A Kid-Friendly Approach to Introducing New Foods

A Kid-Friendly Approach to Introducing New Foods

We can all be menu-blind or stuck in a rut, serving the same things over and over. Here's how to get out of the rut and introduce new foods in a way kids won't even notice.

The solution? We're NOT saying to serve all new foods every day. We ARE saying using a variety of kid-friendly whole foods is best and adding in new foods in moderation will help kids accept new foods.

1. Serve New Foods as an Extra in Tiny Quantities

You can always serve a tiny amount of new food as an extra (not a big enough quantity to be creditable). This makes one package of a new food stretch a really long way, reduces waste, and gives kids multiple exposures to the food during a week! And be sure you're serving a full quantity of something you already know they like!

2. Try a Theme

This capitalizes on the previous tip. Set up a charcuterie board style meal or snack with a specific theme. For example, have a "green food" meal (perhaps on St. Patrick's Day) where there are several green foods they DO like, and a few new ones so they can sample them all (ex. spinach pasta, pesto, green bell peppers, green smoothie, kiwi, guacamole, green tortilla chips, grapes, celery, green apple, etc.).

3. Try Seasonal Foods

Many of our home daycare provider customers do seasonal activities and adding in a little food sampling is a great thing to add! This could look like going to a pumpkin patch then roasting some of the pumpkins to try, creating a dish from a favorite Christmas movie (maybe not the infamous choices of Kevin from Home Alone or Buddy from Elf 🤦‍♀️😂), or making fruit juice dyed Easter Eggs in the Spring.

4. CACFP Best Practices Can Get Your Juices Flowing

The best practices can be a good place to start to get your juices flowing (you can find them here). They show a realistic (and healthy) variety of foods that are creditable to serve!



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