If you speak to your grandparents about how they raised their kids, you may be shocked by their stories. Smacks and belt buckles aside, mealtimes were a different ball game. We’ve all heard about the days of ‘if you don’t eat in, you can go without’. In fact, many of us have used the threat ourselves, then caved under our kid’s puppy dog stares. But, in your grandparent’s day, you said it, and stuck with it. Hence, your mum and dad may have been left to go hungry on more than one occasion.
In some advice books, this is still a recommended approach to fussy eating. ‘If they’re hungry enough, they’ll eat it,’ these harsh guides state. But, we’re going to approach the issue from a different angle.
In the modern age, it may be better to accept that we all have different tastes. You certainly shouldn’t leave a child without because they don’t like something. Of course, this has to be within reason. Some kids try it on with everything you serve. But, instead of forcing your child to eat something they genuinely dislike, it might be worth following these pointers.
Make meal planning a family affair
The chances are that you probably already follow a weekly meal planning system like the one outlined on realsimple.com. If not, you should start. And, you should invite your family to plan with you. Making this a family affair should ensure that everyone’s happy. Take each suggestion into account, and develop a meal plan your kids won’t hate. It may seem like a chore, but is it fair to serve food they have no choice in? Doing so could do nothing more than cause distress, and lead to wasted food.
Find easy ways to cook multiple meals
In some cases, you may find that you just can’t arrive at something everyone’s happy to eat. In this instance, it may be worth finding easy ways to cook multiple meals. It’s every mother’s worst nightmare. But, with proper planning, it should be easy enough. You can make meals in advance. You could even invest in something like the Wolf countertop oven to give you more cooking space. You can visit newkitchenlife.com and other sites like them to find out more about this option. Investing in kitchen timers will also help you keep on top of all your cooking times.
Know when your child is trying it on
Sometimes, those old harsh methods can still come into play. If your kids think they can get away with it, they may refuse to eat anything but their favorite meals. To make sure this doesn’t happen, take note of their reactions to certain foods. Over time, you’ll come to recognize when they really don’t like something. If they start refusing dishes containing foods they love, applying the ‘eat that or go hungry’ method could work. You can rest easy that they’ll come around eventually. And, once they’ve failed a few times, it’s unlikely they’ll try this again.
Disclosure: This is a contributed post.