What I Feed my Child (with Recipe Ideas)

I, not surprisingly, end up in conversations about food and kids. What will the child eat, what will they not eat, how do they experience new things. It’s such a heavy thing for parents because we want to do right by our child but it’s not easy (especially as they develop their own palate).

For example, my son proclaimed that sweet potatoes taste like garbage (his exact words) and that the pasta I made last night tasted rotten. I’ve learned to accept this and work with what he does like, which luckily is quite a bit.

I will also say, I never try to hide vegetables. He knows what we’re eating and understands the raw/cooked forms. The only time I hide vegetables is when I’m trying to sneak winter squash past my husband. We try and keep excited. Vegetables are always a part of our meals.

One of the things I felt best suited us is that he eats what we eat and I require that he at least try it. If he takes a bite and chews it, I know he liked it (contrary to his words). If he wants to spit it out, I know he really didn’t like it. Over the years, I’ve found a few general recipes that I know will almost always be a hit (with really any kind of vegetable). I live by the idea that it doesn’t pay to push and that persistence helps.

I will also say, if you’re really looking into the world of feeding tiny humans, Sara from The Sprouted Kitchen is wonderful and has a few posts on this that can be found in her recipe section under ‘feeding babies.’ Pop over there and check that out as well.

Enchiladas/Tacos/Quesadillas

I love this medium. There’s cheese, there’s an easy way to add protein (beans), and the vegetable variations are endless. I’m stuffing the enchiladas with greens and roasted vegetables while the quesadillas are the perfect for finely diced vegetables and beans.

Recipes:

Spinach Quinoa Cakes with Garlicky Yogurt | Naturally Ella

Fritters

Handheld food! What child can resist something they can eat with their fingers with messy dip? Best of all, fritters are an easy win for everyone in the family and I’ve found ways to make them year-round. We usually use hummus or yogurt sauce as a dip and combine it with a salad (or sliced vegetables for my son). Also, leftovers pack great the next day for lunch!

Recipes:

Bulgur Vegetarian Chili

Soups/Chili

This one surprised me a bit but my son loves soup, especially tomato soup and chili. With the weather turning a bit cooler, I’m excited for weekly soup dinners. I keep the soups kind of mild but still add in spices where I can (this lentil stew is a surprising hit but it helps he gets excited about cinnamon!) Get a bit of crusty bread and you’re good to go!

Recipes:

Spicy Peanut Sauce with Brown Rice Noodles and Veg | @naturallyella

Noodles

It’s probably no surprise that pasta can be an easy win. I go heavy on the vegetables and always pair the pasta with salad. I like to mix up the sauces and occasionally I’ll add a handful of chickpeas to the dish, just to help bulk up on protein.

Recipes:

Risottos

The surprising one: risottos are like creamy pasta (at least that’s what I tell my son). Similar to pasta, a risotto is a great way to eat whole grains and tons of vegetables. Play around with cheese or take it vegan with the help of sunflower cream.

Recipes:

Halloumi Burrito Bowl with Roasted Potatoes | Naturally Ella

Halloumi

Finally, there’s always fried cheese. An easy way to please the whole family, halloumi is eaten quite a bite in our home. There’s tacos, there’s skewers, there’s burrito bowls- how can you not love it?

Recipes:

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