Eating healthy is often difficult for kids and parents alike. Kids can be picky and hesitant to try new foods. Parents may find it challenging to get their kids to eat more fruit, as well as vegetables. But by making some simple tweaks, you’ll be able to introduce your kids to the benefits of eating more fruit! Here are seven ways that will show just how easy it is.
Make Fruit Fun
Kids are more likely to try something new if they’re having fun. So, instead of approaching your child with a stern tone and demanding that they eat their fruit, take the opportunity to have some fun! Suggest experimenting with different colors of fruit or taking turns picking out fruits at the store. You can even make up your own game like “guess what color it is,” or “can you find something that is the same shape as a banana?”
Get Sneaky and Blend It Into Other Foods
The easiest way to get your kids to eat fruits and vegetables is to blend them into the food they already like. For instance, if your child enjoys smoothies, you can add fruit or vegetables to their favorite drink. This strategy also works well with soups, sauces, oatmeal, and ice cream.
While this doesn’t combat their dislike of trying fruits and veggies, it will ensure they still eat them even if they don’t know it.
Get Kids to Eat More Fruit by Giving Them Options
Offer your child a variety of fruit and vegetables. You can also offer them two different options and let them choose which one they want. If they’re unsure about what to try, ask them which option they like the best.
Why not try a chart to encourage them to try new fruits or track what they are eating each day. Much in the same way, you have a reward chart for good behavior. Talk to them about their choices and see what they have tried by adding it to a chart each day. Use stickers or pictures to make it more fun for them.
Make It Messy
Some kids love to get their hands dirty. This is a great way to make eating fruit more fun for them. Cut up the fruit and let them scoop it up with their hands or use a spoon. Making a mess around the kitchen may not be ideal for you, but this will be a great memory for your child!
For younger kids, encourage messy play and let them eat from clean surfaces while doing so. Chances are if they don’t feel forced to eat it, touch it and play with it, the more inclined to try it they will be.
Get Them Involved in the Preparation
Kids love to help and feel like they’re participating – so get them involved in preparation! This is a great way to teach them about the food they’re eating and, at the same time, make it more enticing. If your child is old enough, involve them in the grocery shopping process and create more complex recipes such as a homemade compote recipe. Let your child pick out the fruit or vegetable that they will eat for dinner. You can even let them do some of the prep work for dinner. If you have a younger child, involve them in putting fruit and vegetables on their plate and tell them what each item is.
Get Kids to Eat More Fruit by Being Creative
It can be a challenge to get kids to try a portion of new food. Sometimes the only way to do it is by being creative. Try cutting up their favorite fruit and creating a fruit stir fry, a sweet fruit pizza with chocolate or yogurt spread, or fruit sushi for them to try. Kids will love the fun presentation of these dishes!
Keep Fruit in Sight All the Time
One of the first rules of thumb for getting kids to eat more fruit is to keep fruit in sight all the time. This not only includes what you serve at dinner but also what’s on the breakfast table and in their lunchboxes. Stocking your pantry with healthy snacks is a great start. You can also fill up the fridge with fruit that’s easy for kids to grab when they come home from school or before bedtime.
When it comes to introducing more fruit to your child’s diet or different fruits, the key is to not force them into eating it if they are hesitant; this will only make them more determined not to try it. Instead, get creative with how you approach it and allow them to take the first step themselves by satisfying their curiosity.