Anyone who has a toddler knows how difficult it is to get them to eat a nutritious meal. You try everything in your power to follow the rules of the book: introducing one veggie at a time, providing a variety of options and then reintroducing veggies that were previously rejected. You may even consider masking the flavor of healthy snacks on occasion.
But many times even the best tricks of the trade don’t work. You end up giving them anything they’ll eat…even if it is just a grilled cheese sandwich, chicken nuggets or (gulp), bread rolls. Not that that’s a bad thing. Sometimes you just have to be glad your kid is even eating!
My little guy is no different. He’s been a very picky eater from the get-go…even suffering from mild anemia for a while. It made me question where I went wrong.
Then it hit me. Why don’t I just try a homemade spinach pizza?! Not only is it tasty, but I can sneak in an iron-rich veggie! So that’s what I did. And to my surprise, he really enjoyed it!! Sometimes the answers are right in front of you and you miss them when searching too hard.
(I know I can’t give a growing toddler pizza every day, but once in a while, it certainly makes life easier!)
Below is the spinach pizza recipe I used.
|Toddler-Approved Spinach Pizza
- Olive Oil No-Stick Cooking Spray
- 1 pkg (9 oz each) baby spinach leaves
- 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided
- 3/4 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 prebaked thin pizza crust (12-inch)
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- Mix 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, ricotta cheese and Parmesan cheese in small bowl until blended; set aside.
- Place crust on baking sheet; spray with cooking spray. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese over crust; top with spinach. Spoon cheese mixture evenly over pizza. (Spinach will not be covered completely.)
- Bake 15 minutes or until cheese is starting to brown. Cut into 4 slices to serve.
I realize that this pickiness is just a stage and one day this too shall pass.
In the meantime, I have just resorted to giving the little guy flavor-full foods which he enjoys and making sure to include a little bit of veggies on top when possible. It doesn’t always work, but little by little is the goal. I also try to share the same food he eats, so I can lead by example. When he sees mommy eating it then he typically wants it too!
Do you have a picky eater at home? What, if anything, has helped?
Ana, a mom to three rambunctious little boys, has supported hundreds of thousands of women throughout their pregnancy and motherhood journey since 2012 as a blogger and maternal health advocate at MommysBundle.com.