Preparing Your Child For Healthy Eating? Let Them Help In The Kitchen – How TUAC (Train Up A Child)

Healthy Eating is not only eating healthy meals and feeding healthy snacks to our children. It is also about how TUAC when it comes to having them help us with meals in the kitchen.


Sunflower, The Adventurous Raw Tomato Taste Tester
by Keva NE Newbold/April 20, 2017

Audrey age 3, gets a taste of raw tomatoes - TUAC Photos 2017
      Little Sunflower has always had a great appetite. She love to eat. Her day must begin with a banana. She likes to snack here and there but that never stops her from cleaning her plate during meal times. When it comes to food Sunflower is very adventurous and would try tasting any new foods before she says, “I no like it!” She love spending weekday mornings with her grandparents because she’s always learning something. They play with her a lot and she have a great time.
     Being a “lil kitchen helper” she anxiously awaits for her grandmother to go into the kitchen to fix the next meal. The minute her grandmother went into the kitchen Sunflower was just a couple steps behind her with her step stool ready to help out and learn something new. The best part she love of all was getting to “taste test” everything.”What are we fixing today Grama?” Sunflower anxiously asked.
    “Brown rice, steamed vegetables and baked salmon,” answered her grandmother.
    “Mm sounds yummy Grama,” said Sunflower smiling brightly.”What you want me to do? I’m going to help.”
    “You know your job Lil Veggie Washer. You have to wash all the vegetables in that bowl,” her grandmother said pointing to the bowl of onions, celery, green peppers and tomatoes.
     “I get to wash all of these,” Sunflower asked with a grin.
Her grandmother only laughed as she turned on the faucet. Sunflower went to washing those vegetables. She always thought it was fun. After she was through washing them all to both their satisfaction. Her grandmother chopped them all up. She mixed them all together on the cutting board. As Sunflower stood there she was curious to see all the different colors. She knew them all. She started pointing and naming each color.
    “Red, green, white,” she said. “Can I taste test one Grama?” She curiously asked.
    “Not until you ask properly, it is ‘May I taste test it please Grama,’” Her grandmother corrected.
    “May I taste test it please Grama?” Sunflower asked properly this time.
    “Yes you may taste the red one. You do know which one is red right?” Grandmother asked.
    “Urn-urn! It’s this one,” she pointed to the tomatoes. Quickly picking it up, she put it in her mouth.  “Mm, I like it Grama. I want another one, please!”

    Sunflower learned that day the proper way to ask her grandmother for something she wants and raw tomatoes taste good without salad dressing.

As frightening as it might seem, having a toddler helping in the kitchen is not as bad as you think. If you allow your toddler or younger child to help you in the kitchen her first experience would be amazing and that much memorable. Her first encounter with all that goes on and takes place in the kitchen will open her little inquisitive mind and broaden her knowledge of how her meals are prepared.  

Once you get your little one helping you in the most fascinating place in your home would change their dynamics about some of the meals you tried to get her to eat. You can watch from the corners of your eyes and would catch her, instantaneously, without asking, jamming something into her mouth before you could stop her. She may want a taste of the vegetables you just chopped up. Even while in the kitchen you will find that what she used to refuse to eat, which she was once served, she now begins to eat at her own free will. She may even abruptly start eating a variety of nutritious foods.

Introduce new foods to your child slowly by introducing a new way to whip up the same things she likes in a different style. She loves mac n cheese? Well instead of cooking it in the pot and putting on the plate,  try letting her help you make it the same way except pour it out of the pot into a baking pan, place it in the oven and  turn it into baked macaroni and cheese. She’ll not only eat it but enjoy it much more knowing she helped to make it.
Having your child help in the kitchen at a very young age you will have them eating more healthy appetizing and mouth-watering meals fuss free, meals that are all delici-O-soooo good they can’t help but to Eat-MM-Up. You will be surprise as they grow how much they will love all the foods they had once rejected.

Share with me your experiences in the kitchen with your child or grandchild, along with a picture. With your permission I will post it.

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