Trying new foods can be a challenge when you’ve got a finicky eater at your table, which is why many parents rely on sneaking in fruits and veggies. Why you shouldn’t.
When your finicky eater refuses to try new vegetables and fruits (or eat anything beyond a narrow stable of wholesome foods) it can be tempting to sneak nutrient-dense foods into other dishes in an attempt to give their diet a healthy boost. But sneaking foods is counterproductive.
To develop lifelong healthy eating habits, kids (and adults) need to know what is in their food. This begins at the family table, by knowing exactly what is in the food that is on the table. Beyond developing the healthy habit of knowing what they are eating, tricking kids into tasting does nothing to build the all-important feeling of trust that you’re trying to foster at your family table.
What about kids who absolutely refuse to try something new? Remember, the lifelong learning you’re after is in the experience of exploring and cooking wholesome food together. If your kids have participated in bringing that recipe to the table, they will have learned something immensely valuable from the experience of cooking together with you. In time, they will come to taste those foods on their own terms. And when they do, the reward will be that much sweeter because you empowered them to make their own healthy choices.