I grew up in the 90’s when Lunchables were all the rage. And while a lot of things in the school lunch department have changed since then (someone please tell me when brown paper bags stopped being a thing), one thing remains the same: kids loooooove Lunchables.
There’s something about that DIY meal in a disposable bento box that is just so exciting and makes even the pickiest eaters more open to eating. So I started thinking…what’s the magic secret that makes Lunchables so irresistible to little eaters?
It’s actually pretty simple. There are 5 big reasons Lunchables are a picky eater’s dream meal. Take note of what you can do at home to help your child comfortably and confidently try new foods.
Lunchables are a true “choose your own adventure” experience. Kids get to decide *exactly* how they want to approach the meal and can design each bite to their liking (even if that means eating everything separately). That feels really good!
Even classic kid foods like pizza can be tough for extremely picky eaters. It’s a lot of flavors and textures mixed together and that’s tough for kids with sensory issues and those who like knowing what to expect. But individual foods in individual compartments? Now that’s a picky eater’s DREAM.
Everything about Lunchables – from the way they look to the whole concept of putting together your own meal – is just so cool and fun. Never underestimate the power of something fun, different and creative. Sometimes it’s just what a picky eater needs to get over the hump and actually eat.
This is not always the case, but it often is: smaller portions and smaller bites are easier for super picky eaters. Lunchables gets this right on multiple fronts. They take “big” foods (like pizza) and make them smaller. They also don’t offer too much of any one particular food (there’s just a small packet of squeezable sauce…which is so cool by the way). Plus, tiny portions are more manageable (and more realistic for little bellies).
I mean, who isn’t excited when a meal comes with a side of sweet? It’s not only that treats are fun; sweets actually pique the appetite and can be an invitation to eat better for the rest of the meal. Plus, once kids start eating, they’re more likely to continue.
Curious if there are *actual* benefits of serving dessert with dinner? Read this.
So, are Lunchable-style meals the answer to solve your picky eating struggles? Probably not. But here’s what you can do: borrow ideas from Lunchables’ success and bring more excitement and ease to your child’s meals.