Monday, 10 August 2015

Baby's Own Health: Toddler Food

From fun purees and messy faces, to the delicate balancing act that is eating Cheerios, discovering food is as fun for parents as it is for baby. At some point, however, individual taste begins to emerge and the act of defiance becomes a part of your little one testing their boundaries. Picking meals that are balanced, nutritious, and not on the floor, can be a chore.  Of course, your own taste are also a factor. Maybe you have dietary restrictions for health or ethical reasons. Maybe certain foods have an "ick" factor for you, that might not be true for your son or daughter. I'm writing a blog about what to feed a toddler, mostly because I'm trying to figure out what to feed my toddler. Experimentation is the name of the game, and here are 3 fun ways to "try out" some fun toddler meals!

Crescent Wraps

Wrap anything around anything and a toddler is at least curious. These finger foods are a great way to get creative with any number of delicious combos, such as these enticing Parmesan and Spinach Twists from Little Grazers.  Why not try ham and cheese baked up in the crescent roll, or cream cheese and salsa pinwheels on a tortilla! Make a batch, so that if it's a winner, you can grab a few in a pinch. No takers? Well, throw it in your lunch bag for your own meal! Win, win.

Oodles of Noodles

Food can be fun as well as filling. If you have time to be messy, let them get their fingers in a pile of noodles! It's a good way to practice those pincer grasp skills at the next level, with the added challenges of sauce and cheese! It doesn't have to be all about the carbs either - pasta is a great way to hide some produce, or even gain it some approval. Try a scratch spin on the classics like tuna noodle casserol, mac n' cheese, or these fun Homemade Spaghettios!

Mini Muffins

Both sweet and savoury muffins are a great way to make a portable meal to take to the park or to quickly munch on when time is short. If you're thinking breakfast, add rolled oats and yogurt for added nutritional punch. Cut the sugar and the fat by substituting your butter with apple sauce, or by adding a mashed banana for a cakey texture (always a toddler fave.) 

Don't limit yourself to batter either - meatloaf muffins, mini quiche with ham and cheese, macaroni cakes with cauliflower, or try these healthy quinoa bites! I'm thinking these would be great at a potluck buffet or as a side dish for the whole family! If seeing the veggies is a problem, puree them nice and smooth before adding them.

Have you got some great ideas for meal time? Have some trick for snacks on the go? Tell us on Facebook and join the conversation!

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