Love it? Like it? Learning it?


Try to avoid saying that you or they hate or dislike foods when talking to children (and if you’re trying to change your own mindset!). The way we phrase things and the expression on our face can be more powerful than the taste of something when it comes to forming food preferences.

When trying something new, a bit different (Like these sprouts being a different colour), or something that is still a ‘learning it’ food I suggest always including a ‘love it’ food (something that pretty much always goes on the plate) and a couple of ‘like it’ foods (something that they’re happy to eat but will eat other things first and will leave these foods if full).

Today it’s sprouts for us. We love them but I’ve not tried purple sprouts before so they’re now a ‘learning it’ food. I’m going to steam them in with the traditional green ones for tea tonight to see if I’m a blind taste test there’s any difference (oh yes the fun we have in our house 😂). But more importantly it’s good to keep presenting foods in different ways or it’s easy to get stuck in a rut where your children are less likely to accept change. If things are always a bit different eg the shape of the carrots, or how their cooked eg steamed or roasted then they can continue to feel comfortable with accepting variety.

It’s also good to remember that just because something is left one day it doesn’t mean it’s not liked. If a child is full because they’ve eaten well during the rest of the day, they’re distracted (eg you have people over) or they need the loo (yes bowel movements can have a big impact on appetite!) then they may be less likely to eat. Just be persistent and offer again at another meal (cooked again not the unwanted leftovers from their plate!).

Just a final note about spouts… because they are one of the more bitter tastes they’re a good one to introduce early when starting solids, but you will need to cut them up finely or if soft enough mash down (I don’t like cooking them to that point!).

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