food ideas for kids

30 Healthy and Simple Food Ideas for Kids: Babies, Toddlers, and Pre-Schoolers

food ideas for kids
Healthy and Simple Food Ideas For Kids

When growing up, most kids have their own tastes and food preference. However, their preferences sometimes make us scratch our heads. I didn’t want to serve the buttered noodles again and again to my beloved ones. So, I need some inspiration for healthy food ideas for kids with simple ingredients and easy cooking steps. 

Fortunately, I got 30 healthy and simple food ideas for kids, including babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers, and older. The kid-approved recipes are simple and easy to make in less than 30 minutes. The kid-friendly meals include from nutrient-packed treats to flavorful, healthy dishes.

What to make for kids that are picky eaters?

I go with a small amount of food but offer big benefits to deal with picky eaters. The hidden-veggie foods like beet hummus, popsicles, or meatballs are a perfect solution to serve. I also combine some foods if necessary. 

I know that introducing new foods to the little ones takes time. That is why I choose the right timing before trying a new food for my kids. Sometimes, I also give them a description of the new food, especially the taste and the texture. 

What to give a child that does not want to eat?

When my child eats only in small amounts or refuses to eat at all, I try to offer new food. I can take more than 10 tries to make my little ones familiar with the foods. I will give them the other treats if they consistently refuse to eat.

Smoothies with hidden veggies are good for fulfilling the kid’s nutrients. They can for easy the nutritious drink. When it comes to smoothies, there are lots of diverse recipes based on the preference. The hidden-veggie popsicles are also perfect to deal with the picky eaters.    

What is a healthy menu for kids?

I choose healthy foods containing the needed nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats. These nutrients can be found in many food ideas for kids, including banana pancakes, chicken parmesan meatballs, broccoli egg muffins, and more. 

I focus on nutrient-dense foods because they will influence their growth and reduce overall calories. I try to limit the foods containing added sugar like honey, corn syrup, drink juice, and saturated fats like hamburgers, hot dogs, sandwiches, pizza, and salt.

What is usually on a kids meal?

I try to include essential nutrients, including carbs, protein, vitamins, minerals, and fat, in a kid’s meal for a healthy diet. These nutrients can be found in the hands-on ingredients, including vegetables, fruits, bread, ground chicken, egg, peanuts, milk, oat, and others.

I combine the selected ingredients to make simple and healthy foods like baked seasoned chicken tenders, tomato soup with cheesy bread, avocado tuna salad, and more.  I also limit the foods containing the saturated fats, like hot dogs, hamburgers, fried chicken, French fries, and more.  

Healthy Food ideas for babies

1. Banana Pancakes

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@A Baking Journey)

Banana pancakes are great options for parents. The food idea is a quick and easy breakfast, lunch, or snack for your babies. With only three ingredients banana, flour, and egg, I make soft, fluffy, and perfect pancakes for my babies. The healthy and easy pancake recipe is made in less than 10 minutes. The banana pancakes are great whether I serve the food for on-the-go park adventures, breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

2. Taco for Baby

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

Taco for the baby belongs to great food ideas for kids. The foods are perfect for babies, whether in the finger food stage or baby-led weaning. The food idea is ideal for 9+ months and up. The mini-sized meal is filled with my preferred taco flavors. Best of all, I can make taco food for the whole family. The healthy meal also includes veggies, healthy fats, and protein inside. My babies sometimes are picky eaters, so taco for babies is my best solution.

3. Broccoli Egg Muffin

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@The Gourmet RD)

Broccoli Egg Cups are my favorite for an on-the-go breakfast. The food is an excellent option for my little ones and is filled with dense broccoli, shredded cheddar cheese, milk, and eggs. I serve both warm and cold for breakfast or morning play dates. With the hectic time and little preparation, I can make these egg muffins with 4 simple ingredients. The baby food pack nutrients and flavors in the cups. The foods are great for finger-food babies to 9-month babies and older.

4. Easy-Peasy Veggie Pasta

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I love cooking veggie pasta for my baby. The easy-peasy veggie pasta belongs to a flavorful and nutritious meal for the finger food stage of baby-led weaning. For the veggies, I use a mixture of 5 different veggies, including chopped green beans, carrots, frozen corn, and red peppers. However, you can personalize the healthy recipe based on your baby’s preference. The reason why I love cooking baby food is that customizable for pasta and veggies, great for growing babes, and is a perfect recipe for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

5. Veggie Fried Rice

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

Veggie fried rice is always my favorite because of its super simple recipe. Of course, it is also a healthy and flavorful meal for babies. The food contains a ton of flavor, protein, and veggies. I also serve the food for my whole family. The food is also great, whether for baby-led weaning or the finger food stage. I made the healthy version of the popular food filled with rice, a scrambled egg, and 5 vegetables, including corn, carrots, peas, edamame, and pepper.  

6. Curry Pasta Salad

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I delight my baby’s growing taste by serving curry pasta salad. The food is perfect for introducing a tasty mild curry to my little ones. I toss small sizes of broccoli, pasta, cut chickpeas, and carrots dressed in mild and creamy curry sauce. The sauce is made with 7 simple ingredients, including yogurt, a mild curry powder, apple cider vinegar, ginger, garlic, and turmeric. No worry! The flavorful salad brings your babies to the next level of the dinner experience.

7. Cottage Cheese + Fruit Bowl

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I choose cottage cheese and fruit bowls for a simple and fast breakfast for my baby. I can make a super simple recipe in less than 10 minutes. The soft texture of cottage cheese makes my baby easy to eat. The healthy meal is filled with chopped fruit, whole-fat cottage cheese, and a sprinkle of cinnamon. The simple food is great for the baby’s growth and contains calcium, protein, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. I serve as a snack or breakfast menu.    

8. Spiced Blender Pancakes

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

In the hectic morning, I make spiced blender pancakes. The food is fully made in a blender and takes less than 5 minutes for prep time. The sugar-free meal is filled with one banana, wholesome oat, almond milk, and warming spices. With 5 simple ingredients, I can make the best pancakes containing complete nutrients. The gluten-free food is great for babies, toddlers, and even the whole family. The breakfast is also customizable on your baby’s preference.

9. Beet Hummus with hidden veggies

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

The Beet hummus is also my lunch option for my baby. The food is filled with hidden veggies and simple ingredients. Whether I serve this healthy dish with chopped veggies or some pita bread, the kid-approved food is easy to make and can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days. The fun pink dip is also full of fiber and protein for growing kids. The food is also great for baby led-weaning, toddlers, and kids.

10. Chicken + Carrot Meatballs

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I love cooking chicken + carrot meatballs for my lovely baby. The healthy meatballs with veggies are a perfect option, especially for a portion of first-finger food and even the whole family. I can make the super easy recipe with 4 main ingredients, including ground chicken, spinach, carrots, and apple sauce. The mini and moist meatball is perfect for my babies attempting to pick the food on their own. The recipe is fully adjustable to my preference and baby’s taste.

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11. Mini Bagel Pizzas

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

My toddlers love adding pepper “sprinkles to their mini bagel pizzas. I am delighted as the sprinkles are actually blended veggies. Of course, the picky eater-approved food is a healthy and fun lunch for toddlers or kids. The colorful and bright veggie sprinkles will be a hit for your kids. The super-yummy pizzas are made with 4 simple ingredients, including tomato sauce, wheat bagels, peppers, and mozzarella cheese. The food belongs to nutrient-packed meals containing full of whole-grain and protein.

12. Hidden-Veggie Popsicles

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Totally The Bomb)

I bring hidden veggie popsicles for a great snack on a hot summer day. The healthy treat is super easy to make in less than 5 minutes. I serve snacks, whether quick breakfast, lunch, or dessert in the summer. Filled with only carrots, oranges, yogurts, and no sugar, my baby loves these popsicles. Best of all, summer food is full of nutrients for toddlers’ growth and development.

13. Chocolate Smoothie with Peanut Butter

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Wendy Polisi)

I make a chocolate smoothie with hidden veggies for my kids, who refuse to eat the veggies. The nutrient-dense smoothie is perfect for an easy and quick breakfast. I keep silent about any cauliflower and other veggies inside the smoothie. To blend ingredients, I need 5 minutes. The taste is like a chocolate milkshake, but the smoothie is filled with hidden veggies and no sweeteners. It is super simple to make. 

14. Baked seasoned chicken tenders

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

Instead of fried chicken, I make these baked chicken tenders for my beloved ones. I serve the healthy dish to the toddlers with a fork. The seasoned chicken tenders are great to serve with chopped blueberries and roasted sweet potatoes. I cut the chicken tenders into small chunks to pick the strips easier. I can also make healthy and delicious foods for the whole family. Whether you prepare the perfectly seasoned food for lunch, dinner, or school snacks, these baked seasoned chicken tenders are great for babies and toddlers.

15. Tomato Soup with Cheesy Bread Dippers

food ideas for kids
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I love this tomato soup with cheesy bread dippers for my toddler lunch. I made the soup filled with canned tomatoes, plain Greek yogurt, and Italian spices in less than 20 minutes. Greek yogurt is my favorite as it can make creamy soup yumminess. My toddler likes this cheesy bread to dip into the soup. Without all the unhealthy fat, nut-free food is full of whole grains and protein for kids’ growth. I can also pack the soup for school lunch.

16. Toddler Rainbow Pizza loaded with veggies

Toddler Rainbow Pizza loaded with veggies
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

Most toddlers love colorful dishes, and rainbow pizza with veggies is great. Making this veggie-loaded rainbow pizza is a perfect option for kids to eat veggies. The pizza is super easy-peasy to make and contains lots of colorful veggies, like peppers, spinach, amount of peas, and more. I also encourage my kids to make pizza with me. They can handle the cooking project, although making an enormous mess everywhere.

17. Lemon Blueberry Mini Muffins

Lemon Blueberry Mini Muffins
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

The lemon blueberry muffins will be a hit for your toddlers and the whole family. I can make it with simple ingredients, including yogurt, wheat flour, apple sauce, and a natural sweetener. Filled with wholesome ingredients, I can make less than 10 minutes of prep time for a one-bowl mini muffin. The food is great for breakfast, lunch, or snacks. If needed, these mini foods can also be made dairy-free or gluten-free.

18. Blueberry Outmeal

Blueberry Outmeal
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

Blueberry oatmeal is our favorite food at home. The healthy oatmeal is perfect for all family members, whether a baby pure, chunks for baby-led weaning, serving with additional foods for toddlers, and adding special topping for kids or adults. Of course, the meal offers a healthy treat for the whole family. I make it in less than 10 minutes with simple ingredients. The vibrant-color food also contains full of essential vitamins, fibers, antioxidants, and minerals.

19. Peach Pie Smoothie with 2 hidden veggies

Peach Pie Smoothie with 2 hidden veggies
Source: Pinterest (@The Ktchn)

Peach pie smoothie is my favorite for toddlers who refuse to eat veggies. I come together two veggies into the smoothie, and they will even know. This smoothie recipe is also fun and easy to make. I use hands-on fresh ingredients, including bananas, peaches, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, honey, milk, and vanilla. Even added with extra veggies, the smoothie tastes like a peach pie. With 5-minute prep time, the kid-approved smoothie is great for toddlers, even for picky eaters.

20. Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

Peach Pie Smoothie with 2 hidden veggies
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

For a great family dinner? I love cooking chicken parmesan meatballs. The food is a family favorite whether babies, toddlers, pre-schoolers, picky eaters, or adults. My family, especially my little ones, love savoring them. Fortunately, I just need less than 30 minutes with only 5 ingredients to make a healthy dinner. Ground chicken, parmesan, breadcrumbs, egg, and spices are the ingredients. The healthy meatballs offer full of proteins.

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21. Cheesy Garlic Broccoli Pasta

Cheesy Garlic Broccoli Pasta
Source: Cupfulofkale

For an excellent family dinner, I love serving easy garlic broccoli pasta. It is super easy food for the whole family, from baby-led-weaning to adults. I can make healthy meals in less than 20 minutes with 5 simple ingredients. The delicious meal is perfect when I have low hands-on food or a short time for making food. Instead of cheesy noodles, this garlic broccoli pasta offers a creamy and delicious taste.

22. Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Wheat Chocolate Chip Cookies
Source: Pinterest (@Samiras Recipe)

Get ready for a sweet treat, wheat chocolate chip cookies. The snack is perfect for the entire family. I can make the snacks in less than 20 minutes. With simple ingredients, I can combine whole wheat flour and the right sweetness into the perfect combination of crunchy and chewy. The cookies are quick and easy to make. I often involve my little ones in making the cookies in the kitchen. The cookies are easily made nut-free and gluten-free.

23. Avocado Tuna Salad

Avocado Tuna Salad
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

The Avocado Tuna Salad is a fun twist on the classic recipe. My little ones like the creamy texture of avocado combined with apple chunks and some celery. Of course, the dish is excellent for healthy lunches for toddlers, kids, or the whole family. I serve the healthy food in a mini pita pocket with bread and some crackers. This tuna salad is also a great option for kids who refuse to eat the fish. My family loves these nutrient-packed meals containing healthy fats, growing kids, and whole grains.

24. Baked Oatmeal with Banana and Butter Peanut

Baked Oatmeal with Banana and Butter Peanut
Source: Pinterest (@Haute and Healthy Living)

My entire family love baked oatmeal with banana and peanut butter for breakfast or a snack. I can make the oatmeal baked in one bowl with pantry staples in less than 10 minutes of prep time. The family-friendly snacks are easily made gluten-free. It means that the baked oatmeal is great for kids of all ages, including adults. Best of all, I can also store the food in the freezer for several days.

25. Chocolate Granola Bars

Chocolate Granola Bars
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

Chewy mint chocolate granola bars are a refreshing and fun snack for the whole family, especially the kids. The snack is full of nut butter, whole oats, coconut oil, flax seeds, and honey. I usually make gluten and sugar-free granola bars for healthy purposes. Best of all, I involve my little ones to help pick out, measure, and pour the ingredients into the bender. They can help pour the chocolate and add the oat mixture over the top.  

26. Rainbow Frozen Yogurt Bark

Rainbow Frozen Yogurt Bark
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

This frozen bark is my favorite for the summer. The colorful, delicious, and healthy treat is perfect for toddlers, kids, and even the whole family. With the 3 main ingredients, including honey, yogurt, and fruits, I can make this frozen bark in less than 10 minutes of prep time. The nutrient-dense and kid-approved recipe are great for breakfast, snacks or dessert. I can also use frozen or fresh fruits to make a healthy frozen snack in the hot summer.

27. Caramel Apple Nachos

Caramel Apple Nachos
Source: Pinterest (@Delizh)

I serve caramel apple nachos for my little ones. The apple nachos are easy to make and offer comfort meals to eat. I made the healthy version of caramel sauce with natural sweeteners. With less than 20 minutes, the healthy and fun fall treat is ready to enjoy. Plus, I can customize the delicious treat, whether gluten-free, dairy-free or vegan. The caramel apple nachos pack full of nutrients for growing kids.

28. Chicken Chili Verde

Chicken Chili Verde
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I love cooking delicious and healthy foods, and Chicken chilli Verde is great. The easy and healthy food is perfect for satisfying my little ones and the whole family. I made the healthy soup filled with simple ingredients, including chicken, a tomatillo salsa verde, beans, and corn. The gluten-free food is easily made in less than 10 minutes of prep time.

29. Healthy Chicken Nuggets

Healthy Chicken Nuggets
Source: Pinterest (@My Kids Lick The Bowl)

My kids really love to eat chicken nuggets. I serve healthy chicken nuggets with the green bean for their favorite meal. The nuggets are delicious and crispy, and I serve them with green bean fries for healthy alternative food. Made with whole wheat flour, white meat chicken, parmesan cheese, and breadcrumbs, I choose a healthy dinner that is perfect for baby-led weaning, toddlers, kids, and adults.

30. Freezer-friendly Spinach Waffles 

Freezer-friendly Spinach Waffles 
Source: Pinterest (@Baby Foode)

I go with freezer-friendly spinach waffles to deal with for a short time in the morning. It is quick food and easy to make. I can make a fast and healthy breakfast for baby-led weaning, toddlers, pre-schoolers, or up. The nutrient-packed spinach waffles can also be served for snack, lunch, or dinner and are full of fiber, iron, and protein. I keep offering the green waffles when my kids are picky.

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The food ideas for kids above are perfect, whether for baby-led weaning, finger food, toddlers, pre-schoolers, and even the entire family. I can make spiced blender pancakes on a hectic morning for breakfast. The rainbow popsicles with hidden veggies or beet hummus are great for picky eaters. 

When my kids refuse to eat healthy foods, I serve smoothies, mini pizza bagels, or veggie meatballs. All the food ideas for kids above offer great solutions for daily family menus. The kid-friendly recipes have my kids happy, leaving the food table healthy, happy, and full-bellied.

What are children’s Favourite foods?

The kids’ favorite foods include pizza, hamburgers, chicken nuggets, hot dogs, grilled cheese, macaroni, and sandwich. Most of these foods contain much saturated fats. It’s better to offer them healthy and fresh foods. 

What can I cook for my kids today?

You can plan super easy food recipes for kids with simple ingredients in less than 5 minutes of prep time, like banana pancakes, veggie fried rice, taco for baby, or even chocolate smoothie. 

What are the best meals for children?

I choose meals filled with vegetables or fruits, protein, whole grains, and natural sweeteners. Veggie meatballs or veggie fried rice are perfect meals to boost the nutrition in breakfast or lunch. 

What to cook for kids that are picky eaters?

Most picky eaters stick to eating comfort foods, including grilled cheese, french fries, crackers, and toast. They are commonly oversensitive to the foods’ flavors, textures, and smells. However, you must keep offering them healthy foods with hidden veggies. Start with small amounts but with big nutrients.