Categories: Inside Nurture Life, Kids, Tips/How tos

How to Introduce Your Kids to Nurture Life’s Healthy Meals for Kids

When you’ve got picky eaters in the house, any and every meal can feel like a face-off. Nurture Life’s Kid Meals have been thoughtfully crafted to delight even the most stubborn head-shaker at the table—but as with any new food, a few intentional strategies can definitely ease the transition. Use the simple guide below to help introduce Nurture Life to your family’s table and get even your pickiest eaters on board with what’s for breakfast, lunch or dinner!

What to Order: Set Your Kids Up for Success

If you’re fortunate to have more adventurous eaters in the family, then you won’t need much advice from us on selecting the right meals for kids. Our Kid Meal menu has diverse flavors, textures and colors to excite kids of any age—from those heading off to Pre-K to those in their teen years. Each meal has been crafted with input from registered dietitians for balanced, age-appropriate nutrition from veggies, complex carbs, healthy fats and proteins. 

Your more adventurous eaters might immediately love the warm spice of our Chicken Biryani, the flavorful depth of our Chicken & Vegetable Dumplings or the hint of sweetness of our Teriyaki Salmon. But don’t worry; if you don’t have little flavor explorers at home, we’ve definitely got options for you.

Special Meals for Picky Eaters

Some of our Kid Meals are tagged as Picky Eater Favs, which means they’ve been created with picky eaters in mind. They’ll keep your kids comfortable with familiar flavors while still providing a full serving of veggies on every plate.

According to the CDC, 93% of kids in the United States aren’t getting enough vegetables, which may not be so surprising for those of us with picky eaters at the table! Nurture Life provides a healthy, veggie-filled alternative to picky eater classics—for example, by mixing cauliflower into our Mac & Cheese or blending veggies and lentils into the red sauce of our Veggie Ragout Pasta.

Of course, our Picky Eater Favs aren’t only for picky eaters, and picky eaters don’t necessarily have to stick with the specially tagged meals. All of our Kid Meals make for easy, kid-friendly dinner ideas, so there’s no bad choice on the menu.

Sample Week of Healthy Meals for Kids

Picky eater or not, we recommend ordering multiples of the same Kid Meal, so you can offer several taste exposures and gently ease your child into the new food. You’ll notice the sample order below repeats three meals two times each.

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As you build your first Nurture Life order, you can even include your kids in the process! Show them our Kid Meal Menu and get their input on which meals they’d like to try first. The more buy-in you can get from your kids, the smoother it’ll go.

Before Mealtime: Build Excitement

Before your Nurture Life box arrives, you can hype up your kids for what they’ll be eating. Talk to them about the meals that are coming, and set a fun visual cue with a weekly “menu board.” Use dry erase markers on the fridge or hang a chalkboard listing out meals for the week. You could even have your kids write the menu or decorate it, giving them a chance to look forward to their favorite meals—and to know in advance which days will include something new. (Setting expectations is a key strategy when managing picky eaters!)

When your Nurture Life package arrives, have your kids help you open the box and look at each meal before putting it in the fridge. Serving as the official box-unpacker or fridge-placer will help your kids feel involved in the meal process even before mealtime rolls around.

Nurture Life’s creative packaging can also inspire some silly, interesting and insightful conversations. Use the whimsical food friends on our meal boxes to invent fun stories or chat about food in a non-pressuring way—another helpful strategy for making picky eaters feel more relaxed.

During Mealtime: Make Your Kids Comfortable

Here are a few tips for serving Nurture Life Kid Meals in a positive, kid-friendly way:

  • Give your child choices. Allowing your picky eater some options will provide a sense of control and make them feel more comfortable, even when the meal itself feels new and scary. Instead of letting them dictate the meal served, let them choose their favorite picky eater utensils or introduce some themed plates, cups or silverware to make mealtime more fun.
  • Talk about the meals. Maintain an open conversation with your kids as they’re trying their first Nurture Life meals. Ask open-ended questions and express genuine curiosity about what your child is tasting, thinking and feeling.
  • Talk about food in general. You can also open up a conversation about what goes into healthy meals for kids. Explain how balanced nutrition—especially veggies!—are good for our bodies and give us energy to do the things we love. Instead of focusing on “bad for you” foods, try to frame it positively: “If you eat your veggies, you’ll be able to run faster on the soccer field.” (For more tips on speaking to your kids about food, check out our weight talk guide or young athlete nutrition plan.)
  • Avoid pressuring them to eat. Your child may not accept the new meal right away, and that’s totally normal. It can take 6–15 times for a kid to accept a new food—and even more for some picky eaters! As much as possible, let your child explore the meal on their own without trying to cajole them into eating or offering other food as a reward. If your child rejects it, there’s always tomorrow to try again.
  • Welcome questions. Whether they’re asking why green veggies are healthy or how Nurture Life makes their BBQ Pulled Pork, encouraging questions—and answering them honestly—will help your kids feel more knowledgeable and invested in healthy choices. If you get stuck on a question, consult the Nurture Life nutrition guide or contact our childhood nutrition experts at support@nurturelife.com.

After Mealtime: Get Your Kids’ Input

After your first order, reflect on which meals your kids loved right away and which foods may call for more exposure.

  • Rate your meals. Use Nurture Life’s meal rating feature to give feedback on your kid’s meal preferences. Rate each meal 1–5 stars and add notes based on your kid’s reaction. Don’t be afraid to ask your child directly what they liked or didn’t like!
  • Choose meals for next time. Consider getting some of your kids’ favorites from their first order while mixing in new foods to help gradually expand their palates. Trust us—even picky eaters can change their minds!
  • Order meals for the whole family. We offer healthy meals for kids of all ages and adults, too. If you’ve got multiple ages trying our meals for the first time, don’t miss our guides to introducing Finger Foods to babies and introducing Toddler Meals to toddlers.

Remember that it can take up to 15 times for picky eaters to accept a new food, so you might not see amazing success with your very first Nurture Life order. Try not to stress when your child inevitably rejects something on their plate; with some foods, there’s simply no substitute for time, patience and repeated exposure. You’re doing everything right, so just keep at it!

You can find more tips on adjusting picky eaters to Nurture Life here, or you can always contact us to ask questions or share your own favorite picky eater strategies. We love hearing from parents, so message us anytime at support@nurturelife.com.

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Lara Field

Lara has been working with Nurture Life since its inception, collaborating with the culinary team on the creation of all menus and recipes to ensure they are nutritionally appropriate and correctly proportioned for every age and stage of a child’s development and providing pediatric nutrition expertise to Nurture Life customers. Lara is the owner/founder of FEED—Forming Early Eating Decisions, a nutrition consulting practice specializing in pediatric nutrition and digestive diseases. Lara has over a decade of experience in clinical practice at two of the top ranked pediatric hospitals in the country, Lurie Children’s Hospital and University of Chicago Medical Center. Lara received her B.S. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and M.S. and dietetic internship from Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois. Lara truly enjoys the process of eating (and feeding!), from procuring the ingredients at various grocery stores and farmers markets, to organizing her pantry/refrigerator at home to make it easy to select healthy options, to preparing balanced meals with her children. Whether it be a decadent treat to a hearty, home-cooked meal, there is no greater satisfaction for Lara than enjoying food with her family.

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