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How do you get your toddler to eat green vegetables?

My 18 month old will only eat vegetables if I put them in pancakes (like squash and corn and sweet potatoes) and only eats green vegetables if I bribe him with hot dogs. I'm looking for suggestions on how to get him to eat more green vegetables without having to feed him hot dogs too!

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Asked by Aimee139 at 3:25 PM on Dec. 15, 2008 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (6)
  • Forget the hotdogs...just keep putting them on his plate. They say you have to introduce vegies to children more than 50 times...I would have my daughter kiss the food and in time she actually would try it....Her OT teacher told me to try that..

    Answer by Dannee at 3:39 PM on Dec. 15, 2008

  • Try, try again :) My 5yo still HATES green beans, but he has to eat at least 2 before he is allowed to have dessert (fruit). Trust me, he wants his after-dinner fruit, so he chokes 'em down! LOL

    Answer by Luvmylilmonkies at 3:47 PM on Dec. 15, 2008

  • Stop using bribes. All it teaches is that they don't have to do something unless they get 'paid' for it. I taught my kids to eat veggies by really enforcing how much I loved something. They wanted to eat what I was so happy about, so they usually did.

    Answer by Ginger0104 at 3:48 PM on Dec. 15, 2008

  • I agree with ditching the bribe. It doesn't matter if it's a dessert or a hot dog - it teaches them "this food is so bad that I have to bribe you to eat it."

    Just keep offering the veggies. I had to offer my daughter peas over 30 times before she tried them. I also make sure I don't put very much food on her plate - a little bit of everything, but not enough overall to fill her up. She will gobble up what she likes first and then she'll pick at - but sometimes eat - the other things because she is still hungry. If she has eaten everything or hasn't touched anything for a few mintues, I'll ask her if she wants more of whatever her favorite was.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 4:35 PM on Dec. 15, 2008

  • We have a 3 bite rule on all food. You have to try at least three bites of everything. By introducing foods over and over and enforcing a consistent rule that everything must be tried -- at EVERY sitting -- I've found it helps grow my children's palate and they aren't as picky. This gets easier as they get older and understand rules.. I would say around two and a half. We also cheer them on and praise them for taking good big bites... we say things like, "No WAY you can eat all of that XYZ..." and when they do it we look shocked and ask, "Where did the XYZ GO?" Checking under the plate, looking around confused. Our kids have fun.

    Answer by Serafyna at 5:01 PM on Dec. 15, 2008

  • Oh.. as a side note I withhold what I know they will eat/drink until they have tried the "new" food when they are younger. My son used to drink his milk at dinner and then barely touch his food... so instead of giving him everything at once I would dish out meals in order of least favorite to most favorite. Say we are having spaghetti, asparagus and bread with a cup of milk... he would get some asparagus on a plate first until it was gone. Then the spaghetti.. bread.. then milk.

    Answer by Serafyna at 5:04 PM on Dec. 15, 2008

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