Dinner Ideas for Picky Eaters

Tasty and Nutritious Dinner Ideas for Picky Eaters to Feel Full

Cooking for a picky eater is not easy. Therefore, this article also provides you with some dinner ideas for picky eaters, along with some tips to get them to enjoy different types of food.
Tastessence Staff
Last Updated: Mar 10, 2018
In today's stressful life, where there are a million things to worry about, you really have no time to worry about dinner ideas for picky eaters, as cooking for them is a daunting task. However, pleasing everyone on the table is not impossible. Also, children aren't the only picky eaters, even some adults can be very picky. It can be very frustrating for the cook of the family (almost always the mother!) to decide whether to make something they like (which is often unhealthy) or make a simple, healthy meal. But now you don't have to make this difficult choice. The following are some ideas for such eaters, which will not only ensure that you get your daily dose of nutrients, but will also get your taste buds jingling with anticipation!


Broccoli Cheese Soup: Experimenting with classic soup recipes is a great way to include vegetables that otherwise are never eaten by kids. Most kids run away from broccoli, but one of the easy ideas for children is making broccoli soup with a strong taste of cheese. Whether you tell your child about the broccoli or not is a personal choice, but by giving it a creative name, it will be a sure shot hit with your children. And the best part is, that it is very nutritious.

Chili: By including beans, onions, peppers, tomatoes, etc., chili can be a very healthy and nutritious meal. Cornbread can be served with it to make it more filling. This is one of the all time favorite recipes for troublesome kids, which is extremely easy to make.

Chicken Stir Fry: If your child loves chicken, the easiest dinner idea is making chicken stir fry with a twist, by adding snow peas, mushrooms, red peppers, etc. This is a great way to make it a more healthy recipe for dinner, and no one can complain!

Tacos: Not only children, but even adults love tacos! To make it a little more interesting, set up a taco bar with different ingredients to choose from. Instead of just chicken or beef, keep different vegetables and fish. This will make the dinner fun and interesting for everyone.

Hot Dog Quesadillas: American food includes all kinds of fast foods, with hot dogs topping the list. Try to make it a little more nutritious by making quesadillas with a filling of beans and hot dogs. Definitely something unique that kids and adults alike will enjoy.

Meatballs: Meatballs are an all time favorite. Besides the regular filling, adding mushrooms, cauliflower, etc. is a great way of including vegetables in your meatball dishes. You can keep experimenting with the sauce of the meatballs for a different taste each time.

Important Tips

Besides being creative with recipes, there are certain simple tips ,which may help you pique the interest of your fussy kid/adult, thus, instigating him into trying out your new recipe! Here are a few of those pointers:

Grocery Shopping: The first problem that you come across is grocery shopping. It can be quite challenging to buy groceries that will not go waste. The easiest solution is to include the children in this chore. By taking them to the supermarket and asking them to choose their favorite vegetables, gives them a sense of power of making decisions. They will be intrigued by the new shapes and colors, and will invariably pick out new vegetables, fruits, etc. Including the child while preparing the vegetable or fruit that he or she picked out is a sure shot way of getting him/her to eat it.

Being Creative: Another way to get children to eat something that they don't want to eat is by being a little sneaky. Okay, so being stealthy is not exactly the perfect solution, but it won't hurt them, right? Making a puree of the vegetables they don't like, or slicing and dicing all those veggies in their favorite dishes like pastas, pizzas, or even pancakes is an age-old solution (or shall I say, a trick used by almost all mothers!). It is not necessary for dinner to consist of the same, boring, repetitive dishes. Just by browsing through some magazines, you can get tons of food recipes. It is known that picky eaters will not try new recipes easily, but the key is substitution. Including their favorite ingredients in any new recipe is incentive enough for them to try it, after all, they do get bored of the same food items day in and day out.

Making Food Fun: Making food fun is important. Besides tasting good, food also has to be visually pleasing. Making the dishes attractive with the use of different colors and cuts is a added incentive for kids to try new dishes. For picky toddlers, the easiest way is to make the food fun, is by including shapes and adding colors in the food, and serving it in their favorite shaped plates.

The point here is to use your creativity, and come up with unique recipes that include the ingredients that are their favorite. However, try to avoid fast food recipes, as vegetables often lose their nutritional value when they are deep-fried. So, try to strike a balance between fried and healthy food, which will ensure that dinner will no longer be something, which picky eaters will avoid, but instead, will actually look forward to!