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My Subscription Addiction
My Subscription Addiction

How to Raise a Junior Foodie

Gennifer Rose
ByGennifer RoseJun 6, 2022In partnership with Little Spoon

Not to sound too conceited but I consider myself to be a true foodie and adventurous eater, I’m always in search of new cuisines and flavors to try out. I especially love fresh and healthy vegetable-based dishes! My husband on the other hand is the complete opposite. He’s extremely hesitant to try anything new and gravitates towards junk food and sugary sweets. Picture a picky toddler trapped in the body of a 40-year-old man (sigh!).

So when our daughter was born, I was determined to make her into a foodie like me. Well, her genetics had other plans. It was very clear from the beginning that getting her to try new foods and flavors was going to be a big challenge. Anything that looked or tasted even remotely like a vegetable or meat she would immediately reject, often before she even tasted it.

How to Avoid a Picky Eater

I did as much research as I could about picky food problem-solving brands (like Little Spoon!) which help with tastebud/palate training and help babies develop healthy eating habits. It turns out, that the beginning period of introducing solids between 6 - 12 months old is a critical time for introducing a variety of foods, especially bitter foods like earthy vegetables. I quickly saw Little Spoon’s focus on variety in their baby food— their Babyblends can be started as early as 4 months old to supplement bottle feedings and the line is built to grow with your little one as they enter each new stage. Get them started early on their little foodie journey!

Quality Nutrition with Zero Prep

Modern baby food brands like Little Spoon don’t just focus on quality nutrition + ingredients— Little Spoon also knows the struggle is real for us working parents. We simply don’t have any extra minutes left in our day to tackle home-cooked meals every single night, but of course, we still want the best for our little ones. The Little Spoon subscription service of cold-pressed baby food and toddler meals fits perfectly into our busy schedules and they’ve made everything extremely flexible to shift, pause, cancel, etc. Their fresh pre-made meals come super chilled inside insulated packages right to my doorstep to either pop in the fridge or freezer. There’s no grocery shopping required or kitchen prep. They are literally ready to go and just require a quick heating in the microwave.

Hard-to-Find Unique Ingredients

Our family has grown, my daughter is currently 4-years-old and our son is 14 months old. Now that I’m a more experienced parent the second time around, I feel confident in introducing new foods—especially knowing that bold flavors, unique ingredients, and different textures help set up a future foodie. My husband thought I was crazy when I started feeding my son spices and crazy-sounding ingredients at 6 months. But guess what, he loved it! He’s also had an enormous variety of vegetables, legumes, seeds, and healthy plant oils - all before his first birthday.

Little Spoon offers both hard-to-find unique ingredients as well as traditional baby food blends with nutrient-packed ingredients such as beets, hemp, chia seeds, kale, spirulina, and many more!

I look back on my daughter’s feeding journey and wish I had integrated more variety into her diet early on. Now that my son has a lot more teeth and is self-feeding finger foods, I can pretty much present him with any new food and he’s willing to at least give it a try. Such a difference from my 4-year-old! Unfortunately, my toddler daughter is still very picky with her food choices and it takes several attempts to get her to try something new, but she consistently loves Little Spoon Smoothies and their Mac + Cheese (with a secret vegetable-based sauce, I might add).

My Number One Mommy Hack for Mealtimes

One of my mommy hacks for dealing with a picky eater toddler is my rule: “Always give them options and one guaranteed win on their plate.” When I’m putting a meal together for my 4-year-old, I usually verbally ask her to pick one from three food items. For example: “Scout, do you want a string cheese, strawberries, or apple?” She’ll pick the one she definitely wants and I’ll put a small amount on her plate. Then I add three more healthy food choices on that same plate that she may or may not be willing to eat. She’ll always eat her favorite “win food” first and then ask me for more. I tell her that she needs to take bites from other foods on her plate before she gets any more. More often than not she will at least try to eat something else. There’s usually at least one food that will go untouched and that’s okay. Try this trick with your toddler, you’ll be amazed and how well it works!