Saturday, July 9, 2011

Food for Toddlers

It can be a tricky thing feeding the little ones who aren't breastfeeding as much and frankly don't seem to like to eat! This post is as much a reminder for me as it is for those of you who now have an older baby.

1. Scrambled eggs- Eggs are a good weaning food because they have many of the same vitamins and minerals that are present in breastmilk. Dr. Brewer always liked to say that an egg was like a prenatal vitamin. When babies have a picky diet, eggs are a good way to fill in nutritional gaps.

2. Beans- good protein source and easy for little fingers to pick up. My toddlers have liked black beans a lot even spooned out straight from the can without heating. When drained and rinsed they travel well too.

3. Frozen peas- I completely forgot about this one until I saw Erica F at the park with her little boy Justin and ALL of the kids were vying for his peas!

4. String cheese- It's easy and convenient. They can tear it off themselves or you can cut into little disks.

5. Rice balls!- My toddlers (and even when they get older) have always liked to eat rice balls. Just make plain white rice and scoop out with a small melon baller.  It makes it easy for them to pick up and put a nice gob into their mouths.

6. Pretzels, saltine crackers, Fritos, Lays potato chips, tortilla chips- All of these fall into the "crunchy salty carbs" category and I don't know any toddler who doesn't chomp on these items pretty frequently. Some may be surprised at my inclusion of Fritos and Lays, but when comparing nutritional content, they actually have less sodium per serving than a serving of graham crackers, with very similar nutritional content otherwise. Plus Fritos are made with "whole corn, corn oil, salt. No preservatives". That's a pretty natural food if you ask me!

7. Smoothies- a great way to get lots of good food into a yummy drink! If you make your smoothie with mixed berries you can add some frozen chopped spinach to the mixture without affecting color or flavor.

8. Waffles- I enjoy making Bisquick waffles and substituting some of the mix with oatmeal and flax seed. I add some chopped walnuts as well. These are good to make in bunches and freeze.

9. Crock pot meats- My kids are picky but they always love any meat out of the crock pot.

10. Bananas- I used to joke that my house came to a standstill without milk, juice, bread, eggs, and bananas. I'm actually not serving bananas as much these days, but it seems that the banana is a staple toddler food so I have to include it. When they start to get too soft, peel and put in the freezer to use for your smoothies.

Do you have any staple toddler foods in your home?


Andrea Harrison said...

I bought a whole bunch of freeze dried fruit from Brother's All Natural--way cheaper than the toddler snacks you can buy at the supermarket and Will loves them!

fuentes said...

This post made me feel good. I have a hard time getting Keelin to eat the meals the rest of the family eats and when she takes one bite of meat I feel like I've won a major victory. She eats either waffles with peanut butter or eggs for breakfast. The majority of the other foods mentioned are regular snack foods for her.
She won't eat crock pot meats but does eat meat loaf which baffles me.