Toddler Recipes

by sheilamarie

Many toddlers are picky about food. Here are some fun toddler recipes to make you smile. These recipes let toddler help prepare the food and will make eating the food more fun.

Feeding a toddler can be a challenge in many homes. Little ones can be very particular about what they will eat.

Never fear! Help is at hand.

Food should never become a power struggle between you, the grown-up, and a 2-year-old! You, after all, are the gatekeeper between your child and what food is available to him or her.

Your child, however, can choose how much of what you provide is actually eaten. Variety and nutrition are the keywords. And the good habits you model won't be lost on your toddler.

Toddler Recipes for Your Little One

Sometimes Toddlers Can Be Picky Eaters

Do you have trouble getting your toddler to eat? Sometimes the same little person who demanded her bottle with shrieks will turn up her nose at the table when you offer her your lovingly prepared meal. 

Don't despair! Toddlers often go through a stage of being picky eaters. Many parents have experienced some difficulties getting their toddler to eat, so you are not alone in that area. 

There are several reasons why a toddler can sometimes refuse to eat. Although as a baby your child grew really fast, her growth may hit a plateau for a couple of months. Or maybe food is the only area in her life where she feels she has any control. She knows you get upset when she says, "Yuck!" She knows you try hard to find something that she will eat. Wow! That's a feeling of power!

If you can step back and take a deep breath, maybe you can help your little one get past this food thing without having everyone lose their cool.

Toddler Recipes: Maybe One of These Books Is Just What You Need for Ideas to Feed Your Baby

Fun Food for Toddler
The Big Book of Recipes for Babies, Toddlers & Children: 365 Quick, Easy, and Healthy Dishes

More than a cookbook, this indispensable kitchen companion not only offers delicious recipes for every day of the year, but also contains a wealth of information on child ...

$19.95  $2.98
Organically Raised: Conscious Cooking for Babies and Toddlers

A cookbook with a conscience, Organically Raised shows parents how to replace bland processed shelf staples with flavorful, pesticide-free meals that babies will love, laying ...

$21.99  $0.42
The Petit Appetit Cookbook: Easy, Organic Recipes to Nurture Your Baby and Toddler

Fresh, wholesome meals that give little mouths something to smile about... In The Petit Appetit Cookbook, mother and professional cook Lisa Barnes offers a healthy all-organic ...

$18.95  $1.15
Toddler Café: Fast, Healthy, and Fun Ways to Feed Even the Pickiest Eater

Every toddler goes through the stage where they want nothing but "O"-shaped cereal. The challenge for parents is getting kids to ask for fruit salad instead of cupcakes. Faced ...

$14.95  $1.47

Food Is Fuel for your Body

Keep Emotion Out of Fueling Up

Keep in mind that when dealing with a toddler, it's important not to let eating become a power struggle or a battle of wills. Getting emotional over your toddler's refusal to eat feeds into her negativity and only makes matters worse. 

First of all, just because she doesn't like the supper you prepared does not mean you are a bad cook or that she will not really love your meals in a year or two. Her refusal is not about you.

Second, keep in mind the purpose of food. Eating is the way we fuel our bodies. Good nutrition keeps us healthy and growing strong. A toddler needs between 1,000 and 1,400 calories a day, depending upon the child's age and activity levels. Even these numbers, however, can vary from child to child. As in so many other areas of development, there is no rigid standard on what a child of a particular age needs. Children are individuals and have their own levels of metabolism and requirements.

A third thing to think about is that you, as the parent, are in charge of which foods to offer your child. The child doesn't have an inner desire for candy or junk food. The child only knows the foods he or she has been exposed to. You are the one who determines which foods to present to the child. The child, on the other hand, is in charge of how much to actually eat. If you offer a variety of foods -- in small portions -- and vary those offerings, your child will eventually get what he needs. 

Don't worry if there are days when your child doesn't eat as much as you think he needs. He may make up for it the next day. Evaluate what he eats over the course of a week rather than day by day. You will get a more accurate picture of his nutritional input in that way.

Does Your Toddler Refuse to Eat?

Are You Worried About Your Toddler's Diet?


Feed Your Baby, Toddler, and Older Child

Organic Options
Organic Baby & Toddler Cookbook

The organic revolution is upon us -- let these fresh, modern, and inspiring sourcebooks be your guide. Fresh, additive-free natural foods are essential for the healthy ...

$15.00  $1.12
The Everything Organic Cooking for Baby and Toddler Book: 300 naturally delicious recipes to ...

Parents want the best for their children, starting with what they eat. This book includes both information and recipes so readers can educate themselves about organics and ...

$16.99  $1.66
What to Feed Your Toddler: How to Give Your Growing Child the Best of health and Vitality

All your questions answered: a one stop problem solver, plus hundreds of invaluable hints, tips and guidelines.

Only $15.00
Secrets of the Baby Whisperer for Toddlers

Unnerved by the ceaseless demands of your toddler? Concerned that your two-year-old isn’t developing on schedule? You clearly need to spend some time with Tracy Hogg. ...

$17.00  $1.99
How to Get Your Kid to Eat: But Not Too Much

Answering a multitude of questions—such as What should a parent do with a child who wants to snack continuously? How should parents deal with a young teen who has declared ...

$16.95  $3.38

When Toddler "Helps" Prepare the Food

He or She Is More Likely to Eat the Food!

Toddlers love to feel that their efforts are appreciated and enjoy helping you prepare the meal or snack. Here are some recipes that are fun and simple enough for toddler to help make.

Shake a Pudding: Put half a cup of milk and two tablespoons of instant pudding mix into two unbreakable jars with tight-fitting lids. Put on some music and dance with your child as you each shake your jars to make pudding. After the pudding has thickened, you can add the pudding to bowls, or just eat out of the jar.

Fruit and Yogurt Dip: Your child can help cut up apples or pears using a plastic knife. It doesn't really matter how the pieces look. If they are really small because your little one was very focused and diligent about cutting, you could put the pieces in a bowl and add a couple spoonfuls of yogurt. If the pieces are large, you could put the yogurt in the bowl and dip the pieces in. Either way, your child has made a tasty treat!

Trail Mix: Put a few handfuls of a favorite cold cereal in a zip lock bag. Add some raisins or other dried fruit. Shake shake shake!

Create a Scene with Your Veggies: Veggies and fruit have such varied shapes and colors! You and your child can create a scene in the mashed potatoes with broccoli trees, cherry tomato rocks and little peas as cars or people to move around them. Using your imagination and his, I'll bet you can think up even more fun ideas. Don't forget the monster that comes along to eat them all up!

Fancy Aprons Make Cooking Fun

Child's Aprons from Zazzle

Make Soup with Your Toddler

Fun to Pop in the Veggies. Fun to Stir

Ever heard the story Stone Soup? Wasn't the point that everyone became terribly interested in the concoction once they were allowed to help?

Making soup is fairly easy to do and only requires a few adjustments to include your toddler in on the process.

If you cut the onions and carrots and celery, your toddler can add them to the pot. He can stir everything up, too, as long as the pot is not yet on the stove.

Here's one soup recipe that you can make together.

Lentil Soup:

1 onion, chopped                                             2 cups lentils

2 large carrots, chopped                                    2 T olive oil

2 stalks celery, chopped                                   2 T cumin

salt to taste                                                       2-4 cloves garlic


Stir fry vegetables together in 2T olive oil in a large soup pot. Add 2 cups lentils and about 6 cups water. Let simmer until lentils are cooked soft -- at least an hour. Add water as necessary.


Have Something to Share?


More Information on Toddler Nutrition

And Toddler Recipes

Toddler Recipes
Some fun recipes your toddler can make along with tidbits of toddler nutrition wisdom.

Nutrition Guide for Toddlers
How much food does your child need? This page gives clear amounts for young children.

Nutrition Tips
Helpful advice about toddler nutrition.

Updated: 09/30/2012, sheilamarie
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?

What Bit of Advice Can You Share About Toddler Recipes?

sheilamarie on 03/22/2012

Mujjen, I agree with you that a messy kitchen is worth the benefit for the whole family when kids get involved with preparing food. My kids used to often make "concoctions" in the kitchen even as they got older. All three of them ate well and are now really good cooks.
tssfacts, those memories are priceless, aren't they?

Mujjen on 11/12/2011

When my kids were toddlers they were good eaters (still are). Maybe one reason was that I did what you said above and involved them in the preparation of the food. Sometimes it was tough, because both they and the kitchen got a bit dirty, but I think it is worth it!

Guest on 10/27/2011

I have so many fond memories of "helping" Mom in the kitchen with cooking. My brother was the fussy eater. But when he would help he did eat better than usually.

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