Things I Got My Picky Toddler To Eat

I’ve mentioned in the past that Fern has become a pretty picky eater in recent months. It stressed me out for awhile, but I kind of let go. I figured she wouldn’t let herself starve. I try to make things I know she’ll probably eat for breakfast and lunches, and then dinner is kind of take it or leave it style. I try not to make a big deal about it, because: sanity.

Anyway, I keep trying to offer her healthy foods in new ways and recently I’ve finally found a couple of recipes that she actually likes:

Recipe #1: Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Things I Got My Picky Toddler To Eat // @ The Little Things We Do


Fern actually won’t eat many smoothies. Everyone says smoothies are a great sneaky way to get kids to eat, but usually it’s not the case for my kid. This one was a hit though – she even asked for seconds…and THIRDS!


– 2 Bananas

– 2 large handfuls of spinach

– 1 large spoonful of almond butter

– 1 large spoonful of organic canned pumpkin

– cinnamon & pumpkin pie spice to taste

– almond milk (about 1/2 cup)

– ice


-Throw everything in the blender and mix! This one is pretty self explanatory :).


Recipe #2 doesn’t have a photo, because I forgot to take one (I’ll add it later), but it’s a dinner that she asked for again for lunch the next day! Leftovers for the win! I’ll add here that Fern won’t really eat ANY meat…like none and usually even finely chopped and mixed in veggies get an upturned nose. This is huge that she ate this.

Sausage Kale Pizza Boats


– French bread baguettes (I use these City Sour Mini Baguettes)

– Hot Italian sausage (you can use a more mild variety if you’d like)

– Italian cheese blend

– 1/2 onion diced

– 4-6 cloves of garlic diced

– 1 large bunch of kale chopped

– 1 jar pizza sauce (I use this one)


– Slice baguettes in half and hollow them out by scooping the bread out leaving you with a bread shell.

– Sautee garlic and onion and then add Italian sausage. Cook until sausage is browned.

– Add the jar of pizza sauce to the sausage mixture. Then add at least half of your large bunch of kale (you can add more if you’d like – I put a ton in mine!). Stir it all together.

– Fill your bread shells with the sausage kale mixture and sprinkle some cheese on top.

– Bake in the oven at 350 for about 10 minutes…or longer if you’d like. Obviously this isn’t a science.

– Scarf!


If you have any recipes that you’ve managed to get your picky eater to enjoy, I’d love some new ideas!





  1. My daughter hates smoothies as well! I’ll have to try yours. I’ve been able to get my daughter to eat carrots and spinach when I freeze them into ice pops.

    3 Oranges – Juiced (3/4 C) (I use the fresh OJ from TJs cuz I’m too lazy to juice)
    1 Whole Banana – Sliced Up
    Secret Veggie Ingredient – Pureed Carrots (steam til tender, puree, cool before adding to mix) (At first I tried 1 carrot to see how she likes it and have increased this recipe to up to 3 carrots now without complaint!
    I also add chia seeds to this before freezing.

    I use molds like these:

    This recipe probably works better in the summer though…she loves eating ice cream when it’s hot! I’ve also tried this with pureed spinach but she def likes the carrot better

  2. I love these and I’m stealing them. 🙂 My 4-year-old is super picky, and what she loves one day, she hates the next. Super aggravating. Like you, I let her lead the way (within reason) on lunch and breakfast, and try to relax about it during dinner. Having her cook with me has helped a little (I mean, she still won’t eat half the time, but she’s excited for everyone else to eat and is not pitching a fit all through dinner). I also find that how I serve things to her makes a big difference. Sometimes I make a picture with her food, or giver her fun bowls of the individual components of dinner, and other times I just lay it out like a graze plate. I made this soup ( the other night, and though she claims to HATE soup, she really liked dipping bread into the (creamy and delicious) broth. All the chunks were left in her bowl, but she inhaled the broth. That’s a mega win at our house.

  3. Love it! Oh, yeah, anything in pizza form is aces. I recently used pizza dough to create homemade “pizza pockets” (my husband calls them calzones…tomato, to-mah-to) and I tossed some cheese, cut-up natural ham, and super chopped cooked carrots and broccoli into some pockets (with a sprinkling of onion powder and S&P) and it was a bigger hit than the pizza ones! Miraculous. 😉

    I also lurve that your recipes are super versatile (read: loose and easy!).

  4. I’m definitely trying that smoothie! My daughter has picky days & the real struggle is that she won’t eat the same thing twice in a row.

    Here are a few of her favorites:

    Zucchini Pizza Boats sans pepperoni (I think she likes that I call it a “boat” & that’s why she eats it –

    Roasted spaghetti squash with marinara & cheese “sprinkles” (parmesan). She won’t eat actual spaghetti.

    Trader Joe’s lentil soup (fresh, in the deli)

    Tortilla Pillows –


  1. […] Hoffman Tips to keep your family’s eating habits healthy – Today’s the best day means children can not resist these secret healthy foods -! The small things we do Source […]

  2. […] I’ll Learn How to mask your veggies in a yummy breakfast treat — Inspiration for Moms You’d never know this smoothie has a healthy surprise — Lauren Hartmann This brain-boosting breakfast secret is the key to all-day focus — Julie […]

Leave a Comment