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Healthy Meal Ideas for Toddlers

By Edited Oct 27, 2013 1 0

Coming up with healthy meals and snacks every day can be difficult, and it is easy to fall into a routine and give your toddler the same thing every day. While you can give your child most of the same things you eat, it is also sometimes practical to make your toddler something separately. Here are some healthy meal ideas for you and your toddler. There are also many books on the market with suggestions on easy meals for baby; I've included some of these book suggestions at the bottom of this article. If you have more ideas, please add a comment and keep the list going.

In general, you should feed many small meals to your child throughout the day. This usually includes breakfast - snack - lunch - snack - dinner. Some children may need more snacks, especially if they don't sit still and eat much at each meal. Snack times are important times to provide healthy foods to your toddler, and should be considered mini-meals. Keep in mind that toddlers need a well balanced diet that includes many different types of food.

For information on how to get a picky toddler to eat a healthy diet, check out these links:

How to Get a Picky Toddler to Eat

How to Get Your Toddler to Eat a Healthy Diet

Breakfast

  • · Scrambled eggs with or without veggies and cheese
  • · An omelet with or without veggies and cheese
  • · Waffles with fruit and/or yogurt
  • · Pancakes with fruit and/or yogurt
  • · Smoothie
  • · Toast with peanut butter, fruit puree, butter, etc
  • · Cereal with or without milk
  • · Yogurt and fruit
  • · French toast sticks
  • · Bagel with Cream Cheese
  • · Oatmeal and milk
  • · Fruit
  • · Muffins

Lunch and Dinner Ideas

I've put these two meals together because you can generally serve the same thing. In general, toddlers can eat the same thing that the rest of the family is eating. Sometimes it is nice to make something special for your child. Here are some thoughts.

  • · Breakfast foods
  • · Soup
  • · Grilled cheese (with or without veggies or meat) - you can cut these in fun sheets
  • · Toasted Cheese
  • · Quesadilla
  • · Pasta and sauce - red or pesto
  • · Macaroni and cheese
  • · Mini pizzas made with bagels, English muffins
  • · Steamed, boiled, baked, or sautéed vegetables - these can be fresh or frozen veggies
  • · Rice and stir fry
  • · Sautéed Tofu
  • · Chunks or strips of cheese
  • · Chunks of cooked meat
  • · Fish
  • · Meat Balls
  • · Cut up fruit
  • · Lasagna · Tortellini
  • · Cottage cheese
  • · Wraps - you can put veggies or anything you want inside
  • · Peanut butter and jelly (easy on the jelly)
  • · 'Salad' - A mixture of either fruits or veggies but up into a colorful salad
  • · Thing-a-mabobs - that's what my mom called them - cheese and meat wrapped up in a little roll.

Snacks

A great idea for snacks is to put a variety of snacks into an ice cube tray or muffin tin and allow your child to choose what they eat. This helps provide balance and gives your toddler some choice. You can reserve one of these spots for a special dip. Depending on what you put in the tray, it can be saved in the fridge from day to day. I also like putting snack food in a place where my kids can get to it, such as a low shelf in the fridge or in a cabinet.

  • · Any meal idea
  • · Cut up fruit
  • · Steamed Veggies
  • · Hard Boiled eggs cut into wedges
  • · Crackers with Peanut butter
  • · Crackers with cream cheese
  • · Applesauce
  • · Veggies and hummus
  • · Pretzels
  • · Guacamole and pieces of pita
  • · Cereal
  • · Muffins

Healthy Desert Ideas

Desert is perfectly fine in moderation, however not every desert had to be unhealthy. Here are some ideas of relatively healthy deserts you can offer your child.

  • · Fruit
  • · Cooked fruit with cinnamon - apples are a favorite
  • · Smoothie
  • · Bread with butter, cinnamon, and a small amount of sugar
  • · Pudding

Books

Here are some books I've come across with meal ideas for toddlers. I haven't read all of these, so I can't recommend a favorite.

First Meals by Annabel Karmel - covers from babies through school age

Toddler Café: Fast, Healthy, and Fun Ways to Feed Even the Pickiest Eater by Jennifer and Matthew Carden - 50 recipes for your toddler

The Big Book of Recipes for Babies, Toddlers and Children: 365 Quick, Easy, and Healthy Dishes by Bridget Wardley and Judy More

The Petit Appetit Cookbook: Easy Organic Recipes to Nurture your Baby and Toddler by Lisa Barnes

The Sneaky Chef: Simple Strategies for Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids Favorite Meals by Missy Chase Lapi

Superfoods: For Babies and Children by Annabel Karmel

Super Baby Food by Ruth Yaron

The list seems to go on and on


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