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Dinner with Toddler

Posted by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 7:11 AM
  • 9 Replies

Does your toddler eat what you cook for the family dinner? Or do you make a separate meal?

I like making a lot of different dishes, including exotic or ethnic ones. DD tends to dislike those, but I'd like to expand her palette. I'm just wondering what your dinner routine is and what you do to get your toddler to EAT.

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 7:11 AM
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by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 7:14 AM

We don't give the kids anything else to eat other than what we are eating. I think it has taught them that dinner and other meals are just that. I do try to make at least one thing with the meal that I know they will definitely eat, that way they eat at least something.

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 8:59 AM

I cook new recipies all the time italian, mexican, asian, different soups. I always give my kids what we are eating. Most of the time they like it.

My middle child is the pickiest and he has learned that Im not gonna hop up and offer chicken nuggets becasue he doesnt like what I cooked, so he generally eat. I do however let them choose what they have for breakfast and lunch.

Dinner takes time to make and I cook for our family so we can eat together like a family. To each their own but I strongly believe that we teach our children how to treat us and what are we teaching them if we are offering up a buffet at dinner trying to please everyone at the table. I feel like I can take my kids to eat anywhere and they will be respectful to other people and appreciate that there is actually food in front of them.

Sorry for the rant, you dont have to agree, we are all different :)


by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 10:29 AM

Boy have we had the discussion over and over on this site. It just shocks me that some parents force children to eat what they eat. I could not imagine.

So here is what we do. If I make spicy Indian, which we do about once a week. I put chicken, zucchini, mushrooms and potatoes in it. I use all of those things and put them on our son's plate (he is 4 years old) and I put some ranch dressing next to his chicken (I might have to make or broil his chicken). He doesn't like potatoes, but I put one or two .  We tell him that is his dinner if he eats most of it and tries the potatoes then he gets a treat.

This works for us, I don't make multiple meals and we all eat the same.

I would hate for anyone to tell me I had to eat something I hated. We don't make it a fight, we just adjust the meal. Then we are all happy.

Some nights it a little more tricky, but I make it work. He always have a fruit, meat and other.


Hope this helps

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 10:35 AM

We have our meals, and then my kids have theirs. They eat virtually the same thing, it's just changed up a bit. (like if we have chicken for dinner, I'll make theres look like chicken nuggets). They don't fight with me over it when I make it more like something they want to eat, or make it something fun. Some things I cook they wont eat, nor would I give them (like really spicy foods) So I give them something else. If they don't want to eat what we are eating then they can eat a pb & j or nothing. (My SO's parents used to have that rule so now we do too - but ive rarely had them decide to take the pb &j, and theyve never wanted nothing!). All in all I don't mind cooking something else for the kids either though, depends on the night and what we are having. I want my kids to eat so I always try to make food for them they will eat.

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 10:41 AM

Each meal I make sure has something that everyone will like - my DH will eat about anything, I am slightly picky and my DD it is hit and miss. The rule is my DD has to eat one good bite of everything on her plate. She has to eat all of her vegeys and she usually has some kind of pasta (her favorite) she can have as much pasta as she wants once her vegeys are eatten (2 servings) and she has at least tried anything new.

I know that it can take as many as12 taste before she likes a food so I don't force anything and if she does decide she truly doesn't like something after trying it quiet a few times I won't force her. I just make sure for those meals she has something she does like.

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 10:49 AM

For my oldest, he doesn't like much so we always have him at least try whatever I make. I made the mistake of giving him whatever he liked when he was younger (he's almost 4 now) and it's biting me in the ass big time now. But with the youngest, I give him whatever we eat unless it's spicy and he gobbles pretty much anything.

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 12:44 PM

He eats what we eat. If I make something new he HAS to eat at least one bite. If he chews and swallows one bite and then doesn't like it, he doesn't have to eat it. But I think that's only happened one time lol. Our big thing with him is he's not much of a meat-eater. So when we have dinner we eat the protein first and leave the sides/veggies on the stove- don't even bring them to the table where he can see. We all eat the meat, and after he's eaten a certain amount of meat where we feel it's enough, then we all eat the sides. We've been doing this for a few months and it's been working out great!

by on Dec. 9, 2010 at 1:07 PM

Sometimes, depends on what it is. Usually if he doesn't eat it, he will just have to go to bed without. But last night I was a softy. He woke up and he was hungry and  he still wouldn't eat what I had made, so I gave him cereal. That rarely happens though.

Edit: If it's something I know he will absolutely not touch (maybe something spicy), I will make him something else. I never force him to eat anything, but I do want him to at least try it. I try to encourage him to take at least one bite.

by Bronze Member on Dec. 9, 2010 at 1:15 PM

My DD is 3 1/2 and while she isn't really "picky" there are things that she has never liked, even as a baby. I normally put at least a little of what we're eating on her plate, then I add things I know she'll eat like strawberries, peas, blueberries, etc. She eats whatever she wants off the plate and that's that, we don't force her to eat anything she doesn't want to(except she has to eat at least one bite of each vegetable). She has never liked meat, not even as a baby, never has liked meat, it makes her gag(except chicken nuggets at mcdonalds and every now and again fish sticks lol) so we don't really force her to eat it. If I make something I know for sure she's not going to eat or I don't want to give her like something spicy or chili or something, I'll make her a sandwich or something instead 

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