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Friday, March 9, 2012

Juneberry Baby: DIY Nibble Tray for the Pickiest Little Toddler Eaters!

I have the sweetest rascal of a toddler boy...nearly 20 months old and a real stinker when it comes to meal time!  I had so many dreams of all of the lovely creations I would whip up to feed him...and it turns out he had other plans in mind!

That is why I am going to step outside of the box a bit with a different kind of tutorial.  One that is quick, easy, and a little bit genius in that even the choosiest little tyke can find something to enjoy!  So thank you, thank you, thank you to On to Baby for sharing this divinely simple way to add a little fun to our typical food-time frenzy!

Step 1: Find the Compartment Tray
The easiest answer is to grab your standard ice cube tray. If you don’t have one or want to get a little more creative, try something like a simple paint palette. We hear muffin tins also make a great choice. We picked up a few white paint palettes at the local Michaels and we were ready to go! There are also some pretty cool ice cube trays out there (who knew?), like this hexagon one we found at organize.com.

Step 2: Pick out the food, and prep it!
We recommend picking foods that are bright, colorful, and easy to eat with little hands. Choosing foods that will last a bit if sitting out is also a good idea. The idea of the nibble tray is that you can leave it out for your picky eater to graze as he or she desires. Obviously choosing foods you know your little one enjoys is smart, but don’t be afraid to mix some new choices in with the steady favorites.

Step 3: Arrange the food in the tray.
Listen, we told you this was easy! Just take the ready-to-eat food you prepped in step 2, and fill all of your compartments.

Step 4: For extra credit or special treat, add a dipping option!
This is optional, but it can make your tray that much more enticing for your toddler. Kids typically love to dip foods! We created homemade whipped cream for ours (google it, it’s surprisingly quick and easy!), and also provided a dollop of peanut butter. Other options could include cream cheese, yogurt, cottage cheese, or a pureed fruit or vegetable, depending on what other food choices you are serving.

Step 5: Serve!
Now it’s time to present your thoughtful mini feast to your little one. Leave the tray in an easy-to-access spot, so he or she can graze over time.

I love this fun option from Dr. Sears!  You can find it HERE . . .

Or an ice cube tray will work just fine . . .

Muffin tins will do the trick too!

Aha! At last a solution to keep my feisty little guy entertained, happy, and, best yet, FED!  Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!! Photobucket

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