Most children hate eating fish. This results in malnutrition as they end up not eating healthy proteins and fat sufficiently.
If you are a new parent, making your child have a balanced diet can be a huge struggle. Let’s talk about eight creative ways to make your child eat fish without forcing them to.
1. Start Small
Begin by serving tiny servings of fish, such as fish sticks or baked or grilled fish. When introducing fish into a child’s diet, it’s best to start with minimal amounts to see how they react.
As some kids may be allergic to the texture or flavor of fish, beginning with little portions can help them adapt to the new diet. When your child grows more accustomed to the fish, gradually increase the amount.
While introducing new meals to your child, keep in mind their age and developmental stage, and always supervise them during meal times.
2. The Name Game:
Play the name game with your kids. Use funny or interesting names for fish so that your kid feels it is more amusing. For example, you can use ‘pink fish’ for salmon dishes, ‘shrimpy shrimp’ for shrimp salads, and the most famous ‘looney tuney’ for tuna jerky.
By giving this name, your child will find it interesting and will grow a natural curiosity for trying different kinds of fish. But if they ask you for the real names of the fish, be frank and tell them, as you don’t want to put your child in the dark. In this way, they will learn about the names of the fishes too!
3. Hide it:
If your kid refuses to eat any kind of fish repeatedly, you can hide the fish in the dishes they like.
Finely chop the fish and mix them with your kid’s favorite food. It can be pasta or fried rice, or even sandwiches as well. Just add some spices or dressing to ensure they can’t detect the smell, and you are good to go.
Combining fish with other foods can hide its texture and taste, making it more appealing to your youngster. Ensuring that the dish’s other ingredients are appropriate for your child’s age and nutritional demands is critical.
4. Make it Familiar:
To prepare the fish, use spices and seasonings your youngster is familiar with, such as garlic or lemon.
To make fish familiar and tasty for children, serve it in familiar forms, such as fish fingers or nuggets, and use similar flavors and seasonings they like. It can also be made more palatable by pairing it with familiar meals and making it fun by dipping sauces or making fish tacos.
Engaging children in the preparation and serving of fish, as well as serving as a good role model by eating it yourself, can help them acquire a liking for fish and make it a regular part of their diet.
Experimenting with new fish recipes can be an excellent approach to introducing children to various types of fish and helping them develop a liking for them. Turn fish into delightful finger food by making fish sticks or fish tacos.
Go creative with the recipes. If your child does not like the basic fish recipes, try different ways and keep experimenting until you find something your little one enjoys.
Also, it might be monotonous for your child to try the same kind of dish regularly. Trying new stuff and experimenting with new fish dishes may increase your children’s appetite.
6. Introduce Early:
Include fish in your child’s diet as early as possible to improve the likelihood that they will appreciate it.
Giving fish to your child early on can help them develop a liking for seafood and provide critical nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids.
You can introduce modest amounts of fish to their child’s diet as early as 6-8 months of age, such as pureed or mashed fish combined with other foods. It is critical to choose low-mercury seafood, such as salmon or cod, and to avoid giving raw or undercooked fish to young children.
You can help your child develop a taste for seafood and foster good eating habits by introducing fish early and progressively increasing the amount.
7. Make Seafood Visually Appealing :
Children are influenced by the sight of food, which can determine whether a child would try fish. Try various types of seafood that might pique your child’s interest.
Increase the visual appeal of your presentation and be creative. For example, you can try making fish on sticks, sautéed over spaghetti, grilled, baked in a boat, or crisped in the oven.
The “create your own” method is also popular with children. Try fish tacos served in deconstructed style for a kid-friendly variation on fish tacos.
8. Add Extra Flavor:
Most kids we know enjoy the flavor, but many parents choose bland fish out of fear of rejection rather than confidently introducing new meals and flavors to their children.
Kids enjoy food that tastes delicious, whether it’s as simple as sea salt or as sophisticated as spices or sauces. If your youngster dislikes combined or “dressed” dishes, serve sauces or seasonings on the side for dipping.
Now that you have a complete idea of how to feed your children fish, do not waste your time and try these eight creative ways to make your child eat fish. We wish you all the very best for it.