Mealtime for kids can be challenging and difficult, especially if you have picky eaters. Parents know how important eating a variety of healthy and fresh foods is to their children’s diet, but the challenge is passing this information to your children. There are a few ways to make eating healthy foods fun for your kids.

Parents can get creative when it comes to mealtime. This is one of the easiest ways to encourage your child or children to eat healthy foods. Painting breakfasts is an easy way to make kids excited for breakfast.

Make or purchase whole wheat pancakes, and have jams and spreads to be used as paint. Kids can get creative and decorate their pancake or toast before they eat it. More artistic parents can use a squeeze bottle to make pancakes in a variety of shapes and designs like Mumfie Elephant, Mickey Mouse or any cartoon character that your kids like.

You can also cut fruits, like apples and oranges, into 3D puzzles and challenge your child to solve the puzzle before they can eat it. Using these ideas can make breakfast a fun activity for your child.

Lunch is another opportunity that parents can use to encourage kids to eat healthy foods. The popularity of the Internet has made learning about other cultures more interactive and easy. For many years the Japanese have been using compartmentalized lunch boxes or Bento Boxes for packing their lunches. This concept has now hit the United States, because of the ease and practical benefits of a packed lunch.

Parents can make a simple sandwich, cut them out with cookie cutters, and make a beautiful presentation that will excite their kids, come lunchtime at school. A bento lunch allows parents to use a variety of fruits and vegetables as a backdrop for the main meal. Designs can range from simple to very elaborate, depending on your skill level. This can be total surprise for your children, or you can have them design their own lunches.

Family dinners are also an opportunity for making foods and mealtime fun for your kids. It is common knowledge that colorful and beautiful looking objects stimulate and grab a child’s attention. Using the same concept for your dinners, by plating your meals like you see at high-end restaurants, can encourage them to eat more and try new foods.

Some families create their dinners together, allowing the kids to cut up vegetables with plastic knives or tear lettuce for salads. Having them participate in the creation of the dinner will encourage them to eat. Re-naming you family recipes can also be a fun way for your children to get excited for mealtime.

These are just some ideas you can use to make mealtime fun and encourage your kids to eat healthy foods. Using the old tricks of sneaking in vegetables into your kids’ foods might still work, but giving them the right information and eating healthy by example is the best route to ensure a balanced diet and proper nutrition for your children.