1. Introduce new food in small portions
It could be a slice of apple, or a spoonful of yogurt, or a small cube of avocado. The trick is to start small and consistent. It's easy to overwhelm our little ones, especially if you offer them a plate full of new foods. Starting small with tiny tastes will go a long way.
2. Add new food into the food they love
The trick is to add new food to a familiar food they already love and enjoy eating. Does your baby love pasta and peas? Perhaps, next time try swapping peas with carrots or broccoli on pasta. Does your baby love oatmeal and apple? Perhaps next time try swapping apple with banana on oatmeal. Do explain to them that sometimes they get to enjoy the fruit they love and other times they get to enjoy another.
3. Hungry by mealtime is good
If they're not eating much at dinner time, perhaps try skipping their afternoon snack before dinner time. They're more likely to try new food when they're hungry than when they're not so hungry.
4. Model healthy eating
You can't expect your child to try a new vegetable if you don't personally like them either. Eat together with your little ones, and chances are if they watch you eat, they'll follow.
5. Try not to push too much
Most toddlers and adults tend to push back when they are being pushed. As your little ones try to eat independently, more than anything, they will want a sense of control. So, let them decide how much they'll eat. Don't stress if they don't finish the entire plate, and don't take it personally either if they refuse. Let them have their sense of control, what and how much they want to try and finish. Chances are they might surprise you one day with what they're willing to try and eat.
6. Keep trying
Researchers have shown after 14 days, with repeated daily exposure, parents eating the same food, and rewarding non food items, positive changes takes place. Remember, it can take anywhere between 8 to 15 exposures to get your child to try new foods. Be patient. Consistency is key.
7. Get them involved in meal planning
Accomodate to your child's preference, bring them along with you to the grocery, and ask them to pick a new fruit or vegetables they would like to try. Researchers have shown kids who are involved in preparing meals have better positive attitudes towards food and are more likely to try the new food they help you prepare.