Full disclosure: I have a two-year-old, and just because I have a registered dietitian credential behind my name, that does NOT mean he always eats healthy. He loves cookies and goldfish just like the next kid! However, I do try my hardest to expose my son to a variety of foods. Whether he always eats those foods is a different story, ha! As I’m sure most of you can relate, kids can be picky eaters (just like adults can be picky eaters), but exposure is key! One way that I try to do this is by sending balanced lunches to his pre-school. Kids also tend to be social eaters, so they are more likely to try something new while eating with you or with their friends. As a working mom, I don’t have time to prepare a balanced lunch every night, so I pick an hour time slot each weekend to meal prep these lunches. I use sectioned containers so the food stays separated, and it works beautifully. You can purchase these particular containers through Amazon.com.
This week’s lunches include:
- 2 oz grilled teriyaki chicken tenderloin (grilled ahead of time, in bulk)
- 3 sliced strawberries
- 1/4-1/2 cup “PicSweet” spring vegetables topped with pepper and low-fat parmesan cheese
- 1 applesauce pouch
And here’s the best part: You can do this type of prepping for yourself as well! The lunches that I prepare for my two-year-old are tasty meals that adults can enjoy too (but you might want to sub out the applesauce pouch for a real apple). If you have had weight loss surgery, these portions are also perfect, and the focus is on the “P’s” (protein and produce), which we love!
Amanda and Molly are the MUSC Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery Program Registered Dietitians. With 15+ years of experience combined, they facilitate behavior change through nutrition counseling for weight loss and maintenance with children through adults.