Simple Parenting

Get Your Picky Eater to Try New Foods Using This Trick

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The Big Idea: Take your picky eater grocery shopping with you, give them a small budget and let them choose their own fruits & veggies.

Next time you head to the grocery store or farmer’s market, take your picky eater with you.

Once there, give your kiddo a $5 budget and ask them to pick out any fruits or veggies they want for the week. Encourage them to find the best deals and try any free samples. (This is also a great opportunity for bigger kids to practice their math skills!)

According to Sally Sampson, cookbook author and founder of Chop Chop Kids, and Natalie Digate Muth, a pediatrician and registered dietitian, when kids are involved in making food choices, they are usually more interested in helping cook and trying those foods. Plus, fresh, bright produce is a feast for the eyes. When foods look colorful and delicious, kids are more likely to try them.

On a recent trip to the grocery store, this led to my friend’s definitely picky daughter discovering she likes the root vegetable jicama (!)–which she now refers to as “the one that sounds like ‘Chanukah.’”

So, embrace your picky eater. Lean into their picky nature and empower them to pick!


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Ailen is the Managing Editor at ParentsTogether. She lives in Charlotte, NC with her husband and two spirited boys.