Looking for more ways to make mealtime more manageable? We’ve made a list of 7 simple tips to do just that (plus an extra bonus tip that gives you permission to relax)!
As parents, we often worry more about what our kids are eating and less about all of the mealtime prep, the multiple grocery trips and the time spent cooking. Managing mealtime can be difficult, especially when you barely have time to shower! So, we’ve created a list of 7 quick tips to make managing mealtimes simpler.
7 Simple Tips to Managing Mealtime
1. Make a list, Pick a day
- When writing grocery lists, think of what foods you want in your (and your baby’s) belly ahead of time!
- Try and pick meals that compliment each other. Using recipes with some of the same ingredients makes the list shorter and works great for mixing it up later in the week with leftovers!
- Pick one day a week to shop and prep any meals that have chopping or other prep work involved. (For example, chop your veggies in advance. You can even go ahead and chop extra and freeze them for use in the future!)
2. Know your “go tos”
- If you know your family loves a taco Tuesday, always have the items needed on hand for days when you need a quick, easy family fave!
- Buy the items you love in bulk!
3. One Pot Meals
- Choose meals that are cooked in one pot (e.g. crock pot, pressure cooker).
- This is not only simpler to cleanup, but typically the prep too! If we prepped ahead of time, we either throw in the ingredients in the AM and wait for that delicious smell, or at the end of the day for an under pressure, pressure cooked meal!
4. Puree for babe!
- One of the best tips I’ve gotten was to nix the salt and pepper on the veggies until they make it to my plate!
- We stick our steamed veggies in the blender and blend it up for babe, or set them aside and chop to bite size for our toddlers.
5. Leftover Day
- Pick one day, mid-to end of week to eat any leftovers.
- This is when our mixed up meals come into play! Got protein left over from one meal? Add it to your grain or veggie from another!
6. Involve the littles
- When our little ones are involved in cooking new dishes they haven’t tried, they are more likely to eat it, or at least try a taste! And you may end up finding your littles’ new favorite foods.
7. Mealtime is family time!
- Most importantly of all, sit down, taste, communicate and be in the moment.
- Be the example you want to see in your littles! Trying new foods can be intimidating, trying new things together makes it a little less stressful on our littles.
- Patience & consistency are key! No need to stress, keep a confident face when your little goes to try new things and don’t put the pressure on them.
8. BONUS TIP: The oh-so-dreaded question, “What’s for dinner?”, hits and it’s mealtime… Relax!
- There are days when we throw in a frozen pizza or chicken nuggets and that’s okay! Add some fruits and veggies to the plate and put your feet up, you deserve a break. We also love ready-to-eat meal delivery services (like Freshly) for days like this so that Mom and Dad can enjoy a quick, healthy meal too!
Got a picky eater on your hands? Check out Moms on Call’s blog on picky eaters, “Help! My Toddler Is A Picky Eater”. Follow along in the No Nonsense Toddler Book and Toddler Online Course for all of our expert advice on feeding your toddler and so much more.
What tips get you and your littles through mealtime? Share your tips on social media and tag @momsoncall!