In a Rut? Here Are Some Toddler Meal Ideas

I’ve been in a rut with feeding my toddler lately. It just gets easy in the craziness of life to feed her dinosaur chicken nuggets and sliced apples for another meal! She is fairly picky and once 11:30am hits, I just don’t have the capacity to brainstorm and execute a varied meal for her. She deserves nutritious foods that will help her grow strong and healthy!

So I’ve turned to Pinterest to help me out. Planning ahead makes a world of difference, so I can shop for and mentally prepare to introduce new flavors and textures to her. I found a few resources on Pinterest that have me feeling inspired and wanting to do a better job of giving my girl more and better options.

Strawberries + Cucumber with hummus + Chicken & Black Bean Quesadilla

Strawberries + Peanut Butter Toast + pre-cooked sausage

Watermelon + Roasted Potatoes with ketchup + Avocado Chicken Burger

Avocado + Hard Boiled Egg + Strawberries + Turkey

I’m always surprised at what she’ll actually eat if I cut the food small or cute enough! If I cut the cucumber into long strips she is way more likely to dip and eat them! She loves hard boiled eggs diced with salt and pepper! So often I’ll peel a hard boiled egg and hand it to her like that, and she takes one nip and is done. But if it’s chopped up with salt and pepper she’ll eat the entire thing. Presentation is everything! My daughter also loves any kind of lunchmeat. It is easy, healthy and gives her a “main course” without making her eat a sandwich!

Avocado + Blueberries + Costco Cheese Tortellini + Pesto

Plum + Chicken Parmesan with zoodles

Raspberries + Daisy Cottage Cheese + Balsamic Chicken Caprese Pasta with marinara

Watermelon + Pesto Tortellini + Turmeric Chicken + Hummus and crackers

Avocado is my secret mom weapon! My kids adore them and they are so so nutritious! I used to buy them just for me and my husband because they are so expensive, but have recently begun giving them to the kids as well. I want them to be adventurous eaters and I can’t expect that to happen if I don’t give them a chance to love the finer things in life!

Tortellini is a great example of something you could use up from leftovers and fits in really well on a lunch plate for toddlers. This is also the case for many of the “main dishes” i’m suggesting. Chicken parmesan from the night before, a pre-cooked sausage from the BBQ over the weekend- cut up small these are all good ideas for cleaning out your refrigerator and feeding your toddler!

I am not very good at feeding my kids foods that I don’t like myself. I have an aversion to cottage cheese, so I don’t buy it regularly and would never consider serving it to someone else to eat plain. But when the kids went to stay with my parents for a week, they reported that my girls each ate a big bowl of cottage cheese each morning with breakfast! This was just a reminder to me that I should be offering my kids foods that even I don’t particularly love!

This month, I am going to try presenting my daughters’ food on partitioned plates, cut up nicely and enticing to eat. I hope it goes well and can’t wait to find success in feeding my kids a wider variety of better quality food. Let me know if you have any secret tricks or Pinterest links for more meal ideas for toddlers!


    Stefanie Hathaway
    Monthly Newsletter Contributor since 2016
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