a little salt on it. He'll eat it plain.
Salmon 7 of 10This is the one protein he'll reliably eat.
Kale 8 of 10Yes, I said kale. I cook it in olive oil, add a pinch of salt and some lemon.
"Can I have some lemony kale, mommy? Please?"
Even better if it's purple. The babysitter discovered that he liked kale and I'm going to milk it as long as I can.
Yogurt 9 of 10Thank goodness for yogurt, too. We aim to find the lowest sugar variety in the store. Sometimes he'll eat plain yogurt with a dollop of honey. He does have Mediterranean blood, so maybe that's why.
Nori 10 of 10Seaweed. Hey, it's green. I'll take it.
Here are some other healthy snack ideas for preschool.
Lettuce: Michele Pegoraro on Flickr
Salmon: James Bowe on Flickr
Milk: striatic on Flickr
Yogurt: Elaine Ashton on Flickr
Granola: moria on Flickr
Oatmeal: Micah Sittig on Flickr
Orange: Liz West on Flickr
Purple Kale: Nick Saltmarsh on Flickr
Avocado: Darwin Bell on Flickr
Almond Butter: Marc Majcher on Flickr