I’m 26 years old and not ashamed of having been a picky eater most of my life, but I give myself credit for actually trying foods before saying I don’t like them… for instance today while I was at my mothers house she was eating Brussels Sprouts. I’d never had them before and I’ll tell you right now, I’ll never have them again. I couldn’t even force myself to finish chewing, let alone swallow the darn thing. I couldn’t see how people actually enjoyed them, yet her and my husband kept popping them in their mouth. Gross.
We don’t raise picky eaters… at least in the sense that we make them try something at least once or twice before making a final decision. We don’t let them say they don’t like something having never tried it and then allow them to refuse to eat it forever. After trying it we’ll go a while, a few months or so, before we’ll introduce it again, because surprisingly in some cases they end up liking it. I’ll give an example in just a bit.
My oldest (10 years old) eats onions raw and cooked, she eats corn,lettuce, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, green beans, asparagus, beans, celery, cucumber, pickles, she eats raw bell peppers, carrots, broccoli, and more. So far there hasn’t been many vegetables (that we eat often) that she hasn’t ended up liking after trying them. Some of the ones she doesn’t like are zucchini, tomatoes or peas. Plus side, she likes every fruit we’ve put in front of her.
My oldest son (7 years old) likes potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, cucumbers, and beans. He’s been working on trying more things like bell peppers, zucchini, asparagus, squash and onions. He doesn’t like lettuce (except for salad), corn (except corn on the cob), carrots, broccoli, tomatoes, peas or green beans either. He’ll also eat every fruit put in front of him.
My middle son (5 years old) loves corn, grape tomatoes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pickles, cucumbers, carrots, broccoli, beans, celery. So far not a fan of peas, asparagus, onions, peppers, squash, lettuce (except a salad) or zucchini. He will eat all fruits.
My youngest daughter (4 years old) likes corn, lettuce, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pickles, cucumbers, carrots, broccoli, beans, celery. She does not like tomatoes, peas, asparagus, onions, peppers, squash, or zucchini. She’s a big fan of fruits of course.
My youngest son (almost 3 years old) loves pretty much all foods put in front of him. He will eat anything. He’ll eat onions, lettuce, tomatoes, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, green beans, asparagus, beans, celery, cucumber, pickles, peas, peppers, carrots, broccoli, and more. He devours all fruits put in front of him, when he was littler he didn’t like the texture of blueberries, but he’s gotten over that.
The tricky part is getting all the plates ready at dinner. My husband and I juggle the who doesn’t want what and who will eat what to decode the algorithm for who gets what portions and of what foods. It’s entertaining though in a way.
Like I mentioned a little above, the kids have tried many varieties of veggies (both raw and cooked versions) over time. We’ve learned what they’ll eat and what they won’t (for now). Sometimes they will ask to try something again on their own and sometimes we’ll just have them try something again to be sure they don’t end up really wanting it on their plate at dinner. In many cases they ended up liking it after a 4th or 5th attempt versus the first few tries. Pickles being one of those feats. We had 3 kids that would not finishing eating a pickle after the first bite and now they can’t get enough. My husband and I eat a lot of fresh vegetables & fruits throughout the day as healthy snack choices, the kids love it too so they gnaw on them along side us.
I think trying new things is beneficial and I wish my parents had been more enforcing when it came to trying foods as a child because I probably would end up liking more things today. For the past 9 years of my life I’ve been a firm believer in trying something before concluding distaste indefinitely. To the point where even if it’s prepared a different way, I’ll try it again. I’ve surprised myself with the things I did really end up liking. The kids are the same way, they will truly think they won’t like something because of the way it looks, sounds (the name) or smell… but then they end up loving it and not getting enough. It’s struck such an interest in them that they wanted to grow their own vegetables in our garden. So far we’re rooting potatoes, we have 4 tomato plants, and we’ve planted corn and peppers. We also have 2 berry bushes and have planted watermelons. Hoping that all that has successful growth. We’re looking forward to having our own fresh grown food for the table and plan on creating a better vegetable garden next year.