Raising a non-picky eater can be a difficult task in today’s society. There are so many foods that kids would prefer over what is healthy. In all of my research and in all of my experience with kids, I have found that picky eaters typically start at the time of starting solids. Parents many times are afraid of giving their children anything other than bland foods, and that becomes the child’s preference (other than sweet of course).
Starting solids with baby is something that most parents want to rush into. It’s something that excites them and for many I think it is something that makes them feel like their baby is just a little bit more human and more fun. For our family, we wanted to wait as long as possible. This was because “food before one is just for fun” so I could control my child’s nutrition easier with just breast milk.
Our daughter did not receive her first solid food until about 8 months and even then she didn’t truly get anything regularly until 10 months and didn’t really eat anything until around 14 months. For me, this was a victory. It meant my child’s intestines were forming and her body was getting ready to eat food before she even had the food. We skipped purees, we skipped cereals, and we skipped anything that wasn’t an adventurous, flavorful, and nutritious food.
My daughter is almost 19 months now and she happily eats Pad Thai, Pho, spicy cheeses, goat cheese pizza, a variety, of veggies and more. There are few foods that she does not like or “refunds” as we say. We attribute this to not only waiting until she was ready to eat, but also to not being afraid to feed her spices and a variety of foods. We only offer her what we deem acceptable for her to eat. She has never had a traditional cake, we don’t buy cheerios or bland filler snacks, and we only keep things in the house that are wholesome and nutritious.
In the end, not rushing a child to eat, not being afraid to give children spices, and giving them a variety of food all the time is what makes a child less likely to be picky. Raising a non-picky eater may also come in phases. I know there are foods that my daughter loved a month ago, but now does not prefer. But continually offering them is also key.
Find more great ideas on feeding baby
Ultimate Guide to Feeding Baby ~ Lemon Lime Adventures
9+ Tips for Breastfeeding (Twins or Single Babies) ~ The Stay-at-Home-Mom Survival Guide
My Best Breastfeeding Advice ~ Bare Feet on the Dashboard
Tips to Avoid a Breastfeeding Burnout ~ The Realistic Mama
Do You Give Her Water? Changing Times, Changing Advice ~ Let the Journey Begin
Our Feeding Stories ~ Trust Me, I’m a Mom
Tips for Unexpected Bottle Feeding of your Baby ~ Powerful Mothering
Top 5 No-Cook Baby Food Recipes ~ True Aim Education
Raising a Non-Picky Eater ~ ALLterNATIVElearning
Making and Storing Your Own Baby Food ~ Peace but Not Quiet
Montessori Weaning Table ~ Living Montessori Now
Quick & Healthy Meal Ideas for Babies ~ The Eyes of a Boy
The Best Baby Food Recipe Books ~ Still Playing School
Why I skipped purees ~ Dirt and Boogers
Kara is an author, wife, and mother of 3 children living in Boston, MA. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and even helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!